Volgograd train station rocked by suicide bombing

Two days to the end of the Janus Project.

In the mean tivolgogradme something is happening in Russia.  This suicide bombing was followed by another in a trolley bus in Volgograd.  The unrest in Russia doesn’t seem to have made much impact on news here but it is evident that this level of ‘terrorist’ activity has been going on for some time as individual Russian states endeavour to seek their own future.


People milled in Volgograd.
The station buzzed with the rush of bustling crowds,
jostling commuters muscling their way to work,
hassled mothers with children in tow.  Children hushed.

Somebody killed in Volgograd.
A woman with belief in something that transcended life.
An ordinary woman.  Maybe grief betrayed her sense of right.
An ordinary face, ordinary clothes swaddling death beneath.

Blood was spilled in Volgograd.
Sixteen died when ordinariness exploded
and unleashed its angered holocaust of death.
In that instant time stopped, breath stopped in the wrath of suicide.

Something was stilled in Volgograd.
Thoughts.  Thoughts of desperation, of anger, of hate.  Thoughts of why
the waste of life, the ritual rationale of sacrifice
for a blinded cause, a beguiling hope, a misguided aspiration.


29th December 2013 – headline from the Guardian

Notes:  “Volgograd train station rocked by suicide bombing.”  Sixteen people were killed and another 50 injured after a suicide bombing at a railway station in the southern Russian city of Volgograd that highlighted the region’s security vulnerability just six weeks before the Winter Olympics.  Volgograd, formerly Stalingrad, is a railway hub on the route connecting European Russia with central Asia. It acts as a gateway to the Caucasus, and is 600 miles from Sochi, the Black Sea city where the Olympics are scheduled to start on 7 February.  The blast ripped through an area between the station entrance and metal frames that had been installed as a precaution against terror attacks.  An early statement by the Russian national anti-terrorist committee said the explosion was presumed to have been caused by a female suicide bomber, a young woman from the Caucasus, as in previous attacks in Russia over the past decade.  One report identified the perpetrator as a Dagestani woman by the name of Oksana Aslanova, widow of a militant.  However, later, news agencies reported that it was a man wearing a rucksack who was behind the attack, though he may not have been acting alone.