Thursday, September 14, 2006

Police Arrest “Terrible Plot”
Plotters planned to use terrorism to create mayhem
By Arthur King

LONDON, Washington -- Special Branch officers made a stunning series of high-profile arrests today, detaining 22 leading British politicians in pre-dawn raids across the country. The arrests came after a lengthy investigation uncovered a “terrible plot” designed to disrupt international flights, deepen racial divisions within British communities, and degrade basic civil liberties.

“This is the worst plot we’ve ever seen,” said a Metropolitan Police spokesman. “The characters are leaden stereotypes, the dialogue is clichéd – particularly the monologues – and frankly, even my 12-year-old could pick holes in the story. It’s terrible.”

Special Branch say the plotters planned to spin a story about British Muslims making liquid bombs in toilets on transatlantic flights, then detonating them onboard. The “evidence” to support the story, and precipitate a spate of arrests of British Muslims, was to come from the torture of a suspect in Pakistan.

The main idea of the plot was to create hysteria among the general population. The politicians planned to exploit the ensuing chaos to place long-term restrictions on travel, to increase surveillance, and reduce civil liberties. The ultimate goal of the plot was the suspension of due process and habeas corpus.

“What we would be looking at, in their terms,” said the police spokesman, “is a world where politicians and their agents are free to spy on citizens at leisure. They can assume our guilt based on our religion, our skin colour, our politics, even our conversations, then arrest, extradite and torture those of us who are “suspects” to extract the confession necessary to prove their accusations. If you like, it is a return to Mediaeval barbarism.”

Literary connotations
Literary experts were divided on the plot, though most seemed to agree that it could be one of the worst ever devised.

“None of the terrorists had ever made a bomb. None of them had bought a plane ticket. Many did not have passports. And the explosive they were supposed to make – TATP – requires laboratory conditions to manufacture. You can’t just cook that stuff up in the bog on a plane. It sounds about as believable as a Vin Diesel film,” said Timothy Dworkin, aged 12.

Dworkin’s mate Billy, also 12, agreed that the plot was "basically crap," and argued that people would eventually see through it.

"I suppose they figured if it came off, they could keep using torture to keep coming up with terrible stories. You know – you torture someone, they tell you what you want to hear, you tell that to the public, they get hysterical, so you torture someone else, they tell you what you want to hear, and so on. But eventually people are going to see through it. My Dad did.”

However, while agreeing that the plot was weak, novelist George Orwell disagreed with Billy about its potential. “All that is needed is that a state of war should exist,” said Orwell. “The consciousness of being at war, and therefore in danger, makes the handing-over of all power to a small caste seem the natural, unavoidable condition of survival.”

Human rights groups hit out at abuse of stereotypes
Meanwhile, various human rights groups have hit out at the arrests, insisting that the evidence appears flimsy, with the police case largely based on hearsay and an irrational fear of politicians.

“There is no evidence to suggest they can get a conviction for this,” said a spokeswoman for The British Council of Politicians. “This whole plot seems to be based on gossip. People make idle threats all the time – they threaten to resign, they threaten to destroy people’s careers, screw their wives, sisters, mothers, destabilise society in order to override fundamental human rights and accumulate power – this is normal. It doesn’t mean they are going to follow through.

“The only reason that the police can make these arrests is because people are prejudiced against politicians. This story exploits stereotypes that suggest politicians will go to any lengths to maintain and strengthen their grip on power.”