Anorak News | Starting Guns

Starting Guns

by | 10th, August 2004

‘THE British Olympic shooting team’s abilities to shoot a bullet into a pinhead-sized target with unerring accuracy should mean that security concerns at this summer’s games are at a minimum.

‘Look out, Tony – he’s got a javelin!’

Only the most suicidal terrorist would dare approach British Olympians, among whom are any number of crack shots with gun or bow and arrow?

Add to the shooters the javelin throwers, judo exponents, wrestlers, fencers and ankle-smashing hockey players…and team GB looks more than capable of handling itself in a fight.

But the Greeks are a cautious bunch and the Times reports that they have given permission for British security agents to be armed during the Athens games.

The Greeks have waived a law that forbids foreign personnel from carrying weapons, and now security staff protecting the British, American and Israeli squads will carry live ammunition.

The British Olympic team has a massive special security squad of 130 Scotland Yard staff, but the paper understands that, unlike the Americans, these cops will not be providing close armed protection for athletes, but just for visiting dignitaries.

While the American track team jostles for position on the starting line with sunglass-wearing agents talking into their sleeves, the British cops will be sitting in the stands protecting the likes of Tony Blair.

And do not doubt that dear Tony will be in Athens. If there’s one thing Tony knows, it is how to have a cracking holiday.

Indeed, since his scramble to the top of the political ladder, the Independent says Tony has taken 18 trips where he and his family have “enjoyed the hospitality of well-connected friends who do not expect to be paid for hosting the package-tour-shy occupants of No.10”.

And that’s a shame since the Indy also reports that while Tony is enjoying another freebie in Athens – in between staying at Cliff Richard’s place in Barbados and Silvio Berlusconi’s villa in Sardinia – British travel agents are in the doldrums.

With just three days to go before the big off, only 3 million of the original 5.3 million tickets for the Games have been sold.

The rest – the ‘unsold’ – have been taken up by the Blairs and their entourage, cops on a busman’s holiday and terrorists eager to say, “I was there”.’

Posted: 10th, August 2004 | In: Broadsheets Comment | TrackBack | Permalink