Why Europe needs to learn Israel's security lessons

THERE’S a mulish reluctance within the mindset of Europe’s elites that the sporadic, yet snowballing stream of terror atrocities can be explained away as…well, who knows, because nobody’s given the outrages a politically-correct handle.
So, for the time being, these are dubbed ‘lone-wolf’ attacks – even if later evidence disproves this – carried out by non-Europeans, who, by coincidence, are of Middle Eastern or North African descent.
However, there’s no mention of the ‘M’ word, which is unofficially verboten, taboue or whatever means ‘forbidden’ in local lingos.
Governments know the merest hint of it would only further antagonize the continent’s expanding you-know-who minority and tarnish their image of victimhood, since – as mainstream politicians remind ad nauseum – the vast majority follow ‘a religion of peace’ and simply seek refuge in a benevolent West.
Therefore perish thoughts that any of these huddled masses have the slightest inclination of converting their host countries into franchises of some pipe-dream caliphate (or shouldn’t I say ‘caliphate’ either?).
Plus, any notions to the contrary will only play to the prejudices of the Far Right. And Europe’s liberal intelligentsia fears National Front leader, Marine Le Pan, being crowned the next queen of France as an even worse, worst-case scenario than Donald Trump elected the USA’s 45th president.
At least, Left-leaning media apologists inhabits the same ostrich-like universe of denial as the polity and echo the same message of tolerance bordering on appeasement.
The BBC, for instance, was certainly coy about stating the blindingly obvious following the ghastly event on Nice’s Promenade des Anglais, even after a French-Tunisian was ID’d as the perpetrator of the truck-ramming that slaughtered 84 and injured hundreds.
And the discomfort of German authorities was palpable, as they tried to downplay two gruesome attacks in quick succession: first, an Afghan teenager tried to butcher a train carriage full of travelers, then a failed asylum-seeker from Syria died in a botched suicide bombing outside a Bavarian pop festival, injuring 12 bystanders.
Yet no official spokesperson uttered the M-word, not even when Isis/Daesh claimed sponsorship of the atrocities. Nor was a ‘not in our name’ outcry heard from the migrant community.
Meanwhile, despite the appalling carnage, there must have been an audible sigh of relief in high places when the headbanger who massacred nine kids in Munich was revealed as a devotee of Norwegian neo-Nazi and mass murderer, Anders Breivik.
That the deranged, suicidal killer, David Sonboly, was of Iranian extraction was immaterial to the narrative.
So, yes it was terrible; but, no, it wasn’t terrorism.
However, the chilling execution of an 84-year-old priest in a church in rural France by two jihadi monsters, later shot dead by police, elevated terror to a hitherto unimaginable height.
People already fearful – and unconvinced by the show of force from soldiers and paramilitary cops patrolling streets – felt a sense of utter revulsion even earlier horrors didn’t equal.
If they didn’t already know this was no longer the ‘free’ Europe over 70 years of peace and prosperity had delivered them, people realize it now. And their trust in Establishment politicians preserving a once comfy equilibrium inched nearer exasperation point.
Manuel Valls, France’s prime minister, didn’t aid the state’s case when he said, ‘Times have changed and France is going to get used to living with terrorism.’
There was more than a whiff of surrender, not to say moral bankruptcy, in that admission.
So small wonder, then, more voters are turning to populist firebrands, like Le Pen, for hard-line solutions.
As for the barbarities, they are morphing from bloody spectaculars, like the Paris massacres last November, into less sophisticated, though more frequent, acts of premeditated barbarity, all nonetheless inspired by the same, twisted politico-religious ideology intent on crushing the West into submission.
Which is why most savvy folk know their overwhelmed security services can only play catch-up.
Yet, there is one place on earth where terrorism is being beaten back, if not entirely eliminated, and no white flag is countenanced.
Norway’s Aftenpost columnist, Klaus Wivel, alluded to it, recently writing, ‘We have more in common with the Israelis than we like to admit [and] when we look in the mirror, we discover that we are all Israelis now.’
So, after seven decades of reaping a peace dividend while panning the Jewish state for having the chutzpah to defend itself, Europe now faces the dilemma: do we simply continue to accept the inevitable and fill more body bags – or do we look to Israel for solutions?
The answer should be pragmatically self-evident and there is some evidence parts of Europe are adopting tactics that could almost be lifted from Israel’s survival manual.
Except they run counter to double standards hypocritical Europe applies to the Jewish state alone.
Therefore, whereas Israel builds a wall, which radically reduces terror attacks, Europeans only erect border fences to control refugees; French gendarmes rightly gun down terrorists, but when an Israeli uses lethal force to halt a stabbing or car-ramming Europeans damn this as ‘extra-judicial execution’; and, while Europe is under attack from terrorists, Israel only confronts ‘militants’ with a justifiable cause.
Nevertheless, is Europe finally waking up to the reality that replicating the Jewish state’s robust, ever-evolving strategy to protect its people – the first duty of government – is its only realistic option?
As the Wall Street Journal’s Brett Stephens emphasized, ‘The best guide to how Europe can find its way to safety is the country it has spent the best part of the last 50 years lecturing and vilifying: Israel. For now, it’s the only country in the West that refuses to risk the safety of its citizens on someone else’s notion of human rights or altar of peace.’
But, if Europe does copycat Israel, like the ‘M’ word, don’t dare mention it.