January 18, 2009

Policeman's verdict on Police statistics for Gaza demo

Rachel pointed out a Policemans blog here which is fascinating:

Around 100-120k people marched yesterday. We were briefed that the public order branch expected, and had been told the plan had been arranged for around 15-20k, despite it being all over the media and sites like Indymedia that around 100k were due to turn up. The estimates on numbers are usually somewhere between the Police ones (invariably considerably less than there actually are) and the organisers who seriously ramp up the turn out...We were told (at around 3pm) the official Police estimate was 20-25k, which was complete and utter bollocks...

I have resisted temptation to join in the comments so far, touching on subjects I know a bit about like Reclaim the Streets etc.

also (from the comments):

A police community support officer has been put on restricted duties for alleged misconduct while participating in a protest outside the Israeli embassy.
The Stop the War Coalition said the officer, who was off duty at the time of the demonstration, intervened when she saw nine police officers "brutally arresting" a young man.

Below someone makes an allegation that the anarchists are in some way joining the jihadis. This is complete bollocks. I don't doubt that both are trying to fight Policemen on these demos but the idea that they would link up away from all this is fantasy. In all the time I hung around Finsbury park I was the only protester type with the remotest interest in events there. The F.I.T not very intelligence squad tried really hard to imagine some sort of link with me on only one occasion for a good 2 minutes. (Conversation in more detail here).

I used to show short films of my expriences at "underground media" meet ups and no one even used to ask any fucking questions. Anarchists are generally pro gay rights and against all organised religion. Between anarchists and Jihadis is a seriously gaping GOD PROBLEM not to mention a goal problem. Would anarchists fight for an Islamic state where women wear burkahs? Well hang on a minute... I suppose they are masked themselves. Maybe it is a sexual thing with anarchists? Anyway..

Another thing I can't get into is all this "Ooooo maybe they will all get more radicalized and bomb us...." media. I feel like I am speaking a foreign language when polite people try to gauge this in media. I just don't even get the concept. Maybe they might become more radicalized and bomb us. mmm. Maybe. Terr-ists could point at the telly and say "Lets do terr-ism". Yup. They could do.



D. Quail (expat) said...

Really interesting to read about the protest from a policeman's perspective. Good find Dave.

DAVE BONES said...

Hey that was Rachel found that eh. I have always been interested in policepersons as individuals and have had some very interesting experiences with them on demos, at Finsbury etc.

I was following links to your blog the other day. Something about Glen Jenvey I think. Daily Quail, great title.

D. Quail (expat) said...


Was watching a couple of your videos on Youtube too, good stuff that you don't normally see anywhere else. I'm always fascinated to see the real side of the tabloid's super-villain characters that they create.

I might not agree with what they say, but making them into James Bond style baddies is never going to help anyone's cause.