Real, Actual People That I Have Met Being Killed By Terrorism
The Taliban launched an attack at the Serena hotel in Kabul a few hours ago. The Norwegian foreign minister Jonas Gahr Støre was staying at the hotel and attending a meeting at the time. He was one floor below the suicide bomber, but was not injured. A Norwegian reporter from the Dagbladet newspaper was killed by gunfire. I've seen both of these men in real life. Støre just two months ago.
Foreign policy as we experience it is mostly just ink on a page or pixels on a screen, but suddenly it zooms up very very close. The accelerating speed at which the world can go from being very far away to killing someone standing next to you seems to be rapidly becoming how we think, hohttp://www.blogger.com/img/gl.link.gifw we have to think, of globalisation. Even in this, the most shielded and padded corner of the world. But there is something hypocritical about this, isn't there? About how important it suddenly gets when it's people we've vaguely seen in the middle distance sometime?
The UN Secretary General is saying Støre was the target, and this shows that we must strengthen security. The Taliban are saying they didn't even know Støre was in the building, they were just gunning for NATO personell in general, but oh by the way would we mind terribly pulling our troops out of Afghanistan?
Update: Daily Kos has a post, too with more info in English on Norwegian Afghanistan policy and some background on the hotel.