This time ten years ago today I was entirely oblivious to the carnage that had just occurred in London.
I was on my way to the Dix Hut on the Haute Route with other colleagues from the Irish Mountaineering Club.
We had our summer Alpine meet in the Val De Arolla, and I was in my own version of Paradise.
It was a three-day trip disconnected from the digital world in physically demanding terrain, and I loved it for both of those reasons.
By the time we arrived back at Base Camp on the valley floor the face on the martyrdom video of Mohammad Sidique Khan, was globally familiar.
His Yorkshire accent was the phonetic evidence that England now had a home grown Jihadi problem.
He mentioned the participation of United Kingdom forces in Afghanistan and Iraq as justification for the four bombs that took away 52 innocent lives and injured around 700.
The good news, if there can be any in such a situation, is that the 7/7 bombings were not the start of a sustained campaign.
In the decade since that awful day in London anytime, a Jihadi kills then they are usually slaying fellow Moslems.
The reasons for this are varied, the victim might be an adherent of the wrong sect of Islam (e g a Shia) or simply they reject the world view of these 7th-century barbarians.
Often they just get in the way of an exploding Holy Warrior on his way to Paradise.
Of course, we in the West notice when the victims are white, and that lesson is not lost on the chaps who blow themselves up or take Kalashnikovs to the beach.
Ten years ago the Jihadi organisation that everyone in the West had heard of was Al –Qaeda.
Now, of course, it is ISIS.
The production values in the videos have improved, but it is the same nihilistic message:
Submit to our will or die.
This is not an ordinary politically motivated asymmetrical campaign.
The revolutionaries of Black September had a simple enough objective to understand.
Their country had been destroyed by the establishment of the state of Israel, and their situation had to be addressed as an issue for the world community.
The Palestinian soldiers then were secularists who saw themselves as part of a global leftist project stretching from Havana to Patrice Lumumba University in Moscow.
Allah was not in the equation for an iconic leader like George Habash.
A Marxist raised in the Palestinian Christian tradition before his death in 2008 he would undoubtedly have been dismayed at the extent that Islamism had come to define much of the struggle for a free Palestine.
I doubt that those Hamas fellows would approve of a revolutionary soldier like Leila Khaled.
The Palestinian guerrillas of the 1960s and 1970s were more likely to have a copy of ‘The State and Revolution’ for ideological nourishment rather than the Koran.
They saw themselves as part of the revolutionary movement lead and inspired by Lenin rather than latter day legions of Ṣalāḥ ad-Dīn.
Dear reader, the deity fellow can be a difficult chap to parley with as he rarely turns up to peace talks.
It is undeniable that British participation in the illegal invasion of Iraq made the Jihadi message more attractive you many young Moslem men in Britain.
The UN mandated NATO operation in Afghanistan is often thrown in with the 2003 toppling of Saddam Hussein.
However, the fighting in the Hindu Kush was always legal under international law, and no one had to tell lies about the links between the Taliban and Bin Laden.
The United States of America had every legal and moral right to go after the 911 conspirators just as Jefferson was correct to dispatch a fleet to destroy the Barbary Corsairs.
In 1785 in London, not far from where the 7/7 bombers struck, Thomas Jefferson, and John Adams tried to reason with Tripoli’s envoy, Ambassador Sidi Haji Abdrahaman.
This Barbary state, a semi-autonomous protectorate of the Ottoman Empire, was raiding American commerce at will and enslaving the crews.
This type of piracy had been going on for centuries, and Barbary Coast pirates had taken captives from as far away as Iceland and Ireland.
The man who wrote the Constitution of The United States of America tried to negotiate with the North African Diplomat and reminded him that the USA had no imperial past with the Moslem world.
Jefferson wrote of the meeting that:
“The Ambassador answered us that it was founded on the Laws of their Prophet, that it was written in their Koran, that all nations who should not have acknowledged their authority were sinners, that it was their right and duty to make war upon them wherever they could be found, and to make slaves of all they could take as Prisoners, and that every Musselman who should be slain in battle was sure to go to Paradise.”
This is also the justification of ISIS and of the 7/7 bombers.
When Jefferson became President at the start of the 19th century, he wasted no time in dispatching a fleet to defeat these chaps.
The US Marine Corps anthem ‘the shores of Tripoli’ has nothing to do with Operation Torch in 1942, but it refers to the turning point of the war when a force of eight US Marines (yes EIGHT) and 500 locally recruited troops prevailed at the Battle of Derna in 1805.
The ranking Marine Corps officer there was the wonderfully named Presley O’Bannon.
Even British Admiral Nelson was in awe of the courage and daring of the Americans in besting these ‘Musselmen’ of North Africa.
Of course, it would be remiss of me not to mention the role of Perfidious Albion in this chapter of early US history.
Still smarting from being defeated by Washington and the Continental Army the Grand Old Dame Britannia was quietly delighted that the Corsairs where bleeding the fledging state in the Americas.
A decade ago today the Jihad genie was out of the bottle in London, and it is still not safely corked.
Just like Jefferson 200 years ago we have no option, but to confront and defeat those who would impose their barbaric 7th-century mores on the innocent and the infidel.
I wish I would travel in the mountains again and then arrive back on the valley floor with all of this insanity just a matter for the historians.