Sunday 14th of July 2024

brave new world

‘At last history hits pay dirt. For years it was pap for television.

The nation's rulers needed scientists for guns, linguists for trade and economists for mistakes. History was for nuts and numismatists.

Now up pops Charles Clarke jingling bags of gold. The home secretary has promised the prime minister that he will lock away for five years anyone who "glorifies, exalts or celebrates" a terrorist act committed in the past 20 years. He does not care if glorification was not meant. If someone, somewhere takes anything that I say or write as encouraging to terror, even if they do not act on it, I have committed a criminal act.

Nor is this all. Lest any crackpot thinks he can dance up & down any old high street praising Hitler, Mao or Uncle Joe as outside the 20-year limit, Clarke is preparing a list of earlier terrorist acts that also render their celebrants criminals.

After "listed" historic buildings we have "listed" historic terrorisms. To the glorious chronicles of our island race, Clarke is to append an open-ended catalogue of listed events. They may include any acts of violence against people, property or, bizarrely, electronic systems anywhere in the world if intended to advance a political, religious or ideological cause or to influence a government.

I am told that this astonishing bill was cobbled together not by Clarke or the Lord Chancellor, Charles Falconer, who were both away at the time. The author was a No 10 wonk who was trying to think up "12 points" to put in Blair's holiday press conference pack on August 5.

The wording recalls the remit of the old House Un-American Activities Committee in Washington. It is born of Joe McCarthy out of 1066 and All That, with a dash of the Soviet Academy of Sciences.’

Johnnie,  Darth & Kim will love this one.

Censorship Worthy Of Goebbels

terrorising civil liberties .....

‘More than 600 people were detained under the Terrorism Act during the Labour party conference, it was reported yesterday.


Anti-Iraq war protesters, anti-Blairite OAPs & conference delegates were all detained by police under legislation that was designed to combat violent fanatics & bombers - even though none of them was suspected of terrorist links.  


None of those detained under Section 44 stop-and-search rules in the 2000 Terrorism Act was arrested & no-one was charged under the terrorism laws.’ 


Fight Against Terrorism