This past Monday, an inhumane act was performed in Manchester, England. It was a bit after 10:30 BST when the suspected suicide bomber by the name Salman Abedi detonated a home-made bomb in Manchester’s Arena at the wake of a concert performance by Ariana Grande on her Dangerous Woman Tour. Grande had just finished her encore, and people streamed towards the exits. Parents waited for their kids in the large public foyer that connects the arena to the Manchester Victoria train station. Seconds later, the bomb exploded and shook the arena. People started screaming and running everywhere, and anywhere. The first call to the police was at 10:33 P.M. BST, and since then, 22 people have been reported dead, and 59 have been reported as injured. More than 240 emergency calls were made, 60 ambulances called, and 400 police officers attained. This has been named as the worst terrorist attack in Manchester’s history.
The British-born, son of Libyan parents, suspect Abedi, has been thought to have been planning this attack on the Arena for at least a year. He had traveled to Libya in April, and returned five days before the attack, stationed in a complex that was not his usual home.
We know only this much about this unfathomable onslaught, yet it is enough to make us question if we are safe anywhere. With this most recent attack, the feeling that terrorism can occur anywhere and at any time, is reinforced. We could never begin to understand why ISIS and other radical groups lash out repeatedly, but we should begin to understand that we are always in constant threat, a reality we must unfortunately face. It is unclear why Manchester was chosen for this attack, but the idea that it could happen anywhere must not escape us. It is a sad realization, but it appears as if such attacks will be a fact of life for the foreseeable future. At this moment, we must unite. Unite against terrorism. Unite against hate. Unite against our fear. Unite against their power. Unite with those around us. Unite with Manchester.
As the Lord Mayor of Manchester Eddy Newman states, “the people of Manchester will remember the victims forever and we will defy the terrorists by working together to create cohesive, diverse communities that are stronger together. We are the many, they are the few”. We stand in solidarity with Manchester, forever holding the bee as a symbol close to our hearts.