This blog started in 2005, and one of the first things it had to respond to was the terrifying series of attacks in 2005.
12 years later, and terribly, a mass terror attack has struck the UK - killing over 20 people, and dangerously harming many more. That many of the victims were kids and teens out to have fun at a summery concert, is all the more reason to be horrified. This was classic terrorism, meant to inflict great fear, and sorrow, and loss, on innocent people, for maximum publicity for their cause.
One does not have to be political to recognise that it is wrong to kill people, except in self-defence (if even then). Politics is not going to solve this problem, however, so long as a small group of radicals seek to destabilise, weaken, even destroy, democracy in Western countries.
While it is true they are unlikely to destroy the West, these acts can certainly tilt the West radically to the right, as we have seen of late. There is no tit-for-tat that can justify killing these people in Manchester. Trump's bombs are not a sanction or excuse.
Britain may need to look more closely, as it has done before, at its history and relations with America, and a legacy of colonialism in the middle east, but surely, today is not such a day. When killers are prepared to take the lives of even the most innocent of our people, it would appear, even if we were all spotless, we would still be targets.
I will resist complaining about tweeps who made jokes as the deaths mounted, or who thought this massacre was about their pop idol Ms Grande, and not the victims. Nor will I quote (here) any Manchester bands, or seek for some hope or good from this event. I will not forgive Morrissey, but chose to for now ignore his latest semi-racist rants as delusional sad bleats from a once great god.
There is no good in this event. It was a terrible thing to happen, and it has darkened our day, our year, and the election to come. I am heartbroken. So are you. Manchester is a great city, culturally, athletically, and historically, and its people are creative, industrious, and decent.
Ms May has claimed she provides stability and safe hands. We are not safe at the moment, though. Not in the least. I would offer prayers, but some of the dead may not want my prayers. Why presume? I can offer my thoughts, but so what? Who am I to seek to corner the market on grief or grieving? All I can say is, I am so sorry this has happened, to you, to us. To Manchester.
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