On Saturday British Prime Minister David Cameron gave a speech at a security conference in Munich. The address was well-trailed by 10 Downing Street, as newspapers gave advance notice of the speech and then picked over the contents the following day.
Why link multiculturalism, Islam, and terrorism when the evidence is inconclusive? Because Cameron’s speech was about politics and not about security. The Conservatives have seen their standing in opinion polls decline as massive cuts on social services begin to sink in. The diversionary rhetoric from Saturday plays well with the right-wing media and with the Conservative base; it is smart politics.
But what is smart politics does not necessarily make for wise counter-terrorism.