London Telegraph

Post 9/11 America has become the land of the fearful

"There is something sinister in the term Homeland Security. Homeland sounds a little too like Fatherland for comfort, a place demanding unthinking loyalty. Very un-American, one might imagine, but then Americans are not as free-wheeling as they like to think they are. Most of them like rules, enforced with a brand of passive aggression all the more unsettling for being delivered with a smile as bright as it is indifferent.

They don’t even manage the smile at JFK when you hand over your passport. Well, some do. Things have lightened a little since the early post 9/11 era when any foreigner was an object of suspicion. The Orwellian technology remains, however: the fingerprint scanner and camera, adding you to some vast, churning database, and increasingly for those boarding flights in the United States, the hugely intrusive whole-body scanner. Land of the Free-ish."

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/september-11-attacks/8753097/Post-911-America-has-become-the-land-of-the-fearful...

MI5 told Blair Iraq was no threat to UK

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/8728371/MI5-told-Blair-Iraq-was-no-threat-to-UK.html

Britain faced no threat from Iraq when Tony Blair decided to take the country to war, the head of MI5 at the time of the invasion has declared.

Baroness Manningham-Buller disclosed that she had warned the then Labour Prime Minister that the UK would be at greater risk of terrorist attacks if he pursued military action against Saddam Hussein’s regime.

The former director general of the domestic security service, who retired in 2007, described the Iraq conflict as a “distraction” from efforts to tackle al Qaida and warned that more terrorist attacks on British soil seemed likely.

Her comments, in an interview to mark the start of her three Reith Lectures, which will be broadcast on BBC Radio 4 this week, represent the most outspoken criticisms to date of the 2003 conflict by such a senior figure in the intelligence services.

Mr Blair, and his former communications director, Alastair Campbell, have faced repeated criticism over the Labour government’s public case for military action.

9/11: They Didn't Act Alone

A few pro-truth comments after the article

For their new book, 'The Eleventh Day’, Anthony Summers and Robbyn Swan trawled through thousands of documents, piecing together a definitive account of the attacks.

On September 11, bereaved family members will mark the 10th anniversary of the cataclysmic terrorist attacks on American cities. They will gather around the pools of remembrance at the newly opened memorial, where the names of the 2,982 known victims who died on the day and in the earlier bombing of 1993 are engraved on parapets of bronze. President Obama and his predecessor, George W Bush will be on hand.

Two official inquiries have investigated the who, the how, and the why of 9/11. A decade on, however, many questions remain. Osama bin Laden and his terrorist cohort plotted and executed the operation, but did they act alone? Only days after the onslaught, President Bush's defence secretary, Donald Rumsfeld, said the terrorists "live and work and function and are fostered and encouraged, if not just tolerated, by a series of countries… I know a lot… It's a sensitive matter."

Teachers reluctant to discuss 9/11

Teachers are reluctant to discuss the September 11 attacks on America because they fear it will provoke racism and Islamaphobia in class, according to a survey.

Those in schools with high numbers of Muslim children are particularly concerned about talking about the atrocity - despite it being arguably the defining event of the 21st century so far.

Alison Kitson, faculty director at the Institute of Education at London University, which carried out the survey, said teachers should "grasp the nettle" and tackle the subject. They should credit children with more maturity, she said.

Four in five teachers (81 per cent) said that when teaching the topic, it was a challenge to break "students' stereotypes and prejudices about other cultures".

The academics polled almost 200 teachers across the country and also visited eight schools: four in London, and one each in Leeds, Worcestershire, Oxford and Surrey.

At two schools, teachers showed "serious resistance" to raising the subject, while in another there was "some resistance" from staff.

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Sticks and stones may break my bones . .

A conspiracy of dunces
London Telegraph | 12:01am BST 12/07/2008

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