To get rid of the terrorist hives you have to go after the “queen-bees”

It was, I think, Lee Kwan Yew who first described Islamic terrorists and terrorism with his analogy of bee hives. He advised that terrorism could only be addressed if you went after the preachers (“the queen-bees”).

“In killing terrorists, you will only kill the worker bees. The queen bees are the preachers, who teach a deviant form of Islam in schools and Islamic centers, who capture and twist the minds of the young.” – Lee Kwan Yew, 2003 interview with Fareed Zakaria

I think the hive analogy is sound but I would put it a little differently. In an Islamic terrorist organisation, I equate the preachers with the queen-bee, the central command and the suicide bombers and kamikaze attackers with drones, and all the remaining support staff as the worker bees. The Paris attackers were drones and expected to suicide. Their support (safe-houses, chauffeurs, comfort women and the like) are the worker bees and expendable. The sick, infected queen-bee is somewhere in Syria.

Most Muslims are not terrorists. But far too many are. And they are all inspired by their own queen-bees each with its own infected version of Islam. Of course there are non-Muslim terrorists as well. In today’s world however, the majority of groups using indiscriminate terror tactics are Muslim.

Why deny the reality? Why then the leap to judgement – and it surely is based on something other than reason – to reach the conclusion that the religion of Islam should not be held responsible for the “perverted terrorists” that the religion inspires? I hear some arguing that what drives ISIS is not “true” Islam. Or that Islam is actually a “religion of peace”. There is a rush to absolve the religion and to decouple the behaviour of terrorists from their religion. This may be politically correct but it is quite irrational. The religion does generate and allow the queen-bees who provide the driving Cause. Without Islam (no matter how perverted a view or practice of Islam), there is no ISIS. And there wouldn’t be so many other such groups (al Qaida, Boko Haram, al Shabab, LeT …). I conclude that there is something fundamental and inherent in the practice of Islam which inspires, allows and glorifies terrorist behaviour by some of its practitioners . “Terrorist Islam” is as much a part of Islam today as “Militant Christianity” was of Christendom almost a thousand years ago.

All terrorists have a Cause which tips them over the edge. Breivik had his and it was a “white supremacist cause”. The IRA had their own Cause also rooted in religion. For those Muslims (mainly Sunni) who are terrorists, it is their “perverted” view of Islam which provides the Cause which is the key motivator. That “perverted” view of Islam is actually part of the reality of the Islam of today. It is that which is promoted by an army of imams and preachers in mosques and teachers in madrassas who cherry-pick sections of the Koran to underpin their adoption of jihad and their virulent world-view. These are the queen-bees. It would seem that Islam contains within itself a convenient framework, and the Koran provides suitable, appropriate and authoritative “scriptures”, which can then readily be exploited by the “queen-bees” to inspire the terrorist groups. A very great many of these “queen-bees” are Sunnis and a large number of their mosques and madrassas are funded from Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States. On the ground, Islam is proving to be particularly effective in generating queen-bees and providing the terrorists with a Cause.

The writings of  the Koran (or the Bible for that matter) are all just fairy stories, made up a long time ago. Their literal content is anachronistic and almost irrelevant. They can all be – and are – interpreted in a variety of ways by the queen-bees of the day. It is the interpretation of those stories today and the behaviour engendered now which is relevant. Most Muslims interpret the Koran and their religion to shun gratuitous violence. But a not insignificant number of Muslims, interpret the Koran in a “perverted” way and practice their own jihadist brand of Islam. And they do so because they can, and – more importantly – because Islam allows them to. A religion does not live in some Divine Vacuum. It is not some abstract thing which can be divorced from its current interpretations, practices and practitioners. The Christian religion which inspired the Crusades and the barbarisms of the Church Militant is now out-of-date. But is obsolete only because it is no longer practiced. The ahimsa (non-violence) principles of a romanticised Hinduism of the past (which never really existed) is not relevant when faced with the reality of the current violent practices of some Hindu fanatics. The VHP and the RSS and the Hindu Mahasabha provide the Hindu queen-bees. The much vaunted non-violence of Buddhism is of no comfort when faced with rabid, rampaging Buddhist monks in Burma or Sri Lanka. These mad monks are an integral part of what Buddhism is today. The religion of Islam cannot just – by assertion – claim to be a religion of peace and ignore the reality that so many of its preachers and teachers promote terrorism. It is the religion itself which allows space for their interpretations which, in turn, give rise to the perversions (just as the Bible was, and is, perverted by some). The religion of Islam as manifested in its current practice and by its practitioners must bear its share of responsibility for the behaviour of the perverted few.

The suicide bombers and gunmen and beheaders are essentially drones – but deadly drones. Killing a drone does not get rid of the queen-bee or the hive and a further supply of idiot drones. A terrorist is not born a terrorist. No doubt genes have a say. Upbringing plays a large part but the availability of a queen-bee and a Cause is the final – and necessary – straw. Some would argue that a terrorist will always find a Cause to serve, but behaviour does not work that way. There may be some cases of psychopaths looking for any Cause to serve Generally, however, Causes look for or create their drones, not the other way around. A member of ISIS born of Muslim parents, but who was brought up instead, say as a Buddhist, or who was not polluted by some rabid imam or his proxy, would not today be beheading infidels. The potential terrorist will never finally become a terrorist without being attached to a queen-bee and indoctrinated by a Cause. That Cause has to be sufficiently strong to generate, and be manifested as, a vicious hate of something or somebody, if it is to finally tip behaviour into terrorist actions. Which is why I don’t buy the argument that just poverty or unemployment provide a Cause. They may contribute, but by themselves, don’t usually generate the level of hate required. Of course, it is not only a religion and its infected queen-bees which provide a Cause for terrorists. Politics and race can also provide the level of hate required. Every religion has had its share of queen-bees who inspire, or have inspired, its fanatic drones by providing them with a Cause directed against non-believers. In today’s world, Sunni Islam and its queen-bees inspire more terrorist groups and terrorists than any other religion. “Militant Christianity” encouraged and promoted by Christian queen-bees, was an integral part of the Christianity in the time of the Crusades. In our time, it serves no purpose to try and divorce “moderate Islam” from the queen-bees who promote the practices of “terrorist Islam”. The religion of Islam – at any time – consists of its practitioners of that time. One cannot separate Islam, as if it lived in some elevated place above the fray, from the terrorist behaviour it has inspired in so many of its adherents (Sunni and Shia).

All through history one or other of the organised religions has inspired terrorism. But it has always required rabid preachers – the queen-bees – to inspire the simple-minded drones. In today’s world that religion is Islam and the majority of the terrorist groups active are Sunni.

The simple reality is that Islam today – in some fundamental way – generates more queen-bees and inspires more terrorists with a Cause, than any other current religion or political movement. And to get rid of the terrorist hives you have to go after the queen-bees. Without the queen-bees the idiot, murderous drones and the unthinking, slave-like workers would be directionless. 

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