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trafalgar square pic-the police are lying bastards

richieP | 21.11.2003 03:08 | Bush 2003 | London

30,000 (police figure, radio 4, 5pm)-yeah right. this picture was taken when there was still more than an hour of people to arrive.

trafalgar square
trafalgar square

this overhead shot which misses out quite large parts of trafalgar square and shows what a magnificent demonstration took place today. obviously the police lie out of habit (think of every court case you may have witnessed) but really you would think that they would make a better job of it by now. big victory for us-bush confined to his crap b&B (what do they spend our money on?)-no cheering crowds for him and arse kisser blair, top day out.



Hide the following 21 comments

Nice photo...

21.11.2003 09:41

Nice to see the people taking reclaiming their streets..

Keep up the good work..

Send him home in the Love Tank...


Everyone should hqave masked up for this march

21.11.2003 10:15

Everyone should have masked up for this march as police photographers were out taking photos of people and undercover police were looking for known activists. I was one of the few people masked up and was threatened with arrest if I didn't remove my mask. If everyone masks up at demonstrations then the police can't intimidate people.

Yorkshire anarchist

Be creative with your masking

21.11.2003 11:38

Wear a mask that is a political or theatrical statement in itself. This makes a strong impression and is better tolerated by the police. I wore orange overalls and a brown paper bag over my head with a very small eye slot and the slogan "Don't be hoodwinked" on one side and "send Bush and Blair to Guantanamo Bay" on the other. It left no visible features for the cameras, made a strong point and was accepted by the police. I have never been so photographed in my life, but mostly by journalists and fellow protesters, identity concealed!


Stand up and be counted or mask up?

21.11.2003 11:43

You can't expect *everyone* to mask up on a state sanctioned demo, what's the point anyway?
To be honest in the last few years I've thought to myself, fine if I am likely to do something involving civil disobedience then I'll take the time and trouble to mask up, or creatively change my appearance. But if you're just gonna hang around posturing that you're some kind of wannabe revolutinary who does fuck all when it comes down to it, what's the point? If it makes you feel more secure then fine go for it, but there's also the point of transparency. When are more people gonna stand up and be counted? If this means defending our right to protest and expression in court then bring it on! We all should defend our right to protest.

99% of the time they are just trying to intimidate you by filming or photographing you. Try pointing a video camera at them and asking for their ID, it freaks em out and readresses the power relationship between you and them. It also mediates their behaviour, to some extent...

The orange overalls of the Guantanamo Bay detainees look like a good way of 'legitimately' masking up. Hey and you can also get away with bringing some chains with you ;0)
Either mask up or disguise yourselves or stand up and be counted, just don't expect 300,000 people to mask up who for the most part are quite content with declaring their dissent openly.
Ignore the FIT teams and get on with some proper NVDA!

99% of the Pig's power is *just* intimidation


21.11.2003 12:21

Yorkshire geezer if like the majority of people there yesterday, who were only there to demonstrate why wear a mask?

It's idiots like you that have the demo's so heavily policed. The more peacefull the demonstration the better the attitude from the OB

Apart from the thugs from the City I thought the OB were outstanding yesterday!!

Keep it fluffy..


Photographing/filming at protests

21.11.2003 13:38

Crowbar - I was amazed at the number of PROTESTORS who were constantly filming and photographing other people, never asking for permission. I was starting to wonder who the hell these people are working for, the coppers or the tabloids, untiul i realised they were just completely ignorant and disrespectful of the rights of other protesters. Why do so many activists feel the need to stick a digital camera in my face?

Bob Dylan Thomas

numbers - the above figure was an early number

21.11.2003 13:48

the police ended up being quoted as either 110,000 or 100,000 up to 110,000


peaceful = obedient?

21.11.2003 13:56

Heavy policing is a response to a potentially EFFECTIVE demo; it has nothing to do with how violent/nonviolent we are. There are reasons to be nonviolent, but 'keeping the police happy' is NOT one of them.

I don't like the way that peaceful has come to mean obedient, rather than the obvious meaning of nonviolent. Anything effective must logically be disobedient and a threat to their power - and therefore seen by them as non-peaceful, regardless of how violent or nonviolent the activity.

Wearing a mask doesn't mean you are ashamed of your actions or have anything to hide; it's a principled refusal to allow the state to gather personal info on us. Of course people sometimes do have a very good pratical reason as well, eg if they are known to the cops who are out to get them. The wearing of masks by everyone else can then be seen as a gesture of solidarity with those the cops try to criminalise.

There are very good reasons for masking up, and I would encourage everyone to do so. There are also problems with masking up, mainly the threatening way it is perceived by those who don't understand the reasons for it. We have work to do to counter this, if we want to be able to mask up without people believing the mainstream media when they demonise us for it.


bring on the orange overall block!

21.11.2003 14:20

what a great idea! hide your identity and make a statement about the detentions - 500 strong orange overalls would be amazing!

like others have suggested it would also avoid the scary black block image that many people who maskup have on demos - not saying there's anything wrong with that style, but it does comunicate to most people something quite specific (think anarchist, intent on violent acts etc)

so either the perception of black style masking up needs to be changed, or, like has been said, more creative / colour ways of doing the same thing need to be developed (and I saw a good deal of this yesterday.

on the subject of changing perceptions of black block style masking up there was a great action in the strasbourg no-border camp the other summer, where the action of those black block masked up types was simply a hit and run subvertising mission on the demo - it was an amazing sight.


Conversion Table

21.11.2003 15:54

"the police ended up being quoted as either 110,000 or 100,000 up to 110,000"

Remember the exchange rate mechanism, whereby 1 Met = 1.5 to 1.7 Real World.

(Except, of course, when the march is organised by the Provisional Country Landowners And Tame Serfs Association, where a special rate of 1:1 applies).


mask/unmask? a personal choice!

21.11.2003 16:00

I totally agree that peaceful and obedient are two different things. I also think masking is a matter of personal choice, I support those who wear disguises, and the more creative/wierd the better. Myself, I don't hide my identity as I actually feel stronger for not being anonymous. As a result I am well known to the police who rib me whenever I am recognised but I feel ok in myself for not being afraid of them, or intimidated by their attempts to make me paranoid.

However, its not always the sensible option to go unmasked, I wouldnt advise it to anyone else as its an important personal choice and nobody knows better than you if you will need it. Also, its interesting and fun to look entirely different at each action, or completely anonymous as you choose, as well as a useful way of making yourself hard to recognise.

And there is also the fact that to go masked is a creative act of defiance in itsself, it is a symbol of liberation, not just (justified) paranoia.

And yeh, that was a fucking HUUGE demo!

A. Nonymous

Let's be farmers

21.11.2003 17:09

Why pay taxes to the masonic govt? We don't owe anything to them so we don't have to pay them. Going back to the ancient farming can free one from such slavery.
Jesus Christ is the one and only Saviour.


Bush "welcome"

21.11.2003 20:59

30,000 the police were saying yesterday afternoon. B******t. It took us two hours to leave the starting point - and we were in the middle of the march! What an amazing day! When asked today at college whether I was bothered about taking ONE day off and missing out on my education I had only one answer: what education at college? The streets are where we are being educated now!!!


People taking pictures

21.11.2003 23:52

People who take pictures at demos (other than police photographers and journalists) might have perfectly legitimate reasons for doing so - quite a few of them have posted their work on the web so that people who couldn't come to the demo can at least see what happened.

And as for 'everyone' masking up, that just plays into the hands of those who tried to label all the protesters as 'the usual suspects' or 'a bunch of social misfits'. The more normal you look the better media coverage you will get - if everyone had worn a suit it would have looked as if the demo had a much broader support base than if everyone had worn a mask.


Way to go Brits!!!

22.11.2003 04:32

Way to go guys! From the pictures I've seen, it looks like it was an AWESOME demonstration! Unfortunately, I haven't seen a signle mention of any protests on the American corporate media. Of course, there's never anything useful or informative on CNN/FOX news or any other media outlet here. That's why I get my news from the internet. Even protests here in the states don't get anything but sketchy coverage which vastly understates what happened. But rest assured that many of us feel the same way you guys do. Keep up the great work!


Thank You!

22.11.2003 08:48

To the British, and to the Americans, from an Alaskan...

Thank you one and all for taking to the streets this week.

The contrast between the British and American experiences is quite stark. A casual observer flipping through the web photos of both demos can easily see that the British society enjoys more freedom and trust from it's government.

Witness the American police with spooky black body armor, tazers, rubber bullet guns, armored personnel carriers, etc. and stern and somewhat angery or apprehensive looks on their faces...

Witness the British police with concerned but passive looks on their faces. Wearing yellow jackets, little visible weaponry, and no tanks or heavy weaponry backing them up.

It is clear to me from the latest web footage, and from personal experience, that Americans must deal with a great deal of suppression and intimidation from the police whenever one chooses to step out-of-line on U.S. soil.


Thank you one and all.

Thank you Brits, for countering Bush at his every turn.

Thank you Americans in Miami [and at Fort Benning this weekend!] for braving the scary edge.

Alaskans in Peace

Alaskans in Peace


22.11.2003 19:11

Mask up!! why - the whole think was tame. The Samba band were the DB's (as always). I think the whole thing was about expressing feelings. People wear masks to intimidate and goad the Cop's but at the end of the day if you are not doing anything wrong why hide your face. Most of those wearing masks are light-weights anyway - Lindis Percy didn't wear a mask and she made the biggest impact on the media. Some of you rebels without a clue should look to the ex-Greenham girls for inspiration.

Mad Anna

London Protest

23.11.2003 18:29

It was very interesting to hear about the various estimates of people that attended the protest and march this week. Although the 30,000 may be a low number... there is no way that there were 100,000!!! I guess like everything else in life the answer is somewhere in between.


leftist propaganda.. from the cops?

24.11.2003 17:53

Dave, even the police said 100,000! Get a grip mate.


lots of people

24.11.2003 18:13

I'd say there was 100,000 for sure.
it was a good demo. I'm heartened to see comments left here by americans too.
kinda puts that 'anti-american' cobblers by the press and the like into perspective.
its also terrible to see the reactions of the US police to demos. God forbid that it should happen over here too.

daniel gurney

Another reason for cameras

24.11.2003 21:20

Also remember that the proliferation of cameras can be a great force against tyranny. It depends on who's holding the images, but more of the general public having more cameras in more places means a better guardian against authoritarian brutality.

PS thanks a billion to UK brethren for showing up on the streets. As you've heard already, we in the USA saw none of it (well-timed Michael Jackson arrest, anyone?)

Even on the web, though, I can't find good picks of Bush effigy being pulled down. It was a great idea! Did it appear on UK TV news? newspapers? How much and which ones?