I first heard the news about the London attacks on the local NPR station while sitting in morning traffic. It was my regular commute to work via I4. Unfortunately there'd been an earlier accident on the east-bound side (my side) at the I4 and 408 connector snarling traffic to a near standstill. So starting at the I4 OBT exit, I spent 15 minutes slowly crawling towards the ramp leading off I4 and on to the 408 eastbound.
Normally I'd have been cursing the traffic and the drivers that caused the backup, but this morning that faded into the background while I listened to the continuous but meager news coming out of London. And I thought back to Madrid and Bali and of course New York and 9/11. So I sat quietly in traffic listening to the radio and basically getting to work on internal autopilot. Once I got to work I hit the various news sites for more detailed information; CNN, ABC News, MSNBC, and especially BBC News.
As the morning progresses here in Orlando the death toll continues to climb. BBC reports 30 while CNN reports 40. The numbers are sure to climb as the day progresses. BBC is reporting at least seven blasts. al-Qaeda is claiming responsibility. Stock markets in London and New York have taken a hit.
I await with a certain numbness the unfolding of events. I'm curious to see how Britons will react to this attack. When Spain was attacked Spain elected a new prime minister that then promised to pull Spanish troops out of Iraq. Will England react in a similar way, or will they stiffen their resolve with regards to al-Qaeda? And will this attack contribute to further intrusiveness into Londoner's basic privacy? London has an extensive camera system in place already. They also have a large Islamic community. With al-Qaeda claiming responsibility, will England crack down on this community? You have to assume that some support for this attack came from that community. Will the Islamic community cooperate and help root out those responsible?