Five years on from the vicious, anti-human suicide bomb attacks on London.
How do we defend ourselves against these attacks? There are three ways:
1 Intelligence - finding out who is planning to attack us
2 Police -arresting would be attackers before they act
3 Financial action - freezing bank accounts of real terrorists. (Not done very well)
We do not defend ourselves by attacking Muslim countries, as in Iraq and Afghanistan. The Afghanistan fiasco is making things worse, not better, because it drives disaffected Muslim youth, in the UK and across the world, towards desperate action.
This is not just the opinion of bleeding heart liberals. Sir David Omand held the the post of Security and Intelligence Coordinator in the Cabinet Office from June 2003 until April 2005, and he held that the wars would make terrorism worse, not better.
Today, the Guardian reports that Dr Robert Lambert, ex-head of the Muslim Contact Unit, a counter terrorism squad, saying that the war on terror made more terrorists.
Yet still poliiticians try to defend the indefensible, pretending that the Afghan adventure is somehow increasing our security, that the deaths of our soldiers are in a good cause. And still they turn away the obvious solution for success in Afghanistan - medicalise the opium crop.
Politicians are, by and large, intelligent people. How do they end up defending such irrational positions? Policy is a kind of machine that moves not by the rules of rationality, but of rationalisation - providing a line of quasi-plausible reasoning for an action that is based on irrational motives.