'They began shooting at anything that moved': Mumbai witness Assailants described as young men whose faces were not covered and "looked Indian". -Fri, Nov 28, 2008 AFP
PARIS, FRANCE - Shocked, their voices trembling, French witnesses gave harrowing accounts Friday of hiding under restaurant tables and running from explosions as India's financial hub Mumbai came under attack.
Johana, a 24-year-old tourist travelling with her cousin, was having dinner at the Leopold restaurant in Mumbai's Colaba tourist district when she spotted several young men with large rucksacks slung over their shoulders.
"They took weapons out of their sacks, lobbed three grenades and began shooting at anything that moved with their automatic weapons. There were several dead," Johana told AFP at a Paris airport soon after her arrival.
The tourist, who declined to give her full name, described the assailants as young men whose faces were not covered and "looked Indian".
"People ran out of the restaurant while others, like us, hid under the tables. Some found refuge in the kitchens and they didn't make it," she recounted, her voice shaking."
This brutal and senseless attack on innocent civilians - Indians and any other nationalities that happened to be in the areas targeted - got to feature on this blog as it is still raging on or lingering on almost 40+ hours after it first happened!
A coordinated attack against multiple targets. Why? What are these terrorists trying to prove? A moment of madness or really sending some serious and coherent message to the victims and the world that they deserved better treatment by something or someone or the world?
The most unthinkable thing is that NO demand were made, at least not reported up to this moment! Nobody, including those specialists in the military and defense industry. The people supposedly in the known knew nothing!! Or they were not forthcoming with the press and public!
There is no lesson to be learned for me on this tragedy but laments:
1. why do people killed another fellow human being mindlessly? why?;
2. can anyone justify any killing against innocent people to justify their holy cause for striking the enemies?;
3. can we continue to tolerate people who justify random and ruthless taking of innocent lives under 'religious struggle'? is my assertion that human being can be reasonable and as long as we engage in discussion and consultation peacefully with mutual respect we can always find a way to breach the gap still valid?
This is very distressing for me. My ideal has been shaken to the core. Once again!!
I will need to reflect and re-establish my personal belief that peaceful resolution of deep-rooted differences is attainable. The crazed terrorists are the minority. They should not be allowed to destroy the chance for peace, a lasting one, through their brutal act!
Keep the faith. My heart and condolence goes to the innocent killed and their families. And for those survivors traumatized, stay strong and move on. You have a lot to live for!