When The Guardian breaks from its usual sedate and hipster fare to inform us the government is considering calling in the Ministry of Defence to transport food and that the bosses of big business are predicting “civil unrest,” I think we should wake up. Suddenly the world of the ordinary and everyday is behaving like the worlds of familiar disaster fantasy, and – what’s more – we know where it all ends. We’ve read this book and watched this film a thousand times before. We know the rules.
The truth will out. May knows this and so does her party’s pals in the media. That is precisely why they are slowing this down as much as they can. They are hoping the public’s attention wanders off.
Crowd control takes planning, and controlling crowds of the size of those who visit Mecca each year requires excellent planning. Stampedes happen, and this is not the fault of the people caught in the panic – no matter their ethnicity.