If it's true the London terrorist attacks were carried out by suicide bombers, as appears to be the case at this point, we are reminded of the inevitability of a never-ending war on terrorism and the plain fact that not every terrorist can be thwarted.
That's not to say the world's law enforcement and military forces should reduce or relax their efforts. If anything, they should be redoubled. But the world never has and never will be safe from people who believe killing innocent people somehow advances their cause - especially madmen eager to die in the process.
Investigators in Great Britain say they believe at least four of the bombers in the July 7 attack died in the blasts. A fifth has been arrested. There has been no real motive for the murder of more than 50 people.
The assumption, however, is that they were the work of al-Qaida. Like the 9/11 attacks on New York and Washington then, they were simply part of an ongoing war against the rest of the world, a particularly pointless and cowardly war that tallies ordinary commuters, shoppers and their children as victims.
Since Sept. 11, 2001, terrorists have struck worldwide almost every day in one way or another. We hear only of the most deadly attacks - in India, Israel, Indonesia (202 dead in October 2002), Nigeria, Pakistan, Philippines (186 dead in February 2004), Algeria, Turkey and Spain (201 dead in March 2004).
There's no count of the terrorist attacks that have been foiled, although it's probably safe to say that happens almost every day somewhere in the world as well.
What terrorists fail to realize is that they change no one's mind, even if they had a comprehensible message to promote. They have not spread fear, but a resolve to carry on despite the monsters among us.
They have spread only hate - a worldwide hatred of violence, deluded martyrdom and random suffering.
Just as there will always be terrorists, it's also true that terrorism can never win anything.