The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

The London Attack and State Terrorism

Apr 3, 2017

Was the attack of March 22 in London that killed four people really an Islamic attack against the British Parliament, or was it a senseless act of despair? After days of commentary on television about the terrorist menace orchestrated from afar by ISIS, the real story came to light–and it was very different.

Like the attacks of 2005 and 2013, the attacker was born and raised in Britain, son of an English mother and a father from the Caribbean. After getting into brawls at the end of drinking binges, he had gone to prison a few times. After he converted to Islam, he changed his name to Khalid Massood and lived unnoticed for fifteen years as a father of three children, well regarded by his neighbors. Then, last December, he and his family were evicted from their home. It had become too expensive, since he didn’t have a job with a regular salary.

For the victims and their families, obviously, a disaster is still a disaster, whatever the causes. But the media and politicians showed shameless hypocrisy in this case. For example, a daily paper ran a headline in giant type: “The Killer Was an Unemployment Insurance Cheat.” Since there was no real terrorist, they were happy to have an unemployed person to blame! This came after the same paper sprayed their usual venom against the “fake refugee terrorists” in their previous issues. And during this time, all the political leaders, from the Conservative Prime Minister Theresa May to the Labour Party Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, sang a chorus of national unity in the face of terrorism.

The same press and the same politicians are totally silent about the victims of coalition bombings. The same day as the attack in London, thirty-three people were killed in the bombing of a school in the Syrian village of Tabqa where hundreds of refugees were hiding. Fifty-two more were killed in the bombing of a mosque four days earlier, also in Syria.

Whether these bombs are American, British, or maybe French, changes nothing. Ignoring the real motives of Khalid Massood on March 22 is no doubt linked to avoiding any discussion of the motivations of the leaders of the rich countries in their wars in Syria and Iraq. They try above all else to impose their imperialist order on the whole region–that is, the rule of their multinationals. And they use terrorism which is just as deadly for the populations as that used by ISIS.