(begin his email)
I tried posting from my google account but the Blogger site is all in Arabic and I can't work out how to do it at the moment.
I wanted to say the following so perhaps you could post it for me as Jonny?
Thanks in advance.
This is my first time posting so greetings all!
I recall sensing trouble coming since the early 2000's, but possibly earlier.
Despite reportedly being bright, I performed poorly at school and have never been interested in any of my jobs; I never felt any value in any of it.
I became disillusioned with the UK and the western world in general and moved to the Middle East in 2007.
I got my mother to sell her house in the UK and put all here money into gold bullion and cash issued by more sanely run economies in expectation of a housing/economy crash, neither of which have happened (as TPTB have not allowed it).
I have felt foolish and doubted myself at times, wondering whether things can go back to normal. I guess time will tell although I think recent events back up my feelings.
Since being in the Middle East I have experienced some serious civil unrest and thought I would share the following post I made on facebook 6 weeks back:
To all my friends:
The internet is intermittent and mobiles are repeatedly cut. I am still here, alive and well. But the situation is fucked to say the least and I am not sure how it will end.
My girlfriend and I moved out of our flat 2 days ago (for the third time in just over a month) as it's less than 1km from the main demonstration area - which was cleared of protesters yesterday morning - and we are staying with friends in a safer location. For the second time in just over 1 month the open area to the front of our flat has been commandeered by the security forces as a sort of forward operating base and sealed off with razor wire, with battle tanks and various other military vehicles inside.
As many of you know, I have always been interested in conflict and in the Middle East and now I am getting the full HD experience. I have driven through numerous illegal road blocks with groups of Shia youths wielding bats, sticks, swords and and knives to protect their villages from security forces, to more recently military checkpoints with tanks and masked soldiers with rifles in hand. Parts of the country are now under daily curfew until further notice. On our way to grab some things from our flat today we went through at least 15 army and ministry of interior check points and passed through an area that had had just seen a heavy riot with shop fronts smashed and debris deliberately strewn across the highway. So far over 300 people have been lifted in the night and are now unofficially 'disappeared'. There are other tales I could tell but I haven't the time or the space.
I will assess the situation day by day. I do not have a single friend that has already chosen to leave for good. Although I do not feel threatened - as it's a dispute between the people and their government - it is clearly unnerving.
I will post an update again soon. Until then best wishes from the front line. For some reason the sign off words of an old friend seem somewhat fitting:
Keep low, move fast.
PS: I bet those of you who laughed at me for buying ballistic body armour to bring out here a few years back aren't laughing any more!
I fear this sort of thing could be coming to more countries and regions in the near future.
Anyway I'm pleased to have found a blog where people seem to share similar views as me.
(end his email)
I responded by email to Jonny by telling him to BE SAFE!