Sometimes you can see a whole society’s self-delusion in under a minute. Consider a single minute that occurred in Britain this week.
On Monday night, Greater Manchester Police staged a pre-prepared mock terrorist attack in a Manchester shopping centre in order to test emergency responses capabilities, readiness and response times. At one stage, an actor playing a suicide bomber burst through a doorway in a crowded part of the shopping centre and detonated a fake device.
It turned out that the actor pretending to be a suicide bomber had shouted the words “Allahu Akbar” (“Allah is Greatest”) before the simulated attack. This may have helped make the simulation more realistic, but it had an immediate backlash. Nobody complained about the simulated attacks. What disturbed some people was the simulation of the signature Islamist sign-off.