Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Another tragedy

My wife and I were getting ready to go to bed last night when the first news of an 'incident' in Manchester began to feature on the two main news channels. The situation was somewhat confused, and we both hoped that whatever the cause, it would turn out to be nothing serious.

We were both wrong.

When we woke up at 7.30am this morning and saw the news, we were both saddened to find that at least twenty two people (including the bomber) are dead, and nearly sixty people were seriously injured.

I cannot conceive of what would induce someone to think that killing oneself – and a lot of innocent people – with a bomb is going to change a single thing in this world other than to cause massive grief and sorrow to the families of the victims. This has been shown time and time again ... and yet despite this some people still think that self-immolation that causes the deaths of others serves some sort of higher cause. In my opinion, it does not.

Needless to say our thoughts and condolences go out to the families of everyone who was killed or injured in this incident, and we offer our support to all of those who have been affected by it, whether they were event attendees or responders.

It has been pointed out in the media that yesterday was the fourth anniversary of the murder of Fusilier Lee Rigby in Woolwich, South East London, and the two incidents have been tentatively linked.

As I live only about a mile from the scene of the murder, I was aware of the fact that at some time during the past week the memorial to Lee had been vandalised, and that yesterday there was a ceremony at the memorial in remembrance of him. I hope against hope that the date chosen for yesterday's attack was purely coincidental, as is the fact that Lee came from Middleton in Greater Manchester.

22 comments:

  1. Sad day, made worse by knowing it won't be the last.

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    1. Rob Young,

      Unfortunately, you are right.

      All the best,

      Bob

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  2. A sad day. Every day one gets the increasing feeling that this world is in self-destruct mode - that WE are the next big annihilation event, and we are already happening. Even in this part of the world, this sort of thing still touches us.

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    1. Archduke Piccolo,

      It is a very sad day ... and one suspects that the news will get worse as the day progresses.

      The world does seem to be becoming a more dangerous place ... but one wonders sometimes if that perception is due more to the fact that we now have 24 hour rolling news broadcasts that make us aware of things than even thirty years ago would have taken hours if not days for us to know about.

      All the best,

      Bob

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    2. Awful news for everyone, and absolutely tragic for Manchester and the families affected. Unfortunately, the amount of attention that these events get given in the media is exactly what the people who arrange these kinds of things do it for.

      Best wishes,
      Aaron

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    3. Prufrock (Aaron),

      Unfortunately it is not possible to stifle the media attention such incidents attract, however much we might wish to be able to do so.

      I understand that the so-called 'Islamic State' has claimed that the bomber was one of their 'soldiers' ... but I doubt it. It is more likely that the perpetrator was a home-grown fanatic rather than one specifically trained and prepared for this particular attack.

      All the best,

      Bob

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  3. The 1996 IRA attack in Manchester involved a 1500kg truck bomb, 212 were injured despite the efforts to evacuate the area.

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    1. Nigel Drury,

      In 1996 the IRA did give a warning of sorts, and although many were injured and a lot of damage was done, no one were killed.

      All the best,

      Bob

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    2. The IRA were bad enough but they were nationalists using terror to try to achieve their objectives. These modern day Islamic terrorists are religious fanatics who see killing 'infidels' or apostates' as a goal in itself. they cannot be negotiated with or reasoned with, only intercepted and killed.

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    3. James James,

      It would appear that the current crop of terrorists are doing it in the misguided belief that they are doing God's will ... and their leaders encourage them to believe in an extremely narrow view of the world, where anyone who is not like them deserves to die.

      All the best,

      Bob

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  4. Really upsetting news this morning, young people enjoying their lives. Devastating.

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    1. Lee,

      Such events must be every parent's nightmare.

      Our thoughts and sympathy go out to everyone who has been affected by this terrible attack.

      All the best,

      Bob

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  5. Bob,
    Terrible- horrific...I cannot write what I actually think and feel about terrorists and terrorism...shear gutless scum! There is no sense to it all- when will they learn- our free world will continue stoic despite the loss of innocent people.

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    1. Kev Robertson,

      I am currently watching the TV news, and they have just announced that the youngest victim was eight years old. How can killing someone like that be justified?

      What a very sad day.

      All the best,

      Bob

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    2. Bob,
      Oh-dear. I watched the 6 o'clock News on TV with live reports from Manchester...pandamonia and tragic. I've shed some tears to-night for the young...it is just horrific that terrorists have stooped just about as low as you can go...targeting kids and teenagers....I feel for the families of the victims and injured - what must they be going through...God will be with them.
      I've taught hundreds of adolescents from 11yrs old to 18...teaching Industrial Arts -over 20 years service to their Education...they were my children - and to loose just one of them would be a travesty...I feel for the Parents and Relatives and Friends. Our thoughts and hearts are with you there in the UK. Regards. KEV.

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    3. Kev Robertson,

      Sue and I first heard the news just after 11.20pm last night. We stayed watching the TV news until just after midnight, at which point the situation was still very confused. By the time we awoke this morning, things were clearer ... starkly clearer.

      I worked for nearly forty years in education, doing my bit to help to improve the lives of those who passed though my hands. During that time I had to deal with the aftermath of the deaths of several young people. One died from a virulent form of cancer, another was killed in a motorcycle accident, and the third was killed by a local gang of drug dealers because he was in the wrong place at the wrong time. These were never easy situations to cope with.

      To target a concert that was aimed at young people - mainly female - shows a callous disregard for the lives of other human beings. To call the people who do such things animals is wrong; animals don't do things like this.

      I understand that the police have just made an arrest, and if it transpires that the person who has been arrested was involved in perpetrating this outrage, then I hope that they spend the rest of their lives in prison.

      All the best,

      Bob

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    4. Bob,
      Yes- I hear that the Police have done well and had arrested an accomplice- 43 years old...Surely somehow the Police and Detectives will successfully unravel the lead up to the attack and get hold of any support network operating in the UK. I think all good and reasonable and peace loving people pray for a final solution to terrorism...will we see the end of it in our life time. Regards. KEV.

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    5. Kev Robertson,

      The police and Security Services seem to be doing their utmost to find the bomber's support network.

      I do hope that you are right, and that we will see an end to these horrific acts of terrorism sooner rather than later.

      All the best,

      Bob

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  6. Replies
    1. Geordie an Exiled FoG,

      I think that's how most right-minded people feel today.

      All the best,

      Bob

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  7. Sad news indeed. We must not become used to such events, nor should we over-react to them. I believe the world has always been a dangerous and violent place.
    It may be the nature of the violence changes. If anything, I think it's less violent overall these days, but I don't have stats at the ready to back that up.
    In any case, it doesn't diminish the impact on the victims and their families and friends or on our society as a whole. At the same time, it doesn't accomplish anything for the perpetrators or their backers.

    My condolences go out to anyone affected by the violence.

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    1. Fitz-Badger,

      The perpetrators of attacks like this recent one are using the media and the way it affects people's perceptions to enhance the actual impact, and making them feel less safe and secure. Because this event happened in Manchester and involved lots of young people, it has had a far greater impact (and coverage) than - for example - a car bomb going off in the Middle East where far more people were killed and injured.

      Thinking back over my life, I cannot remember a time when there wasn't somewhere in the world where terrorists were not active and killing people, often in large numbers. Because we all tend to live in the present, we tend to forget what has happened before. The world is a dangerous place ... but hasn't it always been so?

      All the best,

      Bob

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