Magazine article The Spectator

Not Much of a Terrorist

Magazine article The Spectator

Not Much of a Terrorist

Article excerpt

From Guy E.S. Herbert Sir: Terror certainly seems to have worked on Melanie Phillips ('A terror so great we forgot it at once', 9 December). So desperate is she that we take the Islamist maniacs at their own estimation that she sets up a series of straw men and dances about them shrieking.

There were some very interesting things about the Dhiren Barot case. It wasn't a trial in the usual sense. He pleaded guilty, and the evidence against him was therefore untested.

That there are seven other men who have yet to be brought to trial explains the continuing reporting restrictions that Ms Phillips alludes to, not some extra-spooky horror we need to be protected from.

For all Barot's megalomaniac plotting and elaborate library of notes about possible targets and weapons; despite the vast complexity of his conspiracy (or power-fantasy), the prosecution admitted that this fairly secret warrior had no funding and no materials. …

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