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Sunday, July 24, 2005

Now We Go Home

After learning that the "terrorist" they had gunned down was actually an innocent Brazilian man, Scotland Yard announced that such mistakes are justified in the war on terror.

The man was shot five times in the head at close range aboard a tuba train in south London Friday. Police had followed him to the station and tackled him when he boarded the train. Witnesses described the shoot as "execution-style."

Scotland Yard Commissioner Sir Ian Blair said the "shoot to kill" tactic was necessary against suspected suicide bombers and that cops had to "shoot suspects in the head if it was feared they might trigger devices on their body."

"The Metropolitan police accepts full responsibility for this," Blair said. "To the family I can only express my deep regrets. What we have got to recognise is that people are taking incredibly fast-moving decisions in life threatening situations. There is no point in shooting in someone's chest because that is where the bomb is likely to be. There is no point in shooting anywhere else if they fall down and detonate it. The only way to deal with this is to shoot to the head."

The last sentence reminded me of a great line from the movie Miller's Crossing, where one character is being told how to perform an execution. A veteran mobster tells Gabriel Byrne's character: "Your first shot puts him down, then you put one in his brain. Then he's dead, then we go home."

Did I mention that the War on Terror is getting really, really, really fucked up? Now we have to be afraid of both terrorists and the cops mistaking us for terrorists.

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