As promised earlier, there's more news stemming from the four explosions that killed 40 or more and injured hundreds this morning in London. Some reports suggest remote detonators, although remote detonation of underground bombs is increasingly rare; underground facilities (like subways) prohibit or at the very least limit the ability of cellular signals to successfully transmit. And as most terrorists know, police monitor the underground signals for precisely this reason, so they can keep track of ("tap") the underground chatter between people, though it's not your conversation with your Aunt Edna in which they're interested. In either case, as many news outlets report it's likely these devices were remotely detonated, what they really (and should be) indicating is they were devices implemented by timer.
The myriad questions surrounding this morning's bombings, for me, were whether the perpetrators thereof attempting to disrupt the G8 Summit, hit London post-Olympic announcement, or both. Of course, there is always the possibility that this attack was randomly chosen; but we all know, as there are no coincidences, that this was not a random choice. Clearly, the G8 and the Olympic announcement -- as a bonus -- gave the London bombers an international spotlight. What inspired me to relief that London (or Paris, or Sydney, or another city) was chosen in New York's place was perhaps the same impetus that wound up killing the New York West Side Stadium deal -- New York doesn't want to inherit the problems, the security hassles and the dangers of an international staging event like the Olympics. Whether it's domestic malcontents (Atlanta, Oklahoma City) or those located in underground caves and lairs, hiding like cockroaches, halfway across the world the result is the same: we don't want any more 9/11s.
It's very possible this attitude might be considered, by some, to be my attempt at cowering from the possibility of another 9/11 or an attack similar to this morning's in London. In part, that's true: however, it's not fear; if it were, I wouldn't be boarding a subway sometime within the next hour to go downtown. If it were fear, I would avoid visiting City buildings, as I am this afternoon. If it were fear, I wouldn't be living in this City, period.
What it is, and how I see this whole situation, is that there are not yet implemented ways of severely limiting these types of attacks. There's little, if anything, that can be done to destroy an enemy who is willing to detonate itself in order to injure its target. If you need examples, visit Israel, or review your history about the Vietnam War. Any time an enemy is willing to take his own life to possibly take yours, the game has changed. And this "war" is akin to any suicide missions, whether it is dubbed kamikazes, mujahadeen or intifada.
One day a good number of these attacks will be even more rare than they are now; technology and proficiency will insure same. However, the notion that these things are happening -- whether down the street, in a neighboring state or across the world -- are increasingly hard to ignore, if one so chooses to do so, simply because these problems are getting worse, not better. Take a trip on the New York City subway and count the number of police officers you encounter between the stairwells upon entering and leaving the station. Odds are good, unless you are observant, that you've missed one or two. We, like our European brethren, are playing catch-up; the only difference is that the IRA has forced the UK to be more caught up than has its North American sibling.
There is, and will be, more to the story from this morning's attack; there will be rhetoric, there will be protests, there will be "experts" angling for camera time, there will be men sporting bowties, sitting in libraries behind large oak desks, purportedly trying to give us a better picture of why today's attack occurred. The real reason it happened, and will continue to happen, is we exist. Our happiness is their misfortune, our satisfaction is their cause de celebre, our progress is their anger, and our ignorance to their complaints, interests and demands will be their motivation. As long as we continue to endure their attacks, we will be forced to do so.
And if you don't believe it, spend a week in Israel and visit a hospital ward filled with children who have been injured by Palestinian bombs. If my explanation of today's attack is insufficient, perhaps one or more of theirs will not be.
More to come, yet again.