Mobilize public backing against terrorism

Source:Global Times Published: 2014-5-3 23:58:01

The level of security was elevated across the nation during the May Day holidays. The extensive security in the Chinese capital reminded many tourists of heavily guarded Beijing during the Olympic Games six years ago.

Armed police on patrol could be often seen in big Chinese cities, with the threat of terrorism no longer a taboo subject in everyday conversations of the ordinary people. The whole society has shown unprecedented energy to support the deployment of anti-terrorism measures.

The latest terrorist attack at the Urumqi South Railway Station on Wednesday sounded an alarm to Chinese people. Before the incident, Chinese President Xi Jinping gave instructions during his inspection tour of Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region, ordering authorities and security forces to impose zero-tolerance crackdown on terrorists. After the incident, some Uyghur college students jointly released a condemnation declaration, showing the unity of the entire nation in the fight against terrorism.

Unlike the international anti-terrorism actions, China faces its unique challenges. It has to prioritize the harmony of different ethnic groups when countering terrorism. The Uyghur masses should not pay the price for the acts of only a handful of separatists and extremists. Every step China takes to fight terrorism must consider the effect it will have on the solidarity of the entire Chinese nation, in case anti-terrorism crackdown is smeared as certain kind of religious and ethnic repression.

Besides threat from terrorists, sympathy and support from the West for these terrorists are also barriers that hinder China to move faster on anti-terrorism fight.

But China also has its advantages in fighting terrorism. The nation's strength to mobilize the resources of the entire society and resolve to prioritize anti-terrorism action ensure a positive outcome.

The intensification of security will probably become a regular feature in big cities in China from now on. The public should support such a move, even at a higher cost in terms of economy and personal convenience.

The suppression of the rise of terrorism not only demands political and forceful measures, but more importantly, requires the consensus of the Chinese nation as a whole to shatter the illusions of the terrorists.

We should oppose people who, under the pretext of terrorist attacks,  stir certain political debates that somehow have nothing to do with anti-terrorism. Such debates can be manipulated by the wrong people and make the terrorists believe that there are people sympathizing with them, and that they are able to cause political frictions within the nation and stir up troubles.

In many Western countries, the endeavor to fight terrorism is labeled as a war. China doesn't give it such a name, but terrorists have already become an enemy of the State. Physical and mental crackdowns are both needed to deal with this enemy.

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