I quickly and instinctively drew this flag in response to the 13 November 2015 Paris incidents, with the following note:
Regardless the culprit(s) and his or their affiliation(s).
I reacted in much the same way as an immediate response to last summer’s Nice incident – and then some.
But you know, we can’t go on like that every time a police officer is killed in every country we know of, much as we sympathise, seeing as how police killings very much belong to the order of the day – and for a number of reasons.
Confident that police officers gave their lives elsewhere, too, yesterday, I regret that they did, but we need to let go of this faux and effortless concern, unless we feel obliged to award the perps the attention they seek, and continue to fuel the conflict, of course.
Please forgive my failure to comment on Turkey’s president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s continued rise to power, as it’s all been according to plan, and I honestly wouldn’t dream of expecting a different outcome.
There’s no denying that I’m tempted to continue regarding North Korea ruler Kim Jong-un with the amusement with which I have viewed him up until recently, but owe it to myself to remind me that even Adolf Hitler, despite his evil nature, was considered quite the clown.
I hate to say “I hate to say I told you so, but I told you so”, which is why I’m very pleased to say that for once my predictions weren’t altogether accurate.
Avid readers may remember how I, in a late December 2016 blog post, appointed the Middle East the new East–West battlefield. Turned out that I was indeed right, but what I failed to see, was the escalation of the Southeast Asian conflict now materialising in North Korea’s armament and the U.S. Navy’s race towards the Korean peninsula’s shores.
Make no mistake about it: We may think the Middle East resembled hell on earth, but I fear we haven’t seen the half of it. With Southeast Asian conflicts on the rise, on top of Russia’s aggressive stance on neighbouring countries, such as Ukraine, it’s safe to say that it’s been some time since we were this close to a potential world war 3, hard as it is to imagine.
Of course it’s all to do with both Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin’s lack of success in domestic affairs and their need to show international force, coupled with fellow madman Kim Jong-un’s megalomaniacal delusions.
While I hate to admit failing to see this development in advance, there’s no denying it’s currently playing out right under our noses, and I, for one, am scared shitless.
But it doesn’t stop there: With Brexit underway, and Spain and the UK fighting over Gibraltar, Europe’s stability is at risk, too.
The situation may be diffused, if parties involved are willing to take a step back. At present, however, that doesn’t seem very likely.
And then, of course, there’s Turkey’s Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.
At the risk of repeating myself, I think I’d better repeat myself:
Be afraid. Be very afraid.
Top illustration: U.S. President Donald J. Trump and Russia’s President Vladimir Putin. Blogger’s drawing.
In light of Europe’s two recentmost St. + St. (St. Petersburg and Stockholm) terrorist attacks, you have to ask whether or not Uzbekistan – whence the two alleged perps allegedly originated – indeed is the place to be if you want to make a name for yourself as a Muslim extremist.
I think we have established that it sure as hell isn’t Raqqa.
At any rate we need to acknowledge that terrorist attacks have become a very ordinary element in urban everyday life – whereas cowards, such as myself, go hide in the countryside.
If the Bush administration succeeded in convincing some of Saddam Hussein’s alleged weapons of mass destruction, we shouldn’t be surprised if the Trump administration manages to convince them of the Shayrat airbase’s part in Syria’s alleged chemical warfare – true or not.
I’m not saying this in defence of Bashar al-Assad. The man is criminal, through and through. Only problem is: With all probablitiy, so is Donald J. Trump.
Caution, is all I’m saying. Let’s not forget Iraq just yet (or Libya, for that matter), and for God’s sake, let us not forget about Russia.
An old phrase – you know whose – immediately springs to mind:
On a somewhat more positive note it should be added that western measures were long overdue. Let’s just hope the Shayrat airbase wasn’t manned by Russian troops – or that Mother Russia is looking kindly on an attack on her close Middle East ally.
Que sera sera
What ever will be will be
We’re gonna kill Argentines
Que sera sera
My British fellow tourists sang on a Spanish beach in the summer of 1982.
The current situation, as we see it unfold, confirms our deepest fears as we saw the early signs of European disintegration last summer, also proving that the EU is and was the most successful peace project ever seen.
Photo: EU flags flying at half-mast in front of the Brussel Berlaymont building on 22 Match 2016, as if in anticipation of events to come. Photo from the European Commission.