Saturday, July 15, 2017

Five hurt in acid attack in UK.

Emergency response to one of the acid attacks. Reuters via Sarah Cobbold. 

UK police have arrested two teenagers in London after horrific acid attacks wounded five people. Reuters. The attackers ambushed a man on his moped and stole him after splashing acid on him. Four others were attacked by the teens with one of them receiving "life changing" injuries. The victims mostly seem to be food couriers making deliveries on mopeds. Though acid attacks remain somewhat rare, the rate of attacks has increased recently. 

My Comment:
Horrifying news from the UK. Acid attacks are one of the more horrible ways to attack someone and the injuries they leave are indeed life changing. Assuming that all the victims survive, they will be scared and damaged for life. Chemical burns do not heal quickly and I fear that these men will have to live with being disfigured. If they live at all. After all, chemical burns leave you very vulnerable to infection... 

It's unclear what the motivation for this attack is. In the past acid attacks have been used by Muslims as a way to socially shame women who they consider to be unethical. Many times it is one step short of honor killings, with the same motivation: Restore "honor" to an embarrassed family. This obviously doesn't look like one of these cases. Indeed, all the victims appear to be men unknown to the attackers. I am guessing that whatever the motive, the various acid attacks in the Middle East and Asia by Muslims at the very least showed these attackers that the tactic works. 

It's also possible that this was a terrorist attack. If not it had the same effect. No matter what the motive is, splashing acid into random people's faces is horrifying and will cause quite a bit of fear. Still, even in the UK, you would think that if this was an actual terror attack they would have tried a different tactic. ISIS, for example, has used bombings and vehicle ramming/knife attacks to kill innocents. I haven't heard of them using acid, though I guess it is possible. 

The most likely cause though is simple crime. Though splashing acid on someone's face is a horrible way to rob them it is also effective. Nobody is going to fight while their skin is burning chemically. And it seems like these attackers stole the victims mopeds. Criminal gangs in London have used this tactic before as horrible as it is. 

It just goes to show  that the UK model of gun control isn't working. First, after the gun ban, the criminals moved to knives. Now that knives are controlled in the UK as well, the criminals have moved on to even worse tactics. Right now in the UK you can still buy acid in stores and nobody will question it. And if you are attacked by an acid wielding madman in the UK your only options for self defense are your fists and harsh language. Given that this is the UK we are talking about they will probably ban acid as well and the thugs will move onto something else...

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