The attack and decapitation of a soldier in a London street by Jihadi terrorists was remarkable for its savagery and also for the contemptuous attitude of the two killers: it seems to have been a deliberately barbaric assault on a stranger targeted for his work, carried out with maximum barbarity and publicity, and with enjoyment. The arrogance, hubris and heartlessness of the men towards a fellow human being in the name of Allah was what was shocking - this happens in far distant places like Syria, and indeed in Boston recently, but not in Britain, until now.
I am reminded of the difficult years when Irish terrorists waged a deadly campaign on the British mainland as well as Northern Ireland, causing many deaths. It was callous too, remorseless and relentless, a time when no-one knew where the next bomb would be and if it could be prevented. Because Jihadists see murdering infidels as their path to salvation and because they have no fear of death or discovery, they are dangerous too. They will take risks and try to make their plot spectacular: life will not matter, and the vigilance of the security forces will be valued more than ever.
We do not know yet if the machete killing is part of a national campaign or was a one-off localised event, but we have known for some time that the Jihadist threat is real in Britain as well as elsewhere. While this is a sombre time for all of us, it is so particularly for the military colleagues of the young man who found himself in the wrong place and time so tragically, and for his friends and relatives. What is certain is that, once again, savage terrorism will not change our way of life, and we will not live in fear.
Claire Montanaro is a spiritual teacher, channel and blogger. Loves nature and wildlife. Author of Spiritual Wisdom.