Saturday, July 23, 2005

UK race relations improve no end...

Christ. The guy they shot didn't have anything to do with the bombings.

(via)

Note to anyone who looks remotely dark-skinned, has black hair etc. - if police are present, DO NOT RUN.

Wasn't it Not the 9 O'Clock News with the "Driving in posession of brown skin and tight black curly hair" sketch?

It was understandable in the circumstances, but they've still got some serious explaining to do - and nothing they say is going to get London's asian population feeling comfortable. A Sikh mate of mine was saying only yesterday that he's shitting himself every time he's on the tube - not because of bombs, but because of other passengers' reactions towards him, an asian guy with a rucksack. When he's got to be afraid of a trigger-happy policeman getting over-excited as well, it's hardly going to be a great situation...

Now imagine he was Muslim instead of Sikh, who's he going to be tempted to rally behind? The most vocal opposition. And we all know who they normally are.

Christ... Pretty much worst case scenario. Although at least they didn't kill any bystanders as well, I suppose.

Update: The man is thought to have been South American.

In other words - to indulge in speculation - olive skinned, dark haired, from a hot country so likely to have been feeling the cold (yesterday was chillier than it has been in London), and possibly not only not an English speaker, so unable to understand police instructions, but also from a region where police have a reputation for going around killing people at random.

Further update: To clarify my position, I'll borrow Tim Worstall's words (in the comments):

"I do not mean to imply that the police are racist. It’ll surprise a lot of people in the UK but it is one of the least racist countries I have ever been in. No, my point is that the shooting will increase the perception of racism by some communities and that this is something that further hatred and violence might (might!) feed off."
More comment: rhetorically speaking.., A Big Stick and a Small Carrot, Londonist, Honourable Fiend, Mayor of London Blog, Indigo Jo Blogs, and in the interest of balance, Barking Moonbat Early Warning System and Liberty Blog (since when were the Met known for being "pollitically correct pussies"? News to me...)

64 Comments:

Blogger sean said...

This is a war. People are going to die, including innocents. But why in God's name did he run from armed police, the day after four bombs went off? Poor bastard.

7/23/2005 05:48:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

...and this is the problem that they don't seem to show in the movies. What do you do when the guy you *think* is a suicide bomber makes a run for a tube train? Nothing is ever 100% sure..... Hence carrying a table leg wrapped in a plastic bag is dangerous. ....

7/23/2005 05:49:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sean,

Did they identify themselves as police - if not, he could have been running from the bunch of armed loonies. Hell, he might have thought that they were terrorists!

7/23/2005 05:50:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

Sean - I'm guessing in that part of London the guy was a dealer and bricked it. Either that or - again in the part of London - he saw a bunch of guys with guns (they weren't in uniform, after all) and assumed it was a gang thing. I know my reaction would be to leg it...

7/23/2005 05:52:00 pm  
Blogger sean said...

Yup it's a nightmare. Now we've got the worst of all worlds - Muslims will be angry, whites are already very angry, the police are trigger happy, and there's still four suicidal bombers on the loose. And I here the cricket's not going too well.
Relatedly, I see that the Guardian has 'released' is lovely journalist Dalpazier Aslam or whatever-his-name. Nice that they were employing a member of a genocidal hate-group. Indeed they asked him to pen a column on the bombs. Guess that's diversity for you.
I suspect the Guardian would have asked Goebbels to do a think-piece during the Second World War, to provide 'balance'.

7/23/2005 06:00:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

[Insert joke about you having done work for the Guardian here]

Heh...

7/23/2005 06:05:00 pm  
Anonymous TCO said...

They'll be angry now? In other words, the previous killings failed to anger them?

7/23/2005 06:08:00 pm  
Blogger sean said...

Hah yes. Call me a slapper, I'll work for anyone.
BTW I'm not quite sure this is 'worst case scenario' - that would surely have been the police showing restraint, not shooting and so letting him on the Tube, then it turns out he was a suicide bomber and he kills 50 innocent people.
I think that's worse than killing one innocent person. We have to remember that - this was the decision the cops had to make in a millisecond. Tough job, glad I'm not doing it.
So not, not worst case scenario. What we have here is a nightmare. Different thing entirely!
BTBTW, are you still sure that Vauxhall was mass hysteria? I take yr well-made point, and you are probably right, but there are still some curious and unaccounted-for eye-witness reports...

7/23/2005 06:11:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

TCO - in the nicest possible way: fuck off, idiot. That's not what was said, and you know it.

A man was shot for being dark-skinned. I'd say it's fair for other dark-skinned people to be a tad worried, wouldn't you?

Or do you think that someone blonde haired and blue eyes would have had five bullets pumped into them as readily?

7/23/2005 06:13:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

Sean - tough call, yes. And an entirely understandable one in the circumstances. I don't think any heads should roll. But there needs to be a clarification of the current firearms policy - a major clarification.

As for Vauxhall, I'm 95% sure it was nothing other than another false alarm. It was certainly - at least, judging by the available information - unrelated to the Stockwell incident. It does seem a tad odd that Kennington, Stockwell and Vauxhall all had stuff happening at around the same time though, I'll grant you that.

7/23/2005 06:16:00 pm  
Anonymous Dan said...

Yes, he was Asian. Unfortunately, Asian people will be seen as more suspicious. That CANNOT be helped. There are people carrying out crimes in their name, religion-wise- this is how it's going to be.
Anyway,

The guy was wearing some big coat.
He'd come from an address they'd been monitoring.
The police were after him.
They told him to stop.
But he proceeded to jump over the barriers, not even considering purchasing a travelcard.
He ran toward a packed train.
They told him to stop or they'll shoot. He carried on.
There are currently many suicide bombers in our capital. This guy was Asian, had an unusually big coat, broke the law, he disobeyed armed police and he jumped over the railings, what would you do?

I think they had absolutely no option but to shoot the guy.

So yes, to all muslims. Please pay your travel fares. If armed police tell you to stop, please stop. Hold on, all sensible people know this? Of course they do. Yes. This guy was an idiot, they had no obvious. The end.

d

7/23/2005 06:18:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

They had 'no choice', not 'no obvious'

7/23/2005 06:20:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

Dan - and the possibility he didn't speak English and was terrified by a bunch of men with guns not in uniform?

7/23/2005 06:20:00 pm  
Blogger sean said...

Here's a Vauxhall-ish eyewitness comment on the Beeb that you might have missed in yr assiduous round-up:
"I was on the Victoria line carriage that filled with a chemical smelling smoke after leaving Stockwell on Friday. After evacuating I stayed with police for over three hours answering questions and giving an account of what happened and they seemed to be taking it very seriously. Very few people stayed to give their accounts to police, not even the woman who pulled the emergency alarm who probably had a clearer idea of where the fumes came from."
Is it possible that a feeble chemical bomb attack was made, that has been hushed-up? I accept this is very unlikely - but perhaps not totally impossible... Crikey, am I sounding like Grassy Knoll, now?

7/23/2005 06:22:00 pm  
Anonymous Dr. Victorino de la Vega said...

FIGHTING TERROR AND BUILDING A BETTER FUTURE FOR SUNNIS FROM IRAQ TO AFGHANISTAN : THE LONDON/JENIN/FALLUJAH MODEL

“We are now satisfied that he was not connected with the incidents of Thursday 21st July 2005” says Scotland Yard, emulating the Pentagon’s steely technocratic verbiage…
After all, what’s the value of a single “disconnected collateral damage” when Tony and George are busy with grander schemes, tomahawking the Middle-East into a freedom-loving/Exxon-friendly paradise?
Coincidentally, while London’s trigger-happy policemen are busy shooting innocent British Muslims, Tony’s friend Dr Rice is back in her favorite country Eretz Israel to “facilitate prime minister’s Sharon’ work”…. I kind of wonder what that means: give him a few extra billions in US taxpayers’ money?
The true reason for Condi’s visit is that she’s eager to get a firsthand look at the Israeli Defense Forces in action while they massacre their way out of the Gaza strip: the IDF’s “Jenin model” has actually become America’s exemplary template for “combating urban Arab insurgency” and dealing with recalcitrant “terrorists” from Fallujah in the “Sunni triangle” to the southern Philippine island of Mindanao
Many Israeli and US Neocon policy makers actually still deny the fact that mass massacres ever took place in Jenin, Fallujah or Qandahar: you can hear them they say (with a Texan/Yiddish accent): “Massacre? Oh no, not again! Are you one of these wicked Islamic propagandists who try to have us believe the noble IDF/US marines ever killed innocent civilians?

Let there be no doubt about who's to blame here: bloody "Ayrabz" and other "Terroritzeem". . .

Let’s take Jenin simply for the sake of argument- but the same applies to Fallujah and Qandahar (not to mention Ryadh and Mecca which are next on the Pharisaic “pacification” list!)… Why do the Jenin refugee camps exist in the first place? They're located in "the A-zone" i.e. under the Palestinian Authority's direct rule, right? With billions in oil revenues these turbaned thugs receive from their friends in the Gulf (these decadent monarchs have spent their life “subsidizing terror”- they even financed the Gulf War...), Arafat and Abbas could have turned Jenin into a vibrant city in the middle of the desert, it could have been the Vegas of Arabia . . . But instead, they kept on inciting terror. Rummy and Ariel are darn right: “terroritzeem” simply can’t redeem themselves!

Why reject America’s visionary “Vegas in Arabia” peace plan we gracefully offered them at Camp David? After all, Native Palestinians are no better than Native Americans… Look at these nice reserves we’ve build for redskins in Oklahoma and Minnesota! These degenerates are real happy over there- lotsa casinos, and fresh beer and stuff. I know Israelis are “generous peaceniks”…the West Bank accounts for 22% of Historic Palestine, and the PA's “A-zone” for a third of the West Bank: 7% of their original homeland, that’s much more than what American Indians got.

Palestinians should thank their Hebrew masters for being so “compassionate”. I mean, our ancestors did exterminate 95% of Native Americans, that’s much more than Arike and Rumsfeld massacred in Jenin and Fallujah.
I tell ya, Israelis are simply too “gentle” (sorry for the oxymoron!) with these bloody “Ayrabz”…
They should try a little conservative tenderness instead … Yeah, that’s right “compassionate conservatism” rules!

7/23/2005 06:24:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

Hey Doc - how do you know he was a Muslim? He hasn't been identified yet.

7/23/2005 06:28:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

In fact, Doc, he's thought to be South American.

7/23/2005 06:31:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

NM: I agree with you on your point of people who are stereoptyped or suspected (but not guilty) of having a justified resentmet of that. I'm just making the point, that they should have hated the bombers. Not neutrality. Their anger against the bombers should be primal, not their feelig of victimization. That is if...they really feel they stand against the bombers. See my post in the Chapham thread.

7/23/2005 06:33:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

NM: I agree with you on your point of people who are stereoptyped or suspected (but not guilty) of having a justified resentmet of that. I'm just making the point, that they should have hated the bombers. Not neutrality. Their anger against the bombers should be primal, not their feelig of victimization. That is if...they really feel they stand against the bombers. See my post in the Chapham thread.

7/23/2005 06:33:00 pm  
Anonymous TCO said...

That was me. hit return too quick.

7/23/2005 06:34:00 pm  
Anonymous Dan said...

As you've said, Eye witnesses can be pointless as they're in such shock, but I believe many witnesses said it was a mixture of uniformed and non-uniformed police? Anyways, yeah- maybe he didn't speak English. And we can have many debates here and everywhere else, and we can come to a politcally correct decision that, y'know- nobody should ever be shot. Period. Because shooting means ending lives. That's bad. But, there was really no choice for the police here. Really. Unfortunately, many terrorists may not speak English either, but in the rush of trying to stop a suspected terrorist, we don't have time to call for an interpreter. And if we do, who will pay their fees? There's not enough time. They had no choice. It is a sad thing, and he is quite possibly innocent (at least of being linked to al quieda). But regardless, the guy firing the shots had no choice. He didn't shoot him because he's a racist who shoots Asians for fun, he did it because there was reason to believe he may be a suicide bomber.

7/23/2005 06:37:00 pm  
Anonymous 1skeptic said...

Nosemonkey said..

"Or do you think that someone blonde haired and blue eyes would have had five bullets pumped into them as readily? "

Yes, Nosemonkey, I think so. If this presumed aryan schlep was under suspicion of terrorism, was wearing heavy clothing on a hot day and legged it into a tube station after being challenged by Police on the day after a bombing.

I would be interested to know why you think differently, and if your advice would be different to non-Asians.

'if police are present, DO NOT RUN' as you have put it, sounds a bit different from 'If police ask you to stop, DO NOT RUN'.

7/23/2005 06:42:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

Dan - agreed that the guy who fired probably (from the available accounts of what happened) didn't have much choice under the circumstances. If a guy's running and you think he may be a suicide bomber, shooting is pretty much your only option.

But if this is current police policy it needs to be made absolutely clear to prevent this sort of thing happening again. And it's going to make London's asian community (not just the Muslim part) rather more wary of the police at precisely the time when we need people to come forward with information.

7/23/2005 06:46:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

1skeptic - 1) yesterday wasn't hot. I live in London, trust me on this. My missus (non-British, from a hotter part of the world) was wearing a heavy coat yesterday as well.

2) And if the guy didn't speak English and merely saw people with guns and no uniforms shouting at him?

7/23/2005 06:48:00 pm  
Anonymous Dan said...

Monkey, whilst you make some valid points, I really don't think the lines at the beginning of your blog, "Note to anyone who looks remotely dark-skinned, has black hair etc. - if police are present, DO NOT RUN." are the right words to use.. do you? It's unnecessarily provoking I think, it's like something the Daily Express would write. It wasn't simply a case of 'No running'. It wasn't like an Asian man was going for a jog and got shot down was it?

D

7/23/2005 06:51:00 pm  
Anonymous Dr Victorino de la Vega said...

We’ve really come full circle now: after having fixed fake intelligence around BushBlair’s martial foreign policy (2000-2002), after having supervised the invasion and occupation of a country that posed no threat to the West whether “imminent” or otherwise (2OO3-to that day), Israel’s Neocon “security experts” are now exporting their technical know-how in handling “dark-skinned urban insurgency”: Scotland Yard’s operatives seem to be learning real fast.

7/23/2005 06:53:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

Dan - true. Nonetheless, whereas before yesterday innocent people who could look Islamic merely had to worry about being stopped and searched, now they are also going to be worried about being shot if they don't comply. ANd there are plenty of reasons not to want to be stopped by the police other than because you're a terrorist.

Who knows, maybe we should look on the bright side - this could cut down on the drugs problem...

7/23/2005 07:11:00 pm  
Blogger sean said...

NM, wonder if you stand by your frankly bizarre post, where you said that terrorists would never come from London, coz it's so fably multicultural here and we all love each other.
For non-Londoners, these bastards have done a good job of going to ground.
But they can't be Londoners, can they, coz then you couldn't blame the bombs on the BNP?
Derr...
Sorry to harp on an old post, but I just found that cracker - you do go off on a tangent sometimes, don't you? Anything but blame Islam for its unenlightened medievalism...
Incidentally reports say that the poor dead guy was chased by uniformed and uniformed police.. so he must have had something to hide. Probably an eighth of Moroccan. And he died. Zero tolerance or what?!

7/23/2005 07:13:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

Sean - I know this will sound like I'm digging for scraps, but there's still been no statement that Thursday's lot were Muslim, and no statement that they were Londoners.

And hell, if they were from south of the river then they aren't proper Londoners anyway... ;)

7/23/2005 07:16:00 pm  
Anonymous Dan said...

I completely understand nosemonkey, but I DON'T think we all need to go down the line of 'All Asians should be afraid, the police are going to shoot you'. They're not. They didn't just open fire at a dark skinned man at random.

I think it's pretty brave of the police to step up and admit what happened, because I'm pretty sure in the past they would have found ways to hide it, but they've come out twenty four hours later and admitted he wasn't involved with the previous day's bombings.

They had no choice. And if the same situation happens again, they'll still have no choice. The guy shouldn't have run.

Meh, we're all doomed. I'm off out for a meal..

d

7/23/2005 07:20:00 pm  
Anonymous Matt Wilker said...

I agree with Dr Vic
The Israelisation of our society is a real issue

7/23/2005 07:27:00 pm  
Blogger jake-the-peg said...

NM, that South of the River comment just made me think ... maybe they are (I know it's almost too terrible to contemplate) minicab drivers!
Fewer on the tube means more in the taxis - you know it makes sense!

7/23/2005 07:28:00 pm  
Blogger sean said...

Jeepers, NM. You're still pretty unsure that they were Muslim? You don't fancy a bet on that do you? A pony on their being Muslim? Heck, I'd even give you odds.
You did see the CCTV pics, no? At least three looked kind of.... ethnic.... to me. Indeed south Asian. Maybe they were all members of a wrongly accused Hindi boy band, or maybe they are Muslim terrorists. sorry, I mean Muslim bombers. Sorry, I mean ethnic bombers with an ideology unrelated to Islam. Sorry I mean enraged Northerners provoked by the BNP. Sorry, I mean... oh fuck it.

7/23/2005 07:41:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

Sean - it's very likely, sure. But not yet confirmed. There's been a lot of leaping to conclusions over the last couple of weeks is all I'm saying.

After all, I believe it was you who yesterday asked me, after news of this shooting broke, "aren't you glad he's dead?" I wasn't then (as had he been a terrorist he'd have had a lot more value kept alive), and I'm certainly not now it turns out he was innocent.

7/23/2005 07:49:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

as a british muslim who has had his fair share of beatings from police (admittedly not in the last 10 years) for doing *ABSOLUTELY NOTHING* wrong, i can tell you that yes, YES, this makes me even more scared than before of them. and i am told i look more greek than asian but that doesn't seem to have saved me. so, though there are those who love the shoot-to-kill policy (because they are (from an aesthetic point of view) quite unlikely ever to find themselves on the wrong side of it), this is in no way a good thing when you consider how many more people this event will radicalise

7/23/2005 07:58:00 pm  
Blogger sean said...

Re 'glad he's dead'. To be fair, the Chief Constable of the Met Police, no less, did say the dead guy 'was directly linked to the incidents' - so I was, understandably I think, presuming he was 'directly linked to the incidents'. Hence my satisfaction in his being taken out to save us all.
However it turns out that it IS a monumental cock-up by the cops - albeit excusable in the circs - so you were quite right to be more tentative. I tip my cap on this occasion.
That said, I notice you haven't taken up my wager - if this isn't too distasteful - on the religion of the bombers. But its still open. Five will get you ten, as they say.

7/23/2005 08:02:00 pm  
Blogger Postman said...

One wonders what the next reasons for summary justice and public executions will be ..." He looked at me in this funny kind of way". "He had some strange tattoos and kept drumming his fingers on the table top".

"He smelt kinda funny"

"He was eyeing my bird up"

Sean " This is a war. People are going to die, including innocents."

The war of the Inoccents.

7/23/2005 08:49:00 pm  
Blogger Postman said...

One wonders what the next reasons for summary justice and public executions will be ..." He looked at me in this funny kind of way". "He had some strange tattoos and kept drumming his fingers on the table top".

"He smelt kinda funny"

"He was eyeing my bird up"

Sean " This is a war. People are going to die, including innocents."

The war of the Inoccents.

7/23/2005 09:04:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

NM,

The cousin of the Brazilian man told the BBC that he could not understand why his cousin was targeted as he "was fair skinned and spoke good English". So where does that leave your theory now? And what will the Muslim organisations find to whine about next?

7/24/2005 12:46:00 am  
Blogger sean said...

Turns out the Brazilian guy may have been an 'illegal immigrant' - hence his panic, perhaps, when confronted with police.
Given that he spoke good English, what he did was extraordinarily stupid though. And now he's died for his stupidity.
But... an illegal immigrant?? Doesn't this just add to the sense that this government has lost all control - of security, of foreign policy, of our borders? They are worse than useless. The same government that assiduously promotes multiculturalism, faith schools, laws on religious hatred - that has hollowed out core British identity, that is the government that is now reaping the result, an atomised society, breeding vipers.
Sorry but I am angry tonight. Blair has so much to answer for. Iraq may - or may not - have been a good idea, but the aftermath is a reeking mess, and he should carry the can.
And what's more - we now have the rum picture of a Labour government, of all governments, bringing about the fulfilment of Enoch Powell's words - that mass immigration would lead to rivers of blood. The ironies would be enjoyable if they weren't so bitter and appalling.
Whooh. I'm angry tonight. But a dead innocent man on a tube, fifty-eight dead in tbe morgues, four suicide bombers still not caught (and where are they hiding?! Someone must know - or someone is protecting them - in the ghettoes) - frankly, all I can say is fuck fuck fuck fuck FUCKETY fuck.
There. Feel better now. Gnight.

7/24/2005 01:09:00 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sean: But... an illegal immigrant?? Doesn't this just add to the sense that this government has lost all control - of security, of foreign policy, of our borders?

Yes, absolutely the existence of an illegal immigrant in the UK is a clear indicator that the government has lost control. Who would have thought there would ever be an illegal immigrant in the UK? How can the government not secure every entry point, every plane, every truck, every car, every jetty on every stretch of Britain's coast line, at all times? How can they not employ routine technology to scan the minds of people who enter on tourist or student visas, to see if they intend or might later decide to stay here illegally? It beggars belief, it really does. But don't blame me, I voted for Veritas.

7/24/2005 05:39:00 am  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

Where's the illegal immigrant bit coming from? From the BBC:

"Mr Menezes' cousin Mr Pereira said the 27-year-old was from the city of Gonzaga in Minas Gerais state, and had lived in London legally for at least three years and spoke excellent English."

Let's not jump to any more conclusions. In the last couple of days this guy's been accused of being a suicide bomber, a terrorist, a muslim, "middle eastern" and "asian". He was none of those.

7/24/2005 11:07:00 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm a little confused as to how this guy was identified by eyewitnesses as being 'asian looking'.
Surely the standard british label for such people is 'Latin looking'?
Or are Latin looking people who misbehave demoted to Asian status?

7/24/2005 11:08:00 am  
Blogger sean said...

I did say I was angry! - or at least tired and emotional. Check the time of my post. I also said he 'MAY have been an illegal immigrant' - this is certainly what has been reported. No, not in the Beeb - in the Telegraph, I think. I suspect something like that MAY well be true: would assuredly xplain his weird running away - either that or he hadn't paid his taxes, and thought the Inland Revenue were coming down unduly harshly.

Anyway, I stand by the moral gist of my post, if not its slightly overheated language. As howard Jacobson said in the Indy yesterday (and the Indy is putting in a surprisingly fine performance through this, unlike the Dilpazier-publishing Guardian, which is a disgrace)... where was I? Oh yeah. Howard Jacobson said - 'with multiculturalism we have disinherited generations'. Couldn't agree more - we've hollowed out Britishness, so as to accommodate other cultures, until our culture is just a meaningless jumble of behavoural tics - going to the pub, watching Jordan's breasts, laughing at the Office. No wonder some Muslims find this egregrious, offensive and desultory. Doesn't mean they're right, but you can see how their repellent views can breed.

I guess in this kind of crisis we all blame out bete noirs, with you its the Far Right, with me its Multiculturalism. I think, in fact, the two phenoemana are connected. We may be giving the same answer in different ways...

7/24/2005 11:59:00 am  
Anonymous Liss said...

Sean - have you seen the photographs of the plain-clothes police? They look like thugs carrying sub-machine guns. Good cover, of course, but I think if I saw several of them chasing me I might get a bit freaked out. I don't think this response is contingent on either my intelligence or my immigration status.

Anonymous - re: 'Asian-looking' identifications - don't you think people tend to see what they think they're meant to see in stressful situations? There were, after all, a number of reports that had the poor guy wearing a bomb belt; people 'saw' the wires sticking out of his shirt.

7/24/2005 12:28:00 pm  
Blogger dearieme said...

Me, I look Irish - due, no doubt, to a grandfather. So if I am stopped and questionned during IRA alerts, I accept it with an mindset of sweet reason. (You'll infer that my Irish inheritance is genetic, not cultural.) Why is it unreasonable to expect the same good citizenship from people who resemble the recent suicide bombers? Or do some of you hold them to be such intrinsically inferior people that they can't possibly be expected to rise to that challenge?

7/24/2005 04:29:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

dearieme - how do you get from what's been written here to that question?

It helps if you read what's actually there, rather than "cleverly" reinterpreting everything to fit your preconceived notions of what people who express reservations must be thinking.

7/24/2005 04:38:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm in the US, reading this Blog (Thanks NM!~) and I am finding I agree with just about everybody!

I'd say Doc is on the "beyond reasonable" spectrum in my view however. I do find though that I am rather glad that a spotlight is being shown on Islam as a whole. I know that the religion has factions that are obviously incredibly fundamentalist and repressive and just about everyone decries their methods and motives. I mean even the moderate Islamic clerics are being roped in to denounce the radicals by Tony Blair and his administration.

What I'd like to say about even moderate Islam however is that I find it terribly "medieval" as one commenter stated. Being a woman I look at the practice of the men-only prayers in Mosques....the teaching that women need to cover themselves for the sake of men's spiritual holiness or whatever..( women's beauty being blamed for what should be man's responbility to control themselves). This teaching, the teachings about women in this religion disturb me.

Likewise, the teachings in Orthodox Judaism disturb me as well. The women there are also not allowed to worship in the same room as men. Fundamentalist Christianity has medieval teachings about women as well. Paul, for example, was incredibly backward IMO when it comes to views of women. Too bad he didn't take a "page" out of Jesus' playbook; Jesus reportedly allowed women to hang out and listen to him teach, Mary and Martha were in the room with him...and when one sister was in the back cooking and preparing food like a good Jewish woman, he commented that the sister hanging out and listening to the spiritual discourse has the better deal.....had made the better decision.
Right on!

I view all of the Bronze Age religions as being terribly sexist and mysogynist.....and for me it is a Human Rights issue. These male dominated religions have been the cause of so much woe in the world. Not saying that they should all be turned on their heads...but could we please discontinue with the apartheid in mosques and synagogues and teach Love and compassion and spiritual equality for all HUMANS?

I have to say though, that this radical Muslim religion with its genital mutilation for women (again, have to satisfy the paranoid delusions of men that women's sexuality MUST be controlled for the sake of men's comfort level) cloistering of women, stoning of women for showing bare skin...is THE most intensely backward "teaching" (teaching of what??) to have gained hold of the human imagination in a long time. That these things still go on in 2005 is very disheartening in my view.

Maybe in the Grand Scheme of human evolution, the present scrutiny of this religion by all quarters around the globe is what is necessary to finally end these barbaric practices against over 50% of the population.

It has not escaped my notice however, that the overthrow of the secular government in Iraq has paved the way for the "new" government of Shi'a muslims who....surprise...surprise.....have written into the Constitution regressive and repressive statutes regarding women. sigh....THANKS George and Tony!

7/24/2005 05:05:00 pm  
Blogger dearieme said...

Anonymous said "NM: I agree with you on your point of people who are stereoptyped or suspected (but not guilty) of having a justified resentmet of that." It would seem that I'm not the only one who thought that was the drift that some comments were taking. Be that as it may, you could perhaps address my point. What logical construction will you put on comments that will arise all over the place to the effect that really one can't expect any more of such people but to feel resentments.... Won't it just be patronising, quasi-racist muck? Or if not racist, exactly, then involving ethnic or cultural stereotyping? One can almost hear echoes of an older generation speaking: "Brown jobs, losing their heads , very excitable, ..."

7/24/2005 05:37:00 pm  
Blogger Herge Smith said...

This won't be the last incident of this kind.

But we can't have it both ways - we can't have the PM and various other talking gobs saying our way of life won't change and the very next day innocent people (electrician - not a drug dealer) are executed in public.

What I hate most of all is how this is being reported - terrorist bomb and it's murder - people are executed. Our cops kill an innocent man and it's a shooting. It goes on and on.

Thing is, the question isn't why was the intelligence so off that he got shot - the real question is why the fuck are we under attack in the first place - and it is not about our 'way of lif' it is about our government and there actions in Iraq / Afghanistan, their ties to the US and their support of Saudi and Israel.

7/24/2005 06:03:00 pm  
Blogger Bishop Hill said...

Herge

Mr Bin Laden's gripe was with the presence of American soldiers in Saudi Arabia (no multiculturalist he!).

They're not there any more, so al-Qaeda attacks should have stopped, shouldn't they?

7/24/2005 06:38:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

dearieme - My guess is that you're taking my concerns for how the shooting will be responded to and trying to make one of those typically disingenuous leaps of Harry's Place style non-logic to make it look as if, because I have suggested (accurately) that ethnic minority communities likely to be the focus of police attention thanks to the current situation are going to be more concerned and thus more distrusting of the police following this shooting, that means I'm patronising and racist. Is that right?

If so, don't be so silly. And I'm afraid I have no interest in that kind of illogical nonsense and petty moral one-upmanship, so I'm likely to ignore that kind of thing - if that is what you're doing. It's rather hard to tell.

Herge - although I see your point, and can see the merits of it, sadly that doesn't explain the September 11th attacks - and so those who disagree with you about Iraq and Afghanistan can claim their usual nonsense.

Sadly I think we just need to all accept that the terrorist lot we're up against are mentalists - they don't need a reason to do what they do. But it might, I'd suggest, be helpful if we didn't provide them with things they can use to "justify" their actions. I mean, if someone says "we're attacking you for your imperialism" when you're not actually imperialistic, what's the best course of action? Invade and occupy two sovereign nations in a way that can easily be seen as imperialistic, or simply say "erm... we don't have an empire, idiot" and let the facts speak for themselves?

7/24/2005 07:00:00 pm  
Blogger Phil said...

"Note to anyone who looks remotely dark-skinned, has black hair etc. - if police are present, DO NOT RUN."

They were in plain clothes. I don't know how close they got to him before he ran, or what words they said (or shouted) to him. From what I've read, there is a possibility that he didn't even know he'd been accosted by the police.

7/24/2005 07:12:00 pm  
Blogger sean said...

NM, you seem to be suggesting ('invade two sovereign nations') that we shouldn't have gone into Afghanistan.
I've also heard similar bilge, to be blunt, from Islamic apologists. That we shouldn't have gone near Afghanistan. What: so we should have left the Taliban in power? After 9/11? And we should have left Bin Laden in his bases? Perfecting his dirty bombs?? Fer Fuck's Sake.
We had to go into Afghanistan. Iraq is debatable - but Afghanistan, no question.
Maybe you just hadnt thought that remark through..
BTW I've just walked through the West End - choppers overhead, tons of sirens: possibly a bomber cornered? One of the cop cars, siren screaming, pulled up right by me, then a plain clothes guy got out and hugged a woman on the pavement for all he was worth.
Bizarre. Maybe he'd just missed her a lot.

7/24/2005 08:03:00 pm  
Blogger Postman said...

Bob Crow General Secretary RMT Union

Press release 22nd July 2005

“Their concerns will have been fuelled by the revelation that an innocent Tube driver today found himself with a police gun at his head during the incident in Stockwell station in which a suspect was shot dead.

“No apology could ever be enough ever take away the trauma that that driver has suffered and there should be a full inquiry into the handling of the incident,”



Naturally press / media reports have been confused and confusing. "Official" statements have been minimal.

I saw the story that the train driver escaped from the train and ran into the tunnel and was there held up against the wall, by a highly trained plain clothes "policeman" who drawing on his extensive training, took a split millisecond decision not to pump him full of lead.

I think this driver , has like other eye witnesses, a tale to tell. Who gave the orders to delay the train ? Why ? Who gave orders to shut / open doors. Why ? Why did the driver leg it ?

Afterthouhgt - Those CCTV pics are TOO good, they look well photoshopped - single isolated. 2 days and looked at by zillions and apparently no response leading to arrest (The guys they have were said on BBC TV 7.00pm news to not be the bombers but "may have information".

Perhaps these peeps just don't exist ? Made up.

You drop stupid bombs, leg it, because it is mid - day little chance of capture ? Sounds carzy but ther IS an explanation somewhere why these 4 peeps did this together.

7/24/2005 08:20:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Strasbourg cathedral was going to be bombed by Al Quaeda on xmas 2000.

Don't fall for the Left wind/Al quaeda alliance line.

7/24/2005 10:10:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

Sean - no. That's not what I said (although I was fully aware that was how it would be interpreted, so probably should have made myself clearer). All I was saying is that neither Afghanistan nor Iraq were good PR moves.

PostmansKnock - I think that's probably a conspiracy theory too far...

For the record, I find all this terrorism blogging mind-numbingly tedious. And terrorism itself, for that matter. Next time I'm tempted to just ignore it and carry on looking at the boring workings of the EU.

7/24/2005 10:17:00 pm  
Blogger sean said...

Fair enough: you shoulda made yourself clearer on Afghanistan.

I find your remark on mind-numbingly tedious terrorist blogging a little... peculiar. Nay risible and hysterical. Nay bizarre and mind-blowing. Nay... etc etc

Your last seven or so blogposts have been on terrorism. You're getting fifty comments per post. You're becoming a star in the terrorist-blogging blogosphere. Why stop now? Every war has profiteers - you can be the one for this war!

Only joshing. But if you go back to the EU be prepared for anonymity and widespread indifference again.

I myself like to intersperse my terrorist blogs with appalling or repellent confessionals about sex and drugs. Keeps me on my toes.

7/24/2005 11:17:00 pm  
Blogger Eric S said...

Sean is correct, of course...sex, drugs and violence sell. You don't see Fox and Sky leading with stories about fuzzy wittle bunny wabbits or detailed studies of the inner workings of the EU. If it bleeds, it leads, etc etc.

I know a lot of people have tuned in to Europhobia in recent weeks because of your liveblogging of 7/7 and the post-7/7 'incidents'. What's kept many of us reading beyond the liveblogging, though, is the fact that you have something interesting to say about what's going on in the world, and you actually articulate yourself instead of just sloganizing. You've actually managed to get me to re-think a few things that I was rather sure about (for example, the wisdom of some anti-terror laws, etc). That's probably one of the higher forms of praise a blogger can get, isn't it?

Perhaps go for the variety pack. Give us some terrorism-related red meat to gnaw on, and then broadside us with a 50000 word piece about the dangers of letting Andorra join the EU. All BS aside, I think a number of your readers would probably be interested to hear what you have to say about other issues.

And now I'm off to read about what Sean did on his last drug-crazed romp through London...*shiver*

7/25/2005 02:01:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dan and other fools,

It was not a "split second decision": he was followed for 3 miles and even allowed to board a bus.
It was not a "hot day": it was cold for a summer's day.
He was not "Asian", he was Brazilian.
They did have "reason to beleive he may be a suicide bomber" but - call me idealistic - I think they need reason to beleive someone IS a bomber not that they may be, before shooting them. Are you saying it's o.k to shoot anyone who lives in the same block as a terrorist?

The worse case scenario is actually the one in which he sets off a bomb in the bus, the officers who had him under surveillance slink off home and we never find out they were ever in a position to prevent it!

The Met's statement just after shows they were perfectly aware that they were dealing with a block of flats and so knew that this may not have been a bomber.

Are you seriously saying the best way to find suicide bombers is by approaching random people, pointing guns at them and seeing if they run?!

If people can't find it in them to have solidarity with this innocent worker then they have sunk lower than I thought possible in this country.

7/27/2005 01:39:00 pm  
Blogger Eric S said...

Anonymous:
All of the comments you refer to were posted on the day of the actual event, before all of the details we know now had emerged. I'm not sure that makes people 'fools'...just about everyone was guilty of rushing to one judgment or another on that day. People were just trying to sort out the facts. Over time, they come out and even the tabloids drop headlines like "Bomber Shot on Tube" and return to more pressing issues ("Aliens stole my Elvis-look-alike Baby", etc.).

As far as the police making a 'split second decision'...well, yes, eventually it did come to that. Yes, they followed the victim for quite a distance, and allowed him to board a bus (why???), but when he was confronted by police at Stockwell station, his actions understandably led them to think there was a danger.

It's tragic and horrifying, but the events at the station are at least understandable. The real problem lies in the events leading up to his arrival at the Stockwell station...and when the comments you refer to were posted, none of these facts were available yet.

Of course no one still thinks he was "Asian", etc...and of course no one thinks it's a good idea for heavily armed police to roam the streets popping off runners. I can't recall any person (here or elsewhere) advocating that, unless of course it was in a post laden with sarcasm.

7/27/2005 04:50:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I entirely agree that the officer who pulled the trigger is probably not culpable for this unlawful killing. I do not accept that the shooting was entirely "understandable": surely armed officers of all people must be trained to be more rigorous in establishing the basis for suspecting someone.

When they originally challenged him was that to find out if he was a bomber or because they were already certain he was. If the former then the decision to shoot was not understandable but very poor indeed. If the latter then it is not true to say that a split decision was made at the station: the poor guy was dead the minute he left the house.

Dan clearly felt that wearing a bulky jacket on a hot day and being Asian would justify the behaviour of police. No new information has emmerged regarding the temperature on that day. The suggestion that the police were justified in assuming that his clothing was good evidence of his murderous intentions was just as false a few days ago as it is now.

Had Mr. de Menezes been Asian his murder would not have been justified - as Dan originally implied - but it would have made the "split second" failure more understandable. I do accept, though, that the media claimed him to be Asian in their initial reports.

7/27/2005 11:13:00 pm  
Blogger Eric S said...

I think we'll need to hear more details about exactly what transpired on that day before we can pass judgment with any certainty.

As far as Mr de Menezes' physical appearance--again, I think we'll need more information before we can truly understand this. What did the police who tailed the victim know about the appearance of the suspects? It's possible that he matched (to some degree, at least) the description of one of the suspects. If the police were working with inaccurate or incomplete profiles of the suspects, the likelihood of a false positive increases. What if his coat exactly matched that of a suspect's profile? What if his hairstyle or some other feature was a match? They might have been looking for something other than just skin tone and "Asian" features (whatever that means).

As you mention, this is where police training is critical. One of the easiest mistakes to make when you're assigned to conduct surveillance is to go into it with a set of preconceived notions. You *must* be able to think out of the box and expect the unexpected. The details you have almost *never* match reality in every way. You must adapt, or risk making critical mistakes like the false positive identification that led to the victim's death. This is a fundamental skill for anyone in law enforcement, counterterrorism, or counterintelligence, but it's also a difficult skill to master. It's certainly no excuse for what happened, but that's what I mean by saying the events are at least somewhat "understandable".

When Mr de Menezes jumped the gate and ran into the station, this would surely cause any Londoner (even trained police) to assume the worst, given the events of recent weeks. At this point I think any remaining uncertainty about his identity would be thrown out the window. Had he legged it down the street out in front of the station, instead of running *into* it and onto a train, perhaps their reaction would have been different.

The fact that he was able to board a bus still baffles me, however. I can't think of any good reason why he wouldn't be confronted before he ever approached the bus, assuming the police were in position to do anything about it. In the absence of exhaustive details about the events of that sad day, we are all forced to speculate. Time will tell, not that it will do poor Mr de Menezes any good. Perhaps we can prevent this from happening again--although the inexact science of law enforcement/counterterrorism makes me think that might be wishful thinking.

7/28/2005 01:53:00 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I take your point about his appearence and the difficulties of surveillance. That's a best case scenario I guess, if they did have some good reason to suspect him.

Some details like the bus and the pinning down and the seven bullets remain suspicious however.

If there was a genuine choice of one innocent man being killed or 50 innocent people being bombed, I know what I'd go for (though not if it was myself or a family member!). As well as this if some police officers who made an understandable mistake have to go down to stop this happening again, I know I'd throw away the key. "Tough times" rhetoric works both ways.

We'll have to wait, you're right, but I think it's important we do wait for the details and not just forget. We owe Mr. de Menezes and his family that much.

7/28/2005 02:10:00 pm  

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