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Unanswered questions about the Stockwell shooting

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Hold up! Before you read on, please read this...

This post was published more than 13 years ago

I keep old posts on the site because I often enjoy reading old content on other people's sites. It can be interesting to see how views have changed over time: for example, how my strident teenage views have, to put it mildly, mellowed.

I'm not a believer in brushing the past under the carpet. I've written some offensive rubbish on here in the past: deleting it and pretending it never happened doesn't change that. I hope that stumbling across something that's 13 years old won't offend anyone anew, because I hope that people can understand that what I thought and felt and wrote about then is probably very different to what I think and feel and wrote about now. It's a relic of an (albeit recent) bygone era.

So, given the age of this post, please bear in mind:

  • My views may well have changed in the last 13 years. I have written some very silly things over the years, many of which I find utterly cringeworthy today.
  • This post might use words or language in ways which I would now consider highly inappropriate, offensive, embarrassing, or all three.
  • Factual information might be outdated.
  • Links might be broken, and embedded material might not appear properly.

Okay. Consider yourself duly warned. Read on...

Last Sunday’s Observer had an interesting piece highlighting some of the yet-to-be-answered questions about the Stockwell shooting, and correcting a number of the initial misconceptions (thanks to Corin for the link):

He wasn’t wearing a heavy jacket. He used his card to get into the station. He didn’t vault the barrier. And now police say there are no CCTV pictures to reveal the truth. So why did plainclothes officers shoot young Jean Charles de Menezes seven times in the head, thinking he posed a terror threat?

It’s worth reading, and the questions urgently need answering.

This 703rd post was filed under: News and Comment.

Some recently published posts

Reflecting on my first ten years as a doctor / June 2019, 8 minutes long

What I’ve been reading this month / June 2019, 6 minutes long

Californian taxis, gun ownership and democracy / May 2019, 9 minutes long

The assassination of JFK / May 2019, 6 minutes long

Crossing the US-Mexico border / May 2019, 10 minutes long

Some random old posts

Craig Armstrong: Piano Works / March 2005, 1 minute long

Blair braced for TV debate / February 2005, Less than a minute long

Thoughts on the restoration of ex-BBC Television Centre / April 2019, 5 minutes long

The A-Level Debate / August 2005, 6 minutes long

Review: Quiet by Susan Cain / November 2013, 4 minutes long

NatWest Customer Charter ad banned by ASA / February 2012, 2 minutes long


Comments and responses

Comment from Corin


by Corin

Comment posted at 22:51 on 19th August 2005.

I was rather surprised at how this article failed to register on the radar.

As far as I can tell, all of the points it raised have now been confirmed by the ITN report of the leaked material.

Furthermore it was unnerving to hear the Metropolitan Police Commisioner on the BBC justify the position of the police by saying that the terrorists had killed 52 people, whereas they had only killed one, and had even apologized for doing so.

It was apparent that he failed to add that the one killed by the police was not even English but one of those hated illegal immigrants.

In a similar vein, the BBC itself through its frontman Michael Buerke (BBC Radio 4 Moral Maze Saturday July 23[?]rd) stated blithely and without remorse that it was a pity that the man the police shot was innocent, which can only be interepreted as meaning that the BBC regards the police as having wasted their bullets (and not wasted a life).

Obviously the sheep, sorry people of England, in their loyaly to the Dear Leader, are not even thinking about questioning on what constitutional and legal basis the police have a right to deem a person guilty and carry out on the spot execution without a proper criminal trial. At least when capital punishment was in effect, one had the right to a lawyer to defend one’s-self.
Now the killing of innocents is just “collateral damage” in the war on terrorism.


Comment from Andrew Milner


by Andrew Milner

Comment posted at 06:37 on 20th August 2005.

If the Metropolitan Police would fabricate just about every detail of the Stockwell shooting, you can’t help wondering if the 7 July bombing was kosher (no pun intended).
Face it, the Vietnam War was lost on the home front, so what more logical way to keep the Brits. on side than a terrorist outrage in London. Risky strategy, because in backfired in Madrid. But this time Tricky Tony has the media under tight contro


Comment from sjhoward (author of the post)


by sjhoward

Comment posted at 19:04 on 26th August 2005.

Quoting from Corin…

Furthermore it was unnerving to hear the Metropolitan Police Commisioner on the BBC justify the position of the police by saying that the terrorists had killed 52 people, whereas they had only killed one, and had even apologized for doing so.

That’s something I very much agree with, and I was actually planning a completely separate post about this quite abhorrent comment – but never got round to it.

To say that this is just ‘one more death’ to add to the total is just wrong. There’s no two ways of looking at it. Or does this mean that the police now sanction killing in the ratio of 1:50? If so, since they claim that the 60,000,000 population of Great Britain is in mortal danger, then does this give them the right to gun down 1.2m of those citizens to protect the rest?

As much as Bush and Blair like to use terms like ‘War’, the current situation does not fit any definition of the term that I’m familiar with, and the White House have even withdrawn the description ‘War on Terror’ in recent days, due to its legal implications.

Just one further point: If the shooter had been a private citizen, whether he had thought he was working for the greater good or not he would now be detained at HM’s pleasure. How is it that this murder of an innocent citizen by the state has not (thus far, at least) resulted in even a single well-paid resignation, let alone criminal charges?


Comment from sjhoward (author of the post)


by sjhoward

Comment posted at 08:54 on 28th August 2005.

Just as a point of interest, Andrew Brown has written a column exploring similar points to the ones I was making above… albeit rather more eloquently and logically than I managed… It’s well worth reading.


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