Is non-intervention the best defence against terrorism?



“We must be honest about what threatens our security” cried Corbyn, condemning British intervention in the Middle East as a major contributory factor to the situation of terror the UK faces today. Accentuating links between Britain’s military action and terror attacks launched against British citizens, Corbyn’s rally against the West’s war on terror became a focal point for his historic election campaign. But, should we consent to Corbyn’s assessment of terrorism or reject it as an unfounded exaggeration from a man with links to the IRA?

What is for sure is that last week’s election result has proven him a greater force than ever before thought; gone are the days of Corbyn as a prime target for media ridicule. But in spite of his newly proven popularity and the quelling of the press’ ammunition against him, it remains undeniable that, where terrorism is concerned, his views remain illegitimate.  

Corbyn’s hypothesis is inadequate in explaining historic cases of terrorism. He conveniently forgets that 9/11, for example, must be attributed to something more than the US War on Terror, given the former’s taking place in 2001 and the latter’s beginning in 2003. In relation to recent terror-related incidents, Corbyn’s philosophy falls short again. On examining the motivations of the Islamic State, clearly, Corbyn fundamentally misunderstands the ideology of ISIS, holding at its core an inextricable commitment to the defence of Islam against ‘kafir’ influences. It is disbelief that ISIS intends to shatter. Retaliation against foreign intervention is secondary.

Corbyn doesn’t excuse terrorism and is passionate about bringing the perpetrators of terror to justice. However, ideologically, Mr Corbyn is biased. He supports the changing of the existing order of things, and hence, his personal ideology is linked to the ideologies of radical groups. Hypothetically then, Corbyn’s commitment to non-intervention is not linked to its effectiveness as a defence strategy, but to its effectiveness as a measure to balance the blame for terror incidents between western governments and the terrorists themselves. For Corbyn, the importance of non-intervention simply lies in the de-demonization of the groups that threaten us today.

Photograph: Ben Rowe via Flickr

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