Dead Men Left

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Unity, but not with Blair

Unite Against Fascism estimate that eighty-five mosques were attacked last night. There is a dangerous, dangerous problem in seeking to simultaneously condemn the atrocities last Thursday whilst silencing any attempt at contextualisation. Blair makes his pious appeals for unity in essentially bad faith:

...Tony Blair’s government disavows anti-Muslim attacks. But in refusing to acknowledge the disastrous consequences of hitching this country to George Bush’s wars in the Middle East it is creating the circumstances where Muslims in Britain are scapegoated.

How could four ordinary young men from Yorkshire be driven to blow themselves up in London? For Blair and Bush they were barbarians at war with “our civilisation”. For the architects of the disastrous “war on terror” there is no need to explain why bombs go off in London and Baghdad. By denouncing anyone who gives a political explanation for the violence they allow people to blame all the followers of a particular religion – Islam.

It is one reason, amongst many, that an appeal for unity alone is not enough at present. Unity against terror, of course; but to effectively challenge a backlash from these bombings in London means we must also challenge Blair's bombings abroad.