Skip to content
CityLab
Justice

Germany's Week of Terror

What next, after four violent attacks in seven days?
"Why?" asks a placard laid among tributes outside Munich Olympia shopping mall.
"Why?" asks a placard laid among tributes outside Munich Olympia shopping mall.Arnd Wiegmann/Reuters

Germany is, understandably, reeling. Within a single week, the country has now experienced four massacres or attempted massacres, leaving a death toll of at least 13 (including three attackers) and many injuries.

In the United States, a wave of public violence like this would leave citizens deeply upset and shaken. In a country with such normally low levels of violent crime as Germany, the reaction is one of even greater disbelief and soul-searching. How could such violence occur in a country with such strict gun control? And what, if anything, can the country do to ensure such attacks never happen again?