As a Politics graduate I should be able to explain murder and mayhem, even in New Zealand - I can't. Peaceful Kiwi has a long tradition and ancestry of fairness and and just settlement, and the nearest NZ has come to mass violence was the fictional scenes of the 'Hobbit' filmed in NZ etc.
Let me tell you how I might work at this to better understand what why terrorism came to NZ: I recently tried to explain the difference between Marxism and Communism, and why I thought Communism played-out the final throes of extreme Leftism whilst Marxism had already been outgunned by intellectuals and soundly rejected. Communists are fanatics without intellectual integrity, cynical and ruthlessly violent to dissidence or competition. It is not the dialectical Marxist view of the world seen through the prism of a 'scientific historical dialectic' that ultimately will 'inevitably' lead to global Socialist dictatorship of the Proletariat and then to the 'paradise of Communism', the ultimate 'human potential realized by historical economic and social forces without the need to conjure-up or pull a rabbit out of the hat; 'it is human destiny'!! But what conditions, how why when in which culture, who will be ready who will need a 'push' didn't even daunt the believers of Marxism. But post-Stalin and post Satre questions of mal practice,corruption, dogmatism, centralism, and inhuman practices didn't just put people off but led them to expose 150 years of Marxism to the 20th values of relativism, structuralism and post structuralism, modernism and post-modernism, and to the human voice of individual difference and nature/nurture changes to how we relate psychology to the individual and collective in all our societies.
Post-war Europe had grow-up. We began to not have to rely on personal political preference but on the many variables where science was no longer a rigid truth and where culture was no longer dependent on mass propaganda but open to the versatile random. Intellectuals like Foucault proved that Marx and his followers were not the exclusive monopolists of scientific absolutes but were reduced to the historical truth of variable and fickle factors that were cursed with ideological idolotry and would 'inevitably' be ruined by and not raised aloft, by history. How Marxist's must have turned in their graves or bean bags when it was suggested that Communism wasn't the last and a virtuous logical inevitable outcome, but that Capitalism would itself transcend the Bourgeoisie's monopoly of power and influence. Global Capitalism was the 'inevitable' historical conclusion to history and not a staging post to provoke 'Universal Proletarian Revolution.' So here was my argument in full. Communist's couldn't and wouldn't accept the relitivising of their perfect brain child, and so, in spite of the facts, Communists 'willed' Communism and impose it as revenge for losing their faith in Dialectical materialism. Cynicism ruled, Pravda was schooled in betrayal and lies.
Reason and logic are secondary to totalitarian tyranny. This sequence is relevant to Islamic extremism, where the lofty ideals have been dropped for cynical manipulation and fundamentalist doctrine rather than the offerings of harmony and spirituality as well as the religious devotion. Like Communist truth 'devaluer's' before them, acts of coercive brutality and fanaticism is absolute and unquestioned. This 'doubt' has been eliminated from all argument inflated the longevity of the USSR had a shelf-life that was over-due too. The Soviet Union had fulfilled its remit of destroying Hitler and Mussolini and its revelation of how extreme and unrealistic Marxist self-delusion of mass revolution can ever bring individual and collective fulfillment .It was a pawn in a far bigger chess game lost to the sweep of history; it was unrealistic,perverse and out of its depth !! It had opened Pandora's box and was not equipped to cope with the maelstrom of philistine self-inflicted and self-harming hatred. And so... why did such hatred emerge from New Zealand recently? Mass murder in the peaceful islands of NZ ? There is nowhere else more unlikely a place for terrorists to attack ! That is the point isn't it. If it can happen to innocents going about their business then it can happen anywhere.
But like all acts of terror, it will be the West who will have to pick-up the pieces when Fundamentalists run-out of belief in global dominance and supremacy.. It now seems as though there is a domino effect that started from the failed invasion of Afghanistan to the end of the 'Cold War' to the emergence of religious fundamentalism to its ultimate destruction in the hands of Iraq's soldiers fighting their own battles, protecting their own borders and being victorious on their own terms, without Western 'size 12's on Muslim soil'. But the West will have to help rebuild war-torn countries like Syria etc. and guarantee its safety from arbitrary power. It is a thankless task, and the West will not be given credit. But in post Cold War Russia, the policy specific to regaining trust and self-respect, was to put on quite a show of the 'clumsy, insensitive,inappropriate and patronizing gormless geek of a Westerner. Mocked and pilloried nothing like assuming a persona by 'playing the fool' to the humiliated vanquished enemy. Does marvels and redeems their dented morale. The argument being that recovery starts when national pride is regained at the expense of the victor. The virtue here isn't just winning the present but controlling outcome of the future.
But on a wider note,Western democracies are deliberately susceptible and open and accountable to a fault because it prizes freedom so much, but is flexible, dynamic enough to hide agendas under the radar. But that is why democracy is so robust. Let me give you an example :Reagan was seen as a simpleton and a ridiculed 'muppet' outside of the USA, but under the radar he marshaled the most progressive and expansionist confrontation against the Soviets that he became the most successful President in modern times in the Western history by delivering the Cold War on a block. But he did so with a smile and a joke as Mr 'regular guy' ! Democracy appears weak and exposed but it is actually fierce beneath the surface. Buy into the US 'convivial fool' at your own peril, because you will not know what hit you !!!