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The Daily Paradox

The massacre in Moscow

After the horror of such terrorism, after the sadness for those who lost their lives and those who lost their loved ones, after all that comes the shock. In the case of the massacre in Moscow the shock is double edged. A state so tightly controlled, with such invasive surveillance both at home and elsewhere, is surely able to pay attention to warnings from other countries?  They seem to have had more than a few.

Can it be serious that the Ukraine war was stretching the observation resources of a country of 165 million people being effectively run by one man? If accident is a highly probable cause of the next World War, events in Moscow in the past few days give us reason to be most fearful. Control is one thing. Disastrous control is what accidents are made of.

There have been suggestions that the massacre was actually planned by the authorities. Personally I find that over the manic border. True, Putin had just “won” an election with (I quote) 87% of the vote, but even if the possibility existed that such a figure was true, the circumstances that made it so would rob it of all fairness credibility. A massacre of educated citizens attending a concert would hardly enhance the reputation of someone just elected to save the nation.

The Kremlin’s immediate attempt to implicate Ukraine in the disaster would also seem too far-fetched a possible reason for staging it. Control requires comprehension and that means forecasting people’s reaction and response to situations that arise or are engineered. It seems unlikely that the majority of the world would be expected to support a contention that a fairly hard-pressed defender would instigate something so wicked to draw attention to his strategic incompetence. Unacceptable military tactics are presented to us daily about Gaza.

Having said that I must in fairness add that my own inclination to believe in humankind undoubtedly plays a part in my reluctance to endorse such evidence of what even the kindest Maker would surely find it impossible to forgive. Perhaps age has not yet taught me the lengths people will go to in the interests of power. It is also right that people must be allowed their point of view. To attempt to lock or frighten them into our view would be as unforgiving as what we think those of other opinions than our own are already doing.

Surely, however, humanity has learned, even in its brief tenancy on the planet, that happiness is achieved by appreciation, not by destruction? Is the morality of harmony so neglected that we must destroy each other in order to learn the value of life?

An appraisal of a tragedy should end on a note of optimism. For once I am lost to find the words to convey that. May I ask you to fill this gap in today’s Daily Paradox by telling me, and the patient readers of this essay, where is the sunrise in our deeply dark world?

One thing is certain.

Only we can find it.

Good morning.
John Bittleston

26 March 2024