Murdered Soldiers and the Mythology of Terrorism

From Mr VI on Modern Mythology:

Wednesday 22nd 2013, 1421  – Woolwich, South London.

That’s when the call was placed to police – that’s when the authorities became aware that two men were hacking another to death with machetes. But there were witnesses to this act – it happened in broad daylight. Bloodstained hands were caught on camera-phones, tweets going viral while the perpetrators explained why they had done it, to passers by.

They didn’t run, they waited for police. Fourteen minutes later, armed police showed up, and were charged by at least one of the perpetrators. They promptly shot him. Both perpetrators are now in hospital, under guard.

The dead man was a serving soldier. The perpetrators were young black men, who were Muslims. Media makes much of them shouting ‘God is Great’ in Arabic, and their statements that the reason for this is Western troops in Muslim countries.

There will be countless other editorials on this act, and terrorism in general, for many years to come, but as a Briton of a certain age, I grew up with mainland terrorism. Irish Republican paramilitary groups were making threats and blowing things up and killing people throughout my childhood. It’s nothing particularly new, because ultimately, yesterday’s act was an ideological murder.

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  • echar

    Manipulating the media to get their message across, and of course they allow it to go on like the crack whores that they are.

  • Simon Valentine

    miracle grow
    bought out by monsanto
    ceased
    and desisted

    the imperceptible duty meets the omniscient dutiful
    and someone complains about ‘feelings’, ‘senses’, and ‘virtue’

  • http://twitter.com/TedHeistman Ted Heistman

    I guess I don’t really get the point of this….

  • RagBoneMan

    It seems that they weren’t a part of any broader network, just a couple of guys with psychosis to spare who were looking for an excuse to go and hack someone’s head off. Ideology served as that excuse. This is just a random murder committed by a pair of raving nutters, it’s not really a part of any pattern or larger conspiracy.

    I’m more concerned about some Tories talking about reconsidering the Lib-Dem-scrapped Communications Data Bill, which would allow the police to track everyone’s internet and mobile phone use and keep their last 12 months of browsing history and contacts on record, on the basis of this completely random and entirely unrelated event. Had the Bill been in effect, it would have made no difference in this case whatsoever. Laughably bare-faced political opportunism.

    The Bill is tantamount to having your thoughts policed. Even if putting the Act into effect could prevent crimes like this (which it couldn’t), then it still wouldn’t be worth it.

    • Charlie Primero

      Wrong. Both men were affiliated with militant organizations.

      This is Problem -> Reaction -> Solution

      Create the Problem: Shove disparate cultures together and institute government policies which put them at odds.

      Reaction: Irritation, discomfort, tension, competition, anger, and eventually violence.

      Solution: The People beg for more government and less freedom.

      Successful Result: More control and profit for Oligarchs.

      Oh look, “The Draft Communications Data Bill was draft legislation proposed by Home Secretary Theresa May in the United Kingdom which would have required additional data collection and retention of user activity by Internet service providers and mobile phone
      services”. Was rejected, now being reconsidered.

      • RagBoneMan

        Having read my post back to myself I can understand how I was misinterpreted. What I mean to say is that these are two men, born to Christian Nigerian families and raised in London, who have willingly converted to Islamic fundamentalism and extremism. This to me shows that their actions had less to do with the actual ideology they ascribed to and more to do with them, as a result of their own personal issues, wanting to go out and fight a revolution, no matter the cause. Wanting to actually see some action, to kill someone. That’s sort of irrelevant to the rest of what I’m going to say, though.

        Is it your opinion that the government has conspired to create the circumstances you detailed? Because it looks more like a string of stupid policy decisions followed by political opportunism to me. The freedom of immigration between commonwealth countries resulted in Britain’s early waves of Indian immigrants, which in turn made Britain a favoured destination for Indians / Pakistanis to emigrate to in following decades. These initial waves occurred before many of those now in government were even born.

        Unless you agree with Enoch Powell’s Rivers of Blood speech, that people of different races and cultures are predestined to slaughter each other for the sole reason that they are different, then it could not be guaranteed, at that time, that the country’s immigration policies would result in any serious unrest.

        Post-9/11, religion was made into more of a serious issue. This, in my mind, was an adverse side effect of extremely ill-advised government spin. The attack was a reaction to American and British foreign policy. But you couldn’t say that, because that would actually implicate us in wrongdoing. So instead, it’s marketed to the populace by the government’s big-media lapdogs as an assault on our culture, values and lifestyles by religious fundamentalists. So we wage a ‘War on Terror’, where ‘Terror’ is an obvious substitute word for ‘Muslims’, and whip the populace into an anti-Islamic fervor as we send our military marching off to secure our oil interests in un-coincidentally Muslim countries.

        This was a fucking stupid move when you have a large population of Muslims living in your home nation, who you are now giving all the more reason to organise attacks against you. But never mind, you can spin that too, while pimping out multiculturalism at the same time.

        So basically it’s a big long chain of semi-related circumstances and stupid decisions with no singular motive. Equal parts conspiracy and short-sighted fuck-up. I agree, however, that the media fear-mongering surrounding these attacks is playing into the hands of our paranoid government who are intent on controlling us, and furthering their own interests at our expense, more than ever.

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