sábado, julio 23, 2005

Perdido en Londres

Fragmento de un texto de Ros Coward publicado el 23 de julio en
The Guardian

"Stockwell station is somewhere I go a lot. My family use it all the time too. It's not somewhere I particularly like; it's always a bit edgy. There was an armed bank robbery a few years ago and drug dealers hang around late at night. But edgy is different from what happened yesterday when heavily armed police chased a man on to the tube there and shot him dead in front of terrified passengers. According to witnesses there was blind panic and passengers emerged from the station crying and shaking. The local vet's, better known for its sensitive treatment of bereaved pet owners, was commandeered for witnesses of a suspected suicide bomber. Surreal was the word someone used and that's what London now feels like to me.


Accounts of the Oval incident describe three passengers struggling with a man with a rucksack while a woman standing next to them hugged a baby and sobbed. On Thursday, at the time of the incidents, I saw for myself streets full with parties of schoolchildren and tourists. Should politicians really be telling people like these to come into London to "enjoy themselves", knowing they are dealing with terrorists whose only concern appears to be the numbers of casualties they can cause? Closer to home, should I really encourage my daughter to travel on the tube as if everything is "normal"?

Perhaps taking decisions to continue as normal would be easier if the justifications for doing so were more palatable. But, as with 9/11, I feel conscripted to a bizarre war where I don't know what my enemy wants but I'm told it's my moral duty to defend western consumerism by defiantly riding the underground. Perhaps I would feel easier if political leaders were prepared to do the same. Perhaps if more than just Ken Livingstone were back in London using the tube and "enjoying this great city" the rest of us would feel reassured. In the meantime I view these as exceptional times and have just texted my daughter suggesting she walks home from school."