British police and Salman Abedi
Salman Abedi, the alleged perpetrator of the deadly bombing at Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, was on the radar of British secret services, according to interior minister Amber Rudd. "We do know that he was known up to a point to the intelligence services," she told Sky News.

This admission follows a pattern. Abdelhamid Abaaoud, the supposed mastermind of the Paris attacks in 2015, was on the radar of intelligence services in France and Belgium, and Khalid Masood, the terrorist blamed for the Westminster attack earlier this year, was also on record with security services in Britain. In fact, there are numerous cases going back decades where this was the case.

Dame Eliza Manningham-Buller, the former Director General of MI5, said in 2006, "MI5 and the police were tackling 200 groups or networks totaling more than 1,600 identified individuals in the UK who were 'actively engaged in plotting or facilitating terrorist acts.'"

More recently, the current head of MI5, Andrew Parker, said his agency and British police are monitoring more than 3,000 suspected jihadis.

British intelligence, however, is far more familiar with suspected terrorists than either Manningham-Buller or Parker are willing to admit.

Imam Abu Qatada—the "alleged spiritual leader of the al-Qaida terrorist network," "Osama bin Laden's right-hand man in Europe," and "believed by several European countries to be a pivotal figure in international terrorism"—was installed in a safe house by British intelligence. In 1996 and 1997, Qatada met with a British MI5 agent and agreed to become an informant for British intelligence.

Qatada was such a valuable asset the British turned down a request to extradite him to Jordan where he was suspected of participating in a series of car bombings. He was subsequently granted asylum. "Britain had given shelter to one of the fiercest advocates of the global jihad. Abu Qatada lived and breathed the al-Qaeda ideology, issued religious decrees... allowing Algerian terrorists to commit mass murder in the name of God, and raised hundreds of thousands of pounds for Islamists to carry on the war against Russia in Chechnya," write Sean O'Niell and Daniel McGrory in their 2006 book, The Suicide Factory.

Bisher al-Rawi, a long-time friend of Qatada, was also an informant for MI5 and worked as an intermediary between the British intelligence agency and the high-profile imam. "All I did in Britain was try to help with steps necessary to get a meeting between Abu Qatada and MI5. I was trying to bring them together. MI5 would give me messages to take to Abu Qatada, and Abu Qatada would give me messages to take back to them." Al-Rawi's association with MI5 was later admitted in court papers.

Qatada would later claim that shortly after 9/11 MI5 offered him a passport, an Iranian visa, and an opportunity to escape to Afghanistan. He said he turned down the offer because he did not trust the intelligence agency not to hand him over to the Jordanians, the Egyptians, or the Saudis.

Imam Omar Bakri Mohammed, who help found the Islamist group Hizb ut-Tahrir, and later Al-Muhajiroun, was also an important asset of British intelligence. "The British government knows who we are. MI5 has interrogated us many times. I think now we have something called public immunity," he said in 2001. Mohammed enjoyed immunity despite calling for the assassination of British Prime Minister John Major.

"Freedom and democracy bring nothing but chaos. I am here to bring the message to Britain and to one day fly the black flag of Islam over Downing Street," he declared in 2000. He admitted supporting jihad "verbally, financially, and even militarily" and added that "We have had a lot of volunteers from England wanting to attend camps for military training. We send them to South Africa, Afghanistan, Nigeria, and Kashmir." Mohammed made these statements while under the watchful eye of British intelligence.

Abu Hamza al-Masri, a leading radical imam who ran the Finsbury Park mosque, also worked for British intelligence. In 1997, he told a rally of jihadists in London that they should attack aircraft over London and provided a plan for doing so. The meeting was also attended by Omar Bakri Mohammed. British authorities took no action. The authorities also took no action when al-Masri was implicated in a beating of elderly Muslims at the Finsbury Park mosque.

In June 2001, the Italian Secret Service SISDE said al-Masri had proposed a plot to attack planes, apparently in connection with the G8 summit in Genoa, Italy. The same year an al-Masri associate at the Finsbury Park mosque, Djamel Beghal, was implicated in a plot to attack the US embassy in Paris. "Despite Beghal's clear links to operations in London and Leicester, however, there was no search of the [mosque] building and no attempt to arrest the chief recruiter [Abu Hamza al-Masri] who had led the prayers there. The mosque continued to be at the center of jihad recruitment," write O'Neill and McGrory.

Mohammed Sidique Khan, said to be the lead suicide bomber of the 7/7 attack in London that killed 56 people, attended the Finsbury Park mosque. Khan and fellow suicide bomber Shehzad Tanweer first heard Abu Hamza preach in Leeds, and when Khan arrived at the mosque he carried a letter of recommendation from Haroon Rashid Aswat, a top and high-profile aide to al-Masri. Aswat is considered the mastermind of the 7/7 attack. He is also a British intelligence asset, according to John Loftus, former US government prosecutor and former Army intelligence officer.

"What's really embarrassing is that the entire British police are out chasing [Aswat], and one wing of the British government, MI6 or the British Secret Service, has been hiding him. And this has been a real source of contention between the CIA, the Justice Department, and Britain.... He's a double agent," Loftus told Fox News on July 29, 2005.

Loftus maintains the "Justice Department ordered... Seattle prosecutors not to touch Aswat [because] apparently Aswat was working for British intelligence. Now Aswat's boss, the one-armed [London imam Abu Hamza al-Masri], he gets indicted two years later."

Haroon Rashid Aswat was arrested in Zambia in July 2005 and extradited back to Britain. After he arrived he was not questioned about his role in the 7/7 attack and the authorities said they would not prosecute him for any crime. Instead, they planned to extradite him to the United States where there was a warrant for his arrest in connection with efforts to help start a militant training camp in Oregon in 1999.

The record is clear—British intelligence allows dangerous terrorists to roam freely in the country, protects them, and refuses to prosecute them for plotting and engaging in acts of terror. The establishment media portray this as "intelligence failures," but there is another, more rational explanation—like the CIA, British intelligence is using Islamist terror as part of an Operation Gladio type covert operation to realize a political agenda: a never-ending war on terror that enriches the military industrial complex and extends the surveillance state and expands a repressive police state.

"What we're seeing now is a disgraceful attempt by the government and security services to exploit the valid fears of the British public in order to justify the surveillance of innocent citizens on an extraordinary scale," Green Party leader Natalie Bennett said in 2015.

British PM Theresa May raised the terror threat level to critical following the Manchester attack and has posted the army outside Buckingham Palace, Westminster, and Downing Street. "Today we have 984 members of the military coming forward as requested by the police," said Home Secretary Amber Rudd.

The soldiers will be deployed as part of Operation Temperer. May said troops will be "visible" at large events including concerts and football matches. It is the first time Operation Temperer, organized after the Charlie Hebdo terror attack in Paris in January 2015, has been mobilized.

Operation Temperer provides for up to 5,100 soldiers to be deployed to "augment armed police officers engaged in protective security duties" at key sites in major UK cities.

It is unlikely police and soldiers armed with automatic rifles can indeed prevent a terrorist attack. The move, however, does let the British people know they now live in a police state and may soon be under an emergency decree like the people of France.

Kurt Nimmo, Newsbud Producer & Author, is a writer, editor, producer and researcher based in New Mexico. His research centers on international geopolitics and national politics in the United States. He is the former lead editor and writer for Infowars and now edits Another Day in The Empire. His most recent books are Donald Trump and the War on Islam and Another Day in the Empire: The Reign of George W. Bush and the Total War Neocons. Visit Kurt Nimmo's website here