Have we ever, as a nation, faced an enemy more cowardly or more intellectually challenged? At least the IRA had a soup├žon of strategic vision and had the good taste and sense not to brag about their atrocities in advance, on film — they just bragged about them afterwards, with the vague intimation of an apology. Also, they knew how to work explosives, how to make them go bang and kill innocent people — so credit where it’s due. And for all their forlorn hopelessness, it was at least touch and go with the poor Argies for a while, up on Goose Green. But this lot, our current tormentors, the people charged with the task of dragging us to the abyss? If the whacko evangelical Christians and Muslims are correct and there really will be a final bloody conflagration at a place called Armageddon — well, hell, at least it will be brief, with not too many injured on our side. I mean, who would you want as allies, fighting for you, on this terrible day of judgment — al-Qa’eda’s collection of narcissistic adolescent halfwits, or the Israeli army?
‘Don’t mess with the Muslims’ was the vainglorious coda to the bloodthirsty video message recorded by the quarterwit Tanvir Hussain shortly before he was arrested for his part in planning to detonate explosives on board an aeroplane, all of which you may have read about in your newspapers this last week. ‘Why ever not, Tanvir?’ we might have asked him gently. ‘Because, let’s face it, you’re absolutely f***ing useless at this Western-infidel cockroach carnage business. You couldn’t blow up a balloon. Mess with you? Mess with you? What would be the point?’

There had been plenty of wholly spastic Muslim terror operations even before those doctors tried to blow up Glasgow airport last year and ended up setting themselves on fire, harming absolutely nobody except themselves, and having the s**t kicked out of them by itinerant security guards. These were the docs, remember, who couldn’t find a good place to park: Allah’s will thwarted by local council parking regulations. (Well, sure, thinking about it, maybe we’re all with Allah and his soldiers on this one.) I was already worried, before then, about the average IQ level of al-Qa’eda operatives; that stuff, though, made me seriously question the calibre of candidates they’re allowing to practise medicine in this country. I don’t mind that my local GP is a psychopathic jihadi, but I would like him to have an IQ level higher than my cholesterol count; he should at least be able to park.
It’s a bit like when that awful Scouse woman was bunged in prison by the Sudanese authorities for having allowed her schoolkids to name a teddy bear Mohammed. You’ll remember her and the expensive business involved in springing her from chokey in Khartoum. God help us, many of us thought at the time — are all teachers really that thick? What will become of our poor children? Perhaps we should teach them at home. That Scouse woman is presumably back in the UK education system right now, let loose on our children.
One is driven towards a somewhat politically incorrect frame of mind. A month or so back, some Muslim chap with lime jelly between his ears was arrested in the West Country on terrorism charges. On television the police talked about his arrest with considerable reserve and sympathy, suggesting that he was a dupe, an idiot, a borderline cretin. A simple man manipulated by clever and malevolent sources. They had, after all, interviewed him; they had the measure of the man. But they may have missed the point that chummy, down in the cells, was absolutely par for the course for Muslim terrorists — that all of them are, frankly, a few sura short of the full Koran. And, God forgive me, the same thought occurred last year when the allied forces announced, in outraged tones, that the latest Muslim insurgents who had blown themselves up in Iraq, murdering scores of people and maiming many more, were people who suffered from Down’s Syndrome. How low could al-Qa’eda stoop, they fulminated? Well, um, are you sure these suicidal jihadists were not, in strict intellectual terms, pretty much par for the course? Hell, at least their bombs went off, you might argue. Evidence suggests that for fundamentalist lunatics they were of slightly above average IQ.
It is not just IQ, of course. Lately there has been a rather winning cowardice on display from those who, we are told, wish to murder us all in the name of Allah. Look at the cases of Abdulla Ahmed Ali, Assad Sarwar and the aforementioned genius Tanvir Hussain — the ‘liquid bombers’ convicted of having conspired to commit mass murder with their ineptly constructed bottles of fizzy pop and hydrogen peroxide. They did not rail at the judge and the jury that this was a court they did not recognise, that Allah would be their judge and that they were wholly, incontestably justified in what they were doing. Nope, instead they whined that they just wished to make tiny little explosions somewhere harmless — not actually hurt anybody — in order to gain public attention.
In other words, the courage of their convictions utterly deserted them. They lied in order to save themselves a few years more in prison. Those video announcements, which I mentioned earlier, were part of the same thing: these weren’t psychopaths, then, these were public relations officers for the Ummah, who wished to do nothing more than alert attention to injustices perpetrated by the infidel hordes. This defence, to which they still cleave, is perhaps even more pathetic than their manifest incompetence. We want to kill you all, they said on their videos — and then, in court, nah, it was only a joke. Only kidding. We didn’t mean it.
How pathetic — and how truly narcissistic. They are part of the respec’ culture; they demand our respect and think they have the right to it and when it is not doled out in the quantities they require, they resort to inept attempts at carnage. I know that suicide attacks occur elsewhere in the world; but there is something very British, very now, about the mentality of Ali, Sarwar and Hussain; indulged youth who nonetheless feel they have been denied the respec’ they crave and then react with the petulance of the terminally adolescent moron. But who then fail to carry out their threats because they are too stupid and have not really, if they’re honest, put the work in.
There is something vapid and empty about all these home-grown Muslim threats; the mangled, half-understood politics, the teenager’s whine of complaint, the insistence that they have been egregiously transgressed and are therefore duty-bound to exact some sort of primitive revenge, if only they can tear themselves away from the int
ernet chatroom and the handheld video recorder. The white kids — utter scum, beyond redemption — who killed the poor goth girl Sophie Lancaster by kicking her to death had made similar vainglorious videos before they committed their crime — a film paid for, as it happens, by the local authority, which fatuously thought it was a good way for them to channel their misplaced energies.
I’ve always held that Islam is largely to blame for the viciousness which is periodically unleashed upon us all in the form of bombings — that it is the credo, rather than the individual, which is principally to blame. And you have to say that Islam is, in this regard, an extremely accommodating credo. But there is something to be said too for the argument that these young boys — it is always young boys — are simply a different side of the coin to the stabbers, muggers and thugs of young, modern Britain: over-indulged, forever demanding of respect and redress, utterly undeserving of either.
This article first appeared in the print edition of The Spectator magazine, dated