Not just a PR war

I can’t agree with Will Davies’s take on the PR effort around today’s attacks. He’s right that the Government has become much more aware of the PR aspect of terrorism, and that there has been a lot of expectation management over the last few years.

However, he closes with:

Government is effectively reneging on its responsibility to keep us actually safe, and [has] retreated to a responsibility to respond efficiently when the enemy does strike?

which is surely wrong.

The Government has been playing a good PR game, but that’s not to say it hasn’t been working behind the scenes to prevent attacks. There has been some public action: the anti-terror laws and arrests around the country, for all they were controversial.

Anti-terror activities are never going to be telegraphed across the front of the papers. I don’t hold a particular brief for the Government, but its getting a clue on managing reactions doesn’t mean it’s losing its grip elsewhere.