Rheims Massacre: Unbowed By Terror, West Must Stand Firm

WITH REPORTS flooding in that two of the suspected gunmen responsible for the slaughter of staff at French satire magazine Charlie Hebdo have now taken hostages to use as human shields, it is more important than ever that Western nations remain resolutely unbowed — and unchanged in their way of life — in the face of increasing atrocities committed in the name of Islam: a one-fingered salute is the only response such obscenities deserve.

I don’t intend to go to any great detail on this issue; the massacre of 12 staff on Wednesday at the headquarters of satire magazine Charlie Hebdo in Rheims in France was an unspeakable and unforgivable act of violence.

I simply want to make a few points, for as I write tonight there are fresh reports that two (of three) suspects being pursued by French Police in relation to Wednesday’s act of terror have now taken hostages to use as human shields; this issue has some way to run, and in posting this evening my intention is more to share some thoughts pending a more detailed response at some later stage.

But the attack — by three suspected Islamic fugitives, supposedly acting in the name of Allah — represents a more concerted and organised strike against a Western target than the so-called “lone wolf” attack in Sydney last month.

It also represents the point at which civilised Western societies can no longer ignore the barbaric threat of senseless violence imported into their communities under the auspices of “tolerance” and “compassion:” radical Islam, put bluntly, poses an existential threat to the Western way of life that must be erased from our midst.

The attack in Rheims was apparently made on a disturbing pretext: Charlie Hebdo is known worldwide for its parodies and satirical cartoons of Muslim fundamentalism (and a whole lot of other things besides) and the response, with guns and at the cost of a dozen lives, was a direct and contrived challenge to the right of free expression in free societies.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott — who first coined the phrase “death cult” to describe the barbarous junta that is Islamic State, presently laying waste to huge swathes of the Middle East to impose a strict interpretation of militant Islam — has again hit the nail on the head with his declaration that radical Islamic insurgents “hate” us, meaning the West: they hate our way of life, they hate our freedoms, they hate our secularity, and they hate our freedom of speech.

He has also emphasised the fact that Islamic State (and its adherents and followers, across the globe and embedded in Western societies) have declared themselves to be at war with the Western world: and this, in tandem with the very real and malicious hatred expressed toward us, means we cannot afford to concede anything in response.

He is absolutely right, and this mentality merits nothing more than a one-fingered salute in reply; as most readers know there has been an outpouring of rage in social media these past couple of days, but by far the best perspective I have seen is a simple one that conveys a message that few could quibble with.

SAGE ADVICE…the culture of violent, radical Islam has no place in free societies.

It’s been reported that one of the first responses from the deeply traumatised survivors at Charlie Hebdo — whose colleagues were apparently murdered for the “crime” of publishing cartoons that mocked the Islamic religion — was a vow to keep publishing the cartoons in question. And so they should.

Abbott, along with outraged leaders across the free world, has rightly made the point that to do otherwise would be to accede to the threat of terrorism and to reward those who instigate its foul deeds with victory; it is critical that free societies do not fall into the trap of censoring expression under the threat of violent retribution.

And there is another consideration: if harmless japes of the kind published by Charlie Hebdo are discontinued in the face of evil actions by organised, savage Islamic thuggery, what — with an eye to the strictest possible interpretation of the Koran — might follow?

Before long, everything from girls in bikinis to certain TV programmes, to restrictions on just about anything women can do and to the rights all free people enjoy under the rule of law — and anything and everything in between — will come into play, as yet more violence demands yet more concessions and appeasement to avert them.

Of course, any kind of censorship made under the duress of this kind of lawless viciousness would merely be the tip of the iceberg: and of Charlie Hebdo, and countless other publishing and media outlets like it around the globe, encouragement and applause — not cowering submission — is the message ordinary and decent folk must convey, along with their condolences, their grief, and their justifiably unbridled fury at the horror that has been done in France.

I want to share with readers an article that appeared in today’s issue of the Herald Sun in Melbourne today, which is basically a wake-up call to the finger shakers, the compassion babblers, the tolerance brigade, and the bleeding heart bullshit artists who preach “tolerance” toward the kind of people who were responsible for Wednesday’s horror in Rheims: these people are usually the first (and loudest) in their “compassionate” responses to incidents such as that which befell Charlie Hebdo and its tragic staff, but they are also the loudest — and often the most persistent — in their apologies for (and defence of) minority communities that breed the hatreds that lead to precisely the kind of thing we are now seeing with greater frequency, and on a more and more widespread basis.

But it could just as easily have appeared in the pages of an equivalent publication in Paris, or London, or Berlin, or New York: Western countries across the world are increasingly being confronted by the murderous excesses of radical Islam. And in every instance, there are apologists who would sooner concern themselves with the rights of bloody murderers than with the lives of those who have been imperilled and/or slaughtered with neither pity nor compunction.

In recent times, we have witnessed a “lone wolf” attack on Police in Melbourne; the siege in Sydney prior to Christmas; the beheading of a soldier in London; and now the attack on innocent journalists and their colleagues in France.

These cannot be regarded as isolated incidents, and — whilst they might lack the obvious forethought of, say, the Al-Qaeda plot that hit the United States on 11 September 2001 — they must be viewed as part of a series of co-ordinated attacks against Western targets that will only become more widespread if met with nothing more substantial than abject capitulation.

I will continue to watch the fallout from Wednesday’s atrocity and the unbelievable sequel that appears to be playing out, at the time of writing, through a hostage siege situation; this column minutes its condolences and sympathies to the families who lost loved ones in Rheims on Wednesday, but also to their surviving colleagues — particularly those who were forced to endure watching their friends and workmates being blown apart before their very eyes, and who now must live with the abominable memory of that event.

But the time for a wake-up call is now.

And I think we are at the point where — when it comes to nations who enjoy common freedoms and liberties, and whence no succour to tyranny and oppression is given — if one is attacked, all of us are attacked, and feel the wound just as keenly wherever in the world it has been inflicted.

Anyone who quibbles at the citizens of their own countries being jailed on their return from fighting “for Allah” in the Middle East — and other, similar measures aimed at rooting out the less desirable elements from the Muslim communities who are otherwise perfectly welcome — should take heed at what has happened in France.

Clearly, the ugly spectre of radicalised, fundamentalist Islam has no place in the decent societies of the law-abiding and the free.

This sleeper issue is about to become the elephant in the room in Western polities; and just as it must be repelled in practice — forcibly, if need be — it is also going to require mainstream political forces to adopt harder and more effective strategies to deal with it, rather than a form of words that urges caution, and understanding, but offers little by way of action to redress it.

If they don’t, there are plenty of extremist, far-Right organisations that will leap at the opportunity to take their place, however distasteful such opportunism in the face of senseless slaughter might be.

Just look at France’s Front National party, founded by Jean-Marie Le Pen and now led by his daughter, Marine. As perverse as it sounds, this racist right-wing lynch mob has had its best week this week for soliciting memberships in years.

And that — with similar developments elsewhere in the West — is a whole other problem altogether.

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8 thoughts on “Rheims Massacre: Unbowed By Terror, West Must Stand Firm

  1. Meanwhile the cowards of the left retreat into their holes. Jellyfish spines the lot of them. I’ve been watching various news channels on this siege, and as always the Muslim ‘representatives’ are all trying to downplay the elephant in the room – ISLAM.
    The left of course, seem to cheer for the demise of western values, which is funny as pictures emerge of social events where chardonnay and expensive cars are ever present at the anti west functions.

    The ALP and the Greens are remarkably silent, probably taking their directions from the serial do-nothing men, Bill Shorten and his boss, Barack Obama.

    No one likes wars, but the freedoms that have been hard fought for over the last century look like going down the toilet and into the 13th century if these Islamic extremist cretins push on with their belief in destruction of the human race.

  2. Even though the terrorists who murdered the staff at Charlie Hebdo are totally reprehensible, and just one more manifestation of the pernicious nature of a religion populated by intolerant psychopaths, keep in mind that the magazine is of much the same mindset as the ABC and Fairfax, with its own left wing adamant prejudices. Nor were its parodies particularly clever and they were far from sophisticated. The magazine has lambasted Christianity and other western institutions with gay abandon for years, and with arrogant impunity derived from the Freedom of the Press it has abused from the outset, while doing its best to silence the speech of those with views this arrogant organ decries. Yet the Jewish editorial staff has not targeted its own Judaic traditions with the same puerile venom with which it has attacked other religions.

    Ironically, Charlie Hebdo was also critical of anti-immigration groups and individuals like Marine Le Pen of the National Front, and is likely to have made others of similar ilk to Hebdo more chary of supporting Muslim migration and to have roused stronger opposition against their own ‘religion’ and its adherents. Though the jihadists’ actions were appalling, they could have chosen targets more worthy of protection.

  3. I noticed Abbott, Cameron and Hollande have stood up and said they continue to protect and observe free speech in their respective countries. Would that be the free speech they have already taken away from us? The free speech that allows the Goverment to arrest people for naughty tweets that are ‘islamophobic’? Or the free speech in Sweden where people are not allowed to discuss islamic migration at all?
    The politicians and media do realise I hope that in not so small ways they are all responsible for this latest outrage by continuously changing the laws in their countries in favour of muslim sensibilities. Sueing and firebombing didn’t work so they just turned it up a notch, what else do you expect?

    Incidentally, I don’t agree with calling Le Pen’s group extreme right or far right wing either. It was the Labor party who brought in the White Australia Policy and it is the Left that is racist; always has been, always will be. Opposition to mass immigration of any group is completely normal across society and has nothing to do with the left or right of politics. The left use this to silence any disent because most people do not wish to be called far right or extreme.

    If our politicians and media were truly serious they would immediately implement true free speech and actually start using it in normal discourse. Section 18C would be gone and they would all agree to never use the muslim brotherhood term, ‘islamophobic’ ever again to try and stifle legitimate criticism.
    They will do absolutely none of this; we are still on our own in our own countries waiting for the next outrage to come.

    • What possible reason could there be to be Islamophobic? Is not Islam the religion of peace? Anyway, we don’t want to be rude, just to save our lives and the fabric of our infidel societies, do we?

      • Actually, though, it was Harold Holt who brought in the end of the White Australia policy as part of his “Going all the way with LBJ,”who brought in the US Immigration Reform Act, initially to facilitate the settlement of Indochinese refugees. Of course, the ALP and the other ‘progressives’latched on to such reforms to build up a voting bloc of third world paupers they hoped to manipulate.

  4. I have read the forgoing words with a great deal of interest. While some writers have been a tad adventurous by expressing their displeasure with everything from the actions of the Islamic extremists in France to the curtailing, by National leaders, to Muslims in general. Some even dared to hint that there may be a need for a solution to the Islamic problem which has been foisted on the Western World of late.
    The thing that struck me the most was that every one identified, in one way or another, the short comings in our own democracy, being successive PM’s, the far left, the greens, Labor etc., etc., and the list goes on.

    NOT ONE WRITER STOOD UP TO BE COUNTED BY UTTERING A VIABLE SOLUTION.

    Are we subconsciously still worried about being called racists; or perhaps we do not want to offending a religion that is hell bent on the total destruction of every person that does not agree with the teachings of Mohammed?. Have we the people been brain washed and are now to scared to call a spade a spade?

    Correct me if I am wrong, but the recent actions of Islamic extremists sounds, to me, a lot like the start of an Islamic military campaign to over throw the democracy that we & others throughout the world currently know and enjoy. Ultimately extremists want an Islamic based dictatorship, similar to that of Hitler, Mussolini and various others dictators throughout the centuries, to be installed and policed by Shari Law.

    Wake up Australia, shout at our politicians that we the people of Australia are not happy! Clearly defined policies need to be enacted in Law now, that deal specifically with extremists of all ilks, but expressly with the current batch of wackos!
    There is no place for politeness , tolerance or understanding when it comes to dealing with extremists who just want to disrupt, mame & kill infidels!

  5. Please try to remember that all waves of immigration, and they are waves, have introduced countless people who would never integrate but would strive to perpetuate the culture of their homeland even when that culture was changing where they came from. But their children were expected to attend secular schools and as a result became integrated. What we have here is people with an unwarranted belief in their cultural superiority who become alienated by being ‘educated’ apart from mainstream society and nothing can be said because we are muzzled by appeasement minded politicians who refuse to confront the common connection which is obvious to most people. We have a right to expect that all migrants should be accepted on condition that they accept our secular society and those who do not should be resettled where they came from and spend their energy creating the society they want there rather than trying to change things here. This gives plenty of scope for those who really want a better but harmonious future to not be tarred with the general brush. 18 c needs to go sooner rather than later so get to it Brandis and do something you were elected for. Remember that (quoting Reagan) detente is what the farmer has with the turkey until the day before Thanksgiving! For the government we have that will be the next election.

  6. While Sniper and Rasputin make some good points, they also miss some vital ones.

    Modern Western society and it’s values are different from all other societies in history in a very basic way. We assume innocence until proof of guilt. Rather than the accused having to exonerate themselves, the Crown has to prove the person did the crime. In the current case it means that to be true to the values we claim to represent, then no Muslim in Australia is an extremist or extremist sympathiser until proven otherwise.

    This is a reason that other cultures have more violent “anti government” protests, (aside from actually having crappy governments) the protesters are working from the belief that the government is horribly wrong and will believe that until proven otherwise. Which is why they can “simmer” while people wait for the government to prove itself innocent. We see a remnant of the “Accusation is guilt” concept in our own thinking today. How often have we seen a news report of an arrest for a terrible crime and said “So they got the guy that did it.”? Well “they” didn’t, “they” have arrested a person and a court is yet to decide guilt. People protesting outside a court with their nooses etc should remember that they are effectively calling for the murder of an innocent person.

    Our “Presumption of Innocence” is both a great leap forward in human rights and an Achilles Heel.

    Rasputin points to the idea that students are educated apart from mainstream society, however this would be true for any religious school really as most schools are secular. Are students in Islamic schools taught that their religion is destined to rule the world? Quite possibly as that is exactly what the Koran says. While this may seem problematical, we should remember that many schools whose name is “St. Somebody or other” is teaching kids that the Pope is infallible, snakes speak and all species of animal can be carried on one boat.

    I don’t know the answer to the problem of the extremists and I suspect nobody does. In truth there are many answers and some are quite simple and very, very permanent. However I think most of us would prefer an answer that didn’t send our values into the toilet. If we lose our values in the fight, what have we left to fight for?

    We should also remember that there can be no negotiations with the extremists, their worldview is that the only thing standing between them and Paradise is you, personally, being alive. Islam is a fatalistic religion where good works and prayer don’t necessarily get you into Paradise, it’s a total crap shoot. But there is one, guaranteed way to get in, express lane, and that is to die while killing infidels. Now if you really believe in a Paradise and really believe that all infidels will go to hell anyway, then there is no bar to killing infidels, is there? The morals of an Islamic extremist cannot be judged by Western values.

    Radical Islam, in fact Islam itself exists only because the West allows it. The West has the power to exterminate Islam but quite rightly doesn’t want to as we believe in freedom. We limit that freedom to “not being a danger to others” and use proportionate responses. Unfortunately others will interpret the act of “preferring not to” as “won’t” and will step up their campaign. At some point extremism and those who support it will move into the category “Can no longer be allowed to exist” and they won’t. One serious WMD attack on a major Western city and nobody is going to care how many “civilians” are around the extremist camps. If you don’t think it possible just remember that most of the Sarin, VX and Mustard dumps in Iraq were found in the areas now controlled by isis.

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