Jihad Never Sleeps

Aug 29, 2017 by

by William Kilpatrick, Crisis Magazine:

Most Catholics in the U.S. are vaguely aware that Christians are being persecuted in the Middle East, Africa, and other parts of the Islamic world. Most are aware of the many terrorist attacks in Europe. And most are aware of the major jihad attacks here in America.

But if you’re mainly focused on the occasional terror attack, you are probably underestimating the extent of the Islamic threat and the speed with which it is spreading. That’s because people have short memories. Take the recent terror attacks in Spain—in Barcelona and Cambrils. You undoubtedly saw some of the news coverage of the carnage, and you probably think you won’t forget the event. But memories fade. How many remember the much more deadly jihad attack on the Madrid train system in 2004? The nearly simultaneous bombings aboard four commuter trains killed 191 people and injured more than 1,800. But, unless you live in Spain, the Madrid train bombings passed out of your mind years ago, and if you’re under twenty-five, you likely never knew about them in the first place.

When a spectacular terror attack occurs, the average person is temporarily alarmed, but then settles back into a state of complacency until the next major terror attack triggers the alarm once again. But this cycle of alarm-complacency-alarm-complacency doesn’t bring us any closer to understanding the underlying problem or solving it. Indeed, it conditions us to live with a certain level of terror. We know that the jihadists will strike again, but we also know that the odds are low that we will be among the victims. And so we manage to get on with our lives. As long as bombs are not going off in nearby subways or buses we stop thinking about jihad.

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