Jonathan Fryer

Writer, Lecturer, Broadcaster and Liberal Democrat Politician

Shout-out for Brussels

Posted by jonathanfryer on Tuesday, 22nd March, 2016

Brussels attackThe latest terrorist attacks in Brussels made me sick to the bottom of my soul. Targeting modes of transport — Zaventem airport and the city’s metro system — is the worst kind of random killing as well as an attempt to scare people away not just from the Belgian capital but from travelling altogether. Freedom of movement is one of the most precious things we citizens of the European Union have gained from the EU, and violent fanatics must not be allowed to undermine that. Having lived in Brussels for seven years, initially working for Reuters, subsequently as a freelancer, I have a particular affection for the place. The Belgians themselves have a particular attitude to life, perhaps influenced by being occupied twice in the 20th century, which I appreciated: low-key, quirky and stubborn, which may not sound the most attractive of national characteristics but which proved brilliant for survival. Of course, the Brussels attacks were not just aimed at Belgium; the symbolism of Brussels as the capital of Europe and HQ of NATO obviously made it a tempting target. This has happened twice now. Twice too often. While we wish the security forces well in their attempts to apprehend the culprits and dismantle terrorist cells, let us also shout out for Brussels and for all who live and work there. Courage! Nous sommes tous Bruxelles!


2 Responses to “Shout-out for Brussels”

  1. nigel hunter said

    The Government is recommending people to stay away from Brussels This will suit ISIS to the ground It also happened in Tunisia etc.. The Governments comments instil fear into people. Less people going hits their economies, ISIS wins. You do not win a war by telling people to run/stay away You do everything to keep life normal You frustrate the enemy By restricting peoples freedoms the enemy win a victory.

    • jonathanfryer said

      You are absolutely right, Nigel. I guess the FCO is covering it’s back in case any Brits subsequently get hit. But they are wrong, so wrong, as they were following the Tunisian attacks. We should stand proud and united in the face of terrorism, not hide in corners thank frankly are no safer than anywhere else.

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