Anorak News | Madeleine McCann: Increasing The Fear

Madeleine McCann: Increasing The Fear

by | 12th, May 2007

mccann1.jpgMADELEINE McCann is missing. Still missing.

Today is Madeleine’s fourth birthday. And the newspapers are leading with pictures of Madeleine’s mother, Kate.

The Sun says “We share your pain”. There is nothing more terrible than this. The awfulness is all too apparent.

But what is to be gained from the Sun’s desire to turn it into a national experience? “Maddie – saddest birthday ever,” says the Sun. It invites readers to
post messages.

The Sun wants readers to place its poster in a window. “HELP FIND MADELEINE,” it says. “WEAR YELLOW FOR MADDIE.”

On the Internet the poster can be printed out in A4 or the bigger A3 size. It can be emailed: “The Sun today urges Britain to show support for the anguished family of snatched tot Madeleine McCann — by wearing yellow clothing in her honour.”

Says the Sun: “We want our army of readers to show they are shoulder-to-shoulder with Kate and Gerry McCann during the agonising wait for news of their missing four-year-old.”

The crime, the theft of little girl, is now an emotional experience for all right-minded people, and Sun readers.

But how does it help Madeleine to have a poster of her face in your car or shop window?

sun-mccann.jpgIt keeps her name in the public consciousness? But who cannot think of the child having seen her parents?

What the poster does is to spread the fear, tap parents on the shoulder and say “That could be your child.” Take care. The paedophiles are out there. They are watching. It could be you. The McCanns’ nightmare – every parent’s worst nightmare – could be yours.

But the theft of a child is a rare crime. All the more so when the thief is a stranger. Paedophiles are not lurking on every street corner. The poster creates an environment of anxiety.

But one paper is getting it right. The Independent leads with not the face of Madeleine’s mother, who, in public at least, appears a woman of admirable strength, but with Madeleine.

A stolen child. A missed birthday. A baffling mystery,” says the headline.

The paper reviews the evidence so far. That blonde woman and two men seen with little girl in petrol station: “Would abductors really stop at the first petrol station just out of the resort?” The man taking photographs of children on the beach: “And would suspects stay at Ocean Village, under the noses of police?”

Stella Cash was staying on the Mark Warner resort from where Madeleine was taken. “She was working at the Duke of Holland bar, 100 metres from the place where Kate McCann, Madeleine’s mother, walked from the bar ­ past the swimming pool, up her apartment’s 10 stone steps and through the child gate ­ to look in on her daughter at 10pm,” says the paper.

“Several Mark Warner guests dined at Ms Cash’s restaurant that night and she later drove home past the McCanns’ corner apartment at 10.50pm but no police officer has questioned her about what she saw. ‘I don’t think I saw anything suspicious but then I don’t know what they might call suspicious,’ she said.”

The police have not questioned everyone who was on the complex that night.

And now the police operation is being scaled down. “Does the decision to stop the ground search reflect a disastrous investigation?” asks the Indy. “No, says David Hill, a former area commander of the National Crime Squad. ‘There’s nothing alarming about scaling it down,’ he said. ‘If they have done the search thoroughly, there’s no point going over the same ground. You must scale that side of it down and concentrate your resources.”

This is a criminal case. It is the theft of child. The police are looking for a criminal or a criminal gang.

Things are bad enough. There is no need to increase the fear…

Posted: 12th, May 2007 | In: Tabloids Comments (62) | TrackBack | Permalink