Friday, July 29, 2005

Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Ian Blair is a trigger-happy psycho who wants us all dead

That's my interpretation anyway, and I'm sticking to it. He does strike me as the sort of man who, next time the terrorists strike, will sit back with a smug grin on his face and say "I told you so - we should have shot everyone in the head". (Forgetting, of course, that had he done his cunting job properly the buggers wouldn't have succeeded in the first place... Grrr...)


Blogger Eric S said...

It's all about root causes.

What is the one factor that links all acts of terror since the dawn of time?

People. No people, no problem.

7/29/2005 01:22:00 pm  
Blogger hambrough said...

Don't be so paranoid. He only wants you dead if you have a bomb strapped to you. What's wrong with that?

7/29/2005 01:45:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

Or, alternatively, if you look a bit foreign and are running to catch a tube train you've just seen/heard pulling into the station...

7/29/2005 01:57:00 pm  
Blogger David Ham said...

Even in the case of the alleged suicide bomber who the Birmingham police were arresting, I haven't seen any reports which would lead one to suspect that he had a bomb strapped on at the time of his arrest.

Is the Commissioner suggesting that all suspected bombers are to be killed even if they are not believed to be in possession of explosives?

It's also really worrying that Ian Blair is now so defensive about the Met's handling of suspected bombers that he sees fit to publicly criticise another force's tactics. I imagine he would not be particularly amused if the Chief Constable of Birmingham came out and publicly criticised the Met's shooting of that poor electrician.

7/29/2005 02:06:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Actually, I had a momentary frisson of "they're going to shoot me" yesterday.

I was in the main police office near notre dame (no, I wasn't under arrest, I was dropping off some forms) and ran across the courtyard to get out of the rain. I didn't want the documents I was carrying to get wet, so I wrapped them up in my jacket and huddled the resulting package into my chest.

I suddenly realised that hurtling towards an entrance with a mysterious bundle was not the best idea, especially when the plan vigipirate (yes, it's called that) was on red, which meant that the CRS, murderous brutal fuckers at the best of times, would probably unload their automatics into me.

Irrational reaction perhaps, but I've got a tan and very dark hair. Just struck me for a moment, so I slowed down and got wet.

I think it says something when we're more intimidated by the forces of law and order than by terrorists. The police have no punishments, and apparently, free holidays if they shoot innocents. Terrorists either die or get locked up.

If I were a terrorist I reckon I'd join the police. Spread fear and panic AND get a free holiday for killing unbelievers. Magic.

7/29/2005 02:15:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

David - to be fair, I did see a report yesterday (the Mirror, I think) which claimed that when the police burst into the guy's flat he was standing there with a rucksack and shouted out "I'll take you with me!"

Which sounds a tad too much like a bad Jerry Bruckheimer movie, but still... If true (which I have my suspicions about) it would then, I suppose, still beg the question why a Brazilian electrician with no rucksack gets shot repeatedly in the head while a (strongly) suspected terrorist already linked to an attempted bombing, wearing a rucksack which may contain a bomb and actively threatening police, gets an electric shock.

7/29/2005 02:26:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

Oh, and Katie - the only time I've ever stared down the barrel of a loaded gun (well, actually about 8 of them) was in Paris - knocking around Montmartre's red light district at about 3am, aged 16, got picked up by a squad of gendarmes, whacked up against a wall at gunpoint and fairly violently frisked. I think they thought I was a rent boy, but I don't reckon I was pretty enough. Not a pleasant experience, at any rate...

7/29/2005 02:28:00 pm  
Blogger sean said...

Guys, in the middle of your armchair policing and sitting-room sneering, perhaps you could spare a thought for the cops - in Brum and London - who are risking their lives for us right now.
Remember the policeman killed in Madrid, trying to do just this - arrest a suicide bomber.
Or have you forgotten?

7/29/2005 02:35:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

Actually, that's not quite true - I pissed around with guns a lot when I was in the school shooting team (double hard, me), but that was the only time I had a gun pointed at me which could have been fired in anger...

7/29/2005 02:35:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That police commissioner is a jackass, who got his job by kissing someone else's ass. Famous quote "You can only make as much money in the world as someone else will let you" Who said this, me.

7/29/2005 02:39:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sean, the only way, the ONLY way, to not let this whole sorry situation make me want to cry on a regular basis, is to make fun of all of it.

Now, you'd better believe I have quite strong feelings about letting the police do their job, and about them catching the bastards and locking them up. I am, of course, heart-burstingly proud of the way the whole system kicked into high gear and the emergency services and police force are doing exactly the job they trained for all their lives, and so on.

But if you can't laugh, what have you got?

Nosemonkey, yep, Paris police do not fuck about. We have super low crime rates inside the city. It means I can feel safe walking through the red light district to get home. Well, apart from all those 16 year old boys who were on the shooting team. Very dangerous, they were right to corner you.

7/29/2005 02:51:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Or, alternatively, if you look a bit foreign and are running to catch a tube train you've just seen/heard pulling into the station..."

Well, if the police try to stop you, you ignore them, and *then* start running into a subway station, jump the ticket barrier, and try to get onto a train, *then* you might have reason to be a bit worried.

The fascist bastard police appear to in the process of arresting some foreign-looking types right now. Bastards.

7/29/2005 03:08:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

PS That said, there is no way I am going to be blindly uncritical of an organisation that shot an innocent man last week.

7/29/2005 03:18:00 pm  
Blogger sean said...


I take yr point about keeping a sense of humour. But I just think that NM's statement, that the police 'should have done their cunting job properly' - was inapposite, to say the least: especially on the day when the cops are risking their lives to save us.
And perhaps it betrays that latent all-cops-are-bastards drivel that lurks inside every bleeding heart, despite what has happened this last month.
Basically, the idea that the non-arrest of these bombers, before the bombs, should be blamed on the police is absurd. Nothing to do with our lax immigration laws then? Or our inability to integrate Muslims? Or our absurd promotion of multiculturalism, and therefore atomised cultures? Or indeed our failure to crack down on radical imams? (two of these bombers attended Finsbury Park mosque).
No, it's all the fault of the police... How much more gratifying that statement is, for the liberal conscience. Compared to confronting the real issues.
Still, just heard the racist bastard murdering 'cunting' police have caught two of the fuckers.

7/29/2005 03:27:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Maybe its so obvious no one else has thought it worth commenting on, but the fact these guys have been able to elude capture so long shows up the existence of sympathisers who are more than prepared to harbour and protect these guys. Not particularly shocking in itself if you consider that for every person willing to committ suicide there are a lot more while not willing to flick a switch themselves are more than happy to help out. And its the network we really need to target. Terrorists cannot operate without support.

Oh and yeah, I wouldn't mess with a Gendarme. But I was a lot more worried by the Algerians.

7/29/2005 03:37:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

Sean - I'm very proud of the guys on the ground doing the job, and have never held an "all cops are bastards" attitude in my life, even though there has been an almighty cock-up - I'm only criticising their boss. I'm not even slightly proud of the Commissioner, who seems to have done tit all so far other than make vague pronouncements which scare the shit out of people and achieve absolutely nothing constructive. Rather than telling us that the attacks were "inevitable" (which was obvious) he should be planning ways to lessen that inevitability. He's not a politician, he wasn't elected, so he should shut up and let the Home Secretary (as much as I also despise him) explain policy and tactical decisions. Every time he opens his mouth these days he gets people's backs up, and runs the risk of alienating the average guy on the street from the police at precisely the time we should be offering the boys in blue all the help we can.

Anonymous @ 3:10 (DS?) - actually it's not entirely certain that the police DID ask him to stop, or that he ran after being challenged. But the particulars of that decidedly unpleasant incident are still not all yet known.

Chris - it doesn't necessarily mean there's a network (although it's likely there's something of the kind going on), merely that they planned in advance, stocking up safe-houses with food and the like. They've only been on the run for a week, after all...

7/29/2005 04:00:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

A very real possibility Nosemonkey. But surely their advance planning involved 72 virgins? Isn't it more likely that after they cocked up their operation they have been acting in an ad-hoc manner, relying on sympathisers?

7/29/2005 04:09:00 pm  
Blogger hambrough said...

I understand that the police had 'lessened the inevitability' many times before the 7th July. I think you might be expecting too much of the police if you think they can guarantee us protection. They can give us a high degree of protection, that is all.

7/29/2005 05:10:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's the government that hasn't been doing its job - long-term. The police are doing a mostly excellent job, especially since they're suddenly being asked to improvise on things that should have been introduced ages ago, if they were going to be introduced.

I have zero trust in Tony Blair's ability to keep me safe. What Ian Blair says really doesn't bother me.

7/29/2005 05:21:00 pm  
Blogger David Ham said...

Actually it seems that Ian Blair might have been slightly less of a pratt than the Guardian reported. The Beeb are reporting that he admitted the possibility that the Brmingham case might have been different.

Doesn't really make his comments much more likely to inspire confidence that the Met aren't operating a policy which is likely to kill people for little or no benefit.

Oh and for Sean's benefit I agree that the police officers on the ground are in a very difficult position and deserve our support. However the fact that they are in that position if anything argues against the Met's reported shoot-to-kill policy.

7/29/2005 05:22:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

Hambrough - I know the police can't guarantee us protection, but part of the role of the police is also to act as reassurance - hence the heitened presence on the streets over the last few weeks.

My complaint isn't that I want them to do the impossible, merely that by coming out and saying things (as true as they may be) which actually heighten people's fear, Ian Blair is undermining the police's ability to act as reassurance. All he needs to do is say "it's bloody difficult, but we're doing our best to protect everyone". What he's actually been saying is "we can't protect you, and we may have to shoot some of you in the head" - which is hardly conducive to either calm or public order.

7/29/2005 05:38:00 pm  
Blogger Eric S said...

Seems the Metropolitan police might not have to find the fourth bomber...this is just coming over the wires:

ROME (AP) - A Somali man believed to be one of the four suspects
in the July 21 bombing attempts in London was arrested Friday in
Rome, Italy's interior minister said.
Osman Hussain, a naturalized British citizen, was picked up by Italian police, minister Giuseppe Pisanu said.

7/29/2005 05:46:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

" "we can't protect you, and we may have to shoot some of you in the head"

Hey, that could make a nice slogan on a t-shirt or something. :P

Still, appears the cops are batting 4/4 today. Nice going.

"actually it's not entirely certain that the police DID ask him to stop, or that he ran after being challenged. But the particulars of that decidedly unpleasant incident are still not all yet known."

True - wait for the investigation, etc. etc.

7/29/2005 06:56:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

" "we can't protect you, and we may have to shoot some of you in the head"

Hey, that could make a nice slogan on a t-shirt or something. :P

Still, appears the cops are batting 4/4 today. Nice going.

"actually it's not entirely certain that the police DID ask him to stop, or that he ran after being challenged. But the particulars of that decidedly unpleasant incident are still not all yet known."

True - wait for the investigation, etc. etc.

7/29/2005 06:56:00 pm  
Blogger C. Hedges said...

I wonder what would have happened if the guy was a suicide bomber and had blown up another train. People would have been screaming about the failure of police to act.

Cops aren't going to shoot you, unless you come from an insurgent/bomber/terrorist location, run from the police, and try to get into a train wearing a heavy coat during the summer. All abnormal things to do.

People need not worry as long as they follow instructions.

If the cops say stop, stop.

Even if you've committed a crime, the punishment is usually less if you don't run. When you run, the assumption is that you did something heinous and are capable of doing it again to the police.

Deliberate Chaos

7/29/2005 08:31:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Chris - Cops aren't going to shoot you, unless:

1) "you come from an insurgent/bomber/terrorist location"

- namely an apartment building with several different dwellings

2) "try to get into a train wearing a heavy coat" - the coat has been disputed, and by some accounts was merely a denim jacket, which is hardly "heavy"

3) "during the summer" - an unseasonably cold day, even by British standards, during the summer (to the extent that I wore a jacket while cycling to work that day, and I don't feel the cold much)

4) "If the cops say stop" - no witness accounts featured the police saying "stop", and no police account to date has featured the police asking him to stop either

And if he HAD been a suicide bomber, everyone would have been convinced that the police had done everything they could and wouldn't have complained at all, because:

a) no one was aware of the shoot to kill policy

b) the police on the scene were in plain clothes and so not necessarily identifiable as such

c) were they revealed to have been present, everyone would have thought they'd done everything they could - thanks to a combination of point a) and the fac that police shootings are very rare, and therefore unexpected in this country - and so the police would have been praised for being in the right place even if they didn't succeed.

Wait until all the facts are known before making asumptions.

Nosemonkey (on a crap dial-up computer in the sticks)

7/30/2005 12:51:00 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

(Nosemonkey:) ... while a (strongly) suspected terrorist ... wearing a rucksack which may contain a bomb and actively threatening police, gets an electric shock.

The report I read (can't remember where) said he was lying on a sofa and made a lunge for the rucksack when the police burst in. If that is indeed the case -- and who knows with all these conflicting reports -- then the taser may have been the better choice of weapon.

And it would also blow a hole (unfortunate metaphor perhaps) in Sir Ian Diversity Blair's comments.

7/30/2005 01:21:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

this is typical giving arms to these thick morons the next step will be the same as other police murderers usually do they will wait a couple of years then say they are so upset that they murdered this person that could they have a golden handshake and a pension for life while the victim or their families are still left to struggle for justice with scum like ian paranoia you only have to look into very recent history.

8/19/2005 04:59:00 pm  

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