And the question in most everyone’s mind is, can it happen in Manila ?
Of course it can.
Any group with enough political motivation, a modicum of resources and sufficient planning can pull off the horrific attacks which has so far claimed at least 125 lives. Another 327 people were wounded in the terrorist assault, including British, American and Australian citizens. Extremist gunmen are still believed to be in two luxury hotels, the Oberoi Trident and the Taj Hotel, as well as a nearby Jewish center, where they have taken a still undetermined number of hostages, many of them foreigners. A previously unknown group called Deccan Mujahideen has claimed responsibility for the outrage.
This is the Indian equivalent of the 9/11 attacks or the Madrid train bombings. Although there have been terrorist attacks in India which claimed an even greater number of lives, there has never been anything as brazen as this, striking at the country’s financial center.
Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh suggested the group behind the terror attacks was based outside the country, heightening tensions with neighboring Pakistan.
It is evident that the group which carried out these attacks, based outside the country, had come with single-minded determination to create havoc in the financial capital of the country.
India will never be the same after this.
And this may serve as a template for other terrorist attacks in other areas of the world, wherein a relatively small number of determined killers, estimated at a mere two dozen, could hold an entire country hostage. Our anti-terrorism forces, such as they are, should consider this as a wake-up call.