Every time an attack happens, I feel the same cycle of emotions and internal conflicts.
And so I felt the same when the bomb went off in Manchester: My university city for three years and home of United, the football club I dearly love.
It’s a profound pain for the loss of innocents and a frustration that Islam is blamed for it.
It feels like a festering wound that gets re-opened on a regular basis so it never gets a chance to heal.
London’s parliament attack was only months ago and we all went through the full gamut of emotions and blame in the aftermath of that incident as well.
And yet this time, I’m fed up with the empty rhetoric we get from Western politicians and leaders.
They claim the terrorists will never win, and yet in the same breath, make contradictory and inflammatory foreign policy and further erode our civil liberties.
Partners in hypocrisy
Theresa May says they will never win nor change our way of life, and yet minutes later, elevates the security threat to code red, flooding the streets with guns and soldiers.
Her best friend and partner in hypocrisy, the US president calls terrorists “losers,” while he enjoys all the trappings of a full royal Saudi welcome.
If this is ever to be solved, Western politicians and the voters who put them in power need to recognise their critical role in this mess.
Ever since oil was discovered in the Middle East, Americans and British armies have developed relationships with the Al Saud family: Guardians of the Wahhabi doctrine.
I’m fed up with the empty rhetoric we get from Western politicians and leaders. They claim the terrorists will never win, and yet in the same breath, make contradictory and inflammatory foreign policy and further erode our civil liberties
Note that Wahhabism, a perverse version of Islam, directly inspired extremist groups like the IS and many other terrorists.
The US and the UK played significant roles in murderous regime changes in the Middle East, but did not stick around long enough to rebuild these leaderless states or adequately invest in them.
Our politicians have endorsed botched military interventions and wars in the region that have killed millions of innocent civilians, including hundreds of thousands of defenseless women and children.
Why they snap
I don’t think it’s surprising that some people who have emotional ties to this region snap from time to time, and when they do, are indoctrinated into becoming suicide bombers.
Fixing this mess will be difficult because it will require the reversal of nearly 100 years of Western foreign policy.
It would also require a fair and just solution to the crimes committed against the Palestinian people and it would require a fairer global distribution of oil which may lower the standards of living in the West.
It seems to me that unless all of these things are addressed, no one is safe from the constant threat of terrorism anytime and anywhere in the world.
Toffael Rashid is a global marketing professional.