As some may know, I have had several novels published as e-books, but my favourite story, the theme of which is based upon British politics, is the only one which actually made it to a print version. I saw the hero of my story as a ‘right-wing bruiser’, with a limited vocabulary and equally limited grasp of modern politics. The other ‘hero’ was a machine: if an electronic tape recorder, invented in Nazi Germany to immortalise the thoughts and hopes of Adolf Hitler can be really termed ‘heroic’. That machine was capable of much more than the inventor envisaged; with it’s remarkable capacity for recording not only the voice of that evil man, but also seemed to carry his deepest thoughts as it captured them on that special tape.
The novel has many interwoven plot-lines and outcomes, but one in particular came to my mind yesterday when reading about the terror bombing in New York, and the strange, almost muted reaction of the Mayor. In my story, there has been a series of deadly bombing attacks; firstly a suicide bomb attack on an Asian Harmony Centre in Salford, killing the Home Secretary and 108 other victims. The next set of suicide attacks were all set in passenger coaches which had departed from Leeds, and were all timed to happen simultaneously. The carnage, in my story-line, was over five-hundred dead, with many injured. The novel’s hero, Charlie Watson, now an MP and leader of his own small Party, has discovered that the Government knows who funded and organised the deadly attacks, but is staying mute, and hoping that the furore will die away. He talks with an elderly Peer who has encouraged his path in Parliament from the beginning:-
The Peer’s motorised wheelchair whispered slowly across the flagstones as the pair passed across the frontage of the magnificent old building, “I was in two minds whether to call you before your staff phoned up and said you were coming down to see me; two minds because I really don’t know how the country would react to the news that our own Government was considering suppressing news of the inspiration of the murderous attacks on our Country. If you are aware, as you obviously now are, what will stop you from declaring a ‘Revival’ crusade against the countries which supported the fools who planned and carried out the bombings? The actual numbers of planners in both Afghanistan and Pakistan probably number less than one hundred, far fewer than that in Saudi Arabia. What will the voters who simply give you trust, think if you whip them into a frenzy against people who differ from them only by the colour of their skin or the nature of their religion?”
Charlie’s face was akin to graven stone as he grappled with the boulder which the old Earl had thrown at him. ‘The Prime Minister and close advisers possibly knew of the authors of the plot, and were even considering either doing nothing, or even worse saying nothing, because of where a quarter of Western oil came from’; his colleagues in Government were conspiring to keep news of the killings from a Nation who had a right to know!’ He sank down onto a bench at the side of the terrace, staring at the trees in the distance, whilst his elderly host parked his wheelchair at right-angles to the bench. “How could they even consider this, this betrayal, Harven?
I stated that this particular extract from my book was brought to mind with the extraordinary reaction from the ultra-liberal New York Mayor Bill de Blasio. I just wonder if it had crossed de Blasio’s mind to down-play this attack, and term it as ‘Neighbourhood Violence’?