- First, in Vice, my latest article on the silencing of UK and US veterans! Read, share, all that stuff. Fine people, in difficult situations, put themselves on the line to speak to me.
- The Afghan government is deep in talks over a “US security deal”. Should it not be called an Afghan security deal? I have no fucking idea. Only today the White House threatened to pull out all troops unless Karzai acquiesced. I thought it was just the Mayor of Toronto who smoked crack…
- Deep joy. Certain players within the Afghan government are considering bringing back stoning for adultery. Team Nato, which this week is wondering what to do with itself now that the war is “over”, has succeeded in replacing a violent regime with a violent regime. I for one think we all deserve another medal.
- Iran, something was happening, and now something has happened. Israel is angry and says Iran could have a bomb within weeks…again. This immediately tells me the “something” that happened fell short of a decision to bomb Iran to smithereens immediately. Iran continues to look on wryly, lending weight to my suspicion that Iran, for all it’s human rights flavoured shortcomings, is still cleverer than the rest of us. Has peace broken out? Unlikely. I think this is less a parley, more a shift. Empire endures.
- #Murika… Or Toronto anyway, which is America For Beginners, I think. Anything built before 1996 is accounted “historical”. The city is pretty, but blighted with dark satanic condominiums. I spend twenty days there in the haze of mayoral crack vapour, visiting with a nefarious colony of Americans. Canadian’s are very pleasant, but I knew that. I was elated to find that Americans are on the whole neither fat nor stupid – they are in fact hospitable, interesting, thoughtful and emotional in a way which is both disconcerting and endearing. In fact, I have developed a heretical love of Yanks! I was even happier to discover that they can not only manufacture but ingest in some quantity palatable beverage. We spoke on political platforms about war things, were hosted by Afghans and I pretended to be a public intellectual. Then we went to the woods. Germans filmed me filmed drunk-dancing to the Moulin Rouge soundtrack. A philosophy student told us at a public gathering that all public gatherings are fascistic. Deadpan.
- Jiu Jits News – I’ve had two weeks off. My instructor texted me asking where I was. I said I was back Tuesday. He said: “Oss, Guerrierro” or something. It made me feel like I belonged.
- Guardian Freelance Journalism Masterclass. This was great. Stylistic tips and practical advice about pitches and markets. It was also very Guardianista. I ate lasagne. Hobnobbing afterwards, I found an ale called Warlord and drank it from a horn. Not really. The horn part.
- Veterans for Peace UK marched to the Cenotaph. I remembered how to right-wheel. Within a week of our wreath laying, dozens of new veterans were making enquiries. I am sure that this was because of my crisp, exquisite drill.