Monday, May 27, 2013

UK: PM, Family Enjoys Spanish Getaway While Terror Crisis at Home is Uncertain

According to The Mirror, and as a follow-up to my posting of May 26, PM David Cameron, his wife, Samantha and their children were photographed enjoying a getaway on Ibiza as authorities arrested four other suspects in the unprovoked terror attack on Drummer Rigby which occurred on the streets of London on Wednesday (May 22), as his family mourns the soldier's being hacked to death.

COMMENT: While Mr. Cameron was in Ibiza, his grieving family and supporters traveled from Manchester to the streets of ­Woolwich in southeast London to pay tribute to the soldier who was a victim of Islamist terrorism by Nigerian-born naturalized Britons.

Sadly, Britons who participated in the march voiced their disappointment that the PM was too busy to march with them.

Unfortunately, many heads of government and heads of state are never where they should be at a time of national crisis, drawing public attention on their imprudence, disrespect, bad timing and lack of sensitivity.

Admittedly, all heads of government and heads of state deserve time off to relax as we all do, yet the PM's untimely vacation also gave the Parliament's opposition an opportunity to criticize. 

Labor MP John Mann added: “This reinforces the message that this is a part-time government. It’s inappropriate to jet off so soon after what has happened. He should be at his desk, doing his job."

In today's technological world, the reality is that cabinet ministers carry on with the government's business, as leaders respond to emails and phone calls, yet from a standpoint of political optics, it is clear that the trip to Ibiza was ill-timed, particularly considering that the PM did not know whether further attacks are expected.

Nine suspects have now been taken into custody over Rigby's murder, including assailants Michael Adebolajo, 28, and Michael Adebowale, 22, both of whom were arrested following the attack. Three of the nine have been released.

Kenyan police confirmed Adebolajo had previously been arrested close to the border with Somalia, where the al-Qaeda linked militant group, al-Shabab, is based.