Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Gerald Westminster

Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea: London 2OO5

The navel of the Universe Posted by Picasa
A blog is a blog, while a political column disguised as a cool, trendy blogspot.com diary is a total different animal. I would like blogs to keep their, so to speak, purity. But sometimes it might look callous or plain silly not to speak at all of what's going on in the world out there, around us. Famously, Louis XVI's entry for July 14th in his Journal was: "Rien". A lot has happened in London the other day. Besides I lived there, in the blissful RBK&C, for five happy years.
When I was a Londoner myself, the Provisional Irish Republican Army was still active, and even managed a rocket attack against Whitehall. Later on I lived in Jaffa, at the time bus-deflagrations became part of terror war tactics. More recently, I watched from my Grokholsky pereulok viewpoint the Dubrovka Theater massacre, the Beslan massacre and all the black, sad things that were happening in Chechnya. Tellingly, to deal with terror attacks has been part of the internal scene whenever I lived, for the past twenty years. Including, obviously, where I'm staying now, since everything happening here is, when not directly ETA-related, a kind of grief-work for the 11-M .
My dear London, the only place on Earth where an eccentric with a un-heard of hobby can find plenty of soul mates. The vibrant proof that cultural diversity not only can work but that indeed it mutually reinforces those different cultures. I prefer a sushi bar alongside a Mexican nachos joint and a Alsatian regional restaurant to a fusion Asiapacific choucroute. London is like that, a New York in Old Europe ( Thank the Lord!).
Both the etiological and symptomatic treatments of Islamist Terrorism will have to pursue. Not an easy task, and at times perceived as boring when one considers how difficult it is to focus the attention of a TV-addicted population for more than a fortnight.
But if there are anywhere balanced and efficient professionals, in and outside politics, that can pull it off, it will be the Brits. They live in London and they know what's at stake...

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