The manhunt that started last December in Brussels ended yesterday in tragedy. After the capture of fugitive Salah Abdeslam on March 18 in a Brussels suburb, the remaining terrorists apparently decided to escape an imminent arrest by blowing themselves up at the Departure gates of the Brussels airport and in a Metro station close to the city centre (my interpretation of the facts).
Horror, again. Groups of young people, European citizens of Arabic origins, plan and execute mass murders in the heart of Europe. Terrorism aims at destabilizing and provoking strong political reactions. Their political objective is to generate hatred against Muslims in European societies and many people find it hard not to fall in this trap.
Young idealists killing dozens of innocent people, is it new? Look at the table below. Despite the recent scaring episodes, from Paris to Brussels, we are quite safe nowadays. Before there were no jihadists. There were comunists, independentists, right-wing extremists and all sorts of religious terrorist organizations. The table is taken from an article of the Huffington Post.
Why are we so afraid today? Because we have experienced peace and, maybe, because we travel much more than in the 1970s.
We got peace and we all desperately want to preserve it. But we also got democracy and freedom, great achievements that too many people consider expendable. The more Western societies overreact to terrorism by restricting civil rights, the more successful each terrorist act becomes. A permanent police state does not zero the risk of attacks. Attacks are happening because there is lack of communication and information sharing between nationl police and judiciary authorities in Europe. This is a technical problem that still has to be fixed and has nothing to do with taking extreme political measures.
To you that twitted #StopIslam messages to attack Islam, I ask: would have helped Italy to expel the millions of Comunist Party supporters because of the terrorist attacks carried out by the Red Brigades? Would have helped the UK to expel and keep under investigation all Irish people living on British soil? I want an answer and I am sure it is going to be embarrassing.
You will find more statistics at Statista