Albert Einstein once wrote that “the world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don’t do anything about it.” The people of Spain and their new leader prime minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero have apparently decided that the appropriate response to the murder of 200 of their fellow citizens is to do nothing and appease the terrorists.
The remarkably successful attack on 3/11 changed the political face of Spain overnight. It was a meticulously, and cleverly, calculated assault that came just three days before a general election, at a time when few thought that José María Aznar of the Popular party, who led in all of the opinion polls, could be beaten by the Socialists.
If there is anything the terrorists have learned, it is that they can slaughter Europeans with impunity; voters will automatically blame George W. Bush and the war on terror for “provoking” the attack. So, it is only a matter of time before the terror networks target another of Washington’s European ally.
The necessary elements are already present. There are Islamist militia in Antwerp; Islamic sharia courts all over northern Italy; as well as Islamic terrorist-recruitment centers and financial networks in London, Manchester, Amsterdam, Brussels, Switzerland, Berlin, and Paris.
If the European Union is to protect its citizens then it must take a firm grip on the situation and take immediate tactical measures to assure the security of the continent. The omens are not good. The European attitude thus far has been to shake hands with terrorists like Khaddafi, and have tea with the mullahs of the Islamic Republic of Iran. No democratic country has any justification for doing business as usual with these people. At a time when all the democratic nations should be standing side by side, tall and brave, and showing solidarity in a display of strength and bold defiance, they are instead falling prey to weakness. What sort of message are they giving to the dictators of this world?
Removing the Taliban was key to freeing Afghanistan. Removing Saddam was key to bringing democracy to Iraq. But there is more to do. Removing the mullahs in Iran will democratically revolutionize the Middle East and Central Asia. During the civil-rights movement, Martin Luther King urged whites and blacks to work together: “We cannot walk alone.” The innocent people of Iran have for 25 years cited those very same four words and yet, they have been walking alone. If the EU stood as a united front and exposed the Islamic Republic for all of its mass killings and human-rights violations, it would not only start extinguishing their own terrorism crisis but also free the Iranian people.
–Nicole Sadighi is an advocate of nonviolent movement for establishing democracy and secularism in Iran.