Thursday 27 October 2016

Terror can only be beaten with courage

Published 27/06/2015 | 02:30

A Kuwaiti man reacts at the site of a suicide bombing that targeted the Shiite Al-Imam al-Sadeq mosque during Friday prayers
A Kuwaiti man reacts at the site of a suicide bombing that targeted the Shiite Al-Imam al-Sadeq mosque during Friday prayers

If fear is the stock and trade of terrorism, cowardice is its trademark. Thus people enjoying their holidays as they bathed in the sunlight carefree from their busy lives for a brief spell can be slaughtered in their dozens.

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The fundamentalists' war on civilised humanity knows no borders. It is global, heartless and blood-curdlingly brutal.

A man was decapitated in France, while dozens more were butchered as they prayed in Kuwait.

Interpol is reluctant to say that yesterday's attacks were coordinated or connected but we know they were, whether the individuals involved synchronised them or not.

They all shared a common objective of assaulting all that is cherished and worth preserving in our world.

All that is held dear and decent is now a target in the crazed eyes of the fundamentalist zealot.

While their butchery and levels of barbarism may be sickening, they are nonetheless coldly calculated to take away the freedoms that the West cherishes.

They seek to make destinations unsafe, disrupting economic life, and deter people from travelling.

One of their many perverted goals is to goad the international community into responding with similar disregard for life, sowing new seeds of hatred, and swelling their ranks with new recruits.

We needed no new sickening reminders that terror is now an international evil. It must be rooted out.

Only the truly perverse could justify a massacre of the innocent.

Their cause is morally bankrupt and repugnant and will never be allowed to succeed.

Today's terrorists would be tomorrow's dictators if we let them.

The destructive and disruptive capability of a small group will not prevail. Their desperation will only strengthen the resolve to defeat them.

The courage not to submit to it, is its most effective adversary.

Banks must now give something back

So far, the banks have been impervious to all entreaties, setting their stony faces against concessions to mortgage holders.

While Minister for Finance Michael Noonan threatened them with all manner of menace, they stubbornly refused to budge.

Now with a gun to their heads, and the minister's Wednesday deadline to act or face the consequences looming, they seem set to toe the line.

Neither does Mr Noonan deserve any credit for belatedly bowing to what is only just and fair.

The minister has found himself accused this week of bullying the beleaguered Greeks, but throughout the standoff with our own banks he showed extraordinary patience as householders took the pain.

The banks have been enjoying the benefit of cut-price rates while customers felt the brunt.

To date, only AIB has lowered its variable rates and we still wait for a Bank of Ireland response on variable rates.

We were told that all of our banks were far too important to fail, but they are not too big to be held accountable.

It is Mr Noonan's responsibility to guarantee that they are.

Irish Independent

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