In 1993 he was in Guam when a devastating earthquake reduced his hotel to a pile of rubble. In 1995 he was literally pitched out of bed by the vertical jolt that announced the beginning of the Kobe earthquake. And on September 11 2001 he was – yes, you guessed it – in the World Trade Centre in New York when the towers were hit. [Read more…]
A few weeks ago in this blog, I wrote about how the Japanese spiritual connection with the natural world was, in part, a consequence of them living on a string of islands with such turbulent seismology (Metro-madness). Such observations now seem facile in the light of the unfolding human tragedy as Japan recoils from Friday’s devastating earthquake and tsunami.
As I write this, the Japanese authorities are struggling to contain the consequences of the damaged nuclear facility at Fukushima and the death toll is now estimated to be over 10,000. Watching the news footage of the tidal wave racing towards land, one is struck by how linear and controlled the wave looks, almost like a physics experiment manufactured in an enormous laboratory. And then, when it reaches land, it unleashes mayhem, chaos and the most appalling loss of life. [Read more…]
My colleagues are departing for North Africa. And I am sitting here left behind in central London wishing I was going with them. History is being made and I want to see it up close.
But what kind of history? Commentators vie with each other for the most appropriate comparison.
– “Is it like 1989 and the fall of the Berlin Wall?”
– “No, this is the new 1968 and The Prague Spring?”
– “No it isn’t, this is just like 1848 and the spate of European revolutions that swept the continent.” [Read more…]
Do you think former British Prime Minister Tony Blair is embarrassed at the news footage now being regularly replayed on television around the world of him embracing Colonel Gaddafi during his visit to Tripoli in 2004?
Fleetingly, I think is the answer. [Read more…]
If I was Aung San Suu Kyi, I would be extremely ticked off.
I would be sitting there in Burma watching events unfold in Tunisia, Egypt, Bahrain, Libya and I would be thinking:
“Hey. What about me?” [Read more…]