Thursday, 19 January 2017

LN: Germans stand at crossroads after Berlin massacre

ČTK |
22 December 2016

Prague, Dec 21 (CTK) - Germans will now be confronted with the question of whether they should be afraid more of what the wide open door has brought, or of changing their role of a guardian of European values if they fundamentally tightened their migrant policy, Zbynek Petracek writes in Lidove noviny (LN) yesterday.
He writes that talking about the widening gap between the stances of the political, cultural and social elites and the stances of "the silent majority" has become a cliche, but the first reactions to the terrorist attack in Berlin on Monday seem to confirm this.
U.S. President-elect Donald Trump wrote in his letter of condolence that Islamic State and other Islamist terrorists are murdering Christians in their communities, Petracek writes.
But the conservative German web Die Welt published it with a note "drastic words," Petracek writes.
What matters that German Chancellor Angela Merkel said almost the same, but less Trump-like and less "drastically," he writes.
He writes that this enhanced the impression that in Germany, it still depends more on what is said (God forbid that the violence be connected with Islam) than on what is happening.
Petracek writes that Cai Pilippsen, from Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, wrote in a live blog during his night shift that "it is still open whether the case has a terrorist, or Islamist background."
Why are the Islamists and terrorists always treated as opposites? Is it so only because the ideological diktat requires this because the terrorists are the bad and the Islamists are the good? Petracek asks.
Adam Cerny writes in Hospodarske noviny (HN) that the intelligence services and police will have a problem explaining why and who failed to avert the terrorist attack in Berlin.
But even the less knowledgeable will admit that since Edgar Snowden released a big quantity of classified information into the public space, not only common people may know more about the work of the intelligence services, but the information is also accessible to those who should not know it in the common interest of the rest, Cerny writes.
That is also why the organisers of terrorist networks now avoid electronic communication more than in the past because information on them is now easier to find, Cerny writes.
As a result, new investments, more sophisticated methods, the recruitment of new people and a more consistent supervision of people will be called for, Cerny writes.
In this situation, German society just as other Western societies, including the Czech, will have to ask how far they can go in the anti-terrorism struggle not to cease to be free, Cerny writes.
Czechs should wish the Germans well and together with them strive for a consistent, law-based and prudent resistance to criminal violence, Cerny writes.
He adds that this is in their and the Czechs' interest. If the desire for radicalism prevailed among the Germans, the Czechs should think of the fact that this radicalism might not apply to asylum applicants only.
The Czechs have a bad experience with a radical-tempered Germany, Cerny writes.
Berlin is a worldwide symbol of cosmopolitism, tolerance and an endless party and that is why it is actually surprising that a similar attack was not committed there earlier already, Vojtech Varys writes in Mlada fronta Dnes (MfD).
Christmas will definitely continue to be celebrated after the attack, the Christmas markets and huge Christmas trees will not disappear from squares and people will go to Berlin in search of entertainment, Varys writes.
They will only be more careful, may be more timid and some of them armed. There will be more pacifists and more supporters of the police state, Varys writes.
He writes that people's desire for survival is natural and fear is even a useful reflex. But to reduce life to nothing but the struggle for survival would be nonsensical.
To reduce civilisation to one large armoured bunker, in which people would be hiding from real as well as imaginary enemy would mean to give up life right away, Varys writes and adds that all will die one day anyway.
Yet, it is not possible to wave away the death of randomly chosen victims. The Berlin attack was undoubtedly a crime with tragic consequences, Vary writes.
At the same time, it is not possible to shun a comparison. A similar massacre is happening in Turkey every moment, the Syrian developments have already become tedious and people prefer not knowing about Yemen. Africa has turned into one large suffering and a bad conscience of Europe, Varys writes.
The ravaging of the butcher Duterte in the Philippines is accepted as a diversification of the bizarre news from "the end of the world." People do not follow the executions in China, Iran or Saudia Arabia, Varys writes.
Yet, they are not indifferent to human suffering and the spectre of death whenever they can affect them. It is a reminder of that no one is protected, Varys writes.

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