The attacks on Thursday in London brings up so many questions. Are we safe here in the United States? Were the attacks in London in response to the war in Iraq or something else? Could the attacks have been prevented? What can we do to prevent future attacks? Is there any way to stop the terrorists? Is this a war we can win? What can we do as a society and culture to come to some sort of peace? Is there any chance or hope that we can reach some level of peace in the Middle East and with the terrorists?
The New York Times here tells the story of the culture and political scene in London that lead up to the attacks. Things had been brewing for years, Muslims in the West, in London, were displeased with the West’s policies towards the Middle East and other Muslims. Even though they were and are living in a Western, democratic, and prospers society, there are still many Muslims who are displeased with the Western world’s foreign policies. This doesn’t give much hope to the White House and Blair’s idea that democracy is going to some how change the mind set of the entire region. Even if we are successful in establishing a somewhat strong democracy in Iraq, there is no guarantee that Iraqis will respond with a government that is friendly to the West.
Meanwhile the Economist says that these attacks were expected, and while horrible and tragic, most people assumed that one day London too would suffer an attack. But it also correctly points out that these attacks took a year to plan, Al-Qaeda’s resources are limited, for them to pull off something like 9/11 would probably be impossible today since the war on terror has gone after and captured many members of Al-Qaeda. And attacks like the ones in London and Madrid take a lot of time and planing and human resources to pull off in the West.