July 7, 2005
Suicide bombers detonate four bombs — three on underground trains and one on a double-decker bus — killing 56 (including the 4 terrorists) and injuring over 700
The bombs, transported in backpacks, were organic peroxide based, highly explosive compounds that are more difficult to detect than nitrogen-based bombs. Organic peroxide is less stable and thus susceptible to accidental detonation. Because of this it is sometimes referred to as the “Mother of Satan.”
The attackers had prepared a video explaining their motivations, stating “Your democratically-elected governments continuously perpetuate atrocities against my people all over the world. And your support of them makes you directly responsible, just as I am directly responsible for protecting and avenging my Muslim brothers and sisters. Until we feel security you will be our targets and until you stop the bombing, gassing, imprisonment and torture of my people we will not stop this fight.”
The bombers were referred to by Home Secretary Charles Clarke as being “cleanskins,” a term for those who have not been under investigation by authorities before their attacks. The attacks brought the country to the highest security level, with suspicious packages being remotely detonated and police snipers following those suspected to be affiliated with al-Qaeda. Police were also given orders to shoot to kill if a person appeared to be carrying a bomb and refused to surrender after being approached by authorities.
As with all terrorist attacks, various conspiracy theories were brought forward, including a “documentary” entitled “7/7 Ripple Effect” which was quickly debunked by the British television show “The Conspiracy Files.” It was also noted within The Conspiracy Files’ episode that the documentary’s creator had previously claimed on his website that he was the Messiah, and The Force had telepathically instructed George Lucas to write the script for Star Wars.
In 2009 a permanent memorial to the victims of the attacks was unveiled by Prince Charles, and the opening ceremony of the 2012 Olympics Games in London included a minute of silence in honor of the victims.