What strikes me when I visit the tourist landmarks in London is the sight of heavily armed police officers. At Horse Guards parade you have two members of the Blues and Royals on horseback standing guard flanked by four heavily armed police officers.
It is the same story for the Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace. The army being escorted by the police.
During the hugely successful London Olympics, and as a result of problems with the private security company, then London Mayor Boris Johnson drafted in the army to protect key sites. It was a big success and the army won plenty of praise from both athletes and spectators.
So following the latest incident on London Bridge, is there not a role for the army, helping the police and protecting the public? The Metropolitan police is hugely stretched and has limited resources, meanwhile the British army has ample of reserves of people who could be employed guarding London landmarks. Now, I am not advocating heavily armed troops on the streets of London but more a “fist in a velvet glove.” It would also bring the people of London closer to the British army.
At this moment of time, the army doesn´t have a clearly defined role although they are being called upon increasingly to help with the damage and debris from natural disasters such as flooding. Boris Johnson likes to be a known as a politician who is in favour of bold and unconventional ideas. The time has come for action.
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