Home Secretary, now-PM Theresa May, said in 2014: ” ISIL and its western fighters now represent one of the most serious terrorist threats we face.” The attacks that followed, attributed to Islamic State such as the Manchester bombing, appear to prove May’s point.
But let’s put aside the fact that under May, the alleged suspect Salman Abedi had travelled to Libya and let’s also put aside the fact that his father, Ramadan, was an MI6 operative hired to overthrow the secular Gaddafi regime in the 1990s.
Between 2014 and 2016, Islamic State allegedly murdered over 1,200 people outside Iraq and Syria. In England alone, however, the Conservative government led by May and continuing policies enacted by David Cameron, has killed over 45,000 people as a direct result of austerity. It will have killed a minimum 150,000 by the year 2020. This level of state-violence makes ISIS look small by comparison.
Recently, ten medical experts from institutions ranging from King’s College London to Oxford University published a time trend analysis of Tory cuts to social spending, particularly in the elder care sector. “From 2001 to 2010, the absolute number of deaths in England decreased by an average of 0.77% per year,” they say.
However, from 2011 to 2014, i.e., austerity years, “the number of deaths increased by an average of 0.87% per year.” Between 2010 and 2014, an estimated 45,368 excess deaths occurred as a result of the cuts.
And that’s not even the whole of the UK. The authors conclude that between 2009 and 2020, more than 150,000 people, mostly elderly, have died and will die, as a result of ongoing austerity, many due to nursing shortages.
Terrorism is broadly defined by the state and the military as the use of violence against noncombatants to achieve political, financial, religious, or ideological objectives. Let’s put aside the New Labour government’s Terrorism Act 2000 , which expanded the definition of terrorist to include suspected accomplices to vandalism.
The more sensible definition of terrorism-to achieve political, financial and/or religious-ideological aims-is exemplified by ongoing Tory cuts to social spending and the ensuing mass deaths of poor Britons. ISIS are terrorists because they target civilians for political aims, namely to drive out Western invaders from their and their country-people’s lands, and terrify residents into accepting an Islamic Caliphate.
Austerity is terrorism because it targets innocent civilians for financial purposes, namely artificially inflating not only Britain’s GDP and credit rating, but also ideologically signaling to foreign (i.e., American) investors that the UK is the best place to invest.
The Economist explains how big business believes that austerity means “lowering the risk premium on government debt,” which is tradable through various bond schemes. ” Business lobby groups ‘ backed the government’s initial austerity drive” in 2010, says another Economist report. But even they thought it hurt growth in the long-run, “[t]hey tend to maintain support for reducing the deficit,” i.e., by cutting social spending, “but argue this should be done at a less aggressive pace.”
A good credit rating is good for financial institutions and their profit in the global economy. If the UK were to default on its debts by, for instance, spending on social care, it might be downgraded and look less attractive to international (i.e., US) investors. This is according to credit rating agency, Fitch. Then-“Liberal” Deputy PM, Nick Clegg, told the British Chamber of Commerce that “confidence” was returning to UK markets by 2012 due to what was then two years of cuts. The price of cuts was about 10,000 lives a year, according to the BMJ article cited above. “We must do everything we can to try and lock in this shift in mood” towards austerity, said Clegg.
In conclusion, until their biggest base-middle class and elderly voters-realise that voting Tory will destroy the UK and end up hurting them in the long-run, as their children and grandchildren come to rely on them for social and financial support, we can look forward to a grim future.
Dr. T.J. Coles is the author of several books, including The Great Brexit Swindle (Clairview Books) and the forthcoming Human Wrongs (Iff Books).
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This post was written by TJ Coles