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Maaz al-Kassasbeh burned alive by ISIS – the animals want us to sink to their level, we must not

Tom Winnifrith
Tuesday 3 February 2015

Why does ISIS exist? Because the meddling of the West created it. We ousted Saddam Hussein and created a power vacuum but also the alienation of Sunnis from the power centres in Iraq. Then we meddled to oust President Assad in Syria arming his opponents, including many who now fight for ISIS.

Sixty years of Western meddling to bring about regime change in the Middle East (I go back to Iran in the fifties) has made the West ever more hated in the region. Meanwhile the trail of death we have left in recent years through our illegal wars (Iraq) and tinkering (Syria) has acted as a fantastic recruiting sergeant among disaffected Muslim youth in the West for vile extremists such as ISIS.

Today ISIS has hit a new low by burning Jordanian pilot Maaz al-Kassasbeh alive. It hopes by doing this to get both the Jordanian regime and the West to over-react.

Jordan is an artificial country created by the West, notably Britain. The vast majority of its – mainly very poor – population are Palestinians. It should be part of a Palestinian State. A tiny minority from the Hashemite tribe have ruled since we put them on the throne. They are rich. The biggest one day massacre of Palestinians in history occurred in the early 1970s when the father of the current monarch bloodily butchered many thousand Palestinians who wanted democracy and economic justice.

When Jordan reacts by arranging hasty trials of Islamist prisoners in its jails and executing those folks many in the West will cheer. That they will be cheering the way that an ally of us ignores basic principles of justice in allowing full and fair trials before engaging in State sponsored executions. I fear there is just a lust for revenge blood.

How will ordinary Jordanians react? By showing support for the Western stooges who rule over them in these barbarous acts? I sense many will feel more alienated and more likely to support the Islamists.

Should the West throw in more of a military arsenal and “bomb ISIS back into the Stone age?” We could. We will kill many women and children in the process. Innocent Moslems. Perhaps ISIS will be wiped out as a regular military force. But if we also slaughter the innocents we will only act as the greatest recruiting Sergeant possible. We will make our own lives here in the UK ever less safe.

I know that my Moslem staff are shocked by today’s events. They are appalled.  It will make them ever more convinced that the Western way of life is better than life under ISIS. And in terms of winning back the hearts and minds of the Muslim community here, ISIS are doing that for us. Muslims in the UK will be appalled by the fate of poor Maaz al-Kassasbeh.

We should respond by stressing how much better we are than ISIS. That means pressing Jordan not to arrange hasty show trials and executions. That means apologising for our illegal invasions of Moslem lands, putting those responsible (step forward Tony Blair) on trial and withdrawing all our forces.

If our own citizens go fight with ISIS I have no problem in stripping them of British nationality. They are fighting for a self-proclaimed state that has murdered innocent Britons. They thus lose the right to reside here. That is only fair.

I understand those who seek revenge, who lust for ISIS blood. I cannot say that I shed any tears when an ISIS fighter dies but a civilised society will not react by stooping to the level of ISIS. That is not only because it would be barbaric to do so but also because that is exactly what ISIS wants us to do.

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About Tom Winnifrith
Tom Winnifrith is the editor of When he is not harvesting olives in Greece, he is (planning to) raise goats in Wales.
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