There’s a striking contrast between the reaction to terrorist attacks in countries like India or Kenya and attacks in Europe and America. In the former there are no apologies and a relentless desire to go after those responsible.
Oh sure President Uhuru Kenyatta sounds a lot like a Western leader talking about how diversity is our strength and praising the people standing in line to give blood. But then he says things like this, “They shall not getaway with their despicable, beastly acts. Like the cowardly perpetrators now cornered in the building, we will punish the masterminds swiftly and painfully.”
On the other hand there’s the rather blunt statement of Kenya’s foreign minister. “We are not going to apologise for being friends with Israel and other nations,” said Amina Mohammed.
And the head of the Kenyan police sounds a good deal more militant. “Taken control of all the floors. We’re not here to feed the attackers with pastries but to finish and punish them,” Police Inspector General David Kimaiyo said on Twitter.
All that reminds me of the Mumbai massacre.
“The security forces that brought the bodies told us that those were the bodies of the terrorists,” he said, adding there was no other way they could have identified the bodies.
An intelligence agency source added: “One of the terrorists was shot through either eye.”
A senior National Security Guard officer, who had earlier explained the operation in detail to rediff.com, said the commandos went all out after they ascertained that there were no more hostages left.
When asked if the commandos attempted to capture them alive at that stage, he replied: “Unko bachana kaun chahega (Who will want to save them)?”
Indeed who would?
Obama wanted to take Osama alive, but the SEALS vetoed that with a few bullets. And yet overall we’ve lost the warrior spirit. Our leaders don’t get angry when a terrorist attack happens. The kind of vocal outrage that you see in Kenya or that we saw briefly on September 11 is mostly absent. It may be the anger we need to get in touch with if we are going to survive.