For how much longer will the western democracies adopt the ostrich position, sticking their heads in the ground and hiding their eyes from the true menace of Islamic fundamentalism? The question becomes more urgent with each terrorist outrage. Yet somehow the self-evident answer continues to be avoided. Even after the atrocities in Paris, Brussels, Tunisia, Turkey, Florida and now Nice, western powers show no willingness to go to the coordinated war footing which is so clearly required.
In their defence, their caution is understandable. When facing a menace on a scale unknown since the rearmament of Germany in the 1930s, the human instinct is to bury the head in the sand, and hope to God that it goes away. But Neville Chamberlain’s place in history as “Ostrich Supreme” stands testament to the folly of surrendering to the escapist urge.