Saturday, 26 March 2016

The Brussels terrorist attacks

Following this week's bombings in Brussels, I've been thinking what I could possibly say that wasn't already said after last year's attacks in Paris.

The bombings are both shocking but not surprising and raises the question of which European capital will be next. Knowing that in all likelihood there will be another major attack is one of the most depressing aspects of this story.

We've had the show of solidarity for the Brussels victims, the calls for how we must not let the terrorists alter our way of life but after all of this what comes next?

It would appear that the Belgium counter-terrorist authorities have proved a weak link in Western Europe's overall strategy against Islamic terrorism. From what I can tell the Belgium authorities simply don't have the same level of experience of dealing with terrorist groups in comparison to say Britain with our history of dealing with the IRA.

Britain's security forces have been fairly successful in preventing terrorist plots which explains why we haven't had a major attack since 7/7. But as the old saying goes, the terrorists only have to be lucky once while the security forces need to get it right every single time.

Europe will need to improve its overall joint strategy in tackling ISIS and Islamic terrorism. Europe needs to develop its own counter-terrorism network to confront the network of ISIS.

The next issue involves a long-term challenge of tackling Islamic extremism at its roots and targeting those communities in Brussels, Paris and in cities across Britain where young Muslim men turn to violence and extremism.

This will be a slow and long process and if I'm honest I don't know the causes or the answers as to why so many young Muslim men of second and third generation immigrants in their country of birth decide to reject the values of their home country for a violent and destructive ideology of ISIS.



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