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

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SchNEWS 604, 28st September, 2007
Things Can Only Get Buddha - While there is a genuine movement kicking off out on the streets of Burma to get rid of the military junta, we look at how the West stands to gain from seeing it toppled and a neo-liberal pro-market 'democracy' taking its place. Plus - No Borders camp at Gatwick, visiting Palestinian activists join a Smash EDO noise demo, DSEi, Faslane 365 and more...

SchNEWS 603, 21st September, 2007
Iraq And A Hard Place - A mainstream research company are estimating that over a million have died in Iraq since 2003 due to the invasion - but it didn't get any publicity. Plus - No Borders Gatwick camp gets under way, protests continue in Ireland against Shell's proposed gas refinery at Rossport, site occupied in Wembley to prevent 'academy' school being built and more...

SchNEWS 602, 7th September, 2007
Aisle Be Damned - Supermarkets have stepped up the tide of greenwash, convincing consumers of their eco-credentials. Guess what SchNEWS finds that it's all complete garbage. Plus this week's Disarm DSEi anti-arms trade protest, a report back from popular uprisings in Oaxaca, Mexico, an update from a Palestinian town on Israel's apartheid wall, and more...

SchNEWS 601, 31th August, 2007
Tents Stand Off - It's been a hectic week in Brighton as Smash EDO and Sussex Police once again faced off during the Smash EDO action camp. Also the fight continues at Shell's refinery site at Bellanaboy in Mayo and more...

SchNEWS 600, 24th August, 2007
Climate of Fear
- Despite over-the-top policing during the Camp For Climate Action, there was an impressive array of autonomous direct action at various aviation and high-carbon emission targets around the country. Plus in this issue - digger diving gets serious at the Hill Of Tara in Ireland, a riot kicks off at a free party in Great Yarmouth when police seize the sound system and more...

SchNEWS 599, 14th August, 2007 Ground Control - Climate activists caught the Met's finest flat-footed on Saturday night as they pre-emptively seized land for the climate camp. Also undeterred by being the only group affected by the injunction the Plane Stupid crew have taken their objections to the aviation industry to the Airbus 'superjumbo' factory in North Wales, a protester has been given a 28-day sentence for refusing to pay a £750 fine, after arrest at Prestwick Airport, Scotland and more....

SchNEWS 598, 27th July, 2007 Airbusted Heathrow Airport slaps an injunction on climate change protesters in the lead-up to the Camp For Climate Action in two weeks at a site near Heathrow. Also Wiradjuri Aboriginal take action against toxic gold mine on their sacred sites, Gordon Brown announces new attacks on civil liberties in the UK, anti-arms-trade protest at Nottingham weapons factory, Nagasaki survivor arrested at Faslane and more....

SchNEWS 597, 20th July, 2007 Eire We Go Again Seven protesters against the motorway planned at the Hill Of Tara in Ireland were arrested on Weds 18th trying to stop diggers from illegally destroying the important archaeological site at the proposed Blundlestown interchange in the Tara/Skryne Valley. Also more on the resistance to Shell's proposed gas refinery and pipeline development in County Mayo, activists again managed to disrupt business at Agrexco Carmel in Middlesex and more....

SchNEWS 596, 13th July, 2007 Smother Earth So that's it - after years of denial (crucial years when a difference could perhaps have been made) global elites are ready to admit that climate change is a reality. Also a report from a British roads campaign veteran at the Hill Of Tara protest in Ireland, protecting one of the most important archaeological sites in the world from a motorway, over here, Herefordshire council are planning to tarmac over their own recently discovered henge and more....

SchNEWS 595, 6th July, 2007
Shells Angels
Major construction is scheduled to begin on the controversial Shell onshore gas refinery in County Mayo, Ireland within the next month. Also at The Hill Of Tara a huge ancient monument near Baronstown was razed to the ground by machinery this week, tax on using vegetable or plant oil as motor fuel has been slashed and more....

SchNEWS 594, 29nd June, 2007
Dancing on the CeilingTwo anti-war activists who scaled the well-trodden roof of Brighton arms dealers EDO MBM for a rooftop occupation were acquitted on a charge of Aggravated Trespass this Wednesday at Brighton magistrates. Also US-Australian war games were halted this week by a big hump back whale, the UK's first Tent State at Sussex Unversity, the Schnews 'Blair Charge Sheet' and more.....

Tony Benn remembers Peterloo
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What's Peterloo? - click here
Home | Friday 5th October 2007 | Issue 605



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Story Links: Parlia-ment-alCrap Arrest Of The Week In Grand Style | Pigged Farm | Diced ShamParty & Protest | Always A Crackling Read | Saving Their Bacon | Total Swines | Bangers & Smash | And Finally



“This is rather a ham-fisted attempt to prevent us from demonstrating. What they (the government and police) do is up to them. We will just ignore them and we have the moral and logical high-ground. I will be marching on Monday 8 October.” - Mark Thomas

Police forbid a march on the centre of government – Rangoon? Nope, London. While Gordon Brown reminds the world of our commitment to human rights and expresses his disgust at the treatment meted out to Burmese protestors, its a different story when it come to the overwrought mother of parliaments.

The previously studiously uncontroversial Stop the War Coalition has run up against the big protest clampdown. Their planned “Troops Out” march on October 8th from Trafalgar square to Parliament has been banned by the Met police. But they’re planning to march anyway.

- March In Defiance Of The Ban
Monday 8th October, 1 pm, Trafalgar Square, march to Parliament Square. Venerable greybeards Tony Benn and Walter Wolfgang will be leading the united defiance of celebrities and public alike.
* For more see

Usually STWC conducts totally legal demonstrations and has not previously lent its support to illegal direct action. On this occasion they were in negotiation with the police for some weeks beforehand and by cunningly apparently getting round the Public Order and SOCPA legislation by fully complying with it, the march appeared to have the police go ahead. Their marches, which tend to be of the ‘go from a set A to B, hear Tony Benn’ affairs, have been sanctioned and facilitated before by the police - in a marked contrast to heavy handed treatment of unauthorised events such as Sack Parliament (see SchNEWS 564). Pundits used to the Met’s usual attitude to protests were left slack-jawed at the minimal policing in evidence on the massive march in Feb 2003. In fact discussions between the organisers and the police included plans to neutralise anarchist elements, such as samba group Rhythms of Resistance.

However, last Friday in a room at New Scotland Yard, in a meeting with events co-ordinator Inspector Stuart Cornish – claiming to be acting on a “steer from upstairs”, he informed them that the march would not be allowed within one mile of parliament. In return the organisers were offered a static demo – and to their credit they walked out of the meeting.


To achieve this the cops dusted off the the 1839 Sessional Orders legislation, which allows the granting of orders to allow the free passage of MPs and peers into Parliament. The Act “ORDERED, That the Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis do take care that the passages through the streets leading to this House be kept free and open and that no obstruction be permitted to hinder the passage of Members to and from this House”. When this act was passed the greatest threat to the state was Chartism, a riotous movement demanding democratic freedom. What next? Public gatherings broken up under the 'Corn Laws'? The return of the ducking stool?

The Sessional orders do not actually confer any extra powers on the police, being merely a formal expression of parliament’s wishes. Those wishes being of course being that the people should in no way attempt to interfere with the business of their masters. But it is anticipated that police will make arrests under the usual Do What You’re Told Act if any attempt is made to breach the cordon around parliament.


For Armchair Intifada...

One student office temp cum work-top warrior has got a little more than he bargained for when, obviously bored with the inanity of the usual desktop decorations of toys, xxxxx, Britney Spears / Peter Andre calendars (delete as applicable), he decided to go for something a little edgier to the mindset of big business. His insurance firm was less than impressed at the small cotton patch with a peace dove and “Free Palestine” on it, a leaflet saying CatterKiller about the use of military bulldozers and a postcard saying “Boycott Israeli Goods.”

He swiftly lost his job, his one-man mission to bring down the international finance system from within seemingly over.

But no, a month later he received a knock from the Thought Police who arrested him for “Aggravated Racial Harassment”, searched his house and confiscated literature relating to the Israel Palestine conflict, then detained him for nine hours. He has now been bailed until October 20th.

Perhaps he’ll stick to “You don’t have to be crazy to work here... but it helps!” posters next time!

Faslane Big Blockade - tripod blocks road
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The Faslane naval base holds nuclear-armed Trident submarines, and since 1982 has had nuisance neighbours in the form of the Faslane peace camp. This Monday was the Big Blockade send-off for the year-long Faslane365 action and it went with a bang. After over 100 separate actions during the year by anti-war groups coming from all around the country and beyond, SchNEWS was wondering whether the total arrests would hit the 1000 mark on the last day, and we weren’t disappointed. During the year we began a Faslane365in365-o-meter, to track whether there was going to be 365 arrests in the year – with a prize to the 365th arrestee, which happened only three months into the campaign. (For the record we did actually meet him and he graciously refused any prize – we’ll never get rid of some of those old books!) So even we were obviously out of touch with current police peace protest arrest-rates.

On the day of action around a thousand people from across the UK and Europe descended on the main gates of the base. By 7am, the Northern gate was blockaded with protesters chaining bits of their bodies to the gates and others super-gluing themselves together and pouring paint over themselves (just to impede police). By 8.30am, the South gates were blocked preventing all road access to the base. By mid-morning the police response had kicked in with around 100 arrests, and at the day’s end they tallied an impressive 180.

There was also a roadblock including at tripod on the A814 to Garelochhead, leading to The Royal Naval Armament Depot (RNAD) at Coulport, Loch Long - where Trident nuclear missiles are stored. For those not arrested during the morning, the day continued at the North gate in a noisy fashion with all the usual demo theatrics like clowns, and live music powered by Rinky Dink. It ended at 3.30 with a closing ceremony.

With the Faslane365 arrests figure hovering around the 970 mark, by mid-morning the 1000 barrier was smashed, leading to a total of 1150 arrests during the year. Notching up an impressive average of over three arrests every single day for a whole year, it is claimed that the police bill for Faslane 365 has been over £5 million. A drop in the ocean next to Trident of course...

* See also

* Faslane Peace Camp -


Police raided the UK Animal Rights Gathering in Kent on Sunday. There was a heavy police presence throughout the gathering, culminating in a demand to enter the premises (an animal sanctuary). When this was predictably refused, they went away to get a warrant to search the farm for drugs. Given two hours warning the two hundred campers were ready and greeted the cops with video cameras. They even set out benches in a semi-circle so that onlookers could enjoy the farce in comfort. Needless to say the assembled plod walked away empty-handed.

* For other animal rights events see


Activists arrested at the DSEi arms fair for trying to get into the exhibition hall (see SchNEWS 602) have already their charges dropped. Around fifteen protestors were arrested, most were released without charge on the day. The remainder were charged with ‘tresspass with intent of disrupting lawful activity’ and were gearing themselves up for a political court case where they could argue that DSEi’s activities were illegal. (Co-incidentally shortly after the arrests a number companies exhibiting more legally dubious hardware were asked to leave the exhibition). It's no coincidence then that the London CPS deicided not to press ahead with such a potentially embarrassing court case.

* For more see


  • OCTOBER: 7th - ‘Stop Bombing Afghanistan’ walk to mark the 6th anniversary of the 2001 invasion. Meet 10am, St Ethelburga’s Centre for Reconciliation and Peace, 78 Bishopsgate, London EC2N 4AG. Tel: 0845 458 2564 or visit
  • 7th - New Roots Co-op is holding it’s annual open day at Moulsecoomb Allotments on the corner of Natal and Nesbitt Roads, Brighton. All welcome, dogs on leads please. Come and have a nosey and enjoy some of the produce that’ll be on show. New Roots (formerly Re-Evolution) is an organic producer with permaculture as the founding principle. 2-6pm
  • 9th - Stop Deporting Cameroonians! Anti-deportation, anti-immigration acts demonstration called by UK Cameroon Support Network (CSN). 12-2pm at UK Immigration Service, Sandford House, 41 Homer Road, Solihull, West Midlands B91 3RJ.
  • 13th - ‘Keep Space For Peace’ week protest - as part of the international actions called for by the Global Network Against Nuclear Weapons and Power in Space, the Campaign for the Accountability of American Bases (CAAB) is demonstrating at the American base at Menwith Hill. 12noon-4pmish at the main entrance, Menwith Hill, near Harrogate, North Yorkshire. For more info tel: 01423 884076, email: or visit
  • For full listings updated weekly see

Always a Crackling Read

It’s a big up to the Pork Bolter which has reached a decade in power as the authoritative voice of radical Worthing. Just to prove that the seaside town is anything but a boring place to be, this week’s issue has a bonus centrepage-spread overviewing 10 years of local activism. Each month the cheeky PB journos give us the low down on camp Titnore, corporate crime and police stupidity in and around the town - with the occasional scoop on which boozer provides the best late night pub activity.

* Check out the newsletter’s website at

Not fash, just Gordon
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So Gordon ‘man of the people’ Brown let slip on his Iraq visit a limited backwards advance from Iraq. Facing up the military reality of failure? A moral crusade to end war by newly- converted peacenik Gordo or a cynical attempt to run around making loads of popular promises before calling a snap election in attempt to get another 5 years without electoral threat? You decide! (probably on Nov 3rd apparently).

At least Brown didn’t hide his real position, also saying, “I am very proud of what our armed forces are achieving here ... We will discharge our obligations to the Iraqi people and to the international community and we will discharge our obligations to our armed forces, who are doing this difficult job.” A job not getting any easier, in so many ways for so many reasons...

Meanwhile, what are our erstwhile shoulder-to-shoulder chums the US up to? The Bush junta has just confirmed the US’s plans to really concrete in their presence on foreign soil... by building the world’s biggest embassy in Baghdad. The 104 acres site, surrounded by blast walls is a mere ten times the size of the embassy in Bejing and six times bigger than the whole UN complex in New York. Now that’s diplomacy! According to the publicity material the place will be completely ‘self-sufficient’. But don’t expect allotments and compost loos – they mean there’ll be ‘no need to rely on the Iraqis for anything’..


Despite reports that head of the military junta, General Than Shwe has agreed in principle to meet the pro-democracy NLD party leader Aung San Suu Kyi, the regime’s vicious backlash to the protests in Burma (See SchNEWS 604) continued this week, with state snatch squads raiding all over Rangoon. One account has ten thousand rounded up for interrogation and many thousands are reported as ‘disappeared’ – killed, detained for torture or destined for remote prisons. Many have tried to flee the city, as military vehicles were sent onto the streets complete with loudspeakers blaring: “We have photographs. We are going to make arrests.”

* A mass solidarity demo and a mass die-in has been called for today (5th) at London TOTAL Oil HQ (See SchNEWS 488 for why there) 8.30am-10am at 33 Cavendish Square, London, WC1. See

* For more about a similar action on Tuesday, see

* For more background about Burma see

* Read John Pilger’s book ‘Freedom Next Time’, about how corporate interests exert power over former authoritarian regimes -


After their action camp last month (See SchNEWS 601) SMASH EDO activists were back to their usual tricks. In the early hours of October 3rd, eight activists entered the grounds of bomb-builders EDO MBM, angered by the continued local presence of a company supplying parts for the war machines in Iraq and Palestine and Afghanistan to mention but three.

Activists scaled the fence at the crack of dawn and quickly managed to superglue all six entrances to the factory, making it impossible for employees to enter, shutting EDO down. Two campaigners locked on to the two main doors at the front of the building. True to form, there were a series of confrontations between the protesters and the onsite security goon. He attempted to chase those not locked-on out of the car park by driving at them in his car, pinning one against the metal fence. Guardian Guards seem notorious for placing aggressive thugs at EDO MBM, and this clown proved no exception. In the time it took for the police to show up he had assaulted and racially abused three of the protesters.

It didn’t take too long for the police to show up but were slowed down by an unexpected inconvenient barricade which appeared at the bottom of Home Farm Road. When they did eventually make it through to the factory, they began arresting activists, leaving just one locked to the entrance. But not before a baffled Paul Hills, the managing director, had felt he had no other option but to break into his own factory by smashing a window! After the fire brigade refused to attend the incident, police managed to unlock the last activist at 8.30am.

Cops then began to confiscate cameras, claiming that they needed the footage for evidence of criminal activities. When one cameraman struggled to hold onto his property he was also collared, taking the arrest count up to five. All re now bailed with charges pending.

Activists were informed at Hollingbury nick that EDO MBM had lost a lot through this ordeal, having to replace all locks on all entrances, a pane of glass for the window, and generally making losses as employees were unable to continue with their day’s important work. Just like any job it’s always nice to get some positive feedback on the work you do...

* For more see

...and finally...

Heightened paranoia over the ‘severe’ terrorist threat last week proved to be a recipe for a disaster – in one Soho street anyway. A funny smell set alarm bells ringing for disaster-primed locals who hit the panic button. The emergency services were summoned to a suspected chemical attack, leading to police sealing off the area for three hours. At least one office was evacuated. The fire crew arrived at ground zero only to find, instead of an Al-Qaeda cell, just a few bemused chefs from a Thai restaurant. They’d been preparing Nam Prik Pao, an eye-watering dip but hardly an explosive concoction which involves the rendering down of 3 kilos of chilli. Having neutralised the sauce of the evil plot, the terrorist threat in the area has since been downgraded to ‘caution: extra spicy’...


SchNEWS warns all readers - the hogs of war only tell you porky-pies. Honest!


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