[Air-l] London...the internet accounts

Paula pmg at gmx.co.uk
Thu Jul 7 10:00:52 PDT 2005

I'm in London about half a mile from the Aldgate bomb and less than 5
miles from all of the blasts. Think my nerves must have got rather
blunted having gone through the pretty incessant bombing in the IRA
campaign of the 70s and 80s - the Bishopsgate bomb in the early 90s
shook my building and shattered glass on the other side of road, and the
tremor shook the external stairwell - which my son was going down at the
time and had to grab for a railing. I knew people who were in the
Admiral Duncan when that was bombed by neo-fascists (I [wo]manned the
helpline that evening), and I live less than a mile from the nail-bomb
the neo-fascists let off in Brick Lane a couple of years ago. When I
described the sound of the Bishopsgate bombing to my mother, she laughed
and pointed out that she knew perfectly well what a bomb destroying a
building sounded like having grown up during the WWII blitzkreig on
London and Bristol and spent half the nights of her childhood in a bomb

Bombings are pretty much a way of life in London - and I'm slightly
surprised by the intensity of the response to this one. Maybe because of
the level of disruption - the IRA and the neo-fascists tended to go for
single buildings so the disruption was minimised. But also I think
there's a bit of a shift from the "plucky blitz" approach Londoners'
normally take, which may be related to an expectation of instantaneous
communication but I think is also influenced by American responses to
terrorist attacks. In the 70s, it would never have occurred to me to
start ringing round friends (nor did it today) cos they'd all be out in
the daytime anyway and, actually, the statistical chances of being
caught in a bomb blast are pretty small. Far more likely to be in a
traffic accident on a normal day! Remember, the networks are only down
because ppl are flooding them with unnecessary calls so the emergency
services have had to lock out personal calls.

Actually, apart from the transport and communications disruption, this
has been relatively considerate. Better than nail bombs in crowded pubs
if you ask me. I'm starting to feel guilty for being so matter-of-fact,
but, unless I'm going crazy, the Brits have always been matter-of-fact
about bombing campaigns for as long  as I remember? I can't imagine why
Blair is banging on about threats to civilisation and preserving our way
of life blah blah. What ridiculous rhetoric! Did Bush's speechwriters
come up with that one for him? It's yet another bombing campaign, not
the end of the bloody Western World. Jeez!

I hasten to add that of course I care about the grief to the victims,
friends and family of this particular attack and I care very much about
the victims of violence everywhere in the world.  Let's have a bit of
stiff-upper-lip, for heaven's sake! And bear in mind that this is
chickenshit compared to what people are dealing with in Iraq and


Monica Murero wrote:

> ...BBC has created an online environment where people who are
> "blocked" in the areas of explosions are sending hundreds of e-mails,
> pictures, but also mms, sms and calls to tell what's going on - and
> ask what's going on -  I was told by a friend who works at BBC. I am
> reading on the Internet those stories from  central
> London...http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/talking_point/4659237.stm
> I have no TV  here at home...the Internet is my only window on the
> world .....what a world....
> ...I was in London just few days ago....
> Monica
> ************************************************************
> Prof.  Monica Murero, PhD
> Director,  E-Life International Institute
> Professor in Communication and Media Integration
> University of Florence MICC - Center of Excellence
> for Media Integration and Communication
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