Sunday, July 24, 2005


A "tragedy"

I was saddened to hear of the death of Brazilian man, Jean Charles de Menezes, shot dead by police on Friday who suspected him of being a suicide bomber.

I have been reading about this over on
A Tangled Web and I think Hugh Green made a fair point:

"If you were in Sao Paolo and you were suddenly pursued by normally dressed men pointing guns at you and shouting at you in Portuguese to stop, how would you have behaved?"

A similar point was made by someone called 'Nationalist':

"mmm If I was told to stop running by plain clothes people with guns I think I might run as well. How to hell would I know if they were who they said they were."

However on the BBC's website they outline the unfortunate chain of events:

1: Jean Charles de Menezes leaves a house under surveillance and arrives at Stockwell station
2: Witnesses say he vaults the automatic ticket barriers and heads for the platforms
3: He then ran down an escalator after being approached by up to 20 plain-clothed police officers and tried to board a train
4: He apparently refuses to obey police instructions and after running onto a northbound Northern line train, he is shot dead

Bearing in mind the current political climate, why did the man vault the ticket barriers and try to run onto the train?

I still think serious questions need to be asked though about how police handled this situation. If a "shoot to kill" policy is to be enforced, the intelligence on individuals must be exceptionally accurate. Guns can't simply be pointed at people who have a different skin colour to white.

Information on this right now appears to be sketchy. I'm sure more information on this will follow. I do however feel sorry for the man's family who must be heartbroken right now.


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