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...a sweatshop of moxie

Monday, July 25, 2005

When is Our Protest March, London?

(Welcome Tim Worstall and Clive Davis readers!)

5,000 courageous and sickened Egyptians and foreigners marched to protest the recent terrorist attacks in the posh resort of Sharm-el-Sheik on Saturday.

A lady protester chimed in to say, "terrorists have no eyes, who kill innocent civilians everywhere."


Exactly like the awful Madrid underground bombings of March 11th, this protest march took place the very next day. The very next day, mind you.

So London, where is our protest march against terrorism in our country?

Where are the thousands and thousands of protesters who marched against the Iraq War now? Why is it that in the land which spawned Speaker's Corner and the Oxford Union, we had a 2 minute silence, and...that's it? Silence. How telling.

(Oh, that's right, the Queen went to visit the injured in hospital. Oh well done!)

Please don't tell me it's not our style. Please don't tell me we're too phlegmatic, and it's business as usual for us. We survived the Blitz, the spirit of Dunkirk, stiff upper-lip, yadda yadda blather.

This photo below is of the towering Prince of Asturias leading the march, front and centre, alongisde his then Prime Minister and his eldest sister, Infanta Doña Elena.

Remember it?

His statement is a bold one, because try as I might, I could never imagine my future king, the Prince of Wales, in a similar show of concern and solidarity for his country. The Palace would probably say it's not correct for royalty to be so partisan and vocal. Someone alert the Royal Institute of British Architects!

It is more important for the Royal Family to be apolitical, than to ever embroil themselves in public marches against the slaughter of their own subjects. This is why King Juan Carlos and his family are relevant, respected and deeply bound to their country, and our Royal Family are a bunch of sad wet irrelevant noodles.

And therein lies our true national tragedy.

It is more important to keep up appearances and stay "above things" than to draw a line across the sand against terrorism.

The question is begged -- who are we afraid we will insult? Terrorists?

Is this why the BBC refused to call the 7/7 cell members "terrorists" and instead insisted on using "bombers" only?


Shame, shame on a conquered nation.


  • Considering the tone of this post is (rightly) upset, not to mention outraged, it is good, however, to step back and look at one's words through another prism.

    After installing my latest blog-gadget, what I consider a handy tool for my international readers -- an Babelfish translator located in the sidebar -- I am reminded that Babelfishing anything into another language usually yields unintended comedy.

    Take this section of my post, now in Spanish:

    Sobrevivimos los Bombardeos, el alcohol de Dunkirk, superior-labio tieso, blather del yadda del yadda.

    El alcohol de Dunkirk! El Superior-labio tieso. Blather del yadda del yadda.


    That hit the spot.


    By Blogger vbspurs, at Mon Jul 25, 04:45:00 am GMT-4  

  • Would the blog author like to state exactly what she believes will be achieved by a bunch of people, however well-connected they may be, walking together along a road in London?

    The only thing which would be produced, as far as I can see, apart from a certain amount of self-publicity for the participants, is further damage to the wallets of drivers who are held up by the asinine posturing of a bunch of do-gooders!

    I did not take part in the two-minutes silence for the victims of the terrorist bombings on 7/7, as I stated within my own blog posting http://mikesbooksandthinks.myblogsite.com/blog/_archives/2005/7/14/1026734.html.

    I definitely do not believe that any useful purpose whatsoever would be achieved by yet another touchy-feely exercise in futility with lots of so-called 'committed' pillocks wandering down some street in London, all calling out "We shall overcome", or some other, equally fatuous slogan!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Mon Jul 25, 05:34:00 am GMT-4  

  • Oh shush, you SoFla-resident strumpet.

    The sight of office-blocks full of people emerging onto the streets to stand together for the 2 mins silence was evidence enough for me that we are not "a nation conquered" or whatever bollocks you wrote.

    By Blogger Martin, at Mon Jul 25, 11:33:00 am GMT-4  

  • First, *LOL* at your name, Mike.

    Not that I am laughing at you, of course, but at the fact that I have an Irish chum from a forum I post to, who bears the exact same name.

    With a little sleuthing by going to your website, I was able to confirm, he is not you, and you are not he. Whew. :)

    Second, it's curious you know -- I was never much for marches. The only time I considered marching was one which some of my cousins were tied to, the famed and ultimately failed, Countryside Alliance march.

    Other than that, I couldn't conceive of one march I would participate in, since the very thought of marches, protest rallies, and the like, gives me the willies.

    But I think that had there been a London protest march immediately following the terror attacks, and were I still living in London, I would've been there.

    I dareasay if you think this specific event would be termed "touchie-feelie", that you probably would've smirked at photos of the late Queen Mother and old King George, standing amidst the rubble in the East End, chatting, hugging, and often crying with the survivors.

    Better for them to have stayed in their Palace. I'm sure the people would've felt they were with them anyway.


    By Blogger vbspurs, at Mon Jul 25, 01:23:00 pm GMT-4  

  • Oh shush, you SoFla-resident strumpet.


    The sight of office-blocks full of people emerging onto the streets to stand together for the 2 mins silence was evidence enough for me that we are not "a nation conquered" or whatever bollocks you wrote.

    Perhaps. I concede it was very moving for its simplicity and pathos.

    However, we did the same for the 9/11 attacks. It seemed to me when your own are being attacked, you could go that extra step.

    And also, Martin, I've always noticed an awful double-standard when it comes to protest marches.

    It's okay when wars are being protested, when the President of the US is being attacked, when they have rallies against invasions.

    Then London is jumping with protesters.

    But not on 7/8?

    That's not right. That's hypocritical and wrong. That's even morally bankrupt.

    The line of course, is a play on "shame shame on a conquered king".

    Those were the dying words of Henry II, after he had been betrayed by his own son, Richard the Lionheart who fought alongside the French to defeat his father.

    In other words, he was conquered...he was betrayed by his own.


    By Blogger vbspurs, at Mon Jul 25, 01:38:00 pm GMT-4  

  • Ahh, Victoria,

    Protesting against a bomb threat from a bunch of rag-heads; and the King and Queen demonstrating that they too would not be moved from London during the blitz. Different set of circumstances all together!

    The first proposed protest march presumably would attempt to show how 'solid' the marchers were in their opposition to, well, what? Being blown apart? Possibly yes!

    Stating the defiance of the threats from a fanatical bunch of anarchistic, nihilistic fools, who have been bluffed into the belief that they are carrying out the wishes of a somewhat amorphous deity? Again, possibly,; but the ones who are being spoken to are not listening!

    The visit of the Sovereign and his Consort to a bomb-site in the East End of London; a simple act of courtesy and of respect to the people who had lost so much by Enemy action!

    The actions of the many, such as my eldest son and his girl-friend, in simply returning to work in Central London the very next day, and for all the weekdays after the first attack, are worth a million marches, because the very fact that the lifeblood of London is still pulsing is proof that the bombers will never win, not while there are British people who state, "Bought a bike, so I can get to work despite the lack of transport, because I won't let the bastards win!"

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Mon Jul 25, 03:09:00 pm GMT-4  

  • As much as I appreciate your reply, I do not tolerate the word "raghead" any where near me.

    Please never use that again in this blog.

    Finally, we seem to disagree about the import and necessity of protest marches, and even their meaning.

    I don't think that will change.


    By Blogger vbspurs, at Mon Jul 25, 03:16:00 pm GMT-4  

  • Victoria,
    Do you suppose that a protest march is going to help weed out terrorists? I think it would be better to have local WATCH programs to make sure that such kind of things are nipped in the bud.

    Protest marches usually serve as a fodder for politicians who encourage them. Well this is my personal opinion.

    By Blogger abhijit, at Mon Jul 25, 11:57:00 pm GMT-4  

  • I am at lose for words here. Least I can say is that I am with you. I share your spirit.

    By Blogger S A J Shirazi, at Tue Jul 26, 01:29:00 am GMT-4  

  • I'm not sure how you got from my cri de coeur that protest marches would weed out the terrorists, Abhijit, unless of course you meant that's what we should be concentrating on, rather than poxy little marches.

    Whilst I understand what you are saying, to this day, I can't grasp why people think that staging a protest march against terrorism is an either/or act.

    As if doing so somehow would prevent us from doing everything else, like forming "watch committees" as you suggest.

    And whilst politicians are not strangers to inciting mayhem, in Britain our PM isn't about to call for a protest march, or use said protest as justification for propping himself up politically.

    That's just not in our culture as much as in, say, France.


    By Blogger vbspurs, at Tue Jul 26, 03:18:00 am GMT-4  

  • Thank you, Shirazi!


    By Blogger vbspurs, at Tue Jul 26, 03:19:00 am GMT-4  

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