I know, I know, you’d prefer to be called a terrorist. You’d like to think you were fighting the good fight for your people – whoever they are – or your beliefs – whatever they were – but I’m not going to call you a terrorist. The term terrorist, in a weird way, gives you more dignity than you deserve. I think I’m right in saying there isn’t a lot of terror on the ground today. Britons, and more specifically Londoners, don’t go in much for terror any more. If anything, there’s more of a sense of weary disgust and an overwhelming compassion for the victims.
You see, we’ve seen the tactics you employ all too often in the past. Back in the day the Irish Republicans sent mortars through the windows of Downing Street or assassinated prominent public figures or blew up car bombs outside Harrods. Before that there was the First of May group, and the Anarchists, and the Scottish Nationalists…the list goes on. London has always been a target for the zealots, the fanatics and the deranged. It’s the price of being the centre of the world.
Sure, the press will have a field day with the events in Westminster. They’ll try and dress you up as some bogyman to sell copy. They’ll try and create a mythology around the story. The government will use it as an excuse to put more police on the streets or generally have more guns in the centre of London, but eventually they’ll get bored of that. Racists will claim the story as their own and use it to justify their own stupidity. Panicky children on social media will burble and cry and signal their virtue with the #PrayForLondon hashtag. Everyone will wonder how this could happen. Whenever random brutality occurs, speculation forms in the vacuum left behind. But eventually you’ll be revealed as some sad, lonely wanker from an isolated community who turned to a radicalised doctrine in a desperate attempt to inject some meaning into his pointless life. You’ll be just another example of human stupidity.
You see, for people like you the ideology you cling to isn’t enough to give you validity. Whether you think you’re fighting the good fight, or the holy war, or whatever you’ve been spoon-fed by cynical ideologues, you’re wrong. You’re not furthering a cause. You’re not changing the world. You’re not killing yourself and innocent people because you’re a hero. You’re just being a wanker.
It hurts me to say that the people you killed didn’t die as casualties in some great cause because it makes their deaths seem pointless. As human beings, whenever someone dies in a random event, the gut reaction is to create a narrative and try and explain it. This was a senseless and horrible event and no amount of explaining will make it go away. But I know that were you alive today you’d desperately like to see your selfish, empty actions transformed into some grand psychodrama playing out on the world stage. The stark reality is that they, like you, died for nothing, but their virtue is that they were innocent. It takes courage to be innocent and you didn’t even have that. You were a coward.
I don’t believe there’s a hell for you to be sent to. I prefer to think you lived in your own private hell every day – the hell of being a coward and a wanker. I’m only sorry that people had to die because you thought you had a shot at greatness along the way. You didn’t. You were doomed from the start because you were you.
We don’t fear people like you any more. Our security services swat your kind away a couple of times a week like some twisted game of Space Invaders and occasionally one of you slips through. There will be others like you but, like you, they will fail. We’re smart enough to know that fear is what you want, and we’re wise enough to refuse you it.
This may happen again – in fact, it seems to be happening all too frequently at the moment. But know this: each time it happens the victims will be mourned and you won’t. They didn’t deserve to die. You didn’t deserve to be alive in the first place. They will be remembered and you won’t.