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    A 7/7 inquiry?

    by Sunny on 1st May, 2007 at 3:15 pm    

    Rachel from North London says:

    To demonise a million Muslims in the media on the grounds that any young British male could without warning rise up and strike at his fellow citizens in the name of religion, is appalling. In fact, there are about 40-50 wannabe murder cells, there are about 2000 criminal plotters who would like to ape the murderers of July 2005 - so far. This is bad, but dealable with. This is a fluid and determined network of fantatic murderous criminals. To call them ”terrorists” makes them sound glamorous: to call this a ”war on terror” that means ” the rules of the game have changed” is playing into their own propoganda. They are criminals, pure and simple, planning murder and mayhem. They are beneath contempt, and a disgrace to their country and their religion.

    And asks people to sign this. There is now increasing pressure from all sides for the government to hold an inquiry. What do you think?

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    1. douglas clark — on 1st May, 2007 at 3:46 pm  

      Well, I’ve already signed it. Your chum Inayat was on BBC2 last night saying he supported it too.

      For a bit of background, Rachel North asked some time ago for people to support her claim for a public enquiry. So I wrote to my MP and got back a completely anodyne piece of Blairtastic crap.

      As Rachel North said on the same programme, there are lessons to be learned, and we need a public enquiry to get there.



      You’ll need to click on last nights programme.

    2. Ruby — on 1st May, 2007 at 4:43 pm  

      In the light of the people imprisoned yesterday who wanted to blow up nightclubs full of dancing slags I am glad, and as long as an independent inquiry does not hinder the security services then I’m not against it as long as it improves the fight against terrorism.

      As for the point of demonising Muslims, who is doing that exactly? The problem is when people used to even mention this problem, the usual suspects would say that Muslims were being demonised, but were really just in denial about the problem.

    3. Leon — on 1st May, 2007 at 4:53 pm  

      What I think? People should sign the damned petition!

    4. sonia — on 1st May, 2007 at 5:13 pm  

      Good for Rachel for demanding this and everyone else for supporting this. it’s ridiculous that a public inquiry should be considered something that is in ‘competition’ with all the other demands on the government. Rubbish!

      What next - they’ll say sorry we’re too busy because we’re emptying rubbish bins?

      And it’s silly to assume that a public inquiry means automatically we’re looking for ‘blame’ - not necessarily - that’s usually a government remit. people want to know if there is anything there to find out - how are we going to know what further questions to ask if no one will have an inquiry? And it’s very suspicious that the govt. itself should not want an inquiry - what are they afraid of?

    5. sonia — on 1st May, 2007 at 5:19 pm  

      Just like the whole 9/11 ‘oh no we won’t have a PUBLIC inquiry. we’ll have a SECRET inquiry, we’ll keep the results to ourselves, and then that way no one will ever know if we are basing future action on anything we actually found out. ‘ Oh and yeah, we’re too busy to go to war to go around inquiring..

      It’s abominable that they got away with it. I’m sorry - but when things like this happen - i think - should we be allowed to call such blatant lack of concern for what the public thinks a ‘democracy’? Treating us like we’re a bunch of idiots. Where the hell is accountability? oh hang on - we’re here to govern you people. but guess what - we don’t have to tell you anything? isn’t that nice? aren’t we clever to have got ourselves a job where we don’t actually have to do anything if we don’t want to? and we don’t have to give you any progress reports? oh wonderful..

    6. sonia — on 1st May, 2007 at 5:22 pm  

      no bl**dy wonder everyone wants to be a politician and a prime minister.

    7. Don — on 1st May, 2007 at 5:47 pm  

      I can’t remember a time in my lifetime when it has been more important to hold the security services, and the governments security policies, to public scrutiny.

      Most people are not stupid, the appreciate that there may be operational reasons why the security services withhold information or even issue disinformation. For example it was widely put about that the bombs failed to explode because the substance had degraded, now it seems the original material had been switched by MI5. I can see why they wouldn’t have wanted to tip their hands on matters such as that, at that time. But that isn’t a carte blanche to feed the public bland assurances about lessons having been learned.

      It’s not about blame, as sonia pointed out. It may well be that the current narrative - that the overstretched services were focussed on an identified, active threat and couldn’t spare the resources to follow up a couple of small time fraudsters on the periphery - is true. That actually sounds plausible to me,and if a public enquiry shows that then no-one will be calling for anybody’s scalp.

      But these people work for us, and when we ask for explanations I don’t accept a finger laid alongside a patrician nose and ‘Watch the wall, me darlin’, while the gentlemen go by.’ In fact, coming from a public servant that is mere insolence.

    8. jamal — on 1st May, 2007 at 5:59 pm  

      I dont see what an enquiry aims to achieve, particularly when the money can be spent elsewhere maintaining the public sector or on improving security strategies.

      We already know the security forces fail us as shown by the consistent rise in violent crime, and when they do act its usually on incorrect information, as we saw in forest gate and with Jean charles de menzes.

      While Rachels post shows the difference between Muslims and Terrorists, it constantly refer to Muslims and therefore the subliminal message gets accross.

      Why does she not instead highlight the recent report that points out of a total 500 terrorist attacs in Europe in 2006 was attributed to those claiming it was done in the name of Islam.

      Hence this call for an enquiry keeps Muslims in the news and fuels the moral panic about the spread of Islam, the misconceptions about the true extent of ‘Islamist terror’, and the subsequent rise in Islamophobia and racism on our streets.

    9. Don — on 1st May, 2007 at 6:35 pm  


      The security forces under discussion have nothing to do with street crime.

      ‘… when they do act it’s usually on incorrect information,’. Y’see, I don’t know that to be a fact. Usually? sometimes? I just don’t know, and the only way I’ll get to know enough to make that kind of judgement is if they are accountable to the public. Yes, they have clearly screwed up at times; I think that makes more public scrutiny a priority, rather than a waste of time.

      ‘it constantly refers to Muslims and therefore the subliminal message gets across’

      Constantly? What was it, four times in almost 1,000 words? And not once perjoratively. Having re-read her post I am at a loss to know what discussion on this topic would meet your demanding standards.

    10. Radical Muslim :: No 7/7 Inquiry :: May :: 2007 — on 1st May, 2007 at 6:45 pm  

      […] tip: Pickled Politics and The Cutting Edge «« Previous: For the people, by the […]

    11. Chris Paul — on 1st May, 2007 at 6:45 pm  

      I’m with Jamal. The security forces are in a risk business not a perfection business. They make choices based on risks. If 95 out of 100 are right that is success to a point even though five cases make them look like they’re losing.

      Operational discussions between those involved are what is needed. Not an independent public enquiry. This - operational sharing and coordinating and learning - is what normally happens in the case of major criminal gangs which as Rachel herself points out is what we’re dealing with here. They have case conferences not trial by media.

      Shall we watch gangster 1, 2 or 3? they will say, and hope to pick the shooters or the bombers as many times as possible. It takes more than 20 people to do 24/7 observation and analysis of one subject. It is not a question of not being able to empty the bins if you have an enquiry it is a question of taking experts in these areas out of circulation doing their jobs and into stuffy committee rooms and media scrutiny.

      It takes three years to train someone up for this work … so it’s not a case of clicking fingers and doubling the anti-criminal capacity of such a squad. It takes years. So losses of staff to committee work is serious. And of course there is also the risk of compromising witnesses and agents or the risk of appearing evasive in protecting them.

      Agree totally on “War on Terror” rhetoric. It’s rubbish. And terrible for those involved. But as an Irish Catholic some of whose rellies caught baton rounds and in one case a fatal bullet in Derry (and ? framed) I can say that there are no H Blocks and no internment (here at least) and considering the perceived stakes it could be so much worse than it is. Getting Gitmo closed is IMO a far more useful campaign for now.

      John Reid may have other reasons for not wanting an inquiry than the ones he’s stated - but I’m finding myself, just this once, agreeing on the basis of the public reasons.

    12. Chris Paul — on 1st May, 2007 at 6:49 pm  

      PS I’m not with Jamal on his detail. Only his conclusion that an inquiry may be inappropriate in this case. Or in this case at this time anyway.

    13. Sid Love — on 1st May, 2007 at 7:03 pm  

      I’ve signed it. So have my family, except Rishi, my son, who’s only 6 months old. He’s too young to sign it but will probably grow up to feel the effects of a society that will always regard kids growing up in Muslim families to be just a little suspect.

      Jamal, your reasons are, sad to say, short-sighted and peculiarly knee-jerk. The sad paradox is the reasons you’ve given for not having a PI are the very things that will be alleviated, should the government decide to commission an Inquiry.

      I think Muslims in Britain, and in particular the Pakistani community, need to look at the pockets of misanthropy that thrive within it.

      These people are criminals, not terrorists. Theirs is not a cause that rings true for anyone but themselves. Many Muslims go along with this malformed heroicism because of cultural, racial and perhaps religious loyalty in the face of perceived intolerance to Islam.

      Jamal offer himself as the perfect example.

    14. Ms_Xtreme — on 1st May, 2007 at 7:04 pm  

      You guys do know that America and the UK have a huge budget for counter-acting terrorist activity?

      Realistically, the funds allocated for this are not being used effectively. There’s no harm in using those to have a public inquiry of issues like this. It’s funny that those of you who are advocating that the public inquiry NOT happen, are the same people who bang on about you shouldn’t be blindly following certain beliefs people have.

      Doesn’t the same apply to what the government is feeding you? Besides, the number of people wanting an inquiry outnumber those that don’t. Majority rules.

    15. Chris Paul — on 1st May, 2007 at 7:09 pm  

      Majority rules in elections, not in between to the same extent.

    16. Chris Paul — on 1st May, 2007 at 7:10 pm  

      Actually, come to think of it it doesn’t even rule in most elections!

    17. Ms_Xtreme — on 1st May, 2007 at 7:20 pm  

      So what you proposing Chris? That the discrimination divide becomes greater than it already is by having another excuse to do it (not playing victim mentality, and not sure what kind of information the inquiry will bring forth, be it positive or negative for Muslims)?

      False information hurts society. Truth is always appreciated.

    18. Peter Turner — on 1st May, 2007 at 8:01 pm  

      If holding a public enquiry means that our security services spend more time preparing for the enquiry than doing what they are paid for i.e. security work, then I am against a public enquiry.

    19. sonia — on 1st May, 2007 at 8:38 pm  

      The Truth is Out there!

    20. lithcol — on 1st May, 2007 at 8:48 pm  

      I am not sure that a public inquiry will achieve very much. A great deal of information is in the public domain already, some of it revealed only recently. Little more is likely to be forthcoming.

    21. Chairwoman — on 1st May, 2007 at 8:49 pm  

      We may have a huge budget, but we’re sadly lacking in the personnel department. Only a few weeks ago, MI5 were reduced to advertising in The Times. The advert actually said something along the lines of ‘Do not tell anyone outside your immediate family that you have applied for these posts’.

      I am concerned about two things. The length of time a Public Enquiry would take, and the monumental cost of it. And what would the end result be? Faced with investigating A, B,C and D, but only having enough operatives to concentrate on two people, the wrong choice was made. Perhaps if they had kept an eye on Khan instead of one of the others, then 7/7 may not have happened, but the gas, electric and water installations in London would have been destroyed.

      I don’t see how that would be an improvement. A true Joseph Heller situation.

      I believe the money would be better spent on keeping the public safe in the future, rather than explaining why they hadn’t been in the past.

    22. Chris Paul — on 1st May, 2007 at 9:12 pm  

      Ms_Extreme: I’m sorry I don’t understand your point at all.

      I am proposing that :

      - there be no public inquiry at this stage
      - there be strenuous internal ‘kaizen’ reviews
      - the security staff get on with their job
      - the fact there is a risk basis is understood
      - the war on terror language cease
      - that cases are treated as criminality not terrorism
      - that closing Guantanamo is more important
      - that we do not have internment or diplock courts
      and that resisting these is also more important

    23. Anas — on 1st May, 2007 at 9:27 pm  

      GCHQ had the worst recruitment slogan of all time a few years back: Terrorists don’t descriminate, neither do we. Un-fucking-believable.

    24. sabinaahmed — on 1st May, 2007 at 10:20 pm  

      My sentiments exactly. The inquiry in the shooting of the Brazillian man produced nothing new and as you cost huge amounts of money.Even when shortcomings were highlighted, nothing happened to those who made those mistakes. I think I read somewhere that the man who did the shooting was promoted,the chief constable or the unit who mistook the man for a terrorist remained in their jobs and no one was disciplined.
      So what will this inquiry achieve? The team and the head to conduct it will be chosen carefully,and they will make sure that the remit is not too revealling. Lord Hutton `s remit was so narrow that we were none the wiser as to what actually happened.

    25. douglas clark — on 1st May, 2007 at 10:27 pm  


      “We may have a huge budget, but we’re sadly lacking in the personnel department.”

      Who is this ‘we’ of whom you speak? I think we should be told :-)

    26. Chairwoman — on 1st May, 2007 at 10:33 pm  

      Hm. Reminiscent of the late John Junor.

      ‘We’ and the Americans, according to Miss Xtreme.

    27. Kismet Hardy — on 1st May, 2007 at 10:54 pm  

      And you wonder why conspiracy theories abound…

    28. Ms_Xtreme — on 1st May, 2007 at 11:16 pm  

      Chairwoman, you’re kidding me right? The huge sums of money you talk of are budgeted to be used for such activities. And frankly, I don’t think that future terrorist attacks can be stopped - the way things are being overlooked right now. For instance, America spent billions of dollars to start this whole anti-terrorism campaign and gave state and counties large sums of money to implement a process to fight “terrorism.” Soooo why did the Virginia dude kill another 30+ people two hours after the initial attack?

      Enquiries such as this one are vital in order to understand breakdown of communication within intelligence agencies and/or delays resulting from the Big Bosses eating caviar. ;)

      How do you suppose problems get fixed if we don’t know what they are?

    29. douglas clark — on 1st May, 2007 at 11:20 pm  


      Ah, the good folk of Auchtermuchty demand an answer!

      Still, this is the text that the survivors presented to the government, when asking for an enquiry. It is that that I support:


      This is the biggest outrage to human life caused by terrorists, and folk worry about the dosh? C’mon, get real. This is the worst atrocity that has happened in the UK in recent memory, and suddenly Blair is all prudent on the costs? Pull the other one. If ever an event needed a public enquiry it is this one.

      Dunblane got one.

      Shipman got one.

      Whinash bloody windfarm got one.

      And thats a quick google.

      No. You are wrong. We need a public enquiry for the reasons outlined in the link above. Money be damned. And lessons ought to be learned, it is pointless allowing secrecy to over-ride accountability.

      It is interesting that Newsnight was able to link a lot of criminals, sorry, we know them as terrorists, together.

      I think that that is a positive thing, that they are a grouplet, if you like. Mad, but containable. That is not what you are being told from official sources.

      The idea that Mohammed Sidique Khan was acting as an independent mass murderer has been shown, by Newsnight, to be a fantasy of MI5s own manufacture. It was not true. It is actually very positive for the Muslim community in the UK. These folk are linked together in a conspiracy to kill. They are not your average Muslim, they are a gang, rather like the Red Army Faction, or the IRA.

      It is worth having an enquiry, whether it costs a hundred million bucks or not, to move our collective anger onto its’ correct target. Which is a loosely linked shower of nihilists. Albeit, frustrated young men with virgins in mind. These are the worst sort, whether they are Catholic, Protestant, atheist or Jain.

      Still, I am disappointed that you are not an ex-member of MI5. I think John Le Carre would have done you justice. And that is a compliment!

    30. pommygranate — on 2nd May, 2007 at 6:17 am  

      i agree with douglas clarke. we must have an inquiry. the idea that money is the problem is absurd. this is not a govt that has ever put the taxpayer first before.

      but im not sure i share Rachel’s description of the bombers. yes, sure they are criminals, but they are also terrorists. to deny this is to stick one’s head firmly in the sand.

      btw - is it ‘inquiry’ or ‘enquiry’ - i notice commenters seem to be split 50:50?

    31. douglas clark — on 2nd May, 2007 at 7:38 am  


      You said you disagree with Rachel’s description. I do not. These are nihilistic idiots. What Rachel is saying is that we have played their game by describing them as terrorists. It gives them a sort of kudos that they most certainly do not deserve, and is quite possibly a recruiting tool. Describing them as mentally unstable, mad, sick, etc, etc, would be a better use of language than allowing them to pretend they are the vanguard of anything other than a moral vacuum.

    32. pommygranate — on 2nd May, 2007 at 7:48 am  


      Describing them as ‘mentally unstable, mad, sick’ is certainly a better ‘use of language’ and is far more comforting for us but it is not the whole picture.

      fortunately five more ‘nihilistic idiots’ were captured before they could carry out their plan of murder.

      they are unstable, they are mad, they are sick, they are nihilistic, they are criminal, but they are also terrorists.

      Terrorism (OED) - “a. A policy intended to strike with terror those against whom it is adopted; the employment of methods of terrorizing or condition of being terrorized.
      b. Any one who attempts to further his views by a system of coercive intimidation.”

      They are terrorists. changing the language doesnt change the problem.

    33. ChrisC — on 2nd May, 2007 at 8:16 am  

      I think inquiry and enquiry are synonyms, though I would tend to use “enquiry” to mean a single question and “inquiry” to mean an investigation…

      The very fact that an inquiry is being resisted (when they are held at the drop of a hat when it suits the government) suggests we should have one.

      Hutton’s remit was tight, but we learned a hell of a lot, didn’t we? It’s just that most people came to the opposite conclusion to his!!

    34. douglas clark — on 2nd May, 2007 at 8:20 am  


      Do you at least accept that, for some, terrorist is more glamorous than school assistant? And that it has status in certain groups? Much like the glorification of suicide bombers in the I/P conflict. These folk are looked on as heroes by some. The more we can do to chip away at that, the better, I would have thought.

    35. Bert Preast — on 2nd May, 2007 at 10:44 am  

      “They are criminals, pure and simple, planning murder and mayhem”

      No, criminals do not plan murder and mayhem. They plan for personal gain. Their only cause is selfishness. The London bombings were a terrorist effort, not a criminal one.

      An inquiry would be lovely, but I don’t see how you can have a “full and public” inquiry without compromising how the security services work. Perhaps compromise is the key word here, an inquiry can be full OR public but we can’t expect both.

    36. Chairwoman — on 2nd May, 2007 at 11:01 am  

      Douglas and Miss Xtreme - I am not against an independent enquiry where the results are made public. It is the whole panoply of the hugely over-priced Public Enquiry, where hundreds of thousands of pounds are spent on photo-copying, for example, let alone huge teams of people running around holding afore-mentioned photocopies etc., that bothers me.

      As for some of the Public Enquiries that we’ve held in the past, what good have most of them done?

      The Dunblane enquiry brought in tough gun laws, but gun crime has increased exponentially, and is still increasing.

      Shipman? Yup, confirmed that he did it. Well, that was a surprise. Do you think that systems to prevent it happening again wouldn’t have been put in place without the Public Enquiry?

      Public Enquiries exist to satisfy people directly involved, and I sympathise. I know I would feel differently if I, or someone close to me had been involved. But I didn’t, and therefore can stand back and take a more pragmatic view.

      And one more thing. How secret can the secret service remain if we are going to have a Public Enquiry.

    37. soru — on 2nd May, 2007 at 11:03 am  

      @douglas: Yes, but doing so successfully requires not speaking bollocks that will be directly refuted by the personal experience of people in the relevant situation.

      You say terrorists are wierdo nutters. A potential recruit meets one and find they are actually cricket-captain, army-officer ‘jock’ types, not the guy you always suspected would shoot up the school.

      That’s not good for their future trust in things you say, or scepticism about what the guy who showed you to be wrong goes on to say.

    38. sonia — on 2nd May, 2007 at 11:32 am  

      clearly everyone and their auntie has a different opinion as to what exactly constitutes a ‘public inquiry’.

      Perhaps the first step would be for government to clarify what it is they think a [public inquiry]is…

    39. sonia — on 2nd May, 2007 at 11:33 am  

      douglas clark - 28 - good one.

      local authorities spend a fortune on photocopying and employing consultants when their employees can’t write Economic Devt. strategies on their own - should we get rid of them too?

    40. Chairwoman — on 2nd May, 2007 at 12:00 pm  

      Now Sonia,pretending to be ingenuous does not become you :-)

      Local Authorities employing external consultants saves money, as it means they don’t have to employ people full time to perform occasional tasks.

      And I think that a Public Enquiry means a Judge and teams of barristers, hiring of a suite of rooms to hold said enquiry in, ancilliary staff, payments to people who have to appear before it. Not to mention the vast amount of time these things take.

      Do we really need to spend this money to find that out that our security services don’t have the personpower to follow everybody they’re interested in? We already know that, they’ve told us. Is it in the national interest to lose the services of highly trained security operatives as they will have been outed?

      We know what went wrong, and a Public Enquiry is not going to put things right. It doesn’t have the expertise.

      The problem is that people want it to be someone’s fault. They need people to blame. Well, there already are people to blame, the people who carried out this obscene act.

    41. sonia — on 2nd May, 2007 at 12:38 pm  

      Chairwoman :-)

      im not saying a public inquiry wouldn’t cost money - but actually my point was that no one has actually set out what said public inquiry would or could involve and setting the limits and constraints of costs. right? so my point is that the goverment is not really addressing that point seriously, just brushing aside concerns, and knowing that people will argue between themselves about the costs of xyz. If we want to look at a costed proposal and then bring up those specific points - then fine. Till then, this is about government accountability, which is priceless.

    42. Graeme — on 2nd May, 2007 at 12:38 pm  

      Inayat Bunglawala, ironically, seems to be one of the main purveyors of the notion that “any young British male could without warning rise up and strike at his fellow citizens”. Maybe not necessarily in the name of religion, but certainly in the name of an outrage at foreign policy.

    43. sonia — on 2nd May, 2007 at 12:39 pm  

      And I don’t know that people are looking for blame actually - but they will be, if they feel their concerns aren’t being taken into account!

    44. douglas clark — on 2nd May, 2007 at 1:30 pm  


      Even if they speak with posh accents and are really otherwise good chaps, if they advocate bombing, they are wierdo nutters. I doubt there is much dispute about that.

    45. Leon — on 2nd May, 2007 at 1:42 pm  

      clearly everyone and their auntie has a different opinion as to what exactly constitutes a ‘public inquiry’.

      Perhaps the first step would be for government to clarify what it is they think a [public inquiry]is…

      I was beginning to think the same.

    46. Ms_Xtreme — on 2nd May, 2007 at 6:14 pm  

      Terrorism (OED) - “a. A policy intended to strike with terror those against whom it is adopted; the employment of methods of terrorizing or condition of being terrorized.
      b. Any one who attempts to further his views by a system of coercive intimidation.”

      You know that the bit in bold applies to primary school kids right? The word “terrorist” as its used today is bollocks. Anyone who terrorizes another person, whether it be once or many times, is a terrorist in my eyes (ie. someone who instills fear in person/people). As Douglas said, that’s more a criminal.

      Do we really need to spend this money to find that out that our security services don’t have the personpower to follow everybody they’re interested in?

      Again Chairwoman, the money allocated for anti-terrorist activity is enough to cover ALL of the people they have on their radar screen right now. If they’re not watching the highly suspected people, what exactly are they doing?

      Public inquiry is vital for us (the public) to understand what’s happening with our money. If I’m going to jump on the tube and get blown up because someone messed up, I’d be one pissed off chick in my grave.


    47. soru — on 2nd May, 2007 at 6:28 pm  

      ‘if they advocate bombing, they are wierdo nutters’

      Only to the extent that any soldier is (sorry Bert).

      Someone grows up dreaming of playing football for Arsenal. If they can’t get into the squad, and Millwall comes along with an offer, chances are they will take it, and spout whatever bullshit the Millwall manager tells them to, maybe come to believe it.

      Warrior is a social role, a class, just like any other. The kind of person to whom it comes naturally, by temperament or upbringing, couldn’t imagine doing anything else, could think of nothing worse than doing some job where they are working for wages instead of fighting for glory, or a cause.

      Once in that social role, you come to hold the beliefs necessary to prosper in it, no matter how strange they may seem to someone outside that role.

      You can get pretty much everything you need to understand what drives that type of terrorist from watching the first third of the incredibles.

    48. Jagdeep — on 2nd May, 2007 at 6:35 pm  

      Public inquiry is vital for us (the public) to understand what’s happening with our money. If I’m going to jump on the tube and get blown up because someone messed up, I’d be one pissed off chick in my grave.

      You’d be pissed at the security services for not saving your ass, and not the scumbags who bombed you?

      Here’s an idea, express some gratitude for all they
      have done so far to save you from being blown up, most recently this week, and then show concern about how they can be helped to learn from their mistakes both operational and institutional, to help them to stop the Jihadi terrorists.

      As for the ‘public money’ argument — well hell, that pplaies to everything, and you know that there cannot be total public transparency for operational and security reasons, it’s the nature of what they’re doing. That’s why if it’s going to happen it would have to be an independent enquiry, away from the braying hordes of ideological mobs crying for secret service blood under the guise of ‘public accountability’

      If you are concerened as well, I believe they’re looking for Urdu and Arabic translators, maybe you could help them out.

    49. Jagdeep — on 2nd May, 2007 at 6:37 pm  

      pplaies = applies

      I’m going dyslexic or something.

    50. Chairwoman — on 2nd May, 2007 at 7:04 pm  

      Jagdeep - Hello!

    51. Jagdeep — on 2nd May, 2007 at 7:08 pm  

      Shalom Chairwoman!

    52. Ms_Xtreme — on 2nd May, 2007 at 7:16 pm  

      lol. Hey hey, settle down there friend. I never did say anything about being unappreciative for what they’re doing already. I will loop back to my original argument, the funds (and now technology) is there to better monitor situations that will cause the public harm.

      Resisting an inquiry is just absurd. You can ALWAYS learn from the past. Hell, thats why we are where we are today in terms of education and technology. Closing the file on something thats so profound as murder on a large scale is not acceptable to me. I personally want to know what happened and what is the plan to make sure it doesn’t happen again.

    53. Jagdeep — on 2nd May, 2007 at 7:22 pm  

      What’s the plan to make sure it doesnt happen again? You want them to reveal that to the public? The specific details of their operational procedures?

    54. douglas clark — on 2nd May, 2007 at 7:32 pm  


      It is this pandering to a self image that is really irritating. The fact that they may have seen themselves as warriors when the rest of us see them as disturbed lunatics is essentially why everyone, everywhere, should be describing them as disturbed lunatics. Perhaps then other potential recruits would appreciate that acts of incredible barbarity and stupidity are only likely to have people cursing their very names. And describing them, in turn as, ‘depraved lunatics’ and not as the ‘warriors’ they might have hoped for. So they may come to doubt the self image they are presenting.

      As you don’t see universal social opprobrium as at least one arrow in the quiver, what is your solution?

    55. soru — on 2nd May, 2007 at 10:00 pm  

      what is your solution?

      Sign them up to our army.

      0.3% of the 100,000-strong UK army is muslim, compared to 2.7% of the population in general. That’s a shortfall of 2400 odd; more when you take class, age and income into account. That’s a lot of young men unable to pursue their vocation in life in any way other than flying off to foreign countries like Kashmir or Chechnya to find whatever scraps of work are going.

      Britain exports warriors like Poland exports plumbers.

      Add in the missing Muslim professional sportsmen, guitarists and other high-status young male occupations, and you get to pretty much exactly the size of the pool of potential bombers.

    56. douglas clark — on 2nd May, 2007 at 11:01 pm  


      Let me get this straight in my head.

      Lets leave to one side the alleged dificulty that the Army has in getting any ethnic minority troops to sign up. Lets assume that had been solved.

      Lets assume the numbers are right, and the potential terrorist threat comes from around 2500 idiots. What are we supposed to do? When MI5 identify them, they should be approached and offered a career in the Army? And this is going to work?

    57. pommygranate — on 2nd May, 2007 at 11:49 pm  


      i agree with you that calling them terorrists makes them feel better than being called crims. we should call them crims but we also have to accept that they are terrorists.

      as someone earlier pointed out, criminals are inherently selfish. i dont see what is selfish about blowing yourself up.

      Ms Xtreme - if you dont like the OED definition of terrorism, you should take it up with them.

    58. soru — on 3rd May, 2007 at 1:12 am  

      If you reduce the number in the pool, the problem becomes smaller: obviously no one thing can eliminate it.

      For example, all the way through the troubles, the royal irish rangers was recruiting. While in principle non-sectarian, in practise it had some distinctly catholic, even Irish nationalist flavour. As such, unlike the UDR, it was always excused from occupation duty in NI. Instead, it sent a lot of military-minded catholic young men off around the world to go live a life of adventure, putting the world to rights by shooting at bad guys.

      I’m not sure the army would be allowed to use the word ‘jihad’ in a recruitment poster, but it could be hinted at.

    59. Arif — on 3rd May, 2007 at 9:22 am  

      soru, I think that is very clever - reminds me of Keynes’ argument (or so I have been told) that City High Finance may not be socially constructive, but it gives psychopaths an outlet for their aggressive game-playing which would otherwise find more socially destructive outlets.

      (Nb not suggesting all city workers are psychopaths, any more than that all army recruits are, just that it is wise for societies to have ways of channeling rage and hatred somewhere outside of politics)

    60. douglas clark — on 3rd May, 2007 at 11:44 am  


      There are times I think you are the Jonathan Swift of our age. There are times when I think otherwise…

      I’m sure you’ll leave the details of your modest proposal to others.

    61. douglas clark — on 3rd May, 2007 at 11:50 am  


      The worst criminals are not the laughing cockney pickpocket, the socially inadequate shoplifter or even the criminal masterminds of comic books. The worst criminals are the serial killers, the psychopaths and the like. It is to them that I was trying to draw an analogy.

      BTW, did you write the guest post in Harrys Place? I thought it was pretty interesting.

    62. sonia — on 3rd May, 2007 at 2:14 pm  

      inquiry = enquiry pommygranate - 2 ways of spelling the same word.

    63. sonia — on 3rd May, 2007 at 2:19 pm  

      soru’s suggestion would of course have to go hand in hand with a nice bit of ‘britishness’ training…

      ‘channel your hatred on to ‘our’ common enemy’

    64. sonia — on 3rd May, 2007 at 2:21 pm  

      it’s a good suggestion of course - in as much it reflects oh-so-simply how there really isn’t much difference in National Armies recruitment and that of global well-organized terror outfits. what is a National Army but a terror outfit funded by the public>?

    65. soru — on 3rd May, 2007 at 2:46 pm  


      Easier would be to point out that it was the British Empire that defeated both the Ottoman and Moghul empires. That defeat could only be by the will of the Divine, so logically the Caliphate of the modern era is the UK.

      Just get Charles to hint he has converted in private, and find some nice Qur’anic quotes to back it up.

      Anyone who buys that argument, stick them in a uniform, and then on a troop ship to some third world country where they can live in a hut. Maybe even do some useful work while they are there.

      Same net effect as Guantanomo, except for no need to spend money on guards or wires, and with self-selecting volunteers.

    66. Sunny — on 3rd May, 2007 at 2:54 pm  

      Soru that is a brilliant idea :)

    67. pommygranate — on 3rd May, 2007 at 11:49 pm  


      i did. thanks for your comment. didnt get as mauled as expected given the extreme sensitivity of the topic. tho HP is an almost unique site in that there are hundreds of commenters who like to pick a fight with everyone no matter what is said.

      sonia - is that right? how very unusual? are there no differences at all?

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