We should be protecting Gary McKinnon, not catapulting him across the Atlantic, argues Boris Johnson.
Since it is now obvious that the British state is about to commit one of the most protoplasmic acts of self-abasement since Suez, and since the clock is now ticking to the moment when Gary McKinnon, 43, will be taken from his home in north London and put – if necessary by force – on a plane to America, it is time to pose the question everyone seems to have ignored.
Leave aside, for the moment, the morality of exporting the Asperger’s sufferer for trial in America. Can I ask, what is the point of having a trial at all? I simply do not understand what proposition is to be so expensively tested in this American courtroom.
Gary McKinnon is accused of hacking into American military computers. He is charged with roaming around the cyberspace of the Pentagon, and leaving such insulting spoor as “your security is cr-p”. He is accused of guessing passwords, and trying to view secret photos of unidentified flying objects in Nasa databanks. All this will be put to him in court by some brace-twanging prosecution counsel, as though it were the crux of the matter.
And yet Mr McKinnon has never denied it. He has always said that he hacked into American military computers, and that is because he earnestly believes that there is a conspiracy between Uncle Sam and Big Oil to cover up the interception of alien craft that are running on some kind of renewable energy. For all I know he may be right.