Friday, July 07, 2006


The policeman standing outside my local tube station this morning marked the first anniversary of the London transport bombings. No doubt at some point he’ll have the unenviable task of having to stop and search some ‘suspicious looking’ individual who happens to be carrying a Fitness First bag or something.

Now don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t expect the police to do anything other than put out an increased presence one year on from the event. Just imagine the situation if something did happen again and they’d not put extra eyes on the transport system. Then there’d be one hell of an uproar.

But the primary effect of this climate of paranoia is of course the loss of our liberties. Not to mention the life of Charles de Menezes last year (and correct me if I’m wrong but we’ve still not got to the bottom of that one have we?)

The bottom line is that there’s a huge cultural difference between western cultures and the middle eastern cultures. We have different values. And a small (yes, emphasis on small) number of misguided individuals take it all much too far. They’re deluded by the idea that they’re doing what their god wants (an idea with which – incidentally – I cannot begin to empathise with because I’m an atheist). Clearly: god or no god, there’s no excuse for their actions.

But the governments of the USA and the UK in particular are the ones largely responsible for this political and social mess. Their policies with respect to the middle east are terrible. And the right wing Neo-Christian US government (hey guess what - also deluded by the idea that they’re doing what their god wants) commits as many war crimes as any ‘rogue’ (oil harbouring) nation they care to pick on. Guantanamo bay anyone? Christ...

Oh sorry, I blasphemed there.

It’s the ideal breeding ground for more AK47-clutching madmen. The extremists hardly need any more fuel for their fantasies. Yet we’re still giving them countless ‘excuses’ to do what they want to do.

If only those with the intelligence to get together and sort out our differences were the same people with the drive and inclination to become leaders. It’s a rare combination.

This is hardly a new or rare viewpoint here in the UK. And a thousand bloggers have probably written much the same thing this morning. But the copper outside the tube this morning got me thinking about it so there you go. Rant over.

1 comment:

gridrunner said...

P.S. I wish I could write as well as this.