My initial reaction to the alleged plot of the three men from Birmingham to bomb the EDL was, “good, they deserve it.” But as my morality and logic kicked in, it became a little more complicated.
The men had been stopped in Sheffield for a routine check and later arrested in possession of guns and explosives. What gave away their alleged plan was a little note on the weapons which said “English Drunkards League.” You can join the dots.
The wrong message
The very definition of Terrorism is an act of violence with a political message behind it. But the only message behind bombing the EDL is “we’re exactly like you think we are”. The worst case is that it actually helps the EDL to gain more supporters by justifying their own existence.
It makes me shiver when the odd few Muslims irresponsibly lash out in response to controversy.
The perfect example of this was after the publishing of the cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad. Those who seemed intent on making the lives of ordinary Muslims a misery waved banners which read ‘Al-Qaeda’ and ‘bomb the West.’ Why on earth would any sane Muslim feed the very fire which causes Islamophobia in Europe?
I more than anybody would like to see an end to the hostility that Muslims in Britain have to put up with. But these fundamentalists are bent on achieving their ridiculous goal of eradicating the West, no matter how much Muslims suffer on the way.
Terror vs. Terror
They are the two polar ends of an abstract war between the far right and extremist Muslims. In simple terms, nutters against nutters.
The EDL aren’t exactly non-violent themselves. In true EDL style, members beat an Asian boy up and ran another over at a protest in Lancashire last year. On the same day, they had trapped MEP Sajjad Karim inside his own house along with his wife and children, and hurled abuse at them.
The group was originally a bunch of angry football hooligans who formed on anti-Islamic principles. Co-founder Tommy Robinson has apparently thought about stepping into politics. But there really is no need. Bigotry is already more than fairly represented by the British National Party.
It is one of the thorns that comes with the rose of Democracy that fascist and racist groups must be allowed to exist and express their views, as everybody else can. Even if they are violent thugs.
See my original story on TheBowlerHat.co.uk.