“I’ll obviously discuss all of this with President Putin and explain to him why we’ve taken the action we’ve taken. But obviously the action he takes about Russian tourists, that will be a matter for him.”
“It’s obviously a matter for the Russians about whether they continue to fly,” the prime minister said. “If you look at what other countries have done, the Americans have changed their travel advice to Sharm el-Sheikh – they did that after seeing particular intelligence and concerns that they had.
Earlier, the foreign secretary, Philip Hammond, said there was a “significant possibility” that a bomb brought down the Russian plane, in the light of the claim of responsibility by IS Sinai.'Flights have been suspended from Sharm el-Sheikh. An emergency meeting of COBRA convened. Cameron emerged from 10 Downing Street, his face contorted in the usual rictus of 'concern' claiming that he had a piece of 'sensitive intelligence' that the rest of the world, other than the US, did not presumably have access.
Britain's ramping up of the terrorist threat in response to the downing of the Russian airliner serves a number of political aims. It insinuates that Russia was responsible for endangering the security of civilian airliners in Egypt and that Britain too, as a consequence, faces the threat of its holidaymakers being threatened.
The other useful part of Cameron and Hammond's 'public diplomacy' is that it diverts attention away from the criticism of the government for welcoming General Sisi to London for clinching lucrative trade deals, despite the murder and imprisonment of political opponents of the regime in Cairo.
The emergency measures being taken to protect British holidaymakers also serves as a way of building up the momentum to push for air strikes against ISIS in Syria and to thereby, in the process, trying to discredit Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn as a 'national security threat' and, of course, 'soft' or sympathetic to terrorists.
So Cameron could use the terror attack to insinuate how his alliances with dictatorships are about the need to keep British civilians safe, launch those aircraft and drone strikes on ISIS and stand tall in the region and on the global stage. Basically, this is the sort of 'public diplomacy' on the 9/11 model he took from Blair.
No other national government other than Ireland has suspended flights from the resort of Sharm el-Sheikh. Britain, of course, has no respresentatives in the official crash investigation and so is trying to make the best of spinning the air crash in ways that would benefit the governments national security state agenda.
Civilian deaths and the threat of ISIS terror plots on the Al Qaida model are too good an opportunity to miss if revving up for military intervention in Syria, one reason Britain, as opposed to all other countries, is seizing on the catastrophe to score political points about how it and not Russia, is dedicated to protecting civilians.
It's a power game.