Friday, November 21, 2003

Kadir Gecesi

Friday. Tonight is the 'night of Power' in the Islamic calendar, the night when the Koran was revealed by Gabriel to Mohammed. It is a time when it is believed that a single prayer has the effect of a thousand, any single act of charity has greater strength, any act of contrition cleanses the soul. In the light of this, it makes yesterday's events even sadder. When I lived in Turkey, I always liked Ramazan, and not just for the delicious bread that's made then. Then was a quiet sense of celebration every evening, and a feeling of everyone coming home to be part of the family - that kind of sensation you get at christmas time, but extended for most of a month.
My wife phoned round most of her friends and family after the explosions. They were all OK, but two had lucky escapes. One girl actually works in the HSBC building on the first floor, facing the front. She was attending her mother's funeral yesterday, and so wasn't there- fortunately for her. Many of the most seriously injured and some of the dead worked on that floor. Another woman, sister to one of Nur's friends, was walking by the same building, and got slightly injured by flying glass. Again fortunately, she didn't require hospitalisation.
What has pissed me off this morning is the reaction of politicians, particularly Bush, Blair and Jack Straw. It is all generic platitude-mumbling. Read what they say: it could be a formulaic set of words for any given atrocity. You pricks started this: now find a way to finish it well.

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