Last year, London police obtained credible information that Muslims were building chemical weapons in East London. As it turned out, there were no chemical weapons at the site. The Independent Police Complaints Commission (“IPCC”), obviously called based upon Muslim complaints, reached a few interesting conclusions. To appreciate just how interesting these conclusions are, you have to understand that the IPCC has acknowledged (a) that there was nothing faulty about the pre-raid intelligence, although it ultimately proved wrong; and (b) that the police engaged in the raid therefore believed that their lives were in extreme danger.
Despite these underlying facts, the IPCC has nevertheless concluded that the police erred in conducting a raid focused on a reasonable threat, rather than focused on the probability that the police were in error. Yes, I know that sounds illogical but that, in fact, is precisely what the IPCC concluded:
Having reviewed the intelligence about a chemical bomb, the IPCC said it did not criticise the Metropolitan Police for mounting the raid but it should have prepared better for the possibility that the intelligence might have been wrong.
Yeah, that’s always how we plan raids on rabbit warrens credibly believed to be housing chemical weapons. But wait! There’s more. It also turns out that the police engaged on this apparently very dangerous raid weren’t gentle and sensitive enough but, instead, were aggressive:
The IPCC concluded yesterday that officers in the raid in Lansdown Road, Forest Gate, on June 2 used “very aggressive tactics” that they believed were necessary given the danger from the bomb they believed they faced. Three allegations of assault — on each of the two brothers and a neighbour — were investigated but the Crown Prosecution Service found insufficient evidence to justify charges.
Only the brothers were arrested, yet all were taken to a police station. The IPCC said this was both “inappropriate and insensitive”. The report also criticised the detention of one of the arrested brothers, Abul Koyair, who was held by police for several days. Neither was charged.
God, you can practically smell that offensive police testosterone in the air, can’t you?
Based on these facts, the IPCC insists that the police issue a high profile apology to the Muslims involved — despite the fact that the police have already issued three apologies to the Muslims involved (which is at least two more than you’d ever get in 99% of other countries in the world):
Deborah Glass, an IPCC commissioner, said: “The level of force has to be judged in the light of the officers’ beliefs that they were facing an extreme threat not just to themselves but to the public.
“But where as a result of a high-profile operation innocent people are injured or branded as terrorists, the police should make an equally high-profile public apology.”
Deputy Assistant Commissioner Alf Hitchcock, of the Metropolitan Police, said: “We have apologised on three previous occasions and I reiterate that today. I think we need to move on from apologising over and over again.”
Deputy Assistant Commissioner Alf Hitchcock is deluded himself if he thinks anything other than complete abasement will allow the police to “move on from apologizing over and over again.”
I should add that I would never condone police brutality. What got me about this story is the fact that the same report in which the watchdog agency castigates the police and demandes an apology acknowledges that the polices’ behavior was reasonable at all times given the information they had and the circumstances in which they were operating. Those facts, coupled with the multiple apologies already issued, indicates that this is a political, possibly dhimmi-driven, demand that has nothing to do with actual police conduct.