Monthly Archives: November 2010

Stop the Fees Rise – protest at London Lib Dem conference– 4th December

Round 4?
http://www.facebook.com/#!/event.php?eid=148974651817209

Protest outside London Lib Dem Conference – Saturday 4th December
Assemble 12noon
Haverstock School, Haverstock Hill, London NW3 2BQ
Nearest tube Chalk Farm
MAP: http://bit.ly/ejufKa

Before the General Election all Lib Dem MPs promised to vote against any attempt to increase tuition fees.

They now plan to break their promise. There is still time to make them keep their promise.

We are calling this peaceful protest outside the Lib Dem London Conference to demand that all London Lib Dem MPs vote against higher fees:
• Vince Cable
• Simon Hughes
• Sarah Teather
• Paul Burstow
• Tom Brake
• Edward Davey
• Lynne Featherstone

You can also write to your MP directly at www.stopfees.org – we have provided a model letter to get you started.

The vote on fees will be taking place within the next three weeks – this is a key opportunity to put pressure on the Lib Dems – please invite all your friends to this event.

Breaking News: Riot Police Storming Lewisham Council Meeting Now!

Latest from councillor shitbag: Protesters attempted to storm the Town Hall. We had to curtail the meeting. A flare was let off. Damage done to building.

Report below from London indymedia

At first, it seemed like a small turnout at the demo called by Lewisham Anti-Cuts Alliance (LACA). The police were expecting decent numbers, and were there to contain a repeat of what happened a couple of weeks ago when the protesters forced the meeting to adjourn. This time we were going to be in the public gallery with a maximum of 40 people.

As I was queueing up for the search and pat down, the 150/200 strong march from Goldsmiths arrived. Speeches were held and all seemed to be going according to time-worn liberal traditions, until a masked protester appeared on the roof of the Town Hall with a banner saying: ‘Commons not Cuts’. They were letting people in 5 by 5 and sending them up in the lift. When it was our turn the security guard said:

‘Believe me, I want to be here as much as you.’

‘No, you don’t understand, we do want to be here.’

As we are waiting in the lobby to be sent up, the crowd charges the door shouting: ‘Let us in!’. The door opens and police tumble in backwards, dancing with protesters. About 20 of us are in. The police scramble to push us out or detain us. I jump in to de-arrest someone and get punched in the face. The security guards are out of control. There are several bloody faces. The glass at the front of the building cracks from the commotion outside. Someone sets of a smoke bomb. We try and board the lift, but the police and guards yank us out. We are trapped in the lobby. CID arrive – it is stalemate – no one is going in or out for the time being. A second smoke bomb is set off and the fire alarm starts. The guards get rid of this one as well. The people from the gallery are sent down and yanked out of the stairwell – they either end up in our group or ejected through the front. The officers draw their batons and tasers – their pupils are dilated. We start shouting: ‘Don’t do what you did to Ian Tomlinson!’ That stops them in their tracks. We call out the numbers of the most violent ones. One by one we get shoved down the stairs and out the back. I get thrown backwards and break my fall by dragging a couple of cops down.

Once outside a group leaves singing: ‘Harry Roberts is our friend, is our friend, is our friend. Harry Roberts is our friend, he kills coppers.’ We make our way to the front, where riot police has arrived with shields, horses and dogs. About 10 vans have blocked the South Circular. ITV is there. There are more charges to the front door. I hear that the meeting has been adjourned. CID target one of the protesters and after attempt to stop them, manage to arrest him. The crowd slowly disperses. We hit the pub.

About an hour after the meeting was adjourned, the cuts vote took place behind closed doors (so much for democracy!). It was 36 for, 3 against, 11 abstentions. All Labour councillors voted in favour of the cuts, the Tory and Green councillors voted against, and the Lib Dems abstained. There is seamless progression from what happened outside Lewisham Town Hall to what happened inside. A council, whose members were elected to serve the people, totally betrayed them by acting on the orders of an unelected ConDem junta which has no legitimacy and even less, a mandate for the most vicious cuts we have seen this side of the 1930′s. The people gathered outside to protest and assert their right of witness. The answer was riot shields, horses, dogs and brutuality to bring home the will of the bond markets to municipal politics.

http://lewishamanticutsalliance.wordpress.com/

I Punched Somebody lol

Laughing boy here can be heard gloating about punching someone in this video. Towards the end of the video (at 9.13 but is worth watching in its entirity) he can be seen grinning to colleagues as he says “I punched somebody”.

With all the talk of violence versus non violence it’s worth remembering that it’s donut munchers like fatboy here who are the ones who turn up tooled up and looking for a fight. Perhaps he was bullied at school. Perhaps he was trying to finally get laid. Why else would a grown man, even an over-grown man, get such a kick out of hitting a kid.

The London Mob Is Back!

London is at last punching above it’s weight again and the youth have shown the way. The demonstrations last Wednesday showed the previous storming of Millbank was not just a flash in the pan. In fact it looks like things are just warming up.

It’s true that Wednesday’s march was good natured and largely peaceful as it left Trafalgar Square. It’s also true that the filth formed a line at Whitehall, abandoning a van in the process, and kettled many of the demonstrators before so much as a placard was ripped up and chucked at the cops.

More important though were London’s teenagers who weren’t prepared to be pushed around by police and fought fiercely to break through police lines more than once. This time many of the kids were masked up and organised. Anarchists may be blamed, and we were certainly there, but we can’t take the credit. This was our children rising up and saying will not tolerate a bunch of chinless twats smashing up our lives. Every last one of them deserves a fucking medal.

As ever the police couldn’t resist escalating a little property damage into broken bones and scared teenagers. For once though the kids gave as good as they got. Panicked coppers were still chasing the kids round the West End late into the evening as horses were repeatedly used in an attempt to disperse protesters.

Suddenly fighting the police was cool again. When police tried to form a second kettle with riot cops and horses, hundreds streamed over fences into an MOD building complex, jumping across ventilation units and fences to escape. Emergency alarms were heard ringing inside the buildings. The fuckers are scared.

Protests are set to continue this Tuesday, with thousands all around the country already signed up. Word is the school and university students were repeatedly cheered at Saturday’s Coalition of Resistance conference. A parents group has been set up on facebook to support them. Old fogies everywhere are heartened and organising. Even the Unions look like finally waking up.

One lesson learnt from Wednesday is that Whitehall is not the best place to end up. Another is to bring warm clothes, provisions and hard liquor just in case. Momentum is ours. Let’s have Cameron’s head on a spike by Crimbo.

Benefit for Simon Chapman and the Thessanoliki 4!

http://www.salonikisolidarity.org.uk/

Nominate Our Class Heroes For A Big Society Award!

David Cameron today called for nominations for a Big Society award for people and organisations involved in “moving power away from central government and giving it to local communities and individuals.”

What a load of fucking shit he talks.  Far be it for us however to damage this brave attempt at public relations and here’s the nominations currently being considered at the void.

Ian Beale

Beale the Squeal, as he likes to be known, has given hours of his time as the economic powerhouse that is Albert Square.  With his tireless dedication to the caf’, the stall and the chippy, Beale has ensured that no-one in Walford has ever had to sign on.  True, he’s a fucking grass, a scab and a parasite on the lives of those around him but that should suit the Tories quite well.  The only downside is he doesn’t actually exist.  Which brings us onto …

Raoul Moat

The people’s choice Moaty gave the filth the run around and kept the nation entertained for days with his continued evasion of police.  His legend status was sadly tarnished however by a history of beating up girlfriends and generally being a bit of a knob.  This could all have been forgiven of course, if only he’d shot more coppers.  As it stands he turned out to be a bit of a disappointment, although he does lead us nicely into …

Gazza

The nation’s favourite cheeky chappy brought a tear to the eyes with his fried chicken and lager mercy mission.  A top footie player to boot he could have been the one, but sadly he also suffers from a bit of a dodgy past and possibly an even dodgier future.  Good bloke to have on your side if you set out on a murderous rampage though and deserves a mention just for that.  But our nomination is going to …

The Millbank Rioters

Without a shadow of a doubt the Millbank protesters who not only trashed the Tory Headquarters but also gave hope to a nation deserve one of these prestigious awards.  With those that have least facing the biggest assault on their living standards in living memory they have set the course for a fightback that will be about more than standing in the rain listening to Tony Benn.   Let’s hope they keep it up this Wednesday.

So that’s our nomination sorted.  Also rans were Fitwatch for their continued humiliation of the Metropolitan Police, but we suspect they wouldn’t appreciate a nomination  The public school poisoner could’ve been a contender except it probably wasn’t a very good idea really and anyway he fucked it up.  Finally veteran anarchist, Class War founder and now political blogger Ian Bone is an obvious candidate.  It’s just we heard he already nominated himself.  Twice.

You can send your nominations to:  http://www.number10.gov.uk/bigsocietyawards

It would be a shame if they had their time wasted chasing up fictitious nominations.

This post has also appeared on The Fanatic

School’s Out Forever!

Or at least it will be if the fucking Tories get their way.  This week’s school walk outs and student protests will see tens, nay hundreds of thousands of school kids and students downing excercise books to protest at the upcoming cuts.

Occupations and mass demonstrations are expected every-fucking-where.  The National Union of Teachers have said it’s okay kids, we’re on your side. Everyone should show solidarity this week and get out on the streets with them, wherever they may be.  SOAS students couldn’t wait and are in occupation already.

In London things kick off with a Carnival of Resistance leaving the University of London Union at 11am.  This will head to Trafalgar Square where the walks-out will converge. Word is Trafalgar Square is just the meeting point so be ready to move quickly.  Direct Action is being called for, fuck being stewarded from A to B.   The fun is set to continue into the evening with a demonstration called outside Downing Street for 6pm.  Smaller demonstrations and actions are also likely in and around London and the Home Counties whilst some towns and cities could see huge protests.  You can find out what’s going on near you here.

Fitwatch have good advice as ever for all attending.

Pic above borrowed from this bloke.

Iain Duncan Smith – Lying and Stupid

We like to give people the benefit of the doubt so we recently posed the question of whether Iain Duncan Smith was lying about Housing Benefit or just a bit thick.  The answer turns out to be both.

It was yesterday revealed that baldyman had lied about the source of his claim that the rental market was falling except for those rents paid by Local Housing Allowance (LHA).  He claimed the statistics he used came from the Office of National Statistics.  They actually came from one property agent, owned by the Daily Mail.  Which coincidentally is where most of his policies come from.

Even most Daily Mail readers don’t really believe a lot of the crap they run on the front page (my nan just likes the crossword), but poor old baldyman appears to have swallowed it hook, line and sinker.  All those years locked up in his think tank, allegedly planning radical reform of the benefit system and it seems he was actually just sitting around reading the paper and watching Jeremy Kyle.  The lazy fucking scrounger.

The rental market it actually buoyant.  Local Housing Allowance rates seem to have little impact.  He is pursuing a policy that will cause mass homelessness and still cost a fortune.  And his plans for a Universal Credit are an even bigger joke.  But more of that later.

Meanwhile anger is growing.  IDS and his lib dem lapdog were met by protesters outside a homeless hostel in Camden this week.

Fitted up, Beaten up, Banged up – Interview With Simon Chapman

Since there’s been a lot of talk of dodgy cops on here recently (for anyone who’s counting 90 websites are now carrying the piece which led to fitwatch being closed by the filth) it seem a good time to publish this interview with Simon Chapman which first appeared in Freedom Newspaper. Simon faces court in January to fight a sentence of 8 years after being arrested and fit up by Greek police way back in 2003.

What was happening in Thessaloniki in 2003 and why did you go?

In June 2003 there was going to be summit of the European Union heads of state. Previous summits had seen large mobilisations against them. I had been to a few info-nights about the coming mobilisations in Greece and we knew it could be a big one. I’d heard a lot about the anarchist scene in Greece so I decided to go and find out for myself.

What was the mobilisation in Thessaloniki like?

There was a broad spectrum of people, from anarchists, migrant groups, extra-parliamentary left, communists, trade unionists and so on. There were people from all over Greece and a fair proportion of people from across Europe and the world.

There was a demonstration in solidarity with migrants on the day before the summit started. That passed off relatively peacefully. The next day, the EU Summit itself was held at a conference centre outside of Thessaloniki so people took hired coaches up there. The cops gassed everyone as per usual and it was pretty chaotic.

I arrived in Thessaloniki later that evening and headed for the Polytechnic, which had been occupied to function as a convergence space. The main demonstration would take place in central Thessaloniki the next day, 21 June 2003.

What happened on the day you were arrested?

Various blocks left from the Polytechnic and started making their way towards the centre of town. We were near the back of one of them when tear gas canisters started raining down on us. There was total chaos, people running in all directions. I lost the people with me almost immediately.

I was lost in the gas cloud when suddenly I was hit very hard on my head and I tried to run and was hit many more times. I tried to keep moving but fell down to the pavement. By now there must have been at least four cops beating me all over, my head, my legs, everywhere. My glasses got kicked into my face and lost. If you have to rate cops for good beatings then I reckon the Greeks are in the premier division.

I was dragged to the side of kerb and made to sit down. Riot police placed black rucksacks next to me and started collecting molotovs abandoned in the street and placing them next to me or in the rucksacks. I was taken down a side street and the squad of police wanted me to carry the bags and I refused, so they gently persuaded me with batons and fists. I gave in. I had a strong impression of being fitted up.

So the cops made me carry two black rucksacks full of molotovs, strapped to my chest. Some of the bottles were leaking petrol and soon my shirt and trousers were completely soaked in it. If I had caught fire I would have been a human torch, no hope of survival. They put my hands in the twist position in rigid handcuffs, very tightly, behind my back.

The police took me out with them like a human shield to continue attacking the demonstrators, who were throwing molotovs and stones and anything they could find at the police, and therefore at me too. I had a cop holding each arm dragging me along, but of course they had armour and shields. I’m in the front-line, except on the wrong side. Every now and then the team of cops escorting me would stop for a break, and take turns beating me up. After two hours of this they took me to a hospital and I got my head stitched up.

There had been around a hundred arrests by the end of the evening, and they were gradually released over the next couple of days, leaving seven of us behind: Spyros, Dimitris and Michaelis (Greek), Fernando and Carlos (Spanish) and Kastro, a Syrian immigrant, and me.

A film crew had been nearby when the cops were planting the rucksacks on me, and this had been broadcast live nationally at the time, and then repeated on all the channels. My lawyer presented the video evidence and photos which clearly exonerated me. The prosecutor just stuffed the evidence in an envelope without looking at it and put it into a filing cabinet. He said something in Greek and our lawyers looked shocked. The seven of us were being remanded.

What was it like being a British prisoner in a Greek prison?

The other prisoners were generally sound. The first bit of Greek that I learnt was “Give me a cigarette”. A few spoke english very well so I picked up the rules, such as they existed. One guy – who on reflection seemed to be the prison daddy – spoke excellent english and told me that I had nothing to worry about – if I didn’t start any trouble, I’d be fine. Except I couldn’t see, or understand anyone, or work out how the fuck people live in a country where it is more than 45 degrees celsius all day every day.

The first couple of weeks were the most difficult as I couldn’t see anything, as my glasses had been smashed when I was arrested. I’m really very short-sighted, but thankfully a friend knew where I had last had my eyes tested and she sorted me out some new specs and sent them over to Greece. The day they arrived was one of the best days I had – hey, I could read! If only I had some books! And its nice to recognise people in the corridor and not fall over their feet.

How did the hunger strike come about?

Kastro, one of the seven prisoners, wanted to start almost immediately in order for us to get bailed out of remand real quick, but we were told to wait a couple of months as the entire legal system in Greece grinds to a halt over the summer. So we had time to prepare ourselves: you can’t just go from a normal diet to a hunger strike.

We ate well over the summer but then started reducing our intake, stopping eating red meat, then dairy products, then pasta, then bread, then vegetables and so on, until in the last weeks before the hunger strike was due to begin in October, we survived on just fruit juice. So we had already lost a fair bit of weight by the time we officially notified the prison governor of the start of the hunger strike.

Can you tell us something about the solidarity campaign that was forming in Britain and elsewhere? How did this affect you, the defendants?

It was vital for us in so many ways. Some things were just practical, like paying money into our prison accounts so we could buy extras from the shop. The campaign grew rapidly, so by the time the hunger strike started there were meetings, assemblies, demonstrations, occupations all over Greece, every day.

The London-based solidarity campaign were doing benefits, direct action, media interviews daily. The solidarity campaigns provided us with direct material assistance, and more importantly, hope. We never felt alone.

I received stacks of letters and books – writing to prisoners is so important, even if you don’t have much to say. I’d get letters from places like Chile, with a photo of a solidarity demonstration outside the Greek embassy in Santiago. Writing to prisoners always sends hope, a message from somewhere else, an understanding of the prisoners’ solitude.

What were your best and worst prison experiences?

They happened simultaneously: at the end of the hunger strike, we were suddenly told we were being released, and then we were told a minute later that our lovers and our friends had been arrested outside the prison. And there was a good chance that Kastro would be arrested by immigration police because they thought he was an illegal.

So we pushed these carts with our belongings, clothes, books and headed for the exit of Korydallos prison in Athens. And there are beautiful gardens, immaculate green lawns, flower beds all the way up to the main gate.

This is the way that visitors come through: and there are dozens of rabbits hopping across the grass, eating the flowers. When we see this, we also know that there could be hundreds of riot police outside the prison gates. It was a strange walk, knowing you’re walking towards the prison exit, but at the same time we had no idea what waited for us on the other side.

How long were you locked up in total, and how did it feel being released?

I was arrested on 21 June and released on bail five months later on 27 November 2003. My hunger strike had lasted the last 53 days. We were bailed but had to stay in Greece: this lasted a few months, until the charges against us were dropped in February 2004.

The night after our release there was a benefit party at Villa Amalias, a squat in Athens. We all went along but ended up being overwhelmed by how people are having a great celebration for our freedom, and they know everything about us through the solidarity campaign, but at the same time we don’t really know anyone. Being lonely in a crowd of five hundred people.

Most of the ex-prisoners ended up sitting upstairs in a quiet room because, certainly for me, I wasn’t ready to deal with that many people in one hit. I needed time to think about real life again, to start eating again, though being careful about what we ate so as to not over-stress our digestive systems. Lots of noodle soup.

Can you explain what happened during the first trial in 2008?

I got a call in autumn 2005 from my lawyer saying that the prosecutor had appealed against the original decision to drop the charges. There were a lot of legal arguments and appeals from both defence and prosecution over the next few years, until in the end a trial date was set for January 2008.

My lawyer had said it wasn’t necessary for me to attend the trial, which was perhaps not a bright idea because I was convicted on all counts, possession and use of explosives – the molotovs, resisting arrest and riot. I was sentenced to eight and a half years prison, suspended until the Appeal trial which determines your final sentence. Three others of the original seven prisoners were also convicted and given similar sentences. Since we found out about the new trial date we have had a lot of preparation to do to get it right this time.

What are your feelings about the upcoming trial in January?

I had got psyched up for the appeal trial to take place in September recently, but for various reasons it got delayed until January 2011: its frustrating but at the same time the delay gives us more time to work on our defence, and to raise funds to cover the court costs. The lawyers are working for free but there are court expenses that have to be paid.

How would you describe the Greek anarchist scene? Compared to the English?

In the major cities you see anarchist graffiti everywhere, and anarchist ideas seem to have a higher profile there. At the same time, their society is deeply polarised. The movement there is based on lots of small local groups that from time to time work together, or sometimes against each other.

Here’s another example of the difference: in London we have Critical Mass bicycle rides to stop the traffic. In Athens, there are motorbike demonstrations, three hundred motos roaring up to the prison gates. After revving their engines and making an incredible amount of noise, they split but then regrouped and ended up outside the official residency of the prime minister of Greece, they got there before the pigs who turned up too late, and then gassed everyone, including themselves, because they had forgotten to put their own gas masks on. Anarchists in Greece get the job done.

Can you see a connection between the events of 2003 and the current economic and political situation in Greece?

The original slogans against the 2003 EU summit said “No to the Europe of bankers and bosses”. The same is true today. There are millions on strike against bankers’ austerity cuts across Europe, in Greece, in Germany, in France, everywhere. Our analysis of the conflict of interest between bosses, bankers and pigs on one side, and the working people on the other side has gained clarity in these years of capitalist crisis. We need to decide which side we are on. And also we have to be conscious of the consequences of resistance. They might beat us up, they might put us in prison, they might fuck us over for years. But the resistance is everywhere. And we wont stop.

Join the facebook page and support the Thessaloniki 4 Campaign and if your in London there’s a benefit on Saturday 27th November and more info here on how to help.

http://www.salonikisolidarity.org.uk/

Fitwatch Is Back!

Fitwatch is back online despite the best efforts of the police to silence them!  Whilst not yet available to everyone on all browsers due to some technical shit we don’t understand you can see it at: http://www.fitwatch.org.uk/ and if that don’t work go to: http://209.234.253.23/ which should.