Friday, March 03, 2006

A terrorist statistic writes

Andrew Brown was stopped and searched at Liverpool Street Station.

"Finally, they gave me a pink copy of the report he had made when searching me. I should show this to other officers, he said, if they stopped me, and I wouldn't have any trouble. At this point I let myself go a little. Wasn't this ridiculous? I said. Just because a terrorist had been searched once with a rucksack that was innocent didn't mean that he wouldn't have important terrorist supplies, maps or even worse, the next time he passed a policeman. If he could show a pink slip and get away, wouldn't this just encourage him? The policeman looked at me without affection or enjoyment. Any other policeman, he said, would be entirely free to search me even if I had a pink slip. And so I went to catch my train, greatly reassured.

The two things they never asked me were where I was going (and coming from) and what was my business. I do regret this. I would have liked to have watched their faces when I said that I had come from the BBC studios in Millbank, where I was making a radio programme on the Government's plans to deal with Islamic extremism, and that the next person I will interview is Assistant Chief Constable Robert Beckley, a member of the ACPO Terrorism and Allied Matters team. But perhaps they will stop me again on Thursday, when I go in to see him."

Read the whole thing.

No comments: