July 07, 2005

The killer without reward

Well, the inevitable has happened.

The Dance of Death between the Neo-imperialists and - we're presuming - the theocrats has come to London, much later than we might have expected. The fear is that this will presage a long, low-level campaign, justifying further pointless authoritarian measures and fuelling more anti-immigration and anti-Islamic rhetoric. And so the escalative spiral that is the ludicrous War on Terror will take another twist.

Attacking Afghanistan and Iraq was, so we were told, supposed to make the world safer but - surprise, surprise - today London faced the worst terrorist attack ever mounted in the UK. That has no connection with British foreign policy, naturally.

Throughout the day, Lenin has predictably offered the best reports and also the best place to hang out online. As he reports, Blair wasted no time before exploiting the situation, trotting out his by now embarrassingly shopworn 'so shocked and appalled he can barely speak' thespian routine (is there ANYONE who does not cringe in disgust at this now?) whilst ensuring that he made maximum political capital out of the atrocities. The BBC has rolled over, adopting Blair's claim that the G8 leaders were 'only trying to do good' as its party line. (A new unanimity that makes Saturday's unanimity all the more baffling: if that is the case, what on earth were the protests about at the weekend?)

The great and the good are telling us that we must not change policy in deference to terrorists. But why does that only apply to policies that are seen to address terrorist grievances? Surely policies which are aimed at containing terrorists - such as the detaining of suspects without trial - is 'changing policy in response to terrorist action'. What will this latest 'state of exception' come to legitimate?

Posted by mark at July 7, 2005 09:51 PM | TrackBack