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Squatageddon - Cops Raid UK Social Centres

police-in-greenhouse.jpg [Related Image]

The riot police have today begun raiding London social centres and market gardens in a move presumably meant to intimidate anyone considering protesting against the sycophantic drivel of tomorrow’s royal wedding.

The raids began early this morning with the RatStar and OffMarket Social Centres and Transition Heathrow’s market garden Grow Heathrow all getting visits from the Territorial Support Group. That’s right, the ones who have a fetish for kettling anyone with a banner and are often nearby when protestors like Ian Tomlinson or Blair Peach die.

Police Raid a dangerous market garden
Photo courtesy of Transition Heathrow

Apparently the warrant at the RatStar was for stolen goods. One might think it more than a little dodgy that so many riot police would turn up in that case. One might even be tempted to believe that we are witnessing a police force that has been turned into an organ of the monarchy’s PR people. Because there is to be a royal wedding tomorrow, in case you’d forgotten. And nothing must be allowed to interfere with the fawning lackyism that our rulers like to refer to as patriotism. There have been a number of arrests. And the Green and Black Cross have set up a legal helpline for those affected on 07946 541 511.

During the attack on Grow Heathrow, sleeping people were dragged out of their beds by up to 40 cops.  The police left having seen mostly vegetables and some bees. I’m unconvinced that vegetables (organic or not) required the possibly illegal presence of dozens of riot cops to stop them from being repurposed as guillotines or whatever mad nonsense the cops will inevitably say they had specific intelligence about in the press release which will be sent out just in time for the evening news. Perhaps it was the bees that were troubling them. We know how many injuries the poor old police have suffered from gangs of (presumably terrorist) buzzing insects in the past, after all.

In a blog post on the events, Joe from Transition Heathrow writes:

The raid was one of many acts of intimidation happening right now across London. This is a crackdown on people who are bored of the state and the police controlling our lives.

Ain’t that the truth.

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  1. #1 Riseup 28 Apr 11

    We all know with regards to the police, the mask is well and truly off. The very existence of the Association of Chief Police Officers, the ACPO, shows what a police state Britain has stooped to. The Police reform bill is going thru the lords as I type, it seems that even the Torys realize that the police genie is well and truly out of the bottle.
    This story is one of ethnic cleansing, and I am sure 100 percent that the good old British Bobby would relish the chance to send everyone who did not fit their idea of a human, to concentration camps. I do not feel that I am exaggerating, when I say this, you just have to see the hate in their eyes when confronting the public.

  2. #2 Riseup 28 Apr 11

    Just an after thought,

    did you know we have a police reform unit at the home office, I think we are the only nation in Europe that has one, so please direct all concerns to them.

  3. #3 ciderpunx 28 Apr 11

    @Riseup now, now they're ’only doing their jobs’.

    Indymedia reports that there will be a solidarity demo at Edgeware Rd. Police Station from 12 tomorrow.

    https://london.indymedia.org/tumbles/promoted#tumble-8896

  4. #4 ajf 29 Apr 11

    Riseup: >>I do not feel that I am exaggerating, when I say this, you just have to see the hate in their eyes when confronting the public.<<

    Seriously? You may not be exaggerating, but you are generalising terribly. When I see people who claim to be 'progressive' or whatever saying something like 'the police are all oppressive brutes' it makes me realise how difficult it is to make humans genuinely progressive and to move beyond their narrow prejudices.

    Sure, some police are like that. I have also had experience with the police when they have done their job remarkably well in difficult situations.

    Also, >>ethnic cleansing<<. Against which ethnicity? Prove it.

    NI has reported an example of the police getting thins wrong. It's good they've reported this. The nature of journalism and human nature means it's unlikely to ever report the police getting things right. You may claim it's because they never do get things right, but I think it more likely to be:

    1: The NI has little interest in supporting the police. It's not what it's 'for'. That's not necessarily to say it's actively biased, but it's not what it reports on.

    2. Stories of competence are boring.

    One interesting thing I have noticed when talking to people who are strongly anti-police is that they commit the all-too-easy mistake of judging a 'community' and a 'person' in the same way. They hate 'The Police', and hence 'that policeman' must be a bad person. Or alternatively 'that policeman' was a bad person, therefore 'The Police' as a whole are bad.

  5. #5 ciderpunx 29 Apr 11

    @ajf

    One interesting thing I have noticed when talking to people who are strongly anti-police is that they commit the all-too-easy mistake of judging a 'community' and a 'person' in the same way. They hate 'The Police', and hence 'that policeman' must be a bad person. Or alternatively 'that policeman' was a bad person, therefore 'The Police' as a whole are bad.


    I'm not sure that its necessary to adopt a position on the police ’as people’ to be critical of their behaviour organisationally, which normally takes the side of power and the status quo. But you have to remember that there is always an interplay between an institution and the members of that institution.
    So, for example when the Stephen Lawrence inquiry reported that the Met was institutionally racist that implied that there existed potentially insurmountable social and professional obstacles for cops who decided not to embrace or at least implicitly condone racism. I guess I'm just saying that its not as straightforward as ’hate the sin not the sinner’.

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Charlie Harvey a New Internationalist contributor

Charlie Harvey is the IT Manager here at New Internationalist. He's active in both the activist and tech communities and is a vocal advocate of Free Software. You can read more on his main Charlie Harvey site.

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