People have always left their country to fight for a cause in which they believe. Often these people are an essential part of the establishment in their home nation; Byron fought for Greek Independence and George Orwell fought against fascism in Catalonia. Today young British men have decided to fight for the Independence State of Iraq and Syria, but these young men will never become part of the British Establishment, mainly because they are being demonised for what they are doing rather than lauded. Some fear that when and if these young men return home they will practise terrorism in their home country.

I think that those who have such fears do not understand the processes which cause men to fight for causes and rather categorise causes as good or bad, whereas all causes are mixtures of both in varying proportions. Usually men return for fighting abroad disillusioned and broken. They can no longer fill their boots with loot and fight merely for the justice (as they see it) of their cause. Justice is rarely achieved in fighting. Young men return with older minds and frailer bodies. I would not fear them when they return.

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