Erik Larson

Nov 26, 2008

The Terrorists

Muslim militants are at it again . Shocker.

101 people dead and counting. Here we go again. And in America, the conspicuous disappearance of any public discussion about terrorism for some time now. As if, it’s a Bush topic . Somehow, some way, in our domestic self-absorption, I think we’ve managed to connect the unpopular President Bush with the idea of terrorism , as if, ridding ourselves of the one, the other will somehow go away, or just be a non-factor. But of course it won’t go away, as we’ve seen tonight.

I confess to shedding Oprah Tears (or, I mean, getting stricken with Obamamania). But now the hard realities. Politic campaigns, Democrats back in power, none of this represents a solution ; we haven’t solved anything yet. Obama hasn’t solved anything yet. He doesn’t even have the job yet (yet somehow the world has seemed a safer, better place, hasn’t it?). And what a job he will have. The militants in Mumbai, apparently, checked passports to round up the Americans and Brits. Nice to confirm that we’re still the evil ones. And I’m sure we’ll retain the title for some time, whether our new President has a Southern drawl or not. They don’t care. President Elect can sound like Albert Einstein (actually, that might be a tad too tutonic , but you get the picture). He’s still representing the Evil Nation, as far as extremists are concerned.

So now the blood on the streets, and the fires, and the frantic shouts are with us once again. And we hear once again that they were targeting the U.S. and Great Britain. It’s I think safe to reject the notion that the Mumbai attackers didn’t tune in to CNN recently enough to know that Barack Obama is our President Elect. They don’t care.

Addendum

Poor Rachel Maddow. She’s been yuck yucking it up lately, feeling the Obamamania oh-so-much. And now to see her somber face, talking off of the teleprompter about terrorists targeting Americans, doing her level best to keep up the light-spirited Bush-is-a-dummy banter in the rest of her show. Damned breaking news . Yes, damned indeed. I do hope that I’m wrong. But those dark days of September 11 never left us. We just wished them away.