Scum-watch: Remove our rights, big boy!
It's difficult to tell whether the Sun actually ever dropped in its initial campaign, started in May of last year to "put an end to the human rights madness that is horrifying the country", but as with many of its short-lived campaigns which come to naught, it was dropped relatively quickly, even if the odd editorial continues to demand its repeal. Also worth keeping in mind is the fact that the Sun had a major hand in Blair's initial "the rules of the game are changing" speech, which signalled the start of the attempt to introduce 90 days detention without charge for terrorist suspects. While the country dozed in the silly season, the Scum was demanding the politicians return from their own break to "do something", which Blair duly did, without bothering to consult either Charles Clarke, the then home secretary, or the Tories and Liberal Democrats, who had been working with him on whether any new legislation.
The paper seems to have brought the big guns out for its latest attempt, no doubt in a strident effort to try to influence Gordon Brown, long rumoured to be considering a bill of rights, which he announced consultation on in today's statement on constitutional change. The main article is written by Trevor Kavangah, long the Scum's political editor and still someone with major clout in Whitehall, as well as the ear of Murdoch himself. Additionally, he's a complete cunt and is one of those arrogant hacks who thinks he knows exactly what his readers want, mainly because he tells them what they should.
BRITAIN is under siege — threatened by suicide bombers and murderers who have no fear of the law or respect for human life.
Under siege? More like pissed off that yet more incompetent idiots can bring in over-the-top security measures which only harm the economy and cause delays without doing anything to stop anyone who wants to try the same thing again. Life, believe it or not, goes on, pretty much the same as it always has and always will do.
Just about every shopping mall and sports ground is now a target for terror.
Yeah, and? Are we meant to be scared or not? Yesterday's Scum leader was about the "blitz spirit"; what is this except scaremongering?
Nuclear plants and water reservoirs are at risk of attack.
From fanatics armed with patio gas canisters and petrol cans, presumably.
And extremists are plotting to destroy the City of London — and our economy — with a nuclear “dirty bomb”.
*Yawn*. Would this dirty bomb be anything like the one that dear old Dhiren "Borat" Barot was planning? Considering how his brilliant plans for packing limos with gas canisters to destroy buildings have just been comprehensively debunked in the most public of manners, somehow I'm not particularly petrified.
Yet we ask our police and intelligence services to protect and defend us with their arms tied behind their backs.
Would those same tied-up arms be the ones which shot and killed Jean Charles de Menezes, which shot one of the Koyair brothers, and which have moved with blistering speed in quickly capturing all the apparent members of the cell which perpetrated those excuses for attacks at the weekend?
Why? Because in an act of abject surrender to the libertarian left, Labour signed up to the EU Charter of Human Rights.
The first blatant mistake. There is no such thing as an "EU Charter of Human Rights"; there is a Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, which Blair in his last act as prime minister gained an opt-out from at the recent meeting on the EU reform treaty, and there is a European Convention of Human Rights, but there's no such thing as an European Union Charter of Human Rights. The convention has never had anything to do with the European Union. This may actually be a Freudian slip which reveals the real reason that the Sun and Kavanagh loathe the HRA so much: they believe it's one and the same as the EU, which they additionally want out of.
Tony Blair ignored warnings that this would hamstring our response to organised crime and leave us wide open to abuses of British law.
And there is any evidence that it has done either? Nope, because it hasn't.
That was way back in 1998.
Long before Osama Bin Laden became a household name and before a horrified world watched his suicide killers bring down the Twin Towers on 9/11.
Nobody then imagined the explosion of violence that would sweep the Western world — from Bali to Spain and then to Britain itself.
Nor did we predict a flood of immigrants among whom would be many who wished to destroy our way of life.
None of which is anything to do with the Human Rights Act. Also, as we have seen, most of those recently convicted of terrorist plotting and offences were either born here or moved here long, long before Labour came to power, long before the Human Rights Act became law in 2000. The "flood" of immigrants has been from eastern Europe, not from the Middle East. Others sought asylum, again mostly before Labour came to power.
Or the explosion in crime that would fill our jails with 10,000 foreign criminals — one in ten of the prison population.
Crime has in fact been dropping for over ten years, but this is again besides the point.
But we knew pretty quickly that the Human Rights law was a disastrous error.
While other countries, like France, demanded opt-outs to preserve their own system of justice, Britain accepted it without amendment. The act stripped us of our power as a nation to defend ourselves from danger.
Wrong on all three counts. While we didn't seek opt-outs from any of the articles of the ECHR, we have signed but never ratified Protocol 4 and neither signed nor ratified Protocol 7 or 12. How can the act have possibly stripped us of our power to defend ourselves when we've launched a pre-emptive war against Iraq and previously derogated from Article 5 so that "terrorist suspects" could be held indefinitely without charge?
This lesson was brought home in 2000 when nine Afghans hijacked an airliner at gunpoint, forced it to land at Stansted and demanded asylum.
Jack Straw, then Home Secretary, promised to kick them out.
He was overruled.
All nine are still in Britain today, making a mockery of our support for international law and order.
Why? Because sending them home would be a breach of their human rights, even though our soldiers have risked life and limb to remove the Taliban — the reason for their flight from Afghanistan.
The real injustice about the Afghan hijackers has always been that they have been repeatedly attacked and libeled because they had the audacity to flee a country where their lives were threatened, using the only method that they possibly could. Yes, they hijacked an aircraft, yes, they took hostages, but no one was hurt or harmed in any way; they wanted freedom so badly they broke the law to do so. Despite all this, they've since been denied the right to work here, which they have always wanted so they can repay their debt to this society. That was why the case was brought last year when Mr Justice Sullivan ruled that the government was breaching the 1971 Immigration Act by denying them leave to remain, finally giving them the right, after another appeal by the government, to work.
Our soldiers may have risked life and limb to remove the Taliban, but it's been so successful, thanks in no small part to the Scum's support for the Iraq war that they've regrouped and begun their own insurgency. The other parts of the country are still unstable, ruled over by elected warlords who are still the real power brokers in the broken nation. The government itself eventually admitted that the decision made that they could not be deported back to Afghanistan was the right one - if only they'd accepted it in the first place.
This was long before 9/11, but it sent a signal to would-be migrants from every war-torn lawless state in the world that Britain was a soft touch.
Well, considering that the men were in prison until 2003 when they were freed on appeal and not given leave to remain until 2004, this is complete and utter bollocks.
Kavanagh interminably continues:
We began importing countless numbers whose first port of call was a lawyer on tap at taxpayers’ expense to spell out their human rights and entitlement to welfare.
The Twin Towers, in Tony Blair’s words, was a “wake up call”.
But Britain dozed on.
Far from spending the urgently needed cash to increase our security, we made known terrorists like Abu “Hooky” Hamza welcome here.
Abu Hamza first came here in 1979. We now know that the security services had long known about Hamza and had first contacted him, by Hamza's own account in 1997. With hindsight, it's easy to see that something should have been done about Hamza's hate preaching, along with that of others like Abu Qutada and Omar Bakri Muhammad, but there have been rumours that MI5 either recruited them or let them stay, not actually considering them a threat to this country, even if they were supporting or even fundraising for attacks overseas. The blame here lies far more with the security services and their sense of priorities than it does either with the government or the HRA.
When the London Tube bombers struck two years ago this coming Saturday, Tony Blair proclaimed a raft of new measures to reassure voters. They included 90-day detention, control orders for suspects and — most important of all — deportation of known and convicted terrorists.
Parliament rightly rejected 90-day detention; control orders, both illiberal and ineffective in equal measure were introduced; and deportations, rather than prosecuting of certain suspects have been tried, but again, rightly blocked when they are to countries where torture and mistreatment is known to be practiced. This isn't about their rights - it's about protecting our values, not giving into and joining in with abuse which goes against the human spirit itself.
When asked why he had not acted sooner, Mr Blair replied: “Just imagine the reaction if I had.”
In other words, he had failed to take the action he knew was urgently needed because it might be howled down by civil liberties protesters — whom he this week branded “loopy loo”.
Perhaps Kavangah should take this up with the police themselves, who consider that the powers they now have are more than adequate. They weren't demanding what Blair introduced in 2005 until 7/7 happened. It seems also that the Tories are now "civil liberties protesters", having had the backbone to stand up to Labour's draconian, illiberal authoritarianism.
Yet in a bizarre twist, Charlie Falconer, then Lord Chancellor, admitted the 7/7 fanatics might have been stopped if Mr Blair’s draconian new measures had already been in place.
That was in 2005. And this week we celebrate two years of culpable inaction.
As previously mentioned, hindsight is a wonderful thing. Seeing as we now know that the security services most certainly had Mohammad Sidique Khan on their radar, involved with the Crevice plot, they're far more culpable than anyone else. Falconer, not unusually, was talking out his backside. Two years of inaction? More like two years of consistent overreaction, and not introducing the right measures, such as wiretap evidence and recognising the need to prosecute rather than arbitrarily detain.
Here come the demands:
New Prime Minister Gordon Brown knows what to do. He must:
INCREASE the absurdly inadequate 28-day detention limit — preferably to 90 days as originally planned.
It's so absurdly inadequate that the full 28-days has only been used on one occasion, and that was rumoured to be because the police wanted to make a point rather than because they had to. Even the police themselves, after originally supporting the full 90-days are now questioning whether it's necessary.
OVER-RULE judges who rejected 24-hour control orders — leaving seven out of 17 dangerous terrorists free to disappear without trace.
I'm not even sure that there were any 24-hour control orders to begin with - the 6 Iraqis, some of which have gone missing, were on 18-hour curfew schemes before they were later put on 14-hour curfews after the judges' ruling. The point is that those men on these orders should be either prosecuted or released - with the introduction of intercept evidence to do so, something which the Scum isn't demanding.
DEPORT convicted terrorists to countries like Libya — even if lawyers argue they may be mistreated.
Strange how the Sun has picked Libya, whom we now have decent relations with because of the bringing in of Colonel Gadaffi from the cold, and not say, either Algeria or Jordan whom we've tried to reach "memorandums of understanding" with, which aren't worth the paper they're written on. Considering the treatment which the six medical workers accused of infecting children with HIV with have suffered while in Libya, it's still not the best advertisement for how those deported there are likely to get on. This whole demand though is bizarre; those we are attempting to deport to these countries as they are "not conducive to the public good" here have never been convicted of anything. Those who have been found guilty have years, if not decades still to spend in prison.
And BRING IN plea-bargaining so police can turn known terrorists into supergrasses like Mohammed Junaid Babar whose evidence helped jail the al-Qaeda gang who plotted to kill hundreds with massive fertiliser bombs.
The Sun making a decent suggestion?! Who would have thought it?
The British people should not be exposed to the fear of murder outlined by Home Secretary Jacqui Smith because of a shabby Human Rights Act that tolerates intolerance and puts our safety in deadly peril.
We must act to save ourselves before it is too late.
A hilarious choice of words by Kavanagh. That the HRA protects everyone from intolerance, whether it's "terrorist suspects" from torture, gives mothers the right for inquiries into how their daughters' came to be murdered, or even allows newspapers within the News International stable to attempt to overturn libel damages, rather than tolerates it is just the kind of lie that the Scum gets away with time and time again. The British people should not be exposed to the fearmongering by the tabloids, in turn rejecting laws which have done and will continue to do countless amounts of good. Repealing the HRA would make everyone of us less safe, take us further away from the justice the Scum claims to want and send a message that we're willing to downgrade our own freedom to fight those who want to destroy it entirely. In any case, the ECHR would still apply: simply that we'd have to go to Strasbourg for justice rather than to our own courts. It's the equivalent of cutting off our nose to spite our faces.
The next five pages are given over to examples of "human rights madness". The first is about the Afghan hijackers, which we've sort of already covered:
The gang demanded asylum claiming they were fleeing the Taliban. The then Home Secretary Jack Straw pledged to boot them out — instead the EU Charter of Human Rights kicked in. He was over-ruled, leading to legal action costing taxpayers millions. The nine were finally given permission to stay in the UK by the High Court in May last year.
There's the non-existent EU Charter of Human Rights again. Also, if the government had accepted the decision of the panel of adjucators in 2004, much of that cost could have been avoided. Blame the government, not the Afghans.
From what I can see, Fearon's attempt to sue was again nothing to do with the HRA, although if anyone knows differently feel free to correct me. He was given legal aid of £5,000 to sue, that much is true. As for the Scum being responsible for the dropping of his claim, it seems more likely that Fearon dropped his claim in return for Martin dropping his own attempt to sue him.
FUGITIVE Mustaf Jama — wanted over the murder of PC Sharon Beshenivsky — is a career criminal who escaped deportation to his native Somalia by claiming it was dangerous for him to return.
Yet that is exactly where he fled after brave cop Sharon, 38, was shot dead in Bradford in 2005.
Jama, 27, arrived in Britain in the early 1990s for a life of crime.
Another decision that was right. Are we suddenly going to drop decades of practice and start deporting criminals at the end of their sentences back to countries' in a state of war, especially after they've spent much of their lives here, as Jama had done? If they want to take the risk, that's up to them. Would the Scum agree with deporting criminals at the end of their sentences back to Zimbabwe, for instance, or Iraq? Both are in similar states of chaos. Unfortunately, things like this do happen, and it's terrible that justice for Beshenivsky has not been totally achieved. It shouldn't however alter our values in protecting anyone from deportation into what could be either death or mistreatment.
How many more fucking times are we going to have read this tissue of lies? It's as old as the hills. Nilsen did not win the right to receive pornography; he lost his claim at the very first step. I somehow therefore doubt that it led to dozens of similar claims. If anyone would like to take the Scum to the PCC over this, if not the entire article, go ahead.
Another load of lies. The police let the demonstration go ahead mainly because they were concerned about what the demonstrators might do if they started making arrests, in what was apart from the placards a peaceful demonstration, instead filming them and later bringing charges, with at least two of the men being convicted. The Met's statement at the time said:
"Those gathered were well natured and in the main compliant with police requests. Arrests, if necessary, will be made at the most appropriate time. This should not be seen as a sign of lack of action ... The decision to arrest at a public order event must be viewed in the context of the overall policing plan and the environment the officers are operating in. Specialist officers were deployed on both days to record any potential evidence should it be needed at any point in the future. All complaints will be passed to the public order crime unit for further investigation"
Last, and certainly least, we come to the Scum's leader, headlined PROTECT US FROM EVIL, MR BROWN:
NEW Home Secretary Jacqui Smith’s calm words only emphasised the menace facing Britain today.
Every shopping centre and sports ground in Britain is a potential terror target.
But that means any event where thousands of innocent civilians gather. Now and in the future.
That includes the remaining matches at Wimbledon where security is already intense.
Sunday’s grand prix will attract huge crowds. So will events like the Tour De France which starts in London, the golf open at Carnoustie and the Indian cricket tour.
And we haven’t even got to the start of the football season yet. Or the 2012 Olympics.
The implications of the Home Secretary’s warning are alarming. From now on, we can never take a big day out for granted.
Can you possibly guess what Wade says, after spending over 100 words pointing out all the places where the terrorists are going to set themselves on fire?
Yet she rightly stressed the need to remain calm.
Just like the Sun's entire coverage of this whole laughable incident.
We cannot be held to ransom by a few demented extremists who have hijacked and distorted an ancient faith. Britain has weathered worse threats than anything these fanatics can throw at us.
Ah, but we've still got to give up hard-won freedoms up, even so. Don't you understand?
But while we are prepared to face this threat, we must make sure our police and intelligence are properly equipped to minimise the risk.
Gordon Brown must act swiftly to change the Human Rights Act.
He must increase the period of detention from the present paltry 28 days to substantially more.
He must reverse judges’ rulings that 24-hour control orders are inhumane.
He should introduce plea- bargaining, so terrorists can be turned into high-grade supergrasses.
And most urgent of all, he must urgently upgrade powers to deport convicted terrorists.
If these vicious thugs repay our hospitality by trying to kill us, they don’t deserve the protection of our ludicrous human rights laws.
Wade has spoken. Are you listening, Gordon?