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September Today in Terrorism

September 2, 2018: Suicide bomber wounds children in Somalia

On September 2, 2018 an Al Shabaab suicide bomber blew himself up at a government office in Mogadishu killing 3 and wounding 14

MOGADISHU, SOMALIA – Terrorists often claim to be acting in the name of a ‘better cause’: so what happens when that cause comes with a horrific cost?

Devotion to a cause can be a good thing – a very good thing! Think of those who sacrifice time and money to helping the poor or the disadvantaged, all with a goal of making someone else’s life better. We need to recognise and salute these folks.

Once in a while we see an individual who truly goes above and beyond in the furtherance of a cause a Canadian I can think of no one more emblematic of this than Terry Fox. This cancer survivor – he lost his leg to the disease – started a run across CANADA (NB that is more than 9,300 km!) in 1980 and only stopped (after 5,373 km) when his cancer returned and eventually killed him. What an amazingly dedicated person.

Sign me up for his cause! (Photo, Ian Muttoo on Flickr, CC BY 2.0)

Then there are terrorists.

They have ‘causes‘ too, ones which they will kill – and sometimes die – for. While we may not agree with their tactics we have to acknowledge that they too are dedicated to something bigger than themselves.

The problem is that what they are fighting for seldom if ever leads to a better situation and often makes matters worse. Take today’s featured attack.

On this day in 2018

An Al Shabaab suicide bomber blew himself up at a government office in Mogadishu, killing three soldiers and wounding another 14 people. But some of the injured were not soldiers: they were children.

You see, the terrorist’s final act also led to the collapse of a nearby school. That is where the children were hurt.

We were in the middle of our usual work when the explosion happened. I hid under the table. There was a lot of gunfire at our gate… when I came out, I saw many people injured on the ground and others dead.

Eyewitness

Explain to me how injuring little children is a way to promote your ’cause’. Go on, I am waiting.

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By Phil Gurski

Phil Gurski is the President and CEO of Borealis Threat and Risk Consulting Ltd. and Director of the National Security programme at the University of Ottawa’s Professional Development Institute (PDI). Phil is a 32-year veteran of CSE and CSIS and the author of six books on terrorism.

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