Message to Acting Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Service Craig Mackey | The Royal Family

A typically gracious and sensitive message from Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, following the tragic and despicable terrorist attack in Westminster yesterday:

“Following the shocking events in Westminster, Prince Philip and I are sorry that we will not be able to open the New Scotland Yard building as planned today, for very understandable reasons.  I look forward to visiting at a later date.  My thoughts, prayers, and deepest sympathy are with all those who have been affected by yesterday’s awful violence. I know I speak for everyone in expressing my enduring thanks and admiration for the members of the Metropolitan Police Service and all who work so selflessly to help and protect others.”

Source: Message to Acting Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Service Craig Mackey | The Royal Family

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Parliament attack: police officer among five dead in ‘sick and depraved’ incident | UK news | The Guardian

Five dead – including the assailant, and a police officer who attempted to stop him – and 40 injured in a terrorist incident on Westminster Bridge and at the gates of the Houses of Parliament. Attacker is believed to have links to Islamic militancy.

Source: Parliament attack: police officer among five dead in ‘sick and depraved’ incident | UK news | The Guardian

“Five people died after a single terrorist attacked [the Houses of Parliament at] Westminster [in London, England], stabbing a police officer to death as he tried to storm parliament, and killing three members of the public as he careered through the heart of the capital in a 4×4 vehicle. The attacker was among those killed and at least 40 other civilians were wounded, in the first mass casualty terrorist attack on Britain in over a decade, with the Commons and Lords locked down for several hours because of fears there could have been further attacks…

“The Met’s head of counter-terrorism, Mark Rowley, said the motivation of the attacker was assumed to be ‘Islamist related’ and he had tried to enter parliament but had been stopped… The use of the vehicle to attack civilians was a direct copy of an Islamic State tactic used previously with murderous effect in Nice and Berlin… The Guardian understands the initial working theories of the police investigation are the attacker was inspired by ISIS and was most likely a ‘lone actor’. The attacker [who has not yet been named] was already known to counter-terrorism officials.”

Special respect to Police Constable Keith Palmer, a 48-year-old officer with 15 years service and a husband and father, who – though unarmed – intercepted and attempted to subdue and detain the knife-wielding perpetrator as the assailant tried to gain entrance to the Houses of Parliament. PC Palmer was stabbed multiple times and, sadly, succumbed to his injuries, but his courageous action may well have saved others from injury or death.

Special respect also to Tobias Ellwood, MP (Member of Parliament), a counter-terrorism minister in the Foreign Office and a former Captain in the Royal Army, who attempted to staunch the wounds of PC Palmer and provide him with CPR – sadly, in vain. Ellwood’s brother, Jon, was killed in the Bali terror attack in 2002. Ellwood continued to work alongside first responders, once arrived, in what proved an unsuccessful attempt to save the officer.

Pray for London.

Talking to Foreign Fighters: Insights into the Motivations for Hijrah to Syria and Iraq

(2016). Talking to Foreign Fighters: Insights into the Motivations for Hijrah to Syria and Iraq. Studies in Conflict & Terrorism. Ahead of Print. doi: 10.1080/1057610X.2016.1274216

Source: Talking to Foreign Fighters: Insights into the Motivations for Hijrah to Syria and Iraq: Studies in Conflict & Terrorism: Vol 0, No 0

I try to avoid contemporary politics in this blog, as much as possible, but there are times when it’s unavoidable. We are, after all, at war, whether we like to admit that or not. And if we in the West, on both sides of the Atlantic, are going to be engaging in an ongoing war against radical Islamic militants for the foreseeable future – as appears likely – then it would help to know precisely what it is we’re fighting, and why.

The dominant narrative on the subject, that jihadists “appear to be mainly marginalized individuals with limited economic and social prospects, who are experiencing various kinds of frustration in their lives,” is belied by interviews with the fighters themselves, as this study makes clear:

“Little of the discussion of foreign fighters in Syria and Iraq is informed by primary data derived from talking with the foreign fighters. This article reports some initial findings from interviews with twenty foreign fighters in Syria. The findings are compared with three other recent studies of European foreign fighters, and aspiring fighters, based on some primary data. While those studies emphasize the role of low social and economic prospects in motivating the choice to go, this study found little evidence of such factors, and alternatively argues more attention should be given to existential concerns and the role of religiosity…

“In the twenty interviews analyzed no one indicated, directly or indirectly, that forms of socioeconomic marginalization played a significant role in their motivation to become a foreign fighter. Moreover, the interactions with these individuals were so heavily mediated by religious discourse it seems implausible to suggest that religiosity (i.e., a sincere religious commitment, no matter how ill-informed or unorthodox) is not a primary motivator for their actions. Religion provides the dominant frame these foreign fighters use to interpret almost every aspect of their lives, and this reality should be given due interpretive weight.”

I have commented before that while by no means all – or most, or even, considering the numbers, many – Muslims are terrorists (but even as little as 1% of 1.6 billion is still a lot of actual or potential terrorists), that does not mean that Islam itself is benign. As one commentator pointed out, it is certainly not the case that most Muslims are trying to destroy Western civilization, but it is nonetheless the case that most of those who are trying to destroy Western civilization are Muslims.

There is something about it that seems to inspire this sort of thing, in a way that Christianity, Judaism, or other major world religions does not. That “something” may have a lot to do with the nature of the Prophet of Islam, and how he and his successors spread the religion: through violent conquest and subjugation. This example continues to be highly influential, even today. In centuries past, Britain, France, and other European nations saw this clearly, and took steps to defend themselves, and what used to be called “European Christendom.” Now, there is reluctance even to mention such things, for fear of being accused of racism, xenophobia, or the like.

Political correctness notwithstanding, however, we ignore these truths – both historical and contemporary – at our peril, in my opinion.

France: Decomposing in Front of Our Eyes

Four officers were injured (two badly burned) when around 15 “youths” (Muslim gang-members) swarmed their cars and hurled rocks and firebombs at them. Police were aggrieved when the minister of interior called the attackers “little wild ones.”

Source: France: Decomposing in Front of Our Eyes

“Under this politically correct dictatorship, Western culture has established two principles. First, freedom of speech can be restricted any time someone claims that an opinion is an ‘insult.’ Second, there is a vicious double standard: minorities, especially Muslims, can freely say whatever they want against Jews and Christians.

“There is no better ally of Islamic extremism than this sanctimony of liberal censorship: both, in fact, want to suppress any criticism of Islam, as well as any proud defense of the Western Enlightenment or Judeo-Christian culture.”

I have striven to minimize, but not eliminate, contemporary political commentary in this blog, although I have never made any attempt to hide the fact that I am a traditionalist, and vigorously pro-Western, pro-European. But both tradition in general, and Western culture and values in particular, are unfortunately under vigorous assault in today’s world, both from radical, militant, ideological Islam, and from supposedly “liberal” activists on the political left, who are in reality anything but. Continue reading “France: Decomposing in Front of Our Eyes”

Commentary: Dovetailing agendas – reflections on sexuality, immigration, families, and economics

The recent massacre, by a (perhaps repressed-homosexual) Islamic terrorist of 49 people in an Orlando nightclub catering to the LGBT population of the area has served as, in the words of one commentator, a “Rorschach test” for some of the issues dividing Americans today, including homosexuality, immigration (although American-born, he was the son of Afghan immigrants), and Jihadism (Islamic extremism, militant Islam, etc.).

As is always the case with tragic events, this has brought out some of the best, and some of the worst, in the people of this country. It has also sparked, or helped to coalesce, a number of thoughts for me, personally.

Let me start by saying that I have quite a number of LGBT friends, many of whom I love dearly, regardless of what they might do in the bedroom. And furthermore, as Christians, we are called a) to remember that we all are sinners, and b) to love one another as we love ourselves, and as Christ loved us. So I have zero tolerance when it comes to bashing people, verbally or (especially) otherwise, for their sexual proclivities.

That said, from a political perspective, it occurs to me that supporting and promoting homosexuality is useful to those who want to “transform society”: not only for its own sake, by making what used to be seen as deviant behavior appear normal, but also because it serves as a form of social birth control, helping to bring down the population, and providing still more openings for the importation of third-world “migrants” to achieve the liberal ideal of a fully “blended” society. (We have also been taught for years that reducing population is an ecological necessity, but that’s a subject for another post.) In fact, the non-procreative nature of homosexual behavior is probably one of the reasons why it has been frowned upon by most societies throughout the world, and throughout history.

And of course the “sexual revolution” as a whole — which decoupled (no pun intended) sex from procreation, and turned it into a solely elective, recreational activity — had, and continues to to have, the same effect. A sentiment I hear expressed time and again on the net, and sometimes in person, is that “sex is just sex”: something to do with your spare time, a recreational activity, not a sacred duty and trust, intended for the strengthening of the bond between two intimate partners – namely, the husband and wife in a marriage relationship – and the procreation of children within that marriage.

While it’s not generally thought of as a “liberal” contribution, the loss of a living wage has also had a deleterious effect on families and child-bearing. It used to be that a single wage-earner could reasonably be expected to support his (usually) or her family, but that is no longer the case. With both parents working, there is less incentive to have children, and less opportunity for any children one does have to be formed in and by traditional family and societal values. As I say, this isn’t a strictly “liberal” policy, but it’s surely an effect of “neoliberal” economics!

Meanwhile, the “ideal” of the “career woman” has been praised to the heavens, while “stay at home moms” get sneered at. To cap that, we are informed that “well-behaved women rarely make history.” Well, that may (or may not) be true, but they certainly do make for stable, loving, and committed relationships, families, and homes, which in turn are the foundation of a stable society — and that is perhaps rather more important, in the overall scheme of things!

Anybody besides me starting to see a pattern, here…?

And of course, on a different but still related subject, the fewer guns that are in the hands of ordinary, law-abiding citizens who still believe in the Constitution and American values, customs, and traditions, the less meaningful will be any resistance to these policies. If governmental and non-governmental forces seem aggressive in their social-transformation policies now, imagine what they would be like if they were not at least somewhat restrained by the knowledge that there are up to 77 million armed American citizens!

I am becoming increasingly aware of, and appalled by, the way so many of these allegedly “liberal” ideas and policies dovetail together. Unfortunately, I don’t have an answer for what to do about it. But I will say that recognizing and facing up to the problem is an important first step!

Support for Orlando: Prince Harry writes Orlando mayor after being there only last month – Royal Central

“On June 14, Prince William and his wife, the Duchess of Cambridge visited the United States Embassy in London to sign a condolence book for those who lost their lives in the worst mass shooting in the U.S.” since the Wounded Knee massacre.

Source: Support for Orlando: Prince Harry writes Orlando mayor after being there only last month – Royal Central

Prince Harry of Wales Arlington Visit

“Just over a month ago, at the start of May, Prince Harry was in Orlando to host the 2016 Invictus Games, pointing out in his letter that ‘Having just spent time in Orlando I know what a warm and welcoming community it is.’ The Invictus Games which he founded for wounded veterans were immensely popular and even had the support of First Lady Michelle Obama, wife of U.S President Barak Obama.”

Letters of Condolences Stream in from European Royals to President Obama – Royal Central

“After the tragic terror attack in Orlando, Florida, on 12 June 2016, royals from across Europe have sent their condolences to President Obama and the American people.”

King Harald of Norway
King Harald of Norway

Source: Letters of Condolences Stream in from European Royals to President Obama – Royal Central

As an American, I am of course deeply grateful to Their Majesties and Highnesses for their kindness and compassion. However, with all respect to those who may feel differently, it is my belief that Mr. Obama does bear some responsibility for this and like incidents. Many of his actions, attitudes, and public statements have increased, rather than decreased, social and political polarization here in the U.S. And he has signally failed even to address, much less to effectively engage, the sources and motivations of this and other attacks. I do not feel that this is the time or place to get more specific, so suffice it to say that I am grateful to our Royal friends abroad, and pray for better government at home.