SchNEWS 689, 4th September 2009
Common People? - The London Camp For Climate Action passes off this week largely without incident. The focus on the camp was more about about training than direct action, and some are questioning whether the climate camp is becoming too soft or theoretical... plus, Workers at the occupied Zanon ceramics factory in Argentina have won a court battle and now legally control the factory, Zippos Circus, an animal abusing circus, continues to see protests as it travels around the south coast of England, the DSEi Arms Fair – the world's largest arms fair – is back on next week at it's usual location, the eXcel Centre, Docklands, London, and more...

SchNEWS 688, 21st August 2009
Stock Horror at HLS - Under pressure from animal rights protesters, more investors pull out of Huntingdon Life Sciences, leaving it in a financially precarious position... plus, after Scotland and Wales earlier this month, the Camp For Climate Action moves towards a location somewhere in London, the BNP have their Red White And Blue festival in Derbyshire, but the far-right revellers were outnumbered by anti-fascist protesters, protesters get into Faslane Naval Base in Scotland, which has the nuclear-armed Trident submarines, and more...

SchNEWS 687, 14th August 2009
Fash Get the Brum Rush - A new grouping of far-right racists demonstrate in central Birmingham – and have their arse kicked by local anti-fascists... plus, a snapshot of what anti-fascists are up against on the mean streets of Moscow, the Vestas protests continue on the Isle Of Wight as workers continue their occupation, the Scottish Camp For Climate Action ends and the Welsh Climate Camp begin - both targetting the coal mining industry and it's climate impact, a 77-day long militant occupation by sacked workers at a Ssangyong car plant in South Korea ended this month with a dramatic raid by 300 police and 100 commandos, and more...

SchNEWS 686, 7th August 2009
Blowing in the Wind - Protests continue at the Vestas wind turbine factory on the Isle Of Wight, where sacked workers are occupying the factory, and the protest becomes national... plus, the Scottish Camp For Climate Action starts at the site of a current protest camp against open-cast coal mining at Mainshill near Glasgow, protesters end a week-long camp outside Highgate Farm in Lincolnshire, which breeds ferrets and rabbits for the vivisection industry, the murder of Russian human rights activist Natalia Estemirova in Chechnya last month causes us to look at the Russian-backed despotic regime in Chechnya, and more....

SchNEWS 685, 27th July 2009
SPECIAL REPORT - Big Green Gathering Shutdown - THE BIG GREEN GATHERING HAS BEEN SHUT DOWN BY POLICE!, clampdown in Calais on migrants trying to get to Britain, redundant workers at the Vestas wind turbine factory on Isle Of Wight occupy workplace in protest, repression in Iran continues, with protesters being killed by security forces and thousands detained, Liverpool BNP activist Peter Tierney is in court for violently attacking anti-fascist protesters, and more...

SchNEWS 684, 17th July 2009
Good Plan, 'Stan - As British soldiers are regularly returning dead from Afghanistan SchNEWS asks what is the broader deathtoll of this unwinnable war, and why are the US/UK military there anyway?... plus, fox hunters fail to get injunction placed on those monitoring their illegal activity, protesters in Britain demonstrate against Dow Chemicals, owner of Union Carbide and liable for the 1984 Bhopal chemical disaster, sacked French car part workers who are occupying their workplaces have rigged explosives and are threatening to blow it up, and more

SchNEWS 683, 10th July 2009
Bobbies on the Bleat - SchNEWS has cast our cynical eye over the HMIC (Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary) report about the policing of the G20 protests... plus, the biggest Chinese government massacre since Tiananmen Square, an update on the military coup in Honduras, Israeli warships board Free Gaza Movement boat on humanitarian mission, Rossport pirates attack Shell supply ship, and more...

SchNEWS 682, 3rd July 2009
Rumble in the Jungle - No Borders campaigners culminated their week long camp in Calais with a demonstration outside the city’s main port last Saturday... plus, an in depth look at this week's coup d'etat in Honduras, support still needed at anti-coal solidarity camp in Mainshill, Scotland, striking sweatshop workers are repressed in Bangladesh, a look at UK campaigns against forced deportation if refugees, and more...

SchNEWS 681, 26th June 2009
It's Just Not Cricket - The so-called civil war in Sri Lanka may be over with the defeat of the Tamil Tigers, but the suffering continues for the Tamil people... plus, the No Borders Camp kicks off at Calais, last weekend's summer solstice celebration at Stonehenge was subject to heavy policing, including an unmanned surveillance copter drone, helicopter, 300 stop-n-searches and 32 arrests, protesters on alert as the gas pipe laying ship arrives to begin work for the summer, and more...

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

Home | Friday 11th September 2009 | Issue 690



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Story Links : Dissin' The Dsei | Blades Out | Sent To Coventry | Nuke Kids On The Block | Hacked Off | Room Servers | Draxtic Action | And Finally



This week, between the 8th and 11th of September the Defence Services Equipment International Exhibition, the world’s largest arms fair, was held at East London’s ExCel Centre (see SchNEWS 689). There have been mass mobilisations against DSEi at the ExCel Centre since 1999, the largest being in 2003, and infamously in 2001 on the same day as 9-11. Over the years the Met have rolled out ever more repressive tactics – kettling, dodgy searches under the Terrorism Act and the usual Met favourite of trumped up arrests. Many oft nicked activists had vowed never to return to a DSEi mobilisation again, however this time round energies were spent in The City - against investors in the international arms trade rather than the usual pig fest at the ExCel Centre.

Fears of a continuation of the repressive policing of previous years meant that numbers were down. About 200 people met on Tuesday outside the RBS building in Aldgate and marched into The City - RBS are the biggest financier of the global arms trade. Next stop was Barclays, largest UK arms trade investor, where a banner was hung above London Wall proclaiming that “Barclay Invests in the Arms Trade”, and shoes were hurled Iraqi style at the building in disgust at their complicity in murder. More banner drops followed with HSBC and Legal and General exposed as arms trade investors.

As the march carried on folks started to feel something was missing - being constantly penned in and prevented from doing what they wanted. A handful of police were present but they were not intervening in the demo and were not filming overtly. This seemed, at first, to leave people feeling uncertain, but not for long.

When the crowd reached Legal and General, another large investor, messages were pasted to the building, more shoes were thrown and windows rattled. The demo moved to Gresham StreetDisarm where Lloyds staff, disturbed while eating sandwiches on the steps of the Head Office, were besieged by protesters calling for an end to arms trade investment.

BT Head office was then invaded by scores of activists carrying megaphones, and a reinforced banner carrying the tell-it-like-it-is message “Bomb Makers and Bankers, Murdering Wankers” - along with a sound system - as they poured through the revolving doors. BT hold £59 million worth of shares in the arms trade. Last stop was AXA, one of the largest institutional investors, which had its door kicked in, windows broken and was pelted with paint bombs.

Throughout all this the FIT were present. One FIT officer said at the beginning that they planned to ‘do nothing’ to interfere with the demo. They became increasingly twitchy as windows were smashed and buildings invaded but not a single arrest was made. Something about being at a demo en masse just a few hundred metres away from where their colleagues had publicly beaten to death Ian Tomlinson a few months back must’ve spooked them.

The police have since been on their PR-directed best behaviour of late, part of a media game aimed at keeping the reigns off the police. The result, however, was one of the most successful DSEi mobilisations ever.

So what next? This year it was clearly the right decision to mobilise in the City but maybe in 2011 a revitalised movement can pose a serious challenge to the delegates at DSEi?


Tuesday’s demo was the second mass demo this year to focus on companies investing in the arms trade. Smash EDO’s Mayday! Mayday! action saw thousands of people squaring up to Barclays and McDonalds, both investors in EDO-ITT (See SchNEWS 675). Since then anonymous pixies have glued up cash machines and smashed windows of banks investing in the arms trade on dozens of occasions in Brighton, Somerset and London. After Tuesday’s demo Sophie Williams, from Disarm DSEi said “Any damage caused pales into insignificance in comparison with the destruction UK weapons have caused worldwide. The only way to make these companies divest from the arms trade is to hit them economically, and today’s action is part of a growing movement of direct action against the dealers in death and the money behind them.”


Monday 7th September

Our friends from ITT Corporation organised a warm up conference to DSEi at the QE2 conference centre near Victoria. Before the conference started a campaigner from Catholic Worker daubed “Build Peace, Not War Machines” across the front door. A handful of protesters turned up and staged an angry and noisy demo outside the centre. Police made a half hearted attempt to move them into a protest pen and made empty threats of arrests under SOCPA. One lone activist shackled himself inside the pen and began a hunger strike for the duration of the fair. 

** Meanwhile, on the fourth plinth at Trafalgar square an installation called “Never mind art - disarm the arms trade!” was set up and activists made speeches in support of the EDO decommissioners (See SchNEWS 663).

Tuesday 8th September

Disarm DSEi held mass demo in The City (see previous report) ** Two were arrested when Catholic Worker poured red paint over the sign for ExCel and unfurled a banner saying “Forgive them father for they know not what they do”. ** Critical Mass from the ExCel Centre. ** Campaign Against the Arms Trade (CAAT) held demos at the ExCel Centre and UK Trade and Industry.

Wednesday 9th September

Activists held a noise demo at Custom House station just outside DSEi and disrupted the DLR.

** CAAT held a walking tour around arms dealers in the City of London.

** Noise demonstration held outside DSEi delegate’s hotels.

Thursday 10th September

An angry noise demo was held outside the doors of the Hilton Hotel in Park Lane where inside the DSEi delegates’ dinner was being held. Police issued a Section 14 order; people were moved away from the hotel and 10 arrests made for breach of Section 14. Looks like the police had had enough of their softly softly tactics.


* Support the EDO Decommissioners Week of Events – Brighton - 16th-26th October – see

* Launch of Target Brimar Campaign – October 17th - Brimar is a Manchester based arms company – see

* Stop the NATO Parliamentary Assembly – Edinburgh – November 13th-17th See

* For more info on the Anti-Militarist movement see

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Tension at the Vestas protest camp on the Isle Of Wight (See SchNEWS 688) has been ratcheted up this week after activists established a blockade to prevent the company from removing the remaining turbine blades and moulds used to make the blades, and shipping them over to the USA where they will continue production.

The police responded by storming into the camp on Wednesday (9th) and removing a concrete-filled tent being used to obstruct part of the exit route from the factory and confiscating a tripod that was nearly set up and ready to go. In the ensuing meleé one man was removed with a dispersal order while in a separate incident another activist was arrested after being harassed by security.

After this frustrating setback members from the campaign immediately went on the hunt for more materials to construct another tripod (and had a chance two-ships-in-the-night meeting with a police unit, who were luckily on another mission so gave them no trouble). The tripod was finally erected and occupied at dawn on Thursday (10th).

Taking the first shift was one of the original occupiers, who racked up 13 hours on his perch before handing over (in the process winning a bet with one of the security guards who had started a book on how long he would last – his evening’s beer money). When SchNEWS spoke to the protester yesterday afternoon he declared that he and the remaining nine ex-Vestas employees were “full of fight” and not going anywhere. When asked about the Vestas response he said “All we’ve had from Vestas is our P45s”.

Activists at the camp are still calling out for people to get down and support the blockade or just to attend one of their daily ‘High Tide Picnics’ (hosted by the infamous Jacky Wellies). A day of action, on the island and nationwide, has been scheduled for September 17th.

* See

Keywords: isle of wight, tripod, vestas
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Combining the oafish violence of football hooligans with the nutty, bent right-wing views of the BNP, beer gut aficionados the English Defence League once again returned to the streets of Birmingham last Saturday (5th) and were, once again, met by groups of local Asians, supported by anti-fascists. What followed was an afternoon of chanting, scuffling and missile throwing which ended in 90 arrests.

Having been banned from protesting in central shopping area the Bull Ring by the home secretary following last month’s confrontation (See SchNEWS 687), the action instead took place around New Street Station. As the anti-fascists confronted the EDL at every turn the afternoon unfolded in the style of an away game at Millwall with lots of posturing, grunted threats and minor violence before police blocked a majority of the EDL in a pub until buses arrived to move them to a new site to continue their ‘protest’.

In typically dimwitted fash-fashion, the thugs of the EDL were displaying exactly what kind of English values they stood for with a bit of mindless hooliganism - smashing up the seats and pissing on the buses they’d boarded. Meanwhile unbeknownst to the EDL, these buses were redirected to Coventry where they were held until after midnight. Having missed the last trains and buses they were then stuck there until the following morning.

A freelance journo on the scene told SchNEWS that there was a heavy police presence throughout the day, co-ordinated by FIT teams shipped in from London, but that they spent most of their time time documenting the press instead of monitoring the action.

* For an eye witness account see

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An anti-nuclear base camp has sprung up in the forests of Ranua in Finland where Areva, a multinational uranium mining corporation, has already started drilling. Despite Areva’s assurances to local people that they will not survey the area until they receive a claim permit from the Ministry of Work and Livelihood, two pipes have been discovered drilled into the ground which experts believe may be deep drilling holes. Due to the scant protection offered by Finnish Environmental Law, Areva can effectively legally start drilling with only the landowner’s permission which has already been secured.

The camp’s main purpose therefore is to monitor, report back and disrupt work while they wait for the Ministry’s official decision. In order to establish an effective public outreach programme and ensure the survival of the camp, more numbers are needed, right now. There is a call-out for people to join the Ranua Rescue Areva Mining Monitors (RRAMM) to help monitor the activities of Areva and provide a physical presence. Due to the location of the camp, which is situated near a lake within a forest on the edge of Areva’s huge prospecting claim area, use of a vehicle, preferably a van or a pick-up, is the most desperately sought item on their wish list. If you can help them please get in contact.

You can phone the camp on +358 40 365 2041 and book yourself on their calendar poll at

A press conference has been scheduled and a public meeting called for October 12-14.

Contact the camp at Check out and

Keywords: areva, finland, nuclear energy, uranium
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Police efforts to silence dissent outside the Oxford animal testing lab have seen a freelance journo and NUJ member, David Palmer, arrested last Thursday at the regular demo outside the lab, with all of his recording and camera equipment seized.

Despite the fact that the campaign to prevent the building of the lab on South Parks Road, Oxford was unsuccessful and the Thames Valley Police’s promise to ‘wage a dirty war’ against protesters was exposed (see SchNEWS 590) – an injunction (drafted by SchNEWS favourite Timothy Lawson Cruttenden) controlling the protests is still in force.
David inadvertently wandered into an area prohibited under the terms of the injunction. He was warned to leave by university staff and did so immediately. But this wasn’t enough for the cops however, who jumped on him mob-handed and arrested him for harassment.

I spent around six hours in a cell at Oxford police station before being interviewed. During the course of the interview, I was informed that my video camera and mobile phone were going to be retained and that I’d be questioned about material found on them at a later date. I pointed out to the interviewing officer (on tape) that such treatment of a journalist was completely illegal; at this point the police tried to say my press cards were fraudulent!

I insisted the police ring the 24hr NUJ verification number on the back of my press card, but they refused to do so and said they’d ring the number the following morning (Friday) and that I’d hear from them after that

David was not released from custody until shortly after midnight, nine hours after his arrest.
* See

Keywords: animal rights, david palmer, nuj, oxford, timothy lawson cruttenden
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The case has been dropped against a Sheffield IT worker who was raided, arrested and had a computer server confiscated in January this year (See SchNEWS 663). The server was apparently being used by Indymedia, and the police warrant was to track down the poster of a comment on Manchester Indymedia giving the home address of the judge involved in jailing some SHAC animal rights defendants (See also SchNEWS 663).

Despite being told that Indymedia does not log the IP addresses of any of its contributors, the cops nonetheless targeted this particular, albeit arbitrary, server. The man running it didn’t even have the passwords to access the server, but yet he was arrested under suspicion of offences including the rather Orwellian “encouraging or assisting an offence believing it will be committed”. It marked the first recorded use of broad new powers granted by the Serious Crime Act 2007. See

* Operation Liberation – National demonstration outside Highgate Farm in Lincolnshire, who breed rabbits and ferrets for HLS and other labs. Saturday 26th September, starts 12 noon, see

Keywords: indymedia, serious crime act, shac
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The Drax 29 (See SchNEWS 683) were sentenced last week (Friday 4th) with 21 of the original group being given a 12 month conditional discharge, five being given 60 hours community service, and three ordered to pay legal costs and £1,500 compensation.

The campaigners were hoping to be acquitted under the same conditions as the Kingsnorth 6 (See SchNEWS 646), but the judge was less sympathetic, refusing to allow arguments based on the fact they were preventing the greater crime of carbon pollution.


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The police got in a flap recently in Dover when a woman was pulled over for driving with a giant parrot on her shoulder. After they discovered she was in fact banned from driving she was arrested, and a junior policeman was given the job of driving her van to the depot with the three foot long blue and gold macaw for company.

However this particular copper found out just how low on the pecking order he was on the force, having been given a big bird to babysit. Clearly pissed off that his keeper (and favourite shoulder) had been nicked, the macaw - who the police now know to be called Chip - spent the journey violently attacking him and sitting on the steering wheel biting chips out of his fingers.

As it turns out, once Chip was back at the station, the police discovered they were brushing with stardom, ‘cos he’d starred alongside Johnny Depp in the 2003 film Pirates Of The Caribbean (Chips agent probably gets him a lot of pirate work). Chief Superintendent Steve Masters of Kent police said “It was a bit of surprise I must admit to end up with a celebrity on our hands.”

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SchNEWS warns all readers, don’t _____ or _____ _____ and then we’ll save the world from _________ (make up your own disclaimer this week). Honest.



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.

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