Sunday, March 15, 2009


"Londonstani" has a superb post at Abu Muqawama about Ed Husain's The Islamist. Read the whole thing. Then look at the comments and cry.

Meanwhile, shouldn't this story be getting much more press?
Intelligence briefings for Mr Obama have detailed a dramatic escalation in American espionage in Britain, where the CIA has recruited record numbers of informants in the Pakistani community to monitor the 2,000 terrorist suspects identified by MI5, the British security service..


The CIA has already spent 18 months developing a network of agents in Britain to combat al-Qaeda, unprecedented in size within the borders of such a close ally, according to intelligence sources in both London and Washington.
An agent-running network? This is the sort of thing the Americans were constantly trying to put over on us in the 1950s and 60s and Sir Peter Wright, by his own account admittedly, spent a lot of time and effort kiboshing. It appears to be John Reid's fault, which is interesting but hardly surprising. It's much more surprising to find this in the Daily Telegraph, but there you go.

A pint of wanker goes to Patrick Mercer MP, who is quoted as basically saying he's cool with that and daddy knows best:
Patrick Mercer, chairman of the House of Commons counter-terrorism sub-committee, said: "The special relationship is a huge benefit to us. It clearly works to our advantage and helps keep the people of the UK and the US safe.

"There is no doubt that a great deal of valuable intelligence vital to British national security is procured by American agents from British sources."
World of Ken MacLeod Watch is obviously a feature we'll have to introduce here.


Tom Griffin said...

Shipman also had a piece in the Speccy on this:

I suppose the whoel thing highlights Robin Ramsay's point at the end of this post:

Anonymous said...

Abu Muq... has become and incredible cesspool of right-wing mouthbreathers, hasn't it? It used to be right-wingers, left-wingers, with perhaps a 50-50 balance between probably knowing something and ignorance; it's now 90% ignorant and proud.

I gave up commenting there a couple of months ago.


Alex said...

Yes, it's developed a fine crop of trolls and American takfiri. I think a crucial factor was that the kind of mouthbreather blogs who originally would have attacked Ex as a dangerous Arabist (remember that?) who dared to criticise the commander guy found that those of their readers who were actually in the military, as opposed to killing Kruger with their mouths in the 101st Fighting Keyboarders, suddenly thought he was the bees' knees.

So folk like "The Thunder Run" etc began regularly linking there, and hence the troll infestation. Further, they took the Yglesias line on moderation (i.e. maximal tolerance and hope for self policing) rather than the Harry's line (immoderate moderation) or the Nielsen Hayden one (social democratic liberal hegemony - say anything you like, until you like to say something that goes too far, and you get disemvowelled).

I was just thinking the other day how much I missed Phil Carter's Intel Dump. Now that was a comments thread and a half, and one that really was self policing even when Phil was mobilised. The archives have been taken down, I think since he became Assistant Secretary Carter...

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