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The Infant Samuel by Joshua Reynolds, 1776, Musée Fabre, Montpellier (Photo credit: wikiart.org)


I would like to express my condolences to the people of Britain. On 22 May 2017, only two months after the 22 March Westminster  bridge attack, the Manchester Arena was targeted. Twenty-two (22) persons were killed, including 8-year-old Saffie Rose Roussos, and 53, perhaps more, were wounded. The victims were attending a performance by American singer Ariana Grande.

The killer has been identified as 22-year-old Salman Abedi who was born to Libyan parents in Manchester, England, on 31 January 1994. French and British authorities have confirmed that Salman Abedi travelled to Syria and was radicalized.


Islamophobia as Provocation

Once again, it would be my opinion that the attacker, 22-year-old Salman Abedi, who has been described as a “regular kid,” may have acted in response to the current wave of Islamophobia, in the United States especially. The President’s professed Islamophobia may be incitement to murder.

On Monday, 29 May 2017, “two men were stabbed to death on an Oregon train trying to stop an anti-Muslim rant.”


Saudi Arabia and President Trump

President Trump was in Europe last week, but he first visited Saudi Arabia. After his visit, the Saudis suggested that President Trump’s Islamophobia was a ploy aimed at attracting votes. He, Donald Trump, would not allow would-be killers to enter the United States.

This was a callous response to the European Migrant Crisis[1] and, contrary to the Saudis’ view, Mr Trump “made good” on his campaign promises. On 27 January 2017, a newly-inaugurated President Donald J. Trump issued Executive Order 13769 restricting the entry of Syrian refugees[2] into the United States and imposing a travel-ban affecting seven countries of the Middle East: Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen. (See Executive Order 13769, Wikipedia.)

In late March, the Canadian government passed an anti-Islamophobia motion in an attempt to protect its Muslim citizens. I would never have suspected the government of my country would have to resort to a forceful measure to discourage discrimination.


President Trump is a dangerous man.

The Istanbul Attack

I should also note that the New Year’s eve attack on Istanbul has revealed a reëmergence of a fear, and probably dislike, of the United States in Turkey.

Turkey is an officially secular country, but at birth, citizens of Turkey are registered as Muslims. (See Religion in Turkey, Wikipedia). Istanbul, the former Constantinople, was the capital of the Ottoman Empire, which was defeated during World War I.

Since the 15 July 2016 coup d’état, harshly repressed by Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, there has been a shift away from the West in Turkey. On 4 January 2017, New York Times journalist Tim Arango reported that: “instead of unifying to confront terrorism, Turkish society is fracturing further with each attack. The West, symbolized by the United States, is the perennial bogeyman.”  

Turkey is a member of NATO, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, l’Organisation du Traité de l’Atlantique Nord, l’OTAN (see Member States of NATO).


I will conclude by quoting writer, journalist and commentator Fareed Zakaria. On 4 May 2017,  Mr Zakaria wrote that “Trump is turning other countries against the United States.”


President Trump is now attacking Germany, and Adam Taylor of the Washington Post reports that  “even Angela Merkel’s political rivals are on her side against Trump.” Of course!  President Trump is attacking Germany, all of Germany!


In fact, Europe is folding back. On 28 May, German Chancellor Angela Merkel spoke in no uncertain terms when she stated that the continent, we, “really must take our fate into our own hands.”


Once again, I offer my sincere condolences to the family and friends of the Manchester bombing.


Love to everyone 


[1] William Lacy Swing, Head of the International Organization of Migration, reports that people smugglers make $35 bln a year on the Migrant Crisis.


[2] Refugees from the Middle East are Syrians, Iraqis and Afghans. Most are Muslims, but Canada has also welcomed Christians, Armenians and Assyrians  (Syriacs) and Yazidis, whose faith combines a number of beliefs.  The persecution of Yazidis by ISIL was genocidal.

Tchaikovsky – Hymn of the Cherubim


Saffie Rose Roussos

© Micheline Walker
1st June 2017