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Barcelona Attack : Black Ribbons (again)

category international | crime and justice | news report author Friday August 18, 2017 20:25author by iosaf mac diarmadaauthor phone 0034600341065 Report this post to the editors

Yesterday the city where I live was victim to terrorist attack which has long been anticipated and it would seem prepared for. The attack happened within 600 metres of my home. I pass on foot every day the street which yesterday became a trail of human blood dragged out by a young man turned mass murderer, to be claimed and vaunted later by so-called DAESH/ISIS and then it seems to be a trigger for another simliar attack on a tourist town. You will understand if I come to this text with attitude. I have pointed out many times the soft points in the city where I live & yesterday my wife and another our closest friend were both caught up in on ordeal which lasted hours. There are lessons to learn. These are thus my initial published thoughts on the terrorist attack I and my partner survived and endured 17th August 2017 & are party to the words I am writing and publishing now in various languages. There are lessons to learn & I feel it my duty to point out a few. Especially since a meme idea I promoted lots perhaps thought up if i can remember correctly is the go to for societal collective fetishized memorial glyph. I never wanted to see black ribbons again. But they do come back & they will.

2004 - iraq war - few years after 911 - commuter train - officially we had no idea who we were fighting
2004 - iraq war - few years after 911 - commuter train - officially we had no idea who we were fighting

These are my initial published thoughts on the terrorist attack I and my partner survived and endured 17th August 2017.

Fadó Fadó, long time ago, when many more readers came to this corner of the internet, I published a series of articles in reaction to a terrorist attack on Madrid, the 11th of March 2004. I promoted a simple design back then, to my surprise the idea found traction and was accepted by countless people. i had thought my suggestion was easy to reproduce and helped people express collective mourning, to show publicly their fellowship with a community in shock. My design was a black ribbon, one which was easy to knock up variations upon and print out. I admit the ribbon idea was based on my much younger years when I had worn a green ribbon in support of a complex idea back then : the inclusion of political prisoners in a tentative British Irish peace process. Am I turning some off the provenance? OH talk to me about my youth why not? The idea of a black ribbon took off the weekend of March 11th, 2004, whilst the then government of Spain falsely attributed an attack by Salafists in the ambit of Al Qaeda on Madrid by blaming the Basque armed seperatist group ETA. IT was a few days before a general election. An estimated 80,000 people took to the streets of Spain and the Spanish state and camped out in front of government offices and the offices of the ruling party demanding the truth... I was one... the ribbon was a moment in my life... I never wanted to see it used again In the last hours the city of my home where I have lived almost 20 years has been victim of a long anticipated terrorist attack. Even google now puts a black ribbon. I return to indymedia ireland to indulge POV reflections.
Yesterday I received a phone call from my girlfriend, my wife, my partner. She shouted at me at first, "please this is important listen!". She told me that she had been caught up in a stampede of people running from the main artery street "las Ramblas" of Barcelona's old city. She told me she was safe in a Danish bar. She had remembered all the conversations that we had about what to do, should we, as we expected, be in the city when he suffered a typical terrorist attack associated with and claimed by so-called DAESH / ISIS. 

She did not run with the crowd. She went to the wall of the street, she saw hundreds of others stampede and trip themselves up. She saw crying children seperated from the parents. A group of Italians were shouting that a van was being driven into people. She heard the Italian and walked sideways hugging the wall towards the nearest shop or bar which was open. This is what we had agreed to do. She was to stay in that bar for a further 7 hours within one of the police cordons placed within 15 minutes around the scene of a terrorist attack and the presumed escape route of the terrorist.

He is in a crack house in the Raval- At least that is the word on the street. Since he escaped into that neighbourhood, 5 people were shot dead as they attempted to carry out a second van driving assault in the Seaside resort town of Cambrils. In the early hours of this morning an explosion injured ten people, what was first attributed to a gas leak ifs now part of the terrorism investigation and is reported as being a bomb factory.

Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain have suffered a concerted and organised attack. Low sophistication in terms of weaponry. Clearly they took advantage of the terrain. Many, myself included have long noted that 3 of our busiest pedestrianized or mostly pedestrianized streets lacked concrete bollards or any significant impediment to such an attack.

Today we begin our official days of mourning. Black Ribbons are ubiquitous, many businesses are closed, my wife/gf/partner was told not to go to work in the business zone of the city. Small mercy for her. She spent 7 hours in a Danish IPA bar, everyone there made friends, and they felt reassured that the Catalan police used their street as an operational base. I used all my charm and language skills and that quality I have ..the you recognise me, & you know I do alternative walking tours of this area and I am part of teh community. . The cops behaved with professionalism. They were obviously as shocked as anyone. I published on facebook the information I got from my partner. I tried to allay fears or panic in my post, I said it was "rumours". It took 25 minutes for the "rumours" to become international newswire headlines. Our phones began to ring..,

The hours that followed saw misinformation spread. I past through 3 police cordons trying to get to collect herself. The cops told me at the final cordon that if I tried to cross ramblas, I would be in a shoot to kill zone. I did not try to cross ramblas. At the point twitter told us as much as Sky News. There was a hostage situation in a restaurant. This of course later was denied on the Catalan police force´s oen twitter account.
eYessons to learn..,

I would ask editors understanding and the privilege of returning to this text and expanding it.... or else I add to its information and write my analysis later on.... it is just that my phone is hopping again........... that is what happens when war comes to town and there is a mass murderer at loss less than a kilometer away, a young man who stole his own brother's driving licence to commit mass murder. He lived proximate enough to his big brother to feel unhappy. His family have been brought into protective custody. Terror has spread out like oozzed oil on foil.

But people have their mechanisms for collective response. They can photocopy black ribbons. 

Original reponse to mass terror of the Al Q variety - sophisticated multiple suicide bombings of early morning commuter trains, 25% of indiscriminate dead were workers without full EU documentation. They were given Spanish citizenship afterwards a forest of sapling trees in memorial in Madrid. Yesterday have news crews, an on the run terrorist who has seen a supposed 5 of his co-terrorist shot to death, people reacting...

oh yep.
we had a minute's silence with the king of and all his men women and horse.

I have spent all day talking to the people in my neighbourhood who were like me within 200 years kicking goal distance or a hole in one golf links euphoria tell me how it feels.........

How did we make the monster who stole his own brother's ID?

I shall go on adding..,

Related Link: https://www.indymedia.ie/article/63825?condense_comment...false

the idea was to simplify very old mourning wear - make it modern, without blaming anyone
the idea was to simplify very old mourning wear - make it modern, without blaming anyone

I honestly never ever want to see it again - i know it works - but every time i see it again - i cry
I honestly never ever want to see it again - i know it works - but every time i see it again - i cry

author by iosaf mac diarmadapublication date Sat Aug 19, 2017 14:00Report this post to the editors

The patron saint of Barcelona is Jordi, or in George. Thus local fascists often use the freely available flag of England as one their banners. It is quite visible in the video attached.
The British Daily Mail of course was on site to take photos as well. Through the night community action groups including I one I belong to worked to remove or cover neo-Nazi graffiti in the multi-cultural Raval area which adjoins the Ramblas avenue scene to the terrorist attack.
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4803858/Far-rig....html

Related Link: http://www.vilaweb.cat/noticies/video-un-grup-racista-i...rits/
author by iosaf mac diarmadapublication date Sat Aug 19, 2017 21:55Report this post to the editors

My city and community is in 3 days of official mourning. The King of Spain came and stood next to his prime minister Rajoy on plaça Catalunya to mark a minute's silence. All we heard was the whir of news crews machinery. Later he went to visit hospitals. I live in the old City of Barcelona and have done so for 17 years and the Ramblas is a boulevard I cross at least twice a day. I have spent the majority of the last two days stopping to talk to people who I see every day but never talk to. I have introduced my part of the conversation by saying that I think 2 minutes conversation reflecting our shared and communal beloved Barcelona is worth something. Because we are in mourning. We have now a set and functional pattern of collective behaviour in our response to mass murder events committed by young men in European societies. All the mass attacks we have suffered in Europe over the last ten years have been associated with Islamist radicalisation or the neo nazi far right. Thursday when we were still less than half an hour into our experience I posed the question of how many were we dealing with? Lone wolf? Duo? a trio? they hardly ever do quartets... then we talk more people.

There was blood on our street. A lot of people, one dozen, co-ordinated and planned a worse attack we are informed.

We are in official mourning & there are some questions which are best left until later to either attempt to answer or wish could be asked.

I note the slogan "No Tenim Por!" = "we are not afraid" in Catalan. I consider the visibility of radicalising a dozen people to conspire and commit mass murder.

We are not afraid but we have been victims of terrorism. There are lessons to be learnt and new ways to see the old plumage.

 
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