Nicholas Whyte, who lives and works in Brussels, gives his reaction to the terrorist attacks in Brussels yesterday. Go and read it – it’s worth it. A sample:
As with any awful event, there’s a temptation to grasp for easy explanations. I will give in to that temptation. It seems to my jaundiced eye that, dreadful as they were, yesterday’s attacks were botched. Maelbeek is actually the wrong metro station to attack – both Schuman, the stop before, and Arts-Loi, the stop after, would surely be much more attractive targets, being much busier intersections on the network (and also both recently renovated as prestige architectural projects). Only two of three planned explosions in the airport happened, the third attacker apparently losing his nerve and running away. To adopt a Trump-ism, these guys were losers.
This happened because they are losing. Less than a week ago, a major figure in the terror movement was arrested in Brussels; perhaps yesterday was revenge for his arrest, perhaps it was rushed into because they were afraid he would start talking (or knew that he already had). On the ground, their allies and sponsors are losing territory and resources in Syria and Iraq. I wrote a week ago about violence as story-telling, in the Irish context. This is an attempt to write a story about the weakness of our interconnected world, attacking places where people travel and meet, where many nationalities and cultures join together and build together.
It is a narrative that must not and will not win.
Amen to that.