The re-enactment of the attempted abduction of a military person in Marham was almost surreal and although we all knew that these were actors retracing the steps of the man who was the alleged target of terrorists it seemed too close for comfort. It has left me with an uneasy feeling that my corner of the UK has been violated.
Should we be concerned? Are the radicalised people we imagined roaming the streets of cities actually living amongst us or did they just pop down from ‘that London’ to make their snatch? Hopefully we’ll have answers but as every day passes I guess the trail goes a little bit colder. You’d think an air base harbouring the sort of equipment that routinely prosecutes our war against terrorism every day would be an obvious target for those seeking our ultimate destruction wouldn’t you? And, by default, would be wired up with all with the hi-tec spy cameras and CCTV monitors that military money could buy? But I guess you can’t think of everything although it is odd that so little hard evidence appears to have been captured by the network of roadside ANPR cameras infesting the countryside around us.
As a nation, we are one of the most highly monitored societies in the world and although our Government says little and reveals even less it is truly unbelievable the number of times per day you’ll have been captured on screen and your vehicle registration number logged onto a police computer detailing your place-time-date and direction of travel. You didn’t know? Well next time you’re trundling off in your car to the cinema or the shops take a look at the number of lamp posts and roadside pillars with a dinky little black or blue box on the top pointing up the road. That little sucker has clocked your registration number and told the police where you’re going. With the right software they can track you all the way from your home to your Granny’s house and then onto Tescburys where the supermarket will have similar kit checking up on your movements in and out of their premises and possibly feeding that info into this insidious network. It’s entirely possible that you couldn’t care less and you may argue that if you’ve nothing to hide then there is nothing to be concerned about, and that’s a valid argument. I believe that our personal liberties are being infringed by these creepy and creeping increases in our Government’s determination to keep tabs on us and while characters like the two obviously dangerous assailants continue to wander the UK without let or hindrance they might deem it necessary. But I’m not so sure. I live in what I assume is still a free country and I don’t recall ever giving anyone permission, apart from my Mum, to monitor my whereabouts and neither do I believe anyone has the right to check up on me as I go about my lawful and totally private business.