ELDER PATRIOT – We already know that MI5, the United Kingdom’s domestic counter-intelligence and security agency, failed to protect concert goers from a radical Islamic suicide bomber earlier this week. But, as the investigation into how and why they missed identifying Salman Abedi has progressed we are learning just what a disgraceful mess England’s political leaders have created.
Not only did the elite security service ignore at least five warnings about Abedi over the past five years, but the result of that malfeasance is shocking. By failing to follow up on Abedi they missed the wider network of radicalized Islamists he was working with.
How could this have happened? Read on.
Since the attack that took the lives of 22 people, many of them youngsters including a little girl that was eight years of age, nine arrests have been made in connection with the plot.
Following each arrest the web of involvement grows. In the first 36 hours since the horrific bombing took place authorities have begun characterizing the network Abedi was working with as “vast”.
What in the world? They didn’t just miss Abedi, they missed the entire network of Jihadists that he was connected to and plotting with.
Just what is necessary to trigger an investigation anyway? Follow this trail while you keep that question in mind:
- During Abedi’s last year of school two youth workers who knew him phoned an anti-terrorism hotline to report concerns over Adebi’s “extreme views.”
- Two of Abedi’s friends phoned the same hotline on two separate occasions four years apart because they were so concerned about his increasingly radicalized rants.
- Abedi had been banned from Didsbury Mosque after he confronted an imam who had delivered a sermon opposing extremism. An official from the mosque immediately contacted the Home Office’s Prevent Anti-Radicalisation office to flag Abedi as a possible extremist.
- Mohammed Shafiq, chief executive of the Ramadhan Foundation said that community members had reported Abedi to authorities two years ago “because they thought he was involved in extremism and terrorism.”
- Even though Abedi was on a watch list he made frequent trips to Libya and Syria, two countries identified by both President Trump and ex-President Obama as hotbeds of radical Islamic extremism.
As this investigation continues turning up an increasingly extensive network of radical Islamic extremists one question hangs over the intelligence agencies like a black raincloud, how did they miss uncovering it earlier? This was far from the work of a lone wolf attacker, after all.
It seems the more our governments spend on surveillance the more that it is turned against us and not the radicals among us.
The question becomes even more damning with these revelations:
- Britain’s Home Secretary Amber Rudd admitted that Abedi had been known to the British security services.
- France’s interior minister acknowledged that Abedi had “proven” links with Islamic State.
- Both French and British intelligence confirmed he had recently been to Syria.
U.S. intelligence also confirmed he was on our country’s radar.
BBC’s security correspondent, Frank Gardner tried to explain the failure but he only made matters worse when he told Radio 4’s Today the reason that Abedi escaped further scrutiny was because the terrorist threats in England and throughout the broader continent are so widespread they are impossible to track.
Gardner explained, “This comes down to numbers. If they told us how many people had these extreme views just across the UK we wouldn’t sleep at night. It’s in the thousands.”
MI5 is currently tracking only 500 known threats encompassing more than 3,000 suspects. As we have learned those are only the ones that they know about. How many more are they not tracking that they know about – like Abedi – and how many are they completely unaware of.
British politicians, working in concert with European Union leadership, created the conditions that permitted these terror networks to take root and now they admit they have no way of protecting the citizens that trusted them.
Now these politicians have taken to talking out of both sides of their mouths alternately telling us they need more money for intelligence operations and that we best learn to live with terrorism as a fact of daily life.
If that’s the case, close the intel networks and let the people keep their money so that they may use it to defend themselves.
Whether they meant for this threat to grow or it is a result of extreme malfeasance and ineptitude, this much is clear in the aftermath of the Manchester bombing, Britain’s leadership lacks the will to fix it.
They continue to refuse to heed President Trump’s bold directive to 58 Arab nations last week, “Drive them out.”
Fecklessness will not win this war. Bold pre-emptive strokes will be required. In the words of Margaret Thatcher, “Now is no time to go wobbly.”
It’s past time to admit that if policies remain unchanged, Britain will never be the same.