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London Riots #3: Context

2011 August 9
by Ian Welsh

Wow, just wow:

One journalist wrote that he was surprised how many people in Tottenham knew of and were critical of the IPCC, but there should be nothing surprising about this. When you look at the figures for deaths in police custody (at least 333 since 1998 and not a single conviction of any police officer for any of them), then the IPCC and the courts are seen by many, quite reasonably, to be protecting the police rather than the people.

Yeah.  Ok.  Go read the rest.  What is surprising is that they hadn’t already rioted.

No war but class war, folks.  The rich understand this, and they have been practicing it.

9 Responses
  1. August 9, 2011

    That’s America in a year or two. We’ll soon be just as stingy as Britain’s government, what with Obama promising to spend time working on more deficit reduction (so much for his “pivot to jobs”, to my great surprise!).

  2. guest permalink
    August 9, 2011

    I don’t know about that, Not PAT. Americans have a lot more guns than Brits, so no matter how similar the tensions, I think any outbursts will follow a different pattern. I’m thinking more vigilante justice if it ever got that out of hand, but I’m also thinking we have a lot more cops with a lot more weapons than the Brits, so you wouldn’t see it carry on for 3 or 4 nights either.

    But whether in Athens, London or LA, the end result will be a further rise in fascism/police state as a reaction. And suddenly, the unsustainable and sterile suburban lifestyle could become a lot more attractive, just like the white flight to the suburbs during desegregation and after the MLK assassination riots.

  3. scruff permalink
    August 9, 2011

    <blockquote.That’s America in a year or two.

    Didn’t we just have a talk about pathological optimism?


  4. Tom Hickey permalink
    August 9, 2011

    The world is now engaged in full-on class warfare. Turns out that Marx was right after all, and the battle is now being joined again on a new level.

    The youth of the world are now linked and the only way to prevent them from communicating is by taking down global communications, which would just further inflame the situation.

    It was the rich that declared this war consciously and intentionally through the neoliberal agenda imposed for them by their political cronies like Thatcher and Reagan — and they will reap the consequences.

  5. August 9, 2011


    If you’ve been following Dr. Dawg to any degree, you’ll see that this is happening right at home in Canada too. Not on that scale but getting there. Ottawa and Toronto police are out of control.

  6. Morocco Bama permalink
    August 9, 2011

    Shoe on the other foot.

    Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast urged the British government to order the police to stop their violent confrontation with the people, IRNA reported in the early hours of Tuesday.

    Mehmanparast asked the British government to start dialogue with the protesters and to listen to their demands in order to calm the situation down.

    The Iranian official also asked independent human rights organizations to investigate the killing in order to protect the civil rights and civil liberties.

    I’m laughing out loud because I know what a stick this is. I have to give him credit…for the stick and the hair. I didn’t know they a Hair Club For Men in Iran. That’s globalization for ya.

  7. Jumpjet permalink
    August 9, 2011

    Someone in the street needs to get a posse together and start marching toward the Financial District. I bet they’d get plenty of groupies in short order.

    THAT would be a battle.

  8. August 10, 2011

    More violence will just lead to more repression. The police are now, and will be in the future, stronger — and more brutal — than anyone in the street with a gun and a Molotov cocktail. Sorry, but if you resort to violence you will lose. And in this country, where every goober with a grudge can get a gun, the mayhem is going to be overwhelming.

  9. rumor permalink
    August 10, 2011

    “Ottawa and Toronto police are out of control.”

    If it was only them! Dr. Dawg’s been keeping up on the hijinks of the Peel Regional Police too, and then, of course, there’s the RCMP…

    And don’t get me started on CSIS, although that’s not really an issue that intersects with the public at large in as direct a way as policing.

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