If it walks like a ter­ror­ist

Only the will­fully blind can’t see the pro­lif­er­at­ing ter­ror threat

The Washington Times Daily - - OPINION - By Cal Thomas Cal Thomas is a na­tion­ally syn­di­cated colum­nist. His lat­est book is “What Works: Com­mon Sense So­lu­tions for a Stronger Amer­ica” (Zon­der­van, 2014).

In tele­vi­sion it’s called a “loop,” the re­play­ing of the same scene over and over and over again. The lat­est and most as­suredly not the fi­nal ter­ror­ist at­tack in Lon­don last week­end was a “loop” that has be­come all too fa­mil­iar. The ji­hadists, who claimed to be act­ing on or­ders from their god, killed at least eight and in­jured more than 45 oth­ers, some crit­i­cally, with a brazen at­tack on Lon­don Bridge and in a nearby pub.

“Why was he free to kill … ji­hadist was known to MI5 ad­mit po­lice,” asked a head­line in the Daily Mail.

Hello? Is any­one home? Why did gov­ern­ment and law en­force­ment au­thor­i­ties not see this com­ing? If they walk like ter­ror­ists, talk like ter­ror­ists and be­have like ter­ror­ists, they are ter­ror­ists. Why must we al­ways be re­ac­tive in­stead of proac­tive? Has po­lit­i­cal cor­rect­ness be­come a sui­cide pact?

One of the killers was iden­ti­fied as 27-year-old Khu­ram Butt, a fa­ther of two. In­cred­i­bly, the po­lice did noth­ing af­ter Butt was shown in a TV doc­u­men­tary un­furl­ing an ISIS flag in a pub­lic park and pray­ing with fel­low Mus­lims.

Butt might as well have had an alarm bell around his neck and a red light flash­ing over his head.

Fol­low­ing the 2013 knife at­tack and mur­der of Bri­tish sol­dier Lee Rigby by Mus­lim ex­trem­ists, Butt be­rated those Mus­lims who spoke out against the in­ci­dent. He called men with­out beards “non-be­liev­ers.”

In what must be con­sid­ered the most lu­di­crous state­ment (so far) to come from au­thor­i­ties, Mark Row­ley, the as­sis­tant com­mis­sioner for Spe­cial­ist Op­er­a­tions in the Metropoli­tan Po­lice Ser­vice, re­jected any blame: “In the work look­ing back­wards that we have done so far I have not seen any­thing that shows a poor de­ci­sion has been made.” Mr. Row­ley needs to make an ap­point­ment to have his eyes checked.

Butt was re­ported to the anti-ter­ror hot­line by peo­ple who knew him and who feared he was be­ing rad­i­cal­ized by watch­ing ex­trem­ist YouTube videos. He was re­ported to have of­fered chil­dren candy and money to lis­ten to him preach about Is­lam. Though he was on a ter­ror­ist watch list, po­lice said there was no ev­i­dence he was plan­ning an at­tack and thus he was not deemed a “pri­or­ity.” Given all of these signs, the ob­vi­ous ques­tion is what would have made him a pri­or­ity? What more could he and his fel­low mur­der­ers have done to war­rant a po­lice re­sponse? There are other ques­tions. Why are those who preach hate al­lowed to con­tinue? Why have these hate preach­ers not been ar­rested and those who are not Bri­tish cit­i­zens de­ported? Why have their mosques, of­ten the cen­ter of rad­i­cal teach­ing, not been closed? Why doesn’t the Bri­tish gov­ern­ment shut its bor­ders, or at least en­gage in Pres­i­dent Trump’s idea of “ex­treme vet­ting,” be­fore al­low­ing any more peo­ple from coun­tries that teach vi­o­lent ji­had?

It’s long past time to stop wor­ry­ing about the “rights” of peo­ple who in­tend to kill and maim us “in­fi­dels” and start pro­tect­ing the rights of peo­ple who do not wish to be killed and maimed. Loos­en­ing gun laws to al­low law-abid­ing Bri­tish cit­i­zens to carry weapons for self-pro­tec­tion and for all po­lice to carry guns for the pro­tec­tion of oth­ers would be a good start.

If Bri­tain, the rest of Europe and the United States won’t take more ag­gres­sive ac­tion against peo­ple who are be­com­ing in­creas­ingly ag­gres­sive to­ward us, we can ex­pect more of these at­tacks. Will it take the death of a high-pro­file politi­cian’s loved one to spur gov­ern­ments to take the nec­es­sary steps to fight this war? And make no mis­take, it is a war.

Let’s hope not.

IL­LUS­TRA­TION BY GREG GROESCH

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