These are NO MORE crime scenes, than are Iwo Jima or Gettysberg. And Fallujah. These are ALL battlegrounds.
We do not need prosecute the perps; we need to obliterate them and their bases and their safe-havens. We should attack them and their allies, and their financiers; ALL their enablers and abetters, and the fonts of their evil creed - destroying all madrassas EVERYWHERE that teach ANY form of neojihadism - Salafism, Wahhabism, Qutbism or Binladenism. We should attack them with all we've got - wherever they are. We should do whatever it takes to defeat the enemy.
Amid the carnage today, Home Secretary Charles Clarke is talking about the people who carried out "these terrible criminal acts." That's an understandable reaction — and we shouldn't quibble too much over a choice of words by people who have been stellar allies, who are in the middle of a rescue effort, and who are unsure the bombing has actually stopped.
But it is worth repeating that what happened today is not mere crime. This is war.
It can't sensibly be separated from Bali or Mombassa or Istanbul or Madrid or Baghdad or Virginia or lower Manhattan — or any of the other places where the enemy has attacked. The only security — and an imperfect security it is — is to acknowledge that this is a war and fight it like a one.
Prime Minister Blair has been a staunch ally after 9/11, but many in his country, and throughout Europe, have not grasped what we are up against.