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Takin' the Freight Elevator to the Incinerator: Joe Strummer and 9/11

Photo: Bob Gruen (1981) Photo: Bob Gruen (1981)

I think you have to grow up and realise that we're facing religious fanatics who would kill everyone in the world who doesn't do what they say. The more time you give them the more bombs they'll get. Bin Laden is going to try and kill more people.

When we're all supposed to be working, a tiny cabal of my fellow Gen-Xers amuse (and depress) ourselves with daily emails about the awful music kids these days are listening to, and which sacred movies are being pointlessly remade, and which famous person we "grew up with" just had the nerve to die.

Last week, one of the "gang," Rick McGinnis, sent me a link to the quote above.

"PROOF!" Rick added. "I thought I just imagined this, but I didn't, it seems. I feel vindicated."

He'd tracked down Clash frontman Joe Strummer's immediate reaction to the 9/11 attacks.

When Strummer died in 2002, not a few conservative writers cited Strummer's comments in their obits.

I'm not sure he would have approved.

The son of a British diplomat, Strummer may not have been an authentic Charing Cross Road working class lad (any more than Bob Dylan was a real live Dust Bowl goy), but he was a lifelong Man of the Left, often to the point of colossal stupidity: