Appearing on an NDTV panel discussion last week, I was struck by how closely my co-panelists stuck to the “default” position. They kept referring to “looming images” from Iraq and Palestine; and to the frustration and “anger” bred by American and British foreign policy. There were obligatory references to social deprivation etc. etc. And as for the three Indian doctors suspected to have been behind the London-Glasgow plot, they were simply “misguided” individuals acting alone. There was much hand-wringing when the anchor underlined the fact that Muslims had been behind all recent acts of terrorism. Yes, it was worrying. Of course, the community condemned any violence committed in the name of Islam, a peaceful religion. And, indeed, there was need for introspection and discussion. But all this was hedged in with so many “ifs” and “buts” that the whole debate4 seemed like a huge exercise in denial. (Please explain the meaning of the two phrases in bold in the above paragraph.)
One of the meanings given in the dictionary.com for "handwringging" is " the nervous grasping or squeezing of the hands as a sign of these feelings. I hope it is grasping or squeezing of one's own hand and not of any other person's hand.