How can any young man decide to kill himself, as happened in the recent atrocity in Manchester, England, in an attempt to slaughter as many other young and innocent people as possible? The bomber does not seem to have been insane. Nor did he lack education. What motivated him, his associates who were allegedly planning to commit similar atrocities and supporters of the Islamic State militant group, which claimed responsibility?

One suggestion has been that the atrocity was driven by a desire for revenge for Western attacks on Islamic extremist forces in Iraq and Syria in which women and children were killed. But for most people, whether religious or not, indiscriminate vengeance is never justifiable. This atrocity targeted the most vulnerable.

Was the massacre a delayed response to British policies in the Middle East and particularly British participation in the Iraq War, which had provoked hatred of Britain and the West? Even if some British policies were unwise, no rational person can argue that policy mistakes are a justification for the mass murder of innocents.