Thursday, March 11, 2004

Muerte en Madrid

The terrorist attacks on a Madrid commuter train which may have killed over 130 people has been attributed to the Basque separatist group ETA. Yet its ideology and operational linkages cannot be so narrowly confined. ETA has deep Communist roots. It's stated goal is to establish a Basque socialist state and takes the Algerian war against France for its operational model. It is another instance of the class of subnational groups, which with the assistance of modern technology, has found a way preserve an historical relic into the 21st century. Time has stopped in the world of both the ETA and Al-Qaeda. The date doesn't matter. For the one, it is forever 1917. For the other the calendar's last leaf turned in the 8th century.

The clock has run out for others too. In one candidate's mind it will always be Good Morning, Vietnam sometime before or after Camelot, who knows when? In the consciousness of others it is September 10, 2001, the world as it should have been and will be again. But in sidereal time, according to the motion of the spheres, it is the day after hundreds of people have been murdered and many hundreds more maimed, on a simple commuter train.

And tomorrow will either bring justice or time will not matter.


ETA Party leader Arnaldo Otegi blamed "the Arab resistance" for the Madrid attacks. Pat Cox of the European Union declared "there shall be no safe haven for terrorism and terrorists in our European Union". We report. You deride.