Wednesday, August 16, 2006

It's beginning to look a lot like the Miami Seven

Andrew Sullivan picks up that the U.K. terror plot was light on terror and light on plot.

Craig Murray was Tony Blair's ambassador to Uzbekistan whose internal memo complaining about evidence procured by out-sourced torture created a flap a while back. He is skeptical. Money quote:

    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.
The day after the news of the U.K. terror plot broke, I wrote:

    Within days, we will learn that this cell of al Qaeda-type terrorists was nothing of the kind. We will learn that they were no more dangerous than the Miami Seven, or that guy who wanted to cut down the Brooklyn Bridge with a single blowtorch.
It's beginning to look like the skeptics were right.

Why on earth did we have to endure the ordeal of armed troops patrolling our airports? Overkill much?

George W. Bush is a disgrace.