December 9th day of action against cuts and fees

Middlesex University.

Tens of thousands of school and university students will walk out of class again today another national day of action against cuts and tuition fees.

Submitted by Ed on December 9, 2010

Protests have seen demonstrations across the country with occupations at universities, council buildings and political party offices across the UK. More action is predicted to happen as a result of today's day of action.

Reports of police violence and attempted 'kettling' are not expected to put off protesters. Students will likely be joined by others also affected by the austerity measures such as members of the RMT, who are thought to be having a block on the student demonstration on Parliament.

We will update this page regularly as the day develops. Please post local reports in the comments below.

- The day of action on the 9th has had a long run up, with several universities such as Leeds and UCL going into their second or third week of occupation, and new occupations starting at several universities including Goldsmiths. This was also the first time that schools began occupations, with a 24 hour sit-in/teach-in at Camden School for Girls, and another one at Acland Burghley in Camden - mixed reports about what actually happened since the school was apparently closed for the afternoon, but occupiers went in anyway. We have an unconfirmed report of a sit-in at Stoke Newington school, Londonist reported that Islington Sixth Form college was closed all day Wednesday after management heard about student plans for an occupation in advance.

- 12:20pm Several thousand congregating around ULU and Trafalgar Square. Over 1,000 police on duty. 'Rolling kettle forming at ULU, 70 TSG in front' According to @ucloccupation

- 12:30pm Debate starts in parliament, early day motions all ignored by the speaker, so the vote is on in about 5 hours. Hopefully the almost inevitable yes vote may be just the start of the anti cuts movement.

- 12:35pm @directreaction: Police try to stop LSE and Kings students marching over Waterloo bridge. Many break through. Situation already very tense.

- 12:40pm Police have blocked the march at Malet Street according to @ucloccupation

- 12:49pm UCL Occupation has started a live map of the protests with particular attention to police deployments.

- 12:52pm Several people on twitter describe being 'kettled by socialists giving speeches', sounds about right for the Labour left and SWP, let them go!

- 13:13pm @PennyRed "Omg the kids just charged through the line. I can see police beating kids."

- 13:15pm First sighting in the UK of Italian-style literary riot shields http://lsjsn.files.wordpress.com/2010/12/polestyrene-books-13-00.jpg

- 13:25pm @ncloccupation 20 protesters stormed meeting with Newcastle Vice Chancellor.

- 13:26pm - Parliament Square sealed off.

- 13:34pm - Guardian reports that "three protesters have just been ejected from the public gallery in the Commons because they were chanting slogans."

- 13:45pm - LSJSN blog post this youtube video from Trafalgar Square:

- 13:50pm London protest reaches Parliament square.

- 14:23pm Protesters kettled in parliament square, which had previously been declared off limits. Six horses arrived in one corner, fences are being pushed against, six lines deep of riot police behind.[/b]

- 14:35 BBC helicopter shows three metal barriers being carried over the heads of protesters towards police lines.

- 14:45pm People blocking traffic on Vauxhall bridge.

- 14:54 Line of students has formed a human shield to prevent mounted police entering parliament square.

- 14:59 Newcastle Occupation has published photos from the protest there - lots of people, lots of mounted police.

- 15:03 Photo of fences being torn down at parliament square within the past hour.
- 15:33 Police hitting protesters with batons, someone in a wheelchair dragged behind police lines, @PennryRed reports that one of the Guardian's journalists was "beaten bloody" with a baton. Lots of paint thrown at the police. Around Holborn several students with large books trying to push back police lines.

- 15:38pm Horse charge outside Westminster Abbey - caught on BBC News 24.

- 16:30pm Wheelchair user dragged from wheelchair (and then to the ground according to the Guardian) by the police - http://twitpic.com/3ed5tq

- 16:56pm Very large bonfire lit in Parliament square.

- 17:42pm Vote passed, 21 majority.

- 18:09pm What looks like a baton charge by 30-odd police in parliament square visible on the BBC helicopter footage, no mention of it at all in the commentary.

Comments

Mike Harman

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Mike Harman on December 9, 2010

Article from one of the occupiers of Goldsmiths: http://libcom.org/library/statement-goldsmiths-occupation-08122010

Video of the occupation:

Mike Harman

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Mike Harman on December 9, 2010

Guardian has posted an article about a woman who was knocked unconscious by police then denied medical attention for two hours during the November 30th kettle - http://www.guardian.co.uk/education/2010/dec/08/student-fees-protests-woman-police

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 9, 2010

This is today's listed events for the Exeter occupation (Who are keeping some people in occupation with a delegation being sent to London), apparently including a talk on Anarchism at 7:00pm:

9.30 Yoga
10.00 'Welcome to the Occupation' meeting and ITV turn up
11.00 Prof Richard Seyford, Classics department: gave an inspiring speech soon after the occupation began
12.15 Prof Philip Henscher, English department
13.00-ish LUNCH
14.00 Dr Ian Cook, Geography department: "critical pedagogy"
15.00 Discussion group: "critical theory of protest"
16.00 Philosophy Society students' debate: "ethics of peaceful protest"
17.00 Preparation for action relating to the Commons vote
18.00 Watching the vote, with action to be discussed
19.00 Exeter Anarchist Reading Group http://blogs.exeter.ac.uk/radicalideas – Robin Dunford speaks on "anarchism and complexity"
21.00 Films and music

mikail firtinaci

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by mikail firtinaci on December 9, 2010

I am following the struggle happening over there with excitement. Here in Turkey there is an incredible repression and media hypocrisy going on right now. Even the slightest sign of protest is facing with severe oppression. Even raising your voice against the PM can end with severe imprisonments. So called liberal media and the so called social democrats are doing nothing but joining in with the government and police in approving harsh measures against the students...

Moreover the conditions of the students are terrible. Most of them even does not have a chance to find a proper job after graduation. For instance there are about 300.000 unemployed teachers and each year 40.000 more are graduating. The living conditions are even worse. No need to mention the impossibility of reproduction...

So your struggle over there is most meaningful here in Turkey as much as it is in England. You are aspiring courage and hope. In solidarity with you in your fight today!

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 9, 2010

Apparently some of the speakers at the ULU rally are calling for a general strike in March.

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 9, 2010

Apparently the crowd have had enough of speeches...:

"Student just jumped the speakers platform, grabbed the mic and led a chant of "march!" #dayx3"

playinghob

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by playinghob on December 9, 2010

In parliament sq area from 1 to 3pm. Police with drawn batons waded into protesters by George Canning statue on the Sq. Fireworks and flares thrown in response (not before). Around 1.45.

Groups of protesters of between 20 and 50 wandering around Victoria St , Whitehall and surrounding streets playing cat and mouse with the police who appear pretty overstretched. Brilliant to watch the protesters break ranks to avoid being kettled then regrouping! A lot of police baiting by little kids aged 13-15!

Victoria and Westminster stations closed.

Fences around Sq pushed down and Sq occupied - these people will inevitably be corralled. Spotted RMT banner entering area.

When I left more police entering area. However, observed groups of protesters still heading there. A group of around 50 school students in uniform held by police close to St James Park tube.

Mike Harman

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Mike Harman on December 9, 2010

Can't fucking deny there was a police charge this time. Could get really nasty.

Boris Badenov

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Boris Badenov on December 9, 2010

Looks like the tuition bill just passed.

Jenre

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Jenre on December 9, 2010

i dont think i've ever heard the term "working class" so much on TV before (by protesters)

Jenre

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Jenre on December 9, 2010

who organised this candlelit vigil the bbc and sky are talking about? NUS?

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 9, 2010

What's happened to the Twitter feeds? The updates now seem to consist entirely of re-tweeting jokes about Nick Clegg. Where have all the on-the-ground updates gone?

Mark.

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Mark. on December 9, 2010

Photos from earlier in the day

Video

Quote on the Guardian live coverage about an hour ago:

I've just recieved a phonecall from my partner who has been badly injured at the protest. Apparently police contained a group of passive protesters who, when asked if they could get out, were set towards another blockade.


My partner was pushed forward and was knocked unconscious by a police officer. Bleeding and injured he asked if he could get medical attention to his head wound but was paid no attention to.
Thanks to two members of the public he was carried out towards medical assistance, still within the containment, to get his head bandaged. When he called me he was still being contained even though he was making it aware to police surrounding that he was experiencing headaches and had clearly been hurt.

Aaron Porter was on the BBC a while ago criticising protestors for being violent. He didn't have anything to say about the police.

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 9, 2010

Apparently protestors are trying to storm the treasury:

'We want our money back!'

Submitted by Joseph Kay on December 9, 2010

Jenre

who organised this candlelit vigil the bbc and sky are talking about? NUS?

NUS & UCU. Nobody went. Sky reporter stood on an empty street and said that all the people who wanted to go were 'trapped', they certainly weren't gleefully rioting on the split screen. Also candles were banned, it was going to be a glowstick vigil but the organisers didn't even turn up. Recuperation fail.

Submitted by Uncreative on December 9, 2010

Joseph Kay

Jenre

who organised this candlelit vigil the bbc and sky are talking about? NUS?

NUS & UCU. Nobody went. Sky reporter stood on an empty street and said that all the people who wanted to go were 'trapped', they certainly weren't gleefully rioting on the split screen. Also candles were banned, it was going to be a glowstick vigil but the organisers didn't even turn up. Recuperation fail.

Thats pretty funny :lol:

According to AP Prince Charles car got a bit of a kicking as well.

Submitted by Jenre on December 9, 2010

yeah i heard the man from sky which is why I asked.. he also called people "idiots" who smashed windows at the supreme court..

god BBC news and sky are really messing with my blood pressure

Jenre

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Jenre on December 9, 2010

Spokesperson at Scotland yard claims protesters using "acts of terror"... shocking language

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 9, 2010

I really don't know how this is going to go... what's going to happen next?

I get the feeling the anger's not growing less but getting more intense...

Django

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Django on December 9, 2010

The Grauniad is saying that a car containing Prince Charles and Camilla was attacked by protestors. I lol'd.

Jenre

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Jenre on December 9, 2010

seems prince charles car was kicked before it drove away.... WOW. what an attack

EDIT: seems they smashed a window and covered it in white paint..

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-11965454

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 9, 2010

Daily Mail says it was 'teh anarchistz'.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1337088/TUITION-FEES-VOTE-PROTEST-Charles-Camillas-car-attacked-thousands-students-descend-Parliament.html

Boris Badenov

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Boris Badenov on December 9, 2010

we all know it was the ICC though.

Submitted by miles on December 9, 2010

mateofthebloke

we all know it was the ICC though.

Actually I've been waiting for alf to get back to me on the nights activities, but I'm glad we managed to retain overall control from our world headquarters :lol:

Submitted by Jenre on December 9, 2010

Auto

Daily Mail says it was 'teh anarchistz'.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1337088/TUITION-FEES-VOTE-PROTEST-Charles-Camillas-car-attacked-thousands-students-descend-Parliament.html

you almost got me to read the daily mail comments then... i managed to resist tho. can you die from anger?

Jenre

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Jenre on December 9, 2010

bbc reporter (browne?) blaming anarchists for violence. name-checking the wombles and whitechapel anarchist group

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 9, 2010

You know, recently I watched a youtube video of the news broadcasts the evening after the poll tax riots. It was 'anarchists' wot dun it back then, as well.

Boris Badenov

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Boris Badenov on December 9, 2010

basically the entire UK media, from what I can tell, are still trying, despite reality, to enforce the dichotomy of peaceful majority vs. violent minority, 'anarchists' being of course the obvious choice to describe the latter group, regardless of politics.

playinghob

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by playinghob on December 9, 2010

mateofthebloke wrote:
we all know it was the ICC though

Well I can vouch for the fact that 300 of the 'Revolt in universities, colleges, schools: A beacon for the whole working class' were distributed in parliament square, so maybe you are correct!

Steven.

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Steven. on December 9, 2010

Just got back - went down to the London demonstrations after work.

By the time I got there you couldn't get into Parliament Square, a friend inside told me there were maybe 5000 people kettle the inside. I was on Whitehall with a group of 500 people, a lot of 16 to 18 year old kids, some older people, RMT etc.

They were stopped by a pretty solid police line.

After a while a group of kids started heading up towards Trafalgar Square shouting "to the West End!", and pretty much got everyone to follow them, running at quite a fast pace. Few police vans screech to head to try to head people off. Unfortunately, the crowd got split by a big group of people climbing up on to Nelson's column and starting chanting. Then a lot of people followed them, so they were basically kettling themselves. A fair few people had grabbed building materials up Whitehall, but when the crowd got diverted into Trafalgar Square, they just all threw them into the fountains. A bit of a waste!

Then a bunch of kids went up to the giant Christmas tree and started trying to pull it down. A line of riot police came down from the National Gallery, looking like they were going to try to defend the tree! But then the kids gave up.

A breakaway of about 200 then went up Charing Cross Road, pretty lively, blocking roads then went onto Oxford Street, with no police around. Then I came home.

In related news, looks like someone at the government wants to embarrass the NUS, as e-mails have been leaked from the NUS supporting massive cuts in education:
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/education/universityeducation/8190379/National-Union-of-Students-secretly-urged-Government-to-make-deep-cuts-in-student-grants.html

Hilarious about Prince Charles!

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 9, 2010

Well I think they just don't want people to realise that sometimes people get angry and do shit.

Though I personally think the false dichotomy is beginning to crack for some people. I'm getting the same feeling tonight as I had when Millbank got put in...

bricolage

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by bricolage on December 9, 2010

I swear the wombles haven't really existed for years yet this still get blamed? hilarious.

Ellar

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Ellar on December 9, 2010

"Thousands and thousands of young people, workers and lecturers have been kettled for 6 hours and up in Parliament Square and now on Westminster Bridge for more than an hour. No access to toilets, water or food. It is very cold. Please spread and disseminate this message."

I just got this text from a friend, I wasn't sure what to do, I THOUGHT MORE EXPERIANCED COMRADES Might be able to spread it better.

bricolage

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by bricolage on December 9, 2010

they were letting people out of the kettle earlier one by one, I got out then at about 8. If things started kicking off again though it doesn't surprise me that they closed it.

ernie

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by ernie on December 9, 2010

On newsnight they interviewed a couple of the occupiers at LSE clearly in an effort to get them to condemn the "violence" but they would not and said the violence came from the police. The reporter clear felt that all that mattered in this assignment was to find someone to condemn "the violence".
They also had a studio discussion between Wiilets and three students, who shredded his pathetic efforts to say this attacks is really something good for the plebs if only they would understand. Again the reporter tried to get one of the students to denounce "the violence" but she came back with the story of her friend ending up in hospital with a fractured clavicle after being crushed under police barriers.

Ed

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Ed on December 9, 2010

Some cracking videos of the day.. the first won probably wins first place though the third one probably comes close due to journos skateboarding helmet.. :)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PRKcPZt61SQ&feature=channel

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-11960242

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-11962910

Joseph Kay

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Joseph Kay on December 10, 2010

in the second one she keeps talking about "provoked attacks" on police. accidental honesty!

Mike Harman

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Mike Harman on December 10, 2010

Still hundreds of people kettled on Westminster bridge, 1.30am there now: http://twitpic.com/3egl3y

Mark.

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Mark. on December 10, 2010

A quote on the kettling from the Guardian live coverage

We were forced back all the way back up to the corner of Whitehall and Parliament Square where the police were flanking us on all sides and at one side it was kicking off. They then proceeded to push us all together forcing us 'back' 'back' back' – until we had nowhere to go. I saw people being directly punched in the head by police and hit using the edge of riot shields. We were squeezed tightly together, funnelled into a gap between police vans and a wall. The police didn't seem to know where they were pushing us. People were getting crushed against walls and having to scramble over them and climb up onto ledges of the surrounding buildings to escape the surges of the crowd.

They held us there for another hour, while the crowd just got more tightly packed and panicked. The atmosphere got pretty ugly and desperate at that point. People were crying and really getting hurt. It felt like if something, like the meshed netting over a basement drop I was forced to climb up on, caved in, a very serious situation indeed could easily have been created, initiated by the police behaviour.

Finally, after hours of containment they released the kettle and at about 6.30pm allowed people to leave in small groups.

Mike Harman

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Mike Harman on December 10, 2010

Police batoning and kicking someone on the ground:

Mike Harman

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Mike Harman on December 10, 2010

Guardian video following Birmingham and Westminster Kingsway students for the day: http://www.guardian.co.uk/education/video/2010/dec/10/student-fees-protest-london-video

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 10, 2010

So... what now?

Mike Harman

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Mike Harman on December 10, 2010

Another video of police whacking people with batons and riot shields - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wyXJyuEHQxA

Seems like people were more prepared for this to happen than last time, so more cameras (or may just up on services quicker).

As to what next, I'm wondering how many occupations will continue into next week, whether new ones will start up this week etc. That's probably the first indication of what might happen.

There's an EMA protest next week, and also the benefits and housing day of action. It's been so confusing the past couple of weeks that it's obvious most people were focused on yesterday.

It's hard to tell from here whether people on the protests were hoping for a 'victory' yesterday and went home disappointed/ feeling resigned, or were expecting it and are now even angrier.

Ed

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Ed on December 10, 2010

Surely there has to be another day of action called soon.. like in France during the CPE, the protests actually really got going once the law was actually passed. I think this is the really 'make or break' moment for the movement..

The most important thing for me though is that (if the reform does stay) students don't just see it as 'us losing' and then back out from the political arena. The obvious strategy that the government will have for pushing through these cuts will be 'one sector at a time' and it'll be important that school and uni students can be mobilised in support of others in the near future. I was thinking that a day of action on the same day as a tube strike, for instance, would completely paralyse London. Now that would be an interesting development (even if it does seem a bit far off now..

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 10, 2010

Jesus...

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/crime/brain-op-for-student-hit-by-truncheon-2156207.html

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 10, 2010

Someone a couple of weeks back was asking what good the occupations were - now I think I see where they have a useful role. A lot of the media is talking to them as student-representative bodies instead of the NUS (1922-2010, RIP). They are a) forming pockets of organisation for the continuity of protest and b) possibly facilitating/cementing a change in mood by refusing to 'condemn the violence' as the NUS would have undoubtedly done.

These are interesting times. Currently the news is dominated by reactionary opinion... but we'll see what happens if more news of protestor injuries/police attacks come to light...

Spartacus

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Spartacus on December 10, 2010

excellent feed here, i'm sure i'm not the only one finally feeling that i was born 10 years too early rather than too late...

couple of videos of protesters pushing back against police:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iHBjb4CqZzg
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RkS4zhX9AIg

what are the feelings people get from those not directly connected to protests (at work etc.)? while i was home most people seemed pretty supportive, my dad who was never particularly pro-property destruction during the anti-summit protest era seemed to think it was brilliant that students had smashed millbank and pissed in clegg's letterbox, is that a general thing?

Submitted by Auto on December 10, 2010

Spartacus

what are the feelings people get from those not directly connected to protests (at work etc.)? while i was home most people seemed pretty supportive, my dad who was never particularly pro-property destruction during the anti-summit protest era seemed to think it was brilliant that students had smashed millbank and pissed in clegg's letterbox, is that a general thing?

From the people I know, there's the usual right wingers buying the Daily Mail spin on things... but to be honest I feel they're in the minority. It seems to me that most people, while not glad about the violence, are at the same time not really condemning it. I think things are yet to sink in.

And from my friends who are still students? There seems to be a building anger rather than a sense of defeat... increasingly aimed at the media coverage. I don't think it's just me being optimistic anymore... I think there might actually be a sea-change occurring.

Mark.

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Mark. on December 10, 2010

Guardian: Police tactics at tuition fees protest questioned after further angry clashes

Then as night fell they were shepherded on to Westminster Bridge. Zoe Walsh, 22, a student at Warwick University, said: "We were kettled on the bridge from 9.30 until 11pm. They said they would let us out over the bridge, but then kettled us in on both ends. It was really, really tight, absolutely freezing, there was no space, basically.

"Everyone waited quietly. They wouldn't give us any information on when we'd get off – one policeman said, 'I'm not allowed to tell you anything' when I asked how long it'd be."

Gabriel Lukes, 14, left Dunraven school in south London on his own to join in the march. He was kettled in Parliament Square before being moved to Westminster Bridge just after 9pm. He stood alone for two hours before being allowed off at 11pm. His father Peter was waiting for him. "It was cold, cramped, you had like half a metre to yourself," he said. "It was just terrible."

Bernard Goyder, 19, a history student at Soas, said: "We were penned in on both sides of the bridge by police in full riot gear. I would estimate there were at least 200 on either side, kettling a crowd of well over a thousand. They finally let us out at about 11.10pm, but we had to walk out in single file past a line of police – I think they were looking to identify people they'd spotted earlier and grab them.

"The conditions on the bridge were atrocious. There were no toilet facilities, and we were held there for two hours with about as much space as in a crowded lift.

"I think it's a form of collective punishment by the police. I overheard one say it served us right for the trouble we'd caused earlier.

"I think people are still being kettled at Trafalgar Square. This is a travesty of democracy."

Submitted by Jenre on December 10, 2010

Tommy Ascaso

Someone on the guardian live blog is claiming the demo was attacked by fascists, anyone know anything about it?

i saw this from one protester on twitter:
"About 20 chanting #edl etc outside kettle by Wminster Abbey/QEII centre. Now telling a "student slag","fuck off to your own country"
and...
"Chant "I'd rather be a Tory than a student" #edl class traitors #day3x"

Mark.

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Mark. on December 10, 2010

...that quote from the guardian live blog

I just got home after attending the embers of the protest at the end of Victoria Street. While there I got chatting to a 17year-old girl. A while later a group of people who I believe to be neo-Nazis turned up and started causing trouble. They were trying to start on an old man of about 60. A policeman calmed him down. They then started picking on this girl. They all started to scream "Cunt!" at her and she called them this back. The group (about 12-15) walked up to her in a very menacing way. We backed off towards the police and then one of the group pushed the girl violently in the head, causing her to fall down on her back. I pulled her away to the police and asked for help. Two of them smirked at each other and one said: "You wanted free speech." They then continued to watch as the neo-Nazis caused trouble. This occurred at around 7pm.

Mark.

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Mark. on December 10, 2010

Demo against Cameron in Leeds?

http://twitter.com/GdnLeeds

PM Cameron arrives in Harehills, Leeds to hot reception from waiting protesters. Boos and chants of 'scum scum scum' from anti-cuts crowd
14 minutes ago via HootSuite

http://twitter.com/search?q=%23studentcutsharehills

Incubus

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Incubus on December 10, 2010

Seeing the youth who described himself and his mates as 'scum from the ghetto' was most impressive, that and the postcode tags left on the Treasury (N.16, N.14 and W.6) -offering a wider prospect of working class revolt, especially how the postcode divisions are the basis of a territorial fragmentation...It was a joy to hear "Off with their heads" as the crowd laid into Charlie and Camilla's hearse...

One thing that did the rounds on Twitter which surely added to the rage on the streets was the guy being pulled from his wheel chair (and beaten according to some tweets at the time)-

http://www.rstewart.org/2010/12/10/disabled-journalist-pulled-from-wheelchair-by-riot-police/

Incubus

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Incubus on December 10, 2010

NCAFAC had a press conference this morning as broadcast on Fox, sorry, Sky, saying that the movement was going to continue and refused to condemn any violence by the protesters (press gave them the most aggressive third degree questioning I've ever seen), but roundly slated the old bill. They mentioned the up-coming demo's and urged people to come to the London Student Assembly on Sunday, and for students to form their own assemblies nationwide with the aim of having a 'national one' next year, and then extending it across Europe (!) They also called on the NUS to support the student movement and for the TUC to call a General Strike..

-Gave a pretty good account of themselves, and didn't really claim to be speaking on behalf of the movement...Not sure just what each individuals politics are, but two were dissident members of the NUS NEC..doubtless there are trots in the mix tho'...

Incubus

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Incubus on December 10, 2010

Oops, sorry it was actually the ULU lot!

Submitted by Caiman del Barrio on December 10, 2010

Incubus

One thing that did the rounds on Twitter which surely added to the rage on the streets was the guy being pulled from his wheel chair (and beaten according to some tweets at the time)-

http://www.rstewart.org/2010/12/10/disabled-journalist-pulled-from-wheelchair-by-riot-police/

If it's the same guy, he was positioned remonstrating with riot cops by Westminster Abbey right before the first horse charge. We could see the mounteds preparing for about 2 mins behind police lines and we were screaming at the cops to not charge a guy in a wheelchair...

I think people are right to read quite a lot into this. I have never seen so many people quite so prepared to confront the cops and in such a decentralised, spontaneous fashion. I think it's worth noting that even the NCAFC (?) stewards couldn't persuade the demo to stay away from Parliament Square. Porter can bleat all he likes on the telly, but he's an irrelevance. A lot of students claim that we need to beseech him to support "us", but it really doesn't matter. His role in proceedings has now become a cameo.

I've always been pretty sceptical about the possibilities behind violent protest, but the last four student demos have quite clearly upped the ante on a national level and we're now talking about things which seemed absolutely inconceivable just a month ago, all because of a couple of smashed windows at Millbank.

jef costello

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by jef costello on December 10, 2010

Great video Ed, good to see that copper pulled from the horse and getting a kicking.
I think there must have been two kettles on Westminster Bridge then, I did wonder how they got us down to such small numbers so quickly, but I couldn't see a second group, just miles of police.
It was good to see a lot of people resisting shit from the police.

It's also amusing when they bich about people coming for trouble, they had masked riot cops up from the early hours of the morning.

Incidentally, I didn't get a picture but on one of the lines they had telescopic batons drawn, aren't those banned in crowd situations because they're even more dangerous than the ones they are allowed to attack people with.

Incubus

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Incubus on December 10, 2010

Absolutely Caimen. Even the NUS/TUC 'vigil' fell apart with students and others bursting through the lines of private security (A company called SFM) so that they could march up to Parliament Sq. just two minutes round the corner...

Incubus

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Incubus on December 10, 2010

Yes, riotcops from the start, but the march as a whole was stopped in it's tracks, which is why people split off in the first place...

jef costello

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by jef costello on December 10, 2010

It took the police ages to get open a treasury window to try to use the infrared camera (they used a hammmer in the end) it was got with a laser pen but I've no idea if that will damage it or just spoil a few pictures.

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 10, 2010

I can't believe it's almost a month since Millbank...

Also: 'We are from the slums of London...', I never thought I'd hear anything like that at a British protest.

Caiman del Barrio

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Caiman del Barrio on December 10, 2010

Oh yeah, another consequence of yesterday is that Democracy Village is no more, lol.

Incubus

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Incubus on December 10, 2010

I thought it was no longer legal to twat people on the head with a baton generally, without good justification, since the 70's, even during a riot...Maybe those who got randomly brained could use this to their advantage, but I know that since the state claims a monopoly of violence and that the old bill can pretty well get away with anything...an aquaintance of mine, (friend of a friend) goes out with a gay WPC, who claims that the cop that killed Ian Tomlinson, 'slipped'!!! Talk about lame self-delusion....

Incubus

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Incubus on December 10, 2010

Apparently the treasury windows had to be nailed shut from the inside by Govt. security...hahaha, and to think with all those al quaida operatives around, natioanl security comes down to a claw hammer and a bag of six inch nails...anybody else spot a certain Mr.B on the frontline dressed to the nines? (You know who I mean, no names mentioned etc.) Bless him, the old fucker!!

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 10, 2010

http://donnachadelong.info/2010/12/10/off-your-knees-comrades/

An NUJ journalist blogpost: 'A message to my fellow trade Unionists. Off your knees, comrades'.

First outright call to action I've seen from anyone inside the Trade Union movement.

Steven.

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Steven. on December 10, 2010

he is an anarchist type, a syndicalist anyway. He has posted on libcom before under his real name.

Trade union people have been talking it big and militant for quite a while now though in general, especially people like Bob Crow, Matt Wrack, etc

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 10, 2010

Rumour has appeared on Twitter saying the Rad Cam in Oxford is surrounded by police again 'they won't say what's going on'.

Any one heard anything about this?

Submitted by Stranger Than … on December 10, 2010

Incubus

NCAFAC had a press conference this morning as broadcast on Fox, sorry, Sky, saying that the movement was going to continue and refused to condemn any violence by the protesters (press gave them the most aggressive third degree questioning I've ever seen), but roundly slated the old bill. They mentioned the up-coming demo's and urged people to come to the London Student Assembly on Sunday, and for students to form their own assemblies nationwide with the aim of having a 'national one' next year, and then extending it across Europe (!) They also called on the NUS to support the student movement and for the TUC to call a General Strike..

-Gave a pretty good account of themselves, and didn't really claim to be speaking on behalf of the movement...Not sure just what each individuals politics are, but two were dissident members of the NUS NEC..doubtless there are trots in the mix tho'...

I saw that too most of them are trots mainly SWP and EAN. It would be good if they actually came out in SUPPORT of the methods of protests yesterday rather than fail to condemn them.

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 10, 2010

UCL have apparently ended their occupation peacefully 'in faith that the management will not impose any costs upon us'.

I hope they find somewhere else to regroup. Of all the occupations they seemed to be one of the best organised and the biggest inspiration to other occupations.

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 10, 2010

From the Guardian livefeed:

3.50pm: My colleague Patrick Kingsley has just come down to tell me there is a meeting for student activists at the Hong Kong Lecture Hall in the Clement Building at the London School of Economics at 6pm tonight. The meeting will plan a day of "national assembly" for student protesters to take place next month.

Anyone know anything about this? Who is organising it?

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 10, 2010

Don Foster's constituency office in Bath has just had a brick put through it's window, according to the Guardian liveblogger.

In the words of the specials: 'People getting angry'.

Jenre

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Jenre on December 10, 2010

http://inapcache.boston.com/universal/site_graphics/blogs/bigpicture/londonprotest_12_10/l38_26275325.jpg

"Forensic police carry out investigations in Parliament Square in London, Friday, Dec. 10, 2010"

forensics?

Ellar

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Ellar on December 10, 2010

Has another day ofaction or demo been organised? I've heard a few things here and there but nothing cocncrete yet. If it hasn't been organised then a call out should go out.

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 10, 2010

Oh boy oh boy oh boy....

Live feed of the Exeter debate between Aaron Porter (supposed student leader) and Steve Smith (right wing vice chancellor, money grabber and head of Universities UK. Feed provided by the good people at the Exeter Occupation:

http://www.blogtv.com/people/exeteroccupation

Debate is scheduled for 5.

Submitted by Auto on December 10, 2010

jmacbean

Has another day ofaction or demo been organised? I've heard a few things here and there but nothing cocncrete yet. If it hasn't been organised then a call out should go out.

Nothing solid (people still recovering from yesterday, I think) but messages have been bouncing around the internet tentatively suggesting the 14th (Lords vote on Tuition bill).

Though there are plenty of other days of action planned (Like the 15th of Dec against Benefits). We'll see what get's picked up on in the coming days

Alf

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Alf on December 10, 2010

"Then as night fell they were shepherded on to Westminster Bridge. Zoe Walsh, 22, a student at Warwick University, said: "We were kettled on the bridge from 9.30 until 11pm. They said they would let us out over the bridge, but then kettled us in on both ends. It was really, really tight, absolutely freezing, there was no space, basically" Quote from Guardian cited above.

I was at the Wesminster Bridge end of Parliament Square around 6.30-7.30 with some other comrades. There were only a few people milling about in front of the police line, although within that few we met one young anarchist who knew his Maurice Brinton very well and some Solfed comrades...It was eerily quiet and we couldn't see anything over the rows of vans. We heard there were more people still at the Trafalgar Square end but by the time we got there that was quiet too. Then this morning I read about the kettle on the Bridge and wondered how that had happened. At lunchtime today at my sixthform college we held an open meeting in one of the student canteens and a group of very vocal students came along. One of them had been at the demo earlier on in the day yesterday and had been kettled in the Square, then let out with the promise of going over the bridge, but then kettled again half way across the bridge till 1.30, which entirely confirms the above account. He had also seen a lot of people being clobbered by police; and another one of our more militant students went home with bruises from a cop using a riot shield.
The lunchtime meeting was very good; unlike the previous meeting there were more students than staff. There is a core of students who want to be active, make links across college and with other local colleges and schools. We will meet again next week. They also mentioned a day of protest against the abolition of EMA on Monday but it wasn't clear what they were referring to. There is an NUT circular going round which calls for petitioning your local MP, etc, but that's about it. In any case, I think there may be a hiatus for a while but everyone agreed that this whole struggle is not at all over just because they passed a law in parliament.

jef costello

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by jef costello on December 10, 2010

An officer detains a demonstrator on the edge of Parliament Square

bloody Guardian.

Police officers surround a protester on the edge of Parliament Square

Samotnaf

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Samotnaf on December 10, 2010

There's a complete TV and radio blackout here in France about what's been happening in England over the last 4 weeks, including yesterday. Millbank was mentioned once, a month ago when it happened - but silence since. Is it the same in other countries?

Caiman del Barrio

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Caiman del Barrio on December 10, 2010

WAG member just interviewed on Channel 4 News on The Violence Question.

Stranger Than …

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Stranger Than … on December 10, 2010

WAG just on Channel 4 news.

Still don't understand why someone doesn't say that violence is a legitimate response to these attacks to our class.

rooieravotr

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by rooieravotr on December 10, 2010

My compliments and thanks to all this enlightening coverage!

As to Samotsaf's question on coverage in other copuntries: in the Netherlands the big action days got coverage, yesterday as well. Most of the attention goes to the 'violence' - the protestors' violence, that is; the scandalous police operations barely get mentioned. Today, the attack on Charles' and Camilla's car got quite a lot of attention, in a news item pretending that basically the whole of Britain was deeply, DEEPLY shocked...

By the way: student protests in the Netherlands as well, today for instance: Dutch news article (with a photo series and a video link): http://www.nu.nl/binnenland/2399007/duizenden-studenten-protesteren-in-amsterdam.html. In Nijmegen, anarchist students 'took' the stage to do a speech (otherwise, there was a mayor and auniversity chancellor on the stage...): http://www.indymedia.nl/nl/2010/12/72172.shtml . There is gonna be more: a big rally on 21 january, in The Hague.

Incubus

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Incubus on December 10, 2010

Good point.

Class War incorrigibles will enjoy this one-

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m4PjUoqhouU

Can't help but think that those Herris fences couldn't be better employed against plods feet- lower centre of gravity etc.

Shiny colourful TSG commanders helmets make them terribly vulnerable to individual attention ,no?....

Samotnaf

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Samotnaf on December 10, 2010

Just spoke to a couple of people who said the attack on Charles' and Camilla's Rolls was menioned on the tv news - but it must have been pretty low on the list , as i watched for 10 minutes on 2 channels, plus at midday, and it never got a mention. Plus 2 friends over the phone had only heard about it through me - so not quite a blackout in France, but very low level coverage.

Submitted by bastarx on December 10, 2010

Samotnaf

There's a complete TV and radio blackout here in France about what's been happening in England over the last 4 weeks, including yesterday. Millbank was mentioned once, a month ago when it happened - but silence since. Is it the same in other countries?

It led the evening news on one government station here last night and was second on the other. They both spent more time on Charles and Camilla than anything else. If Australia hadn't so far escaped the worst of the crisis they might be less likely to show resistance to it.

mikail firtinaci

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by mikail firtinaci on December 10, 2010

In turkey there is a total silence even in the so-called democratic-lefty media. Even some stalinists don't even mention what is going on in england. For a person who does not follow anything except the turkish channels, papers, sites, it is as if everything is quite in the western european front of the class battle...

Awesome Dude

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Awesome Dude on December 10, 2010

From the Guardian

Violent thugs? I am a 21-year-old literature student and I am a protester. I danced to music on Parliament Square as people spray painted NO on the grass, I shouted 'tory **** tory ****' with pride, I got pushed to the police front line and charged by horses on two occasions (please see footage of charges on 24th and 9th). I am not ashamed.

If you want to look at thugs then look to to the police.

I am a girl of five foot two, I was pushed several times in the face, dragged on the floor and laughed at by police when I told them I had asthma. This is why people get angry, because people were being trapped and wanted to get out.

All afternoon we were told people were able to leave from various places but this was just not true.

I asked a policeman were I could go to the toilet; he pointed at the floor by his feet.

Another shouted: "Move, bitch, or I'll squash you with my horse."

Eventually, when the protests had died down and people were desperate to go home, a group of around 1,000 protesters were finally escorted to Westminster Bridge to exit; however this was a trick. What then happened was we were held on the bridge for hours in the freezing cold. The crowd remained calm, but after hours of freezing people began to chant "let us out" and then the crowd pushed forwards. Being small I was carried by the crowd and ended up by the police line. I was tired and cold and hadn't eaten for 12 hours or had any water.

I screamed at the police not to hurt me because I was being pushed but they still went for my face, almost pulling me to the floor. A man to my right put his arms over my face, screaming, "Leave her alone, she's a girl, she's not harming you," but the police began to hit him several times on the head.

When we were finally let off the bridge it was one at a time through huge crowds of jeering officers. We were told we were being photographed in case we had damaged royal car. But how this could have happened whilst we were kettled in parliament i don't know.

What I will say is that by this stage the anarchists had fought their way out, and just lots of women and children were left to freeze.

If it's true anarchists (I'm assuming mostly male) fought their way out and left others to freeze, it paints a sad picture for us. Especially as we are most experienced with police tactics and know whats it's like being lock in those pens.

rodeo jones

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by rodeo jones on December 10, 2010

there's no mention of this here in the US whatsoever, with the exception of the attack on the prince's car. this gets me really excited though. if britain has this kind of potential, it makes me less pessimistic about the united states

Submitted by Awesome Dude on December 10, 2010

Auto

So... what now?

It's gonna be a long wait until the trade unions do their A to B's around parliament in march/april. We're going to have to defend the 'legitimacy' of direct action in the face of an extremely hostile media. We need to keep the spirit going until then. We already have a network of sorts (autonomous students network) that, IMO, we are going to have rely on to intervein in the struggles on campus and inside networks like NCAFAC against the Trots and their superior organisation. But ASN needs to be more fully substantiated and their are several proposals afoot to rebuilt local university 'anarchist' groups.

Submitted by dinosavros on December 10, 2010

rooieravotr

As to Samotsaf's question on coverage in other copuntries: in the Netherlands the big action days got coverage, yesterday as well. Most of the attention goes to the 'violence' - the protestors' violence, that is; the scandalous police operations barely get mentioned. Today, the attack on Charles' and Camilla's car got quite a lot of attention,

Exactly the same for Greek media

Sidney Huffman

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Sidney Huffman on December 10, 2010

what is absolutely boiling my piss is the complete lack of action by the unions (i know there have been isolated incidents from individuals and I saw the rmt banner on the news).

Speaking as an old fart I'm GUTTED that the unions have still not done anything to support the youth and i think they should be out there with them now not in march or april. Does anyone know how a campaign could be started to pressurise the unions to get into fucking gear now? i haven't got a clue how you'd do something like that but if anyone has any ideas i'll give it a go.

These kids are out there getting fucking battered by the cops and even attacked by fascist thugs siding with the police? for fuck's sake the wider society should be there following the kids' lead and standing with them.

Baderneiro Miseravel

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Baderneiro Miseravel on December 10, 2010

The media in Brasil mostly noted the attack on Prince Charles and that there were "violent student protests due to raise in university fees". At least people know it's going on because of that, though.

Steven.

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Steven. on December 11, 2010

Black rainbow - you can't take what that person in the Guardian says about "anarchists" fighting their way out of the kettle. That person probably took the media definition of "anarchists" as being people in masks. Most of the people in masks fighting the police and destroying property were kids.

Regardless, you can't criticise people for fighting their way out of a kettle, just because not everyone managed to get out!

krink, I don't think you should expect much from "the unions" supporting this. The lecturers union, UCU, has supported these demonstrations. But elsewhere the unions have been happy to leave struggles separate. The NUJ at the BBC, the firefighters and RMT have all fought alone. Unison is doing its best to do nothing at all, and leave everything down to individual local branches.

I think that public sector pensions will be the biggest issue for public sector workers, which could lead to some sort of joint action. But I think the government will try to hope this student stuff dies out before it comes after our pensions. And the unions will probably be okay with this (not just through evil motivations, but also because people are scared for their jobs, so they are not going to just walk out on wildcat strikes in support of other people's issues, when most are too scared and demoralised to even strike for themselves).

Submitted by Awesome Dude on December 11, 2010

krink

Speaking as an old fart I'm GUTTED that the unions have still not done anything to support the youth and i think they should be out there with them now not in march or april. Does anyone know how a campaign could be started to pressurise the unions to get into fucking gear now? i haven't got a clue how you'd do something like that but if anyone has any ideas i'll give it a go.

In a way that's the biggest challenge we face. How to dislodge the trade union aristocracies grip over 'organised' workers. If we do, it might take the workers movement in a refeshing new direction. An interesting observation is how the NUS leadership (embodied in Aaron Porter) have temporarily lost control of the direction in which the radicalised elements in the student movement choose to demonstrate. It could be that a considerable section of a pissed off rank and file union membership turn to militant tactics and in the face of condemnation and crackdowns from the leadership break away from the leadership and manage to take working class opinion with them...things could get very exciting next year.

Quaramorph

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Quaramorph on December 11, 2010

Just got this message from someone, don't really know how to respond:

"Getting accidentally caught up in it all (whoops), I was really terrified - of the students, not the police. If the police had to resort to heavy handed tactics, it's a shame that the minority of peaceful protesters had to be subjected to it. But from what I could see, most of the people there seemed quite keen to cause a riot with very little regard for innocent bystanders."

Submitted by Awesome Dude on December 11, 2010

Quaramorph

Just got this message from someone, don't really know how to respond:

"Getting accidentally caught up in it all (whoops), I was really terrified - of the students, not the police. If the police had to resort to heavy handed tactics, it's a shame that the minority of peaceful protesters had to be subjected to it. But from what I could see, most of the people there seemed quite keen to cause a riot with very little regard for innocent bystanders."

Judging from the last few demos this one was likely to end up in some sort of violence. What did she/he expect?...this is not a riot?

rooieravotr

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by rooieravotr on December 11, 2010

blackrainbow

Quaramorph

Just got this message from someone, don't really know how to respond:

"Getting accidentally caught up in it all (whoops), I was really terrified - of the students, not the police. If the police had to resort to heavy handed tactics, it's a shame that the minority of peaceful protesters had to be subjected to it. But from what I could see, most of the people there seemed quite keen to cause a riot with very little regard for innocent bystanders."

Judging from the last few demos this one was likely to end up in some sort of violence. What did she/he expect?...this is not a riot?

The strength of what seems to be happening is thast all kind of totally new people begin moving. They often do NOT know what to expect. I don't mean to say that experienced demonstrators are somehow 'to blame'. But I remember the day I caught my first whiff of tear gas. I was on my own, and felt a little bit like the person of the quoted message. Yes, I grew over that: )Experience, but also co-demonstreators taking care of each other - and friendly explanation and support afterwards if things go wrong, do help. The attitude 'what did he/ she expect' is, while logical, not sufficient. We all had a 'first time'...

Submitted by Steven. on December 11, 2010

Quaramorph

Just got this message from someone, don't really know how to respond:

"Getting accidentally caught up in it all (whoops), I was really terrified - of the students, not the police. If the police had to resort to heavy handed tactics, it's a shame that the minority of peaceful protesters had to be subjected to it. But from what I could see, most of the people there seemed quite keen to cause a riot with very little regard for innocent bystanders."

Firstly I would respond by saying that if people are kettled in freezing temperatures for hours, they are going to get angry.

Secondly, if people really had no regard for innocent bystanders, I would ask how many demonstrators were hospitalised by police? (49 at last count I believe) and how many innocent bystanders by demonstrators? (Zero, nor any reports of any even being hurt in the slightest)

Caiman del Barrio

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by Awesome Dude

Submitted by Caiman del Barrio on December 11, 2010

blackrainbow

If it's true anarchists (I'm assuming mostly male) fought their way out and left others to freeze, it paints a sad picture for us. Especially as we are most experienced with police tactics and know whats it's like being lock in those pens.

Nice assumptions - I'm gonna guess you weren't there. I also question the logic of us hanging around to offer Kettle Solution Consultancy to the ignorant plebs. On a further point, I'd like to highlight that the anarchist movement spent 10 years struggling against kettles, only for the students to crack them in 3 weeks. Moreover, I'd estimate that I saw maybe 7-8,000 people masked up in the kettle, most of whom having no tangible link to the anarchist inertia.

I got out around 3.30pm cos I have a worsening leg injury from a previous demo.

Mike Harman

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Mike Harman on December 11, 2010

Is it me or is this demo the first time that the media have started noticing that most of the militancy is from working class kids rather than anarchists (or even 'anarchists') - there's Paul Mason's "banlieue" article, then "feral youth" everywhere else, and then Cameron's comments that "There were quite a number of people who clearly were there wanting to pursue violence and destroy property,"". I'm not really sure where that's going though, obviously nowhere good.

Mike Harman

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Mike Harman on December 11, 2010

Just seen this - http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2010/12/470057.html - Network X gathering, 15th/16th January.

Mike Harman

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Mike Harman on December 11, 2010

Video from Glasgow. (edit, no link and I can't find it now, will put it back in later if I see it again, sorry).

Incubus

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Incubus on December 11, 2010

Speaking as an old fart I'm GUTTED that the unions have still not done anything to support the youth and i think they should be out there with them now not in march or april. Does anyone know how a campaign could be started to pressurise the unions to get into fucking gear now? i haven't got a clue how you'd do something like that but if anyone has any ideas i'll give it a go.

I was under the impression that both the NCAFC and Coaltion of Resistance had tried to put pressure on the TUC, one of them had a demo outside the parasitical scabs HQ too....

Incubus

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Incubus on December 11, 2010

AARON PORTER IS THE SON OF A COP!- Ha-ha.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aaron_Porter

Incubus

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Incubus on December 11, 2010

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 11, 2010

http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=179218858770566

NCAFC is calling a protest on the 20th of December.

A bit too close to Christmas?

Mark.

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Mark. on December 11, 2010

From a Guardian profile of Aaron Porter back in June:

Smart suit, shiny shoes … meet the new NUS president leading the battle against fees

Aaron Porter, 25, has just moved back in with his parents in Norbury, south London, after graduating in English literature from the University of Leicester. Not quite the profile you might expect of a man who, as the new president of the National Union of Students, is about to lead one of the fiercest political battles in a generation.

[…]

Porter might be living with his parents – a policeman who grew up in London and a teacher from Trinidad – but by day his job is as high-powered as they come. Dressed in a smart dark suit, striped shirt, red tie and shiny black shoes, he is due to go from this interview with the Observer to a one-on-one meeting with Lord Browne.

[…]

Porter remembers 2004, when he was 19 and the decision was being taken to increase fees from their original level of £1,000 a year. At that time the NUS stuck to a position opposing all tuition fees, calling instead for the reinstatement of grants.

But, he argues, the argument had already been lost and the time had come to move on. "There came a point when the debate was no longer 'should there be fees or not?', but 'how do we fund higher education?' Rather than sitting at the table, we were standing outside shouting. We weren't taken seriously: we were left out in the cold."

It was his predecessor, Wes Streeting, who fought to change the NUS from the inside, dropping its opposition to contributions from students. Instead, the organisation came up with an alternative – a graduate tax, which would see students face a slightly increased rate of income tax over their careers. It was a fight to get the union to accept it and now Porter is determined to maintain the policy. "There are some that think we should stick to the principled position of free education. But if vice-chancellors expect us to stand on the outside waving placards they are sorely mistaken."

[…]

As for the Conservatives, he talks of a "constructive" relationship with Willetts in opposition. "He surprised us, a Tory minister, and I hope we surprised him as a national union."

Indeed, the politician has been full of praise for the NUS. When in opposition Willetts said the transformation of the union and its new way of fighting was "the most powerful single way of making sure that politicians listen".

[...]

Ed

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Ed on December 11, 2010

What an utter ballbag.. :roll:

Incubus

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Incubus on December 11, 2010

Indeed, the politician has been full of praise for the NUS.

...Indeed, the guy is such a dweeb, reminds me of Will in the 'Inbetweeners', shiny black shoes and all...

Talking of coppers, check out this pigblog to see what the thugs in blue thought of the Glorious 9th-

http://inspectorgadget.wordpress.com/2010/12/11/simon-hardy-student-violence-was-self-defence/#comments

Incubus

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Incubus on December 11, 2010

http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=179218858770566

NCAFC is calling a protest on the 20th of December.

A bit too close to Christmas?

Not too sure about this, it appears to be just one guy on Facebook, withno orgs backing him/it...but then again, that might be a good thing-

The Times today was quoting the Met as wanting to carry out pre-emptive arrests, and to use water-cannon next time round...Thought the Met had always frowned on the water-cannon option, but in terms of a graduated violent state response, they don't want to skip to baton rounds and CS/CN...

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 11, 2010

You're right... nothing on the NCAFC website. But the strange thing about the situation we're in is that I feel *any* callout could go viral and actually take place - even if it's just started by the one guy.

I think we're dealing with some social forces that haven't been come to the fore in this country for a long time...

Submitted by Wellclose Square on December 11, 2010

Auto

http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=179218858770566

NCAFC is calling a protest on the 20th of December.

A bit too close to Christmas?

See one of the posters on that page is calling for a blockade of oil refineries and citing the militancy of the miners.

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 11, 2010

Okay, I'm now officially fucking enraged...

Alfie Meadows was almost turned away from Chelsea and Westminster hospital because a decision had been taken to 'only treat injured police officers'.

Thank fuck for the integrity of the ambulance driver. Otherwise we would have been talking about a death.

Ed

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Ed on December 12, 2010

Glasgow students having it out with police:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YvyfxghZLK0

Inigo Montoya

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Inigo Montoya on December 12, 2010

Looking to get in contact with any anarchists involved in NCAFAC or in the student struggle in general.

Please drop me a PM cheers.

Incubus

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Incubus on December 12, 2010

Dunno if this was posted already, but government/police are getting seriously fucking jittery:

"Anti-Terrorist police sent to quiz 12-year-old boy over planned protest outside Cameron's office".

There was also mention in the press about coaches of students being stopped on the way into London for the the demo, also 'riot cops inside Parliament'...plus some stuff on there being more than the usual contingent of armed cops within Parliament grounds (this is possible of-course, which indicates jitters, but could also be propaganda)

...And while the Met publically said they could handle the demo on their own, without outside forces providing 'mutual aid' (Kropotkin spins in his grave...), if you look at the link to that coppers blog I posted earlier, one of them plainly states that the riot cops pictured were from Suffolk...I should think that the event provided some realtime experience for PSU's from outside London to prepare them for the struggles to come...

flaneur

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by flaneur on December 12, 2010

"Home Secretary Theresa May has confirmed there was "contact" between the Duchess of Cornwall and one of the protesters who attacked her car.

But she did not confirm reports the duchess was poked with a stick during student protests on Thursday
."

Ho ho.

Submitted by Sidney Huffman on December 12, 2010

blackrainbow

krink

Speaking as an old fart I'm GUTTED that the unions have still not done anything to support the youth and i think they should be out there with them now not in march or april.

It could be that a considerable section of a pissed off rank and file union membership turn to militant tactics and in the face of condemnation and crackdowns from the leadership break away from the leadership and manage to take working class opinion with them...things could get very exciting next year.

That is something worth working towards rather than 'wait five years and vote labour' which is basically what Unison/Labour councillors said at a PSA meeting I went to. It sounds impossible but who imagined the students going the way they have lately?

Submitted by Wellclose Square on December 12, 2010

Incubus

http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=179218858770566

NCAFC is calling a protest on the 20th of December.

A bit too close to Christmas?

Not too sure about this, it appears to be just one guy on Facebook, withno orgs backing him/it...but then again, that might be a good thing-

I've been periodically looking at this page - a hell of a lot of trolling, both from the usual right-wing suspects and, most significantly, from NCAFC associates (Vicki Morris and someone calling himself Luther Blissett, in particular - who should not in any way be confused with the various post-situ incarnations: he's some kind of proprietorial trot who has Ho Chi Minh as his avatar), the latter implying that it's a state set-up. I don't think it is. If anything, I think it's probably the more 'uncontrollable' elements among school and college-kids who have thought it up and - perhaps unwisely - 'borrowed' the NCAFC logo to lend the event the aura of 'legitimacy' and hence a bit more 'oomph'. I think the 'uncontrollables' - if I may be permitted to borrow the term - are keen to keep the momentum going 'by any means necessary'. It's richly ironic that Luther Blissett bangs on about 'legitimacy', 'organisation', and 'authorisation', in view of the history of the multiple name phenomenon as a means to subvert these shibboleths.

Posters on that page, sympathetic to the 20th December call-out, have in turn accused the NCAFC of being bureaucratic and have averred that the movement is 'autonomous' and 'self-sustaining' and doesn't need to be legitimised by the unions and the NCAFC - even if these groups oppose it, they'll go ahead anyway, as one poster put it. One of the NCAFC-types said the meeting place - Piccadilly Circus at 12pm - would unfairly disrupt tourists (going about their legitimate consumption?), asking why the City of London couldn't be targetted instead - so watch out for a future NCAFC-approved 'Stop the City'...

Also, there's a link there to a facebook page dedicated to a 'Loot £9000 worth of stuff in Tottenham Court Road' set for December 23rd at 5pm, under the by-line 'hit them where it hurts - MONEY, MONEY, MONEY!' I doubt if the NCAFC is giving that clearance somehow. A belated 'revenge of the rookeries' in the making... or not?

mons

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by mons on December 12, 2010

Yeah they way NCAFC are behaving in response to protests not organised by them is revealing, good that others are pissed off at their attempts to control things..

NCAFC or not, we dont need anyone's permission to protest.

sums up the way me and others are feeling I think.

But to be fair the accusations they're not militant aren't fair, they refused to condemn any of the protesters' violence, even the attack on the royal family car, etc.

Mike Harman

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Mike Harman on December 13, 2010

Copying Jef's account from another thread -

Jef Costello

Anyone else go?
Took us a while to find it, ended up meeting some groups near trafalgar square, the official march route seemed pretty empty apart from cops, but we were late. A group of people moved around in Westminster that gradually got split up. At one point a group of 50-150 gathered outside the department for business in Victoria street where there were only a few police and a large stockpile of riot equipment.
We dodged the small kettle but watched 30-odd people escorted by riot police to the kettle in Parliament Square. When we went in to parliament square the atmosphere was pretty good, there had been some metal fencing up that had been torn down. Some groups used the fences and pastic sheeting to make toilets.
The kettle seemed to close for good at 4.30-5. From then on police at each entrance told people that the other entrances were open, although some people must have been let out because numbers did go down a bit. There was some fighting but I didn't see any.
The crowd was getting a bit angry but mostly there was a lot of chanting and singing.
There were some scuffles by Pall Mall. After the vote and as people began to get more and more angry with being kettled people began to crowd at some of the police lines.
Some fences were passed along the top of the crowd, at first they were thrown at the police but that didn't work too well do afterwards the fences were put up to block the police.The police sent a small group through at one point, not sure why, if it was a snarch squad they didn't get anybody.
Then someone started smashin a treasury window, took a long time because it was reinforced glass and there was a panel behind it.
After the windows smashing has spread a bit further along and they'd watched for a while the police attacked and claimed a section of the front of the building, so the crowd smashed the windows further along. The crowd was constantly chanting, with "whose streets? Our Streets" a favourite. When the cops had been pushed back along the front of the treasury after a charge it was good to hear a thousand people shouting "our streets"
The crowd moved along and more windows were hit as well as the doors, there were massive cheers as the doors gave in although the police managed to push the crowd back out. The were cheers and shouts of encouragement as people hit the windows, waved captured police equipment and threw rocks at the police. The crowd chanted "give us our money back" and after a ladder used to batter the door had been grabbed by the cops we demanded that back.
The police were gradually pushing forward along the front of the building and while the crowd was focussed on the doors were preparing a large group to sweep across into the side of us. It ended up with a line of police in front of the treasury.
By this point the chant "No Justice, No Peace, Fuck the Police" had started up.
(During this time might have been when more people were released)
The police then held us kettled for another hour or two, gradually pushing up from victoria street.
About 9pm they opened up the road towards westminster bridge and announced that it was open. The crowd moved along, singing 'we'll be back' and the police line backed off. A few of us wondered if they'd kettle us on the bridge (I later was told by a comrade that he'd overheard police ordering precisely that) but mostly we were please to be moving again. When the police closed in behind us a lot of us thought they'd use a moving kettle to get us to a station, instead as numbers were approaching even (by this point there were maybe 500-1000 people) they kettled us on the bridge until 11:30.
The route to Waterloo was lined with quite a few police and they were making people uncover their faces and had film cameras set up.

All in all a decent demo.

When the police charge there need to be some cool heads because a lot of times the crowd would panic and run. Obviously no one wants to be hit, but people thirty feet away were running full pelt and that's a recipe for disaster. A few people would walk backwards away from the charges calling out 'Don't run, stay calm' and we could have done with a few more at times. I didn't see anybody fall but it was a danger, plus running from police charges only encourages them.

Best chant of the day
"Unemployment and inflation are not caused by education,
bullshit come off it, the enemy is profit" (small group with red and black flag, lost them.

Most popular
"Whose streets, Our Streets"

others songs and chants
No Justice, No peace, fuck the police
Less Kettle more tea
There are many many more of us than you (sadly stopped being true)
Shame on you
Your job's next
They say cutback we say fightback
Solidarity forever
If you think this is illegal clap your hands

Mike Harman

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by Wellclose Square

Submitted by Mike Harman on December 13, 2010

Wellclose Square

I've been periodically looking at this page - a hell of a lot of trolling, both from the usual right-wing suspects and, most significantly, from NCAFC associates (Vicki Morris and someone calling himself Luther Blissett, in particular - who should not in any way be confused with the various post-situ incarnations: he's some kind of proprietorial trot who has Ho Chi Minh as his avatar), the latter implying that it's a state set-up. I don't think it is. If anything, I think it's probably the more 'uncontrollable' elements among school and college-kids who have thought it up and - perhaps unwisely - 'borrowed' the NCAFC logo to lend the event the aura of 'legitimacy' and hence a bit more 'oomph'. I think the 'uncontrollables' - if I may be permitted to borrow the term - are keen to keep the momentum going 'by any means necessary'. It's richly ironic that Luther Blissett bangs on about 'legitimacy', 'organisation', and 'authorisation', in view of the history of the multiple name phenomenon as a means to subvert these shibboleths.

Latest comments on there are suspecting it's an EDL thing, given the group that called it is named "UK People's Initiative" that doesn't seem at all impossible.

Incubus

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Incubus on December 13, 2010

Call on facebook for 'March of Resistance to Education Cuts, London 20 December 2010'

http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=179218858770566

No idea who, if anyone, is backing this

ALERT! Seems this is a false flag demo! Check FB page for comments!

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 13, 2010

I've not had any internet for a while and so haven't been up to date with developments.

What's going on?

Mike Harman

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Mike Harman on December 13, 2010

UCL Occupation ended on Friday, no eviction - they left with some kind of indication from management that they wouldn't be pursued for 'costs'.

Hull uni went into occupation a few hours ago. First one I'm aware of to go into occupation /since/ the fees vote.

These two videos were put up about the police attack on Jody McIntyre - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rQV9P61FUwg and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rQV9P61FUwg

Theresa May is in the middle of talking complete shit to parliament.

EMA protests today but so far no coverage that I've seen. Oh except for David Miliband having a morning photo-op with the NUS #SaveEMA bloke.

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 13, 2010

When's the next day of action? I saw one advertised for the 20th, but apparently that's thought to be false flag?

I do think the NCAFC one (29th Jan) is very, very late.

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 13, 2010

Someone's saying on Twitter that a police snatch squad have arrested two people at a 'Save EMA demo'. Didn't mention where the demo was...

Submitted by Wellclose Square on December 13, 2010

Mike Harman

Wellclose Square

I've been periodically looking at this page - a hell of a lot of trolling, both from the usual right-wing suspects and, most significantly, from NCAFC associates (Vicki Morris and someone calling himself Luther Blissett, in particular - who should not in any way be confused with the various post-situ incarnations: he's some kind of proprietorial trot who has Ho Chi Minh as his avatar), the latter implying that it's a state set-up. I don't think it is. If anything, I think it's probably the more 'uncontrollable' elements among school and college-kids who have thought it up and - perhaps unwisely - 'borrowed' the NCAFC logo to lend the event the aura of 'legitimacy' and hence a bit more 'oomph'. I think the 'uncontrollables' - if I may be permitted to borrow the term - are keen to keep the momentum going 'by any means necessary'. It's richly ironic that Luther Blissett bangs on about 'legitimacy', 'organisation', and 'authorisation', in view of the history of the multiple name phenomenon as a means to subvert these shibboleths.

Latest comments on there are suspecting it's an EDL thing, given the group that called it is named "UK People's Initiative" that doesn't seem at all impossible.

Agree, this is looking very fishy indeed...

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 13, 2010

Okay, what's the real deal behind the callout on the 20th? Is there any basis for thinking it's been called by the EDL?

Facts need to be straightened out...

Mark.

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Mark. on December 13, 2010

Account by a Spanish(?) student at Goldsmiths, taken from Uniriot

Parliament Square, London, 9th december 2010. Yesterday, on December 9, I went with a group of PhD students and professors from Goldsmiths College, University of London, to the organized protest against education cuts and an increase of some 300% in university taxes that have been proposed by the British government. It was a cold, sunny day. It was 12:30pm when we began to walk from Trafalgar Square to Parliament Square. The police had cut off access to various streets, so we had to take a roundabout path to get there. Once we got there we were singing, walking along, talking with strangers, sharing impressions, reading placards (‘Even Sadam Hussein believes in free education’, ‘No ifs no buts no education cuts’, ‘The Libcons have put the N in the CU*TS’…).

After an hour we decided to go drink a tea, coffee, or beer in some nearby pub. When we tried to leave we realized that the police had blocked all the exits to the square. There were cordons of riot police that had initially let people in, but not leave. By this method thousands of people were confined in the square (a police tactic that here is called a ‘kettle’). We asked the police very politely if there was another street from which we could leave. They would send us from one street to another, saying yes, it was possible, but it always turned out to be a lie. We asked how long this forced imprisonment would last and they would tell us that they didn’t know, ‘a long time’.

Some police were polite, and some terribly aggressive. One friend who was in England on a student visa became very nervous—she began to shake and cry, worried about what might happen. Resigned, we stayed in one corner of the square, observing everything around us: there were people dancing to the sounds of drums or techno music, people running, people confused by the situation. Contradictory information was spreading up and down the place. In one corner we saw a mass of people intent on breaking the police cordon, but without success. We heard the students’ chants. There were many young students, from about 18 years old, from different parts of England: Manchester, Liverpool, Sussex. The cold began to bite, so we began to walk and dance so as not get numb. We received messages of support from ‘outside’ (many friends wanted to join us but at this point the police wouldn’t let them, so they protested in other parts).

It began to get dark. After hours of standing in the cold, I began to feel like a zombie. We began to make bonfires with whatever we could find: leaves, placards. We tore branches off trees, people burned benches, a security gate that began to give off black smoke. We made the bonfires with people we didn’t know, without speaking, without asking each other’s names or where we were from—it was a mechanical, silent, common and anonymous action. As it got darker, the confusion and tension increased. You felt like a caged rat.

There were groups of young people that would attack people on their own, lone journalists, other youths. These kids were not from the protest. People said (and I believe) that they had been introduced by the police to break the protesters. They acted very efficiently, very fast, so that everyone else couldn’t react. They would punch someone who was alone, then run and lose themselves in the multitude. We saw one very young guy bleeding from his face after one of these brief but intense beatings. Another guy with a super swollen, purple eye.

Many of us began to get scared. We got close to some police in what seemed like a quieter zone. We tried repatedly to reason with the police, without success (except that as the hours passed they would talk more, explain themselves more).

Suddenly a group of protesters tried to break into one of the buildings facing the square (the Treasury building). The techno music blasted everywhere. The police allowed this to happen for half an hour, so that it would be filmed nicely, and then began to charge. People began to run towards us, because we were sandwiched between the stampede and the police lines behind us. Many kids began to cry and plead with the police to let us leave, that we were going to be trampled. They refused.

After a period of tension the situation appeared to calm down. We began to sing carols. We asked the police if they thought we should head to another zone in the square. They told us no, that we were better off staying there. Some kids from Manchester reasoned with them, that they had to catch a bus back home. It seemed like they would let them leave if they showed them their bus ticket. Since they had extra tickets, they passed them to us. It looked like we were going to get out, when suddenly they began to charge towards us, hitting us with truncheons. They shouted ‘Move! Move!’ but without specifying where to—but if you moved wherever they didn’t want you to, they’d hit you.

We went as fast as we could towards another part of the square. There the crowd was very compact, you could barely move. At one police line they started to let people leave one by one. People were pushing in that direction and you were getting increasingly squashed. Many people started to have panic attacks; we tried to give them room to breathe. People started to break some windows and there was a police charge that squashed us even more. Luckily, we were pushed closer to the exit. We were like sardines in a can.

The cops at the police cordon started to talk with the protesters as if dialogue was possible. The protesters passed them by. Some of us got to the exit and were searched. The guy in front of me was wearing a scarf around his face because of the cold. The police got very violent with him, telling him not to cover his face, grabbing him by the arms, pointing at him with their fingers. They told him that for doing that he had to go to the back of the line (and they sent him there). We communicated this to everyone, not to cover their faces, and not to worry, that they weren’t taking photos (there was a camera but they weren’t using it).

We passed by more cops on horseback, and waited for our friends from a distance. A police officer came close to us and asked us with typical British politeness, ‘So did you have a nice afternoon?’ I thought of many replies, but we looked at her in silence and she went away smiling. People near the area where we were screamed ‘Let us out!’. After a quarter of an hour we realized that no one else was coming out. We asked and they told us that they had closed this exit, that the next exit was at Westminster Bridge and that we should leave. Our hearts tightened at the thought of leaving our friends behind.

We managed to get ahold of them over the phone. Some were crying desperately, begging us to help them, that it was intolerable. We could hear them shout from where we were: ‘Let us out!’ We could do nothing. In those moments I felt an intense hatred, something I had never felt before—as we moved away I could not bear to look either at the cops nor at the superbourgeoisie shopping in Victoria. This hatred lasted a couple of hours.

Silently, we went to wait in a pub. There we found some other friends that had managed to get out. We embraced intensely, even though we barely knew each other. We got very emotional. We cried. We laughed. We had not eaten since noon. We could not eat, so we drank beer. We called everyone we knew to tell them—we felt a great need to talk. Our professors called us, worried about the others that they could not reach. Many told us that they were writing letters to the BBC because the way they were covering the news was pathetic. Others were writing to the police because of the anti-democratic nature of their prison tactic.

Hours later, the friends that we had left behind told us by phone or text messages that the police began to charge and push them towards Westminster Bridge after we left. Thousands of people were trapped for two hours more, totally stuck. After 9 hours of imprisonment people began to piss themselves. One friend faked fainting in order to get out. For now they haven’t told us much more—they were in a state of shock due to what they saw on that bridge.

From these events, here are some initial reflections:

- the right to protest was destroyed, showing the actual erosion of British democracy itself.

- the police created these situations of imprisonment and constant humiliation in order to provoke violence (and not the other way around).

- everything is perfectly choreographed for the media (today the only thing they talk about is the supposed violence of the protests—some broken windows and the attack on Prince Charles’ motorcade).

I am proud to have been at Parliament Square yesterday. Today many of us still feel numb but strong, with a great desire to think and act.

John1

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by John1 on December 14, 2010

A couple of Aberystwyth University lecture rooms have been occupied as of today. You can see the comrades blog below and their facebook page here

Occupied Aberystwyth University lecture rooms.

I am not involved in the occupation myself. Just passing on info, appologies if this is the wrong place for this.

no1

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by no1 on December 14, 2010

[youtube]tXNJ3MZ-AUo[/youtube]

Presenter: "Did you shout anything provocative? Did you throw anything that would have incited the police to do that to you?"

Jody - "Do you really think a person with cerebral palsy in a ...wheelchair can pose a threat to a police officer who is armed with weapons?"

Presenter: "But you do say you are a revolutionary."

Jody - "But that’s a word, not a physical action!…Do you think I could have, in any way, posed a threat from the seat of my chair to army of police officers armed with weapons?? This whole line of argument is ludicrous because you are blaming the victim of violence for the violence."

Mike Harman

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Mike Harman on December 14, 2010

http://botherer.org/2010/12/14/the-bbc-and-the-police/ is quite good on the coverage on the day, and a really, really weird interview with Jody McIntyre where the reporter accused him of 'rolling towards' police in his wheelchair and throwing stuff.

Submitted by Entdinglichung on December 14, 2010

Mike Harman

http://botherer.org/2010/12/14/the-bbc-and-the-police/ is quite good on the coverage on the day, and a really, really weird interview with Jody McIntyre where the reporter accused him of 'rolling towards' police in his wheelchair and throwing stuff.

reminds me of case in Germany during the 80ies, where the cops tried to counter the accusation that one of them had kicked a demonstrater in the teeth with the argument, that this was justified self-defense against somebody who wanted to damage a cop's boot by biting

Submitted by Wellclose Square on December 14, 2010

Auto

Okay, what's the real deal behind the callout on the 20th? Is there any basis for thinking it's been called by the EDL?

Facts need to be straightened out...

Seems they've disabled the wall because of the 'trolling and spam', but are more than happy to still prominently feature an 'if you recognise any of these scum, report them to the authorities' link, complete with pictures. Crosses my mind that the page could be as much a data-gathering exercise on people 'up for' unofficial protest as an attempt to set up an ambush of protesters, since it's asked people to contact them on the 'people's initiative' email. Sorry to add to the paranoia and not straighten any facts... but didn't a bunch of fascists in Italy in the 1980s once set up a bogus anarchist group so that they could get names and details of anyone wanting to join (no specific references for that, I'm afraid...).

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 14, 2010

Yeah, with the wall disabled it's looking decidedly fucking dodgy. I'm just worried as there seems to be some level support for more grassroots demos outside of the NCAFC framework and so a lot of people are going to be drawn to this 'march of resistance'. I'd hate to see any newly inspired libertarians fall prey to whatever this event is all about...

Submitted by Wellclose Square on December 14, 2010

Auto

Yeah, with the wall disabled it's looking decidedly fucking dodgy. I'm just worried as there seems to be some level support for more grassroots demos outside of the NCAFC framework and so a lot of people are going to be drawn to this 'march of resistance'. I'd hate to see any newly inspired libertarians fall prey to whatever this event is all about...

Someone's giving it the hardsell on Indymedia

http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2010/12/470686.html

The rhetoric rings alarm bells on all sorts of levels, as does the dodgy-looking website that the poster (called Zarathustra(!)) links to. It strikes me that someone is trying to imitate the language of the left and libertarians in a very cack-handed and over-the-top way - a parody, with a dash of Blake (who, for all his brilliance, does have right-wing and nationalist admirers reading their own interpretations).

Malcy

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Malcy on December 14, 2010

Um, from a brief 2-second glance it looks like the work of THE OUTLAW.

Submitted by Incubus on December 14, 2010

Fact is, the admins of this page have rebuffed many, many questions as to who they are exactly (their ID's keep changing)...They have, more recently, being numpties, actually admitted to being EDL sympathisers, and spew out any number of apologist drivel about their org. The reason the wall is disabled is cos some guy from Sussex Uni (a PhD in computing) has set up a code to bombard the fuckers. It wouls appear that the admins themselves are trolling their own page with anti-left, anti-militant stuff...

Now then, there have been reports on the EDL on the demo last week threatening and attacking students, (reported as being 'in-fighting amongst students') and then the EDL report on their own chatroom, as having turned up after the demo to wash off the graffito and piss from the 'Holy' Churchill statue...Then too there is the video posted by WAG of the EDL's Tommy Robinson doing his full-on demagogue act over the student demo ("we're patriots blah..."-plus hilarious pro-police rhetoric!) Here-

http://whitechapelanarchistgroup.wordpress.com/2010/12/13/church-and-king-mob/

It would seem they are trying to gain legitimacy by having that 'anti-Stalinist'/ NFAFC article posted on Indymedia...But then would Indymedia really support an event organised by people who run a 'Spot' em and Shop 'em link?

My view is that this stinks to high fuck- I think it is both an intelligence gathering exercise, and an attempt to lure pretty innocent and naive students into the heart of London to kick the shit out of them as 'Anti-Royal Reds', UAF'ers and unpatriotic copper-bashers....The Police would probably let the EDL have their jollies and cause mayhem within the demo before moving in to kettle the students, and naturally let the EDL disperse. Alternatively, if the EDL make anti-student activity a regular thing, we could see the corralling of protesters, as happens with the UAF/EDL face-offs...Speculating here, I know...

To my mind, this is classical state-backed fascist activity, as the Government knows the limits of using overt repression against such young people in the age of the mobile camera, water cannon might be acceptable in the ritualised riots in Belfast, but are useless for fast moving, wild demos. The Met knows this, and are simply not happy about employing a weapon that wins votes, but is tactically crap (and politically a nightmare for Police Commanders) Kettling is becoming more and more problematic too... Baton rounds? Fat chance.

Dirty tricks are what the Tories have always excelled at- Think of the CW/ Searchlight smears, the fascist infiltration of the Green @ scene in the Nineties...Think of the Basij in Iran, how Ceaucesceu used the miners against mass demonstrations... I'm not drawing direct parallels, but you get my drift? If it stinks, then I'm afraid it's shit.

Jason Cortez

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Jason Cortez on December 14, 2010

My view is that this stinks to high fuck- I think it is both an intelligence gathering exercise, and an attempt to lure pretty innocent and naive students into the heart of London to kick the shit out of them as 'Anti-Royal Reds', UAF'ers and unpatriotic copper-bashers....The Police would probably let the EDL have their jollies and cause mayhem within the demo before moving in to kettle the students, and naturally let the EDL disperse. Alternatively, if the EDL make anti-student activity a regular thing, we could see the corralling of protesters, as happens with the UAF/EDL face-offs...Speculating here, I know...

What intelligence gathering is being done that can't be done from the joining the other events pages? If it is the state they can just request facebook provide the data and facebook will be more than happy to oblige. If it the fash what will they gain? And they seems little chance that they will beat up people in Trafalgar Square, as the police need to be seen to be in control at present. it is more likely that this page was set up by a loon and his mates, a common enough occurrence on facebook.

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 15, 2010

Just heard on Twitter that the BBC have recieved 5,000 complaints about Ben Brown's interview with Jody McIntyre.

Not surprised, really.

Submitted by Entdinglichung on December 15, 2010

Incubus

Call on facebook for 'March of Resistance to Education Cuts, London 20 December 2010'

http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=179218858770566

No idea who, if anyone, is backing this

ALERT! Seems this is a false flag demo! Check FB page for comments!

NCAFC statement: http://anticuts.com/2010/12/15/ncafc-warns-supporters-not-to-attend-2012-march-of-resistance/

Ed

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Ed on December 15, 2010

Sorry if this sounds cliche but that Ben Browne is a complete and utter muppet..

Browne: 'So, uh, were you acting aggressively against the police?'
McIntyre: 'No, I have cerebal palsy, I can't even push my own wheelchair..'

Fuck me, what a dense twat.. :roll:

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 15, 2010

http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2010/12/470784.html

Okay, I think it's pretty certain now that the callout on the 20th is bullshit. A post has just appeared on Indymedia claiming to be from a french student showing solidarity to the British - It then wishes students luck on their next event, proceeding to list the date and location of the 20th callout. Remarkably specific for a solidarity statement, don't you think?

It's clearly an attempt at 'pushing' the date, but an incredibly bad one. There is no actual link to any statement from French students and a link at the bottom claiming to be a French 'song of resistance' actually goes to the facebook event.

Whoever is behind this is spectacularly thick.

EDIT: Aaaaaand it's been deleted. Possibly by an editor, but more likely by the poster when they realised they'd been rumbled.

Something very fucking shifty is going on. I'm no huge fan of the NCAFC (who can be proprietorial with regards to dates on occasion) but I think they've made the right call in warning people to stay away from this one - not because it's 'unofficial' but because the behaviour of whoever's involved (Hardselling the event near-constantly even through fake posts on Indymedia, trying to couch it in the language of Libertarianism, refusing to answer even the most basic questions on who their group is) makes it seem like something people should be very wary about getting involved in.

It just makes me wonder what the deal is.

Incubus

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Incubus on December 15, 2010

refusing to answer even the most basic questions on who their group is

It's also worth noting that the organisers can only be contacted by email-it's only recently that they have been 'replying' (if you can call it that) on the FB page, but only under the name 'UK peoples initiative'.

And...they have removed the graphic that displays people who are Not Attending- thereby giving a false picture of their popularity...

This discussion continues on Auto's thread "20 Dec. Dodgy as fuck"

Mike Harman

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Mike Harman on December 16, 2010

Not sure if people are following it, but there's been a tonne of complaints to the BBC regarding the Jody McIntyre interview, then one of the editors posted a blog post about it defending the interview and dismissing the complaints as via an internet campaign, which in turn has led to nearly 1,000 comments on that blog post, and now people are complaining to the BBC/OfCom about the blog post/complaints process. http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/theeditors/2010/12/interview_with_jody_mcintyre.html

On the one hand this is a side issue, on the other it feels like the BBC and other media sources, at least in the UK where people are paying attention, are in a much tighter spot than they'd usually be when doing their routine on protests.

There's plenty of video footage and photos to balance against the official broadcasts, things which are quickly on 24 hour news then forgotten are being recorded by people for posterity (like that interview itself). I don't think I've seen it happen on this scale where the official line is pored over and deconstructed within an hour or so of being put out there, and with so much more or less unrefutable stuff to back it up (as opposed to just pointing out general bias or the odd factual smudge which is often the limit usually). Feels like at least a little bit that the coverage is seriously backfiring and creating even more anger and opposition, and starting to poke holes in the constant repetition of 'peaceful protest' that was everywhere a month ago.

Auto

13 years 7 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Auto on December 16, 2010

http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=150548608327106&ref=mf

A campaign has appeared to try and get as many people to run for NUS president as possible. They are trying to get 100 people to run as part of a 'Confusion Slate'.

Ok, so we need about 100 people to run for NUS President as part of the CONFUSION SLATE. Each candidate will get 7 minutes to speak freely in which time they can thoroughly baffle conference, give them a speech on the benefits of situationist politics, or just rant about how shit the NUS have been over the last year. Between us we will have over 700 minutes of speaking time. Think about how much amazing shit we can say in 700 minutes! Please join us in our mission to confuse.

Mike Harman

13 years 6 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Mike Harman on January 7, 2011

Good video interview of two 14 year olds who were caught up in the baton charge against the Treasury

Luther Blissett

13 years 4 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Luther Blissett on February 18, 2011

Wellclose Square, page 5

"someone calling himself Luther Blissett, in particular - who should not in any way be confused with the various post-situ incarnations: he's some kind of proprietorial trot who has Ho Chi Minh as his avatar),"

It's Charlie Flowers who is working with ex-EDL neocon Matthew Kaplan in a facebook group called 'NiceOnesUK' http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=225636574209 set up with most of his Cheerleader 'group' members.

I don't know why he took the name. Possibly to cause confusion. I was prominently posting EDL info last June/July in the run-up to their Bradford demo (via twitpic as LutherBlissetts http://twitpic.com/2eqp38 and via twitter.com/LutherBlissetts)

Flowers has taken the name for himself.
He has a thing about Vietnam and his facebook page http://www.facebook.com/lutherblissett2000 has this address:
11 Xuan Dieu Rd., K5 Nghi Tam
Hanoi, Vietnam

Luther Blissett

11 years 4 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Luther Blissett on March 9, 2013

Got url of Flower's alterego on facebook incorrect it's http://www.facebook.com/lutherblisset2000