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The weekly newsletter frmo Justice? - Brighton's direct action collective

SchNEWS This Time Last Year


SchNEWS 552,
21st July, 2006

GUNS AND MOSES Israel's Chief of Staff promises to "turn back the clock in Lebanon by 20 years.” the civillian death toll rises but what's Israel's long term plan? Also anti EDO actions continue in Brighton, Jean Charlez de Menezes murder goes unprosecuted and more.

SchNEWS 551, 14th July, 2006
BI-POLAR DISORDER During the G8 Summit in Russia, SchNEWS looks at the geopolitical shifts around energy supplies at the centre of the discussions, plus the protests in St Petersburg and more

SchNEWS 550,
7th July, 2006

REVOLTING We've made it to issue 550 so here's our state of the indig-nation address. Also details of various direct action groups you can get involved, news of anti war actions and more.

SchNEWS 549, 30th June, 2006
TSARS IN THEIR EYES Russia looks forward to flexing it's muscle in the energy themed G8 Summit they're hosting this year, never mind all that human rights rubbish...Also asylum seekers hunger strike, resistance to Shell pipeline in Ireland continues and more.

SchNEWS 548, 16th June, 2006 FOOD FOR THOUGHT To celerate African Fertilizer Summit in Nigeria we're having a look at the agriculture business around the world. Also fingerprinting and surveillance at UK schools, a Bhopal update and much more.

SchNEWS 547
9th June, 2006

PRICKS AND MORTAR Locals set up a protest camp near Worthing, West Sussex to stop the building of a new Tesco and hundreds of houses on an ancient woodland. Also more protest camp updates, protests and repression in Egypt and the World Naked Bike Ride...

SchNEWS 546,
2nd June, 2006

BREAK THE ICE - The battle to fight climate change begins... This summer there will be a climate change camp. Plus - Iran and nuclear energy, protest camp protects trees in Titnore Woods, Worthing, and sweat-shop made football kit dominates World Cup...

SchNEWS 545, 26th May, 2006
SNATCH-22 - In the face of racist lies by the Home Office and media about asylum seekers we look at life for refugees in the UK. Plus Brian Haw's camp at Parliament Square is raided by police, protests against Shell pipeline in Ireland and more...

SchNEWS 544, 19th May, 2006
WALL OF SHAME - Palestinians defend land from Israeli occupation, and suffer the effects of the removal of US and EU aid. Plus - Glaxo-SmithKline get injunction to silence animal rights protesters, Bono has us seeing red and more...

SchNEWS 543, 12th May, 2006
FLOWER POWER - In Texcoco, (near Mexico city) a flower market was the flashpoint for a bloody showdown between the state and a local community hell-bent on self-rule and autonomy.

SchNEWS 542, 5th May, 2006
DOVER AND OUT - The exporting of live animals starts again as the EU ban ends. Plus - Bolivia renationalises gas supplies, Guantanamo prisoners do guerilla gardening, UK MayDay 2006 Roundup and more...

SchNEWS 541, 28th April, 2006
ONE GOOSE-STEP BEYOND - The far-right in Britain were defeated on the streets - so now they are trying to move into ''politics'. Plus - update from Nepal, Brighton activist reports from Palestine and more...

SchNEWS 540, 21st April, 2006
NEPAL OR NOTHING - SchNEWS writer in Nepal give account of civil unrest as the Nepalese population strike and protest to remove a parasitic, psychopath who calls himself the king.

SchNEWS 539,
7th April, 2006

CO-OP bank are revealed to be not the safe ethical invester they are supposed to be - a follow up report on the Co-Op

SchNEWS 538,
31st March, 2006

SHOULD I STAY OR SHOULD I GO? A look at the causes and effects of UK and EU asylum policy. Also ID cards update, America calling the kettle black, protests continue in France and more.

SchNEWS 537, 24th March, 2006 GAUL TO ARMS New neo-liberal employment laws in France bring millions into the streets and riots break out. Also Anti-Shell protests step up in Ireland, another EDO victory, Schengen's birthday and more.

SchNEWS 536, 17th March, 2006 WATER TORTURE Water companies continue to cream off profits while claiming they're doing all the can to plug leaks, and it's the same the world over. Also, animal testing, deforestation in Tasmania, Shepton Mallet evicted and more.

SchNEWS 535, 10th March, 2006 PIGS MIGHT LIE Charges against 8 more Anti EDO activists are dropped. Woo Hoo! Also an update on the situation in Barcelona and lots more.


Home | Weds 2nd August 2006 | Issue 553/554

NB - This is the second edition of issue 553, produced especially for the Big Green Gathering. Some of it is re-edited articles from 553, plus newer material - including a spoof festival guide, and was renamed Issue 553/554.



Story Links: Wing & A Prayer | Crap Arrest Of The Week | High Fives All Round | Profits Of Doom | Carots And Stick | SchNEWS in Brief | Starlight Express | Debt Of Ingratitude | ...and finally...

Download this PDF to view full issue with SPOOF FESTIVAL GUIDE which was published in the inside pages of this edition, and was not emailed to subscribers. NB - this PDF is laid out onto A3 pages, and is large - 2 meg - because of the graphics in it.



Cheap short-hop flights to the continent could seem a tempting option given that it’s sometimes cheaper to fly from London to Rome than catch a train to Manchester. Due to insanely low taxes on jet fuel, air travel is seeing massive expansion, and is now the fastest-growing contributor to climate change.

Greenhouse gas emissions caused by UK air travel have doubled in the past 13 years. The world’s 16,000 commercial jet airlines generate more than 700 million tonnes of carbon dioxide - more than the total output of Africa. A return flight from the London to New York will use 1.3 tonnes of carbon per person, nearly a quarter of the average annual UK person’s carbon footprint. Heathrow Airport alone handles more than 67 million passengers a year. Between 1979 and 1999 numbers from UK airports increased three-fold and international passenger numbers are up 7% compared to this time last year. According to Airport Watch, if this trend continues it will “take up the entire sustainable emissions budget for all sectors of the UK economy by the 2030s, and all sectors of the EU economy by the 2040s. That means that schools, hospitals, homes, commerce, and industry will not be able to release any emissions if the UK and the EU are to stay within environmental limits.”

Although Neo Labour couldn’t be bothered to consider emissions from aircraft in the Government’s stated target to cut CO2 by 20% from its 1990 levels, there’s been a little more action on the continent, with MEPs recently voting (439 to 74) to tax airline fuel. But that same parliament is also approving the ridiculous emissions trading scheme, which will enable less polluting airlines to trade their surplus allowances of greenhouse gases on the carbon market. Hey presto the big polluters buy these up and the expansion continues!

But it’s not just people who are travelling more. Pressure group Sustain surveyed supermarket shelves to find that only 4% of the grub on sale had been sourced locally. Sustain reckon that to fly in one calorie of lettuce from Los Angeles uses 127 calories in aviation fuel. Not so good for the eco-diet. Food transport counted for some 19 billion vehicle miles and is up 25% since 1992. Our appetite for out of season fare has meant that aircraft food miles have doubled in ten years. Tescopoly imports nearly three quarters of its organic produce.

In 2003, the UK Govt set out its programme for airport expansion which would treble air traffic by 2030, and lead to major expansions at Shoreham, Stansted, Luton, Heathrow, Birmingham and Edinburgh Airports. The same corporations that are professing to be concerned about climate change are pushing this agenda hard, but local campaigns are springing up to oppose development at each airport – see box for details.


Airport Watch – a national umbrella group opposing aviation expansion see

Luton: &


East Midlands:





Flying somewhere soon? Calculate how much carbon is generated per seat at (but ignore the marketing)

To check your general ‘carbon footprint’ see

Crap Arrest Of The Week

For dressing like a Zombie...

Six mates from Minneapolis who were out and about on a ‘Zombie dance party night’ were, according to a police spokesman, “arrested for behaviour that was suspicious and disturbing.” Cops appear to have mistakenly thought that their rucksacks, which contained portable radios, were in fact bombs and the group were potentially toting ‘simulated weapons of mass destruction’. Having been let off with the minor charge of ‘disorderly conduct’ this was “not a case of police overreacting,” said Inspector Janee Harteau, “why would you have those bags if not to intimidate people?”

SchNEWS @ Big Green Gathering
The SchNEWS marquee will be in the campaigns area, with the usual free info-stall, plus a series of workshops on animal rights, Palestine, squatting, Linux, Iceland and news from the Smash EDO campaign. After dusk we’ll be putting on some solar powered SchMOVIES with footage from the direct action front-line. Or just pop by anytime for yer latest anti-capitalist propaganda.


In Ireland, The Pitstop Ploughshares Five, who took a stand against the use of their country as a staging post for the ‘War on Terror’ and damaged military aircraft, found themselves unanimously acquitted by a jury last Tuesday (25th July). They were found not guilty of committing £1.2 million worth of damage to US military aircraft, by a jury in The Four Courts, Dublin, after a thirteen day trial. The five, from the Catholic Worker movement, were arrested during an anti-war action at Shannon Airport in western Ireland, in the build-up to the invasion of Iraq in 2003. At the time, the airport was being used as a supply base and hub for U.S servicemen commuting from the US to the Middle East.

In the early hours of February 3rd 2003, the five cut their way into the airport, poured human blood on the runway used for US military flights and constructed a shrine to Iraqi children. They then began to attack and damage the runway itself and when they got to a hanger housing a US Navy plane, they painted “‘Pit stop of death”’ on the main door. After beginning to dismantle the building, they charged inside and to disarm the warplane with some hammers. On arrest they all were remanded for between four and eleven weeks, facing possible jail sentences of ten years.

This trial turned out to be third time unlucky for the prosecution. The first case ended in a mistrial after five days, and the second collapsed when it emerged that the appointed judge had a personal relationship with Dubya Bush. After this third failure a spokesperson for the US Embassy in Dublin was said that US Inc. was ‘very disappointed’ with the result.

This is, yet again, a vindication that members of the public - a jury - have agreed with the protesters and their claims that they were preventing the greater crimes of war and genocide, as opposed to simply taking the criminal damage charges at face value. This comes virtually on the tenth anniversary of the four Ploughshares women being found not guilty by a jury in Liverpool Court after having done £23million damage to Hawk Jets. They represented themselves and also won with the prevention-of-genocide argument (See SchNEWS 84).

But despite this victory Shannon Airport is still being used by the US military, and the Shannon Planespotters continue to report sightings of CIA Rendition and other covert aircraft. Just last month cleaning staff at the airport claimed to have seen a man in shackles on board a US aircraft.

* For more see and

Profits Of Doom

Despite facing climate chaos, politicians - and the corporations they serve - continue as if nothing is happening to our ecosystem. Busily building more airports, selling plasma TVs and generally rampantly exploiting everything, the multinationals are telling us that, actually, they’re a nice environmentally-concerned bunch - as green as a field full of hippies.

So are the most powerful institutions on our planet slamming on the economic brakes before we get to the cliff edge? Er no, they’re plotting ‘profit-driven’ solutions to the oncoming tumble into the abyss. OK, those eco-nuts might have had some valid points about the whole global warming thing, but don’t think of a changing climate as disaster - look on it as a window to new markets! Judging by the current tsunami of ‘greenwash’, it looks there’s real cash to be made with global warming, and investors are being told to look greenwards to make some serious loot. General Electric, the world’s 11th biggest corporation with £9 billion annual profits, has just launched ‘Ecomagination’, a subsidiary which seeks to make as much cash as possible from all things solar- or wind-powered. And seeking of course, as one former US govt official put it, “to make money in a carbon constrained world”. Investment heavyweights Goldmann Sachs’s ‘Environmental Policy Framework’ tells us they aim to “find effective market-based solutions to address climate change, ecosystem degradation and other critical environmental issues.”

The clear message is that we should ignore the fact that our consumerist culture is one of the root causes of all this, ‘cos our newly greened corporations are gonna tweak a few things, stick up a couple of wind turbines and everything’ll be fine. Shell and BP-Amoco, for example, have been busy transforming their image. They’re no longer oil barons with dodgy environmental and human rights records but ‘energy companies’ seriously committed to combating climate change. BP might have gone from British Petroleum to Beyond Petroleum but it just can’t seem to go Beyond Profit. If you believed the propaganda, you’d think Shell et al were getting out of oil and into making fair trade hemp dungarees. But Big Oil spends less than 1% of its budget on renewable energy, peanuts compared to the damaging search for oil going on all over the planet.

Look at BP, who spent £20 million buying the Solarex Corporation to boost its solar power credentials – but will of course be joining in with plans to spend £3billion over the next five years on oil exploration in Alaska. Meanwhile this week Exxon is expected to report the biggest ever quarterly profit for a corporation, with £5billion made in only three months.

As ‘peak oil’ kicks in (see SchNEWS 499), and governments are forced to swing in the direction of renewable energy, these companies - and their PR machines - will morph into whatever shape is needed to be first in the queue for ‘green energy’ subsidies, while raking it in as prices rise on the remaining supply.

* For more on corporate greenwash see


Imagine a load of strangers turned up, did some digging and discovered large deposits of gold and silver buried beneath your neighbourhood. Bad news: you’re stuffed. As any glance back at history will confirm - you can either accept that a bunch of serious heavies are gonna rush in to rip it all up and cart it off, or, be prepared to take serious action. And this is exactly what has happened in the Kardjali District of Bulgaria.

Back in the 1980s, prospectors visited and decided that the only profitable way to extracting the local gold is to use, er cyanide (around eleven tons of it). Although the proposals would gradually contaminate the local groundwater with toxic poison, this has only been viewed as a slight nuisance, and plans were quickly made to forcibly evict surrounding villages. Only after a prolonged battle with local communities, and the realisation that it really would mean poisoning the water supply for whole Thracian valley area, were plans finally abandoned. 18 years on and a number of corporations are have now re-evaluated the situation and have decided that the size of potential profits are worth a taking the additional ‘strategic and operational risks’.

Profit-hungry Canadian firm (extra ludicrously-named) ‘Euromax’ are one such company. They’ve told investors and potential customers that “while mineral wealth in this region formed the foundation of some of the most powerful dynasties in the ancient world, exploration in modern times has been at best sporadic.” With this Roman Empire spirit, Euromax bought up the mining rights to the area back in 2004. Since then they’ve been beavering away trying to make sure any trifling legal or democratic objections were overturned or bypassed, eventually succeeding in getting the supreme court to rule that no environmental impact concerns need addressing at all. Sorted! Locals, for some strange reason, are less enthusiastic about getting the prospective trashing of their ecosystem, despite the fantastic deal that allows Euromax to hoard 99% of the profits, while bunging the local municipality a measly 1%. After a failed ‘promotional’ campaign in the villages, and when heavy mining equipment started showing up at night, 500 people quickly mobilised and blocked off access to the site.

Since the end of June the people from Popinci, together with their neighbours, have set up a permanent barricade at the hill of Petelovo, shutting the road to the proposed mine. Elderly grannies, mothers with small children, teenagers, middle-aged men and women have all joined the camp to try and save their village. 7 days into the camp, one of the protesters was found with a knife in his chest, following a disagreement with the company’s bodyguards the previous day. No information about the case has so far been made public. Nearly a month later, protesters are still there, declaring that “We will not elect people who are betraying us, instead of supporting us. We will not vote. These people must understand that this state is OURS. We have to redefine our definition for a state.”

See more at Other interesting stuff about Bulgarian mining and pollution at If you’re up for going email

SchNEWS In Brief

  • Last weekend was the NoBorder Camp in Italy’s north west Gorizia on the Slovenian border. At an action at the Deportation Centre in Postojna, Slovenia, around 150 Noborder activists arrived to try to blockade the gates, but were met with heavy handed police, who heavily truncheoned protesters and arrested seven.
  • Are you in the north of England and looking for a ton of organic, nutritious compost? The compost waste from two large events next month - the Camp for Climate Action and the Northern Green Gathering, will be looking for a home. If you can help email


For the first time ever, details of the 1,000 nuclear rail transports that take place in the UK each year have been made publicly available. You can now know for certain that potentially lethal loads of incredibly dangerous materials are definitely thundering through your neighbourhood, with minimal protection on a rickety old infrastructure, although it may be best to avoid any direct derailment action protest in this instance! Talking of accidents, you’ll be reassured to learn that trains on the Dungeness to Willesden Junction route have twice collided with vehicles on an unstaffed level crossing and, in Bridgewater, a cargo of unprotected nuclear waste sat for several hours less than 100 metres from a school in October 2005.

* View the whole terrifying timetable at


As Israel calls up thousands more troops in preparation for a ground invasion of Lebanon, guess who’s likely to have to pay for the all the destruction that’s been caused? You’ve got it – Lebanon! Three Israeli lawyers are about to file a lawsuit in the US against the Lebanese government for compensation which would have to be paid to Israeli businesses for war damages. Nice little earner! The idea is that, despite only being elected last June, the Lebanese government should have prevented Hezbullah from launching its attacks. You see, what’s at stake is Lebanon’s breaching of the International Convention for the Suppression of Terrorism. Not a bad argument coming from a country engaged in a bloody illegal invasion of a neighbouring country that has seen 500 Lebanese killed, including 34 kids in one strike against the southern village of Qana, together with more than 50 of its own civilian population in just over two weeks.

If the Lebanese refuse to cough-up, a tough approach to debt collection is promised. The threat of economic sanctions will ensure that the cash is “collected from Lebanon without its consent.” According to one of the well paid litigators pursuing the case, “we intend to sue other bodies as well in the case that the Lebanese government evades payment. No group associated in any way, shape, or form to Hizbullah is immune to these claims.” And just what are the Lebanese people to make of this? Said lawyer went on, “in my opinion, the Lebanese need to sue their own government”. The perfect answer for profit hungry parasitic lawyers a that like to make money from misery.

...and finally...

Foreign secretary, Margaret Beckett, is ‘not happy’ and will be taking a really tough stance with her pals in the White House over revelations that Glasgow’s Prestwick Airport was used to ship bombs over to Israel. The complaint is to be issued because the US er, failed to ‘follow procedure’. Presumably, in order to use a UK airport to aid and abet an illegal invasion of another country, you need to fill in form AF237 - and the military commanders must have forgotten to do this – bloody paperwork! The 5,000 pound laser-guided bombs in question are supposed to be used to ‘bust’ the ‘sophisticated cave networks’ where bearded terrorists like to hide out, but are being utilised against civilian populations with devastating results. Not to worry though, a Foreign Office spokesman has promised to “look at our approach to these flights”, indicating, perhaps a move towards more convenient ticketless online booking.


SchNEWS warns all readers to keep you carbon footprint down, or a yeti hunter will come after you. Honest!


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