Friendship Express Rolls On

Last week, as I was doing the usual middle-of-the-night TV news network watching, the story of the train bombing aboard the Pakistan-India Friendship Express came up. Initially they called it a fire, and the details were few. I sat here, uneasy, as Im sure many observers did… that this was more than a fire and worst of all.. this was an attempt to break the peace process between the two countries.

It almost seemed typical. In my minds eye I could see India blaming Pakistan, and vice-versa.. then the train would be cancelled forever as would other travel links… and then it would be back to testing missiles and living on the brink of human annihaliation. As the next few details appeared on the television, I was already low on hope.

In fact that is NOT what happened. At least it doesn’t seem so, one week later. The Pakistani dictator-turned-president condemned the thing and vowed to keep working for peace. The Indian Prime Minister said the same. People mourned the tragedy, but in the news articles and editorials that I read, they didn’t call for blood. Which is some small way, seems encouraging.

Normally in the world, history repeats iself. Over and over. No lessons are learned, or at least, not enough lessons are learned by the people making decisions that can end or enhance human lives. Yet every now and then, I think we’re seeing an adjustment, a change. And in this case, I wonder if it isn’t a true change for the better… for peace between two longtime enemies.