An act of cowardice was committed around 10:30 pm on Monday in Manchester, United Kingdom. I saw some reports about it last night on Reddit but I didn’t pay them any attention because my eyes were on the crazy memes and photos people had posted. It wasn’t until I visited Twitter that I realized what had happened. While the news was startling, I was not really surprised that something of this nature had occurred. Extremists will continue to target the West, and we’d better be prepared for more acts of cowardly terror in the future or thousands more innocent lives will be lost.

From the New York Times:

■ Twenty-two people were killed and 59 others were wounded in a bombing at about 10:30 p.m. on Monday evening in the foyer outside the main hall of the Manchester Arena.

■ Prime Minister Theresa May said the police were treating the incident as “an appalling terrorist attack.”

■ The police say a man detonated an “improvised explosive device” and died at the scene. Investigators say they believe the man acted alone, but they are trying to determine whether he was part of a wider network. Mrs. May said law enforcement believed they knew the identity of the attacker, but were not ready to confirm his name. There were reports that the explosive device used nuts, bolts or nails as shrapnel.

■ The blast occurred just as a concert by the American pop star Ariana Grande was ending. The police say children were among those killed. Ms. Grande was not injured.Continue reading the main story

■ Britain’s leading political parties agreed to suspend campaigning for the June 8 general election out of respect for the victims of the attack.

From The Guardian is the following statement from Queen Elizabeth II:

The whole nation has been shocked by the death and injury in Manchester last night of so many people, adults and children, who had just been enjoying a concert. I know I speak for everyone in expressing my deepest sympathy to all who have been affected by this dreadful event and especially to the families and friends of those who have died or were injured. I want to thank all the members of the emergency services who have responded with such professionalism and care. And I would like to express my admiration for the way the people of Manchester have responded, with humanity and compassion, to this act of barbarity.

From the Independent:

  • Thousands of people, including many children and teenagers, were leaving an Ariana Grande concert and heading towards Victoria Station when the blast hit the foyer. It is the worst terror attack in the UK since 56 people were killed in the London bombings on 7 July 2005.

  • Police are treating the Manchester bombing as a terrorist incident and are investigating whether the bomber was acting alone or as part of a wider network.
  • No group has yet issued a claim of responsibility for the massacre, which has sparked an outpouring of grief and solidarity from leaders and musicians around the world. The Prime Minister condemned the “appalling terrorist attack” and was chairing a meeting of the Government’s emergency Cobra committee this morning.

And from The Slate

Some observers on Twitter are using this moment to take cheap shots at Grande’s music and roll their eyes at the makeup of her audience, as if a disproportionately young, female fanbase makes an artist somehow unserious. “MULTIPLE CONFIRMED FATALITIES at Manchester Arena. The last time I listened to Ariana Grande I almost died too,” one Boston-based journalist tweeted. Meanwhile, some reports are saying dozens of unaccompanied children are holed up at hotels, waiting alone until their parents and guardians can come find them. These girls are survivors of an orchestrated attack on girls and girlhood, a massive act of gender-based violence.

I’m no Ariana Grande fan at all – millennial music is noise to my ears – but I feel sorry for her that this had to happen. She will be affected by this act for the rest of her life. The survivors will also suffer the rest of their lives – flashbacks and anxiety issues and panic attacks as the result of PTSD – and that is a tragedy. I hate it for the Muslim people who are not a part of the extremism that demands blood sacrifices as they are being demonized along with ISIS and all the other terrorist groups the same way that all Blacks or all Whites or all Hispanics are lumped together when one is (or a few are) to blame.


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