The case for fighting back against terrorists

British police have issued advice on what to do if you're caught up in a Paris-style terrorist situation.

Before going any further, I should stress that you are vanishingly unlikely ever to need their advice. I mentioned in this newspaper two weeks ago that we fear terrorism for the same reason that we play the lottery: Our brains are bad at computing probability. On the cold statistics, you're more likely to drown in your bath than to die in a terrorist attack, more likely to be killed by a child than by a jihadi.

Britain's counterterrorism experts may believe that those odds have altered, of course; or they may simply be covering every eventuality. At any rate, the National Police Chiefs Council has decided to tell you that, in the event of a Bataclan-type atrocity, you should run or hide.

If you have a safe exit route, they say, use it. If you haven't, and are obliged to take cover instead, then make sure your mobile phone is silent; remember that bullets can pass through brick, wood and glass; move away from the door; and, when safe, call the police. Don't play dead.

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