A fallen soldier
Photo Courtesy of: NY Daily News
THIS IS WHAT they want. This is where they are winning.
We awoke this morning to the truly scary news that a Canadian soldier had been shot dead at the war memorial in Ottawa and that the gunman had then stormed the marble halls of their Parliament House.
The instant, understandable, reaction worldwide: A terrorist attack. It may be the result of a planned attack ordered from abroad by Islamic State. Especially following the death of another Canadian soldier in uniform in a hit-run earlier this week. It may be the unhinged work of what Hollywood would glamorise as a ‘lone wolf’.
Whatever. It creates fear. A reminder that such violence can strike anywhere. Any time.
Any other time, you’d think it far-fetched for SKY to be running stern pictures (are there any other kind?) of Speaker Bronwyn Bishop with a story about our increased Parliament security. What’s a shooting got in Canada got to do with us?
Today’s news brought back to the mind’s forefront those images of beheadings and civilians being slaughtered and the repeated video of 1700 Iraqi soldiers (or possibly students) hands tied, prodded into a trench and then executed.
Accompanying the sounds of rapid gunfire could be heard the increasingly ironic chant of ‘Allahu Akbar’ – God is Great’. As if their God not only condones, but insists on, the rape and torture and murder of non-believers. Even innocent little girls in party dresses.
constricted by fear
After 9/11, when the American citadel of New York was breached, John Howard was mocked for his ‘be alert, but not alarmed’ campaign. But the message was right. If we get consumed by fear, constricted by fear, we start to lose.
Sounds trite but living well is the best revenge.
What has hit the western world the hardest is that religious fanaticism (and it is religious) has invaded our cities and suburbs. Two coppers stabbed in Endeavour Hills. A red-haired Sydney teenager on video threatening to behead Obama and Abbott and promising to fly the black flag from Buckingham Palace and the White House.
An ice-veined nick-named Jihadi John speaks with an English accent. And suicide bombers on the London Tube are British-born converted fanatics.
I read an article recently in the London Sunday Telegraph about British female jihadis running a zealous religious police force that punishes women for ‘un-Islamic’ behaviour in territory controlled by terrorists.
The women have been recruited to the Al-Khanssaa brigade, an all-female militia set up by the Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham (ISIS). Their duties include the strict enforcement of sharia law dress code as well as searching burka-clad women to ensure they are not enemy fighters in disguise.
to move to Syria
The brigade is operating in Raqqa, the city where ISIS has set up its Syrian headquarters – near where security services believe the American hostages James Foley and Steven Sotloff were beheaded in the desert.
The article identified a Scottish girl named Umm Layth, aka Aqsa Mahmood, who dropped out of university to move to Syria. According to researchers at the International Centre for the Study of Radicalization (ICSR), based at King’s College London, the 20-year-old from Glasgow is a key figure in the Al-Khanssaa brigade.
Four other British women have gone on Twitter to express interest in joining the brigade. They also reportedly already live in Raqqa. One of them, known as Umm Farriss, arrived in Syria in February, posted online a picture of her suicide belt. Evidence that British woman are being armed with bombs.
(Under IS interpretation of Islamic law, women are not permitted to fight, but they are allowed to be suicide.)
Mahmood, a former private schoolgirl who wanted to be a doctor, has left her parents heart-broken.
And if you think this isn’t a religious cause then listen to her last phone call to her parents before she crossed the border into Syria.
‘I will see you on the day of judgment. I will take you to Heaven. I will hold your hand’.