Witnesses spoke of them running in terror- the very thing they had tried to do to others. I wonder what fear and consequence was suddenly pouring into their minds.
The police who shot the fleeing suspect with the bulky jacket may yet be revealed to have put five bullets into the brain of an innocent man- despite the too bulky coat on a warm day. He may have been fleeting in panic, wanted for jumping bail. My mate Dave never takes his jumper off below ninety. But diving down on a body you fear will explode; I can imagine why you would empty five shots into a person. I remember a charging bull dropping dead at my feet. I still emptied the rest magazine into him out of sheer reaction.
I suppose even the demented and twisted killer of a Patricia Cornwall novel is understandable. They're evil, but they're sick. A suicide bomber in Palestine or Iraq has been made evil and sick perhaps. Conditions are so bad that I can imagine a fertile seed bed for anger and resentment. Still evil, still wrong, but I can begin to imagine why.
But these are kids who grew up in Britain under the rule of law, if they're like the first lot of bombers. Their families live in the next street to us! They're good people- for pakis- and I guess that's one beginning of it all. The stigma of not belonging, and the prejudice that goes with it, begins to scarify the soil of the soul. It teaches resentment. It turns the mind too much inward for survival. It could happen to anyone. The deepest human longings for salvation, for meaning, for significance are corrupted by evil teachers. Festered in closed communities without the reality check of the wider world. Innocence and naivety, honest outrage, and a desire to make things better are moulded and perverted by men who should know better......
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