Ten years ago today, I published a post on my old blog entitled Carry On London, as a reflection after the bombings earlier in the day.
I make no apologies for repeating it today.
Tuesday, I went to the funeral of a friend. Alex died young at 48. Life is cruel. But even the funeral was not a sad affair! Alex wouldn’t have wanted it so and stated it probably many times before she died!
Wednesday, I was in Trafalgar Square, when my fair and beloved city, London, was announced as the winner of the 2012 Olympic Games. Life can be so sweet.
But then we have the bombings of today!
Thousands of times, I’ve travelled through the tunnels under London. Many times, I’ve done the stretch between Kings Cross and Russell Square, where most of the casualties occurred. Occassionally, I’ve used the two parts of the Circle Line, where the other two bombs went off.
Am I bitter? Angry? Sad? Vindictive?
Sad yes! As why would anybody want to do such a thing! How would I feel if one of my sons did that? I would know I had failed. How would I feel if one of my sons had got caught in the blasts. I don’t know! But thankfully they didn’t.
So it has to be sadness at the moment. Vindictiveness only follows the old eye for an eye maxim, which means that we all go blind!
But perhaps, the greatest thing we can do is just carry on, remembering those that died and vowing to be more vigilant so that it won’t happen again.
Fay would have done that. She worked for my father and during the Second World War, the shy girl from North London, worked as a conductor on the buses. One day, the bus she should have been on, was hit directly by a German bomb. Everybody died! She just remembered the tragedy, I suspect she cried long and hard, and then she carried on.
A few crackpots, who take the good name of Islam in vain, should never be able to bring London to its knees, when the evil Hitler and the Luftwaffe failed.
A last point for Bush and all those who think that the death penalty is a deterrent in these sort of cases. I’ll ignore the fact that the London atrocities may well have been suicide bombers, which are usually pretty difficult to execute. But as I am someone who has no belief in any religious being at all, I do believe that we should do all we can to preserve reasonable life here, as there is nothing more to come. So if we ever execute anybody, then we are losing our own humanity and descending below their level.
Carry on London.
A lot has happened to me since that fateful day of the 7th July, 2005.
My wife of nearly forty years and our youngest son, both died of cancer. I then had a stroke, which left me unable to drive. So I’ve moved back to London and almost ironically, I now live close to the route of the number 30 bus, one of which was destroyed with the loss of thirteen lives in the bombings.
But London has looked after me, as only one of the world’s great cities can.
And London has carried on, just as Fay believed you should.
Over the years, I’ve met people in all walks of life that deal with terrorism and crime in general. So I like to think I have a good insight into it.
The United States will claim it hasn’t had any terrorist attacks since 9/11, but isn’t the dreadful attack on the congregation of the church in Charleston headlined in this BBC article as Charleston church shooting: Nine die in South Carolina ‘hate crime’, nothing more than a similar attack to the one on the innocent sunbathers in Tunisia.
The links between the two crimes are the twisted motivations of the perpetrators and the easy availability of guns, that can fire large numbers of bullets.
One of the reasons, we have not had a deadly gun attack in this country, since the Dunblane and Hungerford massacres, is that it is just too difficult to get a deadly weapon like a Kalashnikov in this country. I don’t think we’ve even had an incident in recent years involving such a gun, where perhaps gangs of drug dealers are settling an argument.
But are we doing enough to keep these deadly weapons out of the UK?
As an engineer with extensive knowledge of modern manufacturing techniques, I believe that it is now possible to create a workable machine gun, that was mainly created on one of the new industrial 3-D printers, with perhaps a few small metal parts smuggled through border controls. I should also say that I know of a manufacturer, who posts and receives specialist stainless steel parts through the post from all over the world.
After all, this report on the BBC describes how nutters in Texas have created a gun that fires using a 3-D printer.
I believe it won’t be long before someone creates a set of plastic parts, which when put around the working parts of an assault rifle create a gun that can be fired by any suicidal terrorist.
There is no defence against such a weapon getting onto the streets through this method.
I’m pretty sure that someone is working on doing it. Probably in the United States, where it seems that owning an assault rifle is something that many want to do. But then adding sense to the gun laws of the United States, is as difficult as making a serious alcoholic or heavy smoker see sense.
For the second time in my life terrorism has got personal with my memories.
Two weeks after I stayed in the Taj Mahal Hotel in Mumbai, it was attacked.
It must be nearly twenty years ago, that C and myself, stayed in Sousse and had a wonderful holiday.
But, it is nothing to all of those directly affected, whose lives will be changed forever by the pointless actions of the terrorists.
My heart goes out to everyone who has suffered loss!
When will it all end?
I sometimes think, that the time has come to send in the troops to cleanse the world of the scourge that is Islamic State, Boko Harum and all of the others, who just like killing people and destroying things and the lives of others for fun!
These groups are no more Muslim than I am!
But we would reap the whirlwind, as things would just get worse!
I passed through Republic and took these photos in the square, that I visited soon after the atrocities a few weeks ago.
I haven’t changed my stance, that there was nothing that could excuse the murder of the staff of Charlie Hebdo.
Like my father, I am a great believer in free speech and agree totally with Voltaire.
I do not agree with what you have to say, but I’ll defend to the death your right to say it.
Unfortunately criticism is now seen in many countries and organisations as severe disloyalty and could even suffer the ultimate punishment,
There is nothing else to say!
According to this report on the BBC, the Pakistan government is ending its suspension of the death penalty.
He also announced an end to the moratorium on the death penalty for terrorism cases, which correspondents say is a move aimed at countering a view held by many Pakistanis that many terror suspects end up evading justice.
No wonder the Taliban just gets worse and worse.
I have got so fed up with all the problems in the Middle East and Pakistan, I now rarely use any shop or business that is owned by people from the area, who are obviously Muslims.
As the Qataris seem to be one of the funders of Islamic State, I also steer clear of anything they own if I can.
I’m beginning to feel very sorry for the average hard-working Muslims, who will feel the backlash of the nihilists in the Middle East.
I must say, I’m glad to see the old price going South, as it’s hurting some of the most odious people in the World. But sadly they’ll just have to not buy the sixth Bentley or Lamborghini.
I believe that Islamic State are possibly the worst organisation I’ve seen in my lifetime. Even such as Pol Pot in Cambodia and North Korea now, are nowhere near them on a scale of evil. They are in some ways more extreme and violent than Hitler and the Nazis at their worst.
But unlike Hitler, who had virtually no supporters in this country, there are quite a few in the UK, who think that Islamic State have got the right idea.
So by voting to attack Islamic State in Iraq, have we made ourselves a target for these crackpots and religious nutters?
After all, it is really ourselves and France, of the countries against Islamic State, who have significant Muslim populations.
My worry though, is not what terrorists might do, but the reaction of the UK’s population, if another attack like those of July 7th 2005 were to happen.
This is the headline to a large piece in the Sunday’s Times, describing how a white female convert to Islam is tweeting offensively from land controlled by the Islamic State.
Surely, many of those who have gone to support the cruel and extremely violent regime in the Middle East would be how those that are best described as several bricks short of a full load.
Are we building enough secure mental hospitals?
This report on the BBC about the Islamic State threat to the UK worries me. Here’s the first bit.
Islamic State militants could grow strong enough to target people on the streets of Britain unless action is taken, David Cameron has warned.
The PM, writing in the Sunday Telegraph, said a “humanitarian response” to IS was not enough and a “firm security response” was needed.
It comes as Church leaders expressed concern that the UK had no “coherent” approach to tackling Islamic extremism.
By saying they are a threat so strongly, David Cameron is actually encouraging those disaffected young men, who want their five minutes of fame to do something that we’ll all regret.
We must find a way to channel this aggression that some young Muslim men feel into more worthwhile areas.
In the nineteen seventies and eighties, there was a lot of trouble in areas like Bristol, Brixton and Toxteth. I wonder how many of those, who might have thought about rioting are now pillars of society?
The solution will not be a simple one. But I can’t help feeling that better schools and transport infrastructure are two areas to start, as this gives us more of the better educated we need and allows them to travel to the jobs that are available.
We should also open up opportunities for Muslim women to become full members of society, whether the men like it or not. In fact you could argue that intelligent Muslim young women are one of the problems, as they are rejecting these idiot men and effectively giving them more reason to join the Islamic State.
Clamping down hard, as the Israelis have shown in Gaza, will just make matters worse.