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london can take it

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One of the students wasn’t paying proper attention while I was delivering training today; he was checking the news online, and heard about the terrorist attacks in London. My immediate response, like those of security experts, was “it was coming, it was only a matter of time”.

As long as London, Madrid, New York, and other major cities are free cities, in free countries, it will not be possible to fully prevent such attacks. There is no wall around London, and there isn’t going to be. People are free to drive in and out, take the buses and trains, and walk around without hindrance. If the authorities use these bombings are an excuse to impose travel and movement restrictions on London, or further violations of civil liberties, the cost to London will be immense and not worth the price.

London can take it. Any strong society is resilient. Individuals are killed or injured, but the city and the society carries on. CNN are playing up the drama, asking interviewees “has London changed for good?” to general bemusement. As one interviewee, with blood on his face, said: “London is a dynamic city, it’s always changing”. Like a living organism, it recovers from damage and gets on with business.

If I still lived there, I would have condolences for those who died, best wishes for a speedy recovery of the injured, then a question: “when does Kings Cross station re-open?” If the Blitz of 1940 didn’t break London, do cowardly terrorists believe they can seriously dent it? No-one really understands what they hope to achieve by this, and religion is not an excuse.


Written by brian t

July 7, 2005 at 7:07 pm

Posted in philosophy

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