We recently discussed what doesn’t work when dealing with radical Islam. That phrase maybe redundant, perhaps literalist Islam would be better, but that is also redundant to some extent, rather like saying wet water. Fundamentally, a great number of the faithful believe in the literal and inerrant truth of the Koran, rather like the Medieval Christians were bible literalists.
So pedantry aside, what can be done?
Assimilation would be nice but government efforts to achieve these are feeble, ultimately you either want to integrate or you don’t. Many don’t and have no trouble finding Koranic justifications for the same. And I dismiss the deportation of populations and closing of mosques as not politically deliverable.
So what can be done?
First, call an immediate halt to all immigration from war torn countries, refugees and all, (especially this god-awful “unaccompanied child” program. Any number of Pakistani, Afghani, Iraqi and other immigrants claim to be 17 when they are obviously in their mid-twenties). No point importing more of the problem.
Second, on the committal of any crime, any newcomer to the country should be immediately deported back, even if to a place of danger, regardless of circumstances with no right to return. If you want to stay in the haven that is the UK, obey all the laws, or leave. This would cut down re-offending dramatically as well as initial offending.
Third, tackle worklessness (and thus radicalisation) by insisting that after a certain qualifying period, anyone (UK national or newcomer) must, must be competent in English. If not, no state aid should be available.
Fourth, much as I would like it, there is no public appetite for removing the restrictions on handgun ownership (even now). So, why not borrow an idea from the American old West. When law enforcement was strained and outnumbered by the bad guys, the local sheriff could deputise people. Why not have a modern take on this? Allow the modern deputies to ‘conceal carry’ handguns whilst in plain clothes. Of course it would be possible to monitor applicants for these positions for criminal records etc and you could insist on mandatory monthly training at army pistol ranges. If it were possible to achieve 1% coverage, then the average terrorist scumbag would have cause for concern. If they tried something on the scale of say a 2,000 person event, they would know that after firing the first shot, approximately 20 safety catches would be disengaged and shortly thereafter, they would be dead. As it is, they know we are utterly defenceless. And much as I blame the terrorists for wanton murder, I also blame the politicos for refusing us the means of self-defence. Some obvious targets in Northern Ireland were permitted to carry weapons during the troubles. We are all now possible targets and should all enjoy the possibility of armed protection as politicians do.
Such a policy would likely have saved lives at the Bataclan theatre, Nice and possibly even in the church if the gun men were statistically unlucky.