Wednesday, 23 March 2016

After Brussels

Only a short post this afternoon.  This story from AP was emailed to me by FindLaw earlier today -
French officials are condemning the Brussels attacks in the strongest terms.
Prime Minister Manuel Valls, speaking after a crisis meeting called by the French president, says "we are at war. We have been subjected for the last few months in Europe to acts of war."
President Francois Hollande says "terrorists struck Brussels but it was Europe that was targeted” and all the world that is concerned."
Hollande also warned that "this war will be long" so sang froid and lucidity are needed.
Paris says it will light the Eiffel Tower in the colors of the Belgian flag. The city's mayor, Anne Hidalgo, described it in a tweet as a measure of "solidarity with Brussels."
To hear France speak of war, or considering itself at war, makes me uneasy.  That country paid a truly horrendous price in the First World War, with 6,100,000 casualties from a total mobilization of 8,400,000: a genuinely staggering casualty rate of 73.3%.

Image from here

France possesses a culture utterly filled with life.  When it speaks of war, and embraces death, I can only look on with a kind of horror that I find hard to explain.

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