The commentators 17-11-15
...on the Paris attacks
Our memories are short. At the weekend, the cry went up that if we don’t act decisively and ruthlessly after Paris, it will happen here. But it has already happened here. The attack on the London transport system in July 2005 differed only in scale. There were four terrorists rather than eight and they used bombs instead of guns. Fifty people died as opposed to 128; and hundreds were injured. What happened in the French capital on Friday night was the latest bloody manifestation of the violent jihadism we have been experiencing for decades. This is not only France’s war
- Philip Johnston, Daily Telegraph
The state changes in size and function only when society wills it. Welfarism happened after the industrial working class was given its electoral say. Defence spending was high during the cold war because of our existential dread. When that insecurity abated, Britain spent the peace dividend on tax credits and a larger National Health Service. Demand determines supply, not vice versa. Years will pass before we know for sure but the terrorist attacks on Paris may bring another of these inflection points, when the demands we make of the state change
- Janan Ganesh, Financial Times
While we are trying to destroy Isis, what of the 500,000 civilians still living and trapped in Raqqa? What of their safety? What of the very real prospect that by failing to think this through, we turn many of them into extremists? The priority must be to protect these people, not to take more bombs to Syria. We need no-fly zones – zones closed to Russians, the regime, the coalition. The Syrian people need security or they themselves will turn to groups such as Isis
- Nicolas Hénin, The Guardian
(Hénin was kidnapped in Raqqa in June 2013 and held hostage by jihadists until April last year)
It’s a dismaying and damaging truth that Westerners care about and empathise with images of white-skinned women grieving in Topshop bobble hats far more than brown-skinned women grieving in niqabs and, when you lend your voice to Euro-centric campaigns such as Facebook’s flag filter, you exacerbate this. When we buy into such easy corporate public mourning, we uphold white supremacy. We’re essentially saying that white, Western lives matter more than others
- Lulu Nunn, The Independent
The West’s reaction to terrorist attacks is usually knee-jerk, piecemeal and hopelessly insufficient. Maybe that’s all we can do and hope that things get back to normal (ish), as we did after Madrid and the London Transport bombings. After Paris, will the response be any different? I’d like to think so but I fear not
- Richard Littlejohn, Daily Mail
Only a few years ago, the puff would have been chucked out the moment the scale of a story like this became apparent, partly as a matter of taste and partly to maximise the potential for display and give the story room to breathe.
Last night only the Telegraph dispensed with the blurb - and that decision may have been influenced by the oversized ad at the foot of the page. The Times had signed up Bake-Off's Nadiya and wasn't about to surrender a millimetre of her promo. The Guardian was similarly wedded to its taste of autumn and the Mail to its Lego toy... but journalism was still the winner
How the papers covered the Paris attacks
Comment Awards, 2015
Thursday 17 September, 2015 The Financial Times and The Times again lead the way in this year's ei Comment Awards, with eleven nominations apiece in the shortlists announced today.
Sathnam Sanghera is responsible for four of those Times nominations - featuring in the media commentator, diversity, technology and individual comment piece categories.
Freelance Yomi Adegoke who founded Birthday Magazine for black teenage girls, is among four writers shortlisted in two categories - in her case young commentariat and media commentator.
George Monbiot of the Guardian completes the media line-up and is also nominated as science commentator and Gillian Tett of the FT is listed in both business and economics.
Her colleague Janan Ganesh is shortlisted for political commentator and the big prize - commentariat of the year, where he is up against the two most recent winners David Aaronovitch (also nominated for comment piece of the year) and Caitlin Moran.
SubScribe is honoured and surprised to find a place on the individual blogger shortlist, and fully expects to come third behind Barrister Blogger Matthew Scott and Stuart Forster of Go-eat-Do.
You can see all the shortlists here.
Comment archive, 2015
Britain and Europe
Sinai jet crash
Lords v Commons
Xi Jinping visit
Xi Jinping's visit
Virginia TV shootings
Boris Johnson, Greece
If you would like
to help to keep SubScribe going,
please click here