London police apologizes for associating Cuba with terrorism


Cuban flag

From daily The Guardian in Britain:

Met apologises for Cuban flag T-shirt worn by ‘terrorist’ during mock attack

Cuba Solidarity Campaign welcomes apology for what police describe as ‘regrettable error’ in costume choice for actor in simulated terrorist attack

Duncan Campbell

Friday 10 July 2015 15.46 BST

The Metropolitan police have apologised unreservedly for dressing one of their “terrorists” in a Cuban flag T-shirt during the recent Operation Strong Tower simulation of a terrorist attack in London.

Complaints were made to the police after the officer, who was also wearing a balaclava and carrying a weapon, was shown on national television on 1 July.

Maxine de Brunner, the Met’s deputy assistant commissioner, has written to the Cuba Solidarity Campaign, which raised the issue, to offer an official apology.

“I have viewed the footage which has concerned you and others,” she wrote. “Photographs and film do show one of the role actors wearing a T-shirt under their jacket, which shows the flag of Cuba. This was clearly a regrettable error, which I take full responsibility for.”

She added: “The role actor has been spoken to. He genuinely did not think of the significance and implications of wearing a T-shirt with a national flag on it. The impact has been explained, he is genuinely sorry and states there was no intention to cause offence or associate the Cuban people with terrorism.”

De Brunner offered a “sincere and unreserved apology” and said lessons would be learned for future exercises.

Rob Miller, of the Cuba Solidarity Campaign, welcomed the apology. “The cruel irony is that, in fact, the Cuban people themselves have been the victims of numerous terrorist attacks from US-based groups over the last 55 years, which have left 3,478 dead and 2,099 disabled,” he said.

“Too often, the small island of Cuba has suffered misrepresentation and misinformation from the anti-Cuban mass media. This incident could further perpetuate such dominant anti-Cuba smears.”

See also here.

Tony Blair caused terrorism in London, abuses it for warmongering


This video from Britain says about itself:

Send him to The Hague! Tony Benn on Blair’s ‘war crimes’ (FULL INTERVIEW)

20 December 2013

Former Labour cabinet minister and Stop the War Coalition President Tony Benn talks to the host of Going Underground, Afshin Rattansi about the alleged war crimes of Tony Blair. He shares stories of intelligence goings on during his time as an MP, featured in his memoirs, including a threat to assassinate him if he ever became Prime Minister. They also discuss voter apathy and how austerity could lead to fascism on the streets of Britain.

From daily The Morning Star in Britain:

Blair reaped a whirlwind

Wednesday 8th July 2015

THE last thing that people marking the 10th anniversary of the mass slaughter of innocent civilians in London need is a call to arms from Tony Blair.

His observation that Western countries need to have “the means of combating these people and combating them on the ground” smacks of his obsession with launching wars.

Blair says that, 10 years ago, “we faced people who had been radicalised over a period of time,” but he accepts no responsibility for involving Britain in illegal invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq and encouraging Israel to colonise Palestinian land.

He notes that there are “training camps actually in Libya not just in Syria, in Iraq and elsewhere and this threat is not going away. It will intensify in time to come.”

Would camps in Libya exist if British and French warplanes had not acted as the air force for an assortment of armed opposition groups seeking to overthrow Muammar Gadaffi?

Would Isis be in a strong position in Iraq had the US and British invading forces not destroyed the state infrastructure, including the army, leaving an assortment of weaponry available to insurgents?

Would the same death cult, together with al-Qaida-linked groups, have taken over large swathes of Syria but for Washington and London turning a blind eye to their allies Saudi Arabia, Turkey, United Arab Emirates and Bahrain sending weapons and fighters to anti-government groups?

Blair counters that countries that played no role in invading Iraq have also been affected and that “radicalisation” predated that criminal act.

Both points are true, but they don’t absolve Western imperialist leaders.

Obscurantist salafist ideas have existed for centuries, not least in Saudi Arabia which played a key role in backing armed rebellion in Afghanistan even before Soviet military support for the Kabul government.

Washington was warned then that, by supplying state-of-the-art munitions to the so-called mojahedin, it was sowing a wind and would reap a whirlwind.

US politicians thought they could turn religious extremism on and off like a tap to suit themselves.

The current global situation offers conclusive proof that they were wrong.

Yesterday’s moving commemorations across Britain of July 7 2005 involved people of all faiths and none to emphasise togetherness and mutual respect.

The timely and brave response of transport workers, police, firefighters, nurses and doctors at a nearby BMA conference who all ran towards the scenes of carnage that everyone else had been told to flee provided an example of our people at their best.

The “peace iftars” in many mosques highlight that Muslims have borne the heaviest burden of the death cult upsurge, both in lives lost and victimisation by shallow politicians.

Labour London mayoral hopeful Sadiq Khan recalls that Blair called in Muslim Labour MPs after the London Tube and bus bombings to tell them that this was their responsibility.

Khan retorted correctly that this was a problem for all of us.

When grubby politicians demand that Muslim communities atone or apologise for atrocities committed by self-professed Muslims, they must be reminded that no religion sanctions mass murder of innocent civilians.

London’s multiracial, multi-faith population suffered the hurt of July 7 2005 together and commemorated it yesterday in the same united way.

As Muslim Council of Britain secretary-general Shuja Shafi says, “The best way to defy the terrorist is to increase our bonds of unity, not to single out any one group of people for blame or opprobrium.”

Life for British Muslims since 7/7 – abuse, suspicion and constant apologies, by Mehdi Hasan. The London bombings shocked us all. But in the decade since, our community has been unfairly demonised: here.