When you attack innocent people with intent to kill on foreign soil, it is an act of war.
Même à Paris, même à Tripoli.
A really old friend genuinely asked me last week, why do you care so much?
[about the fact that NATO (lead by the french) flattened Tripoli using air strikes and gun ships from the Med in 2001, in an act of war that saw the most amount of bombs dropped in the shortest space of time onto a civilian area, ever.]
Answer, because I spent 3 of the best weeks of my life in that beautiful country. We hung out each night when it had cooled down on top of flat rooves with mint tea and shisha pipes and foxing my Libyan hosts with the best card trick ever; playing football in the heat with a bunch of ace kids behind a market; eating as a guest in people’s homes and visiting a university, hospital, and special school; exploring the roman ruins at Leptis Magna; and in the last week, drinking date rum moonshine with the Egyptian kitchen staff in their secret beach hut. All at a youth conference in 1998, where 300 delegates from around the world all made friends.
I was 22.
I fell in love with a french guy on that beach and moved to Paris for a year straight after my trip. That is why it feels personal when you have to sit at home watching a beautiful capital city going up in smoke – anyone of those people I met could be dead.
That once-beautiful and thriving country is now a ruin and a cowboy town, with refugees risking their lives in boats to escape….via/to France… …to a squalid refugee camp in Calais that has been nicked-named the jungle… where french police fired rubber bullets 3 nights running last week (no, you didn’t miss it – it wasn’t on the news) in an attack that has been seen by many as collective punishment.
I have been hesitantly wanting to write about this this week, and considering the merits of translating an angle that feels ‘personal’ as, for one of my oldest pals, hearing that experience really made a difference to him understanding how I feel.
So anyways, last night at 3am whilst driving me home, the word Paris pops up on the radio and my adorable boss says, shit, haven’t you heard? There are a LOT of people dead in Paris.
Her brother has a house there, he could be there right now.
And two of my french cousins live there.
We’ve both lived there.
We’re both going home to get online.
So I watched BBC news in total horror until daft o’clock.
Thinking if I message now at 4am and don’t hear back, it will feel worse….
….and woke up very late today not instantly recalling why I felt so awful.
Oh yes, I have to check if my cousins who live in central Paris are alive.
C’est spécial, quoi?
Is that one step closer to understanding this concept of ‘personal’?
Is it normal my brain wanders into wondering if these suicide bombers have had members of their family blown up? Or was it a crazy extremist ‘religious’ motivated reaction to the state of our planet? It doesn’t feel normal, it feels disgusting for your mind to consider any of this.
Will war being waged by a prick like Blair and his international blood-thirsty cronies on false presences be tolerated in far off lands until enough of us have evolved to take it so personally we are prepared to do something about it?
EVERYONE is someone’s son or daughter, brother, sister or cousin.
That is precisely what we have in common all over our planet.
Love for your family and for your home.
That, and this SICK system of arms manufacturing, trading, periodic military attacks and a bullshit mainstream media that is designed never to expose heart of the problem: i.e Capitalism itself and the rotten Establishment who keep it going.
As long as our Earth is seen as a market place of resources where the highest bidder wins and pricks in suits can decide to press the seek and destroy button as it suits them then carve up the spoils under the guise of slick advertising, then innocent people will be killed, maimed and bereaved.
Lives rendered meaningless.
Life rendered meaningless.
It’s fucking personal.
The day after the Paris.