Thursday, March 30, 2017

Could There Other Reasons That Lead To Terrorism?

The attack on Wednesday 22nd March in Westminster London, killed and injured many people and continue to impact others' lives in a way they may never comprehend. It is a shameful and devilish act that everyone must condone. And do so unequivocally.

However, the road we all seems to travel sheepishly these days is to scream 'Islamic terrorism' and thus ignorantly big-up the thwarted religionists who claim to be fighting in the name of [their] God. In doing so, our society - or at least those who lead it - subtly ramp up Islamophobia while claiming how victorious we have been as a society.

In actual fact, our society fails if acts of terror such as Mr Masood's, are now common. Instead of ranting on about victory, we should be taking a long hard look at the society we have created, and ask ourselves, what has become of us and our contribution in the lives of people such as Khalid Masood or Jihadi John and others like them that push them to this place of destruction. It cant all be due to their desire to fight a holy war. And even if it be that, what drives them in such droves to choose so?

We cannot continue to extricate ourselves and government from the causes and reasons these terrible actions occur and continue to unleash disaster on us. The Khalid Masoods of this world and of the West in particular, are a product of a society that has failed them, and many others who luckily are not reacting extremely - yet. While we must condemn violence in any forms it comes, we must also find the humility to ask ourselves if we have stoked it in any way, big or small. 

Aside from religious angst, could it be possible that Khalid Masood was railing against a system that has failed him. A system that continuously focused on making the rich richer while the poor are left to be poorer through various legitimised exploitation and consumerist ideology. A system that retrogressively was unequal. A system that promoted racism, homophobia, xenophobia, sexism, inequality and all other social negative impact.

Could it be that Khalid Masood might have been angry, frustrated and exhausted because of the loss of hope; the same that many people left behind by globalisation feels the world over? Or could it be that he is driven to such destructive anger due to something from his past; a possible injustice, discrimination, denied opportunity; you name it? Many minorities and white working class in the UK had lived through the worse of those in the past. And you only need to know a handful of these innocent victims to not wish it on your worst enemy.

What if Khalid Masood was not solely Islamist as we'd love him to be?  What if he wasn't Islamically radicalised? What if he acted in spite of his faith? Why must it only be that his faith had motivated him? And even if that were to be the the present reason, why could it not have been that his faith is only a contributing, perhaps, even small factor that finally pushed him to despondency, for a system and society that is far removed from his hopes and aspirations?
Why might it not have been because of the increasing racism and xenophobia that public discourse is now based on and that is alive and happening to so many who have no voice? The never-ending subtle Islamophobia and xenophobia which even politicians now see as a way to voters' heart. Blaming Islamic radicalisation is easy, but it is lazy and self-righteousness and it blinds us from reflecting and taking responsibility. Khalid Masood, as it turns out, is a product of this society. And whether he was radicalised or was working for a terrorist organisation, he was first angered and disappointed in this society. For that alone, we must accept some if not a lot of responsibility. Condemn his act we must but responsibility we also must take if we must find balanced solution.

Call me an apologist if you may; but these are legitimate questions and while I denounce his violent action, I am worried that ignoring these important factors without deep thoughts and consideration, may lead us blindly to more disaster.

The victorious rant by politicians, from the Prime Minister to the least is pathetic in the sense that none of them has paused and shown any reflection as to what other contributory factors leads to these delinquent actions. And as such, without that contemplation and sign of responsibility for our part in the journey of people like Khalid Masood, the journey that obviously did not began the day he joined or allied to Islamists groups, we can spend as much monies on security and policing but this would only get worse.

Our current approach of shouting 'they have failed' from the roof tops will not end madness. They have not failed because they have no defined goals although we like to assign them some. It is us who failed because we have let down our own communities until some got attracted to the dark side in the first place.

As I write this, many more young people in this country are despondent, faced with insurmountable institutionalised hurdles that they cannot possibly dare to jump. From ethnic minorities to poor working class white families. Many has no hope. The Brexit referendum brought it to the fore but still, our government is doing nothing but riding roughshod on that anger while ignoring those who are angry. Even with UK outside the EU, we know that nothing would change if it continues as it presently is. That overbearing weight of the anger, frustration, loss of hope, inequality, absence of a future, lack of access, social mobility, etc; these drive people to destruction. Islamist terrorism may be the most common route today but the number of kids killed via knife crime in London alone in less than first 3 months of the 2017 has soared over normalcy.

'They have failed. They want to change our way of life. They are against our freedom and democracy', etc all sounds like propaganda to me if no one is giving a thought to the core roots why these people are unleashing violent anger in the first place. It is our society that is failing and although it claims to be democratic, is still heavily reliant on different structures of class albeit it subtle. These frustrations and destruction is the result of our failure. Time to take a balanced stock and stop ignoring reality.

P.S. This post is solely based on my social issues awareness and the belief that ignoring those at the edge of society to fester will evenutally lead them to become the dangers we have to fight with our last breath. Nothing in this post is written as a means or belief to accept or condone the act of terror by Mr Khalid Masood, Jihadi John, knife criminals or any such figures. I sincerely and totally condemn their acts and any act or acts of violence, no matter the degree by whomever. However, I honestly and wholly believe that to build a peaceful and safe society, no one should be left behind or treated differently. If you are concerned or in doubt about the contents of this blog, please feel free to contact me to discuss. Thank you.

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