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St. Petersburg: The day after terror

Russian President Vladimir Putin has visited the Sennaya Ploschad station where yesterday’s terrorist attack occurred and has laid flowers, paying his respects to the victims.

All ready, the entire St. Petersburg Metro systems is back open and fully functional. As Alexander Mercouris writes,

“St. Petersburg is of course the city that defeated the Nazis after a terrible siege, and at a time when it is once more under attack its people will draw courage from that fact. Any idea terrorists might have that they can shake or intimidate such people through the indiscriminate killing of civilians by planting bombs in the metro merely shows how little they understand Russia, St. Petersburg or its people”

Russia has declared three days of mourning for the victims of the attack. All ready though, people are asking who may have been behind this attack?

Initial reports have surfaced indicating that a Russian citizen of Kyrgyz origin may have plotted and executed the attack. It is still not entirely certain if he acted alone.

Kyrgyzstan’s State Committee for National Security has pledged to work side by side with Russian security and emergency services in helping with the investigation.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told the press that Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump had a phone call during which the American President expressed his condolences to the Russian people and affirmed the necessity of working together to fight terrorism.

Donald Trump has emphasised the need for the United States to work with Russia against a common terrorist threat throughout his campaign and into his presidency. However, the responses of America’s traditional European allies as well as the anti-Trump mainstream media, had a very different kind of response to the attack.

Western mainstream media journalists were quick to invent conspiracy theories to explain the attack on Russian civilians, including women and children.

British state-owned broadcaster BBC was among the first to draw a rather strange link between the attacks and recent protests by ultra-nationalist agitator Alexei Navalny.

Not wanting to be out done, Rupert Murdoch owned Sky News chimed in with similar theories:

The overall response of western mainstream media has been both to minimise coverage of this major terrorist attack or to dismiss it with conspiratorial accusations of a ‘false flag’ incident. By contrast, RT never aired such theories in its comprehensive coverage of a smaller terrorist attack outside the UK Parliament, just weeks ago.

The dismissive attitude shown by the western mainstream media was quickly adopted by civic leaders in Europe’s major cities. Monuments like the Eiffel Tower, Brandenburg Gate, Big Ben and others are frequently illuminated with the colours of a nation’s flag who has recently been the victim of a terrorist attack.

No such displays were made in the aftermath of the St. Petersburg attack.

The staggering levels of hypocrisy when it comes to western cities paying tribute to Russian victims and western mainstream media offering anything remotely resembling journalistic fairness towards the situation are not surprising.

Russophobia is now endemic in elite western circles, although more and more ordinary people are failing to adopt this narrative.  

For Russians it is a matter of moving forward, although certain feelings of caution and fear will almost certainly linger for residents of St. Petersburg.

UPDATE: The official death toll has now risen to 14. 

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