Germany is reeling under savage attacks on its citizens in the past week. The latest incident to spread terror in the country is the Ansbach, Germany explosion. Last night, a 27-year-old man blew a bomb thereby killing himself and injuring 12 others. This happened after he was refused entry into the music festival taking place in the small southern German town of Ansbach. More than 2,500 people were evacuated after the explosion for their safety. The bomber had packed his bomb with screws and nails, which makes it seem more like a suicide bombing as opposed to a suicide attempt. This comes close on the heels of the shooting rampage in Munich and the machete attack in Wuerzberg. The state of Bavaria is horrified and on high alert after these incidents have taken place.
Why Target Ansbach?
The first question people are asking is “Where is Ansbach?” Ansbach is a small city in in German state of Bavaria. Ansbach is the administrative capital of the region of Middle Franconia. It is situated about 90 miles north of Munich and about 25 miles from Nuremberg. It is also home to an U.S. Army garrison town where members of the U.S. army, civilians, and contractors live. It has a population of roughly 42,000 people and is a peace-loving city on all counts. So, why target such a small city? Investigating agencies are still grappling with this question. One theory is that since the city was the venue for the music festival it was obvious that there would be crowds there. The single objective of a bomb attack is to kill and maim as many people as possible. This might be the reason why this Syrian asylum seeker chose this town. The bomber was denied entry into the music festival as he did not have a ticket.
A Lonely Guy
Not much is known about the bomber except that he was rejected for asylum a year ago but was allowed to stay in Germany because of the civil war situation in Syria. He has attempted suicide several times earlier and was known to be undergoing psychiatric treatment. Germany has traditionally been favorable towards asylum seekers, but the recent spate of attacks have left them angry and uncertain. With the issue of immigration coming to the forefront of Europe, now Germany too will have to do some soul searching regarding its immigration policies. Given the background of the bomber, it is not clear yet whether he wanted to end his own life only or if he was trying to kill others as well. Authorities are saying that the motive of the bomber has not yet been established. It is too early to call it a terrorist attack.
When Will It End?
One thing is sure. This latest attack will only harden the German people against the refugees entering their country especially those coming from the Middle East. Leaders in Germany are openly calling for a control system on outsiders to be put in place. The big cities like Munich, Berlin, and Hamburg have security arrangements, but small cities like Ansbach are very vulnerable to such lone-wolf attacks. Middle Eastern refugees are having a tough time adjusting to the different culture of European countries. Add to that poverty and frustration and you have a volatile mix. Young unemployed youth are getting sucked into this vicious cycle and taking up arms against their hosts or fellow asylum seekers. Right now, everybody is looking heavenward and asking, “When will this all end?”