Joining the group taking the DLR from Blackwall, I was surprised by just how many arms dealers are riding with us. We got off the train, they got ahead of us, and the protester group moved up the steps. The lack of lifts made moving buggies interesting.
This immediately struck me as rather odd. The implication being that wheelchair users don't buy arms; perhaps because wheel chair users are descriminated against so much in big business, often for no real reason (all these co's have lifts in their office blocks). Or perhaps its because people in wheelchairs have a grasp of what bombs and landmines do to people's lives.
Anyhow, I was impressed by various things which happened. First, the speed with which the group sat down, seemingly spontaneously. Second, the guts of parents prepared to breast feed in front of cops. Linked to this, I was aware throughout that these were parents and kids who wanted to stay safe and at the same time, take action which others just weren't happy with. Totally responcible and yet totally involved in the protests.
Next, I liked the way the kids made sure that their presense was felt and new what was going on. I don't think anyone over the age of 5 was there without consenting to it. Eight year olds were telling coppers they couldn't be arrested until they're 10. A small kid took the initiative to run between coppers legs towards the entrace to the Arms Fair (a stunning moment!).
Anyhow, I could go on, but i need sleep. All in all, a great action, which definately made its presense felt in a way other actions might not (especially the CAAT march, stranded over 200 meters away from the centre). I think this tactic, parents willing, will continue to be effective. I now regret not going on the baby bloc at Stirling even more. I just hope the cops don't ask to see my Child Protection Clearance papers; they're a couple of years out of date (but still accurate enough, AFAIK).