On Friday, November 29th, a man armed with a knife and wearing what would later be found to be a fake suicide vest went on a spree of violence that killed two and injured three others. The incident took place on the historic London Bridge in the heart of the Capital of the United Kingdom. The attacker, 28 year old Usman Khan, attacked several people out walking on the bridge around 2:30pm. Two men, one armed with a fire extinguisher and the other with a narwhal tusk, were able to contain Khan until police arrived. Khan was eventually killed by police at the scene. The bridge is a charged location for the British as it was the scene of a 2017 terrorist attack that killed eight people and injured 48. In the hours following the naming of the suspect it has come to light that Khan, born and raised in the UK, was already convicted by a British court and sentenced to 16 years for a plot to bomb several prominent London buildings including the Stock Exchange but was released early.
The Atlantic posted a story on Friday that looks at the political implications of the attack, particularly in light of the upcoming election in the UK. The terror attacks will require significant leadership from the Prime Minister Boris Johnson, something those on the left feel is lacking. Despite the political ramifications, these moments of tragedy define nations as well as governments. From the Atlantic:
“Today’s attack on London Bridge, using the same methods of violence and terror as two years ago, is a challenge to Johnson and Corbyn to show the country who they are, where their instincts lie.”
Breitbart published a piece by James Delingpole that approaches the attack from a good news bad news perspective. While tragic, events like these show us what humans are made of, both the profoundly good and the purely evil. This attack was no different, two essentially unarmed men put themselves in harms way to stope the attack while a convicted terrorist was given early release only to return to the work of ideological violence. What is shown in the events of Friday, however, is that there is a problem of domestic, homegrown terrorism in England that the nation has yet to come to grips with, if even understand. From the article:
“There is still no appetite in the British Establishment to deal comprehensively with the home grown Muslim terrorist threat. This is clear at almost every level – what our politicians, both Labour and Conservative, are saying; what our senior police are saying.”