Friday, 15 July 2016

How vulnerable we are

It was truly dreadful to wake up this morning to the news about the murderous attack on people celebrating Bastille Day in Nice last night. I spent much of the day following the news, realising how vulnerable hundreds of thousands of public gatherings are across the continent. Those who are murderously insane or just purely wicked in the name of their ideology, care nothing for their own lives, only for the lives they want to destroy. They can be impossible to spot or to stop, no matter how good criminal intelligence gathering networks may be. It's down to the training and discipline of the forces law and order to expect the unexpected, and respond in the moment. 

It's dreadful to contemplate that failure or success in such attacks is down to bad or good luck. Video footage showed that before the killer went on his destructive rampage a few traffic police risked their lives trying to stop the lorry, but to no avail. It's hard to imagine what those brave defenders must be feeling now, having done their utmost. 

In the end, I made myself stop watching the news and go for a walk. I went into town, initially with the intention of photographing the two bridges that cross the riu Servol, but once I'd done that, I kept walking to the south side town boundary, as far as the Romanian Orthodox church beside the N430a, which I visited back in September 2012. Then I walked to the sea, and returned along the coast road. I covered all of 10km, my longest walk so far. It's good to feel fit enough for this, heat notwithstanding.

After crossing the riu Servol bridge on the way back, I noticed for the first time a fenced plot of land by the side of the road among the houses. It was empty, except for a small concrete clad building in one corner with a metal door. 
There's no notice on the fence, either to say what this is, nor even to tell you to keep out. Someone mentioned recently Vinaros still had an historical remnant of Civil War time military installations, but didn't say where, and I've been looking along the coast to no avail so far. If this building is of military provenance, its windows aren't the right shape for a defensive building housing guns. Although close to the coast road, it's two hundred metres from the sea. So I'm wondering if it was a communications post, well behind front line defences. All I need now is a local historian to check this out with.

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