BBC blames suicide terrorism on being in the wrong “context”

As this e-mail from Rick Darby of the Reflecting Light blog indicates, the Islamic attack on the West, which was only made possible by liberalism, is not making liberals come to their senses, but is making them more liberal—i.e., more insane—than ever:

Saturday night, The Discovery Channel broadcast a program titled “Psychology of the Suicide Bomber.” It turned out to be an excellent illustration of the mentality you described in the “White West and the spirit of Amy Biehl” posting and a backup for your argument in “He was a clean-cut kid and they made a killer out of him…”

You might have thought a study of the psychology of the suicide bomber would revolve around how Islam manages to brainwash some of its adherents to the point of throwing their lives away and taking the lives of others. Or at the very least, religious fanaticism in general terms.

The program, co-produced by the BBC, followed in the footsteps of the four young men who carried out the London tube and bus attacks last July. Islam was scarcely mentioned; at most Al Qaeda was referenced a few times. The producers rounded up a handful of tame “experts” who explained that suicide bombers were motivated by disorientation caused by living in cultures different from the ones they grew up in (which is also the situation of a few hundred million non-suicide-bombers in the world today), and that they developed extremely strong group bonds with others whom they didn’t want to let down (true also of perhaps a few billion non-suicide-bombers).

A British researcher on the program said, “People can do absolutely dreadful things, and yet be completely normal, completely ordinary, completely unremarkable. You don’t have to be evil, you don’t have to be mad, you just have to be in the right context.”

At no point did the analysis suggest that suicide bombers have made a moral choice. They aren’t evil, according to this view, they just found themselves in the wrong context. Here is contemporary liberal non-judgmentalism carried to the limit.

The lesson we were meant to take away was that the four London suicide-homicide bombers (all but one, I believe, born in Britain) were so undone by cultural dislocation (albeit living in communities in Yorkshire that might be mistaken for Pakistan—I’ve seen some) and formed such a “band of brothers” (not, mind you, a religious cult; just good buddies) that they were drawn inexorably into their plot.

The liberal mind cannot admit that there is evil and that people can choose it, because to choose good over evil, or even just to refrain from evil, presupposes some higher good than self-interest or acting out one’s impulses. And that opens the floodgates to belief in a spiritual realm < something most liberals view with alarm.

You can read more comments about the program at Reflecting Light.

Rick Darby

Is this wild-eyed, excuse-making, leftist view of suicide bombers all that different from that of the prestigious social critics Olivier Roy and Francis Fukuyama, who say that terrorism is due to the cultural displacement of Muslims in the West?
Posted by Lawrence Auster at January 23, 2006 06:00 PM | Send

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