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Friday, December 22, 2006 

Who will rid of us this meddlesome commissioner?

"Sir" Ian Blair really doesn't know when to shut up. When he's not making speeches urging 90 days detention for terrorist "suspects" be reintroduced, he's giving interviews in which he either lies through his teeth or exaggerates the "threat" without any regard for historical reality.

Defending the high security levels which have been maintained in London, Sir Ian said the threat of terrorism was "far graver" than those faced during World War II, the Cold War or the IRA.

It's not clear whether Blair is suggesting that the threat of terrorism now is worse than threat we faced during World War II, or whether he actually means that the threat of terrorism is worse now than it was in the past. If he's seriously trying to suggest that the threat we face now is worse than that from the Nazis in 1940-41, when close to 30,000 were killed in the Battle of Britain, or that from the Soviet Union, where our cities actually were potentially hours away from being vapourised, then he is a either a knave or a fool. Judging by his speech to the Urban Age summit in Berlin, he's not a fool. The only rational conclusion that can be reached is that his scaremongering is designed purely to further the police's demands for 90 days to be reintroduced, a demand that the attorney general and even Dr Demento himself have concluded there is no evidence to support.

Oh, and to add the icing on the cake:

However, he said there was "no specific intelligence" about an imminent attack but the threat was "ever present".

This really though is just a continuation of John Reid's previous remarks that there may be an attack before Christmas. We have no evidence that anyone is planning anything, but you know, you never really know with these exploding brown young men, do you?

Sir Ian said: "I'd say this: I, for my own part, I am quite confident that I will not face any kind of misconduct... in relation to Stockwell."

When questioned about his confidence, he added: "I'll just say that I'm confident, shall we leave it at that?"

Misconduct no. The fact that senior officers didn't want to "depress" their boss with bad news, or were involved in a cover-up not involving the commissioner though are two other distinct possibilities.

And he defended an anti-terror raid in Forest Gate claiming the shooting of a man during the raid was an accident.

Oh, that's all right then. The fact that the Koyair brothers were smeared relentlessly in the tabloid press while they were under arrest, most likely by those on "Sir" Ian Blair's force, with some even possibly involved in a elaborate plot to convict one of the brothers with possessing child pornography, which itself was leaked to the News of the Screws, obviously isn't worthy of a mention.

"We have learnt a lot from Forest Gate and you saw that in the way we handled the airline plot."

Yes, exaggerate wildly the true threat which those arrested posed, then quietly later release some without charge, while the authorities in Pakistan throw out terrorism charges against the alleged ringleader.

Back in March I suggested that we might be better with the devil we know, having Ian Blair as the Met's commissioner. I was wrong. There is not a snowflake's chance that anyone could be worse than this politicised, lying, mendacious shit. One Blair is bad enough, but two is hell itself.

Update: the Guardian's report on the interview is a lot more clear on what Blair actually said than the BBC report was. According to them:

"The level of threat is of an unparalleled nature and growing," he told BBC Radio 4's Today programme. "In terms of civilians - you would have to go back to probably either the second world war or cold war for that threat.

"The IRA, with very few exceptions, did not want to carry out mass atrocities, they didn't want to die, they gave warnings and they were heavily penetrated by the intelligence services. None of those apply with al-Qaida and its affiliates."

This isn't necessarily true though either. The Madrid bombings were not suicide attacks although the bombers did later kill themselves when the net had closed in, and the main explosion in Bali in 2002 was from a car bomb, although a suicide attacker was involved in causing people to flee into the path of the larger explosion. These groups can be infiltrated, and the methods used by such Islamist groups will not always involve suicide, but whichever is deemed more appropriate. Adjusting to this new threat is going to take time, but for now vastly exaggerating the true threat to the public and politicising the debate over terrorism will only increase cynicism and disbelief. This is something the government and police have still yet to take heed of.

Speaking of which:

Sir Ian suggested the threat raised questions about the need to extend further the detention period for suspects.

And we're back to square one yet again.

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Remember back in August when Sir Ian Blair said:

LONDON is returning to an era of neighbourliness and low crime in which people are happy to leave their front doors open, according to the country’s most senior policeman.

Sir Ian Blair, the Metropolitan Police Commissioner, said the work of community-based Safer Neighbourhood Teams was making people feel as safe as they did 25 years ago.

The Times

More manure comes out Sir Ian Blair's gob than a muck spreader.

BTW I tagged you...sorry!

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