Thursday, July 07, 2005

My heart goes out to Londoners right now, a terrible day.

This is not the way anyone wants to start the day, as many know this morning, if they have their radios or TVs on, London has just been attacked with multiple bombings in its busy subway and transportation network. The London underground subway system and some of London's double decker buses have been hit with a coordinated attack using explosive devices of some kind. Of course the belief is terrorism and though it's too early to know for sure this is probably what the outcome will be. The awful reality of the instability of our times continues to creep itself into our consciousness in violent disturbing shocks such this and I pray somehow it can all just end. The sad reality is it likely won't anytime soon.

911's horrible surreal unfolding, which I will never be able to erase from my mind, as I watched it live just as Jeff did, has scarred the human syche and it doesn't help that the current administration keeps beating us over the head with it every chance they get. That event lodged in our minds only to further the escalation with things such as this creeping up on us. It's sadly ironic to be touching upon this 2 days after our trip to Detroit which resulted in Jeff's editorial post on Homeland security issues, here we are in the middle of another event that could potentially lead to more fear and possibly more escalation from all sides. I hope not but look at what has already happened and where we are now.

I move through each day with a positive outlook on many things but I dread mornings like this where I turn on the news and something awful is unfolding. I dread this kind of thing escalating further but ultimately it seems to be a phantom boogyman that simply will always be there until humanity completely evolves itself past this tribal warlike nature. Asymmetrical warfare is the new modern battlefield, our enemies are not nations, have no borders, and can move about freely with anonymity. They attack without warning on their own time schedule with precise simplicity. They go after soft targets, the people, the economic infrastructures, they know where to hurt us most. It's like fighting shadows.

Sure we have high technology to aid us in a fair fight but these guys have zero interest in fighting fair, they know they'd lose. We may have an extremely well trained military but what we lack is the enemy's fanatical devotion to religious extremism and a complete lack of any concern for personal wellbeing, that is the suicidal impulse. You don't deal with this kind of enemy with a sledgehammer, you need to be clever about preventing their spreading, stopping their organizations ranks from growing. This is an enemy I sadly feel the west simply doesn't fully understand and because of this we don't have the best approach to dealing with them. These people have little hope and such psychological states lead to out-of-the-box thinking, can ultimately justify suicide bombings and the murder of innocent people in their mindset's methodology. Of course that's quite insane but this is how they can come to such an extreme conclusion. Poverty, hopelessness, and a sense of the west encroaching upon their traditions can have that effect on a people. I'm certainly not justifying their actions but we need to understand why they do and stop the impulse for these people to even enter such a dark place.

Much of these realities and concerns are what motivates my drive to create stories dealing with the extremes of human drama and experience, my need to cathardicly address it. All one can do is live without fear and move forward. Yes we're in a VERY dangerous world right now but as Jeff pointed out we should NEVER give up our freedoms in exchange for the illusion of securities that can't be fully realized as promised by politicians capitalizing on understandable fears of a worried populace looking for someone to keep a metaphorical nightlight on to scare the boogymen away. Vigilance and thoroughness are no question desperately needed in order to prevent these terrible people from succeeding with these kind of attacks but our freedom should not vanish in the face of this. I don't trivialize the danger that these extremists pose but I certainly don't embrace a creeping police state, here, England, or anywhere in the world in order to "prevent" these attacks. This isn't the solution, we need to understand why this is happening and stop fanning the flames the are already spreading wildy. I continue to hope for a future where this isn't a looming specter over hanging over us all. Again my heart goes out to the victims and their families in London today. Not a good morning.

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