This week the Walthamstow community seems to have cracked itself apart. For once it wasn't about Mini Holland, the controversial scheme to make Walthamstow Village more bike-friendly. No, this latest schism concerns something on a far less local scale - the vote on the airstrikes on Syria. And the figure at the centre of it all is Stella Creasy.
Fears of potential reprisals against Western targets if the US or Britain intervened in the Syrian crisis ignored the risk of terrorism due to the failure to intervene. Any environment hosting a vacuum of governance coupled with a totalitarian ideology that reinforces extreme poverty, serves to be a springboard for international terrorism...
Lesson One: don't believe what you read in the papers. But Lesson Two: take the long view. Labour has not suddenly become a lean, mean election machine, simply because it won a by-election in what should always have been a rock-solid seat. The party's civil war is only just beginning, and just like the war in Syria, it will be long, messy and bloody.
When you enter Syria, you have to start following all their Sharia [Islamic law] rules and pray, otherwise the khizba [police] will get you. For example, if you don't pray on time, they can take you and punish you. I told them that I did the hijra to the Islamic State, and then applied to the Sharia court to get my children back. I lived in the mosque between March and September. I could not even take my clothes off once. Nobody forces you to fight, but you do have to find a way to make a living.