The Russian Afghan war and the arms and money the US gave to the mujahideen, plus our Afghan and Iraq wars, along with the internet as a way of spreading discontent, helped turn a pathetically small number of west-hating malcontents into a growing anti-western movement. Such a movement hates and will attack all western countries, not just those which attacked etc. We cannot deny our part in radicalising part of a generation
• The underlying reasons for extremists who take violent action may be varied and complex but there is no doubt that many of those attracted by Islamic State and other fundamentalist ideologies are psychologically fragile individuals in search of some form of certainty (the final solution, for a suicide bomber). The result of war and violence is a generational legacy of trauma, a major cause of psychological fragility. Conclusion: fewer wars would produce fewer terrorists.
• Theresa May quite rightly condemned the Manchester attack for “its appalling, sickening cowardice, deliberately targeting innocent, defenceless children and young people”. The same , when asked last July in the Commons by the SNP’s George Kerevan if she was prepared to authorise a nuclear attack strike that could kill hundreds of thousands of men, women and children, gave an immediate, unqualified “yes”.
• Theresa May’s attempt to blame Jeremy Corbyn for the Manchester bombing struck me – and, I guess, a lot of other people – as superficial, insulting and deeply unworthy of a prime minister. Not everyone likes Corbyn, but to label him a terrorist sympathiser is beneath contempt. I hope others will join me in voting against her in the next election.