The Brussels Attack: Can We Prevent It From Happening Again?

I’ve just been watching the news about the latest jihadist terror attacks to hit Europe, this time in Brussels. So far, 34 people are dead following three separate incidents, all involving suicide bombs. At least one of them had a rifle as well – that was used in an assault on an American Airlines desk at the Belgian capital’s Zaventem Airport. A second murderer blew himself up at a Starbucks stall, while a third killed 20 people at Maalbeek Metro station in the city center.

The internet has erupted with the usual chorus, ranging from fanatical converts tweeting about how proud they are of the terrorists to anguished Salon articles about right-wing backlashes and assorted weasels whose biggest concern about the deaths is that Islam will be blamed. This wave of sound and fury is pretty routine now, and when it fades away we’ll be left with the usual question: How to prevent this from happening again.

The simple fact is, we can’t. The EU will probably announce some pointless measures, like another committee on gun laws, while ignoring key issues like border controls. That’s what they did after the Paris attacks, despite the fact that the weapons used were military AKs smuggled in from the Balkans. Meanwhile, the cell that carried out these attacks has been operating freely across at least three countries – Belgium, France and Germany – because the EU insists on removing internal borders.

Belgium AirportControl of external borders isn’t exactly great either. Most of the cell that committed the Paris and Brussels atrocities had trained or fought in Syria, then re-entered Europe posing as refugees. That’s not a fashionable thing to remind people of; welcoming refugees has become the latest way to signal what a good person you are. The problem is most of the refugees aren’t. The majority are just economic migrants, and while it’s easy to understand why people would want to move to a rich western country, wanting to is not the same thing as having a right to. Our countries didn’t become rich and advanced by luck. And no, they didn’t do it by plundering Africa either. The only reason Europeans were able to colonize Africa in the first place was because they were already rich and advanced.

Most of the “refugees” are economic migrants. Not all of the rest are genuine refugees. A small but not insignificant percentage are terrorists. Refugees should not be allowed out into society until thorough background checks have been carried out – and anyone who’s found to have been lying about their age or nationality should be deported, instantly and permanently.

There are no easy solutions. Donald Trump’s call to ban all Muslim immigrants makes no sense, because apart from anything else the fiercest opponents of the jihadists are also Muslims. Our current problem is not with Islam as a whole, but with a particular strain of Sunni Islam – and the Iranians, for example, don’t like that strain any more than we do. Unfortunately, the current wave of immigrants is coming from places where Sunni extremism is rife.

If there are no easy solutions, we need to start looking at hard ones. Do aspects of our foreign policy make things worse? Yes, some do – knocking over Saddam and Gaddafi was madness; trying to do the same to Assad is more of the same. Yes, all three are or were dictators. So what? They’re not oppressing us, and the blunt truth is that they oppressed their own people a lot less than any democratically elected islamist replacement would. It’s time to back away from the Syrian rebels once and for all. Iran and Hezbollah? They are no threat to the west, so how about we leave them in peace unless they become one? Another blunt truth: If the Iranians get a nuclear weapon they’re going to throw it at Saudi Arabia, not us.

Actually protecting ourselves is going to take some smart, and tough, decisions. No leading politician that I can see anywhere is capable of making them. Obama, Cameron, Hollande and Merkel aren’t tough enough; Trump isn’t smart enough. So let’s look forward to some nice pics of buildings lit up in Belgian colors, then sit back and wait for the next explosion – until our leaders finally wake up.

Disclaimer: The content in this article is the opinion of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the policies or opinions of US Patriot Tactical.

Fergus Mason

Fergus Mason grew up in the west of Scotland. After attending university he spent 14 years in the British Army and served in Bosnia, Northern Ireland, Kosovo and Iraq. Afterwards, he went to Afghanistan as a contractor, where he worked in Kabul, Mazar-e-Sharif and Camp Leatherneck. He now writes on a variety of topics including current affairs and military matters.
Fergus Mason

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