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Tuesday, January 03, 2006 

See a Brazilian wearing a suspiciously thin coat? Report him!

It's been all of a week since the last scaremongering measure, so it's obviously time for another exercise. This one involves telling the public to report anything or anyone suspicious: (which usually results in numerous calls about "darkies", as even the police admit)

Scotland Yard has urged the public to remain vigilant to the threat of terrorism, with a new campaign that highlights the risk of further attacks.

The campaign's message is: "Terrorists won't succeed if someone reports suspicious activity."

Almost six months since the London bombings, it urges people to report suspicious bags, vehicles or behaviour.

The Metropolitan Police said it was not in response to a specific threat but "we cannot afford to be complacent."

The head of Scotland Yard's Anti-Terrorist Branch, DAC Peter Clarke, said: "Everyone who lives in London, or visits the city for work or pleasure, has a role to play in making it as difficult as we can for terrorists to operate here.

Another poster encourages retail and bank staff to be aware of fraudulent transactions that may be linked to terrorist fundraising and a fifth focuses on the need for vigilance within the river and marine environment.

The campaign was developed with British Transport Police, City of London Police, Transport for London and the Mayor's Office.

River and marine environment? I guess we can assume that terrorists have acquired the equipment necessary to breathe underwater for long periods, where they are busy concoting huge amounts of ricin to smear on doorknobs all across London.

To be serious and not flippant for a moment, obviously there is a degree of threat to London, as there is to any major city in Britain and indeed most countries around the world. What should be also pointed out however is that while 56 people died on July the 7th, at least 35 people were stabbed across London on New Year's Eve. Maybe if we stopped constantly looking for the masked individual who isn't there for half an hour, we might start looking at ourselves and our problems with drink and violent crime, and realise it is a much more endemic problem than Islamic terrorism is.

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