Monday, 2 May 2011

Monday Blue Skies


As I was sitting in the early morning sun looking at the deep blue sky the media was rejoicing in a story that had nothing to do with that wedding! Although I suspect one or two still managed to mention it on several pages.  US soldiers had taken out Osama bin Laden. After ten years of searching he had been traced to his hideaway in Pakistan.  An efficient cut throat operation removed him and brought some sort of closure for America and those bereaved on wounded by 9/11. The whole incident leaves many unanswered questions, and I doubt Wikileaks will help here, however time will reveal much of what has occurred.  One thing is sure, those who attack the United States in such fashion now know they face a very real threat of being caught. There is now of course a very real danger of reprisal attacks, on a smaller scale than 9/11,occurring in several places.Groups such as these will encourage suicide bombers, although not doing this themselves, and human life means little to them and their twisted philosophy sadly.

It is inconceivable that there was nobody in high circles in Pakistan that did not know of bin Laden presence in the country. His establishment was not far from a military base and the compound was clearly too important in the social hierarchy of that nation to have been ignored.  Maybe the government did not know of his existence, but someone clearly knew! What effect will this have on the many violent groups in Pakistan now? This poor country has an very ineffective government, and one that appears to care little for their people.  It does however have constant bombings, on buses, in buildings and in main streets.  There are shootings of people of all rank, even amongst the highest, and vast numbers of police and army have suffered at the hands of extremists of one group or another. Pakistan Taliban claim they will attack the government because of this, and it appears the suffering within this sad nation is to continue. Muslim kills Muslim, Christians are in mortal danger, and even cabinet members are shot for speaking out against the violent ones. On top of this floods devastated the land and little aid was forthcoming, within or without Pakistan.  This is a very sad nation at the moment, fear fills the people in a manner not known before reports a BBC journalist with many years experience of the country, and no end is in sight after this incident. At least the US can be satisfied that one major door from 9/11 has now been closed.

To lighten the mood somewhat here is a picture of a steam train. What could be better to lighten the mood? Nothing! This one, 'Morayshire' is as you can tell, a  Nigel Gresley built D49. By 'built' I do not mean Nigel actually 'built' the thing himself, oh no, he was the designer of the beast and he just 'designed' it and had others put the thing together.A machine such as this is not built in your garage you know. He did this while working for the London & North East Railway Company. In fact I do believe, but have yet to prove, my grandfather drove steam trains for them also in the late 19th century, or at least he did until drink appears to have made him 'move on' to labouring work! He was last known to drive the shunter down at the gas woks in Granton, in between pints. The lovely engine shown here served its time since completion in 1928 working the lines of Scotland. This lasted until 1961 when the ignominy began under Beeching and rail lines and steam engines disappeared overnight. The new efficient diesel and electric trains that appeared throughout the nation were much more efficient indeed, except when they broke down of course. The romance of steam remains, the aroma of the coal inspired steam filling Caledonian Station stays with me yet, as indeed does lots of little black specks that landed in my short back and sides. This engine is now preserved you will be delighted to know and has been known to run at the Bo'ness & Kinneil Railway.


1 comment:

FishHawk said...

It is really bothering me that they buried him at sea so quickly. For this leaves the door wide open for speculation about him not actually being dead.