If found guilty this carries a maximum sentence of ten years
The more I think about the wording of the charge the more I am fascinated by it. The 'document or record' doesn’t have to be illegal per se. Nor is there any requirement to prove that the person charged with holding the document was intending to do anything with it; just that someone, somewhere could find it useful. Given that juries are responsible only for deciding whether an accused person is 'guilty as charged' and are not empowered to comment on the sanity of the charge itself, it's all quite sinister. The fascinating part is deciding whether the thinking behind the charge is more Orwell or Kafka. My money would be on Kafka
Flipping through an on-line copy of the Chilling Terror Manual in question I couldn’t help but be struck by the parallels with that other chillingly infamous document ‘The Anarchists Cookbook’. It too is a pile of old crap and highly likely to cause the death or injury of anyone dumb to make use of its contents. So much so that there has been persistent speculation over the years that the version of The Anarchists Cookbook in common circulation was edited and promoted by a US intelligence agency.
/ scratches chin
I was intending to reproduce an example page taken from the Chilling AQ Terror Manual at this point but decided that I have better plans for the next ten years. So, I'll paraphrase a section selected at random instead
How to assassinate someone in a car
1. Stop his car with another car
2. Get out of your car and kill everyone in the other car
Note: Make sure some of the assassins can drive
Having read through the Chilling AQ Terror Manual (‘chilling’ to some, laughably crap to others) I think that it’s fair to say that there are episodes of The Professionals that contain information that is more likely to be useful to a person committing or preparing acts of terrorism. And as for that old copy of Bravo Two Zero you might have knocking around the house somewhere I’d suggesting binning that fucker tout suite
Alternatively, if you find yourself developing a taste for this kind of thing may I recommend ‘Tinman_999’’s Amazon shopping list entitled ‘Want a police file on you?’. Jihadists on a budget will be pleased to know that most of the books in the list qualify for Amazon Super Saver Delivery.
Tinman_999 is fifteen years old
And now strikes me as an excellent time to flush my browser's cache...
edit: Other bloggers (well, two of them) appear to be equally impressed with today's news - including Postman Patel and The Antagonist. A comment underneath Postman Patel's post is worth repeating here...
It is worth quoting Duncan Campbell from his original article of the Guardian on April 14, 2005 entitled 'The ricin ring that never was'
The most ironic twist was an attempt to introduce an "al-Qaida manual" into the case. The manual - called the Manual of the Afghan Jihad - had been found on a raid in Manchester in 2000. It was given to the FBI to produce in the 2001 New York trial for the first attack on the World Trade Centre. But it wasn't an al-Qaida manual. The name was invented by the US department of justice in 2001, and the contents were rushed on to the net to aid a presentation to the Senate by the then attorney general, John Ashcroft, supporting the US Patriot Act.
/ scratches chin for the second time today
No doubt, the BBC and other mainstream news outlets will be commenting on the civil liberties implications of the wording of the charge and questions about the provenance and dubious utility of the training manual at some point over the next couple of days. No doubt..
edit2: Khalid Khaliq has been released on bail. His case will be heard on July 2nd. Which ties in nicely with the second anniversary of the 7/7 bombings in which the BBC has obligingly reminded us with a cut and paste job at the end of the story about Khaliq's bail...
"Fifty-two people died and more than 750 were injured when suicide bombers attacked three London Underground trains and a bus almost two years ago"
... just in case anyone has forgotten.
The reporting of Khaliq's hearing will doubtlessly be a part of the tasteful and dignified