BACK ISSUES

SchNEWS 705, 15th January 2010
Wild at Heart - Our comrades at SMASH EDO have announced the location of their Remember Gaza demo... plus, Gaza convoy finally allowed in after being held at port and attacked by Egyptian police, legal observer arrested at Smash EDO Carnival Against the Arms Trade finally overturns charges, European Court rules Section 44 stop 'n search illegal, the Christmas period has seen no let up for migrants in the squats and camps of Calais, and more...

SchNEWS 704, 20th December 2009
Not a Hopenhagen - As World Leaders dither inside, SchNEWS looks to the thousands of dissenters outside the Copenhagen Climate Conference.... plus, the Camp for Climate Action activists target Canada for wanting to exploit the oil their climate koshing tar sands, as much of Iraqs's oil finally got auctioned off last week was was mission accomplished for the US?, a prominent member of the EDL is charged with soliciting murder and using threatening, abusive or insulting words, Israeli goverment irked as UK warrant for war crimes issued to foreign ministe, and more...

SchNEWS 703, 11th December 2009
SchNEWS Guide to Copenhagen - Due to too many people being away (probably) burning babylon, being sick or generally too lazy, there is no print issue this week. But we didn't want you not gettin' any of yer regular fix and wanted to give you the lowdown on going to Copenhagen, so have patched together this 'blink and you'll miss it' Climate Conference special edition for the web only (where special means er, compact.)

SchNEWS 702, 4th December 2009
If You're Not Swiss-ed Off... - Ten years after Seattle, thousands congregate in Geneva to resist world trade organisation meeting... plus, 25 years after the Bhopal disaster and still no justice for the victims, protests in Wales over biomass plant at Port Talbot, Sussex students protest at staff cuts, Lithuanian national is imprisoned over London G20 protests, we gloat as the capitalist edifice of Dubai crumbles, and more...

SchNEWS 701, 27th November 2009
Buy Buy Cruel World - SchNEWS hopes the anti-consumerist message will finally gain purchase with international 'Buy Nothing Day' tomorrow... plus, the Target Barclays campaign is launched, opposing their investment in the arms trade, protest camp against opencast coal mine in Scotland is under threat of eviction, protest camp by the sacked Vesta workers on the Isle Of Wight is evicted, and more...

SchNEWS 700, 20th November 2009
Good Cop Bad Cop - Things are hotting up for the COP15 UN Climate Conference in Copenhagen next month... plus, despite being out of the news, the plight of the Tamil people in Sri Lanka continues to be dire, protesters disrupt the NATO Parliamentary Assembly in Edinburgh, the state clampdown on animal rights protesters continues as four are raided and arrested, the far-right march in Glasgow – and again are outnumbered, but next month move to Nottingham, and more...

SchNEWS 699, 13th November 2009
Mexican Wave - Around 200,000 workers, teachers, students, unionists, farmers and social campaigners shut Mexican cities down on Wednesday (12th) in a national strike... plus, importer of Israeli produce grown on occupied Palestinian territories sees sustained protests, ex-soldier who served in Afghanistan is arrested over his opposition to the war, protests against the NATO meeting in Edinburgh begin as anti-militarist convergence space is opened, and more...

SchNEWS 698, 6th November 2009
Post Apocalypse - British postal workers are on strike as looming privatisation brings in a round of lay-offs, wage cuts and higher work demands... plus, racist far-right march in Leeds and London - where violence breaks out between far-right groups, Brighton film-maker has his charges dropped, fox hunting monitors are violently attacked by hunt supporters in Sussex, harsh repression continues to be dealt out to refugees at Calais, and more...

SchNEWS 697, 30th October 2009
A Liberal Helping? - SchNEWS looks critically at the Guardian's expose of a police spotter card for so-called 'domestic extremists'... plus, it's been another hot week for climate protesters in Britain as high-emissions coal power is targeted, a round-up of Halloween direct action protests in Britain against the arms industry and animal testing, Britain is deporting refugees back into the dangerous warzones they fled - and a group sent back to Iraq have found themselves being sent back to Britain, and more....

Copyleft - Information for direct action - Published weekly in Brighton since 1994

Home | Friday 22nd January 2010 | Issue 706

WAKE UP!! IT'S YER FINDING FAULT LINE...

SchNEWS

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Story Links : Haiti: The Aftershock Doctrine | Mobs And Coppers | Lanark'y In The Uk | Rent A'sunderland | Stoke'ing The Fires | Girls With Latitude | Inside Schnews | And Finally

HAITI: THE AFTERSHOCK DOCTRINE

As the rescue effort winds down and the body count piles up, SchNEWS takes a look at why this earthquake hit so many so hard, and how the international aid effort is being subverted by military and corporate power.

As Haiti’s total estimated dead hovers at around 200,000, the earthquake has hit the country so hard that it’s dropped a whole digit off its former population of 10 million. It’s almost a law of world injustice that the poorer the country, the more vague the body count.

Haiti is a unique place. The only nation to be founded by a slave rebellion, its angry population of African slaves managed to defeat the French back in 1791. Renamed as Haiti - the original Arawak name for the island - it was the Cuba of its day- an inspiration to enslaved peoples the world over and a thorn in the side of the imperial regimes.

Unfortunately for Haitians, the western powers have long memories. Unable to reconquer Haiti militarily, the people of Haiti have been subjected to blockades and one sided trade agreements ever since. The prize for most outrageous treaty probably goes to the 19th century French government, which demanded that Haitians pay France reparations for lost earnings following the loss of ‘their’ slaves.

As French neo-colonialism was replaced by the American variety, years of massive loans on impossible interest rates has meant that any money from Haiti’s cash crops have gone directly to international banks, after corrupt leaders took their cut.

The infamous hereditary dictatorship of ‘Papa’ Doc and ‘Baby’ Doc Duvalier ruled the country with a unique form of voodoo oppression between 1957 and 1986. The three decades of Duvalier rule saw Haiti change from being able to feed its population to becoming a cash crop economy reliant on US food imports.

One of the many unpleasant sights from the Haitian disaster was former US presidents George W Bush and Bill Clinton standing together, earnestly encouraging people to help Haiti. Haiti’s former president, Jean Bertrand Aristide, was deposed by Bush Senior in ’91, reinstated on Clinton’s orders by US troops (on condition that he sign up to harsh neo-liberal measures), only to be deposed by the Marines in 2004.

All of this provides some sort of context for the relief effort that’s underway. Lack of money and the complete absence of almost any social function of the state meant that when the magnitude 7 quake hit so close to Port au Prince, whole neighbourhoods of the slum city disintegrated. The airport, seaport, roads and communication links were all so badly built and their destruction so total that the normal routes for aid and rescue teams were barred.

Whilst everyone else from Medicine San Frontiers to the Icelandic government were busy sending food, medics and drinking water, the Americans dithered, sending the aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson three days later, without emergency relief supplies but with plenty of sidewinder missiles and combat helicopters. Even as the rest of the world pitched in, the Americans claimed they couldn’t deliver aid without making sure Haiti was safe first. In that peculiar form of helping that we’ve learned to know so well, the Americans sent in the Marines (again). Some 10,000 troops have been, or are about to be deployed - a readymade army of occupation.

As of Tuesday, the US military is officially in direct control of Haiti. But then, in reality, Haiti has been effectively under occupation on and off for years now. The troops providing aid should be seen in this light - as the Geneva Convention states: “The duties of the occupying power include ... providing the population with food and medical supplies; agreeing to relief schemes... maintaining medical facilities and services; [and] ensuring public health and hygiene.”

In an effort to prove that the military presence is somehow necessary, the US media has been hard at work painting a picture (just like New Orleans post Katrina) of criminal gangs, mass lootings and ‘human rats’ (to quote Time Magazine) that need pacifying in order to be given assistance. Yet the word from agencies on the ground is that apart from the desperate search for food and basic supplies, the population has been relatively quiet.
The militarisation of the Haiti aid effort has caused huge problems for international NGOs. Medicine Sans Frontiers has publicly criticised the USA for slowing down and mismanaging the aid effort. Since Sunday MSF medics and 5 planes carrying 85 tonnes of drugs and surgical supplies have been turned away from the airport due to the prioritisation of military air traffic.

Francoise Saulnier, head of MSF’s legal department said, “We lost three days, and these three days have created a massive problem with infection, with gangrene, with amputations that are needed now, while we could have really spared this to those people.”

Just as it did in Iraq, the US military has been trying to control the flow of information out of Haiti. Yesterday ( 21st) the military ordered the removal of all international journalists from the Haitian capital’s airport, without bothering to supply any explanation.
Assuming that aid workers can prevent starvation and disease from taking many more lives, the aid effort will slowly turn into a reconstruction effort. As much as Haitians no doubt

appreciate any help right now, the form of aid will have a major bearing on Haiti’s direction over next few decades. The IMF is talking about a Marshall Plan for Haiti. Originally the plan was for a loan of $100 (£60) million that included demands for wage cuts and raised prices.

Public pressure from debt relief activists such as Jubilee USA, complete with the Facebook campaign “No shock doctrine for Haiti” managed to curtail some of the most obviously exploitative aspects of the IMF’s proposal. Anti-capitalista Naomi Klein called this victory “unprecedented in my experience and shows that public pressure in moments of disaster can seriously subvert shock doctrine tactics.”
 
As witnessed during Katrina and the ‘04 tsunami, the public response looks set to overwhelm the response of governments and international institutions. In Britain alone, the public has already donated £31 million via the Disasters Emergency Committee. The DEC is part run by the government, and, although they may be good at distributing aid, don’t expect much in the way of criticism over the handling of Haiti’s ongoing disaster.

For anarchists/activists who do want to donate to the aid effort without compromising their anti-state credentials, Medicine Sans Frontiers (http://www.msf.org.uk) and Medicine Du Monden (http://www.mdmuk.org.uk) have a consistent track record of doing (and saying) the right thing.

Keywords: anti-corporate, disaster, earthquake, haiti, usa
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MOBS AND COPPERS

Monday’s Smash EDO demo forced the Brighton bomb makers to shut up shop after surrounding the factory with the Remember Gaza funeral procession.

The protest, commemorating the victims of the Israeli massacre in Gaza a year ago, began in Wild Park, close to the Home Farm Road site. As hundreds of protesters gathered the police attempted to issue Section 14 notices in an attempt to impose conditions on the demo.

In a memorial to the 1400+ Palestinians killed, around 300 black-clad protesters carried coffins and banners towards the factory. At the bottom of the road the protest split, with most of the crowd scrambling up the bank into the woods behind in an attempt to make it to the factory cross country. The rest remained at the bottom of the road, which was blocked off by lines of police vans, where they read the names of the victims of Israeli aggression. The back of EDO was surrounded, as mounted police, and dogs guarded the fence. With the police beating protesters with batons, some managed to get into the back of a nearby bakers through a wire fence, only to be met by more of the baton-brigade, causing a tactical withdrawal into the safety of the woods. The police weren’t risking any re-run of the Shut ITT demo in October 2008 (see SchNEWS 651) when protesters managed to redecorate the back of the factory in shades of red, and despite the ingenuity of those seeking redress for the Gaza atrocities, the police presence was too overwhelming on this occasion to make it onto site.

The crowd regrouped on the main road, with several requiring medical attention. The demo then moved off into town, peacefully but purposefully. At several points police attempted to block off the road but the protesters surged round the sides of police lines.

The procession was briefly kettled on Lewes Road, before police allowed it to progress to The Level park. The police announced the march could go no further but protesters pushed on into town.

As the crowd began to disperse into the streets, police locked down the city centre, closing off roads even when there was no sign of marchers. Around 50 peaceful protesters were kettled in the narrow streets of the North Laines for around an hour as evening shoppers looked on. A roaming group of four marchers carrying a Remember Gaza banner tried to give a stray copper a taste of his own medicine by using the banner to kettle him against a building but the humourless plod made his escape by tearing it down.
Leading up to the demo police had been ramping up the tension, staking out pre-demo meetings and following and harassing known activists. On Sunday night, a local squat was raided by armed police on spurious burglary grounds. One man was held until the demo was over, then released without charge.

Coverage from the local rag The Argus once again sidestepped the real story focussing instead on the ‘hijacking’ of the city centre and the chaos and disruption of a single day’s dissent. The expression of outrage for the presence of activists in the bohemian shopping resort and for non-compliance with the police before the event fails to see or ask the obvious. As a spokesperson for Smash EDO rightly pointed out: where is the outrage for the devastating loss of human life in Gaza? Where is the support for the legal right to protest? Why would activists campaigning against the production of arms in their own town ever consider complying with the political policing of an event designed to silence all dissent? Wake up Brighton: while bomb makers remain at large in our town we should be thankful that there are those who have something to say about it.

*See smashedo.org.uk

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LANARK'Y IN THE UK

After months of threats, harassment and night-time tree-felling attempts, Mainshill solidarity camp in South Lanarkshire, Scotland, is gearing up for an eviction date with even more hype than the latest celebrity big whatever. Since June last year the camp has been sabotaging attempts to dig 1.7 million tonnes of new coal from under natural woodland in one of the most heavily mined areas in Europe (see SchNEWS 701) and don’t intend to take this forced removal lying down (unless it’s in front of a bulldozer that is).

Tip-offs have given the date as Monday 25th, so activists are holding a pre-eviction gathering this Saturday 23rd to Tuesday 26th and need bodies to come and support the camp, strengthen the barricades and defend the site. The call is out for anyone who has been involved with the campaign or newcomers to the fight to join them. If you can’t make it down for the weekend, come on the Monday or Tuesday to continue the occupation...

* See www.coalactionscotland.noflag.org.uk

Keywords: mainshill, scotland
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RENT A'SUNDERLAND

Members of three refugee support groups joined forces on Friday (15th) to demonstrate outside government offices in Newcastle. They were protesting the deportation of Cameroonian Bermine Lili and her son Kieron. Lili was sold into prostitution after being duped into leaving Cameroon. Her family has threatened to kill her if she returns to Cameroon due to the ‘shame’ of being a trafficked woman.

Since fleeing her captors in France she has tried to build a life in Sunderland, but has been constantly threatened with deportation. Despite having been given an expulsion date of last Monday (18th), nobody came for the family, leaving mother and son living on a knife edge. They have now been given a new date of Monday 25th. There will be another protest this Friday (22nd), outside the Government Offices North East, from 2pm.

To get involved email TCAR (Tyneside Community Action for Refugees) on tynesidecarn@yahoo.co.uk

Keywords: deportation
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STOKE'ING THE FIRES

The EDL’s racist roadshow is moving on to Stoke, with a march planned for Saturday (23rd) with “Stop the Islamisation of Europe”. They plan to meet at the Wetherspoons pub in Hanley town centre in the early afternoon for the usual dose of cheap dutch courage before hitting the streets.

Unite Against Fascism and Love Music Hate Racism will be there to meet them with a unity rally, although, given the likely police presence and tactics, staying mobile and autonomous looks the better option.

*See www.uaf.org.uk/news.asp?choice=100111

Keywords: antifa, english defence league, stoke on trent, uaf
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GIRLS WITH LATITUDE

A fundraising event for Latitude Safe Space, Brighton’s new and only women’s homeless shelter, is taking place at The Cowley Club on Saturday 30th January.
Organised by the newly formed Brighton

Anarcha-Feminist Group, the free event runs 10am to 6.30pm with workshops, storytelling, radical knitting, DIY herbalism, subvertising, zine-making, discussions, skill-shares, food and zine distro. All ages and gen­ders are welcome and there will be a creche and vegan food.
Proceeds from the evening gig starting at 7pm go to Latitude Safe Space. The live programme includes music from Aspel Orchid, Beth Swain, Eastlope Blugrass Council and spoken word from political poet Sharon Tyas.

*Contact latitudesafespace@googlemail.com or brightonanarchafeminists@lists.aktivix.org for more info.

Keywords: herstory, machismo, wimmin
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INSIDE SCHNEWS

Animal rights activist Lewis Pogson was sentenced to 3 years imprisonment this week for his involvement in a raid on Highgate Farm which saw the rescuing of 129 rabbits.

 *Please send letters of support to: Lewis Pogson A6454AK, HMP Lincoln,106 Greetwell Road, Lincoln, LN2 4BD, England. For information on AR prisoner support see alfsg.org.uk

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AND FINALLY

Terrorists – they are everywhere in post 9/11 America. Apparently they’ve even infiltrated the scouts, if the appearance of one eight-year-old New Jersey cub scout on a Homeland Security watch list is anything to go by (which it clearly isn’t). Young Mikey Hickses’ date of birth alone should be enough to prove he’s more Akela than Al Qaeda.

But after someone is dib dib dobbed in to the security forces, everyone by the same name nets themselves a place on the selectee list.

One step below the no-fly list, the selectee list marks you out for special attention every time you get on a plane. Not the sort of special attention that gets extra leg room and a complimentary drink, however. Instead, members of this not so exclusive club (although there’s no official figures, 81,793 frustrated travellers have so far formally asked that they be struck off the list) are marked down for extra frisking and stern faced aggressive questioning on subjects presumably related to a namesake’s life.

Young Mikey got his first pat down at the age of two and was recently again heavily frisked and searched on a family holiday, despite not even wearing his cub uniform complete with Jihad level 2 and Home Explosives badges.

Presumably he’s training up a rebel network of cub packs who will rise up and unleash a surprise bob-a-job week of terror. ‘Be prepared’ America!

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Disclaimer

SchNEWS warns all readers, smashing the arms trade is a walk in the park. Honest.

 

SchMOVIES

REPORTS FROM THE VERGE - Smash EDO/ITT Anthology 2005-2009 - A new collection of twelve SchMOVIES covering the Smash EDO/ITT's campaign efforts to shut down the Brighton based bomb factory since the company sought its draconian injunction against protesters in 2005.

UNCERTIFIED - OUT NOW on DVD- SchMOVIES DVD Collection 2008 - Films on this DVD include... The saga of On The verge – the film they tried to ban, the Newhaven anti-incinerator campaign, Forgive us our trespasses - as squatters take over an abandoned Brighton church, Titnore Woods update, protests against BNP festival and more... To view some of these films click here

ON THE VERGE - The Smash EDO Campaign Film - is out on DVD. The film police tried to ban - the account of the four year campaign to close down a weapons parts manufacturer in Brighton, EDO-MBM. 90 minutes, £6 including p&p (profits to Smash EDO)

TAKE THREE - SchMOVIES Collection DVD 2007 featuring thirteen short direct action films produced by SchMOVIES in 2007, covering Hill Of Tara Protests, Smash EDO, Naked Bike Ride, The No Borders Camp at Gatwick, Class War plus many others. £6 including p&p.

V For Video Activist - the SchMOVIES 2006 DVD Collection - twelve short films produced by SchMOVIES in 2006. only £6 including p&p.

SchMOVIES DVD Collection 2005 - all the best films produced by SchMOVIES in 2005. Running out of copies but still available for £6 including p&p.

SchNEWS Books

SchNEWS At Ten - A Decade of Party & Protest - 300 pages, £5 inc p&p (within UK)

Peace de Resistance - issues 351-401, 300 pages, £5 inc p&p

SchNEWS of the World - issues 300 - 250, 300 pages,£4 inc p&p.

SchNEWS and SQUALL’s YEARBOOK 2001 - SchNEWS and Squall back to back again - issues 251-300, 300 pages, £4 inc p&p.

SchQUALL - SchNEWS and Squall back to back - issues 201-250 - Sold out - Sorry

SchNEWS Survival Guide - issues 151-200 - Sold out - Sorry

SchNEWS Annual - issues 101-150 - Sold out - Sorry

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These books are mostly collections of 50 issues of SchNEWS from each year, containing an extra 200-odd pages of extra articles, photos, cartoons, subverts, a “yellow pages” list of contacts, comedy etc. SchNEWS At Ten is a ten-year round-up, containing a lot of new articles.

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