A photo circulating online in the wake of the Manchester attack has sparked controversy, and the British Royal Air Force has confirmed it's indeed a real pic, CNN reports. The image, which started proliferating on Thursday, shows what appears to be a bomb with a written message on it apparently meant for ISIS: "Love from Manchester," it reads in neat black marker, a small heart directly underneath. While some may have initially thought the image was fake news, the RAF confirmed to CNN in an email that it was "genuine," though CNN notes no one has said where or when the message was created, or whether that bomb was ever dropped in Iraq or Syria, where the RAF helps out with airstrikes.
"I'm sure they heard this loud and clear," writes Sarah Palin on Twitter. But not everyone is cheering the explosive message. "What does this achieve?" one commenter posted on Twitter, while in an op-ed in the Independent, Manchester native Harriet Williamson says she's "sickened" by the RAF response and that "killing and maiming people abroad" doesn't bring back those lost in her hometown. "No one with any compassion or humanity could take pleasure or satisfaction in seeing children in other countries with their arms and legs blown off, or parents with their little ones dead in their arms, white with dust from collapsed buildings," she writes. "It won't punish the man who committed the atrocity. It's not guaranteed even to punish those involved in ISIS." Her full column here.