VIEW FROM SLANE CASTLE: Resolve of City Rises through the Pain

Article excerpt

Byline: Lord Henry

WHAT happened in London on Thursday was profoundly shocking.

Yet it is not just the barbarity of the acts of terrorism themselves, but the deeper questions they raise which are truly disturbing.

London has risen to many crises before. Its people are stoical. The emergency services responded with admirable efficiency.

I have no doubt that people will refuse to be intimidated by such awful violence. Britain's Prime Minister Tony Blair encapsulated the thoughts of so many when he said "our resolve will hold firm".

Beneath this lurk some challenging questions. Since I started writing this column I have held the view that George Bush's and Tony Blair's war in Iraq would open Pandora's Box.

There was never originally a connection between Iraq and the terrible events of 9/11. But, by invading Iraq, both Bush and Blair connected the two events, so creating a breeding ground for extremism.

It enabled Osama bin Laden and al-Qaeda to use Iraq to ferment hostility to the West and gain new recruits. …