West traps itself by politicizing lone wolf

Source:Global Times Published: 2016/6/15 0:58:01

Right after the weekend bloodshed at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida, late on Monday a French police commander was stabbed to death in his home near Paris and his partner was also killed. The perpetrator, killed during the police assault on the couple's home, reportedly claimed allegiance to the Islamic State (IS).

Has a terror war in the form of lone wolf attacks already kicked off? Fifteen years ago, when planes piloted by terrorists hit the World Trade Center in New York, terror attacks started becoming a nightmare for the whole world, which then translated into actual warfare when the US dropped tons of bombs in Afghanistan and Iraq.

But now, after the regime changes in Afghanistan and Iraq and Osama bin Laden was killed, victory remains remote. Terror attacks have turned from organized battles to lone-wolf guerrilla warfare. Terror is ubiquitous yet untraceable.

The Western media tends to look at the motives of a lone wolf from beliefs and values as if politically or religiously analyzing these people will lead us to the root of the attacks. Or this may bring people together under the same values against terrorists.

After the terror attacks, some media often defines them as attacking liberal society and targeting the values and faith adhered to by US and European society.

Labeling all motives behind terror attacks as assaults against values and beliefs doesn't mean we can define them all in the same league. But this may spur on other people with extreme mindsets to act. This is what terrorist organizations like the IS want keenly.

A bigger danger lies in whether defining a society as liberal or not indicates double-standards in identifying terrorists. If Western countries or countries that adopt the Western model are classified as non-liberal societies, terror attacks on them will be interpreted differently. Hence some Western media accuses developing countries like China of suppression when they enact anti-terror operations.

These people are called terrorists not because of their religion, nationality or race, but because their actions have breached basic human morality. They should be considered enemies of humanity.

Currently, Western countries are confronted by plights including dismal economies, dysfunctional political governance and public rifts. Highlighting the ideological nature of terrorists may win some public support, but will also ahelp spread extremism and terrorist organizations.

Increased global cooperation will lead to more effective anti-terror campaigns. Many in the Western media realize the importance after the latest attacks in the US and France. But differentiating anti-terror actions based on ideologies limits how far Western countries can go in global cooperation against terrorism.


Posted in: Editorial

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