A reader writes:

Today’s atrocity will remind people everywhere what we are up against. Past revolutionary groups killed hostages, planted bombs and committed all manner of violent mayhem to try and destabilize the societies they hated. But Islamic fundamentalist terrorists have been different since they announced themselves on the world stage decades ago. They also take hostages and plant bombs. But they bring to their work a suicidal commitment and a depravity Westerners simply cannot fathom. Every time there is a horror like this we have to learn it all over again. We have to think “oh, right…I forgot…they are monsters among us.”

The significance of today is that people like this, monsters like this, will never stop and will use any tool that comes to hand. For many this will mean “conventional” attacks with low body counts. For others it will mean designing spectacular events that may take years to come to fruition. So our choice is not simply to come terms with terrorism as a cost of doing business. X number of bombs and deaths a year is a normal part of modern life that only unmanly hysterics bother to get upset about. This is something we have never actually experienced in the civilized world.

Also of interest today is the story regarding the friend of Tsarnaev shot by the FBI. It looks likely that in addition to the bombing they slit the throat of some Jewish kids on another 9/11 anniversary. Monsters.