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Spooks muscle in

The result of the toner cartridge bomb plot, as with all such individual acts of terrorism, will be to further strengthen, rather than weaken, the anti-democratic arm of the state to use against its own citizens.

Whatever the true nature of the plot, said to originate from an Al Qaeda cell in Yemen, its exposure will be useful for MI5 chief, Jonathan Evans. Evans wants anti-terror legislation introduced by New Labour – 28-day detention without charge and “control orders” in particular – to remain on the statute books.

Before last May’s election, both Conservatives and LibDems attacked New Labour for this open breach of civil liberties. Lib-Dem leader Nick Clegg was particularly outspoken, condemning the “control order regime” and calling for its abolition. Now Cameron is in office, the spooks have told him they need these laws and apparently he says that if Clegg objects, the coalition is “heading for a fucking car crash".

Cameron yesterday chaired an emergency meeting of COBRA, the committee that takes over in the face of major terrorist or health threats. In parliament he spoke of the need to “cut out the terrorist cancer that lurks in the Arabian Peninsula”.

Evans, along with his fellow spooks in the Office for Security and Counter-Terrorism based in the Home Office, are lobbying the government hard to keep the laws on the books so that they can do what they want with terror suspects.

The intelligence agencies are virtually the only area of government spending not facing cuts – in fact MI5, MI6 and GCHQ have been awarded an extra £65m on top of their existing £2.4 billion budget to run their 5,700-or so agents, much to the chagrin of Defence chiefs. Counter-terrorism and spying on the population is a greater priority than the armed services, apparently.

The reality is that however much they spend, countries across Europe, and the US, are still vulnerable to terror attacks. The toner cartridge bomb exercise demonstrates that it is relatively simple to construct such devices. As long as there are individuals prepared to risk their lives – and terrorist organisations like Al Qaeda to fund and organise global networks – this cat and mouse war will continue.

Hyping their ability to prevent further attacks through big-power co-operation and more cash for spooks, is just whistling in the dark. Innocent civilians in cities like New York, London, Madrid, Mumbai and Nairobi will be the ones to suffer. And the threat is not only in the west – yesterday 52 worshippers lost their lives in yet another Baghdad bombing.

Governments who continue to fight disastrous and hopeless wars like that in Afghanistan, supposedly to root out terrorism, will never succeed in protecting their citizens from terrorist attacks. Quite the opposite.

But will they listen to the advice of former Soviet leader Michael Gorbachev who said last week that victory in Afghanistan was impossible and that the same militants terrorising Afghanistan and Pakistan today were trained by the US? Of course not.

Fighting the so called “war on terror” and protecting populations from terror attacks – real or imaginary, actual or contrived – is one of the few important roles that today’s political leaders can lay claim to – as they set about deconstructing the welfare state.

And the spooks lobby will continue to enjoy government support as long as that is the case, not only for the so-called “war on terror” but also to rapidly resurrect the role they played so enthusiastically in the 1980s, of targeting trade unionists and others fighting the actions of the government. For example trade unionists like the firefighters, many of whose personal details including home addresses, were this week mysteriously leaked to the Sunday Mail.

Corinna Lotz
A World to Win secretary
2 November 2010

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Jonathan says:

Indeed the reference to Frank Kitson belongs with the reference to Al Qaeda. The use of pseudo-gangs developed by Kitson (by the way he was on sabbatical to write his work Low Intensity Operations (1971) Gangs and Counter Gangs (1960) after Malaya; the Low Intensity during his tours in Ireland) is exactly the area of military and spook practice followed by the Pentagon and the CIA to stimulate and create Al Qaeda. [see amongst others] the idea of having their first post war ‘white wogs’ to apply counter insurgency against. This is another important reason not to refer to it as the UK. And the ONLY central agreement between the majority of Republicans and the British State – to call the six counties what it is IRISH. Demonizing the Irish, especially in England was policy. But even more it was not just within ‘Loyalism, for the pseudo-gang (military or political) has to resemble those one is – or end up – fighting as closely as possible. If one considers that these ‘gung-ho’ Officer Corp types would ‘black up’ to go out as the ‘counter-gangs’ and behead and photograph – as did Captain Robert Nairac in shooting Green in the 26 counties – those murdered then what was, and is, their ideology and training. As was continued at that time, indeed on the back of this, attacks on the organised working class and those opposed to Government policy such as Greenham Common’s Cruise Missiles.

This is all now the case, but very refined, with Arabs and Muslims, and even more useful to the spooks if they are British. In the U.S. the FBI are ‘grooming‘ Muslim youth, imbuing them with a ‘jihadist’ ideology then encouraging them, it seems right down to equipment, then arresting them as ‘home grown terrorists. According to interviews on R.T.Com the majority of cases come from this group, and involve vulnerable youth. In Turkey the knee-jerk accusation that last week's bombing was the work of PKK (The Kurdistan Workers' Party) collapsed in mid-air. Variously the secret state and any group opposed to the peace process are now in the frame. Although one has to be careful in seeing ‘individual terror’ behind each and every case of resistance or even denouncing those caused by despair, the fact is, as the above implies, any act that is not a politically clear act with a definite and extensive program tends to further the aims of the secret state looking for any pretext to increase its pressure through the press and such secret bodies as COBRA. The real fact is, following on from what is said above; if the ‘threat’ didn’t exist they would have to invent OR CREATE IT. The real target, society as a whole, needs to be ‘monitored’. While certain rights still have to be nominally conceded and abided by.

As with the Psyops units behind all the presentation, including press ‘leaks’, none of this is a sign of strength but of fear. Seeing off the challenge of the society they are now arranged against, not terror, from whatever angle is their central motive. Secondary to that is the need for the differing layers – much split on most matter except the need to survive – to either maintain their economic position in this western slump or grab other's material assets or relation. In the case of Yemen miles of press motoring without a single reference to either the British occupation or that Yemeni’s were, over a hundred years ago, the earliest group of Muslims – as a cohesive group – to come to Britain. After centuries the British upper classes, the political lick spitels and the state machine – especially the Home and Foreign Office are fully aware of the results and backlashes of foreign policy, invasion and occupation domestically and abroad.

Frank says:

Religious strife was manipulated in the 1970's in Northern Ireland specifically to develop military strategies for dealing with 'social unrest'. General Sir Frank Kitson documented his learning in his book Low Intensity Operations. These lessons are about to be applied once again on the streets of the UK, as in the Miner's Strike etc.

But this time the class war has been declared on the whole of civil society, and not just in the UK. With its lifeblood of the globalised financial system poisoned with toxic debt, Corporate Capitalism will fight viciously like any wounded/dying animal.

We, too, should learn from history and prepare. Keep up the good work AWTW.

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