How condescension benefits terrorism

Nick Cohen: Writing from London

If European Muslims are treated like children, is it surprising that some should act so irrationally?

Nick Cohen
Sunday November 25, 2007
The Observer

I looked at the heckler at the Labour meeting and imagined his life in an instant. As a man of the 1968 generation there must have been sit-ins and marches, along with vicarious thrills at the triumphs of communists from Cambodia to Cuba. I guessed that with communism dead he would have no difficulty in endorsing the new threat to the status quo from the radical right. I wasn’t disappointed.
Only rich Iranians wanted democracy, he declared. The true voice of the masses, the tribune of the people we must attend to and negotiate with, was Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

I have become so used to hearing leftists defending reactionaries I am no longer shocked. But my ’68er surprised me with a form of bad faith I had…

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