The thoughts and prayers of The Troth are with the people of the United Kingdom this day. Yesterday the Ariana Grande concert at Manchester Arena was ended, and the crowds, largely composed of teenage girls and a smattering of parents, were streaming out when a suicide bomber with links to ISIS detonated his homemade bomb to kill as many as he could. Twenty two dead, including several children, and fifty nine injured, including a further twelve children under the age of sixteen.
The nithling responsible for this was born in the UK of Libyan immigrant parents, and radicalized with ISIS sympathetic views. It will be some time before the degree of connection, be it doctrinal only, or actual direction and support will be clear, but it is clear his motivation was to inflict as much harm as possible on innocent children, in support of ISIS vision of intolerant radical Islam.
Acts of terror, especially religious terror are designed to do two things. They are designed to instil fear, and to create or increase divisions. There is no chance that killing any number of teen or pre-teens at a concert will actually affect the power of the United Kingdom, either as an economic and political force, or as a military power. That is not an achievable end using the means of suicide bombing.
What can be done is to sow division. It is easier to radicalize young Muslims when the bulk of the citizens choose to attack all visible members of the Muslim community for the deeds of the few. That will drive more into the arms of the radicals, and do more work for the recruitment than a thousand videos from ISIS. It is easier to convince young Muslims that the visions of ISIS for a radical Islamic state imposed by force is possible when intolerant acts by Muslims are permitted to infringe upon the rights and freedoms of persons living in the United Kingdom.
The reality is this, over forty thousand United Kingdom civilians were killed, and a far greater numbered injured during the German bombing campaigns during WWII, without any loss of resolve or war fighting ability. No amount of explosive, nor any amount of civilian blood could break the will of a nation that chose to come together in united resolve. If the Luftwaffe could not do it, no amount of suicide bomber could possibly hope to.
The people of United Kingdom are unconquerable, so long as they remain just that; united. The UK has never been a unitary power, never been one single folk. Britain has been the farthest shore of every wave of immigration since the first tribe pushed into Europe, and its richness of culture is woven out of threads from each and every wave of migration. The whole is rather greater than the sum of its parts, the United Kingdom must use this attack, as every attack in the past to come together.
There can be no tolerance for hatred. None at all. There can be no safe podium, pulpit or alter from which to teach hatred for any group for the crime of disagreeing with you. Those who chose to embrace violence as a means, and who choose violence against children as a preference, must not be tolerated at all. Understand it is the goal of terrorism to drive extremist views from all sides. There must be as little toleration for targeting those of Middle Eastern descent as there is of Islamic radicals for targeting every expression of freedom, especially for women that their hate filled little world cannot abide.
Muslims are not the enemy. Radical Islam is no more Islam than the AFA represents my views, or the KKK represents the average Christian. There are those of every religious orientation, every political view who are extremist by choice; who determine that simply not agreeing with them is reason enough to justify any act of violence.
As a society, we have the choice to allow acts of terror to turn us into extremists, to simply decide whose most violent fringes would emerge the blood soaked victor, or not. We can choose to say that our society cannot be held hostage, that our rights as individuals to believe, to worship, to love, to work, to create and express, cannot be taken away from us by force. We chose in this, as in every generation not to be ruled by fear. We can choose not to permit extremism to flourish.
The people of the United Kingdom right now are showing the greatness of their spirit by coming together. They will not give up what makes them a great people by turning on each other. Those who came to the UK to be part of that great society will be welcome tomorrow, as they were yesterday. No radical bomber will force the British people to turn against those who have come to their shores with the dream of becoming a part of that great dream of the United Kingdom. I ask you join me in praying that the people of the UK find the strength and wisdom not to allow Radical Islam to be free to spread its hatred and open cries for violence where those who are perhaps not strong of character, or of good mental health can be easily swayed into acts of tragic violence like last nights. I ask as well that the people of the UK find the strength within their sole not to seve their enemies ends by demonizing those blameless folk of Middle Eastern descent who had no part, and no sympathies with the actions of this poor deluded nithling, and the hate filled ISIS which teaches the murder of children as a political tool.
To those people who stepped forward to care for those children unable to reunite with their parents due to the confusion of the bombing and its aftermath, I ask my gods and your own ancestors to bless you for living up to the highest standards of your storied island nation. Those who come together today to remember those who were lost, and hurt, I ask the gods bless and keep you for having the greatness of spirit that embodies the United Kingdom, even in this politically contentious and divisive age.
John T Mainer, Redesman of The Troth