Follows now a note to young Daniel and the morning cafes, cigarettes and croissants group concerning the troubles in the Levant complete with a clickable map at heading for ready reference:
Putting, as best we can, domestic rhetoric aside here, the sad truth, Dan, is that there is really nothing any of us can do about conditions in the Levant, as these kids over there play by their own, fast changing, rules and do not give us forewarning what those rules are today or will become tomorrow.
I think trying to establish direct linkages and cause and effect relationships in that part of the world is very dicey business. I suppose people have to pick somebody to blame–you are a man of the Department and I am sure that you and the Department do level best, but I am not sure the Department, or any of us reading, are really any better or worse informed than anybody else respecting developments in Levant, Middle East, North Africa and West Asia.
I think the collective wisdom and knowledge we’ve put together so meticulously over our time likely cannot anticipate actions in that sphere to any degree of real usefulness.
Worse yet, the ubiquity of very dangerous modern weaponry, readily available, taken together with the condition that we find ourselves, for indisputably the first time in history, in a world on which literally everyone is politically engaged, adds to the discomfort we all feel.
We are as doctors, forced to tell patients we simply do not know what to do to save them from a fate worse than–a contrition embarrassing to doctors but far more troublesome to the expectant patients of the world who hopefully look to us to guide into deep, labyrinthine jungles, unmapped and uncharted.
Yet, we are all Englishmen here, thank God. Needs must and we all press on, heads high into the wind, hoping the very best.