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TSG Goons Lash Out At Demonstrators By Kensington Palace Gardens

Stalingrad O'Neill | 13.01.2009 11:05 | Palestine | Repression | Birmingham

There is a rumour which seems to have gained credence and may still persist among those demonstrators who took part in the march from Hyde Park to the Israeli Embassy rally point on the 10th Jan 2009. Namely that the Kensington Palace Gardens Gate battle with the TSG happened at back gates to the Israeli Embassy.

But the truth in fact is someone had spotted a large unit of cops in bell helmets some safe distance behind the gates. An increasing numerous crowd parted from the march gathered at the gates and started throwing shoes, setting placards alight and shoving them under the gap of the gate. This in turn ignited the shoes.

The fact that a number of people were sitting on top of the gate wall waving the hammer and sickle flags of the MLKP maybe should have, but clearly failed to alert the crowd, that this entrance was actually the approach to the Russian Embassy!

A quick surf of multimap will confirm where Old Court Place is in relation to Kensington Palace Gardens!

Photo time line –

Bell Hats
Bell Hats


At around 3.23 pm a smoke bomb or flare was thrown and landed behind the cop unit behind the gate. There may have been some confusion in the crowd as to what was happening. For five minutes or so, the outside of the gates were guarded by two lone bell helmeted cops. No idea why or when they disappeared. Maybe their forward position became untenable as the crowd became increasingly pushy!

At around 3.30 pm a unit of 20 Bell Helmets with their retractable batons drawn replaced them. The crowd got pushed back by police as smoke plumed from a small placard/shoe fire behind the gates. Some of the marchers were claiming tear gas had been used, but really it was nothing more than the fumes of rubber or plastic shoes burning. The crowd started to push and hem in the cops, who to be fair, gave warning that if any demonstrator failed to keep a certain clear distance between themselves and the cops, they would get whacked.

First came a shower of placards, sticks and some shoes. Some cops lost their rag and made an undisciplined and unordered feint into the crowd with their batons drawn. A number were in danger of being isolated from their main command, resulting in being swallowed and surrounded by an increasingly ever more hostile crowd with all the consequences that would bring upon their heads. Their unit commander however spotted the danger and after a number of minutes barking orders, re-imposed his control pulling them back in good order.

At some point around 3.35 pm red paint was thrown hitting a number of cops in the unit. The unit may have made several more feints into the crowd followed by lulls as each side regrouped, but to tell the truth I really wasn't counting They were pussycats compared to what was about to happen next.

'Another' smoke bomb was thrown landing behind the 'Bell Helmet' unit 'protecting' the gate enveloping them and the gates in thick clouds of smoke. Poof! Just like a Paul Daniel's magic trick the 'Bell Helmets' were gone and who should appear through the smoke cloud but a unit of tooled up TSG's, (identified by the letter U on their shoulder tab) who proceeding with their batons flailing, waded into the crowd whacking any poor sod who was unable to outrun their baton reach. A task which was nigh on impossible to many who were formerly forward in the crowd but now unenviably at the rear. The whole crowd may have been engulfed in smoke that stung the throat, but its wishful thinking to think as some did, that it was some form of police crowd dispersal. It was the smoke bomb/firework that landed behind the gate.

This crew was taking no prisoners. Literally! Some Asian man who found himself unluckily behind the riot squad, was the first to be whacked. The poor sod went out like a light. People were claiming he was dead. Still its nice to know our British riot police have 'specialist' medic units with them. Who after cracking you across the skull, will revive you and send you stumbling, concussed back into the crowd. Indeed they are no mean practitioners with their riot shield skills. A fact I can attest to having got a blow in the gob from one of them as they cleared the area.

The demonstrators regrouped and pushed forward on numerous occasions reoccupying the space that had been cleared by the grunts, only to have to retreat as the TSG made repeated baton charges. Some group hit on the idea of a sit down protest! Unfortunately it didn't save them from the TSG raining batons down upon them despite the protesters bravely raising their fingers up in peace sign gestures.

On one of these retreats I got a whack from a baton on my right shoulder, which though it hurt like billyo didn't put me out of action. Still unsurprisingly it made me keep a slightly more secure distance from the riot police. Bizarrely not long after I got smacked on the shoulder I met a priest or vicar who was hell bent on approaching the regrouped TSG's. I said to him in passing "I wouldn't count on that dog collar saving you from these hyped up goons mate!" He said to me in what I assume was all seriousness, "when you have God looking out for you, It's all the safety you need". I thought God! Any moment now! He's gonna have a rude awakening, as I watched him march straight into the jaws of yet another baton charge. But they just told him to "Fuck off and be on your way!"

At about 4.00pm the battle was over and the TSG withdrew back behind Kensington Palace Gardens Gates.

Damn! You know next time it’s a dog collar, and not a Press Card for me! White washing up liquid bottles I hear makes an excellent dog collar substitute!

Photos copyright Stalingrad O'Neill - permission is required for third party usage

Stalingrad O'Neill
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the Russian embassy is in the same compound as the Israeli!

13.01.2009 11:43

The Green Zone
The Green Zone

"The fact that a number of people were sitting on top of the gate wall waving the hammer and sickle flags of the MLKP maybe should have, but clearly failed to alert the crowd, that this entrance was actually the approach to the Russian Embassy!"

Which is also the approach to the Israeli embassy.

"A quick surf of multimap will confirm where Old Court Place is in relation to Kensington Palace Gardens!"

You need to look a little closer at that map, Old Court Place is the Israeli consulate address, the embassy is on Palace Green which is the South end of Kensington Palace Gardens.


The rest of the Demo: Hyde Park and along route march to Rally point

13.01.2009 11:50

Photos of various groups and political organisations that took part in the Demo march

Photos copyright Stalingrad O'Neill - permission is required for third party usage

Stalingrad O'Neill
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More photos

13.01.2009 12:04


Stalingrad O'Neill
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i was there

13.01.2009 13:32

i was there. heard the imbecilles that are the stwc stewards telling everyone to leave because it wasn't the israeli embassy. had a quick look in my AtoZ and saw that the road did indeed lead to the embassy - hence the shit load of pigs there. props to all that fought there. the gates were actually shaken off their hinges by the crowd which led to the riot filth shitting themselves and rushing in beating everyone in sight (not without receiving a good beating themselves first!)


You all need to look closer at the map

13.01.2009 14:28

The gates under seige at the North end of Kensington Palace Gardens and the South end of Palace Green are not the gates to the Russian or Israeli embassies but simply gates across each end of that 1/4 mile? long road. There are in fact quite literally dozens of other embassies each festooned with elaborate communications aerials all along the road and as such, it's one of the most sensitive areas in the capital. It used to be a handy and quiet cut-through for bikes from Bayswater to Ken High St but since Israel has done it's utmost over the years to make itself the most hated country in the world, the road is unlikely to be open for public access for a while yet. The Israeli embassy is the first embassy on the west side, approaching from the south. Even so, it's a few dozen metres from the gates and it alone of all the embassies there has a massive anti-car-bomb concrete chicane jutting right into the road like the US embassy has too in Grosvenor Sq. I think they must vie with each other to see who can become the most hated. Anyone claiming to have thrown smoke grenades or whatever "into the embassy" from Ken High St or thinking they can is therefore delusional. With the present level of policing and those high gates, someone managing to redecorate or evict the embassy of it's unpleasant occupants would be performing a miracle and should be awarded some kind of a medal. The windows too are sure to be armoured glass. Don't get needlessly arrested trying. I'm not saying don't carry on protesting there since even if you keep the ambassador and staff awake late and/or increase the cost of policing, that's a result.

There are however other targets and to my mind, the BBC has been getting off very lightly with its apallingly unbalanced coverage of the slaughter in Gaza causing many in this country to still support Israel. For instance, why isn't the BBC and other media reporting the 3000 tonnes shipload of high-tech weapons used to commit further warcrimes that are about to be "smuggled" there from the US via Greece instead of incessantly dwelling on a few small arms and crap stove pipe rockets coming in through narrow tunnels?

I have some pics of the ruck on Saturday outside the gates but haven't found time yet to sort through and upload yet. Sorry.



Display the following 2 comments

  1. missing pictures — curious
  2. missing photos — Stalingrad O'Neill