Saturday, 19 September 2015
For those struggling to download the above, it is a debate between Sonia Poulton and former detective John O'Connor - the question: Why has Madeleine received more police assistance than any other missing child, and should the investigation continue.
Sonia spoke first. She agreed the case of missing Madeleine is extraordinary, explained that she is making a film/documentary about the case, and urged listeners to go read the police files and information online. She has heard of new developments in the investigation that would point at the end being in sight.
John O'Connor began by placing the entire blame on the Portuguese police for wrongly assuming the parents were involved. He then goes on to tell us what martyrs the parents are, and how their endeavours (dodgy detectives) provided mountains of evidence and information that Operation Grange have spent 4 years ploughing through (Oh yeah, lol), hence the long delay.
Kerry Needham, by contrast, did not have the 'resources' the McCanns had, ergo, all the evidence has been lost, and re-opening her case would be akin to chasing shadows. Unlike Operation Grange who are not chasing shadows, but are chasing genuine spotty men, ugly men and smelly men presumably.
Sonia closes the debate by mentioning that a trailer for her forthcoming documentary will be released in October on the anniversary of Brenda Leyland's death - make sure you listen to the very end to hear it :)
Wednesday, 16 September 2015
|Ask the dogs Sandra|
The McCanns desire for the limelight matched their desire for hard cash, and there exists hundreds if not thousands of interviews that display not only their true characters, but their ridiculous self serving and obviously fabricated tall stories. The proud father moment, the whooshing curtains, the 'why didn't you come when S*** and I were crying' question. Every interview of the parents is filled with 'WTF' moments, moments that are blatantly obvious to the viewing public, but seemingly invisible to the UK's law enforcement agencies, so called criminal and psychology experts and fawning television presenters!
Gerry and Kate can't understand why people won't believe them and they think the more they appear on our screens, the more people they will convince. They just need an opportunity to explain, so why don't we shut up and listen? Their elongated, detailed explanations should have settled the matter once and for all and clearly it is those still doubting them who have the problem.
I have no doubt whatsoever, that the McCann case will change the entire way in which we look at psychopathy, particularly in the study of deceptive behaviour. The McCann interviews are a goldmine of resources for those interested in the darker side of human nature. They are packed with examples of 'how to dig yourself a deeper hole', duping delight and 'look how clever we are' moments. Unfortunately those with supersize egos, cannot suppress the urge to show off their genius, and their need for acknowledgment usually leads to their downfall.
I would imagine they are impossible to work with. They have no scruples, no boundaries, and no loyalty to anyone other than themselves. All those politicians, newspaper moguls and editors. ex police chiefs and proactive family and friends should bear in mind, if these parents are willing to sell out their own first born child, then they are willing to sell out anyone.
Monday, 14 September 2015
Imagine launching an industry, or revitalising an old one, with the face of the world's top model stamped on every product? Add several kilos of syrup, a backstory that would bring a tear to the eye of cynical old Simon Cowell and you can start printing million dollar notes.
Imagine then, that you have a government staggering to keep control, a leader with a fragile ego, desperate to make the people like him, and a popular cause that the public have leapt onto? In 2007, Gordon Brown wanted/needed a popular bandwagon to jump onto - a cause that would unite him with 'the people', a cause that crossed all class barriers - the UK were united in wanting to find Madeleine McCann. Her parents had experienced their worst nightmare, everyone wanted to help them, and the Labour Press Office had people like Clarence Mitchell, who could point out how good they would all look wearing yellow ribbons for Maddie.
Tis my own belief that whoever in Downing Street took that first call on the morning of 4th May 2007, got so carried away with media potential and the opportunity to portray themselves, Gordon Brown in particular, as compassionate, caring fathers and mothers, must have seemed like manna from heaven. The idea that the parents could have been involved in their daughter's disappearance either never entered their career focused heads or it took several hours/days for that big Oops moment to kick in.
Were the Labour Government so naïve that they didn't check out the abduction for themselves? I can't say I know very much about MI5 and MI6, but were they too sitting there wiping away the tears and passing around the collection hat? Were the cream of the UK's police and all the special forces taken in and convinced by the phoney performances of Gerry and Kate McCann and the distasteful tales of child neglect from the Tapas 7?
The first two Portuguese policemen who arrived at the scene on 3rd May, spotted the strange behaviour instantly. Kate describes them in her book as Tweedledum and Tweedledee, thereby establishing, not only what a vile, ungrateful woman she is, but also establishing that she and her equally charmless husband, were always going to blame the Portuguese police. And lucky them, the British Establishment were going to join in that too.
I think Gordon Brown was desperate to be a popular Prime Minister, but he just didn't cut the mustard, he lacked the charisma of Bill Clinton, the boyish charm of Tony Blair and even the 'authority' of Margaret Thatcher. In an age where world leaders are chosen as much on their good looks and electibility as their policies, Gordon Brown was a throwback to the ugly mugs of Harold Wilson and Dennis Healy, that is, leaders now are not so much the peoples' choice, as the choice of the Party's PR Department.
As we all know, Gordon Brown worked his passage, he had earned the crown, no one more than he, had sacrificed so much. Despite having the rug whipped from beneath his feet all those years ago, he had reluctantly settled for the role of wing man and bided his time. He not only wanted to succeed Tony Blair, he wanted to surpass him, nothing like a niggling grudge and years of resentment to drive ambition on. Blair had swept to power on wave of public adoration, but he left under a cloud - the public's love was there for the taking.
I don't doubt Mr. Brown's financial genius (what do I know), but unfortunately for him, you've either got, or you haven't got, charm, and sadly for him, not only does he lack it, he doesn't understand it. He comes from the Methodist ethos that hard work and dedication should be reward in itself, or more accurately, it should be recognised and appreciated by others (the masses) without the need for the martyr to blow his own trumpet. The more saintly among us do their good works silently and in sack cloth, in the knowledge that the Good Lord knows what they do, and a press leak here and there doesn't hurt.
It could be argued, quite successfully I think, the incumbent British Government made a huge mistake by intervening in the Portuguese Investigation, but then used that mistake for a multitude of sinister agendas. The case of missing Madeleine had nothing whatsoever to do with the online protection of children - Maddie wasn't even 4 years old. But it coincided with every governments' need to get control of information - a cause strong enough for every parent and everyone who cares about children, to give the authorities permission to access their confidential online activity. Those not agreeing, obviously being child haters and perverts. Those shouting 'think of the children' know they will always have a wave of popular support, it follows 'terrorist threats' in the 'how to gain control and stay popular' section of 'Every Tyrant's Handguide'. Sexual perversion in these anything goes times, brings out the ire in very few these days, but throw kids into the mix and you can still raise a formidable angry mob.
Two cards are teetering at the very top of this particular fluttering house, the blame can't be laid entirely at the door of Mr. Brown, Tony and the gushing Cherie, were veritable angels of mercy to the stricken parents. So, two Prime Ministers, and several Home Secretaries, must convince the public that they had no way of knowing that the McCanns' abduction story may have been a fib?
Monday, 7 September 2015
The cost element is a good ruse to get the public on board in calls for the Madeleine investigation to be shelved. The £11/12million and 4 long years is wholly disproportionate to the original crime. No country or police force has ever committed so much money and manpower to finding one small child. Police filing cabinets the world over have sections filled with unsolvable and cold cases, crimes for which there is not enough evidence to bring a prosecution, even though the detectives have a good idea who the perpetrators are. The good guys don't always win.
The McCanns, like the parents of Jonbenet Ramsey, have money and connections, and like the Ramseys, they have been able to counter accusations against themselves with a slick, organised campaign of misinformation to protect themselves and point the finger of blame elsewhere. Like the McCanns, the Ramseys were even able to employ former 'respected' policemen and detectives to create scenarios and documentaries to support their claims that they were innocent victims and that a stranger murdered their daughter. So powerful and successful were the Ramseys that no charges were ever brought against them.
The Ramseys however, did not have to face the power of the internet or the full force of public opinion. Like the McCanns, they were able to maintain control of what was published in the mainstream media through litigation, but they didn't have to contend with the police releasing their original files into the public domain, and Jonbenet's Avenger, former lead detective Steve Thomas, did not have the worldwide support that Goncalo Amaral has, and his book was not shared by thousands online. For Team McCann, all their planted stories of known predators, egg men, spotty men and ugly men, are deconstructed and disassembled by armchair detectives within moments, Unfortunately for them, the audience they created when Madeleine disappeared has stuck, but they are a more enlightened and sophisticated audience than that of the Ramseys, and they know all the details.
If we step back from the propaganda and the spin that surrounds this case and look at similar cases of claimed child abduction, we can see that the case of missing Madeleine is not so unique. I doubt the McCanns will object to being compared to the parents of Jonbenet Ramsey, but the exact circumstances are probably more comparable to Lisa Irwin and Isabel Celis. These cases, it could be said, are going nowhere. The parents are not co-operating with the police, and the police are not looking for abductors, the present position is stalemate. The parents in these cases are also running 'get their daughters home campaigns' and Funds with huge clouds of suspicion over their heads.
In the case of missing Madeleine however, there are two live police investigations and there are no signs that the police, either here in the UK or in Portugal are looking for a live child, a paedophile gang or a lone abductor. There is not now, and never has been, any urgency in what they are doing - if they believed Madeleine was alive and other children were at risk, then catching the 'abductor' would be their top priority, and they wouldn't take 4+ years to do it. If another child were abducted or murdered in the meantime, then their laissez faire attitude would be unforgivable.
The case of missing Madeleine could have been shelved many years ago if a whitewash was on the cards. No-one seriously expected Scotland Yard to intervene, the crime was committed on Portuguese soil, and no matter how much the public were being whipped up into a frenzy of support for the victim parents, it would have fizzled out with few, if any, questions asked. The McCanns could have been given the review they wanted and they could have carried on with their fundraising and their new lives in the media, representing missing children and hacked off celebrities.
If the remit of Operation Grange was to find an abductor and clear Madeleine's parents, then they have failed. None of the suspects featured on the tabloid's front pages (some who have gone round the block a few times) have been convincing enough to carry the abduction story all the way, The mention of death, the digging up of the area in the immediate vicinity of Apartment 5A, and the uncanny similarity between Gerry and the main suspect, 'Smithman' has turned even the most outspoken supporters of the parents into sceptics. Operation Grange may have begun the investigation with 'neither the parents or their friends are suspects', but it cannot end the same way, too much water has passed under the bridge.
So what is taking so long, and what is costing so much money? Anyone familiar with this case, even on a tertiary basis, will know that the cover up goes much deeper and much further, than child abduction, or occultation of a cadaver. This Scotland Yard investigation, if it is an honest one, will not be a prosecution of, say, 9 people, it will be the prosecution of many, many more, some of whom, might even be seen as untouchable. A case must be built by the police, against every individual involved and they will each have a team of defence and media lawyers to fight their case. They are looking at long stretches in prison, they will not go down without a fight.
They are up against unscrupulous people who hold powerful secrets about powerful men (and women), secrets that have enabled them to keep the establishment on puppet strings and the cash flow running in their direction. Each and every one of these people want to see the Madeleine case disappear and Kate and Gerry riding off into the sunset. If the McCanns are charged, then they too will face a knock on the door, there is no honour among thieves, when the time comes, it will be every man (and woman) for themselves, and perverting the course of justice, no matter who you are, is a very serious criminal charge.
Those of us who have been on the receiving end of these evil machinations have little or no sympathy for those involved, but there will be many who's first instincts will be 'how will this affect me', and sadly, they will put their consciences aside, and opt for self preservation every time. Operation Grange are probably all too well aware of this, they can't put establishment figures on trial unless their case is watertight and if their targets are bonded together by a 'lets stay rich and successful' superglue, they are facing almost insurmountable odds.
I doubt any of them are too concerned about what happens to Kate and Gerry. They have been articulate and publicly acceptable victims of this apparent heinous crime, but no-one could have foreseen what an odious pair of greedy publicity seekers they would become. Those desperate to operate the strings, had little choice but to watch their prodigies grow, flourish, and then go out of control. Once Kate and Gerry got a taste of the power the media had, they wanted it all to themselves. No sharezeez , for them, they wanted it all. How many megalomaniacs does it take to change a lightbulb - there can be only ONE.
Kate and Gerry are nouveau riche, they not only don't understand the rules, they have no intention of playing by them. This is their time, they make the rules. These are people who don't let an opportunity pass them by, and they don't play nicely. It is no coincidence that all those benevolent millionaires and altruistic television presenters are no longer at their side, the 'nice' Kate and Gerry only exists for those who can do something for them, stop giving, and you are history.
The McCanns, I think, will be hoisted by their own petards, all those they have wronged (and I have no doubt there are many) will reach a point where enough is enough. Kate and Gerry may be finishers, but they cannot guarantee the same for those around them. Some may have reached a point where they honestly don't care what their own punishment might be, whatever it is, it will be preferable to having their lives dictated by narcissistic psychopaths. And if they continue with the abduction lie, then that will be their lives forever more.
Something has got to give. Pacts of Silence cannot last forever, Among the many who have committed crimes for this despicable pair, there must be some who are finding the gnawing guilt unbearable, some who will be considering what their own children will think of them and what their legacy will be. Loathe as I am to put Kate and Gerry among the Chamber of Horrors and the most evil people who have ever lived, among them will be, those who helped them.
Sunday, 6 September 2015
If I were Kate and Gerry I would be very worried indeed. This investigation has been going on for 4 years and it is quite clear Operation Grange are not looking for an abductor, nor are they looking for a gang of child traffickers. More significantly, they are not looking for a live child. Every possible abduction scenario has been fully exhausted, every likely suspect (and a few unlikely ones) placed under the microscope, nothing and no-one has been found that can go the distance and carry the abduction story all the way through to a court room.
Yet still, Operation Grange will not give up, despite the fact that someone is using the outrageous cost element to manipulate public opinion. If Operation Grange were to throw in the towel at this stage, no-one would blame them, they tried their best and we can all go home now. Besides, the 'public' are now asking questions about those constant trips to sunnier climes and those luxurious stays in 5* hotels. The oh, so gentle message could be, if you carry on taking the pee, the public will turn on YOU. You, like Goncalo Amaral, will become the bad guys. Especially, if you lay the blame at the door of the grief stricken parents, because you couldn't be arsed to find the abductor.
Oh, what a tangled web we weave ......... On the plus side, Operation Grange have a way out, the overwhelming opinion of the public (this week) is that the investigation should be closed and that the police should be working on current cases and helping real children. In times of austerity, the cost element is a good card to play when you want to bring an end to something. Kudos to the spinmeisters. However, once the waves have settled, the 'cost' card will be used by their enemies against them, eg. 'now explain yourself'. Tis a double edged sword.
Unfortunately, when you spin the life of yourself and all of those around you, you will eventually reach a point where you will go up your own anus, alimentary canal, and come out through your gobshite mouth. Tis a comical sight to behold, as these rudimentary wordsmiths juggle words to ridiculous proportions in order to absolve themselves and their paying clients of any wrong doing whatsoever whilst simultaneously creating a sensational headline for a news hungry tabloid. Tis no wonder those skilled in the dark art of spin dream of becoming Masters of the Universe.
Every company of worth, even (especially) the public service and the charitable ones, must use cunning to survive. And for cunning read 'spin' - truth and reality no longer cuts the mustard, it has to be enhanced and sexed up. Tis not so much the age of 'survival of the fittest or even strongest' so much as 'survival of the most conniving'. Purveyors of snake oil and tall stories have found their niche. The company men and women who are willing to sell their souls for scraps from the top table will prosper as they always have, while those who strike and/or disobey company rules, will be sacked and replaced by machines with a message from HR saying Ps. We were going to do that anyway, but now we can make it your fault and turn the public against YOU! Ha ha. Pps. We will ALWAYS go for the cheapest option.
A well spun lie is considerably cheaper for a corporation than, say, making recompense for previous misdeeds with something constructive for the community, ie. new school, hospital, etc. or heaven forbid, compensating workers/consumers maimed or killed in said companies quest to make a profit. With the manufacture and enhancement of news stories, companies must now compete, not in the boardrooms or on the shop floors, but across the pages of facebook and twitter, with skilled media monitors who can manipulate and steer public opinion.
The case of missing Madeleine McCann attracted the cream of the crop. Those who immediately discarded the tragedy of the child's fate, and went straight for the 'how can we make a shedload of dosch out of this?'. And they were successful above and beyond their wildest dreams. Madeleine was beyond help (a good persuader for those with a smidgeon of conscience left), but the bigger causes, Abduction and Missing Children, could tug at the nation's heart and purse strings for decades, with the added bonus of fear, 'if a well cared for child like Madeleine could be abducted from her bed', NO child is safe, so stop moaning and hand over your internet details and make a cash donation to our designated child finding charity'.
Whilst we may dislike the characters who created this tall story, we have to admire their genius and, it has to be said, their tenacity. To be fair, they didn't have a lot to work with, the McCanns and their friends had already given their statements to the police, so the 'jemmied shutters, whooshing curtains' and a faceless egg man walking away with a prostrate child was carved in stone. We can almost picture a bemused pink man, rubbing his chin and saying 'so you left 3 toddlers on their own to go out for a meal? hmm', now how can I turn that around and it make the fault of the local people/police and would you like a dash of snake oil on the side?'.
The case of missing Madeleine McCann became a phenomenon because it coincided with the infancy of social media. Those who drove the campaign understood the power of the internet and were itching to find a way in which to make themselves very rich, and very powerful. They had been dreaming about it for years, and probably had a catalogue of imaginary, and sadly, very real, filing cabinets stuffed with Plans A through to Z, and as a last resort, a hit the destruct button. They pay the same fastidious attention to detail, as a well groomed SS Officer. But don't knock them for it, it got them where they are.
They played a good game, but they underestimated the opposition, and they overestimated themselves. Kate McCann was actually right, people ARE inherently good, democracy wins over tyranny every time. And if we don't protect and speak up for the most vulnerable in our society, in this case, a little girl, who will be next? Unfortunately, for the McCanns and those who have fought so hard to keep the facts behind Madeleine's disappearance hidden, no amount of spin, libel trials, hacking crusades and lobbying for changes in the law, has been able to keep the lid on this bubbling volcano. The truth simply won't go away.
This case has also illustrated how easily ANY story can be researched and disassembled within moments. People who previously only skimmed the headlines, have through this case. awoken to the fact that our media do not tell the truth and they are now asking 'why are the newspapers lying to us' and 'what else have they lied about'. This case begins with a missing child, but it exposes a corruption within our society, that was unimaginable to most of us. It is has given us a direct peep behind those Thick of It' doors and the chilling likeness between the fiction and the reality has scared the bejesus out of us.
The case of missing Madeleine McCann was besieged by spin doctors who had already perfected their craft to a fine art. This (not so new) breed of social media warriors have new tools and new weapons of mass destruction/creation - an abundance of, and access to, hundreds if not, thousands of outlets (customers). Technology has created a means with which to isolate and target an audience for any product or opinion they need/desire. Each and everyone one of us, leaves a 'finger' print and DNA trail of our individual/personal lives - the powers that be now have the technology to track down and incriminate anyone of us they choose. The nightmare of George Orwell's 1984 is here and now, we are living it.
Social media, or indeed, access to social media by millions, has created new, formerly inaccessible markets. The masters, of sales, marketing, spin, etc, can now isolate and target the exact demographic they want to reach. They no longer have to waste money advertising en masse to people who will never buy their products, they can focus on their most likely buyers and work on ways to convert the rest. The potential of the internet could almost form the premise of an early Bond film. 'Imagine, Dr. Evil, if you had a machine powerful enough to enter the homes of and spy on every living being on the planet?' followed by an witchy cackle and the stroking of a white cat.
Unfortunately for the powers that be, this new age of information works both ways. Just as they can watch us, we can watch them Even the antiquated UK Libel Laws can no longer place books or thoughts under lock and key. Censorship, the favoured tool of those who wish to stay in power, no longer exists. The McCanns efforts to bury Goncalo Amaral's book 'The Truth of the Lie' created more sales, more sceptics and more support for the former detective.
If there were annual Dark Arts Oscar ceremonies for making a lie become the truth, I am sure many of those attached to the Maddie case have already left their mark. For would be writers out there: Conflict = Drama = Audience. And of course, there is no such thing as bad publicity, dahlinks. Sadly for Team McCann however, Madeleine went missing during the infancy of social media, now it has grown into a rebellious teenager, and they can't handle it anymore, no-one can.
Those there at its infancy of social media, could see its power and its potential, but like most wannabe rulers/ dictators/tyrants they failed to look at the bigger picture, or more graphically, peep over the square edge of their world to see what was beyond. They have now all kind of disappeared up their own arses, and are stuck at a knot in the large colon. Some are still attempting a scatter gun approach. Chucking ideas out there to gauge public opinion.
If Operation Grange packed up and went home without a result would there be :
a) rioting in the streets
b) a general consensus that Scotland Yard tried their best and should get awards and titles
c) demands for an explanation as to where the £11million went
d) demands for a more believable explanation for a child disappearing than a bungled burglary
e) who cares
The separation of the Fund in my humble opinion, screams preparation - 'Defend the Tapas Two/Nine' springs to mind, or on a broader scale (bigger audience) 'Defend Responsible Parents' against the evils of non Catholics and people who are jealous of them. It will probably be a mixture of the two but no doubt some wag somewhere, will slip the word Tapas in.
Operation Grange (wisely imo) are giving very little away. They may, or may not use this latest piece of spin to their own advantage (they may even have planted it), it answers the question 'what would the public think if we shelved the case?' - and at this moment, there are no strong feelings, no-one is desperate to keep the investigation going, like, say, the parents for example, and no-one is lobbying on their behalf (why not?). They campaigned so hard to get the Scotland Yard investigation, why are they giving it up with barely a whimper? They are already talking about a new and separate Fund to search for Maddie, which begs the question, what was the first Fund for? And how do they know OG haven't found someone, or if they are presently following a potential lead?
Both Kate and Gerry have been doing their utmost to persuade the public that they personally were not involved in their daughter's disappearance. It is the fear of discovery that is their real agony. It is the cause of the rapid aging and the eye bags. From the moment news of Madeleine's disappearance broke, Gerry and Kate's main concern was their image. At a time when most of us were too shocked to even think about the parents being involved, the family, Team McCann were planting propaganda stories in the press. Who was accusing Gerry and Kate of being negligible parents (sic)' on 5th May Philomena?
Just as the McCanns wanted the Portuguese investigation to be shelved, they want the same thing for the Scotland Yard one. But this time with a much clearer statement of absolution and a plug for their new Fund. I jest, I hope, but I think the cosy relationship between the McCanns and the Yard is long since a thing of the past. Both parties have no option but to present an image of mutual co-operation, but I doubt it bears any resemblance to reality. The McCanns may give the occasional nod of gratitude to Operation Grange, but they are probably seething inside, just as they were when the PJ were getting too close for comfort.
Even if the officers of Operation Grange, were the most affable men and women on the planet, living under their close scrutiny day in and day out, would drive the average person insane. They would do anything to bring the nightmare to an end. The main protagonists herein, have nerves of steel and dry ice running through their veins. Nothing cracks their outer veneer, where we expect emotion, such as the mention of their daughter's name, there is none. Where we expect grief for their daughter's loss - her childhood, her siblings, the milestones she should have reached, there is none. Their grief centres on the way Madeleine's unfortunate loss affects them. 'I couldn't even say Happy Birthday to My daughter'. 'We are not as happy we could be'. These are not anguished cries for Madeleine, or on her behalf, they are anguished cries for themselves.
Kate and Gerry took on the mantle of victims from the moment the news broke. I suspect it is a ruse they have used successfully all their lives. The characters they are now, are the same characters they were before Madeleine disappeared, their need to portray an image of themselves as the perfect couple, then perfect family, was just as intense. Kate flew into a rage when the PJ suggested they might be involved, her biggest fear being, what her mother would think. Kate, I would imagine has spent a lifetime telling her mother what she wanted to hear, while Gerry's doting siblings probably did the same for their mother.
Kate and Gerry have had years and much experience of pretending they are not suspects, nobody does it better. Kate told us herself, while they were falling to pieces 'backstage' with Gerry writhing around on the floor, they were appearing before the world's cameras, telling their fans how much confidence they had in the PJ. Anyone relying on the 'how could they act so naturally at their last supper', need only look at the interviews they gave in the days following.
Sadly, once again the British mainstream media are failing to give their audience the true facts behind the disappearance of Madeleine McCann, or worse, they are deliberately misleading them for sinister political purposes. I'm not for one moment, suggesting the public should be given details of the police investigation, that would be absurd. It would be inhumane to put the families involved in the spotlight - their lives would become even more intolerable than they probably are now. Justice must be allowed to run its course, but if it fails, there are a lot of eyes watching and no doubt a lot of whistles waiting to be blown.
Meanwhile, what should most definitely NOT be happening is the promotion of donations to a new Fund for Maddie by the mainstream media. Have any of them actually looked at the accounts for the original Madeleine Fund? They begin with the lame joke of the misspelling of Amaral to AmOral, then continue along the same 'oh what hoot' theme throughout. All the failures of the Portuguese Police were saved and used against them when the case was shelved. If Operation Grange 'fails' in the same way as the PJ 'failed', shouldn't the laying of misery and fear curses on former detectives and the follow through be discouraged by responsible news editors? The McCanns must have someone to blame, it is the secret of their success, have they already selected an OG Officer to destroy, or will the next Curse apply to the whole team?
Do I personally think the case should be wrapped up? No. Because the original crime spawned an outbreak of additional crime that runs right through the heart of the British establishment. The incumbent British government intervened in this case and the Portuguese investigation came to a standstill, with no charges brought against anyone. The British have done the Portuguese a huge disservice, they have struck at the heart of the Portuguese Tourist Industry. They have smeared the reputation of the Portuguese police and declared the Algarve a haven for sexually deviant men, Men who prowl the streets of holiday resorts, on the off chance that a white British family will leave the kids' bedroom window open and the door unlocked.
If Operation Grange shelve the case of missing Madeleine now, they will have achieved less in 4 years, than their Portuguese counterparts achieved in 4 months. They haven't found so much as a whiff of an abductor, because there isn't one, and blaming the Portuguese is no longer an option. Even with a blank cheque and every resource available, Scotland Yard, like the PJ have not arrested anyone and as far as the general public and dim witted television presenters are concerned, the disappearance of Madeleine is just as much a mystery as it was 8 years ago, but with suspicion of the parents multiplied tenfold.
Not only have Scotland Yard failed to find an abductor (because there isn't one), they have failed to clear the parents. If they give up now, it will be because they are no longer looking for an abductor and they do not have enough evidence to bring charges against the actual perpetrators. Sadly, this scenario is far more common than most of us realised, it happens the world over, especially in the cases of claimed child abductions - see Lisa Irwin, Isabel Celis and the murder of Jonbenet Ramsey. No Evidence is a powerful chant, some might even see it as a taunt to the police, but it is the most powerful defence of all, and it is one that prosecutors will throw back at investigators time and time again.
Those of us who have researched and followed this case from the beginning would rightly question the 'no evidence' defence, from our perspective the evidence is overwhelming, but will it stand up in a Court of Law? Does the Portuguese AG have enough evidence to prosecute those crimes committed on Portuguese soil? How is that Pact of Silence holding up? What have Scotland Yard discovered in those thousands of box files? Or, more accurately, what were they looking for?
While the question of whether the Portuguese of the British will go ahead with any prosecutions hangs in the balance, there are no happy endings for anyone. Until there is a trial, no-one can be convicted or cleared. If this is a whitewash, then it is the worst whitewash ever, because it has established, beyond reasonable doubt, that there was no abductor.