The West is in mourning and despair over the deaths in Paris and it shows it. This honours the West, this honours us. What's more the West is in mourning and despair over not knowing what it should do. This doesn't show but rather hides behind aggressive gestures. This doesn't honour the West, and this is dangerous.
From fear to war?
Talk is now of war. But haven't Europeans and Americans been leading wars in the Middle East non-stop for the past fourteen years? And even before the 13th November hadn't French planes already begun dropping bombs?
Supposedly, there is now a new alliance with Russia in the fight against Isis. But isn't Russia already fighting in Syria? And if they haven't been targeting Isis up until now and just fighting for Assad, why should this now change?
The French President has vowed to be "merciless" in his pursuit of the terrorists. It's understandable - he's angry and he believes he has to show strength. But did France and the West, at any point, ever show too much mercy in North Africa? Did the invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan or the intervention in Libya end in chaos because the West was too considerate?
Unlike the West Isis has a plan: it wants to provoke Europeans, Americans and more recently Russia into large-scale retaliations to the point where it descends into chaos; Isis is pushing for the West to target them with air attacks because it knows the collateral damage which inevitably results. And it knows that any loss through collateral damage is to their gain. Bombs kill terrorists – and produce new ones. The Guardian reported this week that American drone attacks in Pakistan often killed twenty times more people than intended.
If Isis actually welcomes these air attacks, how are these air attacks then supposed to help fight Isis?
Shortly after the Paris attacks the West sat down with Islamistic Saudi Arabia at the G-20 summit in Antalya to discuss how they can work together to fight Islamistic terror. Of course, based on some twisted logic it could be worth trying to fight Islamists with Islamists, in fact they've been trying it for decades. The first group to appear was Al-Qaida led by the Saudi, Osama bin Laden. Then came "Islamic State" sponsored and sustained by sources in Saudi Arabia. This year the Brookings Institution counted the number of Isis followers on Twitter and the result: most Isis supporters, by a large margin, come from one country: Saudi Arabia.
How often can you try to use Beelzebub to fight the devil?
Fourteen years of war on terror and what has come out of it all? More war, more chaos, more terror. Where once there was Al-Qaida, we now have the more powerful and more brutal Isis. Where once states harboured terrorists, terrorists now destroy states. And we are now seeing something which hadn't been seen before the start of this glorious war on terror: countless refugees trying to make it to Europe.
And are we to now repeat it all over again? And as if it's lost its mind, the West is once again attempting to peel an egg with a sledgehammer.
Is it not about time to take a step back and carefully examine Western strategy in the Middle East and indeed our entire relationship with the Islamic world? And pose the deeply-worrying question why so many Muslims feel hurt and humiliated by the West and consequently, why there is a never-ending stream of people turning to terrorism?