It has been a year of Islamist terrorism in Britain. The violence on our streets, trains, and other public places recall the IRA campaigns of old, but are more bloodthirsty.
Of course Britain is not the only country suffering from a surge in Islamist violence, and Europe not the only continent.
The United States of America also experienced a spate of murderous Islamist terrorism last year.
In February 2016, Mohamed Barry slashed four people with a machete in a Columbus, Ohio restaurant owned by an Israeli Christian Arab before he was shot dead.
In June 2016, Omar Mateen shot and killed 49 and injured 58 at a gay club in Orlando, Florida. Despite commentator Owen Jones’s posturing, this is recognised as a terrorist attack motivated by Islamism and not homophobia.
In August 2016, Wasil Farooqui attempted to behead a man and stabbed a woman at an apartment complex in Virginia, while shouting the now-traditional religious slogan ‘Allahu Akbar’, meaning ‘God is the greatest’.
In September 2016, Dahir A Adan was shot dead after stabbing ten people at random in a shopping mall in Minnesota.
The same month, 35 were injured in a series of bomb attacks in New York and New Jersey. The suspect, Ahmad Khan Rahimi, was arrested after a manhunt and is awaiting trial.
The last Islamist attack in the US took place in November 2016, when Abdul Razak Ali Artan rammed his car into pedestrians at Ohio State University before stabbing bystanders until he was shot dead.
And that’s it.
No blood has been shed on American soil as a result of an Islamist terror attack since Donald Trump was sworn in as President of the United States.
Unlike his predecessor, Trump was very clear about what he wanted to do. In his inaugural address he said: ‘We will reinforce old alliances and form new ones – and unite the civilized world against radical Islamic terrorism, which we will eradicate completely from the face of the Earth.’
Trump made it clear before and after his election that he has zero tolerance for Islamist terrorism on American soil. He does not equivocate. Already, he has implemented travel bans from countries associated with Islamist terrorism. These have been watered down by the judiciary.
However, should there be another attack on American soil, it is likely that resistance to any new presidential powers will wither in the face of images of the shattered bodies of the dead and injured. No judge could make an opposing argument when Americans have been murdered in indiscriminate attacks. Any demonstrations would be futile. The liberal commentators would have to shut up lest they become apologists for indiscriminate mass murder.
Previously, the terrorists may have regarded the US government’s actions as merely investigation and containment. In Donald Trump, there is also now retaliation. There is revenge.
Consider how Trump reacted to North Korea’s threats to launch a missile at the US territory of Guam. He made it clear that if a missile were launched towards Guam, there would be a military response. There remains a possibility that Kim Jong-un would be deposed by frightened generals should any US missiles hit Korean soil, as this would demonstrate that their leader’s brinkmanship had gone too far, and any escalation could result in their annihilation. Faced by Trump’s determination, North Korea backed down, preferring to send the people of Japan, a country that literally and figuratively raped Korea for 35 years, scurrying to their fallout shelters as a missile flew over their country.
The Syrians also know how Trump reacts to their use of weapons of mass destruction. Instead of Obama-style weasel words, the base that launched the gas attack on civilians was attacked by cruise missiles.
In Afghanistan, Trump demonstrated his resolve by using one of the most powerful non-nuclear weapons to devastate a terrorist fortress built into rock.
While his opponents may describe Trump as reckless, his actions are delivering. The simpering MSNBC commentator Rachel Maddow seemed perfectly happy to see the domestic body-count of Islamist terrorism rise on Obama’s watch. Under Trump, the body-count is zero. The big stick is replacing speaking softly.
So far, the Islamist terrorists have met their match in Donald Trump. They know that if they attack, he will stop at nothing to come after them and to take all steps to prevent further attacks, even if this causes social dislocation that may affect their communities. If they make war on American soil, they know they will get more war back.
Trump, unlike London Mayor Sadiq Khan, does not believe the threat of terrorism is ‘part and parcel’ of modern life. Instead he believes that threatening terrorists should be the norm. It is they that should be cowering, not innocent civilians. Those motivated to use guns, bombs, cars, and knives to kill now understand this and have stayed their hands.
Instead of opposing Trump, our leaders could learn something. France, America and the United Kingdom have all changed leaders in the last year or so. Only America has not experienced Islamist terrorism since.
Trump is not only making America great again. He is making America safe again too.