Thursday, 25 May 2017

The Left Want Troops Out

With nauseating predictability certain lefties of the ultra persuasion have started dreaming up conspiracy theories about the presence of troops on Britain's streets in the wake of the most shocking terrorism attack in a decade, one all the more disgusting because of who was targeted. Some have been alleging, with no evidence whatever, that this is all a political stitch up designed to get the government off the hook of a difficult period that had dented its polling lead. It does rather ignore however that the government still had a polling lead. It also ignores other inconvenient facts such as where such decisions are made.

The threat level is analysed and decided by an independent, intelligence led committee, the Joint Terrorism Analysis Centre, which announces its decision regularly and is reported on breathlessly by the media, which loves this sort of thing. But it is a good and sensible process designed to take the politics out of such decisions. It may not specifically have been designed with a general election campaign in mind, but it has provided reassurance and political cover.

There are procedures in place for when the threat level is raised to critical. There have been two previous occasions, in 2006 and 2007 when this has happened and so it is not unprecedented. When the threat level increases certain public buildings are provided with additional security. Others are advised to close their doors for short periods. The agency advises government departments and other agencies and public bodies about security. It is a good and robust system.

Not that this has stopped the left from complaining. This has not come from the leadership of Labour but you can be damned sure that this is what they are thinking. We know this because various publications and allies have said so quite openly and brazenly. We were just making headway, they tell themselves, we had them on the run, and then this happened. Coincidence?

Well yes, actually. It is a coincidence.

A terrible, disgusting and vile attack took place. The Prime Minister was informed of this on Monday night and called Chauncey in the early hours of Tuesday morning. They agreed to suspend electoral campaigning. In truth he was probably rather relieved as a few days off making jam sounded good given all of the questions about the IRA and Hamas that would surely soon be heading his way. The PM needed time to deal with the crisis. In any event it was a simple matter of good taste and decency to stop political campaigning while the nation took stock, families were informed of dreadful news and the police and security services established what happened.

It quickly became clear that this was a much more sophisticated attack than the London attack of a few weeks ago. This was an active cell operating in Britain and possibly intent upon further attacks. Any government would have had to take further security precautions. Labour, when in power, once put tanks around Heathrow. And so a few troops on duty in place of armed policeman is hardly draconian or excessive.

What the lefties are worried about is that this will once again remind people of why they backed Theresa May so overwhelmingly only a few weeks ago and why they will probably do so on June 8th. Because she is not afraid to make tough decisions and does so quickly without handwringing. They are worried that this contrasts with their own leader. They are worried it will just give added resonance to his history of consorting with and excusing terrorists and of refusing to back forceful action against even vicious murderers like Jihadi John and Osama Bin Laden. They should be worried. It is why he will lose the election, although the notion that they were making the kind of headway that would have delivered power to them is fanciful to the point of one of their manifesto promises.

It may well be of course that the police will conclude quickly that the cell has been caught and that the threat has been dealt with. It may well be that JTAC will then bring the terror threat back down again. But in the meantime, with a series of big public events taking place this weekend and with others on the way as summer arrives, it is the duty of government, of the police and security services to provide reassurance and additional manpower where appropriate. Only the deranged and the bitter would question that at a time when the blood is still fresh and the anger and bewilderment fresher still. But then of course Chauncey has spent his entire career wanting troops out, or at least our troops out not so much others.

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