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We should have more sympathy for our security services—even when terrorists succeed

Blaming them unfairly will make us all less safe

By Karin von Hippel  

In the twentieth-century, our policing challenges are greater than they were, say, when it came to the IRA in the 1990s. Photo: PA

Few would argue that the police and intelligence agencies should be above criticism. When (not if) bombs go off or people are killed in atrocious ways, it is right that questions are asked about systems and specifics: what was known? What was done?

As we all know, in 2001 the United States suffered the worst terrorist attacks in history. The Commission set up to investigate…

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