Friday, July 08, 2005

London: To Those Who Mourn

In the book, The Great Reckoning: How the World Will Change in the Depression of the 1990s, James Davidson and Lord William Rees-Mogg captured the mood of the moment when they analysed 'violence as a catalyst and consequence of change'. They quoted Thomas Schelling in 'Arms and Influence' thus:

One of the lamentable principles of human productivity is that it is easier to destroy than to create. A house that takes several man-years to build can be destroyed in an hour by any young delinquent who has the price of a box of matches....

The power to hurt - to destroy things that somebody treasures, to inflict pain and grief - is a kind of bargaining power, not easy to use but used often. In the underworld it is the basis for blackmail, extortion, and kidnapping, in the commercial world, for boycotts, strikes, and lockouts ... it underlies the humane as well as the corporal punishments that society uses to deter crime and delinquency ... It is often the basis for discipline, civilian and military: and gods use it to exact obedience.

World opinion may yet be divided on how to settle the clashes of interest that have been the source of conflict through the ages, but of major concern to everyone should be the shifting battleground. From New York City - Bali - Nairobi - Beslan - Madrid - Istanbul - Baghdad, rules no longer exist to this conflict. The enemy is faceless. The weapon is everything. The target is everyone. The battle field is everywhere.

And so, on Thursday 7 July 2005, Terror came to London! An unsuspecting city had seemingly dropped her guards, and the sprawling transport system was hit by terror bombs. Caught up in the carnage were innocent Londoners going about their normal routines.

The same people who, only the day before, had fought hard and succeeded in a bid to create a better World through the Olympics in the years to come.

The same people who, only a few days before, had come out in droves to support the efforts of the Live 8 to force the hands of the G8 into making the world a better place for everybody, by making poverty history.

The same people who have time and again marched, and marched, through their streets, to tell their leaders that there are other ways to handle issues like Iraq. These same people are slaughtered in the shifting battleground, in a conflict that hath no rules of engagement.

What has happened to our World? WWIII, is this the nature? How did we come to this? Whatever it is going on, the world as we know it, has certainly come to an end.

Not in my Name.

No comments: