We know that 11 years ago, 52 innocent commuters were brutally murdered in the last multiple death terrorist attack on British soil. And yet, all this time later there is still little in the way of closure for families and the injured. So many questions remain and so few answers were ever provided.
The only Government response to this horrific attack was a 38 page ‘narrative‘ which included just 25 pages of what actually happened. No public inquiry, no detailed investigation, no explanations. It was allegedly the first suicide attack on British soil, and this claim is repeated by the press to this very day. And yet, at no stage, has the government officially ever said that was the case.
Using this pretty dismal and shallow government narrative, here are some questions to chew on as to why it may not have been a suicide bombing and why, instead, these men were simply transporting the bombs to others.
- Why did the bombers leave a handgun on the glovebox of their car? If you were going to carry out an attack would you really leave such weaponry behind? And why did they leave some more unprimed devices in their car as well when they knew they wouldn’t be going back to that vehicle?
- Would you really pop into WHSmith to buy a battery for your bomb because the other one was defunct? How would you know it was the battery that wasn’t working? How, after months of planning, would a battery – especially a 9v one which last ages, be defunct?
- If you were suicide bombers who had planned the time that you would all detonate yourselves, why would you start ringing your co-conspirators up after that time? You also knew they would be on the tube where there was no signal so what on earth would you be doing ringing apart from to leave a voicemail – but how could they pick up that message if they had already killed themselves?
- If you were a suicide bomber you, presumably, would want to cause maximum damage both in terms of infrastructure and loss of life – and – you would be in control of when to do it. If it were me, I would go for Baker Street, London Bridge, Liverpool Street, Bank, Kings Cross, Waterloo or Victoria. And I would aim to blow myself up on sub-surface lines – the really deep ones like the Victoria, Northern or Jubilee – that way I would really inflict carnage. And I would aim to be in the middle carriage so that my blast went in all directions and holding at shoulder height so that the shrapnel would inflict maximum carnage. Yet, the three that went off on the underground were away from these central hubs. One went off at Edgware Road where the train was terminating – above ground and with few passengers on it; as did the one at Aldgate. At least one bomber, according to the ‘narrative’, had the bag on the floor when they allegedly set it off. The one bomber that got on a deep line was in the front carriage. These just don’t feel like the actions of suicide bombers who would have spent a long time planning their attack and devising the best way to cause maximum harm.
- Why did the bomber who had to buy the battery and call his mates then decide to pop in to Maccy D’s for ten minutes before hopping on one bus and then change to another? Both were equally busy and, if your co-suicide bombers had already detonated themselves, you would need to blow yourself up ASAP before London locked itself down. Yet, he managed to catch the 91, hang around a bus stop for a while and then change for the number 30 before he decided to push his button.
Now I am not saying these blokes weren’t aiding and abetting terrorists and I am not saying they weren’t part of some plot to blow stuff up. But what I am saying is that none of the evidence points to this being the first suicide bombing on British soil and instead that these bombs were set off using timers and the men carrying them did not know they would end up being killed with the rest of the passengers.
Yet, why does this matter? After all, they died and lots of innocent people were murdered thanks to their actions. And to a point that is true. But when the ‘narrative’ conducted by the British government has so many ‘may have’s’, ‘possibly’s’, and ‘unknown’s’ written into it, it is easy to wonder why and what the ramifications of this possible could be.
It also matters in terms of the context we lived in then and now. Since September 11 2001, Muslims and Islam have been increasingly portrayed in the UK by more and more people as extremist and radical. The branding of these four men as home grown suicide bombers added an extra layer of fear and hatred on top of an already suspicious white population. Since this time, there has been a decade of growing suspicion fostered and ruthlessly exploited in our towns and cities . This suspicion has sowed fear and anger across the country which was exploited brilliantly by the Brexit campaigners, Britain First, UKIP and other right wing and conservative groups. It has led to a them and us culture that has increasingly turned nasty, and, may in part, have helped send the country towards the EU exit.
Is that a big conspiratorial leap? Possibly. But events link up – they can never be seen in a vacuum or in isolation and when so much death and destruction and distrust has resulted surely a proper investigation should have happened. After all, there have been scores of public inquiries, some for smaller incidents and issues. Shouldn’t the victims, families and public deserve to know the whole story?