< meta name="DC.Date.Valid.End" content="20050825"> Amendment Nine: Bombay Bombing and Antibodies

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Bombay Bombing and Antibodies

It will always be Bombay to me... so much for that. I've been slowly digesting the news about the train bombings in Bombay, as well as some rather insightful analysis here and here as well.

I must admit, those who can so quickly analyze these events in a dispassionate and objective frame of mind are people I truly admire. I'm typically on autopilot for the first few weeks after something like this happens. All instinctual, not very intelligent I freely concede.

But piecing together what I can from news accounts, analysis, and other sources of information, I'm struck by a couple of things.
(1) The bombers could not have gone after a more unprepared, overcrowded, inept target. The police in India are pathetic. Their resources scarce. Their capability to counter and foil plots like these is almost non-existent.

(2) The rate of change from utterly useless to somewhat meaningful presence in the police force in Bombay has been staggering. As if overnight, the police and other domestic security forces in India have started to cooperate, burning the midnight oil, getting things done.

(3) Stories of the "poor" in Bombay helping out (like this one for example), indeed in some instances acting as first responders in America, are not only widespread, but the stuff of legend. Inspiration will be found from these, and it will bring an otherwise deeply separated community more together than before.

(4) The people of Bombay appear to have given up completely on their domestic security forces and as a result, are taking many matters into their own hands. They are searching platforms now, looking in bins, under railtracks, etc.
I can't draw too many conclusions from these observations, like I said, my head still isn't really that cool. However, if I were a doctor, and able to give cold, dispassionate diagnosis, I would say these observations are evidence of some type of disease fighting mechanism, and if we allow it to catalyze, it just might kill this ailment off.

I'm equally struck by how many of these trends were present after 9/11 in America, and how few of them are present outside NYC in America today.

UPDATE: I stupidly forgot to link to Mark's post over at Zenpundit, which was equally insightful but having the benefit of piecing all others together. He's also recently posted a comment over here, which I commend to everyone's attention but that I also hope a certain A9 commenter will take a look at when he has the time... nudge, nudge, wink to Smith.

Also, in general, I've received some email from regular commenters here asking about Zenpundit, Robb's site, tdaxp, PurpleSlog and others. There is a certain cross-referential culture between all these blogs (and several more), and they are all excellent. I can't endorse one over the other, but can say without a doubt that each of these writers puts a good deal of thought into what they write about and it shows. Bookmark them!