Eric Young: Terrorism an evil escalation

Opinion 24/04/2019

This morning we hear the Sri Lankan defence minister, in a statement to his nation's parliament, saying it is now his government's belief that the Easter Sunday bombings were in retaliation for the attacks on two Christchurch mosques.

Retaliation, revenge, call it what you like, it's an evil escalation

We'll see your 50 Muslim souls, and raise you more than 300 Christians in return.

It's always in someone's despicable interests to see the worst in such things. A holy war in miniature, and I wonder if it's a line too easily drawn. 

Our Government is not yet convinced on the attacks being payback.

A statement from Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern's office saying only that her Government has not yet seen any intelligence upon which such an assessment might be based.

That's not a dismissal. It's simply recognition for the second time in a few days, that the country she leads is not Sri Lanka, and that if there was any such intelligence, it would be unlikely to come to her.

There are also those who would say the timeline doesn't work. Christchurch - a word now with such resonance - was a little over five weeks ago.

The first warnings of attacks in Sri Lanka came just a couple of weeks after that, and made no mention of New Zealand, or a city in another country.

Security experts tell us an attack of this magnitude would be many months in the planning.

But if you look for the worst interpretation, sometimes you will find it despite the best of evidence to the contrary.

Was this a revenge attack? Perhaps. Was it inspired by Christchurch?  Maybe. 

But the why of it is not as important as the reality. 

Another death toll too hideous to contemplate. Another nation in mourning.

And another time when what happens, is somehow not as significant as what happens next. 

Eric Young is co-hosting The AM Show.