It’s been too long since I wrote anything in this column. It seems, now, like a lifetime since Live8. By the middle of last week, we also learned that London was to host the 2012 Olympics. Sitting on the tube on Thursday morning, I’ll bet a lot of us were feeling rather proud of what the world had seen of London of the last few days.Thursday rapidly turned into every London commuter’s worst nightmare. I was one of the fortunate ones; the knock on effect of the tunnel collapse at Gerrards Cross meant that I wasn’t following my regular Circle Line journey from Baker Street to Monument – instead I was trying to Central Line from Ruislip to Bank. My own inconvenience was as nothing to what was suffered by some 700 families.
I found the weekend very depressing – a mixture of anger and sadness. But London bounces back quickly. The people who perpetrated the attacks are evil, twisted individuals. But the truth is that London is a glorious melting pot of peoples and cultures. People from many backgrounds who make London the wonderful, loud. colourful vibrant city that it is. The tube was packed this morning, and the open-topped buses full of tourists are passing the window of my office again.
The attacks on ordinary people going about their daily lives were obscene. But they (whoever ‘they’ are – terrorism that is so cowardly it doesn’t identify itself) will not intimidate us. We live in a fantastic city in a fantastic country. We value our freedom and our diversity. They will never take that away from us (though many have tried).
They are wasting their time.