This time, France was supposed to have been better prepared.
Despite a state of emergency following two recent terror attacks, authorities in France are facing criticism that they should have done more to protect one of the softest of soft targets: A pedestrian zone in Nice where 30,000 people — families and fun-seekers among them — turned out for Bastille Day celebrations that were turned to tragedy by a truck driver's deadly rampage.
More than 120 police officers and soldiers were deployed at the festivities, according to the Interior Ministry. But critics are saying that wasn't enough to protect the several miles-long stretch of the city's seaside Promenade des Anglais that had been closed to traffic.
During Thursday's fireworks display, the attacker was able to drive a 19-ton truck through police controls and barrel 2 kilometers (1.2 miles) through the crowd, killing 84 people, before being shot death by police.
Previous attacks in Paris, Brussels and beyond exposed France's and Europe's vulnerability to extremist attacks by affiliates and supporters of radical groups like Islamic State and al-Qaida.
Thursday's killing spree now underlined the difficulties of guarding against attacks when an everyday vehicle can be turned into a devastating weapon. "
Now is the time for mourning, but I sense that anger is growing," Christian Estrosi, the conservative president of the greater Nice region, told France Info radio.
Estrosi, a member of the opposition Republicans, said he had requested that the police presence be reinforced in Nice ahead of the fireworks display but was told there was no need. In an open letter published on the Nice
Matin newspaper's website, he denounced France's current Socialist leadership as "incapable."
Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said high security had been assured in the region, pointing to the Cannes Film Festival in May and the Nice Carnival in February.
Speaking to reporters Saturday, Cazeneuve said police vehicles were blocking the entrance to the promenade but the truck "forced its way through by mounting the sidewalk."GO READ THE WHOLE THING.
Streets shut down with barricades and heavy Police presence:
Just another of the minor inconveniences we put up with for the pleasure of living with all the Moderate Muslims who are our friends and neighbors.