London Recalling


Fourteen years ago in London, terrorists tried to kill me.

There was nothing personal about it, mind you; they were literally trying to kill anybody at the time. It was February of 1991, during the thick of the Gulf War, and I was a visiting student at Oxford. On the morning of the 15th, I had planned to catch the early train to Victoria Station for a London day trip, but thanks to spending the previous evening out on the town (I have a vague memory of doing shots with a couple of Californians at an after-hours nightclub), I was slow getting out of bed and missed the train.

That hangover might have saved my life. During the thick of that morning’s rush hour, a bomb went off in a Victoria Station garbage can, killing one man and injuring 40 others. Because of the world situation, everybody’s immediate first thought was, “Arab terrorists,” but the bomb turned out to have been planted by the IRA, which had tried to murder Prime Minister John Major and his cabinet in a mortar attack on Downing Street just eleven days earlier.

The Victoria Station bombing had an unexpected effect on me and the other students, and that counts for both the Brits and the Americans. After the Downing Street attack, there was a lot of nervousness and quiet talk about keeping a low profile and avoiding possible terrorist target locations.

After Victoria, though, everything changed. The shift was remarkable and consistent from the most bleeding-heart New York Chomskyites (one of my roommates) to the most reactionary Southern right-wingers (er, me): everybody got mad. To an individual, the reaction was, “I’ll be damned if I let these barbarians make me change my plans, or my mind, or my life.”

I fully expect to see the same reaction out of Britain after today (it’s already started, in fact; check out the fire-breathing denunciation from London Mayor “Red Ken” Livingstone), and woe betide the Islamofascists who’ve been hiding in plain sight in their midst until now.


8 Responses to “London Recalling”

  1. dittybopper Says:

    Then there is this from the esteemed George Gallway:

  2. Jim Rhoads (vnjagvet) Says:

    Something about that Anglo Saxon mentality. Remember the blitz really got the brits riled up. No more Chamberlinian BS. Those night raids on Germany were a sight to behold. Dresden, for example.

    I suspect this will not cause the kind of reaction that the Madrid bombings got.

  3. Dmac Says:

    How right you are, Will. I’ve always argued with my we – hate – Bush friends that if the 9/11 terrorists has executed their plans in their entirety (they planned to fly planes into Big Ben and the Eiffel Tower at roughly the same time, but bad weather prevented it), we’d never had had any disagreement with the Europeans.

    Watch the proverbial shit hit the fan now.

    God Save the Queen!

  4. .:.WitNit.:. Says:

    The Cowards and the Heroes

    One thing I do know: Cowards attack unsuspecting innocents. No matter what that idiot of a commedian Bill Maher says, suicidal terrorists who disguise themselves and target innocents are goddamn cowards.

  5. neocitizen Says:


    I took an excerpt from your excellent post.

  6. Chuck Pelto Says:

    TO: Will Collier
    RE: Red Ken…

    …is part of the problem. He has opposed the War On Terror from the get-go.

    Look what it got London….



  7. William Says:

    I hope their reaction shows the Spaniards for the cowards they are. An increased deployment in Iraq would be perfect.

  8. Ricky bin Ricardo (Abu Babaloo) Says:

    Brits made of sterner stuff than the Spanish? God, let’s hope so…although I’m worried about how their attitudes will shake out once Fisk, Monbiot and the fifth-column scumbags from the BBC have a few weeks to pound, Pound, POUND the theme that “it’s our fault” for not sufficiently cringing before the Islamofascists.

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