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Thursday, March 09, 2006


Two to watch

Watch more teevee! Or at least, watch these television programmes. It is not all mind rot.

BBC2 – 7pm The Culture Show. Includes a very rare interview with Alan Moore, my personal cultural hero and writer of works such as Watchmen and V for Vendetta, and my favourite graphic novel (though he disdains the abasement before a cultural heirachy that is implicit in the appropriation of the word ‘novel’) From Hell. Jonathan Ross and Iain Sinclair are among those discussing his work.
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Channel 4 – 9pm The Road to Guantanamo. A factual drama directed by the award-winning Michael Winterbottom. Combining interviews and dramatised footage, The Road to Guantanamo tells the story of four British teenagers who were to be branded the ‘Tipton Taliban’, three of whom were imprisoned in Guantanamo Bay. Returned to the UK amid much hysteria, no evidence has been presented that any of these men were in any way connected with al Qaeda. Without acknowledging the irony, the British police detained and questioned the actors who had played the ‘Tipton Taliban’ on their return from the Berlin Film Festival where they had won the Silver Bear.
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At some points in the programme, particularly when the guards physically beat a person who was obviously autistic or mentally disturbed, I felt sick to the stomach.

However, as the programme ended the truth emerged. It was interesting to see the "macho" nature of the Tipton three, one of them saying he was stronger for the experience.
In a similar way to the shoe bomber, these were people with a criminal history when immans and mullahs worked through the prison to recruit them.

We have to look at the programme in perspective. What would you do and how would you deal with the situation? How would you "punish" or "gain intelligence" from the detainees? In every system you need people with the psychology to do these things. Just because you and I viewing the programme feel sick to the stomach, that only means that we could not work at Guantanamo. We could never break these men. If the place had been really bad with torture and so forth then these people would have broken down (and I am sure many have).
For me the bottom line is this. These people born in Pakistan and other such countries moved for economic reasons to the UK in large numbers. The UK allowed them to stay and treated them as indigenous Britons with all the rights (unlike how Germans treated for example the Turks). In return these people demonstrate some silly Danish cartoons with placcards advocating beheadings and violence. In return a great or substantial percentage of them support or sympathize with terrorist activities (many young muslims in Birmingham, Tipton, East Midlands, Yorkshire and all over the UK do). They attack the UK with suicide bombers and blow up and bring down the world trade center, and so what are we to do about this phenomenon that was imported into the UK with the immigration of these people? This is a big problem. It is similar to the problem caused by the immigration of Sicilians to the USA (that problem is called the "mafia"). Immigrants bring another culture and foreign problems and some are very significant such as this extreme religion called Islam.
First. I note that you use the phrase 'these people' repeatedly. I suggest that you get stuffed, Anon.

Second. What truth emerged? That these men refused to say that they had been broken? In your logic that makes them... what? Proud men, nothing worse. That they had a criminal past? Was it a terrorist past, or one identical to that found in the police records of thousands upon thousands of young men of all religious and ethnic backgrounds. Tell you what, if you are particularly hard of thinking, the answer is the latter.

Third. What increase in the liberty of the world is there if these men had been broken and had confessed? None. In fact, three innocent men would have been cast forever into the legal and moral black hole of Guantanamo. As no doubt many others have been. More, much of the American treatment of prisoners seems more geared to meeting American psychological needs. The same sort of prison camps as we saw in Afghanistan (outdoors, with a barbed wire compound patrolled by guards who treat the men inside like animals) are now seen in Iraq. Remember, the majority of the enlisted men in Iraq believe that they are there to get revenge for 9/11. So the prisoners are brutalised - such is the nature of revenge - and there is no administrative drive to correct this as it is a powerful means of psychologically managing the troops.

Finally. You do little more in your 'bottom line' - peppered as it is with 'these people' - then repeat the same kind of language and arguments that have been used against immigrants for generations. You admit it yourself. If you had lived at the beginning of the 20th Century rather than the 21st Century you would be ranting about Jewish immigration, their criminal tendencies, their Communist leanings, their anarchist terrorism, their alien culture. 'There people...' you would shout. If you cannot tell me why what you say now is any different, you must admit that the anti-Semites of the first part of the 20th Century were right. But you, and they, are quite simply racist bastards, no matter what spin you put on your hate.

So get stuffed. And do not come back to my blog without a name.
Nicely put. Logical thought seems to be a stranger to Mr Anonymous.
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