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Saturday, July 23, 2011

Goose and gander: a somethingveryspecificist strikes

This should not be a day for point-scoring, but inevitably the point-scoring is in full swing. And I really was pulled up short when I realised what my last post had been.

For today neither the BBC nor anyone else in the left-liberal universe has the slightest difficulty in naming the beliefs held by a man who has slaughtered 90 innocent victims.

Even though there is, as I write, no evidence that any other person - let alone an organisation - sharing those beliefs helped or encouraged him to commit mass murder. Even though his action seems utterly irrational even considered as a means to the ends which are assumed to have motivated it. Even though the outrage would appear at this point to have at least as much in common with the classic spree killing as with the kind of organized religio-political mass murder campaign with which we are familiar.

So there's an absolutely blatant double standard here. Branding everyone in Norway or anywhere else who is worried about Muslim immigration as a potential mass murderer is out of order unless it's OK to do the same to Muslims every time an Islamist bomb goes off. So far from doing that, the BBC fights shy of even applying the label "Islamist" to terrorists, for fear of implicating Islam as such. No such fear of implying guilt by association is restraining it today, though:-

'The BBC's Richard Galpin, near the island which is currently cordoned off by police, says that Norway has had problems with neo-Nazi groups in the past but the assumption was that such groups had been largely eliminated and did not pose a significant threat.'

Once again: this is before we have a shred of evidence that any group was involved.

We ought to be getting some consistency and it ought to be a consistent moderate Somethingveryspecificism rather than any variety of Nothinginparticularism. By all means let's put the far Right under the spotlight, though without imputing bogus guilt by association: it remains true that the EDL hasn't organised any spree killings and Geert Wilders hasn't planted any bombs. But let's also insist that the BBC must boldly go into the journalistic no-go area it has created around the relationship of terrorism to Islamism and Islamism to Islam. Not because we should want to demonise Muslims but because when lives are at stake we need and are entitled to understand what the problem is.

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