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Friday, August 20, 2010

7/7-3 Trains at Edgware Road?

Sunday, May 07, 2006

3 Trains at Edgware Road? * UPDATED *

The events at Edgware Rd station on 7/7/05 appear mired in as much confusion and misinformation as the train times from Luton that morning.

Below are some accounts of the incident as they were originally reported:
And at 0917 BST an explosion on another Circle Line train coming into Edgware Road underground station blew a hole through a wall onto another train at an adjoining platform.

Three trains were thought to be involved and there were seven confirmed deaths so far, Mr Paddick said.

Source: BBC
Seven people were later killed in an explosion at Edgware Road Tube station at 9.17am. Three trains are believed to have been hit.

Source: Sky News
At 09:17 BST a bomb exploded on another Circle Line train between Edgware Road Station and Paddington. The blast blew a hole in a wall, and another train was hit by debris from it. A third train is also involved. Five are known to be dead.

Source: Wikinews
At 9.17am, seven people died after an explosion ripped through a tunnel wall at Edgware Road station, damaging three trains.

Source: Irish News
9.17am - Edgware Road stationPolice confirmed five people died after an explosion ripped through an underground train as it was around 100 metres from arriving at Edgware Road station. The blast blew through a wall onto another train on an adjoining platform and in total three trains were affected.

Source: Guardian

In an attempt to clarify which trains were affected I had contacted the Metropolitan Police but was stonewalled by DI Neil Smith of the anti-terrorist branch at New Scotland Yard.

The MPS website states the following:
Westbound Circle Line train coming into Edgware Road station, approx. 100 yards into the tunnel. The explosion blew a hole through a wall onto another train on an adjoining platform. The device was in the second carriage, in the standing area near the first set of double doors.

I had requested the following information:
The police website states that two trains were involved in the incident on 7th July 2005 at Edgware Road, when the blast tore through a tunnel wall into a train on an adjoining platform. Was anyone injured or killed in this other train?

So I contacted TFL to find out about this train on an adjoining platform and received the following reply:
Thank you for your request, under the Freedom of Information Act 2000, dated 5 April 2006 asking for -

* The numbers and lines of the other trains involved at Edgware Rd and whether there were any injuries or deaths on these other trains

I can confirm that, on 7 July 2005, 3 bombs exploded on the following 3 Tube trains:

* Circle line train number 204 heading eastbound from Liverpool Street station to Aldgate station;
* Circle line train number 216 travelling westbound heading from Edgware Road station to Paddington station; and
* Piccadilly line train number 331 travelling from King's Cross St. Pancras to Russell Square westbound.

The number of fatalities from these three incidents was as follows:

* 7 from the Aldgate incident;
* 6 from the Edgware Road incident; and
* 26 from the Kings Cross / Russell Square incident;

In total, four trains were damaged. Three of the trains were those where the explosions took place. A fourth train, a Hammersmith & City line train, at Edgware sustained damage, while passing Circle line train 216 when the device exploded. No fatalities or injuries were recorded on the Hammersmith & City line train.

No mention of tunnel walls or adjoining platforms! Another FOI request was then sent to TFL:
Dear Fola Olafare

Thank you for your reply to my FOI request ref: 1340405.

I had asked for the number of the other train involved at Edgware Road, which you have kindly informed me was a Hammersmith & City line train.

1. Could you please supply the number of this train.

The Metropolitan Police web site claim the following trains were involved at Edgware Road:

Westbound Circle Line train coming into Edgware Road station, approx. 100 yards into the tunnel. The explosion blew a hole through a wall onto another train on an adjoining platform. The device was in the second carriage, in the standing area near the first set of double doors.

2. Do I understand that this is not correct and that there was no hole blown through a tunnel wall onto a train on an adjoining platform?
The trouble with the 'only passengers on train 216 were injured or fatalities' answer is that it doesn't explain how Jenny Nicholson was killed travelling from Paddington to Edgware Road.
Jenny Nicholson, who was 24, was killed by the suicide bomber Mohammed Sidique Khan on the westbound Circle line service she had boarded at Paddington station. She had phoned her boyfriend, James White, minutes earlier.

Source: Guardian
From contact that I have made with a source very close to the incident I have the following:
The media reporting of the Edgware Road incident is very strange. All the TV cameras appeared at the wrong station which was the Bakerloo LIne station. There was reported a wall between the trains. Circle line trains operate in a double track tunnel where there are no walls between tracks or trains. You will not see any photos or videos of the Edgware Road incident either. They were all quickly classed as national security items. This is because of the damage done. The second car from the front having been totally destroyed including taking out the floor.

More questions that need answering are:

1. How did Jenny Nicholson die on an eastbound train between Paddington and Edgware Rd?

2. Why do the MPS claim that the explosion tore through a tunnel wall onto a train on an adjoining platform when there was no tunnel between the trains?

3. Why did early reports claim 3 trains were affected?

4. Why did the original time change from 9.17 to 8.50?


There is no tunnel wall at Edgware Rd as the MPS stated in their summary of the explosions. This is the reply I received from TFL:


Dear Miss Dunne

Thank you for your request, under the Freedom of Information Act 2000, asking for -

* The number of the Hammersmith & City line train at Edgware Road that sustained damage

* Whether there was a hole blown through a tunnel wall onto a train on an adjoining platform

I can confirm that the train number was 207 and that, at Edgware Road, there are not separate tunnels for trains heading in opposite directions.
Therefore, no hole was blown through a tunnel wall.

J7 Analysis - The Hire Cars At Luton

J7 Analysis - The Hire Cars At Luton


An Analysis of the Cars reported to be found at Luton Station

A summary and analysis of the cars reported to have been used by the alleged suicide bombers on July 7th.
The confusing saga of the cars which were reportedly used by the alleged bombers to travel to Luton has taken a lot of unravelling, since it is full of contradictions, and there are many aspects which simply don’t stand up to analysis.
The first major inconsistency is that at least two sources claim that a car was towed away from Luton station on the day of the attacks as `a matter of routine’:
“A car which could hold vital clues to the London bombings stood undiscovered in a Leighton compound for five days.

It was revealed late on Tuesday night how the vehicle had been routinely recovered from Luton railway station hours AFTER four bombers struck tube trains and a bus in the capital last Thursday.

Police and intelligence services investigating the outrages swooped on a car still parked at Luton station on Tuesday morning and linked it to the suicide bombers.

That was then linked to a second car which had been towed to J & K Recovery Ltd in Grovebury Road, Leighton

By Tuesday evening Beds Police, working alongside the Metropolitan Police and British Transport Police, sealed off a 100 metre cordon around the depot and began a painstaking search for evidence and explosives – as had been found in the Luton car.”
“A second car was also taken away from the railway station on the day of attacks as a matter of routine. It was only later police realised it could be linked with the first car. It is now being examined by police at Leighton Buzzard.”
Source: Evening Standard, July 13th 2005
Yet other sources give a different version of events:
“At Luton, a total of five controlled explosions were carried out as bomb disposal experts and forensic teams searched the rental car.The explosives found in the car were detonated separately. A second car was later recovered by police and is being forensically examined in nearby Leighton Buzzard. Police refused to say exactly where it was recovered. A Bedfordshire Police spokesman said the vehicle was not found at the train station but it was also being linked to the terrorist attacks.”
Source: Daily Record
“It appears that the four, described by security sources as "cleanskins" - with no convictions or known terrorist involvement - reached their rendezvous via two or three hired cars, one of which had been located yesterday at Luton station. Explosives were found in the car, police revealed last night. Police were also examining a second car found at the station. It was taken to a storage facility at Leighton Buzzard.”
Source: The Guardian
These reports are fairly ambiguous but give the distinct impression that both cars were found at Luton Station on July 12th – with one car examined at the scene and the other car towed away.
If the other reports are correct, what appears to be Germaine Lindsay’s Fiat had already been towed away on the day of the attacks and was not linked to the attacks, or the other car, (which is generally assumed to by the Nissan Micra rented by Shehzad Tanweer) until July 12th when they discovered and examined the Micra in Luton station car park.
So, the first question to ask is, why was the car towed away in the first place? There are many reports stating that the car was ticketed according to the rules of the car park.
“The rented car of one of the bombers, Germaine Lindsay, that was left in Luton had a seven-day parking sticker on the dashboard. A large quantity of explosives were stored in the trunk of that car, perhaps for another attack.”
It is a strange thing that it had already been towed away before any apparent link with the bombers and Luton had been established.
The second question is, if the second reports are correct, and the Fiat was taken away to Leighton Buzzard after the Micra had been examined, why should that be so? Why tow away one car that may be suspected of containing either bombs or explosives but carry out controlled explosions on another in the exact location it had been found?
The Mirror has a contradictory account of which car had a seven day ticket on the dashboard:
“The Nissan Micra rented by bomber Shehzad Tanweer was left in the station car park in Luton, Beds - where bombers Shehzad Tanweer, Jermaine Lindsay, Hasib Hussain and Sidique Khan caught a train into London - with a seven-day parking ticket stuck inside its windscreen.”
The article goes on to say:
“SUICIDE bombers planned a massive blitz on July 7 with another SIXTEEN devices, it was revealed yesterday. The Islamic extremists who killed 56 people in the London rush-hour left enough explosives, batteries and equipment in their car to launch several more attacks, said police.
Scotland Yard insiders said not all the bombs were complete but were in various stages of assembly. A senior source said: "There is more than one type of bomb. There was a huge quantity of material which, when the scientists got to work, they realised would make about 16 viable bombs ranging in weights, from about a kilo to three kilos."
Source: The Mirror
There are differing reports as to which cars contained explosives. The Daily Mail reported that it was the Micra:
“The London suicide bombers had enough extra explosives in their car to mount two further waves of terror attacks. Police are investigating the possibility that up to nine bombs, primed and ready to use, could have been left in the hired Nissan Micra used by the gang.
Forensic experts will today continue to examine the remains of the car left outside Luton station when the men caught a train to King's Cross. Bomb disposal teams carried out nine controlled explosions on the vehicle using, it is believed, a procedure for dealing with bombs already fitted with detonators.”
Source: Daily Mail
This is backed up by ABC News:
“Sources familiar with the investigation tell ABC News an additional 12 bombs and four improvised detonators were found in the trunk of a car believed to be rented by suicide bomber Shehzad Tanweer. Police believe the bombers drove the car to Luton, where they boarded trains to London.”
Source: ABC News
However, The Times said:
“More explosive material was found in the boot of a car at Luton railway station. Bomb disposal experts had to carry out nine controlled explosions. The car, a red Fiat, has been linked to Lindsay, the fourth bomber who lived in nearby Aylesbury.”
Source: The Times
The Australian newspaper also said:
“Lindsay's red Fiat was also found loaded with nine smaller bombs, leaving police speculating about the purpose of the excess explosives if the attackers intended to kill themselves.”
It is also unclear whether the contents of the cars are `explosives’ or `bombs’. The pictures leaked to ABC news show ready made bombs, and also detonators. The term `explosives’ can mean any kind of explosive material.
Did one car contain explosives and one car contain the bombs? According to ABC news it is the Micra that contained the bombs contained in the leaked ABC news photographs.
This doesn’t appear to make logical sense, though, if we bear in mind that the Micra is an extremely small car. The suggestion is that not only did 3 quite tall men manage to fit themselves inside it, but also 3 large rucksacks, plus a spare one apparently left under the front passenger seat and a large number of bombs - the exact number of which, as demonstrated by the above reports, is unclear.
A Nissan Micra seems an odd choice of hire car for what the men are accused of using it for. Some reports suggest that Tanweer was using a hire car because his own Mercedes was being fixed.
"Another bomber had just spent a large sum to repair his car. The men carried driver's licenses and other ID cards with them to their deaths, unusual for suicide bombers."
Source: TBR News
If it is true that Shehzad Tanweer was only driving the Micra because his own car was being repaired and not because he somehow wanted to put investigators off the scent (although it would be an ill-considered way of doing it, since he hired it in his own name and used his own credit card as payment) then they could have used any other vehicle to get to Luton. Nissan refer to the Micra as their ‘Baby car and John Doe II at Team 8+ points out that the boot/trunk of a Micra is 251l. [source]
Sounds quite ok? Well, a rucksack of the size the alleged bombers are carrying has a volume of around 80l. So, it would appear that you have the following piled into a Nissan Micra from Leeds to London on the morning of July 7th:
1. Three men of the size of Tanweer, Khan and Hussain
2. Three, probably four, rucksacks of the size seen on photo above (Keep in mind that the bombs were made in Leeds and apparently had to be cooled. So it seems very unlikely that Lindsay arrived with his own bomb)
3. Another rucksack:
“leaving behind in the hire car two bombs consisting of explosives packed into plastic bottles with fuses attached and packed around with nails. These were found in a rucksack beneath the front passenger seat.”
Source: The Times
4. Plus:
“Another 14 potential bomb components, including cakes of high-explosive, were found in the boot."
Source: The Times
5. Plus: cool boxes big enough to cool at least all bombs.
And for a journey of nearly 200 miles from Leeds to Luton you rent one of the smallest car that exists instead of your usual Mercedes? [Team 8 Plus ]
Even more intriguingly, it seems Hasib Hussain had access to a van…
"El-Nashar said that in June, Lindsay asked for help finding a place to live in Leeds, saying he wanted to move there from London with his wife and child.
He said he located quarters for Lindsay through his landlord and was then introduced by Lindsay to a man called Mohammed, who turned out to be Hasib Hussain, another of the July 7 bombers.
Hussain said he had a van and would help Lindsay move his belongings from London."
"Tanweer and Hussain were among people who regularly visited Khan for meetings, sometimes in a white Transit van, when he would serve them drinks and snacks on polystyrene cups and plates."
Source: The Times
If Hussain did have a van, this would surely have been a more sensible mode of transport for the assumed ‘suicide mission’.
Germaine Lindsay apparently had only himself and perhaps a rucksack to transport. If there were no explosives or bombs found in Germaine Lindsay’s car, this fits in with reports that it was towed away on the 7th as a `matter of routine’, as opposed to being towed away AFTER the discovery of the Micra. But, either way, why tow it?
The discrepancies as to the time when the second car was towed away to Leighton are puzzling. John Doe II, at Team8+ also notes
“As the explanation that the Luton car first contained explosives and then bombs while the Leighton car contained nothing is the absurdest explanation we should assume for the sake of the argument that the Leighton car contained bombs. But then why not assure that the car remains where it was parked? What sense do bombs make if they end up being towed away?
But here is a completely different account:
“A Bedfordshire Police spokesman said the vehicle was not found at the train station but it was also being linked to the terrorist attacks. He said they had received a tip-off from the Metropolitan Police and had acted to recover the vehicle”
Source: Daily Record, 7/13/05
But what kind of tip-off could that had been? And what was it based on? (Keep in mind that most likely we talk here about Lindsay’s car and Lindsay wasn’t identified on July 12). And most importantly why then was the car not treated with the caution one would treat a car that might contain bombs?” [Reference]
It does appear that the Micra, and whatever its contents were, was discovered first at Luton station. What is less clear is when and how it was linked to the other car, the Fiat. Please note that it is not completely clear that the second car is a Fiat. It has been most widely reported as such but the model (ie Brava, or Punto) does not seem to have been confirmed which is strange as preciseness of detail would help in the quest for eye-witnesses.
According to the Telegraph:
"It was early on the morning of July 7 that he drove his own car, a red Fiat Bravo, to Luton, where he met the Yorkshire trio who had driven south in a hired car."
Yet according to the Guardian, Lindsay was the owner of a different model, the Brava:
"Neighbours would see him hurrying to and from his red Fiat Brava"
Source: The Guardian
The Brava is simply a 5-door version of the Bravo, so it could be argued the two are easily confused. The Brava coupé is quite similar in shape to a Fiat Punto, so perhaps it was simply a reporter’s best guess as to what the model was. If the reports of it being the car which was towed away on the day of the attacks are true, though, then it's fair to suggest the reporters didn't even get to see it. It is quite strange how one of the cars has had its model clarified (all the sources seem universally agreed that it's a Nissan Micra) and the other one not. Most reports seem to be playing it safe by just referring to it as a `Fiat'.
Yet another oddity, which was only picked up on in a couple of reports, was that Lindsay had apparently left a gun in his car.
Antiterrorist sources say detectives found two bombs, a gun and ammunition in the boot of a car abandoned by the London bombers at Luton railway station.
Source: Evening Standard, 7/18/05
Meanwhile in Britain it emerged that police had found two bombs, a gun and ammunition in the boot of a car left at Luton train station by the bombers.
Source: NewsEditor
“Detonators and enough of the acetone peroxide-based explosive to make two bombs were found in Lindsay’s car at Luton, along with a gun and ammunition, a senior anti- terrorist source said.”
Source: The Times
Why did the police not disclose the finding of the gun if it was in the same car as the bombs? The Times, in a later article, asks the question:
“Why did Jermaine Lindsay have a gun in his car?”
Source: The Times
But fails to ask why Lindsay – or Tanweer depending on which report is the correct version – had all these extra bombs that they left in the car with no apparent extra terrorists bothering to come and use them during the five days in which they could have done so. And if, as has been widely accepted, these men were suicide bombers, they would presumably have realised they would not be coming back for the spare rucksack and everything else they reportedly left behind. Either way, there appears to be no logic in the issue of the bombs or explosives – and indeed the gun - being left in the car.
By late September, the Micra had changed colour from red to silver [The Times, Daily Mail] and it's interesting to note that the Mail, in a later article which was not made available online, described the car as being `silver blue' as did The Mirror. The Guardian reported it as a `blue Nissan Micra'.
Four different colours - how did something that could surely be easily verified become so obfuscated? If easily verifiable facts such as the colour of a car cannot be established in "the largest criminal inquiry in English history" then what hope is there for establishing other crucial details about the events of 7th July 2005?
It is also an odd thing how the police were reportedly alerted to Luton in the first place in order to find the cars. A member of the public reported the apparently suspicious sight of men alighting from a car in a car park:
"Police were alerted to the Luton car after a member of the public reported seeing four men getting out of it on Thursday morning."
Source: News 24
What was so strange about four men getting out of the car that the member of the public felt it was related to the investigation, and that the police felt it significant enough to follow up? Even stranger, why would four men have been getting out of one car, when we were told they travelled separately in two cars?
There seems only one thing to say with any certainty regarding the issue of the cars that these men are said to have used that day…that there is no consistency at all in the reporting of it. For almost every account there is another that contradicts it and a myriad of questions arising from the lack of verified information on the subject. As time has gone on it has only become more mystifying.

The economics of 7/7 and other mysteries of capitalism

The economics of 7/7 and other mysteries of capitalism explained


The economics of 7/7 and other mysteries of capitalism explained

by William Bowles

Monday, February 26, 2007 1:05 PM
‘When politicians wave abstractions around like flags—abstractions like ‘security’ or for that matter ‘freedom’—citizens should be immediately suspicious.”[1]
There is one thing we can be certain of; the capitalist state is in disarray and in crisis. With every passing day its legitimacy crumbles further. Much of its prior claim to any kind of legitimacy depended in large part on ‘defending’ its citizens against an evil foe which for almost three-quarters of a century had been Communism. And like the ‘Red Menace’ the current enemy, ‘Islamic Fundamentalism’, allegedly also possesses ruthless and cunning powers to subvert democracy and penetrate right into the heart of our ‘democracy’. But unlike the enemies of yore, so fiendish is the ‘international Islamic conspiracy’ that our civil and legal rights have to be all but abrogated in yet another ‘war’ to defend these very freedoms!
An awful irony when you consider that for over fifty years, the ‘free world’ waged a war that almost destroyed us in order, we were told, to defend us. But now, in order to justify this frontal assault on ‘democracy’ an enemy like none ever seen before, had to be created.
“It’s possible that through a tyranny of small decisions, we could make a nightmare society”.[2]
This new ‘enemy’ like the former vanquished one was not created overnight, an entire edifice had to be constructed, one piece at a time with the ‘alien’ at its heart. ‘Un-British’ in appearance and allegedly also possessing ‘un-British values’, that it to say, non-Christian and by default non-white, the Muslim fits the role perfectly. Moreover, for over a century, the Arab (read Muslim), cunning, devious and utterly alien in culture and values, has formed the basis for a mythology that found it echoed first in popular fiction and later in movies. Thus a handy ‘hook’ already existed on which to hang the current scapegoat.
There is no doubt that the corporate and state media played a pivotal role in the creation of this ‘enemy within’ but without a physical expression such as bomb plots and other increasingly outlandish acts, or more precisely, threats of attacks, convincing a public which had lived through three decades of REAL IRA bombings without feeling so threatened, it required a new strategy based upon the existence of seemingly irrational individuals, the ‘suicide bomber’, against which the only defence is, we are told, an almost complete ‘lock-down’ of the population through the use of arbitrary arrests and detentions and the use of scare tactics including alleged gas attacks, alleged home-made nuclear weapons, alleged biological agents, indeed an entire armoury of the most outlandish devices against which the only defence is, we are told, is the creation of the total surveillance state.
The media’s role in this state-inspired conspiracy was to demonise a convenient, that is to say, easily recognisable section of society, the Muslim, the new ‘alien within’. Bearded and be-robed and already ghettoised by an institutionally racist society, they became the focus of a hate campaign that has ominous echoes of an earlier period in European history. Over the past year, almost 23,000 people have been stopped and searched under ‘anti-terror’ laws, specifically Section 44 of the infamous 2000 Terrorism Act. No reason is required, merely a policeman’s whim is sufficient cause. Only 27 individuals have been charged under anti-terror laws as a result but the impact on the Asian community has been devastating, further alienating an already alienated section of society. And, as even the police themselves admit, the results have been totally counter-productive.[3]
Even assuming that the country is crawling with terrorists bent on destroying ‘Western civilisation’ (although how setting off a few home-made bombs achieves this end is never explained), the contradictions of the state’s deliberately engineered hysterical response to this alleged threat to ‘civilisation’ makes no sense unless there is a hidden agenda about which we are not informed.
If a country like the former Soviet Union, armed to the teeth and with the massive resources of the state could not achieve the alleged objective of overthrowing capitalism after seventy-five years, it is reasonable to ask the question, why has the British state embarked on a policy of creating a de facto police state replete with laws which have more than a passing similarity to those passed by both Hitler and Mussolini? Enter “fear-based security”.[4]
“Security’ is not something we can have more or less of because it is not a thing at all…[it is] the name we use for a temporally extended state of affairs characterized by the calculability and predictability of the future… The impossibility of guaranteeing security is rooted in the fact that like justice, and like democracy, ‘security’ is not so much an empirical state of affairs but an ideal—an ideal in the name of which a vast number of procedures, gadgets, social relations, and political institutions are designed and deployed”.[5]
To answer this question we have to look elsewhere than a cave in Afghanistan or a council flat in Birmingham or Bolton.
The history of capitalism is full of examples of ‘conspiracies’ allegedly hatched by fanatical groups bent on overthrowing the status quo, from the early trade unionists through to the ‘anarchists’ of the late 19th and early 20th centuries and beyond, all of which required that the full wrath of the state be brought to bear on the unfortunate individuals involved. Importantly, these ‘conspiracies’ were used as an excuse to increase the power of the state’s control over its citizens through the passing of various statutes that limited our democratic ‘rights’ to demonstrate and protest and now, it is even a crime to think about overthrowing the state.
Just as importantly, these ‘conspiracies’ were used to justify various and sundry wars of aggression, whether against Communism or under the cover of fighting Communism, against just wars of national liberation. History is littered with imperialist conspiracies invented to justify these wars including the Tonkin Gulf Incident which led to the war in Vietnam, or the mythical Soviet MiG jets allegedly supplied to the Sandinistas in Nicaragua as well as the non-existent WMDs of Saddam Hussein’s Iraq.
‘Withdrawing to the sidelines of international debate, as some advocate, or isolating ourselves from the international scene as a way of avoiding the effects of global change, would simply undermine the way we cope and adapt to that change and undermine vital British interests. Withdrawal and isolation is not the road to national liberation but to national ruin.’ ‘PURSUING AN ACTIVE AND ENGAGED FOREIGN POLICY’. Speech by Jack Straw to the House of Commons, (27/11/03)
Dig beneath the propaganda and we come across a phrase which speaks reams about the real reasons for the invention of a ‘terrorist threat’, ‘vital British interests’. But what is meant by ‘vital British interests’? Add another oft-repeated phrase, ‘energy security’, indeed once you start looking, the media and state’s public pronouncements are littered with these phrases, ‘Britain’s national security interests’, recently used to quash the police’s investigation into bribes and kickbacks by BAE Systems in Saudi Arabia.[6]
‘Conspiracy theories abound … Others claim it [the invasion of Iraq] was inspired by oil … [This] theor[y is] largely nonsense.” – The London Independent, April 16, 2003.[7]
Behind the rhetoric lies the real reason for the creation of the ‘terrorist threat’, the mundane world of economics, for ultimately it all comes down to filthy lucre. For five hundred years Western capitalism has ridden roughshod across the planet, plundering and enslaving entire continents, exterminating entire cultures and peoples’ in the pursuit of profit. It has done this, until the 20th century with virtual impunity by virtue of overwhelming military power and control of international trade, itself protected by overwhelming military force.
But following the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991, Western capitalism was stripped of its justification for continuing its pillage of the planet. It needed a new enemy behind which it could continue its operations and one effectively impossible to defeat simply because it not only has no centre, but also because ‘international terror’ simply doesn’t exist except as a propaganda message.
Thus under the guise of fighting the ‘war on terror’, new wars of acquisition were undertaken. However, these wars had to be conducted in these new circumstances largely without the support of the domestic populations.
A new climate of fear had to be engineered to justify imperialist wars of conquest. Above all therefore, what was needed were actual deeds with corpses and culprits, and what better than four ‘Islamic fundamentalists’ who conveniently perished in the carnage of 7 July 2005.
The contradictions and unanswered questions concerning the events of 7 July, 2005 are addressed elsewhere, suffice to say, there are so many holes in the official story that it’s no wonder the government has resisted all demands for a public inquiry, although if the Hutton Report is any measure of what an inquiry under the Blair government is worth, we would learn little of consequence from one and indeed, it can be argued that ‘public inquiries’ effectively quash further investigations by creating the illusion of an ‘independent investigation’.
But whether the four ‘suicide bombers’ were patsies or not (my own take on the events of 7 July), they served their purpose, namely the justification for the creation of a fear-based security state, under which even more repressive laws would be enacted and by extension the continuation of foreign wars of aggression.
It should be obvious therefore, that the ‘war at home’ and the wars conducted in foreign lands are intimately connected. In fact they are the twin components of a vicious circle, this is why the Blair government was so adamant in resisting the connection between the invasion of Iraq and the rise of ‘Islamic radicalism’, though even here it has never been established whether it’s Islam or nationalism that has fueled the rise in activism within the Asian community in the UK. And furthermore, the demonisation of Islam in and of itself is surely a major source of anger and resentment especially amongst young Asians who now suffer the multiple assaults of racism, poverty and a carefully engineered xenophobia.
Ultimately, the capitalist system thrives on the creation of crises, or what Naomi Klein mistakenly calls ‘disaster capitalism’, a new description of an old disease, for in an age of global, electronic surveillance, the business of creating the security state is itself really big business and as ever, so is war. This is good ol’ imperialism just like it used to be back when Brittania ruled the waves.
But even more important than what is in reality the privatisation of state activities, is the fact that the ‘war on terror’ represents a desperate attempt to deal with the vast over-accumulation of capital that has taken place since the fall of the Soviet Union. So great is the volume generated since the fall of ‘communism’ that even wholesale privatisation of great swathes of the ‘global commons’ cannot absorb it all.
As always, war is the ‘solution’, no matter what form it takes, and in order to justify such vast expenditures, just as Bush and Blair openly state, a war without end is required. Figures of fifty years are bandied about lest we don’t get the message.
It is within this crisis that we find the source of the ‘war on terror’ and hence the need for 9/11 and 7/7, for without such invisible ‘enemies’ how can one justify the slaughter let alone the expenditure and the creation of a vast global, electronic, corporate security state?
1. “Governing Security, Governing Through Security”, in: R.J.Daniels, P. Macklem and Kent Roach (2002), Security of Freedom: Essays on Canada’s Anti-terrorism Bill, , U of T Press, p. 85. [back]
2. “Privacy in an Age of Terror”, by Mike France and Heather Green, Business Week, November 5, 2001. [back]
3. According to a Metropolitan Police Report in the year before last September 2006, the Metropolitan Police performed 22,672 stop-and-searches under section 44. It led to just 27 terror arrests, the Met’s report says. “Its effectiveness … is in serious doubt.” The Ealing Times, 22 February, 2007. [back]
4. ‘Fear-based Security: The Political Economy of ‘Threat’’ By Margaret Beare, Nathanson Centre for the Study of Organized Crime and Corruption [back]
7. ‘AHMED CHALABI – OIL MAN IN BAGHDAD’, William Bowles (18/04/03) [back]