COBRA is the British Government’s emergency response committee set up to respond to a national or regional crisis. Standing for Cabinet Office Briefing Room A, the COBRA Committee comes together in moments of perceived crisis under the chairmanship of either the Prime Minister or the Home Secretary.
At COBRA meetings, decisions and a possible response, sometimes simply a press conference, are made under real or imagined conditions of emergency and/or crisis. *
The committee can evoke emergency powers such as suspending Parliament or restricting movement. Such emergency -based responses have ranged from tackling Ash Dieback disease to the deployment of military hardware on civilian rooftops during the London Olympics.
Emergency and crisis-based politics are becoming increasingly common as modes of contemporary governance in an age of hyped terrorism and economic and environmental crises.