We live in a permanent climate of fear these days, especially since the western leaders have decided to attack the terrorist organization IS(IL) in Iraq and Syria. On a daily basis we get to hear in the media that a terror threat is more evident than ever before, that the army should be deployed on train-stations and the streets and how radicalism and jihadists are an existential threat to the free west. Politicians call for decisive actions and suggest all kind of ‘anti-terrorism’ measures. During a speech at the end of September before the United Nations, the British prime-minister David Cameron said that “non-violent extremism” was just as dangerous as terrorism and should be eradicated with all means the State has at its disposal. From our southern neighbors Armand De Decker, the Belgian envoy for the UN general assembly, suggested that returned jihadists should be locked up in moral re-education camps.
But what exactly are we talking about? In the “Terrorism situation and trend report 2014” of Europol we can read that with the 152 terrorist attacks in Europe during 2013 only seven people died. This in contrast to the many thousands of people who die each year because of traffic-accidents or work-related accidents in the EU. Moreover, only with two of these terrorist attacks religious extremism (jihadism) played a role. If we look at these statistics, it seems the mass hysteria surrounding extremism and a potential terrorist attack is completely unjustified. The nature of man is simply that he has more fear for the unlikely than for the likely. Especially if this fear is fueled on a daily basis by the media and the internet. The daily calls for horror in the media and from the government, have created an irrational climate of fear that forestalls any rational debate about the proposed countermeasures against ‘extremism’.
This is of course very convenient for the State, since they let the ordinary people pay for the economic crisis they – the political and economic elites – have caused themselves. The permanent fear for extremism and terrorism seems to be the perfect lightning-rod for the unprecedented social demolition by the parliament. To privatize the profits and collectivize the charges, democratic methods will not suffice. To make this attack on their own civilians succeed, they need a repressive police-state. So our people is not so much threatened by terrorism or extremism, but by the willingness of our people to let themselves be intimidated by fear, in an attempt by our government to use this so they can take away our freedom. While the State makes it appear as if they are protecting us against terrorism, which they created themselves, they in fact are using it as an excuse to impose authoritarian and repressive structures. With this the celebration of freedom seems to have come to a definitive end.
If we read between the lines of the politicians and other policymakers, their true motives become clear. The specter that surrounds terms like extremism and terrorism are the product of a certain ideology. Extremism is a term that is used to describe the ideas or actions that are considered extreme by its critics. So it is a completely subjective term. On the contrary, terrorism is committing serious violence without a legal ground, to achieve a political goal. Instead of using these words in their original context, their meaning is evermore extended and these terms are becoming more and more connected to each other and made synonymous. Now they are used to point out a violation of certain norms and values, which are contrary to those of the State. Dissidents are branded as extremists by the State and extremism has become synonymous to terrorism. By demonizing, criminalizing and de-humanizing people by using these terms, the State is able to justify silencing them.
It is exactly in this context that we have to see the words of David Cameron and other heads of State. By equating ‘non-violent extremism’ to terrorism, they pave the way for a totalitarian police-state, in which anybody who isn’t a model-citizen and who has a dissident view can be prosecuted. Up until today the measures taken by the State to counter terrorism, have had no single significant effect. The ‘war on terror’ only resulted in more terrorism and the first al-Qaida caliphate the world has ever known. This is because the State is not defending itself against terrorist disaster, but against its own civilians. The totalitarian police-state is already lurking around the corner. The true enemy is the State, who oppresses us and takes away our freedom. The real terrorists are in The Hague and Brussels. And we have to stop them before it is too late!