Monday 5 December 2016

The deadly desire for belonging

Published 24/07/2016 | 02:30

The Nice attack took place on Bastille Day on the Promenade des Anglais in Nice (AP)
The Nice attack took place on Bastille Day on the Promenade des Anglais in Nice (AP)

Sir - Like the majority of people I was shocked by the atrocity that happened in Nice just over a week ago. How could someone drive a 19 tonne truck through a crowded promenade intent on killing as many people as possible, children included? Surely these couldn't be the actions of a sane individual.

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In his article Fergal Keane (Sunday Independent, July 17) offers his insights into why this man, who I believe doesn't deserve to have his name mentioned, carried out the cowardly act that he did. He postulates that Salafism - Salafis are fundamentalists who believe in a return to the original ways of Islam - is "a perverse gift for angry, alienated, confused and sometimes mentally disturbed young men".

From reports emerging, this man seems to fit this profile. Apparently he was a loner and wife-beater. The perpetrator of the Orlando shootings in which 49 people were killed in a gay nightclub, also in the name of Isil, fitted this profile too. He was a closet homosexual who used gay dating apps and frequented gay bars. The theme of isolation can also be seen in this individual.

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