Theresa May’s four-point plan to solve terror attacks

From her speech outside 10 Downing St:

1. DEFEAT THE IDEOLOGY

May said the recent attacks in Westminster, Manchester and London Bridge were “bound together by the single, evil ideology of Islamist extremism that preaches hatred, sows division, and promotes sectarianism”.

Defeating this ideology was one of the great challenges of our time, and it could not be done through a defensive counter-terrorism operation.

It will only be defeated when we turn people’s minds away from this violence – and make them understand that our values – pluralistic, British values – are superior to anything offered by the preachers and supporters of hate.

May did not explain how potential terrorists could be persuaded of the superiority of British values.

The existing ‘Prevent’ scheme in the UK works to identify troubled young people at risk of extremism. It provides them with mentors who work to counter the Islamist brainwashing.

However May’s speech implied that more needs to be done.

2. REGULATE CYBERSPACE

May blamed “the internet and the big companies that provide internet-based services” for providing a safe space for extremist ideology to “breed”.

“We need to work with allied, democratic governments to reach international agreements that regulate cyberspace to prevent the spread of extremism and terrorist planning,” she said. “And we need to do everything we can at home to reduce the risks of extremism online.”

This builds on a proposal that was already in the Conservatives’ election manifesto, to push internet companies “to deliver on their commitments to develop technical tools to identify and remove terrorist propaganda… and to provide support for civil society organisations to promote alternative and counter-narratives”, the manifesto said.

The government said “some say that it is not for government to regulate when it comes to technology and the internet. We disagree”.

They proposed new laws that would punish digital companies and social media platforms who failed to remove content that breached UK law, and an industry-wide levy taken from social media companies and communication providers to counter “internet harms”.

They also proposed to open discussions with “leading tech companies and like-minded democracies” about an international legal framework to regulate the internet – but it acknowledged “the complexity of this task”.

But companies such as Twitter and Google are likely to strongly resist any push to sanction them over terrorist material published on their platforms.

3. STAMP OUT EXTREMISM

May said the government needed to destroy terrorists’ ‘safe spaces’ in the real world as well as online.

This meant military action to destroy ISIS in Iraq and Syria.

But it also meant action in Britain.

“There is – to be frank – far too much tolerance of extremism in our country,” she said.

“So we need to become far more robust in identifying it and stamping it out – across the public sector and across society.”

May said this meant having “difficult and often embarrassing conversations” – though she did not say with whom – and that people should not live their lives in “separated, segregated communities”.

This measure could mean a move to revamp the Prevent program to be more active in Muslim communities.

Home secretary Amber Rudd had already anticipated Prevent would get more money if the Conservatives were re-elected. She said it had been a useful source of intelligence about radicalisation in the community.

It could also be a return to a proposal that May put forward as home secretary, but which was resisted by David Cameron’s cabinet.

She wanted to stop hate speakers and segregation by gender at universities and colleges. She proposed new powers to ban groups even if they did not meet the bar to be declared a terrorist organisation, and to shut down premises used to host extremist meetings or speakers.

4. NEW COUNTER-TERROR LAWS

May said there would be a review of the country’s counter-terrrorism strategy.

It would ask if police and security services needed more powers, and whether terror offences should attract longer jail sentences – even for “apparently less serious offences”.

But legal blogger David Allen Green said it was “difficult to image what more laws about terrorism there could be”, as the UK had averaged a new terrorism statute every two years since 2000.

“Government and parliament is running out of ways of legislating against terrorism,” he said.

And Lord Carlile of Berriew, QC, the former independent reviewer of terror legislation, told The Times that sentencing powers were “for the most part sufficient” – and he expected judges would take recent terror attacks into account and increase sentences in response, within the current limits.

Some time ago, I was vilified for saying that we have to kill them before they kill us.   It’s taken the world a while to come ’round to my point of view.  Everything they have done to date has been to scrape bodies off the road.   Sure, monitoring has stopped some from happening.  But the engine room that generates these Jihadis continues unabated.

May will be the latest leader in a long line together with Merkle and Macron to simply talk and roll their eyes when it happens again.

Le Penn and Wilders are waiting.

 

– SMH via Stuff


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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet. Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet and, as a result, he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist who takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him, you can’t ignore him.

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