Monday, 5 June 2017

May’s Politicising of London Terror Attack Backfires – Call for her to Resign

(Photo credit BBC)

In an example of the worst type of political opportunism, Tory leader, Theresa May, has tried to use Saturday night’s horrific terrorist attack on innocent people, around London Bridge, to gain some political capital out of it. Election Campaigning was stopped on Sunday, but the Prime Minister used a speech about the attack and promised new powers for the police and blamed the internet for helping terrorist. She also blamed too much ‘tolerance’ of extremism in this country. Presumably, this is an attack on the Muslim community in the UK, with whom we need cooperation if we are to tackle this problem successfully.

There is no doubt that the internet has played a part in radicalising some people in the UK, and inspired them to commit atrocities. Some may have learnt bomb making techniques from the internet too. But it is pretty much impossible to stop this kind of content getting onto the internet, so you might as well howl at the moon, for all the good this will do. May is trying to deflect blame from herself and her government over recent terrorist attacks on the UK, but it doesn’t appear to be working.

It should be pointed out though, that Saturday’s attack was low tech, involving a hired van and kitchen knives as weapons. This latest attack did not have anywhere the sophistication of last week’s attack in Manchester.

Questions are being asked of May about reports that the Manchester Arena bomber, Salman Abedi, was reported to the police on several occasions over the last five years, when May was Home Secretary, and so in charge of counter terrorism operations at this time. Nothing was done about these reports, with tragic consequences in Manchester. Abedi, had been in Libya just a few weeks before the Manchester attack, why was he not monitored when he returned to the UK?

Reports are now emerging that at least one of the London Bridge attackers was reported to police two years ago, again on May’s watch as Home Secretary, and nothing was done. Obviously, ministers can’t know every detail of what is happening in their departments and agencies, but they can put in place processes that are robust and guard against lapses. It appears as though May did not do this, and we are having to live with the consequences now.

Questions are also being asked about cuts to police numbers, which amount to over 20,000 since the Tories have been in office, and for six years May was Home Secretary, and nearly a year as Prime Minister. Included in this reduction of police officers is a reduction of over 1,300 in armed police officers, precisely the ones who are meant to prevent events like Saturday night’s. May even accused the police of ‘crying wolf’ over cuts to their numbers in 2015, when she was Home Secretary. She should have paid attention, rather issuing such a complacent and arrogant speech to the Police Federation.

The Culture Secretary, Karren Brady, was unable to give the figures for the reduction in armed officers whilst being interviewed on several occasions on TV today, in something of a series of car crash interviews. Yet another gaffe by the Tory campaign team, in what is becoming a more and more shambolic effort as each day passes.

Even, Steve Hilton, a former senior adviser to ex Tory Prime Minister David Cameron, has called on May to resign over the issue. Given that we have only three days left until the general election on Thursday, this might be a little implausible, but the voters of the UK can deliver their own verdict on May’s performance, and remove her from office. It will be richly deserved.         

Meanwhile, May is suppressing the release of a report into Saudi Arabia’s funding of jihadist terror groups, presumably to avoid further embarrassment for the government who sell millions of pounds worth of arms to country and which is meant to be a strategic ally of the UK.

This election campaign has shown that May is unfit to be Prime Minister, and the Tories are a shambles of a party that should not be trusted with the nation’s security. The British public appear to be catching on to this in increasing numbers, let’s hope they are. This episode could well be the final nail in May’s coffin, and push the swing away from the Tories in the polls enough to remove them from office.

Kick the Tories out on 8 June.

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