People are obviously disturbed that the London bombers were suicide bombers. This opens up a host of horrible scenarios in people’s imaginations. The police chiefs are not doing anything to help by saying that similar attacks are very likely in the near future. I hope they are not capitalising on people’s fear of terrorism, as we have seen happen so often in the past. Related to this is the fact that measures are being discussed to allow the powers that be to read all the Brit’s emails and telephone records. And then there is the thorny issue of the imminent introduction of ID cards in the UK.
If everyone is given an ID number, and a card which doubtless it will be necessary to carry everywhere sooner or later just for convenience, and if the British police can read all emails and check out all telephone activity, all it needs is a severe right-wing government to take power in the future and all the facilities are already in place for a nasty, freedom-stripping dictatorship to snatch away all civil liberties, freedom of movement and freedom of speech in a matter of minutes.
As Michael Moore has pointed put in his books and latest film, it is probably a good time to re-read George Orwell’s 1984 – I think he was trying to warn us about this continuous war > continuous fear > sweeping powers type of thing…
Here’s a typical excerpt on the manipulation of fears (substitute place names for US/UK/Iraq/Middle East as necessary):
“Winston was listening to the telescreen. At present only music was coming out of it, but there was a possibility that at any moment there might be a special bulletin from the Ministry of Peace. The news from the African front was disquieting in the extreme. On and off he had been worrying about it all day. A Eurasian army (Oceania was at war with Eurasia: Oceania had always been at war with Eurasia) was moving southward at terrifying speed. ….. One did not have to look at the map to see what it meant. It was not merely a question of losing Central Africa: for the first time in the whole war, the territory of Oceania itself was menaced.”