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Old 12-02-13, 08:23 PM   #1
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Young Syrians turn to bikes to navigate war-torn Damascus

Just ran across this on France24. It's a bit of an uplifting article in an area where horrible things are happening. Talks about the effort to increase bicycle use in Damascus.

Young Syrians turn to bikes to navigate war-torn Damascus
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Old 12-02-13, 09:54 PM   #2
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Interesting.
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Old 12-02-13, 11:05 PM   #3
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Could it be that bicycling gets a boost in a part of the world, that doesn't have much of a culture of bicycling yet, because of an otherwise tragic situation ? Someone could probably reap profits supplying cheap utility bikes over there right now.

France 24 is a very good little news station, btw. I've been watching that instead of the American international news services since giving up my cable and it's pretty darned informative insofar as world news is concerned. I get it on my "Livestation" and the France 24 stream comes in much more reliably than Sky News or any of their other News stations since they had to stop carrying Al Jazeera on it when it became available on cable. I pay $5 a month and France 24 is about the only reason I still subscribe to their service.
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Old 12-03-13, 05:49 AM   #4
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Bicycles have long been known to be useful in war-torn areas.
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Old 12-03-13, 02:09 PM   #5
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http://youtu.be/mW9kRgQO-XE

Bicycles have long been known to be useful in war-torn areas.
This poor clip has been used for about half a dozen scenarios including the Hatton / Pacquiao fight where der fuhrer apparently had a bet on the loser on the advice of his generals.
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Old 12-03-13, 03:22 PM   #6
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There's some part of me (the survivalist) that wants to keep bikes for when the economy and infrastructure collapses.
Weird maybe, but I remember my father going through a similar phase in his early sixties (stocking rations in the basement, buying gold, etc). Anybody else thinking about these things.
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Old 12-03-13, 08:03 PM   #7
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There's some part of me (the survivalist) that wants to keep bikes for when the economy and infrastructure collapses.
Weird maybe, but I remember my father going through a similar phase in his early sixties (stocking rations in the basement, buying gold, etc). Anybody else thinking about these things.
I worry about the zombie apocalypse. Bikes will be very useful then.
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Old 12-03-13, 08:22 PM   #8
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The Onion picked up on this trend last summer.

Syrian Bike Share in Damascus
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Old 12-03-13, 09:19 PM   #9
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I worry about the zombie apocalypse. Bikes will be very useful then.

I think you could outpace these guys at a quick walk.
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Old 12-03-13, 09:22 PM   #10
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I think you could outpace these guys at a quick walk.
Old zombies maybe, but you had better be pretty quick to dodge the new breeds.
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Old 12-04-13, 08:35 AM   #11
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The simple fact remains that a bike is a fantastic way to get around faster than walking. When the infrastructure has gone to hell as in the war there, the simple bike rises to the top.

This is almost like the 1890s before the car was invented. A bike then didnt need a barn, and needed to be fed. Many people today dont know enough history to realize that the bike became the primo way to get around. This was expecially true of people in big cities that didnt have access to barns and all the needs of a horse. They could keep their bikes in their homes and apartments. Adjunct to that it was pressure from cyclist and the League of American Wheelmen that forced the developement of good roads. Drivers of today claim roads and hiways belong to them, when they are actually stealing them from cycist.
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Old 12-04-13, 08:43 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbg View Post
There's some part of me (the survivalist) that wants to keep bikes for when the economy and infrastructure collapses.
Weird maybe, but I remember my father going through a similar phase in his early sixties (stocking rations in the basement, buying gold, etc). Anybody else thinking about these things.
It's been a bunch of years since I did this, but I rode my bike to work one day because I was concerned about infrastructure failure due to one of those Southern Californian earthquakes. It seems like we are hit with a good one about every 20-25 years, (and we're now due for one of those 7 point something quakes). I wanted to ride my bike to work, just to prove that I could and would be a way to get into work in the event that the roads are closed. Only thing is that at that time, I lived sixty miles away from work and going through the city, it took four hours to make the one-way trip. I didn't make that ride again.
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Old 12-04-13, 08:53 AM   #13
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Bicycles are the cockroach of transportation. They have been here a long time and will survive everything else. To some people, they are even pests they just want gone. You heard it here first.
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Old 12-07-13, 09:11 PM   #14
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These well-to-do Damascus residents would by definition be firmly in Assad's camp. Just sayin'. (By the way, Zinger, try Canada's CBC for an anti-US slant if Al Jazeera is no longer available).
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Old 12-07-13, 10:07 PM   #15
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These well-to-do Damascus residents would by definition be firmly in Assad's camp. Just sayin'. (By the way, Zinger, try Canada's CBC for an anti-US slant if Al Jazeera is no longer available).
Lol
Some of their shows ("Empire" for example) have the slant but they were pretty informative on some things that we aren't and they have the most correspondents in the region. I'd have to say that France 24 probably covers Syria as good or better than anybody though. It's not a big outfit but they have also war correspondents in the region giving good coverage. Haven't really seen that much of US news since I gave up my cable years ago but I remember well it's own slant and shortcomings in reporting Middle East news. Even Sky News has less slant than us on some things.

Yep the well to do, entrepreneurs and Christians generally tend towards Assad in lieu of the devil they don't know. Don't know anything about Canadian TV but their lobbied politics is beginning to back up our positions in ME affairs more lately.

Really sad situation there, bicycles or not, and the fallout to their neighbors isn't over yet. Gotta be careful with this thread to keep it in here and not in P&R.
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Old 12-07-13, 10:30 PM   #16
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There's some part of me (the survivalist) that wants to keep bikes for when the economy and infrastructure collapses.
Weird maybe, but I remember my father going through a similar phase in his early sixties (stocking rations in the basement, buying gold, etc). Anybody else thinking about these things.
No but there were some mighty good deals on portable generators up here in the sticks just after Y2K.
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Old 12-16-13, 06:31 AM   #17
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I don't think very many people are noticing that our Free Syrian Army is pretty much in retreat and Saudi backed jihadists are gaining ground in this lately.
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