With the plethora of news stories released last Thursday, you’d be forgiven for missing the interesting revelation that the head of MI5, Dame Eliza Manningham-Buller is stepping down. So, perhaps not as newsworthy as Blair being questioned by the police or the news that Saudi Arabia can tell the SFO what they can and can’t investigate via an ever compliant (and increasingly corrupt) Tony Blair, but now that we have digested those unpalatable tit-bits, the reasons for Dame Eliza Manningham-Buller’s surprise resignation are starting to look interesting. Two newspapers are now suggesting that she wanted to quit before new details of the July 7 London Bombings come to light in the New year, details which may have led to her being sacked. Here are a couple of snippets, First the Mail:
The head of MI5 has resigned weeks before full details of the role of her agents in a surveillance operation involving two of the July 7 bombers are due to be revealed.
And also The Sunday Times:
Sources said she had decided to quit in anticipation that she might be asked to resign over blunders concerning last year’s July 7 bombings.
However, Dame Eliza is maintaining that she agreed her resignation with former Home Secretary Charles Clarke, who was removed from his post back in May. This is the same Charles Clarke, of course, who trumpeted that the attacks came “out of the blue“, a statement which has already been shown to be completely untrue. So it will be interesting to find out just what these new revelations might be seeing as we’ve already heard about Operation Crevice and that Mohammed Sidique Khan and others had been under observation by the security services and that those security services had allegedly been warned by their American and French counterparts.
Obviously there was an intelligence failure, and it seems that the media know far more than has already been revealed but are prevented from releasing what they know.
The sources said that the agency was bracing itself for detailed disclosures about its intelligence on Mohammad Sidique Khan and Shezhad Tanweer, the two leading bombers who killed 52 people. The Sunday Times and other media are prevented by court orders from making this evidence public.
New information about the attacks trickles out from time to time, but the best way to get to the bottom of all this is to have a full public inquiry, something many of us have been asking for since the bombings but which the Government is still resisting despite an on-going campaign. When the Downing Street Website announced that it would be hosting a petition service last month, I suspended my usual cynicism and created a petition to hold a full public inquiry into 7/7. I still don’t know how close to an inquiry we are or if a petition will help but the petition is still on-line and this might be a good time to add to the pressure for an inquiry.
If you think we should have an inquiry into July 7, please sign the petition.