DAILY MAIL COMMENT: Let tragic Star be the last innocent failed

DAILY MAIL COMMENT: Let tragic Star be the last innocent failed

The first reaction is one of heartbreak. Then incomprehension. Then boiling rage.

Rage that yet another defenceless toddler has been sadistically tortured and murdered in our supposedly civilised country.

Rage that this hideous crime was allowed to happen despite a string of red flags.

And rage that those who failed 16-month-old Star Hobson will probably never be held to account. By the time she lost the fight for life, Star had catastrophic injuries to almost every part of her tiny body.

In a regime of terror lasting months, she was punched and kicked to death by her mother Frankie Smith’s vile, psychopathic girlfriend, Savannah Brockhill.

Five times social services were alerted by concerned relatives. Five times they failed in their duty of care.

The first reaction is one of heartbreak. Then incomprehension. Then boiling rage. Rage that yet another defenceless toddler has been sadistically tortured and murdered in our supposedly civilised country

Inevitably, political correctness played its part. When Star’s great-grandparents warned ‘another Baby P’ was on the cards, social workers accused them of malice because Smith was in a same-sex relationship and her partner had a traveller background. It was an unforgivable slur, which ultimately cost Star her life.

This depressingly familiar story comes less than two weeks after the carbon copy case of six-year-old Arthur Labinjo-Hughes, who was brutally murdered by his stepmother.

And yesterday an inquest heard that another toddler, Ella-Rose Clover, was murdered after doctors failed to identify a sustained campaign of prior abuse.

Will anyone ever be held properly accountable for these outrages? If not, and social workers, medics and police are constantly allowed to duck the blame, lessons will never be learned.

And children will go on dying. Alone, forlorn and forsaken.

Heed Covid rebels, PM

Boris Johnson may have won the battle to impose another gruelling clampdown in the fight against Covid. But rather than toast his success, a chastened Prime Minister is having to lick his wounds.

So furious were Tory MPs about tougher Plan B restrictions, including ineffective and discriminatory vaccine passports, that their rebellion obliterated his majority.

Worse still, the PM endured the indignity of relying on Labour to win the vote – another damaging blow to his fragile authority.

And by releasing a blizzard of dubious statistics to support his case that Omicron is such a deadly threat it requires intrusive and drastic action, he is taking us for fools.

Boris Johnson may have won the battle to impose another gruelling clampdown in the fight against Covid. But rather than toast his success, a chastened Prime Minister is having to lick his wounds

On the day the first major real-world study of the variant shows it to be significantly milder than existing strains, Mr Johnson claims an explosion of cases will buckle the NHS. But will this happen?

Like the Tory rebels, the Mail fears this is a slippery slope to stricter constraints.

Just as the country gets back on its feet, Plan C hovers ominously into view. And what will that entail? Tiers, the rule of six, social distancing, closed pubs and restaurants?

How many more bankrupted businesses, job losses, cancers missed and suicides do we need to say enough is enough?

The PM should keep faith in boosters – not shut Britain down ‘to be on the safe side’. The truth is, it’s not safe. It’s disastrous.

Defying the doomsters

Before the referendum, the International Monetary Fund warned of chilling consequences if Britain voted to leave.

Living standards and house prices would crash and a recession would be triggered. The effects of leaving the EU would be ‘pretty bad to very, very bad’, it said.

How times change. Yesterday the IMF sang from a very different songbook. Our post-pandemic growth is expected to be the highest of any developed nation and ‘major strides’ have been made to develop our post-Brexit trading and financial future.

Let’s just hope this forecast is more accurate than the last.

Yesterday the IMF sang from a very different songbook. Our post-pandemic growth is expected to be the highest of any developed nation and ‘major strides’ have been made to develop our post-Brexit trading and financial future. Pictured: Managing director Kristalina Georgieva

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