Police include Occupy movement on London ‘terror’ list, NYPD is Bloomberg’s “army”

There are four articles here. (1) Police include Occupy movement on ‘terror’ list. (2) Anarchists should be reported, advises Westminster anti-terror police. (3) Occupy London declared terrorist group in police document. (4) Bloomberg: ‘I have my own army’.

From Yahoo! News. Dec 5:
Police include Occupy movement on ‘terror’ list

City of London Police have sparked controversy by producing a brief in which the Occupy London movement is listed under domestic terrorism/extremism threats to City businesses.

The document was given to protesters at their “Bank of Ideas” base on Sun Street – a former site of financial corporation UBS. City police have stepped up an effort to quell the movement since they occupied the building on 18 November, with the document stating: “It is likely that activists aspire to identify other locations to occupy, especially those they identify with capitalism.

“Intelligence suggests that urban explorers are holding a discussion at the Sun Street squat. This may lead to an increase in urban exploration activity at abandoned or high profile sites in the capital.” The Occupy movement is listed alongside threats posed by the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Columbia (FARC), Al Qaeda and Belarusian terrorists.

“Just the words themselves are enough to deceive the public opinion and this is what we see at the moment,” Occupy spokesman Spyro Van Leemnen told Yahoo! News. “We are clearly nothing to do with extremists or terrorists, we are a peaceful group and we do use direct action to raise our point but definitely not terrorism.

“The building has been abandoned for a good few years now and we think it is crazy for a bank to have it empty and not used when we know at the same time there are so many family homes that have been repossessed. Occupying that building and giving it back to the community is definitely not a terrorist act,” he added.

Commenting on the document, City of London Police said: “[We] work with the community to deter and detect terrorist activity and crime in the City in a way that has been identified nationally as good practice.

“We’ve seen crime linked to protests in recent weeks, notably around groups entering office buildings, and with that in mind we continue to brief key trusted partners on activity linked to protests.”

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From Guardian UK. July 31, 2011:

Anarchists should be reported, advises Westminster anti-terror police

What should you do if you discover an anarchist living next door? Dust off your old Sex Pistols albums and hang out a black and red flag to make them feel at home? Invite them round to debate the merits of Peter Kropotkin’s anarchist communism versus the individualist anarchism of Emile Armand? No – the answer, according to an official counter-terrorism notice circulated in London last week, is that you must report them to police immediately.

This was the surprising injunction from the Metropolitan Police issued to businesses and members of the public in Westminster last week. There was no warning about other political groups, but next to an image of the anarchist emblem, the City of Westminster police’s “counter terrorist focus desk” called for anti-anarchist whistleblowers stating: “Anarchism is a political philosophy which considers the state undesirable, unnecessary, and harmful, and instead promotes a stateless society, or anarchy. Any information relating to anarchists should be reported to your local police.”

The move angered some anarchists who complained that being an anarchist should not imply criminal behaviour. They said they feel unfairly criminalised for holding a set of political beliefs.

The feeling of disproportion was compounded by the briefing note author making a similar request about Islamist terrorists a few lines further down. Under an image of flag with a gold dot beneath some Arabic script it added: “Often seen used by al-Qaida in Iraq. Any sightings of these images should be reported to your local police.”

“It unfairly implies that anyone involved in anarchism should be known to the police and is involved in an dangerous activity,” said Jason Sands, an anarchist from South London. “There is nothing inherently criminal about political philosophy whatever it is. The police work under the convention on human rights which disallows discrimination against people because of their political beliefs and even the request for information would seem to be in breach of that. It also seems to be a bit useless as a way of gathering intelligence. It isn’t focused on anything specific and they are just asking for general information. Imagine calling up and saying ‘there’s an anarchist in my building. What should I do?’ It doesn’t make sense.”

The note was issued from Belgravia Police Station as part of Project Griffin which aims to “advise and familiarise managers, security officers and employees of large public and private sector organisations across the capital on security, counter-terrorism and crime prevention issues”.

Sean Smith, external relations officer for Solfed, the British section of the anarcho-syndicalist International Workers’ Association, said of the call for whistleblowers: “It’s pretty absurd, but not surprising, when the state seeks to criminalise ideas it deems to be dangerous to its own survival”.

“We are a revolutionary union initiative,” he explained. “Members of our organisation believe in bringing about radical social change through workplace and community organising, not acts of terrorism. We have made extensive information about our ideas and strategy freely available online.”

Small groups of anarchists masked and dressed in black did cause some damage to shop windows in central London during anti-cuts demonstrations in the Spring, but there has been little activity of late. The next big anarchist event in London appears hardly likely to concern the police. It is a book fair in October with “all-day cabaret starring assorted ranters, poets, singers and comics; all-day film showings and two kids’ spaces”.

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From Examiner.com. Dec 6:
Occupy London declared domestic terror group in police document

If Occupy Wall Street protesters in the United States think they have issues with the police, they should think again.  At least they haven’t been labeled domestic terrorists.According to the UK Guardian, a letter issued by London police on Dec 2 listed the protest movement with terrorist groups like al Qaeda in an advisory sent to area businesses.

The Guardian adds:

“The document issued by City of London police, headed “Terrorism/extremism update for the City of London business community”, included a detailed account of recent and upcoming Occupy London activities and was sent to “trusted partners” in the area.”

The document, dated 2 December, which was passed on to Occupy London’s Finsbury square encampment over the weekend by a local business owner, gave an update on foreign terrorist activities including that of Farc in Columbia, al-Qaida in Pakistan and the outcome of a trial into the Minsk bombing in Belarus.

Below that, a section headed “Domestic” was dedicated wholly to the activities of the Occupy encampments and singled out anti-capitalists as a cause for concern.

“As the worldwide Occupy movement shows no sign of abating, it is likely that activists aspire to identify other locations to occupy, especially those they identify with capitalism,” the document reads.

The letter asks businesses to be vigilant for signs of “Occupy” activity.

According to the Guardian, police have not said how many businesses received the letter but the mailing list “is thought to include large multinationals and banks,” the Guardian adds.

The letter has sparked controversy among supporters of the movement.

A statement from Occupy London says:

“The reference to ‘suspected activists’ seems to demonstrate a disturbing loss of perspective.

“Activism is not a crime and the desire to participate in democratic decision-making should not be a cause for concern for the police in any free society.

“An institution that confuses active citizens with criminals and equates al-Qaida with efforts to re-imagine the City is an institution in grave danger of losing its way.”

An article at Yahoo notes:

The document was given to protesters at their “Bank of Ideas” base on Sun Street – a former site of financial corporation UBS. City police have stepped up an effort to quell the movement since they occupied the building on 18 November, with the document stating: “It is likely that activists aspire to identify other locations to occupy, especially those they identify with capitalism.”

Adam Parris-Long adds:

“Just the words themselves are enough to deceive the public opinion and this is what we see at the moment,” Occupy spokesman Spyro Van Leemnen told Yahoo! News. “We are clearly nothing to do with extremists or terrorists, we are a peaceful group and we do use direct action to raise our point but definitely not terrorism.”

The Guardian says that authorities deny labeling the group terrorists or putting them on a par with al Qaeda while a London Police official said the “title of the document was not helpful.”

Occupiers in London have clashed with police, just as their counterparts in the United States have.

The BBC reported in late November that over 20 were arrested after they attempted to occupy a building near Piccadilly Circus.  The BBC added that protesters also attempted to occupy vacant space belonging to Swiss Bank USB.

Another article at the BBC reports that Occupy London protesters have engaged in drug use, public urination and defecation, just like protesters in the United States.

Yahoo adds that London police commented on the document, saying:

“[We] work with the community to deter and detect terrorist activity and crime in the City in a way that has been identified nationally as good practice.

We’ve seen crime linked to protests in recent weeks, notably around groups entering office buildings, and with that in mind we continue to brief key trusted partners on activity linked to protests.

More on Occupy Wall Street at examiner.com can be found here.

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From Russia Today. Nov 30:

Bloomberg: ‘I have my own army’

Call it martial law or call it a police state. Either one you chose isn’t too far off and New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg knows it. At a speaking engagement Tuesday night, Bloomberg referred to the NYPD as his own army.

Addressing suggestions that he should vie for the White House and leaving the Big Apple behind in favor of joining the race for the presidency, Bloomberg told an audience at MIT on Tuesday that he doesn’t need to tackle Washington; according to the mayor, his reign over New York trumps anything that a throne in the oval office could offer.

“I have my own army in the NYPD, which is the seventh biggest army in the world,” said Bloomberg, reports The New York Observer. “I have my own State Department, much to Foggy Bottom’s annoyance. We have the United Nations in New York, and so we have an entree into the diplomatic world that Washington does not have.”

Yes, Bloomberg said he has his own army. He said he has his own State Department. Yes, he said that New York and his title there gives him practically as power as the commander-in-chief. And yes, once again, Bloomberg said that he has an army.

An army seventh in size at roughly 35,000 soldiers — er, police officers — and first in corruption it would seem. While Bloomberg has been elected to three terms as ruler of New York, his “army” has been plagued with scandal since even before his tenure began. In recent years, however, the cops of the New York Police Department has been caught on the other side of the crime line, with allegations of brutality, rape, cover-ups and corruption becoming just as common in NYC as a pile of pigeon poop.

In the last month alone, officers within the NYPD have admitted to planting drugs on innocent civilians to meet arrest quotas, conspiring within other officers in those very crimes and squashing the First Amendment time after time. The NYPD bypassed the FBI to go after an alleged planner of a bomb attack earlier this month and has also in recent weeks claimed that the force has the firepower to take down an aircraft.

After the police department assaulted peaceful protesters with pepper spray during the early days of the Occupy Wall Street movement, outrage erupted but inhumane and illegal tactics out of Manhattan’s One Police Plaza have only escalated. During crackdowns aimed at OWS demonstrations in recent weeks, cops were caught brutally assaulting protesters and reporters alike, barring members of the media from covering events in public spaces, stripping them of their constitutional rights. Now in its third month, the movement continues to gain momentum, despite the mayor’s refusal to acknowledge the protester’s own rights.

An ongoing investigation that RT has reported on throughout this year reveals that, thanks to some digging of dirt from the Associated Press, the NYPD has even been installing undercover officers in Muslim-majority neighborhoods to conduct clandestine surveillance on followers of Islam — who, if you asked presidential hopeful Rick Santorum, are “obviously” the group of people that are most likely to carry out terrorist attacks.

If Bloomberg doesn’t want the White House, maybe Santorum should forfeit the race and set sights on the mayoral mansion.

Bloomberg has even acknowledged to the AP that civil liberties are being stripped so that his army can enforce laws in New York, saying, “As the world gets more dangerous, people are willing to have infringements on their personal freedoms that they would not before.”

Even if Mayor Bloomberg hyperbolized a bit with his blurb about his military regime, he added on Tuesday that perhaps even the president himself can’t stop him from continuing his reign.

“I don’t listen to Washington very much, which is something they’re not thrilled about,” Bloomberg said.

“The difference between my level of government and other levels of government is that action takes place at the city level. The cities and mayors are where you deal with crime, you deal with real immigration problems, you deal with health problems, you deal with picking up the garbage.”

Is it safe to say that that’s just metaphorical trash that Lieutenant Bloomberg alluded to at his speech this week? It’s good to know that the people of New York have such a thoughtful man calling the shots.

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