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London’s New Normal: Resilient, Yes. But Not Entirely Intrepid.

“I live in a very mixed area, I work around Muslims,” Mr. Bailey said. “We do have to make sure that we don’t point the finger in the wrong direction.”

“London is a very special place,” he said. “All these people from all over.”

That made me think of something Richard Thompson, a former MI6 official, told me. “Terrorism is not an enduring strategic threat to this country,” he said. Wednesday’s fire could well have killed more people than all three attacks combined, he said, warning against loss of perspective and knee-jerk reactions.

Perhaps the earliest recorded terrorist plot in London was the so-called Gunpowder Plot in 1605, when a pro-Catholic conspiracy tried to assassinate King James and blow up Parliament with 36 barrels of gunpowder. The plot was foiled and Guy Fawkes, who had been guarding the barrels under the palace of Westminster, was hanged, drawn and quartered.

To this day, Londoners celebrate Guy Fawkes Day every Nov. 5 with fireworks. It is one of the biggest family outings of the year. As John Robin, a history teacher in East London, said, beaming: “What better way to deal with terrorism?”

Source: NYT > World

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