Friday 5 November 2010

Bonfire Night: A Counter-Terrorism Celebration

Guy Fawkes cartoon
"You can't even carry a barrel around these days since that Guy!"
 Tonight is Bonfire, Fireworks or Guy Fawkes Night a strange UK custom that dates back from November 5th 1605 when a plot to assasinate the first monarch to rule over the newly formed union of England and Scotland was foiled.  Guy Fawkes was the plotter found underneath the House of Lords with 36 barrels of gunpowder after an anonymous tip-off.  The plotters were all hanged and in celebration a law was passed in Parliment that the 5th of November was to observed with special services and sermons.  That act may no longer be in place but we still celebrate the 5th with bonfires and fireworks that some inconsiderate people are still letting off late into the night.

I find it odd that this day is still remains in our calendar, that we still want to burn in effigy a Catholic terrorist who plans for a spectacular failed.  Today we are fed regular reports of failed terrorist plots none of which merit a holiday merely more inconvience when we do go on holiday.  It is tempting to compare Islamic terrorists today with what todays media would label a Catholic Fundamentalist cell but it is too easy to fall into the trap of rewriting history to try and present a completely foriegn world as something modern.

My Guy Fawkes cartoon doesn't try and make light of the horrors that terrorists plan but rather observe that the main effect it has on us is the measures we have to put in place to prevent it.

For a lighter take on Bonfire Night Matt's cartoon today is excellant.

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