Two knife-wielding assailants entered the church of Saint-Etienne-Du-Rouvray in France during the service. They took hostage some of the parishioners and nuns and killed the priest. When police arrived, they shot the terrorists.
If this hadn’t been the fourth act of terrorism in the last few days in Europe, it would have been something of a sensation. Now it’s routine.
After the events in Nice we wrote that this is a new type of terrorism that cancels all previous rules of combatting it. Carrying out terrorist attacks of this new type neither requires long preparation nor contacts with like-minded persons, nor an organization — or even special skills.
It’s enough to want to kill and have something you can kill with: a car (a truck, preferably), an axe, a knife (with a knife you can kill 20 people in a row, if they’re handicapped; or just one, but a priest). A minimum of skill and a little luck will help you to self-destruct with a loud explosion in a crowd (being a suicide-bomber is, technically possible for every one of us). If you have access to a gun, you can turn the supermarket into a slaughterhouse.
But there’s one thing to keep in mind: what happens now on the European continent, in all of its bloody horror, is just child’s play compared to the routine of the Greater Middle East, democratized courtesy of Europe and the US.“20 victims after an explosion in Baghdad” is routine now in a city inhabited by relatively young people, who still remember it when it was safe and even prosperous.
Until recently, Europeans weren’t expecting this routine, even in a weaker version, to arrive in Europe. But it was based on only one argument: “Something like this hasn’t happened in Europe for a long time”.
People believe their well-being comes with an eternal guarantee. And that’s where they’re mistaken.
Originally appeared at Na Linii. Translated by Xenia Zinoviev