Monday, June 28, 2010
Nobody messes with the G20. They want all of us to know they run the goddamned planet. Got it?
“I called Naomi Archer to find out. She is an indigenous rights worker from North Carolina who happened to be giving a lecture on the Miami Model yesterday at the U.S. Social Forum — the G20 for community activists.Archer, who was in Miami as a liaison between protesters and police, has a 40-box checklist to identify the Model. Here are the main themes.
Information warfare. This starts weeks before the event. Protesters are criminalized and dehumanized, and described as dangerous “anarchists” and “terrorists” the city needs to defend against. “Often, a faux cache is found,” says Archer. “They are usually ordinary objects, like bike inner tubes, camping equipment, but the police make them out to look threatening. It lays the groundwork for police to be violent and it means there’s a reduced accountability of law enforcement.”
Intimidation. Police start random searches of perceived protesters before any large rallies. They are asked where they are staying, why they are walking around. Police raid organizer’s homes or meeting places, “usually just before the summit, so there’s maximum chaos organizers have to deal with,” says Archer. “All this is meant to dissuade participants. The best way to make sure you don’t have a critical mass of people taking over the streets like in Seattle is to reduce the numbers at the outset.” This is usually made possible by last-minute city regulations, curtailing the right to protest. In Miami, the city commission passed a temporary ordinance forbidding groups of more than seven to congregate for more than 30 minutes without a permit.
“They threw rocks.” That’s the line police use after tear-gassing or beating protesters most times, Archer says. Urine and human feces are variations on the theme. But it’s always the protesters who triggered the violence. A popular police tactic is called “kettling.” Officers on bike or horses herd protesters into an enclosed space, so they can’t leave without trying to break through the police line. Take the bait; you provoke a beating or arrest. And of course, there are the famous agent provocateurs, outted publicly two years ago in Montebello. Police officers dressed up like militant protesters to protect the peaceful crowd, they say; Archer says it’s to instigate trouble. In Montebello, one of the three cops dressed in black was holding a rock. “It’s the same lies every single protest,” she says. “It’s justification by law enforcement for their violent actions. This is a propaganda war.” (Click here for the whole thing)
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The secret word is Gassed
Posted by Mick at 6/28/2010 04:08:00 PM