Deadly pinpricks

The Russian ambassador to Turkey was shot dead yesterday, the Globe and Mail reports, lon105_turkey_russian_ambasadorby an off-duty police officer who shouted “Don’t forget Aleppo” and “Allahu Akbar” as he opened fire … [and] … The Russian foreign ministry confirmed the death of envoy Andrei Karlov, calling it a “terrorist act.” Relations between Moscow and Ankara have long been strained over the conflict in Syria, with the two support opposing sides in the war.

Likewise, yesterday, the Globe and Mail also reported that “A truck rammed into a 4221396001_5254222926001_5254201383001-vscrowded Christmas market in central Berlin on Monday evening, killing at least nine people as it tore through tables and wooden stands. Many others were injured. Police said a suspect believed to be the driver was arrested nearby and a passenger was dead … [and] … Police said they were still investigating whether the crash was deliberate. But it came less than a month after a U.S. State Department calling for caution in markets and other public places, saying extremist groups including Islamic State and al-Qaida were focusing “on the upcoming holiday season and associated events” … [and, further] … Islamic State and al-Qaida have both called on followers to use trucks in particular to attack public places.

As both stories evolve it is more and more clear that they are the result of Islamist terrorists trying to make Europe and America pay for what is happening in the Middle East.

But, I remain convinced that radical Islamists, mostly from the Middle East and West Asia, are NOT existential security threats: deadly? yes, but not the sort of thing for which we need to wage war to secure vengeance. The correct solution, albeit the one least likely to be adopted, is to isolate, even blockade very large portions of the North Africa, Middle East and West Asia and allow nothing, especially weapons and technology and information in, and, equally, nothing, including oil and people out, until the peoples of those regions have solved their social, religious and political problems in a satisfactory way.

The correct focus must remain to deterring Russia from making any dangerous, opportunistic moves against Eastern European NATO members. Vladimir Putin, not some homegrown, lone wolf terrorist, threatens the peace and security of the world.

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