Mumbai Attacks: Bombay First Conference @ The Trident - Tape 1
Duration: 01:02:29; Aspect Ratio: 1.778:1; Hue: 6.690; Saturation: 0.123; Lightness: 0.285; Volume: 0.122; Cuts per Minute: 4.320; Words per Minute: 76.354
Summary: Two months after the terrible attacks on our city, a gathering of businessmen, security experts, and politicos meet at the same hotel where gunmen had created havoc.
In the quickly renovated chambers of the Regal Room in The Trident, a 6 hour session takes place where much is discussed - terrorism, surveillance, National ID Cards, higher spending on security and tighter centralization of information gathering networks. The Panel of Experts included the deputy mayor of London, a member of the US 9/11 Commission, a US Dept. of Homeland Security advisor, the head of Security for Deutsche Bank Asia Pacific, a former member of NATO Security, and several counter-terrorism experts. From India, it brought together politicians, a former NSG commando, faces from corporate India, and from the media - Gerson DaCunha and Burkha Dutt. The audience included prominent Indian businessmen, heads of security companies, a member of the Shin Bet, and people from 'concerned civil society'.
Such meetings are usually held in five-star hotels behind close doors with members of the public not having a chance to interact with or interrogate arguments made. We see putting this footage in pad.ma as a way to open up arguments and trajectories, moving away from a totalizing discourse around 'terrorism'... annotations are welcome because slowing down the pace and examining this phenomenon in detail and critically might be our only answer to the media juggernaut.
Trident Hotel, Nariman Point
Rajesh Dalal: For the benefit of a few members who might not know the 3 dignitaries..
Narendar Nayar: Good morning ladies and gentlemen, hon. home minister ....
Narendar Nayar: This was no ordinary terrorist attack with suicide bombers. Indeed, the whole city was under siege for 3 days - this very hotel was under attack and other wing saw lots of destruction. We salute the hotel staff and law enforcement agencies for their dedication. Our hearts go to the suffering families of those who lost their loved ones. The death of about 200 people and injuries to about 300 has not only hurt families, but the entire nation. Entire country is frustrated and angry and wants to see constructive action. This is what we a Bombay first aim to do . Bombay first has been associated with Vision Mumbai to make Mumbai better and safer for our citizens. However the terrorist attacks have cast into doubt the competence of security officials and shaken the business and consumer confidence.
Narendar Nayar: As a nation we have realsied our grave mistakes. We have paid a great price for this and it is time we in civil society take a more pro-active role in shaping the way we want our country to be run.
Narendar Nayar: In my view we have a crisis situation and I'm reminded of what Obama said - "in times of crisis, we cannot hesitate or delay". We at Bombay First, we think about what role civil society can play and how the tremendous emotions and energy generated can be effectively channeled.
Narendar Nayar: We got in touch with our friends in London First to find out their role in London on 7th July, 2005 and how their experts dealt with the aftermath there. We are grateful to their response. I wrote to Barnes... on 9th of December and by 17th, we had a list of experts who could come out at short notice and share their experience and expertise with us. I would like to thank Richard for all the hard work and support.(applause)
Narendar Nayar: We were also running into Christmas holidays and I was talking to Richard while he was holidaying in Ireland on Boxing Day ... and Gerard who later on took over..thank you.
Narendar Nayar: The experts we have today have all been involved in action following 9/11 and 7/7. Our objective is not to do a post-mortem on what went wrong, but to make constructive suggestions on what can be done for future. Today they will share with us and tomorrow they will meet Director General of Police and other security agencies in Mumbai. A note on role of the media. The media has played an extremely important role in the past 7 weeks and we hope they will continue to do so. It is public sentiment / pressure that will make things work. We aim to establish an active working relationship between London, New York and Mumbai where civil society, media, govt. work together to make mumbai a safe place. It is important each one of us use our voice to make Mumbai the city we want it to be.
Narendar Nayar: Once again would like to thank panelists participating today and so generously dontaing their time. Several organizations have helped us and all are on the back (of brochure) ... would like to appreciate support we got from BPT, ICC.. I would especially like to express gratitutde to Mr. Oberoi and The Trident hotel for hospitality and supporting us and offering free rooms for our guests.
Narendar Nayar: My deep appreciation and gratitude to Brit. Deputy High Commisioner for assitance with travel arrangements from London to here and back. Thank you for your support.
Narendar Nayar: Before I conclude, would like to thank Roger Pereira and his team, who have worked day and night with various arrangements, and everything u see here is their effort. Roger, thank you very much ..
Narendar Nayar: And of course, would like to thank the media who spent all day yesterday with our panelists - some items are covered in the paper today, some later - they spent the whole day yesterday with our panelists from UK and USA.
Narendar Nayar: Thank you all for coming - wish you a productive day and a peaceful year ahead - let us hope that out of times of darkness, there will be new hope..thank you very much.
Would now like to invite Mr. Bharat Doshi from ICC to give introductory remarks..
Bharat Doshi: Chairman of Bombay First, Hon. Home Minister, Deputy Mayor of London, Deputy. UK High Commissioner, US High Consulate, colleagues and friends - at the outset, i must compliment Mumbai First and London First who have collaborated to make this event possible. We feel privileged to be supporting this event.
Bharat Doshi: I thought its relevant that international collaboration on issues of safety and security is being talked about. What happened on 26/11 is not only concern of Mumbai because what happened could have happened anywhere in the World - and ofcourse according to security measures, anticipation, etc. intensity could be different - we saw what could happen when a city is held under seige for 3 days...
Bharat Doshi: How do we spread the education regarding dealing with crisis.. how do police deal with it,how a politician deals with it, how a citizen deals with it -what does he do when such a crisis comes, and is there something we can spread .. today should also focus on what we should disseminate. As ICC, with our commercial membership, etc. we would try and disseminate that - this is what different agencies need to know, and what common citizen needs to know - with regard to society. And then sharing of experience - lessons on 9/11, 7/7, and all the lessons of 26/11 - it is important we share our experiences, because at the end we will come with a common template - this can happen - how going forward, the world community will share intelligence and I'm sure this is already happening but if one knows the civilized world is united in fighting terror - that would be my agenda -
Bharat Doshi: While on this subject, something I read 4-5 years ago - there wont be a 3rd world war - the future wars are not going to be on land, air or sea. Future wars will be about paralyzing infrastructure, cyber-wars - we wont know the nationality of the poeple involved and if they paralyze power or water supply, that are all controlled by comps. - if something like that happens - I would not like to burden the experts, but it could be an agenda for the futrue ...- would like to wish this conference success.Thank you.
Vicki Treadell, British Deputy High Commissioner: My fellow colleagues on the dias, ladies and gentlemen - it gives me great pleasure to be here and share UK perspectives and thoughts. First, apologies for being a bit late this morning - was dashing back and forth from the airport as our foreign minister visited Mumbai yesterday as one of the things we as a country wanted to do to express our support, condolences, etc. after 26/11. Will touch about some things he said yesterday
Vicki Treadell: We have a set of dates that remind us of things - 9/11. 7/11, now 26/11, for many of us close to these events or watched unfold on our screens, we remember what we were doing, what we stopped to watch it unfold on our screens - the shock, horror - the strongest emotion that emerged in this city was anger. 9/11 was not the first major terror incident, but it did mark a new dynamic. We will all talk of the NY experience. What we have to remember that terror in all its forms - with different inspirations, doctrines and political groups - has been around for a very long time. In many ways, we have become desensitized and it takes the high profile to shock us.
Vicki Treadell: Lets not forget few months ago there was Bangalore, Ahmedabad, Delhi - but those were in public places, markets - affected ordinary citizens. If we take 9/11 as what heralded this dynamic - what 26/11 did was show the fundamental shift in India - those types of global crimes were now part of Indian geography - the targets chosen were not marketplaces of the ordinary people - the purpose was to shock and awe. Most Mumbaikars felt it very personally as an attack on them, on iconic buildings, including CST, where 4 million ordinary Mumbaikars commute everyday - as an attack on this city because of what it stands for - a dynamic city, also resilient due to previous terror attacks - a city that has learnt not to react with communal riots, but learns to get up and get on with it and will not allow these evil people to do evil on us, to stop us from living the lives that we want to live, from sharing the values that we want to share,from performing the behaviours...
Vicki Treadell: Why else would 400,000 people from the rural community migrate here every year - because it is the city which gives them hope - so from the corporate elite who have helped to drive the economic development of India, to people who come with dreams and aspirations .. that is what those terror attacks were designed to hurt - the very heart of that spirit, the very heart of that dynamic. As Narendar rightly says, we can learn - countries like UK, US , Germany, Spain - we have had our different forms of terrorism- a lot of learning in the UK was from when IRA performed regular terrorist attacks on our mainland. Again, targeting was specific, along the lines of what we saw here on 26/11. The attack on Canary Wharf, London was very much at heart of new financial centre, designed to cripple.
Vicki Treadell: I had privilege in my last job to be the UK Trade Director in North-West England. There, 2 other cities, Warrington and Manchester were targets and victims of IRA terror attacks. I'd like to dwell on Manchester - what happened there after last attack which destroyed much of city centre - was a coming together of local government, national government and the people of Manchester to seize opportunity for renewal and transformation - the Manchester you see today, a vibrant economic hub,the lead city in the north-west of England, was a transformed city - a city of confidence, a city that believed in itself. A huge investment of infrastructure - the rebuilding of city centre into one of the best shopping and leisure destinations in the UK -wonderful restaurants and clubs, investment in museums, cultural scene - that was their response to that terrorist attack.
Vicki Treadell: Taking from that point,the agenda of moving forward,of being seriously committed to investing in what a city needed, not dwelling on the past, being defiant and saying we will rise again, we will be bigger and we will be better. Coming onto Mumbai, this may be the window of opportunity for Mumbai - I know all that hard work people have been working on for years - to truly establish the city as another financial services hub in the World. To not only tackle the consequences of terrorism, but take it as an opportunity towards the economic recovery of other global crises that we are facing, that we all have to find new roots and keys for.
Vicki Treadell: But as our foreign minister, David Miliband, said yesterday,the forces of violent extremism are diverse and diffuse. This is not just an issue of response to attack,it is about prevention as much as that. We must look at causes, work of NGOs at grass-roots levels in communities. Why do people become radicalized? What is the work we need to do on the social agenda, education, learning - the creation of jobs so aspirations can be fulfilled- so young men don't feel they have no option and the attraction that someone will give them a home and thus meaning in life, that will equip them to do a job - just like the 10 young men who came to the city. That was their alternative option as there was not an economic option for them, coming from poor, rural communities.
Vicki Treadell: The response has to be a far more broad-based, multi-layered strategy. Our learning in the UK from the terrorism we suffered at time of IRA attacks and moving on to a different form of terrorism we have seen after 9/11 and home-grown terrorism with roots and inspiration in Pakistan, is a whole range of things - at government level, from national through to local as well as the civil agenda. We must learn from reality of history in order to affect the reality of our today if we are to improve the reality of tomorrow.
Vicki Treadell: Issues I can address - civil contingency planning - how do our agencies, emergency services, our police forces co-ordinate? We can all write up plans - we have business continuity plans, emergency and crisis management plans as I'm sure you do in your corporations. Designing them is one thing, but they have to be living documents. Often after these events, we all review our security arangements, perhaps invest in new infrastructure, CCTV, hire more security guards, we use other forms of technology, we talk to our people - from a government's perspective - in terms of their citizenry, or in terms of our employees, in order to raise awareness. Then the moment passes, we overcome our initial grief, and our plans gather dust. Well, we learnt - you can't ever allow those plans to gather dust - you have to practise them,table-talk exercises where you rehearse scenarios, discuss whether roles and responsibilites are still relevant, and you learn from experience as well.
Vicki Treadell: If i take our own response to this last attack, much of what we did were the lessons learnt from 7/7/2006 .So emergency and contingency planning are absolutely essential. But most importantly,the identification of the direction and leadership of that. Talking about state and national context, that means clarity within government. Lines of communication and authority with all agencies involved in the response must be understood. Chain of command is essential. Coming back to physical infrastruure, London has more CCTV cameras per head than anywhere and technology to process this, track, etc. There is a price to be paid - we learnt that to protect from terrorism, the ordinary citizen has to accept an element of intrusion and observation, but we would rather have that than to have more incidents.
Vicki Treadell: Skilling people, the awareness and education and training. There is no point recruiting more people into police force and other agencies. If they do not have the right equipment or skills, if they don't understand their role and how they co-ordinate - the training & education agenda of those working in those types of organizations
is essential. Public awareness and role of the ordinary citizen is vital aspect of the equation. What do we individually take as our role, our responsibility? This is where the role of NGOs working in communities and religious groups is fundamental. And relationship of government with these bodies is critical in that process. Fundamentally, the knowledge has to be a two-way thing. Pat(?) was quite right - intelligence agencies have to and are increasingly collaborating. No single organization can deal with this - it is a global issue. To coin the phrase, "A war on terror", suggests there is a single entity we are dealing with - it is not. There are many organizations, coming together -on the internet, where they can learn to make bombs, get maps..and plan these activities.
Vicki Treadell: The critical work of our intelligence agencies, the willingness to share and to come together of our agencies in a joint effort to counter and prevent terrorism, to identify those who might be plotting is vital. And i know our foreign minister should have landed now in Islamabad - he will be meeting the Pakistani authorities and discussing the role of intelligence agencies in Pakistan and role of the government in addressing their indigenous problem.
Vicki Treadell: Our allies - America, UK - critically in the future - the role of India in all this - a partner not just on this global agenda issue, but on so many others - a question to India - if you had a permanent seat on UN security council, which we support, if you were part of an expanded G7 G8, what is your position? What is your contribution to the global agenda. What is your collaboration? This is not a question just for the government, but for each state government and citizen. So partnership and collaboration across the peace between our agencies, the knowledge that our police can share. Coming back to our own experience - the best you can gain is to understand the lessons from our bitter experience from events in our country and how that transformed our response at a national and local government level,across agencies, NGOs and what individual citizens did in response. Thank you
Paul Folmsbee, US Consul General: Good morning everyone - that was a fantastic address - a whole bunch of points that Vicky made are points I would talk about. One thing we can consider is how terrorism affects us so deeply and personally but is still global. I was in Dar-e-Salaam, Tanzania when 9/11 happened. One of my duties there was to co-ordinate the embassy's activities regarding the trial happening in NYC for east Africa bombings. We had staff staying in the Marriott, WTC, New York.
Paul Folmsbee: I will never forget staff reaction to events in NYC. People lost control of their emotions.Because they had recently experienced a terrible attack and now the mainland States was under attack. There was no place safe for them. It shows how global terrorism has become. Here in Mumbai, we dont need to be told... these attacks have been going on for a long time - if we go back to the 70s, we can remember extremist ideologies - Munich attacks that killed athletes - if you think about NYC, the 9/11 attack was the 2nd attack on WTC. There was an earlier attack in '93 that nearly succeeded and killed 5 people. 9/11 was not isolated, but many events took place around the world at that time. Scale and severity made people realize in the United States that they need to become proactive against terrorism to safeguard our people.
Paul Folmsbee: India is grappling with a similar response. How will we counter the terrorist threat? How do we balance needs of law enforcement against the personal freedom of citizens so that you ensure safety without sacrificing freedom or right to privacy. On international front, how can we work to prevent spread of terrorism networks. Our initial response were similar to Mumbai. We passed through stages one passes through when a loved one dies - Shock, Grief, Anger at the perpetrators, and then a sense of solidarty and patriotism takes hold against an external threat.
Paul Folmsbee: In 2003, National Commission on Terrorist Attacks convened to seek answers, much like this group has. A post 9/11 world required us to re-shape how we protect our citizens and borders. Based on recommendations, USA made sweeping changes to develop more effective security structures. One of the biggest changes was the consolidation of our security and law enforcement bodies. Customs, border agents, immigration authorities, coast guards, FEMA, and many others were working in an un-coordinated fashion. Spread out.
Paul Folmsbee: These are now merged under a single cabinet level department called Homeland Security. This was hugely useful. In 2004, Congress created office of National Intelligence to co-ordinate working of 16 intelligence and law enforcement agencies, including CIA. Within this office we created the national counter torrorism centre, which acts as the clearing house for alot global issues. The goals of these new organizations have been to break down walls between different government agencies and encourage information sharing and collaboration.
Paul Folmsbee: Equally significant changes required co-operation and sacrifice of US citizens and businesses. Tightening security and increased passenger screening required average citizens to spend more time at airport in the interest of greater safety. Heightened border security required that US citizens needed secure ID when travelling abroad. More stringent documentational requirements helped alert authorities of potential terrorist financing trails.Instituted a homeland security advisory system and increased outreach to all citizens,to make them alert to security risks, more prepared for any emergency - natural or man-made.
Paul Folmsbee: Our increased commitment to securing our country was complemented by an overseas effort to work with other nations to fight terrorism, worldwide. Early on, we realized effort was more than battle of arms. It is an ideological struggle for hearts and minds, to counter the ideology of extremist terrorist organizations. Winning over individuals from margins of society, those most at risk to turning to terror, has made us engage with populations who might be hostile. It meant looking for ways to stabilize nations with a hope of a better future. "Soft power" has been a major US investment around the world. US continues to invest billions of dollars in economic development. Education and other programmes to help those who need it most. To promote moderation and tolerance. I have personally served at many places where goal has been to change the social & economic conditions of the population. One project included building a road to tribal areas in Pakistan. A modest effort to improve the living conditions of population there. I've worked on government programmes in Baghdad and brought aid and relief programmes in Haiti - these efforts are critical to our success. Its all part of the solution.
Paul Folmsbee: Through our efforts to promote economic opportunity in some of the most conflict torn parts of the developing world, we are laying a foundation for a future where terrorism is not likely to flourish.
We are diplomatically collaborating with many nations and UN, etc. to keep innocents safe and free from terror. It is unfortunate it took tragedy on scale of 9/11 for US to realize that change was necessary. As the Mumbai 26/11 attacks showed us, the efforts of the free world are far from over. We are eager to safeguard our citizens and to share experience and work together with India, to not only ensure terrorists are brought to justice but also for future generations to live free, without the fear of terrorist attack. Our task is large and complex. As members of democratic society, we all stand together. We are all in this together.
Thank you very much .. can I now invite .......
Rajesh Dalal: Ladies and gentlemen, it is our great privilege to have 3 international dignitaries with us - Richard Barnes,... and Emily Walker, advisor to US department of Homeland Security. They have been very actively involved with investigation into Sept. 11th in US and 7/7 in London. You willl hear their views during panel discussions in depth. I would solicit their sharing of learning during their crisp views involved with appropriate investigations. More importantly, how do we deal with this real terror threat in this part of the World .. ? How do we ensure and proactively work in a manner that such threat can be dealt with without bearing the pain of terror incidents that took place last year.
Richard Barnes: Thank you very much - namaste, good morning. I have brought with me a letter from Boris Johnson, Mayor of London to the Chief Minister - I will read it ..
Like all of you, I was shocked and saddened by the dreadful and indiscriminate attacks in Mumbai in November - such violence and terror cannot be tolerated anywhere at any time. My sympathies and condolences are with everyone who was affected. However I know the neither Mumbai nor India as a whole will be deflected from its course with terror. I reiterate my offer at the time of the attacks of my full support to recovery operations. As tragic as they are in their region, will enable learnings to be shared and cross-border support to be generated. London benefits from the extensive contributions made to city life by large and vibrant Indian population and long-standing historic ties with India. I am confidant that our relationship will become stronger over the years, to the great advantage of both our destinations.
It is testimony to Mumbai that the city is already bouncing back. They are an inspiration to us all. I wish you well with your event and hope it is a great success.
Yours sincerely, Boris Johnson.
Richard Barnes: ...
That letter sounds very formal, and indeed it is- it is from a leading politcian in London to a leading politician in India. What it doesn't say is that uniquely, in the United Kingdom,both the mayor and deputy mayor have family living here in Mumbai. Johnson's wife's mother is sikh and i have family that are married to parsis and live just down the road here as well. Our interest in your success is not just professional and economical, it is also personal and deeply ingrained. I find this a fascinating city and I find different aspects of it which truly enrich my life. I also find things like traffic, which make me wish I hadn't come, like the traffic, which in an inresolute problem just like in London.
Richard Barnes: It is a challenge, but it is a lovely city, a vibrant city, a trading city, just as london was and is. The similarities are incredible. we have a very deep personal commitment to do what we can to help Mumbai recover. I was at the Taj and thrilled to see it being restored. Here at the oberoi too, it is being restored.
Richard Barnes: On 7/7 at 8:55, 8:58 and then nearly half an hour later at 9:47, London's perception of terror changed forever - thats when the bombs went off. At two of them, you could see the tube-lines - at Russel square, the tube was deep in the ground and it took 15 minutes to walk from station platform to get to the tube - it was a long way, dark and there was no communication. The object of those bombings was not to change the world or any political objective - it was the indiscriminate murder of as many Londoners as possible.
Richard Barnes: We have gone through 30 years of terror with IRA in London - but if terrorists can be honourable, the IRA tended to be honourable. There were often warnings, bombs would be placed in commercial districts late on Sunday. Though there were exceptions, we were not used to ordinary people, from around the world, being slaughtered on our streets - was a shock that made us wake up. 26/11 had the same impact in Mumbai - you have had attacks here before - have had disasters, but the sense of change since coming this time - citizens and media are saying "Enough, no more, we want answers,we want action, preparation and protection."
Richard Barnes: Today's topic is lesson's learnt. The first lesson I learnt when I started to prepare is that the government and agents of the State do not like public inquiries. They would much rather u didn't do it. They would much rather u let the sands of time run through the bottle. And that you put your distance from it. Indeed many have suggested that the inquiry was basically not held. I understand the government is equally helpful here as it was in the UK. The role of the media and people, in ensuring that lessons are learnt and shared, and that preparations are made, is very important and does happen.
Richard Barnes: We looked at the events after explosions - not involved with the failings leading up to 7/7 -- they were for other departments of state to investigate. I would not have got the security and secret services to reveal evidence in public. Although, since then it is known that all 4 bombs were known to secret service - they had files on them, but were not pursued, since they looked like "low-level" activists. CCTV was mentioned - it is not a preventive tool, it is an investigative tool. We have footage of all bombers at Kings Cross, etc. -- it did not stop them, but we have footage to follow them later...