Are you comfortably numb?

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Follow-up to the previous post

Hello again. This post has been a long time in coming, but I'm finally getting round to it. Just thought I'd better write something about what my views are now all the truth has come out about the Brazilian man who was shot.

First of all, I'd better clarify that my strong reaction was a reaction more against people's apparent indifference to what happened, than anything else. I was worried that this incident had been accepted because of what happened on 7/7, and that no one was really going to question it or be saddened and shocked by the death of a potentially innocent man.

Given all the events that have occurred since I last posted, my views have shifted somewhat.

1) I realise that the policeman who shot the man is most probably in no way to blame whatsoever; he was acting on information being fed to him and given the circumstances he was right to pull the trigger. There is obviously doubt surrounding the accuracy of the information he was receiving, though.

2) De Menezes acted in a way that left the police with no choice but to do what they did. They already thought him to be connected to the attacks of July 21st, and not only was he wearing a jacket unappropriate for the temperature, he ran away from the police and jumped over the barriers onto a tube when asked to stop. Even if July 7th had not happened, this behaviour would be regarded as highly suspicious; but it had, and in the current climate, it was tantamount to distributing cards with 'Profession: Suicide Bomber' written on them. Many have made the astute point that had the police not shot him and he had turned out to be a suicide bomber whose death killed many on that tube, the public would now be decrying their hesitancy to act rather than their actions.

I realise these points may be surprising in the light of what I said previously, but hey, I can acknowledge I'm wrong once in a while. I still hold to the belief that we should be shocked and saddened by cases like this, and no matter how much we justify and analyse what our police did, there is no forgetting the fact that this was indeed a tragedy. Nevertheless, I do believe it was a tragedy that was necessary given the immediate circumstances. To call for the abolition of the entire principle of 'shoot to kill' is an overreaction'; however, to call for scrutiny of the intelligence processes feeding information to the police is not.


  • Funny, in Brazil they are showing pictures and people that witnessed that proves the oposite.

    The man was wearing a thin jeans jacket, not a unaproprieded one.
    He did not jump over the barriers.
    He was walking and not running (if he was running from someone he wouldnt waste time taking a free newspaper).
    He was sitting down when he was shot in his head, around seven shots.
    He was not connected to the attacks of July 21st, that was a man that had the same description and that was living in the same building the brazilian boy got out - brunet, middle high, thin (and I just described 50% of the male population).

    Aparently was a matter of 'misundestanding' eachother...

    -sorry about the bad english. hope you can understand everything.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 4:46 am  

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