I couldn’t help thinking, as Blair announced the beginning of a phased withdrawal from Iraq (too little, too late and too slow – but better than nothing) that this was two finger to Brown. For had Brown’s 100 days started with an announcement of withdrawal he would have had instant double-bounce. Sooooooo – that explains the timing!
Sponsored (which means basically booked the room) for the Centre Forum debate ‘Security versus Liberty’ where Nick Clegg (Home Affairs No 1) was able to trail our opposition to the extension of control orders before the debate tomorrow.
When introduced in 2005 as an emergency – the Government promised (oh when will I learn) that they would have a proper review of them one year later. One year later they didn’t review them – but extended them with the promise of a review one year on. One year on they didn’t review them – they just wanted to extend them.
So – we are going to stamp our feet about this and vote against. They will still win – of course – they have a majority. But it is wrong to incarcerate people without trial without making all best efforts to bring them to trial whenever practical. And there’s much more the Government could and should be doing rather than simply falling back on the easy option of locking people up without having to prove their case against them in a proper court case. Examples of what they could be doing include allowing phone-tap and other intercept evidence to be used in court and also the use of questioning after people have been charged.