Now that Cherif Kouachi and big brother Said have been sent to collect their allocation of virgins, we must turn our attention to more serious matters than the voyeuristic absorption in the loss of a handful of meddlesome scribblers. The main issue that will be consuming the French body politic, and by illustration and example, concerning us equally in Australia, is what can be done to repair the deep hurt to the feelings of those like the Charlie Hebdo killers who have been disfranchised and alienated by our racist, uncaring, intolerant and alienating society.
There were some suggestions today from Dr Clarke Jones, a visiting fellow in Crime, Policing, Security and Justice at the Australian National University, Canberra:
“It needs to be done on a case by case basis, and then look at providing….it could be providing opportunities in relation to education, it could be sporting programmes, but looking at developing a new role model, a new vision in life for them, a new pathway in life and giving them a sense of hope, making them feel part of society, making them understand – y’know – why they’ve got this level of disagreement with the government and……society as a whole.”
OK, I cheated. I left out a few key words. They would have made it clear that Jones, interviewed on the ABC’s AM radio programme on Friday morning, was talking about Muslims in Australia, not in France.
But in the context of this week’s events, it was fair of me to quote his words to demonstrate the risk that soppy, muddle-headed apologists will attempt to set the agenda in coming discussions on the menace of Muslim radicalism. Jones, it will be remembered, described Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s ‘Team Australia’ as counter-productive. It was confusing, he opined, and reinforced the sense of marginalisation.
Marginalised!? Who has been more marginalised than the cartoonists and writers of Charlie Hebdo? Than the late Katrina Dawson and Tori Johnson in that Lindt coffee shop?
Is this what we can expect from our academics, our so-called intellectuals, and from the programme makers at the ABC? The AM segment was carefully staged – by the presenter’s comments, by the selection of interview subjects, and by the lack of any pragmatic commonsense statements on Islam, Mohammed or terrorism.
Reporter Michael Edwards took it upon himself to declare:
“Another similarity among those who carry out violent acts in the name of ideology or religion is a sense of being disenfranchised from the societies they live in. This alienation, but it real or imagined, is cited by experts as the reason some young western Muslims turn to extremism.”
As if radical Islamic terrorists seeking to avenge perceived insults to their prophet need to be explained principally in psychological rather than fanatical terms, the ABC turned to Professor Lazar Stankov, a psychology “expert” from the Australian Catholic University. He had a neat three-step explanation for why people commit acts of violence such as the Paris shootings:
- Nastiness, readiness to accept aggressive acts towards others.
- Having a grudge. Believing that something is not fair.
- Resorting to some kind of higher order to justify acting.
Then AM and Michael Edwards wheeled in Andrew Macleod, a “terrorism expert” at Kings College London and the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington DC:
“One of the things that we’ve seen most recently with terrorist attacks is most of the attackers are feeling disengaged with the community or the society that they’re living in and they’ve reached out to extremism to get a sense of belonging.”
It might have been thought that Macleod, a former Australian Army officer, would have had a more pragmatic assessment of the problem. If this perverted view of radical Islam should take hold in the community — the aim being a softening-up by the ABC’s groupthinkers and some other media organisations — we may as well disband all the organs of our security services and turn over the defence of the country to the Human Rights Commission.
As things stand, we must rely on France for a lead. Not only have its journalists and cartoonists shown bravery in their determination to publish in the face of deadly threat, its ordinary citizens are leading the charge against the rising pressure of seven million Muslim migrants in their country. Energised by a number of recent books – Le Suicide Francais; Musulmans vous nous Mentez (“Muslims, you lie to us”); Reconquista ou Mort de l”Europe (“Win Europe back or she dies”); and most notably Soumission by Michel Houellebecq, an imagination of France under a Muslim President in 2022, ruling according to Sharia Law, and published on the very day of the Charlie Hebdo shooting – Parisiens are planning a mass protest.
An organization called La Riposte Laique (The Secular Reaction) has set Sunday January 18 for a gathering in the Place de la Bourse under the slogan Islamistes hors de France (Muslims Get Out). This group founded seven years ago, has been strengthened by the increase in atrocities in recent months.
The day before Islamic State issued its worldwide call to kill infidels wherever they live, a rap video swept France — Medine Don’t Laik — which put the Islamist agenda in dramatic, semi-musical form. Celebrity rapper Medine called openly for Muslims to crucify non-believers, sang of cutting off hands, legally cutting throats under sharia, and putting fatwas on the heads of fools who fail to heed the Prophet’s call. It’s had hundreds of thousands of plays on YouTube.
La Riposte Laique concluded its call to arms in these words:
Everyone knows that 2015 will be a very important year in the war for civilisation that Islam and its disciples has declared. Our people are in danger from Islam and Islamic collaborationists. Only a massive popular mobilization can prevent the emerging catastrophe.
Australia may not yet be facing the catastrophe, but it is in danger from the collaborationists, like those at the ABC, with their politically correct explanations and justifications.
Geoffrey Luck was an ABC journalist for 26 years