Whenever multiple explosions occur at the same time we are told that the operation "bore all the hallmarks of al-Qaida".
Alan Adamson asks a question that has also been on my mind:
One meme I still do not get is the one that appears regularly after some attack like the one in Amman, Jordan, today, where a number of more or less simultaneous explosions occur, wreaking terrible damage and enormous loss of life. Usually reports on the topic are full of assertions that this had to have been the work of a sophisticated organization. Why? What does it take to get two or three people to strap on explosive belts, load up a car with explosive material, and go to some places and set them all off around the same time? This seems to me a very simple project.
This seems right to me. Before suicide bombers, we used to try to to prevent bombings by making it difficult for the bomber to explode a bomb without risking his or her own life (for example, by ensuring that luggage was not loaded onto planes if the passenger did not board the same plane). I can see that it might be fairly tricky for bombers to to plant bombs in multiple locations and have them explode at around the same time without risking their own lives. But suicide bombing seems much simpler in terms of organisation. How "sophisticated" do you need to be to pack some cars or rucksacks with explosive and agree a time to detonate them?
The other meme that I don’t understand is the idea that suicide bombers are "cowards". I think they are psychopathic, evil, twisted, monstrous, brainwashed, sick and mad, in some combination. But I can’t see how it is cowardice deliberately to blow yourself up in the name of what you believe. (Eugene Volokh agrees).