I woke up this afternoon to horrible news, the series of coordinated terrorist attacks in Paris which claimed the lives of over one hundred victims. I haven't been to Paris in a decade, so it's hard to reconcile the scenes of carnage with the City of Light that I remember... it's especially jarring to see crimson carnage sullying a city characterized by the rosy life.
This has been a terrible year as far as terror attacks in France are concerned, starting with the Charlie Hebdo attack and continuing with the attempted trainboard massacre. This new horror is the nadir of a bad year.
Right now, my sympathies and well-wishes go out to the French people. I feel a kinship with Parisians- my mother's father's mother left Paris to escape from an arranged marriage, only to fall in love with a merchant seaman from Alsace-Lorraine, and my mother spoke both French and Swiss-German at home as a young girl. While in Paris, I noted that the French people were much more hospitable than American popular culture would lead one to believe. I hope that the French government responds to these terror attacks in a wise faction... fourteen years ago, the metropolitan area which I call home came under attack, and my government responded to these attacks by launching a war against innocent bystanders, a war calculated to line the pockets of administration apparatchiks with our tax dollars and Middle Eastern petroleum reserves, a war which caused much of the blowback that led to these current attacks. I hope that President Hollande is prudent... skulls need to be cracked, but they have to be the right ones.
May Liberté, égalité, fraternité never give way to nihilistic fundamentalism or a paranoid security state. Vive la France! Bon Courage!