The Communications Data Bill will come before the UK Parliament in November. According to the UK Government’s Draft Legislative Programme website, the Bill has two main purposes. The first is to update or ‘modify’ the Government’s procedures for acquiring data, and the second is to bring UK law in line with EU legislation. The UK was one of main movers at the EU-level to create this legislation. Spy Blog (a civil liberties campaign blog) reports that until recently the UK, despite being one of the originators of this draconian legislation, had “cried-off” implementing this directive. Under this new law data from internet email, web traffic and peer-to-peer file sharing can now be retained by the authorities (along with mobile phone records and other forms of data already covered by previous legislation). The law already allows the State to access our communications and spy on our private lives, and these changes will increase that level of control to adapt to the way the internet is rapidly developing and advancing. The Government says that these measures will enhance the fight against terrorism and will enable it to protect the public. I am not convinced that we should sacrifice our privacy and what freedoms we have in the name of the so-called War on Terror. The best way to reduce the threat to people in the UK is to oppose the militarised and aggressive foreign policy that has been pursued by Blair and Brown in the Middle-East. We shouldn’t forget these words:
“Naturally the common people don’t want war. But after all, it is the
leaders of a country who determine the policy, and it’s always a
simple matter to drag people along whether it is a democracy or a
fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship.
Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of
the leaders. This is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are
being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and
for exposing the country to danger. It works the same in every
--- Hermann Goering, Hitler’s Reich Marshall, at the Nuremberg
Trials after World War II.