Not much has been said about the death of Rashid Rauf, an alleged terrorist, that intelligence services recently said was killed by a US strike. But I thought this article by Conservative MP Patrick Mercer (via Dave Bones) was spot on:
The world of intelligence is murky – necessarily so. There is a series of carefully enforced procedures governing the passing of British intelligence to other agencies when it might lead to the death or torture of suspects. But as Richard Beeston wrote in The Times yesterday of US operations inside Pakistan: â€œAs long as terrorist suspects… are being killed or live in fear of being killed [London] is quite happy to see the policy continue.â€ It is certainly possible that British intelligence services were in some way complicit in Rauf’s death. Our forces do informally share information with intelligence services, such as those of Pakistan and the US.
I will not recite at length the arguments about the need to operate within the law other than to cite the chaos that ensued when the world was made to believe that British Forces were pursing a â€œshoot to killâ€ policy in Northern Ireland. Clearly, martyrdom is an important tool for the terrorist and once security forces step outside the law, the advantage passes from us to them.
Not only illegal and against the values that we claim to be fighting for, but also counter-productive. Well said and the government should take note. However, I doubt that if the Tories got into power things would be very different; it’s easy to take the moral high-ground when out of power.
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Filed in: Current affairs,South Asia,Terrorism