No More Crusades
Today I was going to write another ‘normal’ blog post. I’d have talked about the weather, I’d have talked about Portugal, I’d probably have whinged about something…. again.
But today it’s becoming apparent that France is experiencing its own 9/11 and perspectives change when events like this crash into our comfortable little worlds.
So I find myself needing to put my thoughts down on ‘paper’ again, it matters.
Numerically the toll of death and injury from this latest atrocity is far smaller than 9/11 but it’s predictable that the psychological effects will be similar.
Fear first, followed by horror and not long afterwards, outrage.
Once again innocent people have suffered death injury and trauma at the hands of young men brainwashed into believing that they are ‘mujahideen’ fighting a religious war in the land of the ‘infidel’, brainwashed into believing their own deaths will guarantee a place in ‘heaven’, brainwashed into believing that their sole purpose in life is to fight and die for their ‘god’.
History repeats, centuries ago, in the Middle Ages, young men were brainwashed into believing that if they became ‘crusaders’ and fought a religious war in the land of the ‘scaracen’ that they too would be guaranteed a place in ‘heaven’, that their sole purpose in life was to fight and die for their ‘god’.
Many innocent people suffered death injury and trauma at the hands of these young men.
One thousand years have past and nothing has changed
Nothing has changed because those in power don’t want it to change.
In 1956 the American sociologist C. Wright Mills wrote a book called ‘The Power Elite’. In the book he shows how military, corporate and political leaders influence and control the opinions and actions of the masses. Call it brainwashing, indoctrination or manipulation, it doesn’t matter, what matters is that it’s been this way for millennia and it seems set to continue for as long as humanity can survive.
It will come as no surprise when, over the next few days, Hollande, Cameron and Obama start talking about a renewed ‘crusade’ against these fanatical terrorists, just as Bush and Blair talked about their ‘war on terror’ 14 years ago in the wake of 9/11. Are we to believe that these ‘leaders’ really think that the solution lies with more bombs and bullets? It didn’t work then and it won’t work now, and they know it full well.
To paraphrase Steve Earle, yet more poor boys will be sent off to fight a rich mans war and yet more innocent men women and children will die, yet more fear and horror will be inflicted on the world.
So today I’ll fly ‘Le Tricolore‘ aboard ‘Gleda’ in sympathy for those that have died and those that are left behind.
Je vous prie de bien vouloir accepter mes sincères condoléances.
Tomorrow I’ll carry on trying to live a life detached from the norms, away from manipulation by the ‘Power Elite’. All I can do is insulate myself from their influence, make my own judgements, form my own opinions, be a self-governing member of the human race.
But on days like today I feel ashamed I’m not doing more, hiding doesn’t change things, thinking doesn’t change things, it takes action to do that.
I’ll take consolation in the fact that I’m writing though, it’s action of sorts. The pen is mightier than the sword and all that.
The words written by my keyboard are nowhere near as mighty as a sword, they’re unlikely to inflict more than a pin prick, but at least they’ll do something.
Maybe my words will prick a conscience, maybe my words will prompt a thought, maybe my words will sap the power of the ‘Elite’ just a tiny bit.
I do hope so, if enough of us did it we could stop the crusades.