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Thursday, July 14, 2005

The London Bombings

WARNING: Serious post follows

I've been watching the news coverage, almost obsessively. It's not that I am terribly morbid or anything. I think it's a need to know everything that has happened and everything they went through....to acknowledge their lives and deaths, to know every awful little detail...in some way helps to pay tribute to their tribulations and tragedy. So this big cosmic universe knows that they did not die and hurt alone. That we, half way around the world, felt it too on some level.

I know it seems strange. I guess part of it is also because on a smaller scale, I know some of what they felt. The victimization, fear, bewilderment and loss of control of a situation. It makes me reflect on my own traumatic little crisis, when I was held hostage by a convicted felon....some of you will remember, some of you will find this new information about me (and no I will not recount that tale, it's one that I prefer to leave in the past). I do still, now and then, find myself with residual effects of that incident. It seems the little things can bring back the panic and loss of control. I am very uncomfortable around men in green parkas (he was wearing one) and lord help you if you come up behind me and put your hands or arm near my neck.

In the end...you have to shake it off and move forward. While you take these things with you , and although they change you in some way...you must move forward and not allow it to 'own' you. I see that London is doing that and they are trying very hard to gain back some normalcy without fear. I hope that their strength does not faulter and I pray for everyone affected by this.

Right after this attack, extremist groups were on the net and posting comments along the lines of: "London is burning. The infidels are filled with fear." In response this website, http://www.werenotafraid.com/ , was created to show strength and defiance to these murderous, violent criminals. Visit it. Buy something if you can. Portions of the profits are going to the Red Cross London Bomb Relief Fund (or you can go directly to the Red Cross site if you want to help that way )

The appropriate saying for this time, I think, is: They can break our bodies but they can not break our spirit.

2 Comments:

Blogger Gen said...

I can sympathize with you, and I feel your pain. A few weeks ago, I was caught up in a scenario I had only seen in "Cops". What happened still scares me to this day. I'm always looking at people's faces, wondering if they recognize me as a witness. (I still won't go out after dark, not even to get something out of my car.)

It wasn't until a few days later that it hit me like a ton of bricks...people in Baghdad are looking over their shoulders all day, everyday. It's not a matter of wondering IF there's going to be gunfire, but WHEN. Yet they continue to grow as a nation, showing the terrorists that they are a force to be reckoned with.

Today, I was moved when I saw the unity of different nations during the moment of silence. It wasn't just the English, or the Americans, or the Iraqis. The terrorists have to know that we aren't going to be scared. They are not going to win, they WILL die in vain.

7/14/2005 09:24:00 PM  
Blogger soul searcher said...

It's not a win-lose thing with terrorists. When will people understand this? They are not playing a game of checkers. Most terrorist groups have clear and limited political objectives. Some want Westerners out of Saudi Arabia. Others want the foreign troops out of Iraq. Some want the British out of Northern Ireland. But until any of these respective goals are accomplished, terrorists will continue to strike. Perhaps even after these things are accomplished, they will find another political aim to pursue, much like the U.S. military, that has engaged in innumerable wars for centuries. Much like we think "the terrorists" will never win, "the terrorists" likewise think the U.S. (the Brits, etc) will never win. So we engage in an endless cycle of bombings and wars, arrests and reprisals. How about moving towards actual peace?

And has anyone ever thought that a large proportion of the Iraqi insurgency are actually Iraqis that want the U.S. and company to leave? How would we react if, say, the French invaded after the 2000 elections, charging that we were incapable of running an effective democracy and had weapons of mass destruction, deciding to occupy our land until the Florida recount was finished? Doesn't that sound ridiculous and wouldn't there be thousands of people lined up to fight it? Why don't we understand sovereignty when it comes from a point of view contrary to our interests (i.e. why can't many Americans see how Iraqis, even if they disliked Saddam Hussein, wouldn't want to be bombed back to the Stone Age to get rid of him, then subsequently be occupied by tens of thousands of foreign troops?).

7/14/2005 09:55:00 PM  

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