Freethinkeruk’s Weblog

UK Political weblog

Archive for the tag “G20”

Police Brutality Rules OK

A police officer at the G20 summit who, without any provocation at all, violently pushes over a newspaper seller, Ian Tomlinson, who was simply walking home and who then died just minutes later is not to face any charges at all. See report.

Director of Public Prosecutions Keir Starmer said “After a thorough and careful review of the evidence, the CPS has decided that there is no realistic prospects of a conviction against the police officer in question for any offence arising from the matter investigated and that no charges should be brought against him.”

Although there is still some medical dispute over what actually was the cause of death of Mr Tomlinson would any reasonable person believe that it was just chance that he died a few minutes after being shoved to the ground. Even if we assume that he would have died at that moment anyway, there is still grounds surely for a charge of assault. This decision gives the green light to police that they can do what the hell they like and get away with it.

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Police Violence – nothing new

We are all, I’m sure, shocked by the police violence at the G20 demonstrations. We saw Ian Tomlinson walking home from work with his hands in his pockets and being struck from behind with a baton and then violently pushed to the ground by a balaclava wearing police officer. He subsequently died, believed at first to be from a heart attack and now from internal bleeding. The actual cause of his death is yet to be determined with accuracy but there can only be a little doubt that the police action at least contributed to his demise.

Of course there is outrage but this is nothing new; what is new is the almost universal possession of camera/phone/video recorders. In his younger days freethinkeruk witnessed many acts of police violence whilst he was engaged in non violent peace demonstrations. A close friend, one of the original Greenham Common Women, was part of a ‘sit-in’ in Parliament over the introduction of Cruise Missiles. Refusing to leave (of course) each of her legs was gripped by a policeman and she was dragged down a long flight of stone steps on her back and dropped outside. She was over 70 years of age, almost her entire body was bruised and she could barely walk for over two weeks.

Nothing new, nothing done about it but with modern technology by way of small video cameras gathering evidence, perhaps something will be done. I won’t hold my breath though and I would advise you not to hold yours.

G20 March

_45611601_g20protest_gettyToday at the G20 march in London the police estimate 35,000 people braved the cold winds and warnings that there might be ‘trouble’ to make clear what the people want from this meeting. By the way, going from my experience of marching with CND you can probably double that number.

Various groups issued statements and the most impressive for me was the one issued by ‘The British Muslim Initiative’ which I am happy to copy below. It is clear, precise and encompasses all the wishes expressed by the other groups.

“While the world looks with horror at the hundreds of billions of pounds being thrown at shoddy financial establishments to bail them out and to cover for huge executive bonuses, very little mention is made of the hundreds of billions that continue to be pumped into the global war machine that claims thousands of lives every day.

“Unless occupation in all its forms is seen as a repugnant manifestation of human greed and desire to over-power… and unless we see to it that poverty, disease, illiteracy and social injustice are properly and responsibly addressed, we will never be able to resolve the crisis that engulfs the world through the failure of its major financial policies and institutions.”

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