By Roger Casale : –
President Hollande has described the attacks in Paris an “act of war” by Islamic State.
There is power in our outrage and condemnation of these attacks, but we must also recognise that we were powerless to stop them.
So it was a very good night for the terrorists.
How can we tolerate this?
How can be go back to the naive belief that the nation state can discharge its primary duty to protect its own citizens?
How can we accept the risk that our children will be gunned down on our streets when they go to meet their friends?
Ignorance, anger and fear may now drive a reaction that not only puts France and Europe on a war footing but also drives European societies towards aggressive nationalism and right-wing extremism.
This, too, would be a very good result for the terrorists.
With scores who still lay wounded and dieing in Paris hospital, it may not seem right to call for a moment of calm reflection.
Yet in the face of this unprecedented challenge to post-war society, we should remember that Europe’s strength is in our unity and in our diversity.
In the weeks and months to come, France and Europe will decide what is to be done.
The courageous decision will be to continue to embrace openness and inclusion. The easy way out will be to turn towards nativism, and the politics of fear.
At stake will be the values which underpin our common life together in Europe, the values of equality, freedom, tolerance and respect for the rule of law.
We who believe in Europe must be ready to defend not just our lives but also our way of life, our identity
There is no secure, fair and sustainable future for us as modern Europeans unless we continue to build the future together.
We may need to take up arms against the terrorists, and the organisations that back them.
Let us also be ready to mobilise against those who will seek to exploit the crisis to undermine European solidarity.
Source: New Europeans