Sunday, July 10, 2005

Birmingham City Centre Evacuated

I don't think anyone expected the events that unfolded last night which saw the entire city centre evacuated. At the time I was at home hearing reports on the radio, but the scale of what was happening grew increasingly clear as the night went on. Despite the fact nothing was found I don't think anyone could blame the Police for evacuating the area - they certainly wouldn't have taken the decision lightly and it was obviously better than the alternative. Apparently some people spent the night as Aston University.

At least it's good for something.

It is interesting to see the response to the terrorist attacks in this city. When going to work on Friday two police officers boarded the bus I was on, but didn't check any passes or anything. While walking around Birmingham City Centre on Saturday afternoon there was a noticeable police presence which seemed bigger than usual, although there are always police visible in the city centre especially on Saturday.

I had always thought that Birmingham would be an unlikely target for the current terrorist threat. This city may have been a target for the IRA, but they were making a political statement against what they saw as the English occupation of Ireland. The Islamist threat is surely more about making headlines by attacking the centres of the West and as such London would be a more obvious target.

Only time will tell if this analysis is correct.

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