London Bombing: Isolating Extremists

In the aftermath of the bomb attacks in London on July 7, the links between domestic and foreign are glaring.

The World Today Updated 15 October 2020 Published 1 August 2005 4 minute READ

Rosemary Hollis

Former Director, Olive Tree Israeli-Palestinian Scholarship Programme, City, University of London

Britain’s multi-ethnic, multi-sectarian society is looking to the government to tell it how it is, so that they all can pull together and resist an anti-Muslim backlash.

It seems so obvious but is often overlooked. how a problem is defined will determine the course of action adopted to resolve it. Since politics is the art of the possible, politicians tend to define problems in accordance with the solutions they have some hope of delivering.

On purely domestic issues, if such things still exist in the era of globalisation, adopting policies which are at least feasible, even if not transformational, can ameliorate a problem even if not remove it completely.

However, most of the big issues of the day, among them trade imbalances, poverty, nuclear proliferation, climate change and terrorism, cannot be resolved purely at the domestic level. Collective international action is required, but this presumes a shared understanding of the problems.

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