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Craig Murray
Writer and broadcaster

Craig Murray is standing as a candidate in the Norwich
North by-election. He is a human rights activist, writer,
and former British Ambassador, Rector of the University
of Dundee and an Honorary Research Fellow at the
University of Lancaster School of Law.

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« The FO KO | Main | About John Reid »

August 14, 2006

The UK Terror plot: what's really going on?

I have been reading very carefully through all the Sunday newspapers to try and analyse the truth from all the scores of pages claiming to detail the so-called bomb plot. Unlike the great herd of so-called security experts doing the media analysis, I have the advantage of having had the very highest security clearances myself, having done a huge amount of professional intelligence analysis, and having been inside the spin machine.

So this, I believe, is the true story.

None of the alleged terrorists had made a bomb. None had bought a plane ticket. Many did not even have passports, which given the efficiency of the UK Passport Agency would mean they couldn't be a plane bomber for quite some time.

In the absence of bombs and airline tickets, and in many cases passports, it could be pretty difficult to convince a jury beyond reasonable doubt that individuals intended to go through with suicide bombings, whatever rash stuff they may have bragged in internet chat rooms.

What is more, many of those arrested had been under surveillance for over a year - like thousands of other British Muslims. And not just Muslims. Like me. Nothing from that surveillance had indicated the need for early arrests.

Then an interrogation in Pakistan revealed the details of this amazing plot to blow up multiple planes - which, rather extraordinarily, had not turned up in a year of surveillance. Of course, the interrogators of the Pakistani dictator have their ways of making people sing like canaries. As I witnessed in Uzbekistan, you can get the most extraordinary information this way. Trouble is it always tends to give the interrogators all they might want, and more, in a desperate effort to stop or avert torture. What it doesn't give is the truth.

The gentleman being "interrogated" had fled the UK after being wanted for questioning over the murder of his uncle some years ago. That might be felt to cast some doubt on his reliability. It might also be felt that factors other than political ones might be at play within these relationships. Much is also being made of large transfers of money outside the formal economy. Not in fact too unusual in the British Muslim community, but if this activity is criminal, there are many possibilities that have nothing to do with terrorism.

We then have the extraordinary question of Bush and Blair discussing the possible arrests over the weekend. Why? I think the answer to that is plain. Both in desperate domestic political trouble, they longed for "Another 9/11". The intelligence from Pakistan, however dodgy, gave them a new 9/11 they could sell to the media. The media has bought, wholesale, all the rubbish they have been shovelled.

We then have the appalling political propaganda of John Reid, Home Secretary, making a speech warning us all of the dreadful evil threatening us and complaining that "Some people don't get" the need to abandon all our traditional liberties. He then went on, according to his own propaganda machine, to stay up all night and minutely direct the arrests. There could be no clearer evidence that our Police are now just a political tool. Like all the best nasty regimes, the knock on the door came in the middle of the night, at 2.30am. Those arrested included a mother with a six week old baby.

For those who don't know, it is worth introducing Reid. A hardened Stalinist with a long term reputation for personal violence, at Stirling Univeristy he was the Communist Party's "Enforcer", (in days when the Communist Party ran Stirling University Students' Union, which it should not be forgotten was a business with a very substantial cash turnover). Reid was sent to beat up those who deviated from the Party line.

We will now never know if any of those arrested would have gone on to make a bomb or buy a plane ticket. Most of them do not fit the "Loner" profile you would expect - a tiny percentage of suicide bombers have happy marriages and young children. As they were all under surveillance, and certainly would have been on airport watch lists, there could have been little danger in letting them proceed closer to maturity - that is certainly what we would have done with the IRA.

In all of this, the one thing of which I am certain is that the timing is deeply political. This is more propaganda than plot. Of the over one thousand British Muslims arrested under anti-terrorist legislation, only twelve per cent are ever charged with anything. That is simply harrassment of Muslims on an appalling scale. Of those charged, 80% are acquitted. Most of the very few - just over two per cent of arrests - who are convicted, are not convicted of anything to do terrorism, but of some minor offence the Police happened upon while trawling through the wreck of the lives they had shattered.

Be sceptical. Be very, very sceptical.

Posted by andrew on August 14, 2006 11:53 AM in the category UK Policy


Craig, any chance of setting up permalinks so that we can link to/bookmark individual articles?

Posted by: TimP [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 14, 2006 1:43 PM

Excellent analysis. Will link back to you shortly.

TimP: The date/time at the bottom of each post is the permalink.

Posted by: Bob Morris [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 14, 2006 3:56 PM

How silly. As a former high ranking civil servant in a former commonwealth country I can assure you that you never had "very highest security clearances" as the ambassador of a tinpot proto-republic. Your expose' or whatever you fancy it to be is the deranged mutterings of a conspiracy theorist. Grow up.

Posted by: ScottSA [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 15, 2006 3:24 AM

Perhaps ScottSA may care to put up his/her definition of 'very highest security clearances' so that we may judge for ourselves....

I have major reservations about anything and everything that 'Dr' John Reid may have to say for himself. He has a particularly unsavoury record, both in his dealings within the Communist Party of Great Britain and in his personal contact with - and admiration for - war criminals such as Radovan Karadzic. Reid is clearly a man of tremendous probity and fastidiousness.....

What we shall see in due course is that many, if not all, of those arrested will be released without charge. There will be an attempt to skew the legal process by leakage of so-called 'evidence' and Reid will, of course, not be around when this happens. Doubtless if there is any enquiry into such attempts to fix the result it will be some 'low-grade and disaffected civil-servant' who takes the rap. Have we not seen this before?

It's extremely difficult to believe in the 'integrity' of any politico, much less those entrusted with the reins of power. Whilst one recalls the great furore over 'sleaze' which attached to the Conservative government, that is as nothing compared with what we have now. Can any sane individual seriously proffer a view that this government is a model for honesty, integrity and decency? And that is to completely set aside any analysis of its ability to govern effectively.

These people are revealed for what they are - incompetent, self-seeking braggarts.

Posted by: Chuck Unsworth [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 15, 2006 7:58 AM


Plainly, you know nothing about security clearances, and I suspect you are just a troll.

With a tiny number of exceptions, members of the British diplomatic service are cleared to Top Secret. There are tiny amounts of more controlled US originated material which require additional clearances. I had all additional clearances after heading the FCO section of the Embargo Surveillance Centre (thwarting Iraqi attempts at weapons procurement).

None of which is something "a senior Commonwealth civil servant" would know anything about, but I very much doubt you are one, anyway.


Posted by: Craig [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 15, 2006 8:27 AM

Leaving aside a silly spat over credentials, you have just torpedoed your own ship here.

By your own admission the entire British foreign service has access to all of this information, and yet John Reid, the *ahem* "hardened Stalinist...enforcer" imagines that he can get away with a giant lie in spite of all these eyes on the truth?

Oh, and lets not forget Bush and the entire US state department, CIA and Secret Service, most of whom have, according to you, access to these top secret documents as well. And then there's Pakistan... How many thousands of people is Reid hoping to keep silent here in ordere to perpetuate his big scary lie? Won't he come after you for "exposing" it?

And to what end? Why would Reid want to deprive you of your civil liberties? Just because he's a nasty Stalinist? So he can turn the English into mindless automatons? Just because he feels like it? What can you conspiracy theorists be thinking when you cook up these over the top fairy tales?

Posted by: ScottSA [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 15, 2006 9:04 AM

Don't be stupid, Scott. The fact that you have sufficient clearance doesn't mean you see every paper at that clearance, whatever the subject matter.

By chance, were I still in post I would have been seeing the papers in this case as one of the suspects is an Uzbek.

You could ask the same questions you ask about the ricin plot, or Forest Gate, or Jean Charles De Menezes, or, most crucially, Iraqi Weapons of Mass destruction. When it turns out to be all lies, they ride it out. But public trust vanishes every time.

The truth is that civil servants are prepared to go along with arrant lies in the name of national security. The Iraqi WMD is the best case study. For the psychology of the process, I strongly urge you to read my book. You can buy it from Amazon.co.uk or perhaps get it from your local library.

Why do bad governments seek to amass power? Partly because they delude themselves that they really do know best and it is in everyone's interest if opposition is stifled. Partly because of the perks and buzz of untramelled power.

In Reid's case, the point is he has never believed in liberal democracy or shown respect for persons.


Posted by: Craig [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 15, 2006 9:38 AM

ScottSA said: "Leaving aside a silly spat over credentials" = he lied but he won't own up.


Thanks for this. I was already a "conspiracy theorist" which I why I heard your speech in Parliament Square the Saturday before last. I can't claim any security clearance but the whole timing of the "foiling" of the plot stank from the start. Arrests, changing airline security rules (only in the UK though?) and speeches about "Islamofascists" all in one day. An orgasmic display of state power, at its entirely inconsistent best. The state's ability to whip up emotions is a frightening thing to behold. Even crazy Doctor John is expendable in all this as soon a lightly tanned Tony will be back to mop up the mess. Thanks again, I'm off to Waterstones to track down your book...

Posted by: Lobster Blogster [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 15, 2006 11:12 AM

And with Dr Reid having so effectively shot himself in the foot/head so many times whilst the boss is away at play, bronzed Tony can step up to the mark to announce a New Deal, with freshly picked Information/Intelligence, which stands up to scrutiny, Leading the Way. .......if he is SMART SPARK enabled, that is.... au fait/turned on to CyberIntelAIgents.

There is a lot going on in CyberSpace, Craig...... and IT is all to do with Semantic MetaData Analysis of Information to render Better Intelligence. .. http://www.bbc.co.uk/dna/mbtoday/F2767105?thread=3352689&skip;=20&show;=20#p39229163

Posted by: amanfromMars [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 15, 2006 12:43 PM

Craig said: "The truth is that civil servants are prepared to go along with arrant lies in the name of national security. The Iraqi WMD is the best case study. For the psychology of the process..."

Indeed, I can sympathize with bureaucratic insularity and the herd mentality, and I know that the bureaucratic culture can be at times as enveloping and mind-numbing as any religion. I can understand how a great many people can be convinced that up is down and down is up.

But you are positing a lie of epic proportions which depends upon 100% complicity by thousands. The fact that not every piece of paper crosses everyone's desk is irrelevant; you know as well as I that a phonecall will put a folder on one's desk as long as one has clearance and a reasonable reason to see it. Are you suggesting that not one member of the bureaucracy is curious enough to investigate, and that not one member of the bureaucracy is willing to go to the press or at least leak it to a friend who is? You know very well that secrets cannot be kept, whether in or out of a bureaucracy, and certainly not secrets with these implications.

And then there is the evidence you seem blind to. The WTC was attacked and fell down. Your own underground was shattered. Attacks happen regularly across the globe and yet you willfully ignore this and concoct a plot to tell us that these attacks are a fabrication?

The West already suffers from the lies of Islam in the west. We don't need anymore.

Posted by: ScottSA [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 15, 2006 3:20 PM

It really is a case of the "government" that cried wolf, isn't it? We are expected to put our trust and faith in our governments to do what is right but when we discover that they have not been honest, that trust fades and we are all doomed to get eaten by that wolf.

Posted by: random ranter [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 15, 2006 3:54 PM

Thanks Scott, your blog response gave me a laugh. It's clear you're unable to challenge Craig here on the issues so you try to muddy the waters - attack his character. "Conspiracy Theorists" automatically assigns a negative connotation to any individual, no matter how reasonable their mindset may be.
The savage irony being Blair/Reid's terrorist scenario is the most flimsy and desperate of conspiracy theories - and you defend it! A population sick of lies, Westphalian human-rights relativism and murderous, exploitative foreign policy (along with a decline in social democratic ideals & practices) are putting a fire under these megalomaniacs and when asylum seekers aren't a big enough distraction - you come up with this fear-mongering BS. Tony, you want to end terrorism? Stop committing it!
They may think they're unaccountable (along with the propagandist media) but their time will come. How many times does someone have to lie to you before you get cynical? I expect the release of all �suspects� soon enough (though probably not for their families) followed by the media�s obedient silence.

Posted by: Damian [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 15, 2006 4:24 PM

Scott: "But you are positing a lie of epic proportions which depends upon 100% complicity by thousands."

You could have said (and, I suspect, did say) the same of every routine Keystone Kops deception up to and including Bush's imaginary "Weapons of Mass Destruction". Lies of epic proportions that require the complicity of thousands happen every year, somewhere in the world, from the left and right, from businesses and governments, advertisers and politicians, christian and muslim, atheist and fundamentalist. They're revealed, in time, sometimes sooner, sometimes later.

And nobody cares. It's too common a corruption for people to care.

Even the ones who do care won't DO anything. Most of the people reading this will nod their heads and go on, and the sum total of their engagement will be to say "yeh, Craig Murray predicted this X months ago".

Which is why they keep doing stuff like this, because they know everyone's so jaded and inured to government corruption that the loudest voices will be the ones from the people like you, the ones who for whatever reason are still deluding themselves that the fire's over there... where the guys with the gasoline-stained fingers are pointing.

Posted by: Leechman [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 15, 2006 4:57 PM

Poor ScottSA, shoots himself in the foot again. He writes:
"Are you suggesting that not one member of the bureaucracy is curious enough to investigate, and that not one member of the bureaucracy is willing to go to the press or at least leak it to a friend who is? You know very well that secrets cannot be kept, whether in or out of a bureaucracy, and certainly not secrets with these implications."
Well, ScottSA, such people are all around you. What are you doing with you eyes and ears? Bookstores are full of books written by "members of the bureaucracy" trying to open our eyes to what is happening. Craig Murray is one of these. There are many many more. The government tries to prosecute these people under the Official Secrets Act, but usually the ensuing publicity, and the attempt at prosecution itself, just 'educates' the public even further.
And more powerful than any book, there is even a grave, very sadly holding the body of a "member of the bureaucracy", who found that the only way he could communicate his truth was by suicide. What more do you need?

Let's widen this a little.
For you and I, for all of us in this country, the greatest danger of an early and violent death comes from an 'accident' on British roads. So why cannot simple improvements in road safety, like, say, a straightforward reduction in a local speed limit, be achieved in the same sort of timescale as all those huge upheavals at all our airports recently? Because a sudden change of speed limit will never scare the British public into immediate submission to a corrupt government.

Again - you and I are far more likely to meet an early and violent death on British roads, than at a British airport or on a passenger plane journey. Or on a train or bus journey. So why are hundreds, or maybe thousands, of police officers now wandering around British airports, carrying weapons that they could not possibly use in such over-crowded and chaotic places, instead of patroling the roads and treating sleepy, careless and dangerous drivers in the same sort of way that suspected terrorists are now routinely treated?

As they say..... what's really going on???

Democracy - RIP.

Posted by: ken [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 15, 2006 5:09 PM

Its instructive that everyone here flaunts the entirely discredited meme that there is some great "lie" involved with the miscalculation over WMD.

Everyone involved, from the US Democrats to the French regime to Kofi himself has stated quite bluntly that there were no untruths involved. Two joint commissions in the US and God knows how many in Britain has determined the same thing. It is widely known and acknowledged unanimously, at least in responsible circles that the WMD issue was a matter of miscalculation, and yet there is a certain subset of the population who just won't let it go. I don't know if you actually BELIEVE this nonsense or just keep spouting it out of practise, but I can tell you it doesn't help your cause.

Posted by: ScottSA [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 15, 2006 7:48 PM

Scott-To quote you
"Everyone involved, from the US Democrats to the French regime to Kofi himself has stated quite bluntly that there were no untruths involved. Two joint commissions in the US and God knows how many in Britain has determined the same thing. It is widely known and acknowledged unanimously, at least in responsible circles that the WMD issue was a matter of miscalculation, and yet there is a certain subset of the population who just won't let it go. I don't know if you actually BELIEVE this nonsense or just keep spouting it out of practise, but I can tell you it doesn't help your cause" -

You seem quite desperate in the way that YOU keep spouting nonsense. I know who I choose to believe or give credibility to and you are most certainly not one of them

Posted by: max [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 15, 2006 8:12 PM

But you are positing a lie of epic proportions which depends upon 100% complicity by thousands.

I have often heard this as the standard rebuff to any conspiracy theory. It's bull. All a lie needs is to be repeated loudly and often, in major media. All sorts of contravening documents can and do surface - but the public either never finds out due to lack of good publicity, or else such information is discredited, because it's not in the New York Times or the BBC.

If Michael Moore's Farenheit 2001 hadn't shown that footage of people egging President Bush's limo, I never would have known it happened. No major media source reported it, yet, once I did some research, oh yes, buried in the back pages of some minor local papers, there it was. No lie was necessary. See my point?

Plenty of documentation has put the results of the 2004 US election in doubt, but it never "hits" mainstream public consciousness, and those who bring it up are just dismissed as kooks...like Craig here...the result is we the public don't know whom to believe, and by default wind up accepting the word of those in power...


Posted by: falafel123 [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 15, 2006 8:14 PM

ScottSA says that the WMD was a miscalcuation. I recommend he read Ron Suskind's THE ONE PERCENT SOLUTION and Thomas Ricks' FIASCO: THE AMERICAN MILITARY ADVENTURE IN IRAQ (title might be a bit off), which show how this was not a miscalculation, unless you call Cheney's view that if there was a one percent chance that Iraq was developing WMD, then the US would as a policy matter treat that possibilty as a certainty; and if you call Cheney et al's saying there was no doubt that Iraq was developing nuclear weapons a miscalculation ... The Administration kept any doubts about the evidence hidden. They set up their own intelligence shop in the Pentagon to come up with evidence of their own because CIA was not coming up with evidence to their liking. Cheny himself visited CIA several times, obviously to pressure analysts to come up with evidence to his liking. The Administration relied on forged documents (re Iraq seeking uranium yellow cake from Niger) to sell the war. They ignored doubts that the vaunted "aluminum tubes" were highly unlikely to be for use in developing nuclear weapons.
That's not "miscalculation." It's misrepresentation.

Posted by: Brian [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 15, 2006 8:21 PM

ScottSA also makes much of Craig's saying he had a security clearance. That's beside the point, in any event, because I didn't need a security clearance to suspect immediately that this "plot" was highly exaggerated if not a complete fabrication. I almost think Craig could have left the fact of his security clearance out of his article -- it simply doesn't matter.
The real mystery is why the US-UK governments aren't claiming they are foiling plots daily.
Who are the real terrorists? Imagine living in Iraq in 2002-03 and knowing that the US was likely to get UN approval to bomb you despite that your country was not a threat to anybody. Imagine living in Iran right now, knowing the same, and knowing that the US-UK machine has created thousands of corpses already in Afghanistan and Iraq AND CANNOT BE STOPPED. The US threatens such people daily. It would be far more terrifying to live under the possibility that the US would attack with worldwide approval, and that no one would help you, than it is to live in the US or UK and know that any attack will be met with universal outrage and possibly a rock concert from Sir Paul.
I doubt the US-UK killing machine has any real compunction about killing regular American or British citizens. We should be thankful that they merely claim to foil plots ...

Posted by: Brian [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 15, 2006 8:35 PM

To cite ScottSA:
"Everyone involved, from the US Democrats to the French regime to Kofi himself has stated quite bluntly that there were no untruths involved."

Now ScottSA, listen for example to this interview with G�nter Pleuger, the former German ambassador to the UN. It appeared in the S�ddeutsche Zeitung on Saturday, August 12, 2006:

SZ: �Gab es w�hrend der Irak-Krise einen Moment im Sicherheitsrat, den sie nie vergessen werden?�
SZ: �Was there a moment during the iraq-crisis in the security council that you will never forget?�
Pleuger: �Ja, der 5. Februar 2003, als US-Au�enminister Colin Powell mit einer Diashow belegen wollte, dass der Irak Massenvernichtungswaffen besa�. Es war gespenstisch. Jeder im Saal wusste, dass seine Fakten falsch waren. Jeder wusste auch, dass der Krieg bevorstand.�
Pleuger: �Yes, Februar 5, 2003, when US foreign minister Colin Powell wanted to prove - using a slideshow - that the Iraq had weapons of mass destruction. It was haunting. Everybody in the hall knew that his facts were false. Everybody knew as well that the war was imminent.�

Posted by: soylent [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 15, 2006 8:56 PM

Soylent, do you have a link to that article, and a translation? I could really use it. Thx

Posted by: Brian [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 15, 2006 9:13 PM

The trouble is that there is a thread of dangerous reality lurking at the heart of the alleged plot, going back to 1994/95 and the bombing of Phillipine Airlines Flight 434.

Briefly, a small bomb was assembled on the plane, using nitroglycerin in a bottle apparenly of contact lens cleaner, a gimmicked digital watch as timer, an external battery, and an improvised detonator. (I'm not sure that "improvised" is quite the right word here.)

The security response at airports would have stopped such a scheme. The ban on liquids also occurred in the USA. But nobody bothered to do anything about the risk for all those years after somebody made the method work.

The timing, and the way the news has been used by politicians in the USA, stinks.

Posted by: DaveBell [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 15, 2006 9:45 PM

The Media here in Switzerland were not very hot on this piece of news. One could smell miles away that the whole matter had something fishy about it. I used to be a friend of Israel, Bush made me change my mind. Truly a powerful person I must say!

Posted by: EkoLogic [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 15, 2006 10:10 PM

It was another false-flag operation (like 9/11) setting up patsies. As the US gov't creates fear, it clamps down on rights at home by caging protestors, stealing private lands, banning books like "America Deceived" from Amazon, illegaly wire-tapping phones and starting 2 illegal wars based on lies. Soon, another 9/11 will occur (with nukes) and the scared masses will beg for the 'safety' of One World Gov't.

Last link (before Google Books caves to pressure and drops the title):

Posted by: Reader11722 [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 15, 2006 10:43 PM

This is insane. Bush wants "one world government? When he is lambasted by the left for trying to achieve precisely the opposite? Where are your brains at people? Do you realize that there is far more chance of Martians directing earthly affairs than even half of what you are positing being true?

Is anybody other than Craig willing to stand here and tell me, in the face of the glaring obvious fact of terror plots around the world and Mullahs hither and yon howling to take credit for them, that the whole terror thing is a fabrication?

Posted by: ScottSA [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 15, 2006 10:50 PM

I cited from the print version, but i looked it up and there's also one online. It constist of three pages, the relevant part is here.

sorry, i think there's no translation available, the bit on this page i did on my own.

Posted by: soylent [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 15, 2006 11:04 PM

you can try it with google, altough it's not that well:

Posted by: soylent [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 15, 2006 11:10 PM

Regarding the translation :

You can find it the article here with options to 8 different languages (top-right corner)


With many thanks to Mr. Murray
Shahram Vahdany

Posted by: MWC_news [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 16, 2006 1:36 AM

Hello ScottSA I've read the whole blog for Aug. 14 and 15. It seems to me that you try to make the facts conform to your aspirations instead of making your aspirations conform to the facts. When you counter it would be nice if you gave a source reference to the opposing argument. Here are a list of books that I have recently read that all support the desire of the Bush administration to get into Iraq before 9/11 occurred; Petrodollar Warfare by William Clarke, Hegemony Or Survival by Noam Chomsky, and Future:Tense by Gwynne Dyer. On top of that William Clarke in Petrodollar Warfare(page 14) makes reference to the first National Security Council meeting in January 2001 where both the former US Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill(The Price of Loyalty) and Richard Clarke(Against All Enemies) confirmed the Bush administration's desire to invade Iraq.

Posted by: Jeff [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 16, 2006 2:26 AM

Hi Craig,

I was immensely proud that I got the chance to help out on your campaign in Blackburn, as well as dragging my friends into it. Although we didn't get to talk as much as I'd hoped, I have found your book incredibly interesting, and have enjoyed putting your perspective to many of the Labour students at Uni now I have started studying full time.

I couldn't agree with your analysis more. Before I had read your piece I had read elsewhere that the "suspects" had no plane tickets, and that this as well as other evidence raised questions about the imminence of this attack. Whilst I fully accept that this is a plausable terrorist plan, it seems pretty obvious that we were not about to see planes exploding in the next few days. The massive media hype about this incident raises serious questions.

You should feel lucky to not still be up here. Even the people who you would expect to be most appalled by your memories from Uzbekistan seem to be relatively unaffected by the stories. There are of course exceptions, and I hope they will remember this in their future political activity, but their numbers are sadly few.

Believe me that next time I get the chance to meet the Leader of the House, Mr Jack Straw MP I will be asking him what exactly his quote describing you as an "embarassment" referred to. I just finished the "Murder in Samarkand" chapter of your book and I am amazed you managed to keep any semblance of sanity after experiencing such horrific times. Good luck with your future and I hope to talk to you again.

Posted by: DanRat [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 16, 2006 2:27 AM

As DaveBell pointed out, the timing of the huge "terror arrest" in Britan and the resulting harrassement of hapless US airline passengers was quite suspect.

However, there is something that neither Mr. Murray nor anyone else on this comment thread mentioned: The victory of Ned Lamont over Joe Lieberman in Connecticut. Didn't anyone notice that all this hoo-hah occured *the day after* Mr. Lamont's win?

Equally suspicious is the interview that the usually press shy Vice President gave the very next day:

"As the Mideast sits on the brink of regional war, Vice President Dick Cheney spent his time yesterday holding a teleconference to discuss the outcome of the Democratic Senate primary in Connecticut.

Cheney said that to 'purge a man like Joe Lieberman� was �of concern, especially over the issue of Joe�s support with respect to national efforts in the global war on terror.'"

He also went on to evoke the name that is supposed to strike fear in the hearts of all who hear it: Al Qaeda.

You can read the article here (with a link to the transcript of the interview) here:

Posted by: Uneasy [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 16, 2006 3:54 AM

Interesting thread. A bit sad to see the usual spider-hole mindsets here (ScottS) babbling status quo talking points chapter and verse. In my estimation, such types are stunningly ignorant of real history. Thus MSM brainwashed, they prefer to remain the sleepwalking sheep they depict. In any case, shaking sandbox worldviews of this kind tends to be pointless.

That said, I would take exception to Craig�s statement:

�Why do bad governments seek to amass power? Partly because they delude themselves that they really do know best and it is in everyone's interest if opposition is stifled. Partly because of the perks and buzz of untramelled power. In Reid's case, the point is he has never believed in liberal democracy or shown respect for persons.�

But it isn�t so much �bad governments� as bad theatre.

�Bad governments� and their MSM have usually been toy poodles for a freeloading cartel elite that has repeatedly hijacked global affairs thru surrogates. In England such policy was traditionally enforced from �the City� and in the U.S. from New York. In either case, the policies foisted do involve mid management poseurs such as rodeo clown GW, Cheney, Blair and Reid.

There doesn�t seem to be much �delusion� here except from those targeted as objects of agitprop and Orwellian MSM image control. A program that produces one duped public that pays the costs of war in blood and treasure for private riches. For in the end, once you get into someone�s head thru psyops, you essentially own them.

So we have 911 cover-up, bogus �war on terror� and most of DC in bed with the mega-corrupt House of Saud complete with its Bin Laden clan that remains the primary funder of al-Qaeda (not to mention the Islamic Brotherhood).

The reality is an entire DC-MSM-UK puppet complex tends to come off as bad theatre meant to impress good little sheep a la ScottS. Hence do we get a national culture of willful suckers that cling to the wholesale nonsense as desperately as a smack addict to a dealer and the next fix.

Posted by: native [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 16, 2006 4:05 AM

scottsa about this "great lie" I think that we have to remember that Dick Cheney was in the Nixon administration here in the usa, and if there's one thing he leanred, watching nixon ruin his presidency and then watch reagan save his, it's that if a president can say "I do not know" and "I can not remember" to an illegal action or lie, he will not be blamed by the american public.

So, there's this Weapons of Mass Destruction lie. Now the thing is, there is a certainty that George W. Bush believed it. He was always told that the best intelligence said that Iraq had them, he was never told otherwise. This is part of a deliberate bubble by Cheney and others to insulate the president from harm. Cheney himself, now he didn't care if it was a lie or not. So, I think give credit where credit is due, Cheney can be blamed for propogating a lie. How about the CIA, who lied there? Certainly the CIA had every type of report, if the president had bothered to read them all, he could have known the truth. You can't blame the CIA for lying.

When the whole muddle is sorted out, it ends up that there is nobody you can blame. Those in the decision making process those in the public eye, were innoculated against possible future action by being kept in a bubble.

Running a presidency like this makes as much sense in a modern world as making sure that you shred your old bank statements before you throw them in the trash. Once an administration has decided on a course of action, learning more than it needs to only makes it culpable. This by the way is the same reason that ever since Richard Nixon, Presidents have not taped their own telephone conversations or meetings. President Johnson did it, Nixon did it, JFK did it, but you just can't keep around records of things which can possible show you to be culpable of any actions.

It's all about plausible deniability. So, so expect that a commission would ever find fault is ridiculous. Of course ever investigation will prove that the whole WMD fiasco was a "miscalculation".

By the way, I'm saying this is how our presidency operates about everything, not just WMDs. You'll find no tape recordings of President Bush talking to intelligence officers, period. You won't even hear him talking to agricultural experts about whether or not we have enough corn. It's just the smart way to run a presidency.

Posted by: bonerici [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 16, 2006 5:21 AM

Native, I suggest you take a look at my blog before pigeonholing me in the blithely silly way you did. You might notice, way down below your elevated probiscus, that I am not exactly a follower of the MSM. I do admit however to not being in your camp; one which seems to follow a reductionist mode of thought which tosses everything unrestrictively into a plot meme and elevates it, in spite of a lack of even a shred of proof, to some high TRVTH. How silly.

Posted by: ScottSA [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 16, 2006 5:21 AM

Scott Stupid Ass wrote:

"Oh, and lets not forget Bush and the entire US state department, CIA and Secret Service, most of whom have, according to you, access to these top secret documents as well."


Two things here:

First, Bush and the US State Department and the CIA have no credibility here. None. Zero. Nada.

Second, the Secret Service is not an intelligence agency. Not in any way, shape, or form. If Scotty-Poo knew anything at all about such things, he would know this.

These two things clearly establish that he is an utter fool at best, but most likely just a LIAR, the same as the liars he is defending.

Posted by: Biff Usually [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 16, 2006 7:30 AM

I think this is a very beleivable account, of a quite unbelievable plot.

But i wonder whether you are embelishing the story a bit by saying that John Reid used to beat up CP members who did not follow the party line at Stirling University?

Not only is this red-baiting, but seems highly unlikely. Do you have any evidence for this? I think you weaken the credibility of your argument about the bomb plots by also including in the same account very unlikely charges against Dr Reid, and the CP.

Posted by: Andy [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 16, 2006 9:38 AM

Well, I was President of a Scottish University Students' Union myself. It is not only credible but not altogether untypical of the CPGB in Scotland in the period, I am afraid to say. And I have had first-hand accounts of Reid's behaviour at Stirling.

I have, incidentally, no great antipathy to communism as a theoretical construct, though I find apologists for Stalin risible and am generally hostile to authoritarian states of any hue.


Posted by: Craig [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 16, 2006 9:55 AM

Craig said above:

"Why do bad governments seek to amass power? Partly because they delude themselves that they really do know best and it is in everyone's interest if opposition is stifled. Partly because of the perks and buzz of untramelled power."

Can we widen the 'why'? Why has the UK government been doing what it's been doing � in the Near and Middle East alone? What makes the madness and mayhem worthwhile? Did they really think that invading Afghanistan and Iraq would do anything other than multiply human misery a million times? What parts do corporations and the military play in UK political decisions? What do UK leaders get out of their apparent subservience to the US? Why is it not attractive to take a principled, thoughtful, independent, statesmanlike approach to world issues? Why is it not seen as essential to support, improve and empower international institutions such as the UN? And what exactly are the perks?

I often wonder � naively, of course � how it might have been if Britain, faced with the US reaction to 9/11, had said something like:

"No, stop, think. We need to find out why they did this. Perhaps it is an extreme expression of something felt widely by millions. Maybe it has something to do with the relentless drive by powerful groups in the West to dominate everyone else at home and abroad � economically, environmentally, politically, militarily, socially, culturally, psychologically. Perhaps we ought to cut capitalism back a bit, be more tolerant of other cultures, and allow the good parts of our societies to rub off on others by communication and example. We could have a go at catching criminals, but more wars, killing, humiliation and mass political imprisonment are likely to make things worse. Above all, this would fit in quite well with the urgent need to work together to slow down our general destruction of the planet."

Posted by: spinstress [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 16, 2006 10:24 AM

Silly is as silly does, ScottSA�

I simplified for the sake of a blog but what I�ve put down is essentially accurate and thus not reductive. A distinction that clearly eludes the palate of the gullible.

And I have indeed slogged across your screeds that are at best scatty and at worst, na�ve piffle. For you to label anyone here �reductionist� is pure fantasy projection coming from a mind that gleefully buys one status quo red herring after the next.

It�s apparent you have less than no clue as to what and who runs the system. I merely have some grasp because I�ve bothered to look. My network also happens to include merchant bankers and Intel pros that can�t afford delusions official or otherwise. But it doesn�t take a brain trust to know the forest for the trees. Beyond that, it�s not my job to lead rude bumpkins from worldviews that approximate a child�s view. So let�s chalk up what follows to your fellow bloggers that have been more than patient with you.

Proof of 911 cover-up thru to its groundless �war on terror� (read war OF terror) abounds thru any number of works and via sites that people continually bring up on venues like this. Hence, I�ll address a few sources for de facto corporate cartel rule that masquerades as Orwellian �democracy� over �free market capitalism�. A parasitic fraud that makes more than less a killing joke of both practices wherever they are foisted:


The following quotes are from men that did not trade in lite comedy or rumor on the issue at hand:

PRESIDENT FRANKLIN D. ROOSEVELT (describing oligarch rule in a letter to handler �Colonel� Edward M. House, confidence man for the cartel and founder of the Council on Foreign Relations. House also handled President Wilson and the creation of a private and unconstitutional �Federal Reserve� Corporation and its IRS in 1913. FDR speaks of monopolists at cartel centers of New York & London that own the U.S. Government. November 21st, l933)

JAMES PAUL WARBURG (in testimony before the US Senate. Warburg was an agent of the Rockefeller-Rothschild bloc and chief architect of the �Federal Reserve� Corporation, an unconstitutional private bank monopoly set up for cartel hegemony. James Paul Warburg was the son of Paul Moritz Warburg, nephew of Felix Warburg and of Jacob Schiff, both of the Rothschild front Kuhn, Loeb & Co that financed and setup Lenin and Trotsky�s �Bolshevik Communist Revolution� thru James' brother Max, banker to the German government. February 17, 1950.)

SIR JOSIAH STAMP (Governor of the Bank of England and the 2nd richest individual in Britain. A man in service to the Rothschilds.1920)

BRITISH PRIME MINISTER DAVID LLOYD GEORGE (on the money cartel June 20, 1934)

Posted by: native [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 16, 2006 10:55 AM

Having some explosives experience myself (Navy EOD and NASA KSC propellants engineer), my first reaction to the "liquid explosives carried in hair gel bottles to blow up airplanes" was a resounding @#$%^&! The more I heard of the story, the more @#$%^! it sounded like. And then, when the Bush Crime Cartel's spin machine immediately (no planning ahead of time, right? the shameless cabal even used the exact same phrases in a dozen "individual" speeches) used it to attack the winner of the Democratic primary, Lamont, over their favorite mole, AIPAC's poster-boy Lieberman, well, even CNN and Faux were shamed into admitting that they were aware of the "suspicious" timing of the memos passed back and forth between Blair's handlers and Bush's handlers the day before the primary election.

As for troll ScottSA, those people demonstrate the typical bushvoter's inability to face reality. ("Bushvoter" means not only breathtakingly stupid, but also living in a fantasy world to an extent that would land a ten-year-old in psychiatric treatment.) The Bush Dictator-wanna-be Regime has made no secret whatsoever of their agenda of total world domination by force, including using nuclear weapons if they sense themselves losing power. Look up the word "Dominionists."

I am no fan of anarchy, but when the alternative is BushDick style anarchy and Poodle Blair's spineless complicity, well, those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable.

Posted by: The Die Hard [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 16, 2006 10:59 AM

To ScottSA ref: Being pigeonholed by Native.
I took your advice and visited your web blog, and whether Natives proboscis is elevated or not I agree with his assertion that you are unaware of any real history. In reading your various posts one in particular stood out called, "Let's Stop Pretending". In it you show several pictures of security forces from countries Britian, Canada, France, America, and Australia and then you try to infer that this is proof that these countries are under civil siege. Continuing on you dismiss any underlying causes for this and make the huge jump in logic to Islam by showing a picture of worshippers at Mecca.
Now I could do the same thing and replace those photos with people hiking in the woods and smiling at the beach, however that would not be an accurate representation of the public at large either. This is a perfect example of how propaganda is orchestrated.
The posts on your blog are a collection of open ended questions and opinion, however I wouldn't call them convincing arguments, in fact I wouldn't call them arguments at all. One thing is obvious is that you have made up your mind that all Muslims are your enemy.
Post script To: The Die Hard
ScottSa is not a Bush voter. According to ScottSAs bio he is a Canadian like myself. I would ask that the rest of Canadians not be judged by Scotts rants.

Posted by: Jeff [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 16, 2006 1:23 PM

Interesting theory Craig, I'm not sure I agree 100% with it. I'm sure the intelligent services have a whole host of people they can pick up and raid should they want to

It is however interesting how people block out certain facts, for example there are now calls for targeted screening of people (i.e. searching people who look middle eastern) however at least 1 (may be 2 I can�t remember) of the people being quizzed are white Muslim converts.

I do however agree there�s zero chance of it coming to court, the day after the arrests, when the bank of England froze the bank accounts of the suspects, the BBC kindly listed there names on it TV reports. So if the CPS (Crown Prosecution Service) did want to press charges all the suspects lawyers would have to do is point to this fact and the case would be thrown out (there�s no way they could have a fair trial).

Posted by: Scott [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 16, 2006 1:38 PM

Craig, I don't partiulcrly want to labour the point, and I am ot defending the somewaht undemocratic measures of the CP in the past, but when you say: "It is not only credible but not altogether untypical of the CPGB in Scotland in the period, I am afraid to say. And I have had first-hand accounts of Reid's behaviour at Stirling."

I would just say that it is quite a serious claim that John reid used violence for political aims as a student. So it is necessary to be sepcific abvout what you are alledging. I find it reasonably credible that there was thuggish behaviour in general student politics, and that reid may have played a part in it, but I find it unlikely that this was used within the CP to enforce discipline.

After all most political parties and religious groups enforce discipline through a shared ideology, bonds of loyalty, etc, and violence is exceptional.

Posted by: Andy [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 16, 2006 2:46 PM

I'm no where near old enogth to ever have met dr Reid on the left, however.... The SWP now as the CP before them does have a reputation of using violence against other left orginisations, so I wouldn't find it strange that Dr Reid may have a history in that respect, but it's likely to be against other left groups rather than against members of the CP.

Posted by: Scott [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 16, 2006 4:31 PM

P.S. It's due to the way both the CP and the SWP flip-flot there policys depending on who they want to attract at that time, while trying to keep the idea of a principaled politics.

P.P.S. Not all left groups work like that, in fact most as Andy points out gel because of shared ideology. However if you don't.....

Posted by: Scott [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 16, 2006 4:53 PM

Well, as I think I said above, it's a specific allegation and I have met people directly involved. If I didn't believe it would stand up in court, I wouldn't say it.

I do not believe the matters in dispute were ideological. I don't mean to imply that communists in general are violent. But hard left student politics in Scotland forty years ago could be. If you wanted to argue that was no more of a reflection of a tendency to violence in Scottish working class culture of the period, I wouldn't argue.

If anyone reading this knew him at Stirling and wants to chip in...

The following is, I confess, hazy, but someone with better memory or more time to dig...I have a memory of accusations of physically bullying behaviour by Reid over key votes towards potential rebel MPs. Anyone track that down?

But I would like to make the point that Scotland is not a big country, it has a few universities, and quite a tight political class - we tend to know stuff about each other. That is, for example, why I met people who crossed swords with Reid at University, or why the first time I met Robin Cook he was able to tell me several stories about myself.



Posted by: Craig [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 16, 2006 5:54 PM

I think that debates on whether Government officials deliberately lie -- and whether it is plausible that they should not be caught in those lies -- miss the point and misconstrue what has been happening. The problem is not as "innocent" as mere deception: it is rather one of self-deception, which in a sense is much worse. At least deceivers know what the truth is.

The raw output of intelligence operations is not "facts", but evidence. Intercepts, documents, gossip, interrogations, purchased information, confidential disclosures etc., often provide a murky, partial, and contradictory picture. They must be sifted and weighed by analysts, who bring expertise and dispassionate judgement to the table, in order to form calibrated conclusions tempered by disclaimers of uncertainty appropriate to the quality of the evidence.

This sort of dispassionate analysis is precisely what did not happen in the case of the "WMD Affair", despite the attempts by many commissions of intelligence experts to clear themselves of responsibility for the debacle.

The fact of the matter is that inside the US intelligence community at least, it was completely clear that serious career damage would occur to anyone expressing doubt about the quality of the evidence for (1) the level of development of various Iraqi WMD programs, and (2) the extent to which those programs could be connected to a terrorist threat. George Tenet himself set the nuance-free tone to be followed by his troops with his "Slam Dunk" rhetoric. And the hatchet job directed by Cheney at Ambassador Wilson -- not a member of the intelligence community -- for pointing out that the bullshit evidence about Niger uranium was, well, bullshit, leaves one to imagine what the likely consequence would be for an intelligence family member who had the temerity to commit the same sort of points to paper.

Keep in mind that the people running the US International Security establishment are the same people who made names for themselves during the Cold War by complaining vociferously about "soft" CIA analyses about the Soviet threat, and demanding "Team B" re-analyses to confirm their belief that the USSR was preparing to launch an imminent war. They never had any respect for the professional intelligence analysts who are now their subordinates, and who they can now direct to the conclusions that they require. Those subordinates can tell which way the wind is blowing, and either quit or trim their sails.

If a culprit is to be sought in a mentality, then that mentality is not mendacity, but ideology. The senior members of the Bush administration *knew* what the "right" answer was. If you start from the conclusion, then it is not hard to pick a weighting of the available evidence that supports it, the evidence being sufficiently flexible and ambiguous to permit a variety of interpretations. Intelligence analysis is a frail and error-prone business under the best of circumstances, but ideological preconceptions poison it entirely.

Posted by: Carlo Graziani [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 16, 2006 6:18 PM

Carlo -

Great poat, and I couldn't agree more. I know I keep saying this, but you really should read my book for an inside account of what happened within the British establishment over the "War on Terror". You don't need to buy it - get it from a library.


Posted by: Craig [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 16, 2006 7:47 PM

Thank you for posting this. I was feeling a bit tinfoil-ly, because that was my take, too.

Posted by: Petro [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 16, 2006 8:52 PM

That's a totally groundless smear:
The UK Passport Authority is actually fairly efficient these days

Posted by: underblog [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 16, 2006 10:05 PM

Petro, I wouldn't be too quick to take off the tinfoil hat yet. It appears that the police do indeed have a great deal of evidence here. It is simply impossible for this to have been some kind of nefarious plot. I have seen nothing here outside of ad hominem, speculation just this side of the Elders of Zion, and massive category errors to suggest that there is any inkling of truth to these allegations.

One poster used the following 'proof': [anything that Bush says is a lie, therefore this must be a lie]. 'Sophomoric' is far too kind a term for this type of argument, if indeed it can be dignified as an argument.

Another poster issued forth with snippets of quotation taken out of context and spanning the entire previous century to prove that there is afoot a worldwide nefarious plot to hold all the world hostage to a sort of restated bureaucratic imperitive based on greed, and presumably world Jewry, if the Rothschild reference is understood by the poster who used it.

Another poster took a small agitprog piece I constructed and painstakingly deconstructed it to show how it conveys a message without taking everything else into consideration and to him I can only point out that he ought really take this up with Gramsci and Lenin, since the intent is obviously not to dissect the subject academically, but to present it starkly. Duh. He should perhaps read instead "Alfred and the complexity of war" if he wants a more analytical take on things.

Some have even visited my blog to announce that the WTC was a CIA plot. Whatever...

Some above, like Carlo, are actually sane, and suggest that instead of bellowing the reductionist "LIE!" at Bush, people instead look at the process by which the Bush administration arrived at its erroneous conclusion, along with the rest of the western world, including even Blix and France, who believed that Iraq had and was building WMD. But even Carlos believes that somewhere, even if at the very top, there was an intentional "lie". Maybe and maybe not, but I have to ask then, why didn't the people who actually collected the evidence, including people like Hans Blix and the intelligence agencies of both france and Germany, simply present the 'true' evidence or lack thereof if it existed? It was in their own best interests to do so, given their stated positions, so why didn't they?

Listen folks, I understand that its hard for the western mind to wrap itself around the magnitude of the horror here. I understand also the degree of self-loathing post-colonial Europe subjects itself to. I understand the refusal to accept the almost complete lack of rationality behind these attacks.

But for God's sake guys...there have been attacks...major attacks...across the globe and on a regular basis, including one major attack in London itself. How can you sit there and deny that terror exists and that it is a creation of Islam and not Blair? Has Gandhi made such a profound impact on the British psyche that it has taken his admonishment to "see no evil" literally, and embellished it with "unless we can accuse our own politicians"?

Posted by: ScottSA [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 16, 2006 10:20 PM


A reasoned assessment. (as an aside, I�ll look over Craig�s book)

However, I would have to partially disagree with the following:

�I think that debates on whether Government officials deliberately lie -- and whether it is plausible that they should not be caught in those lies -- miss the point and misconstrue what has been happening. The problem is not as "innocent" as mere deception: it is rather one of self-deception, which in a sense is much worse. At least deceivers know what the truth is.�

Deception by temp government actors for entrenched cartel clients is nothing new. For the case of �war on terror� deliberate deception as policy has been decades in war gaming and development. At the top, nothing this large was left to chance including the Israel card (that the provisional plan has gone badly awry is unarguable).

Lest we forget, Saddam was palmed off on Iraq by CIA and Brit forces from 1959 to eventually butcher a million Iraqis primarily in trade for Big Oil (Iraq Petroleum Co). Saddam and his Baathists were only cut when officially suckered to take Kuwait and betrayed for the Gulf War. As for intelligence �self-deception� vs. �dispassionate judgment�, the CIA (Cartel Intelligence Agency) has overthrown at least 20 democracies since WW2 for corporate cashbox clients.

What remains at stake from Mid East to Eurasian theatres is trillions in Big Oil wealth and water resources that further beggar concepts of self-deception. To socialize the costs of a calculated attempt to manage those resources for elite gains is not theory or ideology. It now occurs on the ground as a matter of practical policy.

Item: Significant wars have always been fought over public wealth (blood money) for private power. Quo Bono�

Only the trusting would assume that the bulk of senior intelligence pros could not see this one coming. Scott Ritter and a minor host of others certainly did. As you more than mentioned, self-serve career survival of intelligence folk on a political firing line was crucial.

And at the risk of being �reductive� this is a vast collective shell game. As with our privately owned central banking systems, the public continues to pick up the cost of its own shackles as it is led and bred to do so thru MSM psyops.

PAUL WOLFOWITZ (the US Deputy Defense Secretary in effect admitting that the Iraq War was fought over Big Oil factors. He gave this response to a question as to why the U.S. made war on Iraq and not North Korea, a country that is developing nuclear weapons of mass destruction. Quoted from a talk to an Asian security summit in Singapore 5/ 31/03)

Posted by: native [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 16, 2006 10:49 PM

I find it hard to believe a diplomat who had the courage to quit rather than be part of a vile system is being made fun of on this forum.

But then again when right wingers can mock the widows of 9-11 victims and get away with it, can one expect anything worse?

Apparently low morals goes with low poll numbers.

Frankly I felt the whole story was one big bag of bull crap the moment it broke. How easily the Israel v Lebanon conflict disappeared from the TV screens was shocking. Not one word on CNN, MSNBC< Fox, and CNN Headline News.

As for upstarts like Anderson Cooper 360 and his ilk, they abandoned their friends in Israel for a free trip to good old London.

After all nothing like Liberals enjoying wine, women, and song along with the Conservatives who brought us this scam in the first place.

Two sides of the same coin!

Posted by: Sabuj_Bangla [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 16, 2006 11:27 PM

The drumbeat is incessant. We now have roadside electronic signs beside the interstates in Maryland with Terrorist Hotline telephone numbers. Not surprisingly, Maryland has a Republican governor.

Posted by: Helix6 [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 12:39 AM

A former high ranking civil servant in a former Commonwealth country, then, Scottie? So that'll be IRELAND or ZIMBABWE.

Unless you mean countries that merged to form other countries that are still members, namely Newfoundland, Tanganyika, and Zanzibar.

There aren't any other former members of the Commonwealth. Anywhere else that left has rejoined.

And you call Craig the former ambassador "of" (presumably a typo for "in") a "tinpot proto-republic". (He was actually the ambassador OF a tinpot American dependency with a local monarch. As for Uzbekistan, well, say what you like about French republics, but the Tashkent regime seems more like proto-Hitlerite, if you really must use the prefix "proto").

You're a phony, try hard as you may.

Craig has my respect as writing what he writes in good faith. You, no.

Posted by: b_anana [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 12:41 AM

In the unlikely event that anybody here gives any credence to ScottSA, just click his name and check out his own blog. Any semblance of sanity he might give here is quickly disspelled upon seeing him in his own element.

Posted by: chawlee [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 1:29 AM

to: scottsa,//

i am in the audit business and as an investigator of sorts i know that any piece of evidence, no matter how small, can be enough to completely cripple a previously solid argument.//

[excuse the financial spin on this generalised example] if one of my clients were to assert that all purchase orders were checked by the financial director, i'd be inclined to believe them... until i find a single PO that had not been signed off by the FD. this small singular piece of evidence casts the entire process into doubt. note here i say doubt. i don't mean that uncovering this new evidence means that this company is in a state of anarchy and no processes are followed, etc, i just mean that there is reason for further investigation.//

keep an open mind and, as craig says as the very last line of the post, "Be sceptical. Be very, very sceptical."//

key point: craig is only providing probable cause for doubt. posters like you who try and shoot that down only end up looking naive and ridiculous. i say go ahead and believe, but be ready to question when contrary evidence appears.//


Posted by: scign [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 1:35 AM

Your comments have now been picked up by major blogs AmericaBlog and Andrew Sullivan.



Posted by: Bob Morris [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 1:36 AM

To ScottSA

First your statement that includes Hans Blix as someone that believed Iraq had and was building WMD before the war is completely false.

On March 6, 2003 less than two weeks before the outbreak of the Iraq War, Hans Blix testified to the UN Security Council that, "No proscribed activities, or the result of such activities, from the period of 1998-2002 have, so far, been detected through inspections." The following day IAEA Director General Mohamed Elbaradei informed the UN Security Council that, "After three months of intrusive inspection, we have to date found no evidence or plausible indication of the revival of a nuclear weapons programme in Iraq."
Researchers had carefully deconstructed claims made by the Bush and Blair administrations before the Iraq War, but the media did not provide proper analysis of these counterclaims.

So the question is are you purposely lying or is it that you just don't know?

Secondly nobody is saying that there is no terrorist threat, it's the methodology in dealing with it that has to be questioned.

Thirdly your statement that terror exists and that it is a creation of Islam is false.

Some facts that may interest you.
Between 1980 and 2003, there were 315 suicide attacks worldwide for the most part by secular Tamil Tigers.(So did the Tamils create terrorism?) Since the US invasion in Iraq where such attacks were virtually unknown before, they now range as high as 400 and counting.
Do you know what the Nazis called the Dutch resistance in world war two?(Terrorists).
I'm sure you have heard the quote, "One mans terrorist is another mans freedom fighter".

Lastly I would ask that you tone down your cavalier, arrogant, and pompous know it all attitude, especially given that your facts are generally skewed and sometimes completely wrong.

Posted by: Jeff [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 3:00 AM

For those who throw back 'conspiracy theory' to silence all, I suggest you see Part 3 of the BBC-screened documentary 'The Power of Nightmares'. It shows clearly that there is no Al Queda network. It is a fiction.

The video may be viewed here: http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/video1040.htm

Once you factor that in to all you read about the 'war on terror', it will all start to make more sense: absolutely shocking and frightening sense.

We know that power corrupts. Look to the powerful: they have the facility and the motives.

When London train bombers are identified as perfectly normal nice young men and, one year later, police have found not a scrap of evidence to connect them or anyone else with the bombings, you may be pretty certain of one thing: they really were nice young men.

The men: href="http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,22989-1693739,00.html
One year on: http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,22989-2254680.html

Posted by: deCinabre [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 10:10 AM

It's been pointed out by a few people that it would be next to impossible to cook up acetone peroxides on a plane, because in all likelyhood you'd horribly maim yourself without being able to produce any actual explosive eg:


Posted by: xeno [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 11:51 AM

Oh Dear,

You see this sort of delusional crap in the states- but I am amazed that someone who made it past bin-man in the civil service is now spouting it off.

Your analysis is based upon the false premise that Geroge W, or Dr John or whomever is weaving some world-wide islamo-terror plot to keep us scared for their own evil agenda- god knows what- perhaps the military industrial complex- wotever.

The trouble with your analysis is that the islamo-terrorists have form. I get the feeling you'd like to just forget about, the WTC, Pentagon, London (Kings' X, Edgeware, aldgate, Russle Square), Madrid, Bali.....

What will it take for the prawn sandwich and latte brigade to pull their heads out and wake up to the fact that this post-modernity exploding jihadi phenonomen is my generation's WWIII?

To paraphrase the fictional Col Nathan R Jessop: I hope you're proud of yourself- you've put an entire nation at risk with this baloney.

Posted by: kris [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 12:26 PM

Oh Dear,

You see this sort of delusional crap in the states- but I am amazed that someone who made it past bin-man in the civil service is now spouting it off.

Your analysis is based upon the false premise that Geroge W, or Dr John or whomever is weaving some world-wide islamo-terror plot to keep us scared for their own evil agenda- god knows what-perhaps the military industrial complex- wotever.

The trouble with your analysis is that the islamo-terrorists have form. I get the feeling you'd like to just forget about, the WTC, Pentagon, London (Kings' X, Edgeware, Aldgate, Russell Square), Madrid, Bali.....

What will it take for the prawn sandwich and latte brigade to pull their heads out and wake up to the fact that this post-modernity exploding jihadi phenonomen is my generation's WWIII?

To paraphrase the fictional Col Nathan R Jessop: I hope you're proud of yourself- guys like you put an entire nation at risk with this baloney.


Posted by: kris [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 12:32 PM


Don't be foolish.

World War 1 deaths 16 million
World War 2 deaths 62 million
"War on Terror" deaths 150,000

Of whome some 10,000 have been killed by Islamic terrorism or guerilla action worldwide since 2,000, and the rest by the US and allies (including Israel).

These are ballpark figures, but the scale is obviously completely different. A third world war - you have no idea what you are talking about.

If you actually believe what you say, I sincerely hope you are on the way to sign up at your nearest army recruitment centre.


Posted by: Craig [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 12:49 PM

"Your expose' or whatever you fancy it to be is the deranged mutterings of a conspiracy theorist. Grow up."

Whereas your closed-minded, authoritarian dismissal (in the tone of a public school housemaster berating Forbes Minor) is the wittering of an establishment stooge.

Posted by: Nortcliff [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 1:43 PM

"To paraphrase the fictional Col Nathan R Jessop: I hope you're proud of yourself- you've put an entire nation at risk with this baloney."

Wasn't this fictional Colonel Jessop convicted of being complicit in a fictional murder?

Why are you quoting fictional murderers Kris?

Posted by: Nortcliff [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 2:04 PM

August 17th 2006

YES - i'm convinced there�s a plot here in the U.K�

tony blair said he wanted this country to become internet aware, to move into the future,

so, he started messing with the media, until you couldn't rely on it to inform any more.

he plotted, successfully as it happens, to drive us onto the Internet to find out for ourselves. Sure enough, there�s a wealth of information, opinion and dialogue here - freedom of speech, even.
Long Live the World Wild Web!

he even took a long holiday, at a crucial time in world politics and despite an attempt by his parliament to recall, he stayed away.

he needed to let us discover the internet and all that is going on in the world. He was giving us the space to find out for ourselves.

thank you, mr blair, for your wonderful efforts to promote freedom, democracy and the opportunity for free speech.

Thank you also, Craig Murray, for your nice bit of writing, it has given me pause for thought

please also, mr blair, make as sure as you can, that the internet is never censored and is always free for the use of us all. i bet you try and do that too...

Posted by: bob cat [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 2:20 PM

Great article. How the press immediately followed the official line and then started adding to it by publishing pages after pages about the new profile of terrorists (mothers with young kids, students, young & old ... well, pretty much everyone is now a potential terrorist if we follow this line of reasoning), their new methods (after knives and shoes now come the shampoo bottles) is nothing short of intellectual terrorism. What we should realize is that whether this plot turns out to be real or not is a question that is quickly fading into the background (in all the press reports that I've read I'm still waiting to see a shred of hard evidence). Instilling fear, suspicion and security paranoia into the mind of ordinary people is an objective already amply achieved. Soon the majority of the population will be happy to surrender its last remaining liberties, hand over permanent political control to a bunch of megalomaniac thugs and feel very satisfied with it. After all most of us have for good reasons a short memory. Who remembers all those past police raids following "mysterious" intelligence information about terrorist cells and plots that turned out in the end to be ... bogus! But at the end of the day what is not bogus is the shredding of hard-won liberties and social security that actually make life in society possible. Centuries of social struggle cancelled by a few real bombs and countless imaginary ones. Welcome (back) to the state of nature, ape-man.

Posted by: kid tung [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 3:53 PM

Within hours after the arrests, it was apparent from what British and U.S. official and unofficial sources were saying that at least States-side, the stringent onboard carryon rules were politically-motivated and had nothing to do with needed security. By all accounts there was and remains simply no known threat in the U.S. But the Americans, even Bush-hating liberals, are worldly-ignorant and gullible, so the Administration figured its advantage.

It was also apparent within a day that the Bush Administration had put great pressure on Britain to make arrests and get the matter public. No doubt the timing of the Connecticut primary, as well as the upcoming November elections, was the driving force. It also looked like what forced the arrests was the U.S., after some unsuccessful attempts at persuasion, going around Brits to the Pakistani government and getting that fellow picked up. The British could only insist it be done on the up and up, so as not to completely blow their operation back home.

That left the British government's actions to explain. If, based on early reports, all, or virtually all, of the known leaders had been picked up; the suspects hadn't built anything or even figured out an explosive mix that would work operationally; and they hadn't cased the airport yet, then it all raised a question about the actual need for the airport measures in Britain. The lack of passports for some is not necessarily damning, since that doesn't preclude a multiple-wave scenario, but added to the other information, didn't look supportive of a terrorist claim.

And then there was that guy in Pakistan. That's where Craig Murray's information here about the fellow's background really adds something. A guy on the lamb for a family-based crime running an international political-terrorist bombing operation? Yeah, right! You'd have to be completely insane to touch that guy on anything more than a personal level. Unless,...the guy had been turned by the Pakistanis or British or someone and was really setting up a sting, which it so far doesn't sound like. Since the Pakastani police's reputation is well-established, and tens of thousands of travellers and money transfers go between Britain and Pakistan annually, it leaves the ringleader-in Pakistan story looking pretty shaky, to say the least.

Craig, your harping on John Reid rings of some combination of personal vendetta and plain anti-communism. A passing phrase in the preceding paragraph about his past as a Stalinist thug would have sufficed, but even that would have appeared gratuitous; i.e., what relevance to the terrorist story does the fact that Reid was a Stalinist and one of their thugs have? Taking a paragraph detour to expose Reid's past and going on about it in the comments has the smell of something deeper and rather ugly. But then, you threw your lot in with Her Majesty's government, so a bit of posturing to protect your flank against red baiting, given the very explosive nature of the topic, is understandable.

Posted by: rogilman [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 5:46 PM

Hello all. From the perspective as the citizen of a Commonwealth country that has been similarly targetted by 'terrorists':
http://www.cbc.ca/news/background/toronto-bomb-plot/index.html, it is fairly clear what is going on in the media of President Bush, his poodle and his newly acquired Canadian gerbil. I found this post instuctive:

"How silly. As a former high ranking civil servant in a former commonwealth country I can assure you that you never had "very highest security clearances" as the ambassador of a tinpot proto-republic. Your expose' or whatever you fancy it to be is the deranged mutterings of a conspiracy theorist. Grow up"

I'm going to assume for the moment that the second sentence, which of the three is unique in that it contains (at least an alleged) fact, is true. I do this because my knowledge of of all matters surrounding security clearances, even in my own country, is nil.

It is completely irrelevant and distracts from the point of the discussion on which it has no bearing. This tactic seems the stock-in-trade of the propaganda corps on both sides of the pond these days.

I love the term "conspiracy theorists", designed as it is to immediately win the debate for anyone able to pronounce it. Conspiracies occur throughout the world, from a couple of schoolboys plotting to ambush their classmates with snowballs, to Enron's fixing of California's energy prices, to members of my country's Benny Hill version of MI-5 (CSIS) convincing a group of teenaged paintball players/internet chatroom terrorists to buy some fertilizer from them...

"Grow up", indeed.

It was a pleasure to read Mr. Murray's perspective on the foiled terrorist plot.

Alternatives to the Party (Repuliconservativelabour) Line are like gold these days.

Posted by: PAYO [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 6:04 PM

I feel a need to provide more insight into the US connection with a viewpoint of someone within in the United States. We have gone through a few outings of conspiracies similar to that of the "toothpaste bombers" in England. On Thursday, June 22nd of this year the FBI raided a warehouse in the Liberty City area of Miami, Florida and arrested 7 members of a quasi-Muslim group who were unknowingly plotting with an undercover agent to destroy the Sears Tower in Chicago, and local federal buildings in Florida. The Miami plotters may have come across as a rather ridiculous and bizarre lot, and a more composed judge of their acumen may have pointed out that they didn�t even have the bus fare to get to Chicago, but their malicious intent still presented some danger to the general public. The same people contemplating packing back packs with explosives and detonating them on public transport would certainly be a serious danger. While the plotters in Great Britain were probably better supported and more enlightened in their contemplation and projection of violent activities against the public, my suspicion is that, without knowing the details of the conspiracy, their level of competence in its execution was fairly close to the �Miami 7�. I even believed initially that given the news of the foiling of the plot was coming from Great Britain; there must have been a credible and eminent danger of terrorist activity. Here in the US I would have believed that is was just one more example of political hype and an administration grasping at straws. But with more information such as that contained in this �blog�, the affair started to smell like a fish.

I believe now that the exposure of the plot was in fact politically motivated and that its timing was probably orchestrated in the US. It now seems to me that the plot could have been exposed a month earlier or a month later with the same effect on the state of US and British security. The opportune time was after the Lamont primary victory. I believe the Republican leadership understands the significance of the victory and the subsequent morphing of that whiney fraud, Joe Lieberman, into an Independent much more than the leadership of the Democratic does. These events will just hasten the potential disintegration of the Democratic Party, having it playing out in the timeframe of the 2006 election year rather than 2008. If the Democrats don�t start exhibiting one of the essential behaviors of a political party and expel members that do not support the core doctrine of that party, then the party will fall apart. It�s been a long time since they have showed any sense of party discipline. With that dismemberment, the effective two party structure of US politics will change, which may be a good thing if it doesn�t sooner result in the self destruction of the nation. I think that the Republicans understood it to be well worth their while to have the "toothpaste bombers" exposed at this time, enabling them again to amplify their terrorist dirge and direct its tenor against Lamont and the Democratic Party.

Posted by: richsmith2 [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 6:19 PM

I'm in phase with you but I speack french end very bad english


Posted by: Genius [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 6:24 PM

What richsmith2 has posted about the "Miami 7" is almost identical to the scenario surrounding the Toronto 17, with the obvious exception of the specific political motivations. However, our Prime Minister is in a relatively precarious position, with a minority government. He is slipping in the polls even though the only credible opposition party is without a leader. An election will probably be called for one reason or another within a couple of years and the conservatives will probably need a majority to avoid giving power back to the Liberals. A strong "War on Terror" pose is what Mr. Bush' gerbil is trying to strike (along with wars on crime, taxes, immigration, drugs, minorities, social programs...y'all know the script).

Posted by: PAYO [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 6:32 PM

Quote from the American Press:

Authorities at Scotland Yard are questioning a husband and wife, suspects in the London terror plot, about allegations that they were planning to use their baby's bottle to hide a liquid bomb.

Police in the U.K. have recovered baby bottles containing peroxide, including some with false bottoms, from a recycling center close to the homes of some of the arrested suspects.

The use of female suicide bombers has been successful in previous airplane attacks.

Hydrogen peroxide - for cleaning baby bottles

I don't want to belittle the police force of the U.K. or the home office but i think if they were to investigate the matter of baby bottles with peroxide in them a little further they might find that they are widespread over the whole of the United Kingdom. Baby bottles with traces of peroxide are extremely common objects - in fact they are the norm.

Hudrogen peroxide solution can be used as a baby bottle cleaning and disinfecting product and can be purchased over the counter at any chemist.
Any bottle that has been cleaned with this product will contain traces of hydrogen peroxide.

I am sure there is no conspiracy, but poorly informed investigations and even poorer reporting is producing a circus that will eventually reflect badly on those without the will to check their information before they disseminate it.

Check out a few more recycling centres around the country and you'll find it is in baby bottles everywhere.

I pity the predicament of that poor couple.

Posted by: bob cat [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 18, 2006 12:36 AM

ScottSA... those who by nature around 'here' find their own govts more dangerous than the objective reality of say a 'Lakshar' or the widely lauded teachings of Qutb AND the consequences of same, are no doubt the same people who would have voted for Stanley Baldwin, and gone right along with the Oxford Club of 1935 when they voted not to fight for King and Country.

These people don't exhibit the healthy skepticsms of most americans who by nature HATE govt (repub or dem), rather they are those to whom the culture, history and nature of their civilization make mandatory the conclusion that anything govt does must be intentionally wrong if not evil.

The FACT that govt's tend to amass power as a natural physical force, if you will, does NOT make them, evil, just human, and just as human is the desire to make sure we SURVIVE

Timothy Mcveigh was no genius, and his group of hidden, barely noticeable miscreants not much different than the gavones in Miami .. but they succeeded easily.

While objections to this (believing YOUR freely elected representative(s) a greater danger than the demonstrable inimical opponents to one's way of life) in the extreme may pass for the usual noise in a time of say, 1992, today as it was the day the Oxford club voted, and when Baldwin's ostrich acted was extant, - it is a non survival mutation.

ScottSA, you will never overcome this prejudice with facts.

Tasked with prevention of another 9/11 what WELL MEANING, or selfishly career protective public servant would err on the side of civil liberties, when a command of 'do you you attacks now' was sent to the very people under surveillance?

Place yourself right in that position.

The supposition that Bush was poltically desperate, itself, is, as an american who is a lifelong democrat .. simply stupid. Sorry Craig, but that's how I see that. Bush, for better or worse is VERY comfortable with the path he has chosen (we can argue about whether or not the path is valid, but his reasons for it are quite plain). The reasons for this situation should be contemplated by those who assign political motivation and a BIG LIE. Bush is worried about future history, and answerablility to a greater power, not 2006 and what the next OP ED says.

I don't know Reid, so I can't comment on his personal proclivities.

Your explanation sounds like projection to me.

Posted by: epaminondas [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 18, 2006 12:00 PM

The media have told us that it was Muslims who were responsible for the attacks on September 11th 2001. The media have told us that it was Muslims that were responsible for the bombings in London on July 7th.

If they're lying to us, how would we ever know? Where do they get their information from? The police and the government spokespeople, and the media will report verbatim anything these people say, because they've got a dozen newspapers and half-a-dozen 24-news channels and they've got to have something, anything, to put on the air.

The police arrested two Muslim brothers, shooting one in the shoulder during the arrest, despite his being unarmed. They had 250 officers to arrest two men. They found nothing despite searcing the house and garden for days. Now, they claim to have found child pornography on a computer seized during the raid. It doesn't matter whether they're lying or not, if they later drop the charges due to 'lack of evidence' - that poor sod's finished in his community.

The current flap over liquid explosives - which *very* quickly went in the UK press from 'plot' to 'alleged plot' - could have been easily manufactured, if it suited the government's purposes, whatever those purposes might be at any given time.

I don't know what the government are up to. Chances are, large chunks of the government don't know what the government is up to. You know all those spy movies, and espionage thrillers, where a small group of really powerful people make decisions and tell cold, anonymous men to carry out their wishes. That happens in real life, only we don't get to see it happen, and it involves less motorcycles jumping over helicopters. Your average MP won't be privy to some of these decisions, chances are he/she won't even know the group exists.

Don't believe me? Try going into the MI5 building someday. just to say "Hi, what you up to this week?" - see how far you get. As long as they figure that we the plebs don't need to know, we'll never know.

If not for people like Craig Murray, our chances of ever hearing any other side to these stories would be far more limited.

Posted by: Leo Sasquatch [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 18, 2006 9:28 PM

PAYO, while you rightly qualify the Miami 7 business, I'd be careful about suggesting any nefarious intent on their part. The leader of the group is supposedly well known in the area as an egomaniac and hustler. The kind that says, "Sure, sure, you get me these things, man, and yeah, Chicago tower, yeah, Chicago, sounds cool, man." If these guys don't cop to get out from under the charges, I'd say it's going to be one entertaining trial.

As for the British affair, most of the solid news seems to have come out in the first two or three days. It will be interesting to see what, if anything, the various police forces come up with.

Posted by: rogilman [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 18, 2006 10:04 PM

I found this post: http://tjic.com/blog/2006/08/15/charlie-stross-master-of-fantasy/ through Sixteen Volts. It's a response to a different commentator, but it seems to fit here almost as well.

Posted by: TGGP [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 18, 2006 10:13 PM

enjoying the discourse here. Scott SA....there are so many people like you who believe the governments can't get away with lies, that they do....that and low IQs and the fear they instill in ordinary folk...

here's some interesting tibits



Posted by: craftnael [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 20, 2006 2:31 AM

rogilman, admittedly I haven't been following the Miami story, nor even the British story all that closely, si it's quite possible that I've missed important elements.

I'd agree with you as well about being cautious in ascribing "nefarious" motives to the players on the government's side. I'd say that "opportunism" is the word I'd use to account for the synchronicity in the timing of the plot discoveries in the 3 nations within weeks of each other.
It seems pretty clear so far that in the Canadian case, the group member who showed the most initiative was the CSIS agent who was working the sting for his higher-ups.

I'm thinking the trial might be entertaining as well.

It's worth recalling that CSIS is the organization that bungled the investigation of the worst mass murder in Canadian history, the 1985 bombing of Air India flight 182 that killed more than 250 Canadian citizens.

Posted by: PAYO [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 21, 2006 6:09 PM

Your thesis is reasonable, Craig, and I had already had similar thoughts myself. Be sceptical, you say, be very sceptical. But then you state that you are "certain that the timing is deeply political". How can you be both sceptical AND certain that the whole affair was plotted by the government? How do you "know for certain" that the timing was not chosen by Islamic terrorists so that gullible lefties like yourself would be "certain" that it must be a government plot? It seems to me that the timing, coming just after the Muslim leaders' open letter to the government, is just as convenient for them as for the government. The problem with conspiracy theories, as you surely have the intelligence and experience to be aware, is that you can always construct a conspiracy to fit the opposite of what you believe. I am afraid that your "conspiracy", as always, is merely the peddling of your own preconceptions and prejudices. How will your certainty look if the martydom videos now reported turn out to be genuine? Or are they faked by the government as well?

As an example of your prejudices, you suggest that the low conviction rate of arrested Muslim suspects proves that the government is simply harassing Muslims. There is a similar low conviction rate of rapists, so do you believe that the reports of rape are invented by feminists in order to harass men?

What I fail to understand is why left-wing opponents of the government have such a tolerant attitude towards fundamentalist Islam. The Muslim leaders and politicians in their open letter sought a recognition that the government's foreign policy was contributing to the alienation of Muslim youth. What I would like to see is a recognition from those self-same Muslim leaders that Islamic terrorism, and passages in the Koran calling for the killing of various opponents of Islam, is contributing to the anti-Islamic feeling they so object to. I am not anti-Islamic because of racism, I am anti-Islamic (I reject the term Islamophobic) for the same reasons I am anti-Nazi; i.e., I believe it is a destructive and oppressive ideology. Why should Muslims expect the government to change its policies to suit their requirements when they show no inclination to change their ideology to suit our requirements? Why do they object to the attacks on mosques by people alienated by Islamic terrorism, who are reacting in just the same way as the British Muslim terrorists? Just double standards again, I suppose.

Posted by: john.o.hart [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 22, 2006 11:14 AM

john.o.hart, that governments lie to their people is so well-documented that it hardly bears repeating. That the media is complicit in this for structural reasons (not generally because of a "conspiracy") is also beyond question. That the US and British governments have lied to their people has been unequivocally documented again and again, and that the particulars of the most egregious of these lies concerns the nature and extent of the Islamic terrorist threat to the West is more than enough reason to be deeply sceptical of official pronouncements on this subject.

This is particularly true when the aim of these pronouncements is to get the citizenry to give up protections against government intrusion into rights surrounding free speech, protection against arbitrary arrest and loss of due legal process.

I would submit that you are anti-Islamic because you have swallowed the simplistic caricature of Muslims that had replaced the older caricatures of Jews and Blacks as the new "regrettable truth" that permits de-humanization of the people we want to crush.
There is as much variation within the ranks of the world's 1.5 billion Muslims as there is amongst the world's Christians, not all of whom are bigotted, money-worshipping, anti-intellectual simpletons (although there are many of those within their ranks, just as there are militant jihadists among Muslims). Until you recognize this truth, that those of us who count Muslims among our friends and family know from experience, then you remain racist, your dissembling about the "ideology" notwithstanding.

The crack about "leftists" tolerating fundamentalist Islam is just cheap rhetoric. Leftists tend to be deeply suspicious of religious fundamentalism in general, which is perhaps why they are so concerned about the presence of so many of them in the upper echelons of US power.

Posted by: PAYO [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 22, 2006 6:07 PM


But I haven't said the whole thing was a government conspiracy, or that there was no terror plot; we will see. I still doubt there was anthing of the scale and capability claimed.

But the timing of the arrests was political, and in the event that there really was a plot, quite possibly premature - plenty of reputable sources have reported that the UK law enforcement agencies were unhappy that they were pushed into making arrests too soon.

You strike me as too bright to need the Aunt Sally of pretending that I said the government invented the whole thing. I doubt that too.

Posted by: Craig [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 23, 2006 12:12 AM

On Islamophobia

So called Christians bomb abortion clinics and kill doctors in America. Catholics and US neo-con evangelicals are killing far more people than Bin Laden ever will, by their doctrinaire opposition to condoms underminging the fight against AIDS in Africa.

Yet Christ was a great teacher, and his moral precepts basically sound. The same is true of Islam. I am against religious intolerance. I am against the suppression of women. But I am also against the stigmatisation of one of the World's great religions. 95% of Judaism, Christianity and Islam is held in common. We need more discussion and understanding, and to encourage moderate and progressive elements in Islam, as in Christianity and Judaism. Your simple hatred is lazy and uneducated, John. Islamophobe is the right word for you.

Posted by: Craig [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 23, 2006 12:20 AM

To Craig and john o. hart

There is a common humanitarian thread that does connect most religions. However in each religion there are fragmentary groups willing to take the written word out of context and to the extreme in meaning. It is very difficult to argue religious dogma, because people will interpret script and believe what they want.
If there is a moral truism that we should all hold on to is the freedom to pursue religion, because in the end people will do it anyway. You cannot bomb an ideology. This is one reason why most westernized nations have incorporated this freedom in their written constitutions.
The Bush administration would like us all to believe that Islamic terrorism is the most important threat that exists in our lives. Keeping aside their reasons for doing this, fatalities from other domestic causes far exceed any terrorist attacks to date in the U.S.
For example almost as many Americans die each month from gunshot wounds as died in the Twin Towers, the Pentagon, and U. A. flight 93 combined, and that�s just one of the social ills in the United States.

Posted by: Jeff [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 23, 2006 7:46 AM

Payo's accusation that I am racist is unjustified and offensive. Muslims are a religious group, not a racial group. If I said I was anti-Nazi, would that be rejected as anti-German racism? In what way is it racist to object to the death penalty for apostates and blasphemers, which we have seen many Muslims calling for? These calls are supported by the highest leaders of Islam, e.g. the fatwa issued by Ayatollah Khomeini against Salman Rushdie. When did the Pope or the Archbishop of Canterbury last call for someone to be killed?

Just because much anti-Muslim sentiment arises from racist attitudes is no reason to assume that all anti-Muslim sentiment arises from the same sources. That is precisely the kind of sloppy thinking that racists adopt. It is also the kind of sloppy thinking that leads many so-called leftists to support Islamists because they are anti-American. The principle of "my enemy's enemy is my friend" is responsible for many of the world's problems. Payo should look at people like Lindsey German, who is prepared to forgive Islamists their homophobia and suppression of women because they oppose the USA and Israel. What price leftist principles there?

Posted by: john.o.hart [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 26, 2006 1:41 PM

stop talking and writting don't use what is really precious for a dead man
you better pray
life will come up with a different face
pray instead of wasting time and split

Posted by: leo [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 30, 2006 2:54 PM

I believe it is very short-sighted to only look at the past 30 years in order to truly understand what is going on with this world. Allow me to first give a brief overview where all this came from, and then I will give you my opinion on what is happening.

It is clear that there is a clash between two civilization � two mentalities � two basic visions of the world. These two cannot coexist unless there is some sort of diluting, which in itself would be a disgrace to its own ideologies. On the one hand, you have the Islamic regime, which from the beginning of its inception in the 8th century, have propagated itself through persecution, whether by the sword or by heavy taxes. Within the 300 years afterwards, Islam literally wiped out countless Judeo-Christian cities and villages of its people. The mandate was clear: A good Muslim must do everything he can to make the whole world submissive to Allah through the teachings in the Koran. Those who refuse to convert are heavily oppressed or killed.
Christianity has a similar yet different belief. They are not instruments to God�s wrath and judgment, but should put their confidence in Him. Recall the Biblical verse �To whoever strikes you on the right cheek, do not withhold your left�. There should be martyr-like patience on their part, until the opposition are ashamed of their evil and finally repent. There are many writing about this thing actually happening, but we tend to focus on when patience ran out and the desire for self-defense took preeminence. Of course, the Crusades. When Islam had taken over Jerusalem, and was quickly spreading into South-Eastern Europe, the Romans relied on the sword rather than their biblical teachings. Now was this for the better or for the worse, I do not know. But it happened, and the Roman Christian not only massacred the Muslim soldiers but also the innocent, even the Middle-Eastern Christian whom they could not distinguish. Was this injustice and crime justified? Did the means justify the end? I don�t think so.
And persecution has continued ever since. Any Christian living in a majoritarily Muslim country would be able to tell of countless events of persecution and murder up till this day. Even the Christians who lived or live in relatively moderate-Islamic countries like Egypt know all-too-much of the day to day oppression and bias at schools and at the workplace. The Muslim core beliefs have not and will not change just as much as the Christian core beliefs.

This is my brief overview. Now to the present.

There is still a clash between civilizations here. There is still much oppression and murders at the hands of Muslims in Indonesia, in South Asia, in Africa, and in the Middle-East. Unlike killings that occur everywhere in the world due to money, lack of fidelity, and power, these Muslims are killing on behalf of the other persons� religion. This happens whether by beheading Christian school girls in Indonesia or by grand bombing and suicide-bombing. As it was a thousand years ago, so it is now. And once again, there is a Crusade. But there is a very strong notion of being politically correct. The West cannot generalize and say all Muslims are evil, and it cannot say Islam is evil (because of the moderate believers), therefore it must invent a concrete body to attack. I�m thinking Bin Laden and Al-Qaida. Now how can you convince your own party (namely the Judeo-Christians mostly in the West), who have never felt any of the persecution, to squash the opposing party (namely Islam mostly in the Middle-East)? Well basically, you must convince them that they are evil and need to be contained in order to maintain your own freedom of religion (and of expression, etc.). So when the West starts oppressing and suppressing with a heavy hand the Islamic countries (especially economically), it is only natural that these countries will hate the West even more, and begin to mobilize more efficiently to defeat such a powerful enemy. And of course, they will kill many and be willing to die. Now, who is on the position of self-defense and who is the attacker? I believe both parties are simultaneously both, and will remain this way. Now what happens if there isn�t enough support from the people in the West, and what happens when the leaders are terrified of the potential (and perhaps imminent) threat of this opposing ideology? It is quite possible that they begin the whole �end justifies means� process all over again.

So in conclusion, should we continue to squabble over whether or not the U.S. and the West are dishonest in order to push their agenda? I don�t think so. It is clear that they will stop at nothing, not even the dissolution of the United-States of America, in order to prevent the enemy Islamic ideology to propagate uncontrollably. It is clear that they have an astounding �the greater good� mentality. It is very possible that even at the expense of the human rights of a few Muslims imprisoned here and there, and at the expensive of temporarily (I hope) giving up the right to privacy of Americans, and even at the expense of murdering �only� a couple of thousand American in the WTC (whether they orchestrated the incident or permitted it or simply hoped that it would happen), the West believes that this is what is best for the global civilization.
We must now realize the truth and stop being sidetracked by recent events and details. What we have to do is acknowledge that there is a clash of civilizations and stop fantasizing that it will magically disappear. We must have open debates on the course of action. We can either decide to eradicate misinformation, propaganda and hatred, to dialogue with the adversary and draw a border between the two camps, and simply agree to disagree, or we can duke it our until one party is completely subdued, at the expensive of countless lives.


Posted by: drewg [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 11, 2006 11:33 PM

The wrongs committed in our name by the Blair and Bush governments cannot be tolerated. However, be it self-deception or outright lying by leaders and government ministers, the complicity by the media and the civil servants, these are all symptoms, not causes. It is human nature to use any situation to one's advantage and we should expect that very few are able to resist surrendering some of their integrity in exchange for something. Some will have no integrity to start with, only an ability to project an image of integrity. Yes Blair and Bush are particularly unsavoury examples of the political elites that they represent, but their extreme agendas are just noise on the surface of a much deeper problem that is called 'democratic deficit'. Bush and Blair are not the first leaders to lie, act undemocratically and lead us into wars of aggression.

I strongly suspect that purely representative democracies of various forms eventually and inevitably converge onto a corrupted mode of operation in which only the formal trappings of democracy are still in place but the essence of democratic choice is lost. This may come as a shock to some of course, because everyday our supposed democratic freedoms are celebrated by those who are directly and indirectly in power and the popular media that they directly or indirectly own and control. After all this is what we regularly go to war for, our democratic freedoms and values! To question that we really have these freedoms is unthinkable, right?

There is no conspiracy here. Self-deception by the elites and the intellectuals is explanation enough. It is only human to rationalise and justify the status quo when the alternatives appear threatening to one's future. They do it for the good of the country, for the benefit of all the little people who are not deemed capable of informed choice beyond selecting which wing of the political elite, 'socialist' or 'conservative', are to rule them next. Public opinion, public perceptions are to be managed for the public's own good. The intellectuals agree. Of course, just look at the common people, isn't it obvious that if they had anything to do with government we'd still have public hangings. Divide and rule..

When I was growing up in the USSR, we had compulsory voting in elections. The only candidates allowed to stand were Communist Party ones. In the next compulsory vote the best we could hope for was that the last guy would be replaced with .. another communist. That was the extent of our participation. We were told by state-owned media and by our leaders that we lived in a democracy. What is the fundamental difference between that and what goes on here? The extent of our political involvement is to choose between nominally different party candidates once every 4-5 years. But the majority of them belong to the same elitist club sponsored by big business. They are mostly very comfortable with the idea that they know best.

The media are owned and/or controlled by the same people who sponsor the political parties and their election campaigns. A huge chunk of the popular media's revenue comes from corporate advertising. Will they represent fully and fairly the spectrum of political opinion, or will they systematically tend to suppress certain unwelcome views? E. Herman and N. Chomsky did a thorough investigation of the popular media in the US in their book 'Manufacturing Consent'. Whilst the evidence their model relies on is mostly US-centric, the general principles will apply equally to the UK media. So what if occasionally a marginalised dissenting voice like that of Craig Murray is allowed to be heard. Is this the extent of what we mean by a free media? It makes as good as no difference.

Pure representative democracies really belong in the same place as one party tyrannies and absolute monarchies. 'Leaders', too, belong in the bin of history. Separation of news networks and capital is as fundamental a requirement as the separation of church and state. Distribution of information has to be the most important public service of all. The BBC is a public service only in the sense that the public pay for it. How many Britons are even aware that a democratic society in which the people are the true sovereign and author of their country's constitution on a continuous basis, already exists since over a 100 years ago? One of the most egalitarian countries in the world, with the highest per capita GDP and consistently the lowest unemployment. It does not go to war and it is not a target of terrorist attacks. If this sounds interesting, why not read Gregory A. Fossedal's 'Direct Democracy in Switzerland'. Or google 'Direct Democracy', this idea's time has come.

Posted by: Evgueni [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 19, 2006 4:32 PM

Great post, i completely agree with you. We should really be sceptical ...

Posted by: strider [TypeKey Profile Page] at March 5, 2007 10:38 PM

Perhaps the greatest conspiracy theory of them all, is that there are no conspiracies. Governing, or ruling, has always been a form of conspiracy, how else can a minority, at the top of the social pyramid, otherwise hope to control the vast majority of society beneath them?

Crudely put, society is structured like a pyramid and power is distributed in inverse proportion to the number of people occupying the various layers of the pyramid. The minority at the top have vastly more power than those at the bottom.

Posted by: writerman at February 19, 2009 6:52 PM

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