Ankara bombs stress danger of extremism

Source:Global Times Published: 2015-10-11 23:58:01

Two bombings near the main train station in Turkey's capital Ankara Saturday have inflicted huge casualties with at least 95 people dead and more than 200 injured. Turkey, unprepared in the recent months, has been heavily targeted by terrorists.

Turkey's ambiguous attitude toward certain terrorist groups has been under fire all the time. Therefore, it is quite hard to understand why it has become the latest bitter prey of terrorism.

Turkey is deeply enmeshed in the geopolitics of the Middle East, and its inextricable links with the past Ottoman Empire have given the Turks broad recognition of pan-Turkism. There is a tendency among some Turkish groups that a Turkish bloodline prevails over truth and justice when it comes to violence committed by pan-Turkish people. As a result, it has caused the discrepancy between Turkey and the international community over the classification of terrorist groups.

For example, some Turkish civil groups keep making irresponsible remarks on China's anti-terrorist activities in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region. Even the Turkish government yields and wavers due to social pressures. Ankara's attitude toward the notorious Islamic State (IS), which however opposes the Syrian government, is not as steadfast as the rest.

Any killing of civilians by terrorists should be condemned without any condition. We hope the Turkish government and society can gain a perspective to view the dangers of extremism. Extremism may vary in form and content, but it shares one similarity of denying any legally constituted authority. Extremism can escalate into terrorism in a flash. We should crack down on acts driven by both ideologies.

The developed world was the major target of terrorists in the early days. However, after the 9/11 attacks, the US and Europe have invested a lot of resources and managed to fend off most attacks. As a consequence, developing countries, which have limited funds and manpower, have been prioritized by terrorists. As for Ankara, the level of security around its train station is much lower than that of most European and American capitals. It requires more than some contingency plans or a bit more money and a few more police officers to ensure its security.

If a developing country is bogged down in the mire of terrorism, it will face graver threats than a developed country will. The global war on terror is basically dominated by the Western hemisphere, and there is less cooperation against terrorism among developing countries, which should seek for more common ground in this endeavor.

It was some Western countries that have abetted and indulged the rise of terrorism. Turkey must realize that it needs to put more efforts in regional cooperation including with China and Russia. Ankara should switch its mindset instead of relying solely on the West.

Posted in: Editorial

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