Monday, August 21, 2006

Never mind the boo

So, how's that "terror plot" investigation going? The answer is, it ain't, which is about as well as anyone skeptical of the Bush administration had expected. Via Mercury Rising comes this item:
The Briton alleged to be the "mastermind" behind the airline terror plot could be innocent of any significant involvement, sources close to the investigation claim.

Rashid Rauf, whose detention in Pakistan was the trigger for the arrest of 23 suspects in Britain, has been accused of taking orders from Al Qaeda�s "No3" in Afghanistan and sending money back to the UK to allow the alleged bombers to buy plane tickets.

But after two weeks of interrogation, an inch-by-inch search of his house and analysis of his home computer, officials are now saying that his extradition is "a way down the track" if it happens at all.

It comes amid wider suspicions that the plot may not have been as serious, or as far advanced, as the authorities initially claimed.
Really? Because that hardly ever happens. I'm sure this won't matter to the bedwetters, who seem more than happy to soil themselves every time Bush says boo!

The less-than-imminently threatening appearance of this "plot," which is beginning to take on the same fanciful aura that the Miami "aspirational" connivance demonstrated, is causing airlines now to issue ultimata to the UK government to ease the ridiculous security proceedures put in place for a plot that was never a threat to air travelers. Security officials are refusing to back down from the heightened security and, despite the fact this particular plot was nowhere near any sort of execution phase and that the plot announcement and arrests have resulted in no charges and two released suspects, these officials appear to be do nothing but saving face. In fact, as the "liquid bomb" aspect of the story is beginning to look fanciful, officials also know the timing of the arrests was a convenience and had nothing to do with the progress of the plot itself, the White House having been in argument with British intelligence about when to conduct the arrests. Arrest early, arrest often is now the operating procedure, even if it only leads to a 2% conviction rate -- convictions that are usually unrelated to terrorist activity.

Behaving like this is wholly irresponsible, reprehensible and wastes enormous time. It only stokes the fires of ethnic tension. Craig Murray calls this "harrassment of Muslims on an appalling scale." Because once the arrests are announced -- always to great fanfare -- the near inevitable aquittals rarely recieved the same attention. In fact, they don't. All the public hears is about all those Muslims getting arrested.

But the fiction that heightened security in the face of, well, almost nothing, must be maintained. I would think Brits would be getting sick of this nonsense, but, in fact, racial tension, as manufactured by these security scares, has begun to have its expected dire effects as two Asian Muslims were tossed off a plane by an angry "mob" of white people who simply demanded the Muslims be removed. There was no reason for demand other than appearance.

Meanwhile, Home Secretary John Reid continues to apply that balm that police investigation of the plot is "moving forward," and considering that many had begun to wonder why no charges had yet been issued 10 days or more after the arrests, eleven suspects have now been charged. Of course, remember the hoopla about this and then remember the convicton rate.


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