Posts Tagged ‘illegal’

Police Violated Civil Rights – G20 Report

Thursday, May 17th, 2012

Dark days happened in 2010 as security forces caused the largest mass arrests in Canadian history.

Now, a new report confirms what many already knew – during the G20 summit police violated civil rights, detained people illegally, and used excessive force.

The 300-page report finds that “Numerous police officers used excessive force when arresting individuals and seemed to send a message that violence would be met with violence,” continuing on to state “The reaction created a cycle of escalating responses from both sides.”

The report also lambasted the unprecedented use of ‘kettling’, where protesters are corralled by riot squads into closed off areas to be detained and arrested. It is during kettling, where protesters are backed into a corner, where clashes can reach a boiling point and fatalities can occur.

So police were overbearing and essentially silenced attempts at peaceful protest. But what else is there to expect when the government spends 664 million on security? Had nothing happened, the price tag might have seem unjustified.

Still, what is most damning about this entire report is the utter lack of accountability. The authors of the report seem appeased to know their recommendations might be considered by police departments in the future.

But this does little to protect Canadian free speech. How about some firings or fines or something to teach the police a lesson? If anything, the lack of repercussions will just encourage more of the same in the future.

What would be nice to see is a clear message sent to police departments across the nation: do not stifle dissent, do not crush protests, do not silence free speech, do not impede peaceful assembly. Otherwise you will face stiff consequences.

Until that happens, ham-handed security will be free to trample our rights the next time we unite against the injustices of the system.

Update – May 17, 2012 Senior Toronto police commanders are expected to be charged in coming weeks for a variety of misconduct offences over their leadership at the G20 summit in June 2010, according to reports from the CBC.

Awesome! This is more than just a slap on the wrist, or at least it could be.

How to Survive Police Interrogations

Saturday, March 24th, 2012

With more and more activists finding themselves detained or arrested by democracy-crushing law enforcement, it’s worth spending a few minutes with fast-talking and highly entertaining former Defense Attorney and current Law Professor James Duane, offering us some fine advice on surviving interrogations with police personnel.

In short, Duane’s words of wisdom are:

Never, ever talk to police. No matter what. It will never help you.

Israel Expands Settlements, Might Annex Entire West Bank

Tuesday, September 27th, 2011

(Here’s two minutes of self-righteous Israeli settler drivel that you’ll never get back.)

Israel has approved the construction of 1,100 more homes in the settlement of Gilo on the outskirts of Jerusalem, earning widespread condemnation by Palestinian and Western powers, including the EU and US.

The move follows Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech to the UN, where he decried the Palestinians unwillingness to negotiate a peace deal. Well, no shit, Benji – it’s kinda hard to work out a deal if you keep grabbing land from the people you’re negotiating with.

But Israel’s slow, systematic creeping might turn into a leaping pounce, should a new bill pass in the Knesset next month. The bill, which comes in response to Palestine’s bid for UN statehood recognition, will decide if Israel should just go ahead and annex the whole West Bank.

Oh great. Palestine is poised to become an official nation in the eyes of the international community, and Israel decides the best course of action is to usurp as much land as possible, while they still can.

Well, the Palestinian’s bid with the UN was supposed to move forward stalled peace talks. If Israel gets their way, there most certainly will be peace between Palestine and Israel, but only because Palestine no longer exists.

Brutality on Wall Street – Stanford Comes Alive

Sunday, September 25th, 2011

One week down, countless more to go for the daring dissenters from the movement to occupy Wall Street. Despite dozens of arrests, the protesters are holding strong, maintaining an indomitable presence near America’s financial heart.

Now, if you’re looking to be outraged, check out the above video that shows police corralling and pepper spraying a group of frightened females.

Ugh, that is entirely reprehensible. Absurd! The officer who did the actual spraying should be fired, and the police department deserves to be sued.

Whenever these badged bullies use unnecessary force upon activists it makes me long for the days when we view the whole police/protesters scenario like a massive Stanford Prison Experiment.

The Stanford case, if you didn’t already know, involved a 14-day study with 24 students split into two groups – half as the prisoners and half as the guards. The entire experiment was abruptly stopped after only six days as the test degraded to the point of prisoners being tortured by the designated captors.

In New York, the same situation is playing out right now. On one side, some humans have taken the role as activists, and most choose to simply exercise their rights of non-violent civil disobedience.

On the other side, some humans have been entrusted with the role of protectors – sworn to uphold the law. But, as Stanford alluded to, authorities will abuse the power they’ve been given.

So what’s the solution? Well, why not pass laws that make it mandatory for every single member from riot squads to make public a video feed of their actions. Put it all online – unaltered -  open to public scrutiny.

Like the protesters on Wall Street are finding out, the 1% who control most of the wealth are scared of the 99% who want greater equality. It is imperative that we – the regular people of the world – push back against the encroaching security state, now, while we still can.

And one great way to do that is to make it really easy for anyone and everyone to police the police.

****UPDATE****

The officer who point blank maced a penned in group of young women and then slinked away has been identified as Deputy Inspector Anthony V. Bologna. Follow the link for a few ways to file a complaint.

Israel to Forcefully Evict 30000 – Making Room for Settlements

Wednesday, September 14th, 2011

With the looming threat of a UN recognized Palestinian state, Israel has to act quickly to violate as many human rights as they can before the International Community really slaps on the sanctions. That’s why they just approved a plan to relocate some 20,000 to 30,000 Bedouon into recognized settlements.

See, when you’re worried about the erosion of your own culture, it doesn’t matter if you cause it for someone else. By always being the victim, you have a catch-all excuse for any ethnic cleansing you may happen to cause.

The first to be relocated will be the approximately 2,400 Bedouin living in – surprise, surprise – an area east of Jerusalem, easing Israel’s plan to expand existing Jewish settlements. The mass eviction will eventually relocate the rest of the Bedouin living in other areas of the West Bank.

Wow. What a braindead idea, ripe for all kinds of immoral and illegal acts. Sure, the State of Israel is no stranger to committing atrocities. In fact, their entire nation was forged by forcing people from their homes.

But you’d think they would be content without their very own Trail of Tears.

Kucinich: End Illegal War in Libya NOW

Thursday, July 7th, 2011

(Watch out, Military Industrial Complex, there’s a new Sheriff in town.)

Congressman Dennis Kucinich has sponsored legislation that will end US military involvement in Libya on the grounds that it is illegal, unwinnable, and far too expensive. Congressman Kucinich makes some excellent points:

This war is misguided. An invasion would be a disaster. Nato already is out of control, using a UN mandate allowing for protection of civilians as the flimsy pretext for an unauthorised mission of regime change through massive violence. In a just world, the Nato commander would be held responsible for any violations of international law.

The US Congress must act to cut off funds for the war because there is no military solution in Libya. Serious negotiations for a political solution must begin to end the violence and create an environment for peace negotiations to fulfil the legitimate, democratic aspirations of the people. A political solution will become viable when the opposition understands that regime change is the privilege of the Libyan people, not of Nato.

Starting an armed conflict? That’s the easy part. Stopping the armed conflict? That seems to be much harder. All of these US-led wars – Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Somalia, Yemen – were begun with such ease, only to drag on in perpetuity.

But that’s all by design. The longer the wars drag on, the more profits can be made by a handful of people.

Modern warfare is predominantly manufactured. The rationales that we’re given – like freedom, terrorism or saving civilians – are used to distract us from the real reasons for war: securing US corporate interests on foreign soil and channeling billions of taxpayer dollars into those juicy defense contracts.

Fortunately this fact – that most war in the world today is unnaturally forced upon us – is coming to light. The more aware we become, the better equipped we will be to dismantle the military industrial complex. Earths major wars will soon come to an end as humankind stands up to the entities that create and perpetuate institutionalized violence.