July 02, 2007

Two days ago, on Friday evening, I took a break from the wettest and most miserable Wimbledon in decades, and went to the theatre with two friends. Once at the West End –- as London’s Broadway is called –- a rather flustered Bobby informed us that theatre lights had been dimmed for the evening and no performances would take place. Two car bombs had been discovered, and were followed the next day with two suicide bombers ramming the Glasgow airport but causing no victims except for the driver, who burned like a candle while screaming that Allah was great.

Be that as it may, Allah’s greatness that is, I wish some of these madmen would address their grievances to those who are responsible for them. The Israelis, the neocons, George W Bush, that Cheney man, Tony Blair, Salman Rushdie, and so on. Why should poor Taki be deprived of a civilised night out at the theatre, and end up drunk at Wilton’s, however nice it is to get pissed on a rainy London night at one of the better of the capital’s restaurants (five hundred yards from the place the car bomb was discovered).

And it gets worse. I am pretty certain that this was an Iranian inspired attack. Some crazy Iranian doctor has been arrested—they think he was acting on his own over the Rushdie affair. Three days into his premiership, Gordon Brown is spouting all the usual clichés about vigilance and not giving in to terror. We have heard it all before. While he sits safely in Ten Downing Street protected by hundreds of Special Branch agents, we poor slobs cannot even go to the theatre. And Tony Blair, Bush’s poodle, is now free to pursue further glory while gallivanting around the world in pursuit of peace, whatever that means. Blair followed Bush blindly into Iraq, and now has been named by the Quartet as the man to bring peace among Muslims and the West. It’s like naming Albert Speer ambassador to Israel in 1948.

We have heard so often that Blair’s alliance with Bush made Tony a recruiting sergeant for al Qaeda and its affiliates in the UK. That may be true, but only in the sense that everything is a recruiting sergeant for al Qaeda’s case: the removal of the Taliban, the Balfour declaration of 1917, the birth of Israel in 1948, the end of the Muslim caliphate in 1924, and the way women dress in the West. The one thing that Blair will not do, hence his impending failure, is that he will not deal with those who are in the middle of the problem. Hamas, Hezbollah, Iran, Syria and the Taliban. Yet he sat down and talked with the IRA and Sinn Fein, and managed to get a peace process going.

One thing my grandfather taught me very long ago, when as Prime Minister of Greece he talked with the communist rebels in the mountains. Better to talk with your enemies than your friends. It is a long haul but it’s worth it. Sixty years of refusing to talk has made Israel and the United States the two most hated states in the world. Time to start gabbing.     


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