BACK ISSUES

SchNEWS 712, 5th March 2010
School of Hard Knocks - Students at Sussex University came into violent conflict with riot cops on Wednesday (3rd) as they occupied the executive nerve centre of their university. Several weeks in the planning by Stop the Cuts campaign, around 80 students rushed the ‘fortified’ Sussex House building with a supporting demo outside of around 300 people, all in protest against the proposed cuts to university funding...

SchNEWS 711, 26th February 2010
Greek Fire - Greece has once again been rocked by protests, strikes and civil unrest as Eurozone austerity measures kick in... plus, far-right losers the SDL are seen off the streets of Edinburgh, Colombian riot police attack protesting workers demanding better conditions at BP owned oil company, Tree hugging tramps declare war on Tesco, Protests are called as more Gaza defendants are banged up, and more...

SchNEWS 710, 19th February 2010
Gaza Defendants Hammered - As Judge-mental Dennis hands down vicious sentences to London Gaza protesters.... plus, 700 activists converge on Aldermaston nuclear facility for mass blockade, Irish Shell protester jailed for seven months, after last week's illegal eviction activists re-establish migrant solidarity centre, Cameron's cuddly conservatives promise a crackdown on travellers and squatters, and more...

SchNEWS 709, 12th February 2010
Slung Out On Yer Frontier - SchNEWS asks you and whose gendarmerie? As French cops crackdown on migrant welfare centre... plus, activists take on companies importing goods from illegally occupied Palestinian territories, Iranian anti-regime campaigner Bita Ghaedi goes into the fourth week of hunger strike in her fight against deportation, Turkish anti-militarists set to stand trial for “alienating people from military service” and “praising crime and criminals”, and more...

SchNEWS 708, 5th February 2010
Eyewitness Afghanistan - From Kemp Town to Kabul, as SchNEWS interviews Al Jazeera journalist Medyan Dairieh about his take on the war... plus, Honduras' 'return to democracy' sees the coup leaders holding on to power and upping the repression, Kingsnorth Climate Campers win in the High Court against unlawful police stop and searches, No Borders and SoS Soutien open an autonomous safe space in Calais, and more...

SchNEWS 707, 29th January 2010
Lanarky in Action - As the National Eviction Team move in on Mainshill Solidarity Camp... plus, they finally get around to putting a price on Blair's head, the English Defence League embark on a racist rampage through Stoke, French police evict a night shelter and destroy the makeshift camp erected by migrants in protest, a coalition of No Borders activists and local nimbys help derail plans for a new deportation centre in Crawley, and more...

SchNEWS 706, 22nd January 2010
Haiti: The Aftershock Doctrine - As the rescue effort winds down SchNEWS looks at how the international aid effort is being subverted by military and corporate power... plus, Monday’s Smash EDO demo forced the Brighton bomb makers to shut up shop, the EDL’s racist roadshow is moving on to Stoke, Mainshill solidarity camp in South Lanarkshire is gearing up for an eviction date, and more...

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...

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

Home | Friday 12th March 2010 | Issue 713

WAKE UP!! IT'S YER CUT BACK TO THE BARE BONES...

SchNEWS

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Story Links : Sussex, Lies And Videotape | Schcoop! - No Cutbacks For Sussex Fat Cats | Sea Shepherd Roundup : Whaling Banshees | A-fence-is Weapon | Hungry For Reform | Hey Joe | Coal-amity | Tesco A No Go | And Finally

SUSSEX, LIES AND VIDEOTAPE

SUSSEX UNI CUTS: NO EXPENSE IS PARED.....

Following last week’s ‘Stop The Cuts’ demonstration and occupation of the senior management’s offices (see SchNEWS 712) six Sussex University students had been suspended and excluded from campus. The six had been ‘positively identified’ following Sussex Police’s thuggish altercations on campus.

If that weren’t draconian enough, the university has got an injunction preventing ‘occupational protest’ on campus. Universities have been granted anti-protest injunctions in the past- generally against animal rights protesters. Sussex has gone further in banning protest/occupation for whatever reason. Scared of more direct action they’ve gone into overkill mode against campus protest.

Unsurprisingly this OTT reaction has been a red flag to a bull for students already angry at campus cuts and bloated senior management salaries. This Thursday saw an unprecedented 500 strong demonstration for the reinstatement of the six students. Later a several hundred strong student mob went on an impromptu rampage round the university management buildings before winding up at the main lecture hall for an occupation, sorry ‘autonomous teaching space.’ At the last count scores of students are still there, with plans to stay there until the ‘Sussex Six’ were allowed back. At around 5pm the university issued a partial climbdown- leading to cheers from the liberated lecture hall. The six would be allowed back on campus to study, but not to have any fun or do any troublemaking.

*On Thursday the 18th of March the UCU (University and College Union) will be taking strike action against the planned 115 job losses. Staff will be on the picket line, they’ll appreciate support from anyone who wants to come and show some solidarity.

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SCHCOOP! - NO CUTBACKS FOR SUSSEX FAT CATS

As Sussex students take their resistance to funding cuts to the heart of their university’s governing elite (see SchNEWS 712), details of the lifestyles of those making the cuts are trickling out. The £100,000+ salaries of 14 Sussex managers isn’t enough with expense accounts regularly dipped into to make up the shortfall.

Claims seen by students include pro vice chancellor for education Joanne Wright spending £1,811.25 on a Times Higher Education award jolly at the Grosvenor House Hotel on Park Lane on 15th October 2008. Although dinner was included they still claimed £253.95 for refreshments. Colleague pro vice chancellor Robert Allison has matched her appetite for fine food, even wining and dining arms company bosses – in July 2008 he spent £147.50 at Drakes Hotel’s Gingerman restaurant with Rolls Royce representatives. Since the start of the current round of spending cuts last September the gourmet has submitted £1,265.41 just in claims for restaurant meals.

Despite the cuts to courses and staff Sussex bosses saw fit to appoint another Pro Vice Chancellor last year, to try and get a cut of some of the lucrative foreign market. Last November Professor Chris Marlin was appointed Pro-Vice Chancellor to ‘provide senior academic leadership for the University’s internationalisation strategy’, according to the uni’s website. Even before taking up his post the prof had already benefited from Sussex hospitality. In claims seen exclusively by SchNEWS, the computer science boffin, jetting in from Australia for his interview last July, stayed at the £132 a night Hilton Metropole racking up a total expense bill of over £2,500 for his seaside jaunt. Such was Chris’ concern at being out of pocket that he e-mailed the uni a week after his return chasing up payment.

He must have been chuffed at his appointment and the prospect of sampling more of the local culinary scene with tastes ranging from the traditional – fish restaurants – to international cuisine, as is only consistent with his ‘internationalisation strategy’. Catching the last of the summer sun Chris spent another week here in September, but perhaps the cutbacks were already kicking in, as he only claimed around a grand for this outing.
However, this is all dwarfed by his claims on taking up his post in mid-November. Relocation expenses claimed from then until Christmas amount to around £12,000, with shipping and accommodation in a cottage in Lewes comprising the bulk.

More dubious than such run of the mill gravy train high living, is a memo from vice-chancellor Paul Layzell requesting the transfer of his £27,906.55 consultancy fees from the University of Manchester to ‘an account to which I can have free access’, so as not to be counted as taxable salary. No lazy accounting here, honest guv, as the money is to be used for ‘academic travel, personal development, and sundry items of IT equipment etc.’ according to the memo.

As if calling in the cops weren’t enough, the university is planning to charge the Students’ Union (SU) for the policing and security costs of the occupations, suggesting they distance themselves from the Stop The Cuts campaign. Registrar Owen Richards’ proposal for a ‘much stronger dynamic’ is to directly bill the SU for the costs of past and future occupations despite any proof the union is behind them. Should this exceed the £50k SU discretionary annual funding, next year’s funding will be cut. Subsequent hints made by the bosses before the latest occupation to the SU in a petty attempt to weaken the campaign can only end in tears for senior management. This OTT response of the university has merely exposed their fear of direct action protest, and are hoping by means fair or foul to nip them in the bud.

Other interesting reading material by the uni kleptocracy includes advice from a certain Rt Hon Lord Mandelson from the Department for Business Innovation and Skills (BIS) on extremism in universities. Bucking the trend of the cutbacks a ‘Universities-led UK working group on terrorism’ was recently set up. Mandy will be ‘BISy’ with ‘a series of regional workshops, with local police and security officials’. Other tips include advice for unis to collaborate with local authorities’ Prevent partnership to ‘stop people being drawn into terrorism’. Money well spent...

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SEA SHEPHERD ROUNDUP : WHALING BANSHEES

This week Sea Shepherd completed its most ambitious and effective campaign yet against illegal Japanese whaling in the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary. The three month mission - called Operation Waltzing Matilda - was the stuff of epic seafaring adventures, which included having a $1.5 million boat rammed and sunk by a Japanese whaler, a mid-sea collision, and one protester being detained aboard a whaler to be taken to Japan. The campaign managed to stop any whaling for 33 days of the three month whaling season.

Previous years stopped the killing of half the whaler’s quotas, but this year will definitely better those results and cost the whalers tens of millions in profit.

This year Sea Shepherd started with three ships - the Steve Irwin, the Bob Barker - a former Norwegian whaling boat, which was initially able to sail incognito - , the hi-tech trimaram interceptor boat the Ady Gil, and a helicopter. On January 6th the Ady Gil was rammed by the harpoon vessel Shonan Maru 2, cutting it in half. The six crew members made a narrow escape with their lives (See SchNEWS 705).

The captain of the Ady Gil, a New Zealander called Peter Bethune, later responded by riding a jet-ski under the cover of darkness and boarding the Shonan Maru 2 with the intention of issuing a citizens arrest warrant to its captain for the destruction of the Ady Gil and attempted murder of its crew, and slapping them with an invoice for the cost of the ship. He managed to remain on the ship overnight undetected, then approached the bridge of the ship in the morning. Bethune was then taken prisoner and, unbelievably, the harpoon ship was taken out of the whaling operation and sent back to Japan to deliver him to the authorities. It will soon arrive in Japan. Sea Shepherd have a legal team ready to represent Bethune. Every effort to sabotage the whalers amounts to more whales being saved and to tie up a whaling vessel like this is a great result for the campaign. Already the Shonan Maru 2 and another harpoon vessel, the Yushin Maru 3, were taken out of whaling roles and used as security for the larger giant floating whale abattoir, the ship Nisshin Maru.

After losing the Ady Gil, it became harder to track the movements of the whalers in the vast ocean, but, as the Bob Barker was able to masquerade as a Norwegian whaler, it was used to catch the whalers by surprise. Together with the Steve Irwin it was able to get in behind the Nisshin Maru to prevent harpooners loading their catches. There were running water cannon fights as well as volleys of rotten butter stink bombs. Sea Shepherd protesters also sprayed red paint over the ‘research’ signs which the whalers had painted on their sides (cos of course the Japanese are killing hundreds of giant whales for research purposes only). At one point the Yushin Maru 3 rammed the Bob Barker causing a one-metre gash, which was later repaired.

Events unfold on the weekly reality tv documentary, Whale Wars, on Animal Planet cable channel - see http://animal.discovery.com/tv/whale-wars

* See www.seashepherd.org

* For a great first-hand account see www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2010/03/447043.html

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A-FENCE-IS WEAPON

After nearly two years of stressful legal wranglings, five Smash EDO activists are facing possible imprisonment for allegedly shaking a crowd barrier at the Carnival Against the Arms Trade in June 2008 in Brighton.

Some of them were seriously assaulted by police during the demo, and then suffered multiple arrests, house searches and changes of charges.

Their ‘grievous crimes’ have been investigated by a highly motivated team of detectives from Sussex Police’s Major Crime Unit. Their case is constructed from hundreds of evidence exhibits and police witness statements by the Crown’s Complex Prosecutions Department, at an estimated cost of over a million quid.

Sinister political police spy and professional wrong ‘un Sean McDonald seems to have finally lost the plot, producing pages of obscure drivel detailing how he has been following certain activists around for the past five years.

The three-week trial, during which we presume every split-second of the alleged fence-shaking will be exhaustively examined, begins at Brighton Magistrates’ Court, on 16th March.

All five are on trial under Section 4 for ‘fear or provocation of violence’ along with some more minor offences. The original Section 2 ‘violent disorder’ charges were dropped as they may have led to a jury trial where acquittals are more common The defendants have appealed for support at the trial.

*Smash EDO are holding a picket at Barclays Bank on North Street at 12pm on March 17th to mark the seventh anniversary of the Iraq war – Barclays are ITT’s market maker and the largest UK investor in the arms trade.

There will also be a ‘Horrors of War’ noise demo at the EDO’s factory from 3pm-6pm. Bring noise-making equipment, bloody clothes, coffins.

*See www.smashedo.org.uk

Keywords: arms trade, court case, smash edo
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HUNGRY FOR REFORM

With the Yarl’s Wood hunger strike (SchNEWS 711) into its fifth week, 55 detainees at Harmondsworth detention centre have also gone on hunger strike in protest against the UK immigration system.

The hunger strikers released a statement saying, “The immigration system in this country is a cold war that has separated families and their loved ones and has caused mental, physical and emotional torture to both detainees and their families.”

Across the country activists have been stepping up the solidarity campaign. Last Saturday (6th) Newcastle No Borders staged a city centre protest to draw attention to the migrants’ plight.

The five hunger strikers identified as the ‘ringleaders’ of the campaign remain banged up in Holloway prison. On Wednesday, activists gathered outside the prison for the latest in a series of demonstrations demanding their release.

Meanwhile, human rights lawyers are preparing a legal challenge on behalf of 11 women detainees. They are seeking a declaration from the court that the actions of the Home Office and privatised goons from Serco during February’s protest violated the women’s human rights.

The actions of the detainees and the constant on-the-ground campaigning has successfully brought the issue of detention conditions to the fore, with even mainstream media and MPs being pressured into taking an interest.

More actions are in the making. On Saturday (13th) No Borders Wales are planning a demo in Swansea while Detainee Solidarity London will stage a protest outside Harmondsworth.

 *see noborders.org.uk ncadc.org.uk

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HEY JOE

Joe Glenton, a British soldier who came to his (somewhat shattered) senses after a seven month tour of duty in Afghanistan and became a conscientious objector, has been sentenced to nine months in a military prison.

Joe did a bunk from his unit in 2007 after being refused treatment for post traumatic stress disorder, only returning to the UK in 2009, to make himself even more unpopular with top brass by speaking at an anti-war rally (see SchNEWS 699). He then handed himself in.

Although charged with a range of offences, at February’s preliminary hearing the ‘disobeying a lawful order’ charge was dropped and desertion reduced to going AWOL. Joe’s lawyer believes this may have been to avoid the unwanted publicity a defence questioning the legality of the war (and hence legality of orders) would have caused.

This week (5th) he was convicted on the AWOL and given nine months, presumably to act as a deterrent to any other disillusioned soldiers.

Messages of support to: Lance Corporal Joe Glenton, Military Corrective Training Centre, Berechurch Hall Camp, Colchester CO2 9NU

* Read about the plights of objectors around the world at www.wri-irg.org/news/alerts

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COAL-AMITY

Campaigners against the Huntington Lane open cast coal mine took their No New Coal message on a flying tour of nearby Telford last Saturday (6th), draping their banner over local landmarks.

With many trees already felled at the site, the start of mining operations seems imminent. The group are now appealing for support in defending the Shropshire Hills against the proposed mine, which was approved last year.

*see www.wmclimateaction.wordpress.com

Keywords: coal, mining
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TESCO A NO GO

A squatted social centre in Bristol successfully resisted an attempt to evict the site to pave the way for yet another Tesco on Tuesday (9th). Around 30 people held firm against the bailiff hoards with the help of a 12ft tripod.

Meanwhile the new Tesco in Titnore got a warm community welcome as the shiny new facade was redecorated with graffiti saying “TESCO SUCKS” and “GO AWAY” while the locks were superglued shut. One person was arrested and is awaiting charges.

Keywords: bristol, tesco, titnore
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AND FINALLY

A women in New Zealand has found a specter-tacular great new way to raise cash for animals. She claimed that during an exorcism of her house she somehow ‘captured’ the ghosts of an old man and a young girl, then managed to suspend them in holy water before handily decanting them to two glass vials.

She then proceeded to sell their immortal remains by online auction. The phantom apparitions were swiftly snapped up for $2,000 (in line with the the well-known inverse-stupidity law of the general public).

Given the exorcism cost only $100, she’s quids in – although she good-spiritedly donated all proceeds to an animal charity.

The buyers are probably still haunted by the rash nature of their purchase. Trying to figure out what to do with them before demons come to reclaim them for the other side is now a wraith against time.

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Disclaimer

SchNEWS warns all readers, taking on university management is an occupational hazard. 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

(US Postage £6.00 for individual books, £13 for above offer).

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.

Subscribe to SchNEWS: Send 1st Class stamps (e.g. 10 for next 9 issues) or donations (payable to Justice?). Or £15 for a year's subscription, or the SchNEWS supporter's rate, £1 a week. Ask for "originals" if you plan to copy and distribute. SchNEWS is post-free to prisoners.