I am extremely concerned about, and tremendously baffed by, this whole ISIS business. I am very much anti-war, but I do make an exception when it’s about protecting innocent civilians, and preserving our decent way of life.

I also love shopping in NYC, so I absolutely dread anything happening there again; and I have a school friend in DC, so that would would be terrible too. Plus, I’m so worried for my expat friends in the UAE. It’s bad enough that it’s so hideously hot there, but having this to contend with too?! Awful.

And then there’s London of course. I have friends who use the tube regularly. Not to mention what it would do to the value of our house and our rental properties in town. We are hoping that by being non-doms we will escape that dreadful capital gains tax when we sell, but if the property market takes a dive before then, that tax saving could get swallowed up : (

It’s all v worrying.

I’m also v confused about the term “ISIS”. Or IS? Or is it ISIL? I read an interesting article, but feel none the wiser really:

When I was skyping with Clara, we got talking about it, and she said some equally interesting, but equally baffling things about the situation. She was talking about the concept of “The Other” (?), and said that as humans, we like to club together in our tribes (hmmm, which tribe am I in? None! I’m in the EJ tribe!), and we subconsciously (or did she say unconsciously..?) create an “other” – like an us versus them thing.

So, according to Clara, inside each of us is our idea of ourselves and people who are like us, and then this other idea of the opposite: not ourselves and people who aren’t like us. I’m not sure I agree because I just see the whole world as one big human family : )

Anyway, Clara says that because it’s all unconscious and symbolic (?), we need something or someone concrete to make it real, “to embody that Other”, as she put it, so that we can think and take action. (That’s where you really lost me, lovely cuz!)

She says that our governments have made it concrete by doing a kind of re-branding, like a failing business might do when it’s trying to re-market itself. Clara thinks that whereas before it was Saddam, and then it was Osama, now they have re-branded the “Other” as the IS.

I dunno, Clara. I think you might be over-thinking the whole thing as usual.

I’m just glad that this time it’s not about our troops wading in and putting themselves at risk, but instead it’s about helping the poor old locals to help themselves. I know a lot of people who would agree with me on that, including people who were very much anti-war before, when Clara’s “Others” were Saddam and Osama.