If you listen to mainstream media narratives, the United States is apparently the only place where crime happens, and if we could just get rid of guns and be more like Europe, everything would be perfect.
That viewpoint was just hit with a cold dose of reality after a supposedly “secure” embassy in London was attacked on Friday in that time zone.
All of the details of the incident are not yet known, but the Fars News Agency reported that a small mob of armed men breached the perimeter of the Iranian embassy in London, taunting police and causing a standoff that may have lasted for hours. And though they were armed, guns weren’t the issue.
“Early reports said the raiders are four men who have opened their way into the embassy premises, while threatening people on the scene with machetes and baseball bats,” Fars, the Iranian government’s semi-official news agency, stated.
“The London Police have reportedly deployed around the embassy but took no action in the first couple of hours after the attack,” the Iranian news agency continued.
Journalists from several other outlets confirmed the incident. “Iranian Embassy in London has been attacked by supporters of Shia cleric Grand Ayatollah Shirazi,” tweeted Hossein Aghaie, a Persian expert and contributor for the BBC.
“The masked assailants touting machetes dragged down Iranian flag, chanted slogans,” he stated.
IFP News, another Iran-based agency, reported that four supporters of a “radical group” had finally been arrested after entering the embassy grounds and climbing onto a balcony of the building.
“Immediately after the incident was reported, Dr. Araqchi, the (Iranian) deputy foreign minister for political affairs, expressed the Islamic Republic of Iran’s strong protest to the British ambassador to Tehran and demanded that the U.K. police fully protect our diplomats in London and immediately deal with the assailants,” explained Bahram Qassemi, a spokesman from the Iranian Foreign Ministry.
The Iranian representative also scolded the government for failing to adequately protect the supposedly “secure” location. Sound familiar?
“The British government is duty-bound to seriously and decisively fulfill its responsibility to protect the Islamic Republic of Iran’s diplomats and diplomatic centers and immediately arrest and prosecute those who have trespassed the diplomatic sanctuary,” Qassemi declared.
Qassemi told IFP News that the British ambassador to Tehran had officially apologized on behalf of the U.K. government for the security breach, and assured diplomats that British riot police finally had the situation under control.
Although this incident thankfully ended without bloodshed, it echoed a much more dramatic attack that took place at the Iranian embassy in London in the spring of 1980. During that breach, six armed men entered the embassy and took 26 people hostage. The six-day crisis only ended after British SAS operatives raided the building.
There are a few takeaways from this most recent incident. Perhaps the most important is that even at a “secure” diplomatic location, those who seek to break the law and cause havoc will find a way.
Pretending that bad men will act rationally is a fool’s errand; it’s better to recognize that laws and signs cannot stop attacks, and to prepare people and possible targets to defend themselves.
Another point is that assurances of protection from the government are often hollow. As we’ve seen time and again, police and government authorities are sometimes too slow to stop an incident before it begins. There must be other contingency plans in place besides trusting the “cavalry” to save the day.
Reality doesn’t care about narratives or slick-sounding slogans. Europe may be slowly realizing that, and so should America.
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