The Guardian reports: David Cameron has been drawn into the controversy over the treatment of David Miranda after Downing Street confirmed that the prime minister was given advanced notice that police planned to detain the partner of Glenn Greenwald at Heathrow airport.
As the Home Office launched an aggressive offensive to justify the detention of Miranda, No 10 said the prime minister was informed of the planned police action.
A Downing Street source said: “We were kept abreast in the usual way. We do not direct police investigations.”
The confirmation from Downing Street, which follows a statement from the White House that it was given a “heads-up” about the detention of Miranda, came shortly after the Home Office suggested that Greenwald’s partner possessed “highly sensitive stolen information that would help terrorism”.
A Home Office spokesperson said: “The government and the police have a duty to protect the public and our national security. If the police believe that an individual is in possession of highly sensitive stolen information that would help terrorism, then they should act and the law provides them with a framework to do that. Those who oppose this sort of action need to think about what they are condoning. This is an ongoing police inquiry so will not comment on the specifics.”
In the duplicitous manner that seems to have become second-nature to government officials in this era, we are being told in a roundabout way that opposing Miranda’s detention is somehow supporting terrorism — think about what you are condoning, the British official ominously suggests.
It is the official himself who needs to think about what we are condoning.
To support Edward Snowden and those who have helped disseminate the information which he leaked, is to support an idea that rests at the foundation of representational democracy: that the preeminent responsibility of public officials is to represent the interests of the public. When the interests of the state conflict with those of the people, real democrats stand up for the people.