Thursday, May 25, 2017


"A man with an “improvised” bomb killed at least 22 people and injured 59 outside a concert arena filled with teenagers in central Manchester on Monday night, in the worst terrorism incident in the UK since 2005. Police said the bomber, who died in the explosion, detonated the device around 10.30pm, shortly after the concert by US pop star Ariana Grande at Manchester Arena. Among the dead were young children, police said. Isis claimed responsibility for the attack, although the jihadi group has in the past taken credit for terror incidents that were later found to be unconnected. Dan Coats, the US director of national intelligence, said Isis’s role had yet to be confirmed, adding: “They claim responsibility for virtually every attack.” Prime Minister Theresa May said security services believed they knew the identity of the bomber behind the “callous terrorist attack”, which was “among the worst terrorism we have experienced in the United Kingdom”. “We struggle to comprehend the warped and twisted mind that sees a room of young people as an opportunity for carnage,” Mrs May said outside 10 Downing Street. Police conducted two raids in Whalley Range and Fallowfield in south Manchester in connection with their investigation and arrested a 23-year-old man outside a Morrison’s supermarket in Chorlton. Ian Hopkins, chief constable of Greater Manchester Police, said authorities were working to determine whether the attacker “was acting alone or was part of a network”'
Andy Bounds & Robert Wright, "Terror bombing kills 22 in Manchester Arena". The Financial Times. 23 May 2017 in
Among the twenty two dead and fifty nine injured are children. Youngsters who had gone out to see an artist – 23 year-old Ariana Grande – who is particularly popular with young girls. In the hours after a lone suicide bomber detonated a device, in the foyer near the box office as the 21,000-strong audience made its way out at the close of the concert, there was confusion and scenes of heartbreaking desperation as parents searched for their loved ones.‎ Manchester rallied and the emergency services rushed towards the danger, not away from it, reminding us all of the debt we owe our public servants.... Britain and the West are up against a bunch of scumbags prepared to slaughter children at concerts. We need clear-eyed calm determination and utter ruthlessness in taking them on. We need a deep commitment to security, intelligence and policing. We do not need hand-wringing and equivocation.
Iain Martin, "Horror In Manchester". Reaction. 23 May 2017, in
The massacre in Manchester this week, follows of course a series of similar massacres in Western Europe and the United States in the years since 2001. And again and again, we hear from our bien-pensant, liberal-bourgeois, post-enlightenment, commentators the following chants (yes, they are that ritualized): a) 'Islam is a religion of peace'; b) that we should not stigmatize the Muslim community in our midst as that would be racism and or Islamophobia. Albert Einstein once defined madness as someone who keeps repeating certain actions notwithstanding how disfunctional said actions are. Well, employing Einstein' definition, our bien-pensant liberals are the very epitome of mad, insofar as they ritualistically refuse, nay adamantly refuse to see the problem for what it is: Islam is indeed the problem. Far from being a 'religion of peace', Islam is and has always been a religions which have viewed holy war in highly positive terms. From the so-called prophet Mohammid, to the present, violence is viewed and has been employed to spread Islam far and wide. As Iain Martin correctly states, what is needed is 'clear-eyed calm determination and utter ruthlessness' in ridding the West of the incubus of Radical Islam in all its forms and shapes. If the West fails to remedy and quickly the problem of Islam and the radicalism that radiates from Muslim communities which are based in the West, we can only expect that the horrible prediction made twenty-years ago, by the leading literary & cultural critic in the Anglophone world, George Steiner will indeed be fulfilled in the years to come:
"Despite the detergent of ubiquity of the planetary media, differences remain profound. Fundamentalism, that blind lunge towards simplification, towards the infantile comforts of imposed discipline, is immensely on the march. In regards to Islam, European democracies stand increasingly bewildered and vulnerable. Prognostication is usually specious. It does look possible, however that the coming centuries will witness fierce conflicts between irreconcilable cultures, between antithetical world-visions even more divided by mutual fears and hatreds than are the ideological and ethnic camps of today 1."
1. George Steiner. Errata: an examined life. (1997), p.135. Time has not changed Steiner's pessimism in this respect, as in his most recent book just published in the United Kingdom, he states as follows: 'You are very harsh toward Islam, why is that? G[eorge] S[teiner]: First, because the threat at present is becoming increasingly cruel....I don't believe in ecumenism and I don't believe there can be agreement. Malraux predicted that the religious wars of the twenty-first century would be the greatest in history." See: George Steiner. A Long Saturday: conversations. (2017), p. 36.