Share this story
Close X
Switch to Desktop Site

Minor news item in an evening roundup

Young passer-by voluntarily carries bomb in satchel, to a dumping site where shortly afterward it explodes, leaving a large crater Did it seem interminable, that brief walk to where the deadly concentration of other men's hate could, without harm, expend itself? Did it seem an eternity and lonely beyond telling of with the pace held steady under the hammering heart and the telltale sweat, as it broke out, threatening to turn slippery the hand's grip? For a moment, just a moment think of the great charges across fields of battle! The famous, the venerated: the portrayed-in-paintings and sung-about-in-verse. Think of those mounted generals and their staffs watching (out of range) from picturesque knolls as the signal was given for the ceremony of carnage classically to begin. Once (remember?) there were even young boy pipers sent out ahead! And all those gloriously emblazoned banners to be borne forward, until the bearers themselves were felled in causes time and again glossed with a mockery of godliness that still -- still -- in this world of ours seeks to assume guises for crusades so deceiving that even a bomb, secreted in a satchel, becomes the signatured agent for this deity or that . . . as the strapping of an explosive to his own body guarantees, for the devout terrorist, instant entry into a heaven all ringing with praises for his sacrificial act. . . . Suddenly, tonight, it's this item that has pierced through all the other News: a young man -- in Ireland -- identified by neither name nor allegiance to a side simply doing what he did. And walking away.

Follow Stories Like This
Get the Monitor stories you care about delivered to your inbox.