OF MASS DISTRACTION
They know we own their country. We own their airspace...
We dictate the way they live and talk. And thats whats
great about America right now. Its a good thing, especially
when theres a lot of oil out there we need. - U.S. Brig.
General William Looney (Interview Washington Post 1999)
While the unresolved conflict with Iraq provides the immediate
justification, the need for a substantial American force presence
in the Gulf transcends the issue of the regime of Saddam Hussein.
- Washington think-tank report, September 2000
The first world war of the 21st century is already underway. Bush
and the oilmen who run his government have given orders to make
the oilfields of the Middle East safe for America. The US military
are deploying their unimaginably powerful flotilla of death against
Iraq, a country they have been bombing and denying medicine to for
over 10 years. The corporate media are spinning their lies and whipping
up war fever in exactly the way they always do. With its overwhelming
military superiority, and without the Soviet Union or any other
competing superpower to restrain its ambitions of world domination,
the United States is not even pretending to conform to international
law. It is left to Blair, like a gangsters shiny-suited lawyer,
to come up with pseudo-legal justifications for the violence thats
already been agreed on. Capitalism doesnt get much more naked
For the vast majority of humanity its perfectly clear what
the United States is doing. The most powerful nation on earth, and
capitalism in general, is totally dependent on oil to keep it running
- and most of that oil is in the Middle East. Since 1945, the US
has armed and relied on puppet Arab regimes like Saudi Arabia to
ensure the cheap oil has kept flowing for the Wests ecologically
suicidal way of life. It has armed the Israeli State to terrorise
its Arab neighbours and ensure that the people of the potentially
richest region in the world (the Middle East) are kept in poverty.
Iraq has the second largest oil reserves after Saudi Arabia, and
for years Saddam Hussein was given western support to keep it flowing.
For years, Bush Senior gave Saddam loans and sold him advanced technology
with clear applications for weapons of mass destruction (WMD). Britain
was still authorising export of military equipment and radioactive
materials to Iraq even after Iraq invaded Kuwait. Iraq has been
so important to the US that Saddam was able to get away with attacking
a US naval vessel, the USS Stark, at the cost of dozens of American
lives without any comeback.
But things are changing. The level of oppression in the Arab world
is so great that capitalism fears popular uprisings in the region
will overthrow its puppet regimes and threaten its oil supplies.
Israel has been armed to the teeth but has been unable to defeat
the risen Palestinian people. The Saudi Royal family have been bankrolled
to maintain their brutal regime but popular opposition to their
rule is growing. The oilmen in the White House live in fear of being
unable to control a region they have become so dependent on. Direct
military intervention, shrouded by a thick layer of propaganda for
the public, has become the preferred tactic for the new century.
Saddam is, of course, a brutal dictator - like Suharto, Pinochet,
and all the others the US has payrolled. But the excuse for invasion,
that he may have weapons of mass destruction and be a danger to
his neighbours and others, is clearly just that - an excuse. The
terrorist state of Israel has 200 nuclear weapons targetted at Arab
capitals. It has illegally occupied Palestine for 35 years and breached
dozens of United Nations resolutions yet it wouldnt
exist without US support. When Saddam invaded Iran and gassed Kurds,
the West just made money out of it, because its strategic interests
were not threatened. The terrorist attacks of September 11th were
carried out by an organisation payrolled not by Saddam Hussein but
by the United States itself to fight its war against the Soviet
Union in the 1980s. Anyone who thinks this new war will be a war
to make the world a safer place just hasnt been paying much
The vast majority of humanity is against this war. If the United
Nations votes to support it, it will only be because Washington
has bullied, bribed or terrorised poorer countries into supporting
its plans. In the US, millions oppose Bushs imperialism. In
Britain, despite Labour and Tory support for Bush and the usual
media bullshit, half the population is against the war. If we wanna
put a spoke in the wheel of capitalisms war machine, weve
got a lot of friends.
But we wont achieve anything unless we really make a noise.
When Blair gave a warmongering speech to the Trade Union Congress
last month, he wasnt even heckled this pathetic response
allowed Blair to appear statesmanlike and led directly to increased
public support for the war in the following week. If even one person
had stood up and refused to shut up it would have resonated around
the world but no one did. We wont oppose this war effectively
with that sort of cowardice.
It wont be union leaders or paper sellers or organisers
that will stop this war. It will be ordinary, angry, active people
us, you, your neighbours, your mates taking direct
action. Stopping high streets at rush hour. Shutting down government
and military buildings. Having sit down protests on marches instead
of moving on whenever the police tell us to. As Mukhtar Dai of the
Birmingham South Asian Alliance said recently, If it means
disruption by our people who work in various service industries
that will happen. People working in taxis and buses will stop work
and there should also be strikes in factories. As even one
ex-Labour MP said The moment the bombing of Iraq begins we
should stop for one hour. We should remember the women of Baghdad
who will be widows, the children who will become orphans. Ive
never said this before. Non-violent resistance to the government
will show they cannot claim to do this in our name. We should stop
the buses, the trains, the schools. Everyone here should raise the
threat of war in their schools, places of worship, where they work
& live. We could be facing a Third World war triggered by stupid
|Over a thousand people have signed a Pledge of Resistance,
committing themselves to taking part in acts of nonviolent civil
disobedience should Iraq - or any other country - be attacked
in the course of the War on Terrorism. Hundreds
more have pledged to support them.
Sign the Pledge on-line at www.justicenotvengeance.org
or call 0845 4582564. Also check their website out for a list
of regular anti-war protests across the country.
Stop the War, Stop the City: direct action against the war in
Brighton. Meet the day after ground troops enter Iraq. Churchill
Square, 5.30pm bring pots and pans to bang for rough music.
Make your voice heard.
Arrest of the Week
For going to the wrong meeting! Last month a photographer,
Stalingrad ONeill, returning from a Troops Out Conference
in Belfast was detained by police for two hours under the Prevention
of Terrorism Act and had his camera seized and his documents taken
and copied. www.nuj.org.uk
|Reproduced here are a selection of excerpts
from the diary of a British activist in Palestine, who has spent
the past two months working with the International Solidarity
Movement (ISM) and other groups, to monitor the conditions of
life for Palestinians living under the occupation and to offer
physical and moral support.
Ive been in Askar refugee camp, Nablus for the past eleven
days now. Four of us internationals (our numbers here are TINY now,
we really need more people) travelled up here after completing our
training as official ISM volunteers. Official in that
you have to sign a contract committing yourself to no drugs, alcohol,
violence - that includes NO stone throwing at the soldiers Even
if the kids are all bang on it and youre standing in
literally piles of stones: hand-sized, hard, easily reached
Our main co-ordinator for the training was a small, earnest Japanese
woman named Maki. As we are going to be staying in the houses of
local Palestinians - mainly the homes of the families of suicide
bombers and martyrs which are under threat of revenge attacks -
usually a total bulldozing, we were taken through the dos
and donts of Palestinian culture: dont sit with your
leg up at a right angle , crossed over your knee - showing the bottom
of your foot is considered very disrespectful. If you bring a gift
to the family - make sure its never bread - they will think
you think they havent even got enough cash for bread and are
destitute - better to make it chocolates and coffee and then give
it very matter-of-fact, dont make a song and dance about it,
otherwise you might embarass the family; give the gift to the father
of the house; no low-cut tops, vests or shorts; and do not kiss
or touch men in public.
We also get an introduction to the politics and roots of ISM. The
first ever ISM action, December 2000 saw locals and internationals
march up to an Israeli Military base, walk straight past the soldiers
guarding it, march raucously through, banners and Palestinian flags
aloft, and up to the top where they took down the Israeli flag and
raised the Green, White, Black and Red. Thats quite an achievement
in an occupied police state. The Israeli media have tried to discredit
the ISM by saying its full of anarchists and communists. Everyone
from Anarchist Youth Network UK people, Wombles, huge Ya Basta!
Italy contingents, comedian Jeremy Hardy, and McDonalds smashing,
GM crop-torching farmer Jose Bove have come out on ISM missions.
The most interesting part of the training is handling the various
projectiles the Israeli Army is likely to shoot at us
passing round some weighty sound bomb shells, tear gas canisters,
rubber bullets (rubber-coated steel balls), sharp pointed M16 bullets,
Uzi bullets, and tank shells, Maki adopts a very stern, serious
voice. We pay attention. What you will see here is very, very
depressing. Many people feel very upset by what they see. You may
get beaten or shot. You may see your friends get shot and Palestinian
people shot or beaten very, very badly. You may need counselling
after this [nods up and down]. Yes. And the counselling, it might
work. [nod, nod] It might work.
Since the curfew was imposed, Nablus residents (numbering around
150,000 - making it the largest city in the West Bank outside of
Jerusalem) have been allowed to leave their homes for an average
of four hours a week. The lifting of the curfew is erratic and unpredictable.
It was lifted for the first day of school just last week (Aug 31)
but then re-imposed again, and hasnt been lifted since. Children
are unable to get to school. Its a problem for them and their
parents. A similar tactic of intellectually impoverishing whole
generations was adopted by the South African apartheid regime. Demonising
those living under an internal colonialism as inherently backward,
retarded, and unmanageable, the state attempts to make this image
a reality through the routine prevention and denial of education.
The Israeli Defence Force(IDF) has also occupied the homes of those
unlucky enough to live on the outskirts of camps, who are positioned
at good vantage points for snipers and provide key locations for
military operation launches. One such family is the Alar Samfeh
family, living on the edge of Askar. The house was forcibly occupied
by soldiers in June to be used as a make-shift base for terrestrial
operations in the area. The 19 people living in the home were prevented
from leaving and as a result lost their livelihoods - builders,
land surveyors- for the past three months. During the occupation,
if the father of the family wanted to move from one part of the
house to another he was forcibly blindfolded. Soldiers destroyed
chairs, tables and a music system, and towels and linen were regularly
used to clean oily guns.
Tank Dust Lunch - September 2nd
All us Internationals staying with families in Balata, Askar, New
Askar and Old Nablus join local Palestinian activists organising
a demonstration with women and children to deliver food to the Alar
Samfeh family. The idea is to march from the Askar Mosque, out to
the house (only a 20 minute walk) and have a picnic outside the
house/military base, and try if possible to deliver food to the
family. We bring 100 falafel, houmous and salad pittas for the kids.
The women from the Askar community womens centre come too
- they control the megaphone, and the kids who are yip yipping around,
all excited and carrying the placards we made last night: Zolnierze
WON, Dzieci do Szkoly - Soldiers OUT, Children Back to School
(Polish), Japanese peace symbols, the word peace in Arabic and many
others. There are about 200 of us. We manage to get as far as the
first intersection before the house when the sound of a tank begins
to grind against our ears. All of us internationals (about 10) are
at the front holding hands, to act as a barrier between the soldiers
and the kids.
We brace ourselves for the tank. It comes roaring up to us, stops,
spins its barrel round and round and then points it squarely at
us. It then begins to rotate its entire body in circles churning
up dust and spewing out bilious clouds of carbon monoxide. It disappears
in its own thick grey exhaust. People cover their mouths with their
t-shirts, turn away, cover their eyes, cough and splutter, but all
stand firm. It eventually stops, gradually reappearing as the noxious
fumes clear. The military plod turn up in a jeep. Negotiators, an
international and a Palestinian, step straight up. We cant
go to the occupied house. We end up staying where we are and eating
the falafels while kids take turns on the megaphone - singing
freedom songs, shouting out demands, slinging the odd stone. We
chant along to. Mur-der-ers! Mur-der-ers!
Let the child-ren go to sch-ool!
We dont retreat, we just all take the decision that well
go. Although we didnt make it to the house, the kids are jubilant
We werent even supposed to stay at the intersection, let alone
sit down and have a picnic. Everybody agrees that the demo was a
great success. People have barely left their houses for months,
let alone taken back their streets collectively and had the chance
to give the soldiers a piece of their minds.
A military checkpoint has been in operation opposite Mukhata
the Palestinian Authority prison in Nablus that was destroyed by
the IDF - for nine days now. A tank and Armoured Personnel stand
at the dust-bowl junction between Old Nablus and the Ballata refugee
camp. Directly behind the checkpoint are three blocks of flats and
a number of homes nestled into Askar Mountain. Checkpoints are crucial
to IDF (Israeli Defence Force - Israeli Army) operations in the
Palestinian territories. They are the lynchpins of the occupation.
Checkpoints curtail all movement. Daily tasks and activities are
criminalised or made nearly impossible by endless checks and searches.
According to the IDF, the searches are necessary to prevent terrorists
moving weapons around. One suicide bomb-belt was found - in front
of much media, this year. No other armaments have been reported
since. Meanwhile, over 80 people have died since the second intifada
began, after being held up at checkpoints and prevented from accessing
essential medical attention: cancer patients, dialysis patients,
women giving birth, those injured by Israeli fire, etc. Likewise,
children have been able to go to school for only one day since the
new term started: August 31. Normally, during the occupation, they
have had nowhere to go, and no education, although work is being
done to set up schooling spaces in the refugee camps. The economy
in Nablus has ground to a halt. Once the industrial heartland of
the Palestinian territories it is now a daily ghost-town. Many people
cannot go to work, cannot earn money, cannot obtain medicine or
groceries, and can barely feed their families. This applies more
stringently to the people forced to actually live amongst Israeli
soldiers whove set up camp, inside their homes, using them
as look-out points, human shields and operations bases, plus the
people who have the soldiers on their doorstep, such as those living
above the checkpoint at Mukhata.
Wed been doing checkpoint-watch every day there for the past
nine days, monitoring the soldiers activities. Children from
the surrounding area regularly gather by the wrecked prison to throw
rocks (Plenty of them around - the IDF regularly makes roadblocks
using Caterpillar and local Palestinian bulldozers. Roads are simply
cracked open, dug up, and rock and cement piled up into mini mountains.)
Its a depressing ritual. The kids detest the occupation, they
are oppressed daily by Israeli soldiers. The soldiers regularly
shoot at children. I got a taste of this last week, whilst I was
hanging out with the stone-throwing streetfighter kids. An Israeli
commander and his colleague were using the exhaust fumes of an advancing
tank as cover to get closer to the kids, all young raggedy boys
aged 10-17. As the tank pulled back up to its position in front
of the flats, the kids pointed wildly to a white square building
in between the Mukhata and the checkpoint. Soldiers, soldiers
they shouted, pointing at the white building. I know I know,
I said, pointing up at the checkpoint. No No No! (cue
sound of machinegun fire and more manic pointing at the white building).
It was only then that I realised what they were doing. They opened
fire, and we ducked behind a trench of rubble. The kids ran to hide
behind some broken rocks. I got up and ran over to them. They were
taking aim. I direct my question at the commander - a young, good-looking
Israeli. Youre not really going to shoot those....
FUCK OFF. Its a curt acid command. Oh right,
so, tell me, how many kids have you killed in your service?
His response was a round of ear-searing rapid fire at the scattering
kids. He put the gun down, keeping his gaze trained straight ahead,
and said 27.
A demonstration is organised by ISM volunteers and local block residents
against the checkpoint. The idea is to reclaim the area in front
of the flats and have children play games, draw posters and generally
have a laugh as an act of resistance to the occupation. Its
a way of showing kids that there are alternative forms of resistance
to the usual stone-chucking ritual, and its good to flummox
the soldiers. The ones on shift today are the same lot which policed
our last kids demo to the occupied house. As kids tried to
gather for the demo outside before we all came up they were shooting
at them. Only yesterday they were firing intimidation shots at us.
Before we even start the tanks barrel is trained squarely
at us. Around 100 kids turn up, tentatively at first, holding the
placards we drew together yesterday. They chant at the soldiers.
They are all over the shop but theyre enjoying their chance
to vent their frustration, as are the adults present. Demonstrations
here are pretty much non-existent - how do you collectively protest
against a military curfew? The presence of internationals is one
of the only ways collective acts of civil disobedience can take
place. The soldiers have orders not to shoot us. Palestinian civilians,
yes. Internationals, no. Bad PR.
Following a bout of shouting and general fist-shaking, we have a
drawing and painting session and a plastic sack race. The kids hop,
leap and wriggle in white plastic sacks, whipping up dust and getting
breathless with exertion. We join in too. Everybody is clapping
and laughing and the atmosphere is festive. Neighbours bring us
out trays laden with tiny china cups of Arabic coffee and glasses
of sweet tea - its surreal, sipping tea at an impromptu kids
sports day amidst swirling clouds of grey dust, under the gun barrel
gaze of a forbidding Israeli tank, and soldiers standing around
armed to the hilt. But were having a laugh
Baha is an energetic, vibrant local kid, 14 years-old, with
twinkly green eyes, all mush mushkele - No Problems,
and as capable as an adult, looking after international activists
staying in the old city by doubling up as guide and mediator between
hostile kids and us. He takes time out to explain who we are and
why were in their town when our governments are funding the
We go out on the tank-hunt. Baha in tow. Its the usual. The
APC and tank out on curfew patrol. We stay back at a street corner
on our way into the old city, a warren of sandy big-rocked houses,
archways, and piles of rubble (bulldozed ex-homes, factories, workshops).
The April attack saw 25,000 soldiers, approx. 400 tanks, and multiple
apache rocket-fire hit the city and surrounding camps. The 4th strongest
army on the planet doesnt fuck about when it goes in for the
kill. 87 Nablus residents were slaughtered within 4 days. Over 200
people were used as human shields.
Back to the present...The APC soldier gets on his phone. Nablus
was declared a closed military zone about an hour ago. We could
be nicked and dumped in Tel Aviv or deported. Whatever. We stay
put. Kids pelt the APC with stones, a couple, chucked over from
behind the safety of a wall, clop the soldier on the top. He responds
with a round of live ammo. A family wants to cross the road, right
in front of the tanks line of fire. Theyre in a hurry
and looking fraught, mother father, and four kids. Baha helps them
across. We rush up to be in front of him and them at once. Bahas
brave, just goes straight across, head-on, by their sides, defiant.
Baha knows the city like the back of his hand. In the aftermath
of the April incursion he was one of the most plucky volunteers,
clearing rubble, helping the sick.
We make our way down the street to where we expect the APC and Tank
to be but it seems like theyve rumbled off. Just curfew enforcement
we think. No big deal. Later well find out that its
illegal for the Israel Army to use anything stronger than teargas
to enforce curfew. Definitely not live ammo. They do what they want
anyway though. The entire occupation is illegal under the Oslo Accords,
The Geneva Convention, multiple United Nations directives etc.
We get a call
the tank and APC are outside. We decide to just
check out what theyre doing. As we make our way down the road
we hear the sound of the two vehicles whurring towards us. Its
blazing hot. The street is clear at this point. Nothing is being
thrown. I see the soldier in the APC take aim. I think its
with his M16 but it could be the mounted gun. Im not afraid.
Guns are constantly being pointed at Palestinians in the territories
- at their backs, in their faces, up at their windows, from the
middle of the street, from the mountains. A shot rings out, whizzes
straight past me. I feel the air rush and duck down instinctively.
FUCK that was so close, I say, turning round. is...Oh
my God. Baha is lying on his back in the porchway of a closed
shop. Blood is blooming from the right side of his chest. His eyes
are bulged back in shock. A Palestinian man is instantly above him,
pumping his chest with short sharp thrusts of his crossed hands.
Blood is welling up in Bahas mouth, flowing freely, it streams
fast from his nose, his ear. Turn his head, turn his head,
hes going to choke I yell. Its too late though.
We all know
The examining doctor at El Ethad Hospital said that the massive
internal damage caused by the dumdum bullet was consistent
with an intentional kill. Dumdums explode and fragment on
impact causing maximum multiple injuries.
The Israeli army initially stated that Baha was carrying a bomb
at the time of his assassination. This is not true. The statement
then changed to accuse Baha of carrying a molotov cocktail. This
was supposed to have exploded in his hand. Setting him on fire and
killing him. It was his fault. This is what the IDF
said about the 17 year old boy they shot in the head in Balata the
night before. He died when the ambulance carrying him was refused
entry through a checkpoint to the hospital. They said he killed
himself, shot himself. This a common statement released after the
Army murders people here. All armies and police do it. Blame and
demonise the victim. Here, its because theyre
terrorists. 328 children have been murdered by the Israeli
army or armed settlers since September 2000.
This (very edited) version was sent by an activist working for the
International SM in Palestine. More people are desperately needed.
Since the beginning of the second Intifada, people having been going
to Palestine under the banner of the International Solidarity Movement
(ISM). The ISM provide human shields against Israeli military crimes,
break curfews to provide food and medical supplies, protest against
Israeli tank blockades, and dismantle checkpoints and roadblocks
and this October they are looking for people to help pick
In the past two years hundreds of thousands of Palestinian trees
have been bulldozed, uprooted or set ablaze by Israeli soldiers
and settlers - 200,000 of these olive trees. As the ISM point out
Olive trees are a symbol of the life of the Palestinian, and
their destruction by Israeli forces is an attempt to de-root the
Palestinians from their land. The economic impact of Israeli policies
on the olive sector has been massive - over 10 million dollars lost
to damage in the past two years, and millions more due to Israels
barring farmers from their land. And these policies are designed
to have impact not just now, but for years to come - olive trees
produce for generations. This year we are calling on you to join
us for the olive harvest in Palestine.
To get involved 07817 554 814 www.ism-london.org/
- Saturday 28th Stop the War, Dont Attack Iraq Demo. Huge
anti-war demonstration meeting at the Embankment @ 1pm then going
to Hyde Park. www.stopwar.org.uk
Buses from Brighton 01273 502241. Join the Anti-capitalist Bloc:
Meet at Cleopatras needle on the Embankment 1pm. firstname.lastname@example.org
Or join the SchNEWS Bloc Meet 11am Brighton Station and
help us hand out these bloody newsletters.
- A Peace Camp has been set up outside the Imperial museum in
London. 07986 465552.
- Sunday 6 Oct, No Nukes, No War action at USAF Lakenheath 11am
- 3pm, A1065, near Thetford. Lakenheath is the main American tactical
airbase in Europe, armed with nuclear weapons and hosting the
48th Fighter Wing of the U.S.A.F. This wing has been heavily involved
in attacks on Iraq in the past, including campaigns from 1991
to 1994 and 1999. There are around 30 tactical nuclear weapons
deployed at Lakenheath, the last remaining American nuclear weapons
in Britain. These bombs each have a maximum explosive yield of
80 kilotons. The Hiroshima bomb had a 13 kiloton yield. 01508-550446
- 6th October Protest against war with Iraq, Southsea Common,
Portsmouth 3pm 023 9229 3673
- Scrap Trident Demo, 12th October, 12 noon Plymouth Hoe www.cnduk.org
- For other anti war events check the SchNEWS party and protest
bit on our website.
For those of you wanting to take direct action against the war,
heres a few resources we thought you might find useful:
- For the addresses of all 123 Army and Navy Recruitment Offices
in the UK visit: www.army.mod.uk/careers/recruit_office/a_z_results.htm#a
- For addresses of the MoD Bases in the UK, listed by area: www.100megsfree4.com/farshores/ukufobas.htm
- Addresses and maps of US Military Bases world-wide: www.globemaster.de/regbases.html
- The Defence Procurement Agency proclaim, Our mission:
To Equip the Armed Forces. Their website lists their projects
to design and build equipment for the Army, Navy and Air Force.
Follow the links to find out which company is building what: www.mod.uk/dpa/projects/index.htm
Stuff to get you going:
- Get hold of the CD The Fire This Time Deconstructing
the Gulf War and revealing the devastating effect of sanctions
on Iraq www.firethistime.org
- Hidden Wars of Desert Storm Essential viewing for
anyone wanting to understand issues such as Oil, weapons inspectors,
depleted uranium, Gulf War Syndrome and why America is now including
Iraq in its so called War on Terrorism. www.Cultureshop.org
- A new tune The Evil Plans of George W Bush IIIrd
has just been released under Copyleft license so people can copy
it, give it out, play it out and remix it as long as they give
Patients at Salisbury hospital are being asked to do their bit
for the war effort by consenting to donate their surplus skin
after surgery, to the notorious Porton Down defence
research establishment in Wiltshire. Early last year the hospital
was forced to stop supplying skin to Porton Down after it was revealed
that it was being sold without patients knowledge. The Defence Evaluation
and Research Agency (DERA) has now requested that the supplies are
reinstated for their essential research into defences against
chemical warfare agents, the patients consent though will
now be required.
The highly secretive Porton Down establishment has carried out the
worlds longest-running programme of chemical and biological
experiments on humans and animals. Officials have always claimed
that the tests are for purely defensive purposes - cos we is the
nice guys - honest!.
Theres a day of action against immigration detention and
deportation and racist border controls at 10am, 19th October outside
Dover Immigration detention centre, The Citadel,Western Heights,
Dover. Following on from the demo some of the protesters are crossing
over the channel to the Sangatte detention centre to show solidarity
with refugees there. Bring yer passport if you want to go. The
closure of Sangatte and the widespread incarceration of innocent
people, men,women and children in prisons are actions of politicians
that do not have respect for human life. It is up to us to ensure
that refugees are given a voice until they have a chance to recover
enough to tell us their stories themselves and to attempt to ensure
they are treated with as much respect or dignity as we would hope
- Imagine an area bigger than Brighton and Hove closed to traffic;
Brussels managed it last Sunday and shut 160 square kilometres
to traffic during International Car Free Day. 1,400 cities
around Europe also took part. www.carbusters.ecn.cz
- Speaking of cars (and the climate change they cause), Rising
Tide are holding a gathering in Manchester next weekend (4-6th
Oct ) looking at global warming, oil, pipelines, corruption, water
privatisation and other dodgy practices. 01865-241097 www.risingtide.org
- Last Saturday, angry residents tore down fences in Crystal
Palace park. The barriers were erected by Bromley Council
who want to sell off some of the historic parkland for re-development.
- Authorities estimate 20,000 people will welcome the ringleaders
of globalisation, the International Monetary Fund and World Bank
to Washington next week. www.infoshop.org
have organised a spoof anarchist scavenger hunt
to amuse protesters: 300 points for smashing the window of a McDonalds
or 400 points for a pie in the face of a corporate executive or
World Bank delegate! Follow the protests at www.dc.indymedia.org
- About Anarchism by Nicholas Walter has just
been reprinted and is well worth reading. Copies from Freedom
Press for £3.50, 020-7247-9249 www.ecn.org/freedom
- As part of the regular international day of action against
McDonalds on October 16th, McDonalds workers have organised
the first ever international industrial day of action. Burger
flippers the world over are being encouraged to check out the
website - http://mwr.org.uk
- Zut Alors! Millions of French teenagers are in for a
shock if they swear at their teachers. New legislation means pupils
could face fines of up to 7,500 euros and even custodial sentences
for such serious misdemeanours as unruly behaviour and that most
heinous of crimes swearing at rail guards.
- This Sunday theres an Earth First Strategy and Action
Discussion Group meeting, near Norwich Which will discuss
the direct action and anti-capitalist movement in present form
and where its going. For a copy of the agenda and to book,
call 01986 781 789.
- A new road construction project that is being proposed near
Stonehenge in Wiltshire could pose a real threat to the
World Heritage site. At the moment they cant decide whether
to go overland or underground, but either way, if the road-building
goes ahead, the land surrounding the stone circle which also has
World Heritage status and includes important archaeological remains
will be destroyed to make room for a new four lane highway. www.savestonehenge.org.uk
- Theres a benefit gig at the Concorde 2, Brighton,
for the street kids of Cape Town, South Africa next Tuesday
(1 October) 9pm Tickets £4
- The following day (2) theres another Fun raiser at
the Volks, Maderia Drive, Brighton supporting Zapatista communities
Seems like while Bush and his cronies are foaming at the mouth
waiting to create new wars they were unwilling to go down that road
and put their own precious lives at risk. An independent newspaper
in the US has published a list of Chickenhawks, high
ranking politicians and other public figures who trumpet on about
war and fighting for freedom but were unwilling to get
their own hands dirty. Their excuses to avoid service range from
bad knees, to skin problems and our personal favourite anal
cysts. Does that mean that when hes trying to give the
world a whole new war Dubya is just talking out of his
arse? See the whole list at www.nhgazette.com/chickenhawks.html
Oil giant Unocal could be sued for forced labour, rape, and murder
committed by Burmese soldiers who guarded a Unocal gas pipeline
project. Because according to a US federal appeals court. Unocal
knew the acts of violence would probably be committed, it became
liable as an aider and abettor. Cases are also pending
against Royal Dutch Shell, Texaco and ExxonMobil for various abuses
by security forces defending their installations. www.burmadaily.com
*Burma Campaign UK has forced Premier Oil UK out of Burma after
producing evidence that investors in the company were breaking UK
and US sanctions. For more info 020 7272 3559 www.burmacampaign.org.uk.
Having given up on the ability of fast food, Mickey Mouse, and
countless CIA-sponsored dictatorships to win them global love, the
US has now decided to try and win world popularity the good old-fashioned
wayby launching a multi-million dollar public relations campaign.
According to senior white-house officials, the propaganda, er, public
relations effort will be supervised by the newly formed, Office
of Global Communications, yet another shadowy Washington organisation
set to ram the stars and stripes down everyones throat. Among
the many pet projects the Office of GC will overseevarious
pro-American radio stations throughout the Arab world, as well as
the American Room concept, corners of Americana
established in existing local libraries or other cultural sites
worldwide. Yippee!! Just what the world needs, more American
cultural imperialism!! Inspired by the events of 9/11, the Office
of GC will attempt to get to the bottom of the mystifying question
posed by George Dubya after the attacks, Why do they
hate us? Well gee George, lets think about it for half
Could waging maniacal world war on anyone who doesnt
bow down to you have anything to do with it?? Or could it be the
last 60 years of terrorism and atrocity known as American foreign
. In a quote too good for us to have made
up, Charlotte Beers, the advertising agency executive Bush appointed
last year to the State Departments top public diplomacy job,
said that America needed to influence the attitudes of foreign
audiences toward our country. Beers has pledged that all U.S.
diplomats will receive more extensive training in the American message
of democracy, personal freedom and free markets and learn how to
spread it through local societies. Guess those bombs just dont
speak loudly enough...
* see the last issue of SchNEWS for a variety
SchNEWS warns all readers it's us or U.S. Honest.
issues 51 - 100 £4.00 inc. postage. - Nearly sold out...
SchNEWS Annual issues 101 - 150 £4.00 inc. postage.
SchNEWS Survival Guide issues 151 - 200 and a whole lot more £4.00
The SchQUALL book at only £7 + £1.50 p&p. (US Postage
£4.00 for individual books, £13 for all four).
SchNEWS and SQUALLs YEARBOOK 2001. 300 pages of adventures
from the direct action frontline. £7 + £1.50 p&p.
You can order the book from a bookshop or your library, quote the
ISBN 09529748 4 3.
In the UK you can get 2, 3, 4 & 5 for £20 inc. postage.
SchNEWS Of The World issues 301 - 350. 300
more pages of adventures from the direct action frontline. £7
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your library, quote the ISBN 09529748 6X
If you can help distribute the new book by taking a few boxes from
Brighton or East London round the country, call the office and ask
for John, Thanks.
to 50 issues of SchNEWS, each book contains articles, photos, cartoons,
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All the above books are available from the Brighton Peace Centre,
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to SchNEWS: Send 1st Class stamps (e.g. 10 for next 9 issues)
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