News in Europe

News in Europe: Varying Degrees of Asshattery

This past week’s news has been dominated by the MH17 crash over eastern Ukraine, and yes, there is a lot to say about it, because the more you think about it, the crazier the whole story seems.

Picture this: You are a Russian-speaking person living outside the motherland. This may be eastern Ukraine, or Armenia, or what have you. You hear there’s trouble in Ukraine, and, since you are outraged about the treatment of Russians there, or maybe because you’re bored, or somebody offers you money, you decide to get that free gun and go fight a bit. It’s great fun, and you meet new friends. The free weapons get more and more exciting, and bigger. You shoot down a few Ukrainian planes, which makes for good news coverage. Somebody turns up with a big feckin’ missile. Yeah. You shoot down another plane, and oops. It wasn’t a Ukrainian one. Nevermind. You delete your celebratory tweets and the black boxes, hide the missile launcher in a car park and stand around menacingly while the world is trying to deal with something that would be horrific enough outside any war zone. It’s July, and hot, and you’ve got a whole lot of bodies that you’re reluctant to give up, because, you know, evidence, until you realize they are quite unpleasant to have around, so you can be persuaded to send them somewhere in a very slow train. You’re starting to suspect that this week didn’t exactly go to plan.

Can you picture it? I don’t know about you, but I can see several points in this story at which I would have gotten the hell out and not been quite such a monumental asshat.

Things are not looking good between Russia and the rest of the world, although I’m surprised at the general lack of WW3 panic. We’ll see.

And David Cameron? He’s found another reason to go on about “Europe,” forgetting he’s technically still a member of that club.

And because this week’s all about Russia, Britain is now opening an inquest into the death of Alexander Litvinenko, the former KGB spy who died of radiation poisoning in 2006.

Meanwhile, fortress Europe is continuing to cost lives. Another 60 people died this week — in different, but still horrific circumstances.

But hey, at least Silvio Berlusconi is back, somehow. Or will be, as soon as he’s finished inciting public unrest in his care home.

A bus crash in Germany killed 9 people, with many more seriously injured.

I need some funny now. The Queen has tested positive for morphine! Will that do?

Until next week, citizens, when I’ll be reporting live from Germany.

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