Febuary 5, 2022 INDEX

Spooks home in on Alexei
(and thousands of others)

In the latest Alexei Sayle Podcast solicitor Paul Heron reveals that Alexei has been spied on by Special Branch officers, something which you or I will probably not be too surprised about, but which Alexei seems to find strangely troubling.

Heron, who is part of the gigantic Spycops inquiry currently taking place, says more than 1,000 organisations have been spied on, often infiltrated, activists befriended and sometimes officers have even instigated long term sexual relationships with group members.

One of the victims was Helen Steel, who tells Alexei that an affair with a Spycop, is the most intense relationship possible because officers are trained to agree with everything the person they are preying on says and to pretend they share all their interests.

Alexei and Paul Heron agree that far from society being liberal and tolerant and policing, the thin blue line protecting us from criminals, as most believe, we live in a highly repressive state where even police officers who enter their career with the best of intentions are institutionally pressurised to beome the bastions of right wing ideology.

When I tell people that MI5 spies on me their first reaction is almost invariably: why would they bother with someone like you? I have to admit that I am not important and that in a decent, tolerant society I would be left alone to my eccentricities. MI5's job is to deal with spies and terrorists. Anyone can see that I do not fall into either category.

But in reality I am exactly the sort of person who falls a victim. Take for example, the case of Molly Cooper, a former NUJ NEC member and Freelance Branch secretary, who was one of the victims (see page 154 of Blacklisted, The Secret War Between Big Business and Union Activists). I was secretary of the NUJ's much bigger Surrey Magazine Branch and Treasurer of the NUJ's Magazine and Book Industrial Council.

The vast number of people targetted by Special Branch and the so called "intelligence services" reveals that society is neither decent nor tolerant. Thanks to modern surveillance technology, which operates through the devices that make our everyday life work, like phones and credit cards, the intelligence services can see through every key hole and eavesdrop on every conversation. Right now they are doing things that the East German Stasi, would not have contemplated in the worst nightmare.

One of the things MI5 does to me is remove files from my web site. For example, I wrote about a fascist dictator in the Middle East. Mysteriously my post disappears even though it is my web site and no-one else has access. Other files removed relate to my old friend Peter Perry. Peter was a volunteer who spent five years working with the RAF in North Africa during the Second World War. But he was also a proud communist and there is a deep grain of anti-communism in MI5.

People say to me, why don't you just ignore them. Let them have their fun. What they can't seem to get their heads around is that MI5 operates a harassment campaign against the people it singles out. It's object is to prevent them from doing whatever it is that MI5 finds objectionable. If the victims have to keep chasing their tail fixing computers and re-establishing internet connections, then they can't do anything else. It's impossible to ignore MI5.

Jonathan Brind
Febuary 5, 2022