MSNBC's Hayes: 'We Should Respond to Terrorism' By 'Calmly' Saying 'You Will Lose'
After initially ignoring reports that two Muslim extremists in London savagely murdered a British soldier in broad daylight, MSNBC host Chris Hayes on Friday finally included the story on his All In show as he began the segment with the news of retaliatory anti-Muslim attacks on London mosques.
As he reached the end of the segment, in which he seemed to fret that terrorist attacks make societies "more conservative" and provoke "overreaction," he recounted a British woman, Ingrid Loyau-Kennet, who calmly spoke with one of the terrorists before police arrived, with the MSNBC host concluding:
This woman was facing someone who, it appears, had just murdered someone, hacked them to death with a meat cleaver. And she didn't cower and she didn't run and she didn't even succumb to rage. She just looked terror in the eyes and essentially said, calmly, you will lose. That is how we should respond to terrorism.
A bit earlier, Hayes had referred to going to war against terrorists as "state-sanctioned violence of war in response to terror" as he warned against "overreaction" to terrorism:
Psychologists have found that when people feel safe and secure, they become more liberal. When they feel threatened, they become more conservative. We know from our own recent experience, 9/11 massively empowered America's right wing. I should note that state-sanctioned violence of war in response to terror has the same effect. We have seen al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula grow stronger as drones rain down missiles on villages. And what we are seeing in England right now in the wake of this vicious attack is that hard right elements of British politics are gaining strength.
Below is a transcript of the relevant portion of the Friday, May 24, All In with Chris Hayes on MSNBC:
CHRIS HAYES, BEFORE COMMERCIAL BREAK: An ordinary citizen who looked terror in the face and refused to succumb to the fear that terrorism feeds upon. Amazing. It's coming up.
HAYES: Last night, there were two separate attacks on mosques in England intended, it appears, to strike terror into the hearts of Londoners. An incendiary device was thrown into a mosque in Braintree Essex. And in Gillingham Tent, a window was broken and a bookcase with copies of the Koran sustained damaged. This comes in the wake of protests by the far right English Defense League, protests which at times grew violent. Law enforcement tried to contain the protesters. There were multiple clashes, all of which is in response to a gruesome, horrifying murder, an act of terror on Wednesday, when a British soldier was run down by a car and then attacked with a meat cleaver.
Lee Rigby, father of a two-year-old, had been working in London as an Army recruiter. He was near his barracks when he was attacked. The mourning for Rigby is still fresh, as is the shock over the alleged suspects, two British men who were shot by police and are now under armed guard at a hospital. NBC News understands the two men are believed to be Michael Adebolajo and Michael Adebowale. One of the suspects is believed to have converted to a very radical strain of Islam 10 years ago. And one of the suspects created a truly surreal scene in which after allegedly committing the crime, he approached an eye witness and evidently confessed and declared his motivations. I'd like to warn you that the following images are graphic. And part of the point was so that he could deliver this message.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You people will never be safe. Remove your government. They don't care about you.
HAYES: "You people will never be safe." Yesterday, President Obama, in a wide ranging speech about counterterrorism, said that not every collection of thugs that label themselves al-Qaeda will pose a credible threat to the United States. That applies here. Above all else, the perpetrators were two murderers. They were criminal. But what they did was indeed an act of terrorism. It was ideological violence against a populous, intended to terrify the populous.
It was meticulously planned to incite the kind of reaction it is now garnering from some quarters. But terrorism as a category, as a concept, as a word, has gotten massively stretched until it has almost lost its meaning in this day and age. But there's a reason, I think, why it's still a useful and specific concept. Because terror does something particularly horrible to a populous. It is designed to incite a reaction, one in which people are put in their worst places as citizens, a place where they are acting out of fear. Psychologists have found that when people feel safe and secure, they become more liberal. When they feel threatened, they become more conservative.
We know from our own recent experience, 9/11 massively empowered America's right wing. And I should note that state-sanctioned violence of war in response to terror has the same effect. We've seen al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula grow stronger as drones rain down missiles on villages. And what we're seeing in England right now in the wake of this vicious attack is that hard right elements of British politics are gaining strength. The English Defense League didn't just stage those protests. It is making active use of social media. It has gotten thousands of additional likes on Facebook alone. The English Defense League's Web site proclaims, "We are at war," and its leader is getting a platform.
TOMMY ROBINSON: Islam is not a religion of peace! Islam is fascist and it`s violent, and we've had enough!
HAYES: What terror seeks to do is to polarize the world, so that everyone has to join different camps of extremists, and those extremists feed off each other in a symbiotic relationship. Terror seeks to provoke violence, to provoke rage, to provoke fear, provoke overreaction, provoke tribalism and knee jerk reactions. And what it seeks to snuff out is empathy and reason and fidelity to principles of liberty and calmness. But what made this crazy story so remarkable was a woman, Ingrid Loyau-Kennet, who confronted one of the alleged attackers. She was staring this man in the face and engaged him in a conversation before police arrived.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE INTERVIEWER: Were you scared for yourself in that situation?
INGRID LOYAU-KENNET: No.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE INTERVIEWER: Why not?
LOYAU-KENNET: Better me than the child because, unfortunately, there were more and more mothers with children stomping around, but so it was even more and more important that I talk to him, and then I asked him what he wanted, because I thought, well, usually they want something, a car, or what would you like?
HAYES: This woman was facing someone who, it appears, had just murdered someone, hacked them to death with a meat cleaver. She didn't cower and she didn't run and she didn't even succumb to rage. She just looked terror in the eyes and essentially said, calmly, you will lose. That is how we should respond to terrorism. We'll be right back with "Click 3."