Posts Tagged ‘Special Branch’

Could the Manchester Bombing have been Prevented?

Could the Manchester Bombing have been Prevented?

Long answer: probably, with an ‘if’. Short answer: yes, with a ‘but’. A recently-published report into the terrorism in Britain in the run-up to this year’s general election has found that the Manchester bombing might have been prevented. The review says that MI5 had planned to discuss the potential threat ...
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ClandesTime 122 - The Fake Sheikh and Red Mercury

ClandesTime 122 – The Fake Sheikh and Red Mercury

In 2004 three men were arrested in the UK for trying to buy red mercury – a trigger for a nuclear bomb – from an undercover journalist working with British intelligence. This plot inspired multiple films and TV programmes and the resulting trial cost over £1 million. The problem is ...
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ClandesTime 115 - An Alternative History of Al Qaeda: The Manchester Manual

ClandesTime 115 – An Alternative History of Al Qaeda: The Manchester Manual

The Al Qaeda training manual ‘Military Studies in Jihad Against the Tyrants’ is one of the most important documents in the history of the terrorist gang. Perhaps more than any other artefact it encompasses the absurd contradictions of the War on Terror – people have been convicted for owning a ...
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British Police began vetting film scripts in 1946 - but feared losing 'aura of secrecy and glamour'

British Police began vetting film scripts in 1946 – but feared losing ‘aura of secrecy and glamour’

In post-war Britain the Metropolitan Police were concerned about how they were being portrayed in films so they instituted a policy of vetting film scripts.  However, they were concerned that by seeking a more public profile and engaging with the film industry that they would lose the 'aura of secrecy ...
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Top Secret File on Government Censorship of Panorama

Top Secret File on Government Censorship of Panorama

In the summer of 1980 the BBC's flagship documentary series Panorama was developing a TV special about British intelligence.  This was the first film of its kind, and perhaps unsurprisingly Thatcher's government was not happy about it.  Downing Street put pressure on the film-makers via BBC Director-General Ian Threthowan, and ...
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ClandesTime 102 - Was Richard Whiteley a Spy?

ClandesTime 102 – Was Richard Whiteley a Spy?

Richard Whiteley is best known for presenting the popular afternoon quiz show Countdown, and Ricky Tomlinson is best known for starring in the popular sitcom The Royle Family.  Back in the 1970s things were very different.  This week we examine Tomlinson's recent allegation that Whiteley was a 'member' of the ...
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The Secret State Involvement in Kingsman

The Secret State Involvement in Kingsman

Kingsman is perhaps the most intriguing film of the year - on the face of it a cartoonish action comedy set in the world of gentlemen spies, but underneath it is an ultra-violent, racist, eugenicist film of dubious sexual virtue.  No government agencies were listed in the credits for the ...
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The Pentagon and the World's Biggest Film Franchises

The Pentagon and the World’s Biggest Film Franchises

The world's biggest films now regularly take over a billion dollars in revenue, and the world's biggest film franchises are multi-billion dollar businesses.  What has never been reported before is that 6 of the top 10 (and 14 of the top 25) highest-grossing film franchises have been supported by government ...
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