Pat on back for cops

Something that should invariably pain police is the drowning of their crime prevention successes by the public hysteria over crime.

It doesn't help also that the relatively quiet festive season - unencumbered by the usual cash-in-transit heists and other major type of robberies - remains unheralded by a public immersed in pre-Christmas revelry.

Not surprisingly, the four robbery attempts foiled by police in the past 48 hours have passed as a mundane daily public disturbance.

But, were it not for the timely police intervention in these crimes, innocent lives would have been lost and the festive euphoria shattered.

The public euphoria generated by the success of police operations, which have yielded 24 heist gang suspects since Sunday, cannot be underestimated.

Two suspects were shot dead and six of their alleged accomplices arrested in a foiled robbery in Woodmead, Johannesburg, yesterday. In the other two foiled robberies on the same day, 18 suspects were arrested in Irene, Pretoria, and in Ulundi, KwaZulu-Natal - a day after seven robbers were bust near Edenvale in Ekurhuleni.

The significance of swift police action in all the incidents becomes more apparent as we appreciate their brave efforts and determination to protect the public.