They pushed and shoved protestors, they hit out and crippled journalists. I know. I'm sitting here, having taken photos of my right leg. The scary thing is I never even noticed it when it happened. I felt a knock, but that was it. Only when I headed over to the Associated Press office in Camden did I realise I was limping.
The AP offfical that met me immediately pointed this out. It's nothing, I said. which was not a lie. Not compared to the trouncing I recieved in Edinburgh in 2005 - beaten with riot shields and then thrown over a six foot high spiked fence by four good members of the law enforcement society.
No. I never noticed it, in all the adrenalin of the ruccuss. But now, even after all this booze to quell the pain, I'm still hurting.
As one other IMC journalist put it tonight, "It's getting really bad here", meaning the authority in the UK has overstepped the mark. I pointed out the number of skinheads in police uniform. He got interested.
Indeed. A quick phone call to Scotland Yard press office said eight people were arrested. They remain in custory as I write this. Scotland Yard said two police officers were injured, one with a wound to the hand, the other wounded on the leg - no hospital treatment needed.
According to Sctoland Yard, the protestors tried to push past police officers and gain entry to the Mexican Embassy.
This reporter can tell you from being there, on the ground, this never happened. No police were injured, apart from the injuries incurred from their own actions. Yes, protestors were in the face of the officers, banging drums and other improvised instruments, but at no time did they attempt to attack the embassy. The only violence came from the police.
They attacked when their group numbered twice that of the protestors, they grabbed, shoved and beat samba musicians. Any journalists, be them Indymedia, freelance or mainstream, were knocked out the way.
This old hack was threatened with arrest at least twice. First for blocking the pavement, then for blocking the road. There was nowhere to go. And that is the way they played it.
Marc Vallee, the UK journalist injured at the Sack Parliament protest on 9 August in London, pointed out to me that things were going to get rough, because he spotted several large members of the police force being brought in, the very same officers that had been the brunt of violence on that day outside parliament not two weeks ago.
The protestors gathered, played samba drums and caused a major scene outside the Londson Mexican Embassy. The result was a massive clampdown by police.
They lassed out, attacked protestors, beat journalists, some reported with batons. I witnessed one officer putting his baton away, but never witnessed anyone being hit with a baton.
But the injury to my own right leg would point to being struck with a baton.
Now, some one and a one half hour later, maybe eight hours since the incident, all I know is I'm in pain. The booze ain't working. I wish I had a bottle of Mescal here. Maybe that would quell the swelling. Or the ache at least.
But if this can happen here, what is happening elsewhere? In Oaxaca.
Something changed tonight. Mainly because the mainstream media wasn't around to make it public. But for the people on the street on that night, in a light drizzle, that attracted every south and central American I know, the authority dictated how this would fall. You do as they say. They ban you from the pavement. They ban you from the road. Then they move in and beat you within an inch of your life.
This is hard times for London, in the UK. And it shows no sign of relenting.
For Bard Will, all that awaits is a griefing family, and a grave or incineration. He will never be forgotten for what he has achieved as an independent journalist. But for the rest of us, Brad's death is only the beginning.
For now, all that I can concern myself with is whether I can walk tomorrow. My calf muscle says no, the booze says fuck you, I say missed me you mfuckers. Better luck next time.
Okay for now.