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DELINGPOLE: Keep Calm And Carry On In The Face Of Muslim Terror? No Thanks

by James Delingpole

Whenever I’m trying to work out what I really think about another terrorist incident involving the Religion of Peace, the first place I always turn to is the BBC.

Whatever the BBC says I know for certain that the right view to take is the exact opposite.

And so it was last night on BBC News. A policeman had been stabbed to death; three passers-by had been deliberately mown down by a car on London’s Westminster Bridge, and another 29 injured, some very seriously. Clearly, this was yet another Islamic-State-inspired terrorist attack whose main aim was to inflict as much carnage as possible to as many innocent victims as possible until the perpetrator got shot.

Or so you might have thought, till you watched the BBC, which knew exactly what the real story was. Apparently, the tragedy of those dead and injured people, including at least one mother and several schoolchildren, was a relatively minor detail…

No, what the story was really about was that it was an assault on the heart of parliamentary democracy, a narrowly averted disaster which could have seen an actual MP get hurt and which, almost worst of all, meant that MPs and parliamentary staff and reporters and other inhabitants of the Westminster Bubble including the BBC’s own Laura Kuenssberg were forcibly cooped up inside the Parliament buildings for a few hours.

We knew this because one of the lead sections of the BBC’s coverage comprised amateurish footage that had been shot of Kuenssberg looking confused and trapped, wondering what was going outside. She was shown asking some other people trapped with her what was going on. They didn’t know, either.

But we did. That’s because by the time the news bulletin was broadcast at 10pm – seven hours after the incident – the story had moved on. We knew about the dead policeman. About the woman who’d jumped off the bridge into the river. About the poor chap who’d jumped over the parapet and fell 18 feet onto concrete. About the bearded assailant who’d died of his injuries not long after being shot by plain clothes police.

All of this was far more compelling and important and dramatic than anything Laura Kuenssberg might have experienced, hours earlier, during her unfortunate moment of temporary inconvenience under lockdown.

You could argue that this was simply a case of poor editorial judgement. Kuenssberg is, for better or worse, one of the BBC’s star reporters. Perhaps some cowed editor felt that her geographical proximity to the story – even though she hadn’t witnessed it or been able to do any useful reporting on it – justified giving her such prominence.

My own view, though, is that this was no accident. In fact the BBC’s coverage was emblematic of everything which is wrong with the liberal elite’s approach to Islamic terrorism. It promoted yet again, the tired, dishonest and counterproductive narrative that our liberal democratic values are more than enough to cope with grim but occasionally unavoidable attacks like this. And that all we need to do is keep calm and carry on: just like our brave parliamentarians.

Well no disrespect to MP Tobias Ellwood – the one parliamentarian (an ex-army officer whose brother was murdered by terrorists in the 2002 Bali bomb) did acquit himself well when he administered CPR to the dying policeman yesterday. But it really doesn’t take that much heroism to go to work one of the most heavily guarded buildings in Britain.

The idea that MPs or parliament were under any kind of threat yesterday would require you wilfully to ignore the levels of security you have to pass through before you can actually enter the inner sanctum. It takes more than one bloke with one car and a couple of knives to get through that.

Sure, an MP might have been hurt if he or she had been unlucky enough to be passing by at the moment the terrorist entered that first gate into New Palace Yard guarded by the unfortunate unarmed policeman Keith Palmer. But let’s just examine the casualty list of yesterday’s atrocity and see who the real victims were.

Yes, one policeman – killed doing his job.

And thirty other people, young and old, childless and single, from a rainbow hue of nations, as celebrated approvingly by the editor of the impeccably right-on New Statesman.

All of them were just innocent people, going about their business on a sunny March afternoon in London. All will now have had their lives shattered in one way or another. And all – if we believe the narrative currently being promoted by the BBC, by all the usual lefty-liberal suspects on Twitter, and also in parliament and city hall – must just accept that they were merely collateral damage in an unfortunate spot of business with one or two rogue citizens which we’re better off forgetting about just as soon as we decently can.

Keep Calm And Carry On is the message that is supposed to sustain us over the coming decades as – in a shopping centre here, a concert hall there, on an aeroplane, in a tube train, at an airport etc – the odd few dozen of us is picked off here and there by bearded men with knives, guns, bombs, trucks and speeding 4 x 4s. Like those wildebeeste unfortunate enough to stray to the edges of the herd, we’re supposed to accept that lions and crocodiles are just one of those things.

Well I’m not sure that personally I want to just accept this counsel of despair. I’m with Katie Hopkins – who wrote this must-read piece yesterday and has ever since been derided for it by the usual suspects as some kind of air-headed, unBritish coward who has surrendered in the face of terrorism.

First, Katie Hopkins is definitely not a coward – as anyone who has read her reportage from the Muslim ghettoes of Calais and Sweden can testify.

Second, her position is the exact opposite of surrendering to terrorism: what she’s arguing for is that we should confront it – and its root causes – rather than carrying on with current policy which is to cover our eyes, stick our fingers in our ears and go “lalala not listening. Religion of Peace.”

There is lots and lots of stuff we can do to reduce the incidence of atrocities like yesterday’s – very little of which we are currently doing.

As one example of precisely where we’re going wrong you only had to listen to the statement made on the BBC News by a senior officer from the Metropolitan Police. Two things stood out. One was his firm warning that the police would be on the look out any kind of backlash from “right-wing extremists”; the other was his assurance that all the victims of the atrocity could be sure of access to state-of-the-art counselling services.

Since when did the police become a branch of the therapy industry? Since when, for that matter, did it acquire the duty to pursue imaginary crimes – those not committed by largely made-up “right-wing extremists” – with the same vigour as it pursued real, actual crimes like the one that had happened just a few hours earlier on Westminster Bridge? Sure I can accept that the police are understaffed. But no wonder they can’t keep up with terrorism if they’re wasting half their resources on politically correct anti-Islamophobia drives or doing stuff like harassing young men who had sex with drunken women who decided the morning after that actually it was ‘rape.’

The current policy of the police, of the government, of local government, of social services, of schools, of universities, of the judiciary – heavily endorsed by the liberal elite’s propaganda arms at the BBC and the Guardian – is that nothing can be done to resolve this mess because that might make the “Muslim community” feel got at.

Well it might. But there are worse things than being got at. Being deliberately mowed down and killed by some jihadist thug on your way to pick up your kids from school, say.

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