Anorak News | Trees Have Ears

Trees Have Ears

by | 12th, September 2006

ARE we taking the War on Terror seriously?

This is not meant as an insult to the soldiers fighting a very real enemy in Iraq and Afghanistan.

It’s just that there is something about reading the Times’s news that a man has been charged with “training for terror” in the New Forest that sounds ridiculous.

The New Forest, home to ice creams, ponies and Esther Rantzen is surely no haven for terrorists.

But the Times says so. It says so on its first inside page. “Man charged with training for terrorists at New Forest site,” says the headline.

And below that we read that 22-year-old Londoner Yassin Mutegombwa has been accused of receiving weapons training in the national park.

He is alleged to have learned to bring down the Western World on weekend trips to an area near Mately Wood caravan and camping site, Lyndhurst, Hampshire.

Aside from expanding the New Forest’s economy – which until now has been reliant on pony trekkers and campers – Mutegombwa’s other notable claim to fame is that he is now the first person to appear in a British court under the new Terrorist Act 2006.

This is a big event. Not everyday does the New Forest feature so prominently in the national news, least of all for its part in the War on Terror.

And it seems to have caught the New Forest District Council on the back foot. The news sections of the council’s website makes no mention of Mutegombwa’s case.

Instead, it focuses on “the launch of the Hythe market carrier bag” (“strong, reusable, and are already proving to be a big hit”), the awarding of New Forest Marque status to New Forest Smoothies and a council “plea” for locals to not dump their dead pets in the forest.

Even if they have been blown up by Islamic extremists…

Posted: 12th, September 2006 | In: Uncategorized Comment | TrackBack | Permalink