Friday, July 06, 2007
David Rising, of the Associated Press, is puzzled. What could suspects in the London attempted bombing and Glasgow airport "fire ship" events have in common?:
They had diverse backgrounds, coming from countries around the globe, but all shared youth and worked in medicine. They also had a common goal, authorities suspect: to bring havoc and death to the heart of Britain.So what link or ideology might they share? Writer Rising isn't sure, but one clue is the suspects' names:
The eight people held Tuesday in the failed car bombing plot include one doctor from Iraq and two from India. There is a physician from Lebanon and a Jordanian doctor and his medical assistant wife. Another doctor and a medical student are thought to be from the Middle East.
All employees of the United Kingdom's National Health Service, some worked together as colleagues at hospitals in England and Scotland, and experts and officials say the evidence points to the plot being hatched after they met in Britain, rather than overseas.
- Muhammad Haneef, from India.
- "Another Indian doctor."
- Mohammed Jamil Asha, "from Jordan of Palestinian heritage," and his wife, Marwa, nationality not specified.
- Bilal Talal Abdul Samad Abdulla, from Iraq.
- Khalid Ahmed, from Lebanon.
- Two unnamed suspects "thought to be from the Middle East. . . . British media said they were from Saudi Arabia, but police refused to comment."
So the countries from which the suspects hail or may hail are India, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, the Palestinian territories and Saudi Arabia. Well, that is diverse. Certainly there's no pattern here.AP never gets there; it avoids the obvious. Tuesday's Times (London) connects the dots, admitting that, beyond being medical types, all eight also are -- imagine! -- Muslims, possibly tied to Bin Laden's bunch:
Or is there? Rising's report includes this intriguing bit of information:
Dr. Shiv Panbe, former chairman of the British International Doctors Association, said the two Indian nationals in custody were Muslims.
An al-Qaeda leader in Iraq boasted before last week’s failed bombings in London and Glasgow that his group was planning to attack British targets and that "those who cure you will kill you", The Times has learnt.New details of Britain's investigation will slow to a snail's pace--unless you learn a new language, reported the Daily Express on Tuesday:
The warning was delivered to Canon Andrew White, a senior British cleric working in Baghdad, and could be highly significant as the eight Muslims arrested in the wake of the failed plot are all members of the medical profession.
Gordon Brown has banned ministers from using the word "Muslim" in connection with the terrorism crisis.Not just politically correct, the new Prime Minister has swapped brains with Blue-state Brahman John Kerry, who compared terrorism to prostitution, as evidenced in Wednesday's NY Times:
The Prime Minister has also instructed his team -- including new Home Secretary Jacqui Smith -- that the phrase "war on terror" is to be dropped.
The shake-up is part of a fresh attempt to improve community relations and avoid offending Muslims, adopting a more "consensual" tone than existed under Tony Blair.
However, the change provoked claims last night that ministers are indulging in yet more political correctness.
The sudden shift in tone emerged in comments by Mr Brown and Ms Smith in the wake of the failed attacks in London and Glasgow.
Mr Brown’s spokesman acknowledged yesterday that ministers had been given specific guidelines to avoid inflammatory language.
"There is clearly a need to strike a consensual tone in relation to all communities across the UK," the spokesman said. "It is important that the country remains united."
He confirmed that the phrase "war on terror" -- strongly associated with Mr Blair and US President George Bush -- has been dropped.
Before Gordon Brown took power as Britain’s new prime minister, there was much talk about whether the electorate would warm to the dour, methodical and detail-driven Scot, particularly after so many years of soaring oratory from his predecessor, Tony Blair.We've seen this movie before. But we punish criminals, while we pump terrorists for intel. Mixing the two won't work.
The answer came more quickly than anyone thought, with the foiled terrorist attacks in London on Friday and at Glasgow Airport on Saturday, just days after Mr. Brown took office.
For his admirers, it seemed, Mr. Brown’s very dourness offered an antidote to the theatrical Mr. Blair.
In a somewhat wooden address to the nation on Saturday and in an interview with the BBC on Sunday, Mr. Brown played down the threat, treating the episodes as a crime rather than a threat to civilization. Yet, his minimalist approach seemed to strike a reassuring chord with Britons, many of whom had expressed fatigue with Mr. Blair’s apocalyptic view of terrorism. (emphasis added)
Bad labels make bad law. Stealthy suicide bombers aren't hookers (though women often are targets), they're dangerous kooks -- and such confusion makes the West less safe. This is a time when feel-good diversity -- the politically correct kind -- kills.
From Dry Bones Blog:
MORE & MORE:
A Brit public service announcement, from Iowa Hawk:
British public safety officials today increased the national alert level to "Quite Elevated Indeed" -- the highest category possible -- and appealed to UK citizens to "keep a sharp lookout for diverse people engaged in activities."
"We ask the public to report any behaviors by various people that may or may not be of a suspicious nature," said Lt. Clive Jameson of the Metropolitan Police Service. "We further ask the public to be especially vigilant for activities of broad stratas of people who may be from countries of some sort, especially those within the eastern and/or western hemisphere." . . .
In the latest warning, Metropolitan Police said Scotland Yard had set up special telephone and internet hotlines for citizens to report tips of possible activities by other people, including "excessive use of cell phones and computers."
"An informed and vigilant London is our eyes and ears, and our best hope for thwarting these diverse groups of people from various countries and backgrounds and occupations who are engaged in, or potentially planning activities of some sort," said Jameson. But the spokesman also said public involvement should stop there.
(via Taranto and Timeswatch)
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Yes well we must at all costs avoid the "M" word. No no, we must live in a PC world, keep our blinders on, and no matter the evidence pretend that the terrorism could come from anyone. If we do talk about "root causes", we must focus on employment, empowerment, alienation, racism, historical colonialism....
I saw most of these articles too. Nice write up.
It's bad enough that we play this PC game with terrorists in our own country, but too many of us can't recognize terrorism in the ME. Thus as Melanie Philips shows, the release of Alan Johnson by Hamas is a propaganda coup by the later. Hamas has gained legitimacy, "thanks in large measure to the willingness of the BBC to be thus used."
I think Mark Steyn has it right; it's going to be "America Alone" before we know it.