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Someone tell the Heritage Foundation to put a sock in it

Washington DC’s Heritage Foundation has sent out a remarkably stupid e-mail today telling us how to deal with terrorism:

the British government must strengthen its anti-terror laws, from suspect detention to intelligence.

It is bad enough having Charles Clarke fighting against civil liberties in Britain without having the American Right poking its nose into our affairs. I am reminded of the words Charles Fox who in 1794, when warning against the suspension of Habeus Corpus, wrote:

The bill was characteristic of those violent times when, instead of being guided by reason, we were to be put under the dominion of wild passion, and when our pretended alarms were to be made the pretexts for destroying the first principles of the very system which we affected to revere.

We do not need right-wing opportunists from America campaigning against our civil liberties. Someone, please tell them to put a sock in it.

15 comments to Someone tell the Heritage Foundation to put a sock in it

  • effjay

    Will, here’s an idea, take all the advice you can get. You’ll need it.

  • syn

    According to the Jihadist training manual, an effective weapon of choice is to use the very civil liberties you wish to protect for the purpose of manipulating the political course of events which have a negative impact upon public opinion and public image. Our civil- liberty worshipping cultures have such a need to be loved around the world for our adherence to such open and giving ways.

    Here we have the enemy preaching hate and intolerance freely from mosques encouraging their followers to carry bombs in backbacks aimed at blowing-up innocent civilians while our people demand unlimited liberties to the extent we end up fighting for the enemy’s right to their civil liberties, you know, like don’t EVER dishonor the Quran or we’ll slit your throats or captured cold-blooded enemy killers receive the best that our human rights have to offer including the right to read from the very book preaching for our demise.

    Tolerance, mind you.

    This Jihadist war tactic distorts our laws and, if left unchecked, we could very well implode upon ourselves. This is indeed the ‘Clash of Civilisations, the inevitible threat of Sharia Law upon our Western civil liberties.

    After today’s second enemy attack in London in just two weeks, I wouldn’t worry too much about them right-wing opportunists from America threatening your civil liberties.

  • Verity

    syn – well posted!

  • henry

    i think that you’re going a little overboard here. every political science undergrad and thinktank across the world is vomiting solutions to terrorism these days. it’s the topic du jour after all.
    i don’t think civil liberties need to be trampled under foot in these times, but what about britain changing laws so that jihadis wanted for jihadi crimes in other countries get extradited? (to what extent is england the protector of non-citizens on its soil?)

  • Apologies for my technical ineptitude – how do you get the trackback to work?

  • Jacob

    I don’t know if Britain needs more laws, but it surely needs to fight much harder against the threat of terrorism than it has done so far.

  • Hear, hear… we indeed don’t need the kind of advice. What needs strengthening is not the laws but their implementation and the focus of the legal system on the victims in case of crime law. It seems to be a sign of an undermined and weak legislature, when faced with deterioration of one of its domains (increase in crime etc), it just calls for new laws…

  • The Last Toryboy

    There already are laws to deal with these slime, not least the Treason Act 1305, which expressly forbids sedition. (and is still on the books 😉 ) These Islamonutter clerics should be done for high treason IMO, because, old fashioned though it may sound, by the law thats what they have done.

  • Here’s another typically American suggestion: why not sue the Islamic institutions that cooperated in these outrages and take all their assets? I’d include the Saudi government, if you can get them into court. Something tells me they may have assets in Britain.

  • Nomennovum


    When you are at war, Will, your laws must recognize that fact and be able to deal with your enemies. When those enemies reside in your country and when those enemies are citizens of your country, your laws had better deal with those facts, too, or you will lose. You, as a citizen, must accept certain realities and you must sacrifice if you want to prevail. It has long been accepted that certain civil liberties may need to be curtailed in times of national crisis. Even the US Constitution accepts that habeas corpus my be curtailed in time of war. Lincoln did so, and not only did the nation survive, it became stronger. To say that the “American Right” should keep its opinions to itself when those opinions question your hard-held assumptions (that civil liberties must never be compromised for anyone under any circumstances), is close-minded, something you may believe the Right to be guilty of.

  • Nomennovum


    You said, “There already are laws to deal with these slime, not least the Treason Act 1305, which expressly forbids sedition. (and is still on the books 😉 ).”

    A law is not a law if it’s not enforced. Furthermore, trying a suicide bomber whose corpse is in a thousand pieces is a little … problematic … and somewhat beside the point. No?

  • The Heritage Foundation article, despite the footnote references, is poorly researched.

    Calling for the abandmoment by Britain of the European Convention on Human Rights is stupid. There are already “coach and horses” expetions for anything to do with “national security” or “public health” etc.

    The so called PATRIOT Act is not as repressive and all encompassing as our exisitng Terrorism Act 2000 (possession of any item, collection of any informatio which might be iof use to a terrorist) or Anti-terrorism Crime and Security Act 2001 or the or the Civil Contingencies Act 2004 Part 2 Emergency Powers (the ability to modify or repeal just about any Act of Parliament on the oral say so of a Minister) sPrevention of Terrorism Act 2005 (Control Orders – house arrest etc. without charge, evidence or trial)

    Passing even more complicated and repressive legislation is not the answer to the current or future terrorist threats, and destroying our freedoms and liberties is exactly what the terrorists want to provoke our Government into doing for them.

  • Nomennovum

    Where and when did the the terrorists ever say or imply anything like this:

    “Destroying our freedoms and liberties is exactly what the terrorists want to provoke our Government into doing for them.”

    Watching, they want you Islamic or they want you dead.

  • Osip

    Charles Fox, who was an oppositionist and a pro-French scumbag, was merely taking a contrarian position to make things more difficult for Mr. Pitt and the Burkean Whigs, in the face of a revolutionary threat that was staved off thanks to sterner domestic measures by the government. Not quite the person to quote.

  • Some of us over here have been telling these clowns to put a sock in it for some time. They don’t take a hint.