Friday, July 08, 2005

London calling

Its a bit fucked up, because NZ is so close, psychologically and historically, if not physically, to the UK, in fact it was only 60 years ago that we became a legally distinct entity. If I can remember correctly, the Statute of Westminster was adopted in NZ in 1947.
London is the place we all go, on our "Big OE". We all start off there, get crappy flats in Shepards Bush and Camden, and take trips through Europe on weekends. Its so much a part of our identity that we feel attacked. I'll bet that every person in this country either knows or knows of someone in London. Without trying I can think of 6. It would be 7, but for the grace of the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra my beloved cousin is in Wellington.
Mr Blair handed it very well. Not that I am a huge Blair fan, the whole Iraq war thing caused me to lose a healthy amount of respect for him, but in my mind I was comparing him to GW after September 11 2001, and the glaring distinction to me is that Mr Blair seemed genuinely upset. I saw a photo of him this morning standing on the steps of the Gleneagles Hotel, and he looked like a man in pain. Theres a certain posture that a grieving man has, where they look smaller than they actually are, like the stuffing has been kicked out of them a bit. He looked like that. From my interpretation of GW on September 11th he had been told "look upset, something bad has happened". Mr Blair held himself together with grace and composure and then after attending to business at Downing St, went back to the G8 summit, as if to say Fuck you buddy, you can't stop us. After September 11th, the whole country stopped moving, planes were grounded, and the country shut down. Today, Londoners were encouraged to get back to work, to get on a bus or walk, to keep on with their lives.
Already, London wins. Even bombing the underground can't stop them.
Thats the thing with terrorism. If you let them stop you, then they win. If you believe the fear, if you let the terror get to you, then they win.
Terrorism is a means of warfare that strikes at your strongest survival instinct: Fear. If you deny them that, they got nothing.

Disclaimer: this blog is written by a middle class private school white girl who has never been on the recieving end of anything remotely terrorist. Still, its my blog, so get fucked.