Terrorism has hit in London

With at least seven explosions apparently having occurred in London, Tony Blair is just saying that these are terrorist attacks and that he is flying down to London. He is tieing this into the opening of the G8 Summit and contrasts the goals of that meeting with the brutality of the attacks.

UPDATED There have been over 33 fatalities reported to date, and over 300 people injured. It appears that the devices used were of the same small "backpack" variety that were used in Spain. Powerful enough to do damage, but small enough that they are easy to set down and then leave under a seat, without much notice being taken during a rush hour. It also appears that there were only four explosions, three underground and a fourth on a bus.

Technorati Tags: ,

This is why people don't like mass transit - the feeling of being trapped and not in control of the environment around you. Forget about the fact that +100x the number of people die in cars every year - at least they feel in control. And sure Al Qaida only seems to target Mass Transit, not SUVs, so I guess the average person's reasoning will be to stay in your Hummer or Chevy truck.

Maybe out of this tragedy, the G8 can realize that global warming, terrorism and rising energy costs all have to do with one thing = Dependance on foreign oil and wastefulness.

Oddly, the price of oil fell 3%. This baffles me..

There will be plenty of time later to discuss What This All Means In The Grand Context of Energy and Foreign Policy; for now, I'll just say that I hope there aren't more deaths and injuries than already reported.

I'm sure I speak for everyone here when I say that our best wishes go out to everyone affected by these horrible attacks.

This Bloomberg story states that it has been the same way with 9/11, after which oil prices saw a decline due to reduced air travel. Could this be one of the ways of "demand desctruction"? I am surprised at this information that terrorist attacks cause oil prices to drop. I would expect them to cause the prices to go up, just in the case of war, not down.


Oil Drops From Record as London Explosions Stoke Demand Concern
July 7 (Bloomberg) -- Crude oil slumped the most in seven months, tumbling from a record $62.10 a barrel in New York, after terrorist attacks across London raised concern economic growth will slow and hurt demand.

Crude oil for August delivery sank as much as $4.08, or 6.7 percent, to $57.20 a barrel and was down $1.73 at 12:29 p.m. London time. The drop was the biggest since Dec. 1. The price earlier had climbed to the highest since the contract was introduced on the New York Mercantile Exchange in 1983.

Terrorism has ``a huge impact on the psychology of consumers,'' said Frederic Lasserre, the head of commodities research at Societe Generale SA in Paris. ``They become reluctant to spend. It has an impact on air travel and at the end on oil demand. Today's price drop is explained by the reaction to the September 11 attacks.''

Crude oil prices jumped more than $1 a barrel to $29 in the days after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on New York and on the Pentagon in Washington, before falling for the rest of the year as air travel suffered and the economy slowed. Crude oil ended the year at $19.84 a barrel.

I echo Lou's comments. This is a tragedy and we should hope and pray that the pain and suffering today is as low as possible.

And in terms of demand destruction, if we don't keep our eyes on this http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/4657145.stm then demand will probably fall by 33-50%. Not my preferred route but I think this is Mother Nature's Plan B if we don't get our act together.

Re: mass transit: remember, the fear of Asian Bird Flu is believed to be a significant factor in fueling the boom for private cars in China. Tragedies such as what we are witnessing in London today will do absolutely nothing to help convince people to use cars less and public transport more. Quite the opposite.

In the rush, I forgot, but I do share the feelings and prayers of Lou and Gmack.

I am also quite concerned that if Al Qaida or another radical Islamic organization claims responsibility or held responsible for these terrorist attacks, this could give ready ammunition to the fascists and xenophobes and cause attacks against the Muslims in the UK, or even elsewhere in Europe. UK has far more Muslims than Spain, and there were some civil riots in late 1960s in Birmingham and other cities in Britain with high Pakistani immigrant population.

@lou Grinzo

I'm sorry. You are absolutely rigth. I just join you with that.

The price drop was short lived, it bounced back over $60.

I'll join Lou in expressing my sympathy to the victims and their families.

In talking about geopolitical instability and its affect on oil prices, terrorism has permanently entered the calculation. This tragic attack is not the worst kind of incident that could have occurred. It seems more like an Al-Qaida warning issued during the G8 on the host country. This incident was not meant to disrupt Western economies but reminds us that these assholes are capable of carrying out such an attack.

I also send my sympathies to Londoners. I'm also hoping to receive news soon from one of my best friends that she, her husband, and friends are all OK.

They're just about to raise the threat level for mass transit (only). Great. Not only because I live in NYC, but also because of all of the reasons the commenters have discussed above.

Re: mass transit, peak oil, terrorism, and avian bird flu: The interactions between these are all perfect examples of why human stone age instincts are not well adapted to dealing with complex situations and why I fear that the social/political/economic effects of Peak Oil will be far more dire than they need to be. The problem is that the human animal responds far more to fear than to any other emotion, so anything that causes fear gets a completely disproportionate response, even if the response is illogical or against one's own interest in light of the bigger picture.

I suspect this is also why every great religion has teachings that directly or indirectly try to give their followers the tools and ability to control their fearfulness so they can transcend those stone age instincts.

It is not a good day.

Remember that terrorism is a physical attack on people who have lost their lives and loved ones, but is also a psychological attack on us all. Our thoughts and prayers are with those folks, but also for the comfort of the world.

This is but one piece of the conflict that seems inevitable, sadly. Hang in all.

This is certainly a terrible day for Londoners, and we should all feel sympathy for the suffering.

Need I remind the group that Britain and the United States are at war with two Islamic countries right now! Wars that are both directly and indirectly related to our need to secure foreign energy resources? Everyday tens of civilians are blown up in Iraq and Afganastan, either by our own munitions or those of the resistance fighters and criminal gangs running most of those countries as a direct outcome of our interventions.

In wars, the other side occasionally fights back, and good people in our own countries die needlessly. It is tragic indeed. But, I am always struck that we do not seem to find the same sympathies for the daily carnage in our war zones...

Oill prices be damned!

Our condolences go out of course to all in London who lost loved ones or know innocents who have been injured by these ruthless attacks.

Who could be ruthless enough to do this?

Good thing my focus has been shifted away from Bush and G8.
Good thing the Plame Blame Game is over for Karl Rove.
Good thing no one is noticing oil heading to $62.
Good thing that Downing Street memo is now another burnt sliver of paper floating among the other ashes around the London tubes.

Who could be ruthless enough to do this?

Code orange.
Code red.
Code flashing lights and mixed messages.
My brain is confused. What was I saying? Never mind mind. You forgot.
All is as it was on our Good Earth.

Time to Step Back.


Tedman said "But, I am always struck that we do not seem to find the same sympathies for the daily carnage in our war zones... "

Yeah, this attack in London is the same as one bad day in Iraq. Not to diminish the terrorism but many Americans hardly seem to know there's a war going on. Americans are apparently too busy running up unsustainable credit card debt to notice the daily death toll. Oblivious, numbed-out, emotionally shutdown. Sorry, but Americans living in Disneyland pisses me off.

And now some Al-Qaeda in Europe organization has taken credit for it and linked the attack to British support for the war. Blowback -- although these terrorists don't need an excuse...

My condolences and tears to all who have lost friends, family or limbs in this tragedy. Have we learnt nothing from 9/11? Unquestioned support of Israel and the House of Saud are the same now as before 9/11. Just that we've been and demolished two other Islamic nations since then, with Iran next on the list.

There's a solution to our involvement in Arab countries for the sake of the oil there.  It also solves global warming.

Make oil irrelevant.  Go negative..


I think most of the readers of The Oil Drum would be delighted to "go negative". However, a great deal of the discussion on this site is about the intractibilities of the problems of reducing oil consumption.

Re: the thermochemical zinc process, three questions:
1) Where is there a demonstration project large enough to be meaningful as an example of how to do this on an industrial scale?
2) How much zinc will this conversion require and how much is available?
3) How much time and expense will it require to: a) convert all U.S. electric powerplants to use this process; and b) convert the U.S. transportation system to use this process.

I can probably think of a dozen solutions to Peak Oil and/or Global Climate Change that have a valid basis in physics and work in a lab setting. The real trick, which are concerned with here on the Oil Drum, is implementing a solution( or solutions) in the real world fast enough to actually beat Peak Oil and Global Climate Change before the consequences of those phenomena destroy civlization.

Dear John "Nazi" Norris,

You are kicking well below the belt line, and I for one will not stand for it. Both of my parents are sole Holocaust survivors. They have no family. What the Nazis did to them is unspeakable which is precisely why it must be spoken of.

When the German economy was collapsing due to lack of oil, lack of markets, etc. and hyperinflation was ravaging the country, the masters of mind control, Gobbels and Hilter took over the unwitting brains of the masses. They convinced the masses that there was this small insular group, "Das Judean," who despite the fact that most of them lived in abject poverty, in rags, in small shtettles (ghettos -or the 'hood as you might call it today), that "they" "them" was responsible for all the world's trouble. They bent the minds of the masses, much as Rove does today, to vent their anger, their frustrations on this unarmed insular group of powerless people. They built a massive infrastructure of furnaces and showers for extermination of this insignificant group of people. They, the Nazis, elevated themselves into thinking of themselves as "the master race" because they had found a bunch of defensless bums to beat on (the impovershed Jews in their Hassidic garb). Gobells and Hitler answered only to the higher father.

Today, 60 years after the extermination camps, there are roughly about 10 million Jews left within a bulging world population of 6 BILLION people. Do the fuzzy math. That's 0.17% (or 1/600 expressed as a fraction).

Only about 5 million Jews live in "Israel". Do the math. That is 0.08% of the overall world population.

Yet people like you continue to propagate the blood libel lies about Israel being in control of the world and being at "fault" for everything that happens. You want to finish Hitler's pet project. Have you no shame sir?

Please step back and smell the stench of the wicked sh*t you're shoveling out. Forgive my anger --not. You owe me an apology. You owe my parents an apology. You owe the good people of Israel an apology. They are merely trying to survive in a hostile, oil-barren land surrounded by more mind benders of the Hilter ilk.

(P.S. Also, don't take it out on the Saudi's. They too, are trying to live in a barren desert land. They are far luckier than the Israeli's because at least they have huge reserves of black gold buried under their feet. Nonetheless, it's getting harder and harder to suck the spice out of the ground. They know it and we know it. So what is your solution ? "No Mr. Bond, I want you to die?")

Offendedly yours, --Step Back

The reason I lash out is because I see 1939 happening all over again.

Hey stepback, that's a bit strong, given John Norris's comment. There is an Israeli leftest movement and I agree with their position on the settlements in the occupied territory. Our support of Israel should be more discriminating. Israel itself has fundamentalists who jeopardize the peace process just as much as Hezbollah or the others.The Saudis present us with a precarious repressive monarchy that would be better replaced with a more liberal government that stands up to the Wahabis and doesn't cater to them -- if we're serious about bringing democracy to the Middle East, which I doubt.

Norris' statement is a political position. Nazis have nothing to do with it. And before you go off on me, I'm 1/2 Jewish myself and certainly no anti-semite. Actually, the facists I'm worried about live right here in the good 'ole USA.

Roy Smith:

1.  Researchers in Switzerland have a 45-kg/hour pilot plant.

2.  How much zinc you need depends on how much energy you want to store; a system which cycles the metal every few hours to meet daily electric demand is going to need little, while a system which is designed around power for vehicles and keeps a week's worth of inventory on hand (plus what's on the road) is going to need a lot.  I have some calculations of zinc inventory requirements based on 200 million vehicles here; my projection is that we'd need roughly 1 year's world production which ought to be easily produced over a decade or more.  Use of conventional secondary batteries recharged by grid power (a "battery/battery hybrid") would cut this requirement substantially.

3.  Time and expense?  Excellent question.  As I have neither data on the cost of the zinc-reduction plants (I doubt that an industrial scale plant has even been designed yet) nor on the cost of zinc-air cells (which don't seem to have been designed for passenger cars yet either), I can only say I don't know.  On the other hand, you can justify a lot of expense if you are competing against $60/bbl oil and producing net negative carbon emissions.

I'd try doing calculations of expense if I could find figures for comparable systems, but these things are either rare as hen's teeth on the web or my search-engine skills are not up to the task.

Step Back:  The House of Saud is in power due to its alliance with the Wahhabi priesthood.  This is the xenophobic sect from which Al Qaeda gets its ideology.  Responsibility does extend to Riyadh.

Hi stepback, labeling me a Nazi is to assume I hate Jewish people or I'm racist? If so, false assumptions. I was just trying to point out Bin Ladin's own reasons for 9/11 and that the situation hasn't changed - in fact it's deteriorated. I hate violence whether it's perpetuated by suicide bombers or the IDF or the US Marines. I too am scared by the drift towards fascism in the USA and the UK (where I live). I wish for the happiness of all sentient beings. Including you. Shalom.

Here is the one line zinger from J. Norris:

"Unquestioned support of Israel and the House of Saud are the same now as before 9/11."

He is putting all the people of Israel into the "same" bucket with the House of Saud. Suddenly they are one and the "same".

Then he is saying each of them receives "Unquestioned support" from you know who.

Then he is tying Israel to 9/11.
All in one devious line.

I know what he is doing. Do you?
This is an evil bit of neurolinguistics.

He slipping a whole lot of blood libel past the censoring gates of the neo-cortex. Planting it into the back of your mind. You didn't see it coming by, but suddenly in the back of your mind, all these equations have been implanted:

Israel=House of Saud=full blame for 9/11=needs to be questioned=we cannot behave the same to each of these as we did before 9/11.

If you were even 10% Jewish (and perhaps .8% Cherokee--just kidding) you would know that Israel has nothing nothing to do with 9/11.

This is *not* merely a "political position". There is no politics in it. What has Israel got to do with the House of Saud? Do you have pictures of Sharon holding hands with the Sauds, kissing up to them, looking deeply into their eyes for the good that lurks beneath? No you do not. You are filling in the gaps in your recollection with false evidence. It never happened. 4000 Israeli's did not suddenly leave the Twin Towers before the planes struck. It's the other way around. Many innocent Israeli's died in the 9/11 inferno with their New York bretheren. You are being played.

As always, the mind bending Gobbels of this world are playing the anti-semitic card. They are using neurolinguisitc tools to slip in haterd for a people that deserve the world's compassion rather than hate. Israel is the victim of all the hate mongering regimes in the world that cannot defend their own bad records and therefore divert attention away from themselves by pandering to the xenophobic tendencies of the masses.

There are "strangers" among you. Be wary of them. They wear strange garb. Kill them. Ignore what we are doing. They are your true enemy. Kill the stranger. Kill the stranger. Yes, let the anger flow through you, Aniken. Give in to the Dark Force. --If only Star&Oil Wars were not so closely linked to our current world. How sad that God created men and women with minds so easily manipulated by skilled mind benders.


Did not see your reply until after I posted.
Shalom and Sallam to all the innocent people of the world.
Where did you get that line about "Israel and the House of Saud".
When was it implanted into your brain, and by whom?

All the peoples of the world have great problems and plagues heading our way:
End of cheap oil
End of Clean water
Bird Flu
Global Warming
Brain Washing
Taxes to pay for the wars

How do we stop the ill tides of history from sweeping us back into the undertow?


stepback:  You might consider that many (most?) of us noticed the false equation, decided that it wasn't worth diverting the thread, and ignored it.  It reflects on the poster, not us.

As for "tides of history", things are moving VERY fast.  Do you remember the recurrent scare theme, "what happens to agriculture when we don't have natural gas to make nitrogen fertilizer?"  I blogged the first half of that (hydrogen production); now along comes the other half, fixation of nitrogen at room temperature and pressure.

Blindness can delay these technologies until they are urgently required, at which time they will be rushed into the field amid a lot of economic pain; but they are either already born or in the pangs of labor, and nothing short of mass amnesia will un-invent them.

While accusing J. Norris with "neurolinguistics", you also do your share of distortion. J. Norris says "Unquestioned support of Israel and the House of Saud", while you rather shamelessly distort this by converting "Israel" to "all the people of Israel". Israel is a state, whose policies need not be wholly endorsed by its citizens. Yet, the efforts of all peace-supporting Israelis and the support they give to the Palestinian cause do not change the fact that Israel is defying international law and abusing human rights every day. Besides, Israel is a state whose citizens are not exclusively Jewish, as your "people of Israel" phrase suggest. Furthermore, I am completely at a loss to how you manage to put in ALL the Jews in the world into the equation. Jewish Americans are just that-US citizens that happen to be Jews. They are NOT Israel. Or are they?

Once we resolve this huge distortion of yours, and establish that Israel is not equal to the world Jewry, it is easier to see that criticizing Israel and "unquestioned" US support of Israel DO NOT MEAN anti-semitism or supporting Holocaust.

And it borders on the edge of ridiculousness to interpret the "and" in the phrase "Israel and the House of Saud" as if the speaker tries to link the two. In the sentence, "Terrorism and avian flu will contribute to a decline in oil prices in the short term." can you claim that the "and" suggests a link between terrorism and avian flu? No! It's the same here.

Finally, J. Norris' sentence does not tie Israel (I wonder why you did not say "Israeli people" once again here) to 9/11.

A funny thing Sevket, the people who slit Daniel Perlman's throat (the first publicized beheading in Iraq) did not claim they were doing it because he was a member of the governement of the "State of Israel". Nor did they proclaim they were doing it because he was a member of the American governement. No. They did it because he was Jewish. They did it because in their minds, ALL Jews are responsible for the alleged "atrocities" of what you now claim is just this small power group separate from world Jewry, namely, the "State of Israel".

I do not recall seeing the phrase "State of Israel" in Norris's one line zinger. I do not recall seeing the phrase "Saudia Arabia" (which under your theory everyone understands to mean the State of SA). No. He went out of his way to single out "the House of" Saud in his statement and then he simultaneously went out of his way to collectively refer to the other half of his "and" conjunctive as Israel.

And if you look back you will see that 9/11 is indeed mentioned in his one liner.

Did John Norris intend anything mean by his statement? I'll take him at his word that he is an honorable gentleman who intended no such thing. However, some group of people has been toying with his mind. Implanting in it the concepts of "Israel" being on equal footing with the "House of Saud".

It is this blood libel that must be spoken of.

As I said at the start. What Hitler and all his followers did to the Jewish people in 1939-1945 is unspeakable. It started with implanting hateful thoughts in people's heads. That is why we must speak out now when 1939 is starting up all over again.

If Norrs has a right to question support for Israel, I certainly have a right to question the equating of all of Israel with the singular "House of Saud" and the tying of the concept of Israel to 9/11. All of these are intentional falsehoods.

Thank you for observing the false equation.
Most people are not engineers, or worse yet, poets to boot.
Most people do not have trained analytical minds.
Most people are not keenly conscious of the words tossed into their heads.

This is how the mind benders work.
They know how to get "mixed messages" into the multiple layers of the human brain.
They know how to push the buttons of the limbic layer with a "love life" alliteration.
They know how push the buttons of the reptilian layer with the "terrorized by terror" alliteration and the flashing code orange, code red lights.

You know better.
Most don't.
Most people are blindly manipulated by such tactics.

Just last night on TV (on PBS I think) there was a show on the biochemical and evolutionary natures of the reptilian, limbic and neocortical layers of the human brain. Most people do not know they have layers. The mind benders do.

Hi stepback, I appreciated your peaceful response to my second post. Thank you. I am no student of NLP, even though I know what it stands for. I am scared when people like Rove use NLP (and any Machiavellian strategy) to instil fear. I distrust nationalism ("patriotism is the last refuge to which a scoundrel clings") and believe it would help to see all people as our brothers and sisters, fellow global citizens. Again, I wasn't so much questioning support of Israel (although Sevket's post gives reasons to do so), more pointing out that the US support of Israel is one of reasons Bin Ladin gives for 9/11. Is your fear that the West might forsake Israel in turn for promises of no more terrorist attacks? Respectfully...


No. I fear the mind benders and the exponential growth of their poison.

Do you ever stop and wonder WHY a jihadist suicider blows him or herself up?

You don't see Osama Bin Ladin blowing himself up, do you?
Oh no. He loves life too much. (His life.)

You do not see George W. Bush offering up his daughters for "the ultimate sacrifice" do you?
Oh no. He loves life too much. (His and his family's life.)

And I suppose on your side of the pond you do not see all the hawkish PMs volunteering to go fight the bloody good fight in Iraq against the "them" --the "them" that our American Karl Rove labels as "those who hate our freedoms"-- do you?
Oh no. They love life too much. (Theirs & their families' lives.)

Instead, masses of poor uneducated young kids are "convinced" (brain washed) into throwing their bodies in front of flying shrapnel for honor and country.

It is the same on both sides of "the war".
"Their" elite brainwashes their kids into doing the jihad.
Our elite brainwashes our kids into the crusade against the jihad.
On both sides of "the war," the elite win and poor uneducated slobs die.

If you have not yet seen Michael Moore's "Farenheit 911" I strongly urge you to do so. There is nothing like seeing first hand how our brave US congressmen run like chickens when Michael hands them the enlistment form for signing up their own kids to fight the bloody good fight. Their feet talk louder than can any words.

So you wonder why I got so bent out of sorts when your sentence put "Israel" in the same camp with "the House of Saud" and 9/11 and "unquestioning" thought process. Well, it is because those suggestive, yet false concepts got planted into your head by some crafty mind benders on your side of the pond. Suddenly, "Israel" is being held responsible for Peak Oil, for 9/11 and for TTTTerrorrrismmmm. You will come to be convinced of it and you will not even know that you have been played.

Do not feel bad. We are all susceptible to being played. Yes even me. My mind has 3 layers and my wife tries constantly to pluck the reptilian male layer like a violin string. Most of the time it works. I still get mesmerized by the flashing orange and red lights on the bottom scroll bar of the Fox "fair and off-balance" news program. It works. That is why it is so scary. "They" work it like a game. That is why they are so scary. They work it like master violinists.

So now.
With the awful thing that just happened in London.
Who is/are the "them" that your mind instantly blames?

When Oklahoma City happened, most Americans blamed "them" the Arabs.
Then we quietly found out it was one of our own, Timothy McVeigh.
When 9/11 happened, we were not sure who to instantly blame.
Later we learned for the first time about the now infamous Al Quada group.

Al Quada is not Islam and Islam is not Al Quada.
Iraq is not --well was not-- Islam, or 911. or weapons of mass deception.
Yet somehow our brains got trained into confusingly mixing all those things together.

It is amazing how "mixed messages" can mix things up in you head.
So please, in the future, do not mix Israel with House of Saud or with 9/11.
Thank you.

P.S. suddenly the Brits are thinking of asking Israel for help
see the story on BBC:

P.P.S. and the blame-game is on in full force
or am I just paranoid ? (Sometimes it's true, they are after you):