We were having dinner with friends last night, eating, drinking, laughing, telling off-colour jokes and at times even attempting serious conversation.

That’s what one does on a Saturday night. My preference is to do so at home: restaurants these days are too noisy to tell off-colour jokes or especially to attempt serious conversation.

Some others don’t mind that though; they like the buzz, the atmosphere of joyous exuberance. Why, they don’t even mind what passes for music these days drowning conversation in tribal, electronically enhanced din. Well, de gustibus… and all that.

Just as we were eating and drinking, thousands of others, mostly young people, were having a good time at the hundreds of restaurants and pubs in the recently gentrified Borough Market area of London, some six miles from us.

And then, at around 10 pm, as we tucked into our pudding, they weren’t having a good time any longer. Three men drove their white van through crowds at London Bridge, then crashed the van at Borough Market and jumped out brandishing 12-inch knives.

They then broke into restaurants and pubs and began slashing people’s throats. Eight minutes later they were dead, shot by armed police. Their rampage didn’t last very long. But long enough.

Seven dead, 48 in hospital with variously awful injuries, many walking wounded, river police looking for more bodies in the Thames. Saturday nights in London aren’t what they used to be.

Reporting on this witches’ Sabbath, the BBC at first didn’t say a word about the murderers, other than that they were men, three in number and probably terrorists. Others reported they were ‘of Mediterranean origin’.

Now the Mediterranean area, the cradle of our civilisation, is rather large. So what were they? Italians? Frenchmen? Greeks? Spaniards? Israelis?

And only the morning papers mentioned in passing, without making a big deal of it, that the murderers were “jihadists” who, for the benefit of the predominantly Anglophone audience, replaced the Arabic battle cry “Allahu Akbar!” with “This is for Allah!”.

Oh, so they were that kind of Mediterranean? Who could have thought.

Everyone, is the answer to this facetious question, especially since this is a third such incident in England over the past 10 weeks.

Everyone knows who drives HGVs through human flesh, slashes throats, sprays streets with AK rounds, blows up crowded buses and pop concerts. Not people of some nebulous Mediterranean origin, nor probable terrorists, nor even jihadists or Islamists, although here we’re getting warmer.

Muslims. That dread M-word that our politicians and journalists can’t bring themselves to utter. Devout followers of Islam, who do murder because Islam tells them to do it.

Yet no public figure has the guts even to say this out loud, much less do something about it. Quite the opposite.

Mercifully, no one has yet described Islam as a religion of peace, but we can expect that clarification before the day is out, although the M-word still won’t cross anyone’s lips.

Meanwhile Theresa May complimented Londoners on their bravery in the face of a “potential act of terrorism” and expressed sympathy with those “who are caught up in these dreadful events.” She later talked about the “single evil ideology of Islamist extremism”, whatever that means. Certainly not the M-word.

Comrade Corbyn, who hates Jews but has never met a terrorist he couldn’t love, regretted the “brutal and shocking incidents” and thanked the emergency services.

The Muslim mayor of London Sadiq Khan repeated his party leader’s statement almost word for word.

All good, appropriate and predictable. But where’s the rage directed at the true culprits? Where, above all, is an answer to the perennial question invariably asked by the pragmatic English: “What are we going to do about it?”

This question is neither answered nor even asked. Not ever, not in any tangible manner pointing at a real solution – and certainly not four days before the general election that Comrade Corbyn, who hates Jews but loves Hamas and Hezbollah, may conceivably win.

Churchill, speaking at a time when Soviet-made German bombs rained on London, expressed sympathy for the victims too. But he also said: “We shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be, we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender.”

He missed a golden opportunity to deliver a prescient oration presaging the rhetoric favoured by his successors:

“I join all of you in deploring the ghastly atrocities perpetrated upon London. My thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families. However, at this moment of grief, I must caution you against blaming all Germans, or indeed all Nazis, for these dreadful events. The people dropping bombs on the East End of London are not acting as Germans, nor indeed as Nazis. They are Nazi-ists, the black, or rather brown, sheep in the healthy flock of the great German nation and the ideology it happens to favour at the moment. This ideology may be at odds with everything this realm espouses, but it is as deserving of respect in the spirit of diversity.”

Acts of Muslim terrorism are recurring with monotonous regularity, and I have to follow suit by saying the same things over and over again: we’re at war, different from the one 77 years ago, but a war nonetheless.

The sooner we realise this, identify the enemy and begin fighting “whatever the cost may be”, the better chance we have of surviving.

The fighting part should be left for those trained for it. But I’ll be happy to make my modest contribution to the first two parts.

We’re at war with Islam. Hence every Muslim must be regarded as an enemy alien, however unfair this might be in most cases. Those 3,000 already known to the police as potential murderers must be removed from the streets by any means available.

It’s possible that some aspects of English justice may be compromised in the process. They always are at wartime. This is often the worst, or at least longest-lasting, damage caused by war.

But – “whatever the cost may be”. For the only alternative to victory is defeat. Which in this case means the death of our nation, as assured as it could have been 77 years ago.

Margaret Court under PC attack

Margaret Court won more Grand Slam titles than any other woman in history, but she’s going to lose this shouting match.

When PC stormtroopers close ranks against someone, there can only be one winner. Mrs Court has found herself on the receiving end because she remarked that tennis is “full of lesbians”.

It took the stormtroopers minutes to marshal their forces. Riding their rainbow-coloured horses in the vanguard were three other former Grand Slam winners Martina Navratilova, Billie Jean King and Samantha Stosur. Martina immediately castigated Mrs Court as “a homophobe and a racist”, although neither the first nor especially the second follows from her remark.

Being lesbians, all three crusaders are in a weak position to dispute the factual aspect of Mrs Court’s remark, and nor is it their intention. In the distant past, people used to object to good women being branded lesbians. Now they object to good lesbians being branded lesbians.

Samantha still keeps one foot inside the closet, but the other two ladies proudly parade their perverse sexuality. Billie Jean once described herself as “a dyke with fat legs”, while two years ago Martina had the good taste to propose marriage to her girlfriend on bended knee in a crowded restaurant.

Anybody who follows tennis knows that Mrs Court was factually correct. This stands to reason.

Tennis is an aggressive game and, as numerous studies have proved, aggression is largely a function of testosterone. Women seldom start wars, do they?

It follows that professional tennis attracts a disproportionate number of women who are hormonally and psychologically close to men. I could name offhand dozens of known lesbians among women players, one with regret. I used to fancy Gigi Fernandez, who was gorgeous. It was heart-breaking to discover she was living with another player, Conchita Martinez.

My cracker-barrel explanation of this situation may be debatable, but the situation itself isn’t. Professional tennis indisputably has more than a statistically predictable number of lesbians.

Nor do the stormtroopers bother to deny it. They object not to the fact but to Mrs Court’s disapproval of it – especially since she’s on record as a fierce opponent of homomarriage.

Since her playing days, Mrs Court has become a Christian preacher, lamentably in the iffy Pentecostal confession. But whatever the denomination, she correctly says that not only Christianity but all Abrahamic religions regard homosexuality as a sin.

In fact, one Abrahamic religion executes homosexuals in variously imaginative ways, thereby creating a conflict of PC pieties. On the one hand, Islam satisfies PC multi-culti cravings. On the other hand, Muslims could be legitimately called homophobes and misogynists. Personally, I enjoy watching progressives tie themselves in knots trying to untangle this conundrum.

Yet on this issue there’s no conflict. Margaret Court has transgressed against the PC dicta and must be punished. For starters, Navratilova wants the Margaret Court Arena at the Australian Open to be renamed after a more acceptable personage. May I suggest Caitlyn ‘Bruce’ Jenner?

Or perhaps Andy Murray, who has joined the battle. “I don’t see why anyone has a problem with two people who love each other getting married,” he said. “If it’s two men, two women, that’s great… It’s not anyone else’s business. Everyone should have the same rights.”

Now Andy is an intelligent tennis player but that, alas, isn’t quite the same as an intelligent man. He clearly hasn’t thought about this issue as deeply as it requires.

First, marriage isn’t just about love. While it’s no longer invariably a union before God, it’s certainly one before the state, replete as marriage is with social, economic and demographic implications.

Hence it’s wrong to say that “it’s not anyone else’s business”. Both the state and society have their say, and not everyone has the same rights. For example, under the current subversive law Andy could marry a man – but not his brother Jamie. And if he should divorce his beautiful wife, he could marry any woman – but not his mother Judy.

Marrying anyone one pleases isn’t a matter of God-given right. The legalisation of homomarriage was a political act, which these days means a politically correct act. PC fascism rules the roost, with cockerels marrying other cockerels and hens marrying other hens to push through a pernicious, immoral and socially destructive ideology.

As both homo- and heterosexuals demonstrate, two people in love don’t necessarily cohabit or, if they do, don’t necessarily get married. In fact, about 60 per cent of cohabiting couples don’t end up tying the knot.

Homosexuals have lived together for centuries, in England unmolested. Even Oscar Wilde was convicted not for his predilection but for sex with minors. So why this sudden urge to get married?

Here’s another question, which is a kind of answer to the first one. Why is ‘correctness’ political and not, say, moral, ethical or social? Because for once our anomic activists are being truthful: PC is indeed a political tool designed to bring about tyranny.

No tyranny can be imposed without destroying all meaningful opposition. In this case the opposition comes from what could be broadly described as tradition or, even more broadly, Western civilisation.

For fascistic progressivism to triumph, Western civilisation has to be routed. Its religious and moral foundation, Judaeo-Christianity, has already been marginalised at best. Ditto, Western polity, reduced to spivs pandering to a braying mob. Ditto Western economics, rapidly heading for debtors’ prison. Now the PC crowd are destroying the family, the core unit of society.

You might say that the term fascistic is too emotive, but I don’t think so. Militant intolerance of opposing, especially traditional, views is a hallmark of fascism, however this is expressed. Initially different forms of expression vary only in the pejorative names screamed by the mob.

It could be ‘Jews’, ‘capitalists’, ‘whites’, ‘blacks’, ‘traitors’. Or, as is more fashionable in today’s West, ‘homophobes’. Typologically, neither the slogans nor the people who scream them differ all that much.

They’re all united by their hatred of the West and everything it has stood for over millennia. PC also means post-civilisation.

Ukraine-Russia conflict, resolved

Before you heave a sigh of relief, I hasten to disappoint you: Russia still occupies the Crimea and two other provinces of the Ukraine. Russians and Ukrainians are still killing one another, and the Russians are still getting entrenched on their stolen property.

So that conflict is proceeding apace, and there’s no end in sight. But another conflict is raging concurrently, this one involving neither the present nor the future but the past, not geography but history.

The opening salvo was fired by that renowned scholar Vlad Putin, who, on a visit to Paris, reminded the smug French that two of their royal dynasties, the Bourbons and the Valois, were founded by “Russian Anna, Queen of France”.

He was referring to Princess Anna of Kiev, who married Henri I in 1051 and indeed became the ancestor of all subsequent French kings. That much is true, or almost true: Anna wasn’t exactly queen but Henri’s queen consort. And, when Henri died in 1060, she became regent to her son Philip I.

But let’s not quibble about petty details – Vlad was close enough when identifying Anna as a royal personage. It’s when he identified her as Russian that Ukrainians took umbrage.

President Poroshenko accused Vlad of trying to steal Anna from the Ukraine as he had already stolen the Crimea and two other provinces. And the deputy head of Poroshenko’s administration wrote to his “dear French friends” that “Putin tried to mislead you today – Anne de Kiev, reine de France, is from Kiev, not Moscow (Moscow did not even exist by [sic] that time).”

Fair enough, I suppose that’s why she’s called Anna of Kiev, not Anna of Moscow. It’s also true that Moscow didn’t exist at the time. And that’s how, extrapolating from these indisputable facts, I can settle the argument between those two countries.

Chaps, you’re both wrong. Even worse, you’re ignorant. Worse still, you’re driven by ideology and petty jingoism, which are the worst possible accompaniments of ignorance.

For it’s not just Moscow that didn’t exist in the eleventh century. Neither did the Ukraine. Neither, as a matter of fact, did Russia. What did exist was Kievan Rus, a distant progenitor of both countries.

Anna was a princess of the Scandinavian Rurik dynasty that had founded and ruled Kiev since the ninth century. Her father was grand prince Yaroslav the Wise, whose father was Vladimir the Great, who baptised Kiev 1,000 years ago.

Diasporic Ukrainians, playing fast and loose with history, inscribed Vladimir’s statue in London’s Holland Park with the words ‘Ruler of Ukraine’. This, though at Vladimir’s time the Ukraine as a geopolitical entity was still half a millennium removed from being a twinkle in anyone’s eye. Vladimir was the ruler of the Ukraine in the same sense in which Alaric was the Chancellor of Germany.

Now Russia was never identified as such even as late as the sixteenth century. For example, Elizabethan maps refer to what now is Russia as either Muscovy or Tartary. In fact, Russia qua Russia was more or less created by Elizabeth’s contemporary (and hapless suitor) Ivan the Terrible, the last grand prince of the Rurik dynasty and the first Russian tsar.

In a way, one can understand both countries’ desire to claim Anna as their own: she was a remarkable woman. Unlike her husband, she was literate, and in several languages, although her French never did get to be up to snuff.

Henri signed the marriage contract with a cross, while Anna did so in the Latin alphabet. Not only was she uniquely educated for a woman of her time, but Anna also inherited her father’s wisdom (not to mention much of his wealth, which provided a most welcome infusion into France’s depleted treasury).

Henri valued her judgement in matters of state, and many of his decrees bear the inscription “With the consent of my wife Anna”. No other queen consort in French history was honoured with a similar inscription.

Anna was also a sage regent to her son Philip I, although she was driven out of the court after she married a nobleman who had divorced his wife for Anna. She then founded a convent in Senlis, in whose grounds she’s supposed to be buried.

All that apart, the unsightly squabble over Anna between two countries at the outskirts of Europe (the Ukraine actually means ‘outskirts’ in Slavic languages) says little about her but a lot about them.

It’s a squabble not between two lines of historical thought, nor two interpretations of original sources, but between two petty, ignorant chauvinisms, with both parties trying to score political points. History has indeed been described as retrospective politics, or words to that effect.

However, using history that way is tantamount to disfranchising and debauching the past, robbing it of truth, honesty and dignity. All countries are occasionally guilty of that sort of thing to some extent, not least France in whose capital Vlad insulted the Ukrainians so.

According to French historiography, France actually won many battles that traditionally have been scored for England, such as Agincourt and Waterloo. Yes, say the French, in purely technical, soulless, Anglo-Saxon terms, England might have squeaked by in those encounters. But, more important, France won a moral victory, displaying chivalry and valour way in excess of anything shown by les unsporting rosbifs.

Yet there’s something endearing, if ever so slightly risible, about that kind of national pride. The exchange between Russia and the Ukraine isn’t endearing at all. In a way it’s as malignant as the former’s aggression against the latter.