Blowback in Rochester

More thoughts on Abu Faraj. When I can wrench my mind away from the absurd notion of the Leader as jihadist, I find a more realistic cross-reference in Pierre Poujade, the French politician of the mid twentieth century. Poujade, a one-time RAF pilot, commercial traveller, Pétainiste, pied-noir by marriage and sympathy, organized a movement of resistance to big business, … More Blowback in Rochester

‘Oh Land, we are murdered for your preservation’

Off last Monday to Saffron Walden’s wonderful new cinema, the Saffron Screen (yes, that’s a plug) to see Mohammed Rasoulof’s fine new film, Manuscripts Don’t Burn. The film is a claustrophobically circular journey at several levels, a snake biting its own tail, a topologically incestuous Klein bottle with no inside and no outside.  It begins … More ‘Oh Land, we are murdered for your preservation’

Confined to Barracks

The news today has been full of events at Bassingbourn barracks, where the British army has been training Libyan soldiers. Of the 300 Libyans in England, three have been charged with sexual assault (and two of them have pleaded guilty); two more are in custody charged with raping a man in a Cambridge park; and another … More Confined to Barracks