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A very real threat

  • Published at 06:49 pm March 26th, 2017
  • Last updated at 02:01 pm March 27th, 2017
A very real threat

Saturday’s suicide bomb attack in Sylhet speaks volumes of the current state of terrorism in Bangladesh, while also pointing to a worrying trend in how terrorists are planning their attacks.

We have mentioned this before but it bears repeating: When it comes to terrorism, we cannot afford to let our guard down or leave any stones unturned.

With this being the third in a series of suicide bombings in the country, it’s become evident that these militants are using more extreme methods in pursuit of their political agenda.

The Sylhet attack, which has left six dead and dozens injured, was also the first of its kind to target a crowd instead of government defense forces, and is further indicative of how militants are becoming increasingly emboldened.

The work our law enforcement agencies have conducted is commendable to that end, with many having lost their lives in the fight against terrorism. The nation owes these brave souls much.

But we must work together to ensure that attacks such as these are prevented to begin with.

This requires some hard questions to be asked: How have we let this trend of Islamic militancy and extremism to persist? Who are their leaders? How are they being funded? Do they have international connections?

That the terrorists have resorted to suicide bombings points to a trend of escalation on their part. But this specific tactic is especially worrying because the perpetrators require no exit plan. Unfortunately, we the citizens do, and must escape the increasingly frequent and extensive reach that Islamic militancy is imposing on our nation.

Though we trust the efficacy of our law enforcement agencies to control such attacks when they arise -- what we need is prevention.

For prevention, the government needs to understand the psychological and cultural factors that lead to so many people in our country -- both and women -- joining the causes of Islamic extremism.

Until then, we must consider the threat of terrorism a very real one indeed.