London Indymedia

Legal Update: DSEi, Anti-War protests and others...

IMC UK (gdm) | 12.09.2003 12:53 | DSEi 2003 | Thessaloniki EU | Anti-militarism | Repression | Social Struggles | London | Sheffield | World

Legal Update 16th September here.
Samba player in deep trouble after having been badly beaten by police and spending two days at Charing Cross police station; Witness appeal.

Liberty are asking for reports from people who were stopped and searched, ASAP. An email list has been set up for people who were arrested / beaten etc..

Since the 1st of September, 144 people have been arrested in protests against the Defence Systems and Equipment international arms fair (DSEi) that has been taking place in East London. Policing tactics have been condemned by a wide range of people and Liberty is have won the right to seek a High Court injunction over use of Section 44 of the Terrorism Act 2000; they have also offered to provide legal representation for anyone stopped or detained under this legislation. Bindmans Lawyers have also requested information or witnesses from DSEi.

Numerous requests for witnesses have been made on the UK indymedia newswire [1 2 3 4 5 6]. There have also been several videos posted showing police violence against demonstrators which may provide evidence [ 1 2 - more can be found on the full reports from the 9th, 10th and 11th September].

Meanwhile, Anti-War demonstrators are still being threatened with - and receiving - harsh sentences. Protestors from Fairford come to trial next week while some are still fighting to get the charges reduced before they come to trial (Background to the case). Yet others are still looking for witnesses and some, like Ulla Roder (who was arrested for damaging a Tornado war-plane), have had their trials delayed numerous times.

Further afield, Simon Chapman and the Thessalonikki 7 remain imprisoned in Greece (solidarity website). Simon's first appeal has failed (against the charges) and he is currently awaiting the results of a second appeal. Key evidence such as the video have been re-submitted. In the United States, webmaster of Sherman Austin has been imprisoned for 1 year; he has since been subject to death threats and is being kept in solitary on the grounds of safety as a reason.

IMC UK (gdm)


Hide the following 9 comments

Any videos of Mayday 2003?

24.09.2003 13:42

If anyone has any videos of Mayday 2003, especially of the green bloc, can they please get in touch with me.

My boyfriend is facing two charges of assault against the police, a video of him on the day would be really useful.


mail e-mail:

Time for activists to join us in the real world

03.10.2003 08:27

The UK defence industry is one of out flagship enterprises, and I must agree Dsei this year was particularly good (some very exciting development, and I must day the new Israeli small arms were about the most impressive, goes to show there’s no substitute for combat experience when it comes to designing reliable, useful kit.

In response to the people whining about the exhibition, well what can I say? If you want to spend week shouting at people who are just laughing at you, fine, and as for the security operation your nonsense caused, you should be ashamed of yourselves.

The police have VASTLY better things to be doing than chasing a bunch of middle class "rebels" around docklands (before they go off to be accountants in "daddies" firm). I come from a poor background and through hard work and ability I am now in a position where I can reap the benefits, that what capitalism is all about, and that why I love it, because if you work hard and are smart, nothing can stop you.

I can now afford to go on holiday a few times a year, I travel all over the world with my work and live in a nice rural house, and that is all due to my hard work, study and effort in the armed forces and since leaving working for a major defence contractor.

You complain about the UK defence industry, and complain that the liberation of Iraq was a terrible thing. You’ll find that the UK defence industry is one of our strongest and most innovative sectors, one of the few areas we still lead the world in, and as for moaning about Iraq, if you stop the average Iraqi they will shake your hand and thank you for saving them fro Saddam, and it is only a tiny minority who are fighting, but these are the people who have most to loose if Iraq joins the UK and US in the camp of democracy and freedom (and before you moan that we are not free, try complaining the way you do about the government in Cuba, North Korea, Syria etc and see how long you last lol).

What I really don’t get, what you don’t seem to understand, is that not only are we winning the war on terror (35% LESS terrorist incidents world wide since the liberation of Afghanistan), but that we are the good guys in all of this. We are protecting our own nations interests and our own people, and that all that matters.

I am damn proud to have played my part throughout my whole adult life in defending the UK, as a soldier and working in defence, and yes I have seen what these weapons do up close and personal (which I doubt 99.9% of the "activist" movement have) and no, its not pretty, but if the UK and out allies are not equipped with the best combat systems which money can buy, it will be our troops, not our enemies who will be the ones on the receiving end, and the whole point of war is not to die for your country, but make the other guy die for his. War is an unpleasant but in some cases necessary endeavour, because at the moment we in the west are under attack from not only outside our borders, but from subversive elements within, and its about time that the activists realised this and done their bit, instead of moaning, because some of you are quite clearly intelligent people who could have glittering careers in the armed forces, police or in the defence industry if you would just grow out of you political silliness a bit earlier. Yes I know its very fashionable and makes you feel like some sort of student radical/left wing intellectual etc, but student radicals grow up and left wing intellectuals end up teaching philosophy (or some equally useless subject) at university, which is fine because they have their FREEDOM to do that, freedom hard won with the blood of British and American soldiers worldwide.

What makes me the most sick though is when I think on friends of mine who have been killed, and the disrespect that its shown to them by so called "political" activists? You may disagree with something, but as soon as the military are engaged in fighting a war, your petty beliefs become irrelevant and the important things are the troops fighting and their families. How would you like to be lying bleeding to death at the side of the road in Iraq, knowing that if you die your parents will be bombarded with some idiots moaning about the war, trivialising your sacrifice? Knowing that your family will not receive time to grieve because the television constantly spouts anti war nonsense at them.

If you are going to whine, at least have the dignity to do it when the troops come home, and not while there is a chance of taking casualties, for the sake of the families.

Kenny Smith

The defence industry is not about defence

08.10.2003 12:23

So Kenny,

how many times have you or your company sold weapons to countries that are not our allies? We all know that Syria was invited to this years DSEI, and as for you wonderful Israeli small arms, they have killed 3 Britons in the past year, in cold blood.

For what it's worth, all the military people that I know take a pretty dim view of the arms trade, precisely because of their willingness to sell our technology to whichever of our enemies want to buy it.

You're willing to risk the lives of British troops and civilians, just so that you can afford to 'go on holiday a few times a year.' Shame on you.


all the military people you know???

09.10.2003 09:33

All the military people you know? well i have a funny feeling i might no a few more military people than yourself ( even though this is a stupid argument to get into with someone bereft of logic like yourself), have no problem with the arms trade and realise its importance to the UK economy.

As to your point on who British compnaies sell to, british companies will sell defence products only to freindly nations who are our local and geographic allies (and i would place the Syrians in the flawed by saveable category, as the prime minister has a good relationship with thier leader, who's wife is actually British).

I do however support the isreali defensive strike they launched into Syria, as the Syrians are getting a little too close to Palestinian terrorists and they (the Isrealis) had to react to the naked Palestian terrorist aggresion shown on thier civilians.

You'll probably be on of those people who whine about the Isrealis defending themselves from a concerted terrosits campaign as well. The thing people like you have to remember is that the isrealiis may accidentally kill civilians, which is deeply regretable, but they aim for purely military targets, thier goal is to disrupt and destroy the terrorist groups targeting them, whereas the Palestianians ( who have a hell of a lot more than rocks before you start moaning that thats all they have to "defend" themselves) target purely civilian targets and try to kill as many civilians as possible, which is so typical of movements like them who will not fight in an honourable and professional manner, as the isrealis do.

Kenny Smith

Friendly nations?

09.10.2003 13:36

In recent years UK arms companies have supplied weapons to both Indonesia and Mugabe's Zimbabwe. Since when was Mugabe an ally?

You might also remember the matrix-churchill affair, the UK again supplying weapon parts to Saddam's Iraq, not exactly a 'friendly nation.'

Hardly 'local and geographical allies'.

Your defence of Syria is ridiculous, and displays your lack of knowledge. Syria has provided support for Palestinian terror groups in the past, and though they now claim not to, there is widespread belief that they still do. You claim to support Israel, yet you see no problem with arming the people who aid the terrorists targetting Israel.

Do I have to remind you that it was French missiles that caused so much death to British forces in the Falklands?


oh how it makes me giggle, living in your world must suck

09.10.2003 18:01

Ah, the old activist stalwart "your right wing, so you must be thick, because only left wingers can grasp just how evil the world is", it always makes me laugh.

The British government classes Syria as a friendly nation in the area, I remind you that although there was substantial evidence of Syrian involvement/apathy towards saddams regime, they were also stalwart supporters of the liberation of Kuwait in 1991 (sending an armoured division, and that the British and Syrian government traditionally remain receptive to each others requests, no matter what the surrounding geo political situation, so I'm afraid it is you who need to do some reading, as even the British government classes the Syrians as friendly nation in the middle east.

As to supplying the Syrians with weapons, that I have no problem with. I am not a unconditional supporter of Israel, but I support any nation utilising their professional military forces to defend themselves from terrorism targeted at women and children, and the surgical strike on Syrian territory by Israeli air power was not targeted at Syrian forces, but at a training camp the Israelis believed was educating Palestinian terrorists or supplying them with support.

It is clear that the Palestinians are a vicious and dangerous enemy to world peace, and the Israelis done us all a favour by taking them out, but the Syrian government are in a dammed if you do, damned if you don’t situation where if they are seen to act against Palestinian terrorists, it will cause problems within the Arab grouping of nations for them politically. I think this point is best illustrated by the lack of opposition met by Israeli forces in carrying out their operation, and the lack of a military response from the Syrians, who were probably quite glad to see the back of them as well.

As to Mugabes government, yes defence equipment was sold to them in the years after their revolt (a revolt I must add at this point, was whole heartedly welcomed and supported by the UK left and “long haired” activists movement, to the extent of Mugabe being classed as a hero by the anti apartheid idiots when “free nelson Mandela T-shirts” were the latest vogue for students, you know, just after the CND t-shirt (which I've noted coming back recently, have people forgotten that CND was infiltrated and controlled by the East German stasi during the cold war? A revelation which sent Bruce Kent (who has also stuck his head up recently) into the wilderness for a number of years, even admitting himself of his “naivety” in not realising that his movement was basically a subversion tool for the eastern block), and before you try and poo poo, that, go and check yourself, its open source information.

On a side note, I do find it funny that everyone seems to be up in arms about mugabe now, when for years the UK right have been receiving gibes of “racist” or “colonials oppressors” for saying the same thing, but then to the UK activist movement, 100,000 white farmers don’t matter because they “deserve” what they are getting, an attitude I find breath taking as genocide is still genocide, ethnic cleansing is still ethnic cleansing, no matter who is the recipient, and it’s a bit rich for the UK left to criticise now, as they are as much to blame for Mugabe as the establishment, for supporting his terrorist war against the Rhodesian government.

Coming back to the point in hand, no, Mugabe is not an ally not, but he was when the equipment was sold (again thanks to the UK left putting him on a pedestal), and he was not sold any proper war fighting equipment, no main battle tanks, no combat aircraft, no warships (obviously), but was sold small quantities of small arms (being a left wing, saviour of his people, who was to know he would turn them on his own people?), and besides, he was not direct threat to British interests, so what the problem?

As to the exocets that the French supplied to the Argentineans, your not seriously classing the French as our allies are you? They stab us in the back at every turn and hate the fact that the UK and US present a united front on most matters, as they want us to become satellites of the Franco/German European empire (otherwise known as the EU), something which as long as we are shoulder to shoulder with our American cousins will not happen. And besides, the French have sold weapons legally to Saddam for years, with the full approval of their government, whereas the super gun affair with Matrix Churchill was in complete contravention of UK export laws (hence when it was discovered, it was impounded and people got nicked for it).

Mark, you’ll have to enter the real world at some point, it may as well be now. You will also note that I answer all your points; I don’t pick the ones I want to have issue with. I have noticed that activists are very good at picking one point every six or seven, heavily criticising it and completely ignoring points and issues they have no answer for the old ”head in the sand” approach to politics that the left seem to adopt, again much to my amusement at their lack of background knowledge or depth of thought on a subject. As to supply of weapons to Indonesia, what’s wrong with that? They are engaged in a counter insurgency campaign against vicious terrorists, and the Indonesian military have done an excellent job in dealing with them in a professional and measured manner. Again the terrorists targeted Indonesian civilians, whereas the professional Indonesian army may kill civilians by accident, but that the unpleasant business that is war, but their targets were military.

Kenny Smith

Off your rocker

10.10.2003 22:56

So Syria is an ally, whereas France isn't? Yeah right mate, if I find you marbles I'll let you know.



13.10.2003 09:04

Typical, rather than answer valid points utilising your obviously limited knowledge of world affairs, you ignore what doesn’t fit your limited worldview and make an ill considered, pathetic comment.

I always love when you corner people like you with facts, because your then forced to resort to:

A- Insults- a stalwart political favourite of the UK activist movement
B- Shouting- In the belief that whoever shouts loudest makes the most valid point
C- denial- the afore mentioned, "Head in the sand" politics of "if the information doesn’t fit my view, then ill ignore it"

Syrian has been a friend of the UK in the Middle East for years, where as the French? Yes they might "officially" be a semi participating member of Nato, the French will take any and every opportunity to stab the British and Americans in the back (as you so helpfully pointed out over sales of exocets to the Argentineans, their lack of support for the international war of terror, their attempt to protect their business interests with the Baathist regime in Iraq.

I don’t know why I bother having discussions with people like you, your limited word view, lack of knowledge of world affairs and inarticulate way of expressing your badly thought out, evidentially unsupportable views doesn’t make for a very interesting discourse.


Your 'facts'

13.10.2003 11:34

Well, to take 2 'points of fact' that you mentioned,

You said,

As to Mugabes government, yes defence equipment was sold to them in the years after their revolt... and he was not sold any proper war fighting equipment,... no combat aircraft... and besides, he was not direct threat to British interests, so what the problem?

The facts are that UK companies supplied Zimbabwe with spare parts for Hawk jets in 2000. This was after Mugabe started the repression of the white farmers.

You said
As to supply of weapons to Indonesia, what’s wrong with that? They are engaged in a counter insurgency campaign against vicious terrorists, and the Indonesian military have done an excellent job in dealing with them in a professional and measured manner.

The facts are that after the East Timorese independence referendum in 1999, Indonesian military and Indonesian backed militias started carrying out widespread massacres on native East Timorese. An UN peacekeeping force was despatched to East Timor to protect the local people from the Indonesian sponsored attacks.

So you're either misinformed, or you're lying. I could refute your other 'facts', but I have better things to do with my time to be honest. The comparison of Syria and France was just the most obvious nonsense that you have come out with.



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