Tuesday 12 December 2017

Is anyone making an effort to end this mess?

Straight Talking - By Fintan Lambe

Fintan Lambe.
Fintan Lambe.

WHAT happened in Brussels last week was horrific.

The bombings in Turkey a few days previously were equally as devastating. Unfortunately, we've become used to hearing of bloodshed in Africa and the Middle East, but when the attacks occur closer to home, we sit up and take notice a little more.

It's easy to call for tighter border controls, to demand restrictions on the flow of refugees into Europe, and to want them all sent home, but the cold reality is that the two brothers who carried out the suicide attacks in Brussels weren't part of the wave of desperate humanity risking life and limb in the Mediterranean to escape hell on earth in Syria. They were locals.

They were young men who got sucked into a twisted ideology, which is an affront and an insult to the peaceful Islamic faith. That's not to imply I have one jot of sympathy for them. I don't. I can't understand or explain their actions at all. And when you can't understand something so horrific, it's very easy to be afraid.

If the terrorists are living among us, how do we protect ourselves? What can anyone do to stop them?

Their aim is to hit Western society where it hurts most - in our pockets. When people are afraid, they stop spending, they stop travelling, they stop investing, and economies stagnate.

So how do we stop it all? I've no idea and I'm not sure anyone does.

The powers-that-be have allowed the Syrian war to wreak havoc for five years. Even before then, there was Iraq, Afghanistan. There's turmoil in Nigeria, Sudan, Somalia, and in many others.

There's a lot of money to be made in selling weapons, fighter jets, and warships, and the materials for bombs that kill innocent people trying to catch a flight home in Brussels, or enjoying a rock concert in Paris.

Is any world leader making a sincere and sustained effort to bring an end to this mess? Will the profiteers allow them to succeed? Will the radicals ever stop their fight to bring us all back to the Stone Age?

I'm not painting a very hopeful picture here, but all I'm saying is that nothing will be achieved by being afraid, by closing borders, by staying at home, and turning our backs on strangers in need.

All we can do is get on with our lives, and show compassion to those who need it. Leave the sorting out of the global mess to those who created it.

Wexford People

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