On Monday, Andrew Bolt — who normally adopts a happy-go-lucky approach to The Left — thanked reader Owen for bringing to his attention an article published on September 12 on the ‘Business Insider’ business news site; the BI article in turn credits an article in the online version of ‘Greece’s International English Language Newspaper’ ekatheremini: ‘Left-wing, anarchist terror on rise’ (September 11, 2010). The article reports on the publication by EuroPol of ‘The European Union (EU) Terrorism Situation and Trend Report (TE-SAT) 2010’ (PDF).
The Left is now more dangerous than the Right
October 11, 2010
What is it with the Left and violence? Indeed, with all forms of collectivism – not least Islam – and violence?
With European governments paring back the social safety net, and businesses blamed for creating a crisis, left-wing terrorism in Europe is on the march, according to a new report from EuroPol (the European Police Office).
Spain, Greece and Italy reported a total of 40 attacks by left-wing and anarchist groups for 2009. This constitutes an increase of 43 % compared to 2008; the number of attacks more than doubled since 2007.
For all the media paranoia about Right-wing violence, it’s the Left that’s most likely to hurt you. But the prize for violence is still held by Islamist and separatist terrorists – although Spain’s ETA should count as both separatist and Leftist.
(Thanks to reader Owen.)
While Bolt chooses, unusually, to spin the story into an attack upon ‘the Left’ and its likelihood of harming you and your children, Matthew Harwood of ‘Security Management’ sees thing in a slightly more cheerful fashion: ‘Terrorism Attacks and Arrests in Europe Down for Second Straight Year’ he wrote on September 15.
I’m not sure if it’s worth pointing out all the flaws in Bolt’s untypically flawed analysis, but I suppose a few points may suffice. First, the title of his article is not supported by its contents. Secondly, he conflates ideology with political strategy. Thirdly, leaving aside questions of methodology, the number of attacks referred to in the Report is tiny (40), the majority involved property damage (typically arson directed at political or commercial operations) and, when directed against individuals, aimed at police or politicians, not the general public. The sole death attributed to leftists occurred in Greece in June when a policeman was shot dead. The murder has been attributed to the ‘Rebel Sect’ or ‘Sect of Revolutionaries’ group — the group also claimed responsibility for the murder of a journalist in July 2010, although in neither case have there been convictions.
In other words, on the basis of these statistics, the likelihood of ‘you’ being hurt by ‘the Left’ is fantastically small.
Finally, note that the Report was released almost six months ago, in April, and reported on at the time. See, for example: Terrorist attacks decrease in Europe, Valentina Pop, EU Observer, April 29, 2010.