This is a particularly futile question, but I can’t help asking it. I’m sure right now millions of others are asking the same question. Why? What on earth made you think it was a good idea to plough a lorry through a pedestrianised area and kill dozens of people? How does that help whatever cause you think you have? What conceivable god could be in your heart telling you to do that? What, if anything, is in your heart besides anger?
I don’t think I shall ever understand the things people do in the name of god. I once heard a story of a nun who shouted ‘God! Is! Love!’ at a child, beating him with a book on every syllable.
I don’t think I shall ever understand why people think they can enter paradise by killing others.
I don’t think I shall ever understand the excitement that runs through you as you plan your killing. Why don’t you see the blood, why don’t you feel the pain? Why don’t you hear the children?
You must be excited, I guess. You must be fuelled by adrenaline as you jump into that lorry in the hills, armed with your fierce intention, holding the steering-wheel like an AK47, driving the truck like a bomb. Your heart is a missile.
I don’t think I will ever understand.
Your purpose is steely as you head for the town. Do you think about the people who will die? Do you see them? Or are they just devils to you: devils in cafes and shops; devils with their devil families, devils on terraces drinking wine and enjoying the satanic evening sun? That must be it, I guess. You couldn’t do it otherwise.
We must all be devils to you. I am a little demon eating my muesli and watching the news: my children are succubi and my husband has cloven hooves. My friends are Lucifer and Mammon. We drink satanic wine and chat on the terrace.
Because you have divided us. You have divided us into good and evil; angels and demons. You yourself are on the side of the angels, and to prove it you must blow up a few devils from time to time. Else the Archangel Gabriel will get cross with you and throw you out of heaven. You must prove your loyalty; here, now.
You must prove your honour.
Here is your honour. On the bloody bodies. Here is your honour, written on the dead bodies of the children. here is your honour on the splattered streets and torn cafes, on the fear and chaos and mayhem.
Don’t speak to me of honour. Because I will never understand.
RIP the victims of Nice.