The Yorkshire Post says: A silence that speaks volumes - Solidarity in face of terrorism

LIKE the rest of the country, Yorkshire will fall silent at 2.30pm today in solidarity with the people of Manchester '“ and all the victims of last year's terrorist attack at a pop concert by Ariana Grande.

The emergency services helping people near Manchester Arena following the terrorist attack in May last year. (PA).

A simple show of support, it will also send out a powerful message that this country will never surrender to acts of terrorists perpetuated by those jihadists, like suicide bomber Salman Abedi, whose warped views are incompatible with multicultural Britain and 
its values.

After all, last year’s terrorist attacks – and, of course, the countless plots that the police and security services have successfully foiled – only served to strengthen the determination of Britons to celebrate and cherish their freedom and, in doing so, stand up to terrorism and the tiny minority who harbour murderous intentions.

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It’s why Yorkshire’s solidarity with Manchester is as strong as ever. This was not just an attack on the North-West city, it was 
an attack on humanity, because most of those present were young concert-goers, many from this region, who were so full of innocence as the day of their dreams turned into the worst nightmare imaginable.

It’s why Yorkshire’s respect for the emergency services and NHS remains absolute. It’s sobering to think that many more people would have been killed, or suffered life-changing injuries, in last year’s atrocities if it wasn’t for all those professionals who ran towards dangers as others fled the carnage.

It’s why Yorkshire supports calls for more support to be made available to victims of such outrages. Though many of the physical injuries have healed, or are healing thanks to medical advances, all those present at Manchester Arena on the fateful night of May 22, 
2017, will have to carry the mental scars for the rest of their lives.

These, and many more, are issues that Theresa May will reflect upon as she, and Prince William, travel to Manchester to represent the whole country in today’s acts of civic remembrance which, in a poignant irony of timing, is also on the fifth anniversary of the soldier Lee Rigby being murdered by a jihadist on the streets 
of London.

Yet, while Mrs May is preoccupied with Brexit, the first duty of all Prime Ministers is national security and she needs to ensure that not only do the police and intelligence services have the necessary resources, but that everything possible is being done in communities to reduce radicalisation and encourage greater integration between people of all faiths.

In many respects, this is the new front line in the war on terror as Western nations confront a new generation of home-grown terrorists who have been influenced by wars in the Middle East, and by radical clerics preaching messages of hatred on the internet, who might not previously have come to the attention of the police.

For, while the Manchester Arena blast represented the worst of mankind, it also inspired the best of humanity, and the nation’s resolve – as strong and stoic as ever – must now be reinforced by similar resolution on the part
of the country’s leaders if the 22 people who were murdered are not to have died in vain.