Tunisia is largely dependent economically on its tourist industry, which had already been much affected by political upheavals of the Arab Spring and the attack in March on the Bardo Museum that left 22 tourists dead. Arrivals from France, the most important market for Tunisian holidays, were already down 65 percent from the previous year; tourists like sun, sea and sites, but not at the cost of their lives.
Tourism can survive a dictatorship such as that of Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, who ruled the country until 2011, but not a democratically elected government that cannot guarantee security. This attack will therefore achieve two goals for the Islamists: it will make the government more repressive, but in all likelihood ineffectually so, thus earning it the hatred and disdain of the populace. And it will cause severe damage to the Tunisian economy, rendering the economically desperate more likely to listen to extremists and believe that Islamism is a solution to their problems. When chaos comes, people prefer anyone or anything that can re-impose order; where there is anarchy, the most ruthless get to rule. And no one can deny the Islamists their ruthlessness.
Whether or not a connection can be proved between the beheading in France and the attacks on a Shia mosque in Kuwait that were done on the same day as the butchery in Tunisia, few people will resist the idea that they were connected, ideologically if not organizationally, and that such terrorists pose a worldwide threat.Dalrymple goes on to shoot down the idea, much vaunted by David Cameron and others, that the slaughter had "nothing to do with Islam":
Supposing that, after the attack on the church in South Carolina by Dylann Roof, someone had said, “This had nothing to do with real racism; real racists are peace-loving people who would never dream of such an attack. All they want is a peaceful world in which whites rule and blacks know their place as racial dhimmis.” What would we think of such a person? What would we think of the implication that, even were it not for his racist ideology, Dylann Roof would still have attacked the church and killed nine people? It is indeed the case that most racists do not attack black churches—otherwise, such attacks would be far more numerous than they are. But to say that Dylann Roof was not motivated by his racism would be absurd.For sure. But Roof doesn't offer proof of the lie behind multiculturalism, the prevailing social doctrine. So while no one has a hard time condemning white racists and their ideology, the same cannot be said re the jihadis.