A full ten hours after the first targeted political assassination in Maltese political history and our law enforcement agencies and their political masters have not yet assumed any form of responsibility for their outrageous failure to provide security for the most obvious target for organised crime and institutionalised corruption.

When Daphne Caruana Galizia’s blog would go silent for more than a handful of days her hundreds of thousands of readers suppressed the ugliest fears that something had happened to her. We’d be relieved to find she’d come back from a holiday or from some days focused on one of her magazine publications.

We had these scary thoughts because we knew, as well as she did, as well as anyone did, that she took risks no one else would dare take. She spoke truth to power, to people who were in no habit to deal with tough investigative journalism.

Almost everyone was shocked at what happened today. Few can say they were surprised. But we could not do much about it.

The police could have. The police should have. They did not need to wait for her to file a police report just a few days ago on specific threats she was receiving. It should not have been necessary to have a sophisticated intelligence agency to determine that Daphne Caruana Galizia’s life was in clear and present danger.

This is not a case of ‘wara kulħadd bravu’. We all knew this could happen. We just lived with the vain hope it would not.

All those motor-cycle outriders flashing lights to help the prime minister’s wife get to her nail technician 5 minutes sooner should have been deployed protecting the last defender of our democracy.

And now we lost Daphne Caruana Galizia not because of anything she did or wrote but because of the spiteful evil that wanted her out of their way and the complicit indifference of the police whose job is to defend us – especially the most obvious targets among us – from that evil.

That Daphne Caruana Galizia died the way she did – a planned assassination designed for spectacle, an extent of brutality never seen in this country before now – is aggravated by the naked fact the police failed to protect her.

And we can see why. Not because they’re stupid and incompetent. But for the same reasons Daphne Caruana Galizia criticised them repeatedly and harshly: starting with the clown who heads them. The police are complicit in the workings of organised crime and institutionalised corruption. They failed to protect her in order to ensure they are not a hindrance to those who wanted to do away with her.

No wonder the Chief Justice two weeks ago warned us no longer to rely on the courts for justice since the police are out of the control of the courts and impunity has become the order of the day. He spoke truthfully. But unknowingly he spoke prophetically.

Now we ask the FBI to step in and investigate. Did we not think to keep an eye on her car and her movements to ensure no one offs her?

Daphne Caruana Galizia’s husband and her children demand justice. They are entitled to it. They know better than to hope for it while the same police who left Daphne Caruana Galizia without protection investigate her murder.

Daphne Caruana Galizia ended her life the way she lived it, uncovering the glaring failures of our institutions and the incompetent people who have been placed as puppets for the people of power who will stop at nothing to retain it. They could not replace Daphne Caruana Galizia. They killed her instead.

The least the police minister should do before sunrise is assume responsibility, if for nothing else, for the complete failure to protect Daphne Caruana Galizia, and resign.

That will be a timid start.