London is looted and ransacked – Amnesty Int’l calls for restraint by “all sides”
16/08/2011 6 Comments
What was Amnesty International’s reaction to the London Riots when feral mobs of looters ransacked, burnt and pillaged their way through large parts of the city with the Met impotently standing aside and watching the mayhem unfold? To “call for restraint from all sides”.
The “all sides” mantra instantly betrays the degraded thinking of the human rights lobby. Amnesty sees criminally minded mob violence being perpetrated in a patently democratic state (with welfare provision undreamt of in most of the world), requiring the ‘all sides’ arguments to be examined. How exactly was the Met supposed to consult the criminal rioters and ask for restraint?
Was the Met expected to contacted rioters individually or perhaps their families and friends and begin a dialogue about why there were looting local shops and simultaneously ask for ‘restraint’? Amnesty International is unable admit that the looting was criminal behaviour on an unprecedented scale that required a swift and forceful response by the Met.
What does Amnesty say about the Met’s lack of a tough response (i.e. attacking and arresting the rioters) to the initial spate of looting, which, because it was not resisted and crushed immediately, lead emboldened rioters to loot with impunity in the knowledge that the Met was powerless and unwilling to stop them? Amnesty says: “We need proportionality in our policing, not overreaction.”
The Met’s shooting of an armed drug crime suspect, Mark Duggan, as part of its long-running Operation Trident (aimed exclusively at armed crime in London’s black community) is in AI’s weasel-worded explanation, reduced to “the death of a young man”. A protestor at a march held after Duggan’s death said “This guy was not violent. Yes, he was involved in things, but he was not an aggressive person.”
Duggan was found carrying a pistol, yet was “not violent.” He was not a drug dealer, but was “involved in things”. What these ‘things’ he wasn’t involved in aren’t specified, but they probably didn’t involve participating in ‘Peacebuilding Seminars’ at the Amnesty’s Tottenham branch.
Someone tell Amnesty – Hama’s in Syria and Streatham’s in London
Disgracefully, Amnesty compares the Syrian dictatorship’s brutal repression in Hama, (where the Syrian armed forces have killed more than 1,400 unarmed, protesting civilians in the last three months), with the Met’s own non-violent and ineffectual response to mobs of violent looters in London.
The truly heroic demonstrators of the Arab Spring would be disgusted and appalled if they knew that AI was comparing their incredible sacrifices in ridding their countries of dictatorships with London’s looters intent only on ‘liberating’ consumer goods.
When a thieving looter is finally caught by the Met and beaten to the ground, his mother, instead of condemning her idiot son for stealing and looting naturally claims her son is the victim of police brutality and whines about her ‘human rights’.
“We need proportionality in our policing, not overreaction.”
What of the thousands of ruined lives, destroyed businesses, women raped and five murders resulting from the actions of the violent criminals? Amnesty doesn’t say, although it finds time to comment on the crimes and abuses in the Congo, Syria, UAE, Iran and other nasty places.
The Party Superstore in Clapham (via De-Loot London) is a typical looted business. The shop was broken into, looted and burnt to the ground, despite the valiant effort of a neighbour with a fire extinguisher. A large proportion of their profits (used to) go directly to Street Kids Rescue, a charity working with orphaned kids in South East Asia. With the business being temporarily closed, the charity is suffering too. Amnesty says, “we need proportionality in our policing, not overreaction.”
Siva Kandiah, a Sri Lankan Tamil who moved to Hackney to escape the ethnic violence in Sri Lanka asked for the Army to deployed to stop criminal looting. Amnesty says: “call for restraint from all sides and be thankful that we’re not going to see tanks on the streets of Hackney any time soon.”
“Like it’s the government’s fault, innit? ”
Two 17-year old girls speaking to a BBC reporter in Croydon provided an honest explanation of why they looted local shops and whose fault it was that the riots and looting started.
“Everyone was just on a kinda riot, just going mad, chucking things, chucking bottles.”
“Breaking into stuff, breaking into shops. It was maddening”
“It wuz good though.”
“Course it is!”
“Like it’s the government’s fault.”
“Yeah! Whoever, who it is”
“Like showing the police we can do what we want.”
“Yes that’s what it’s all about. Showing the police we can do what we want. And now we have.”
“It’s against people who’ve got businesses. And that’s why all this has happened, because of rich people. So we’re showing rich people we can do what we want.”
This pair of barely-literate, drunken slappers from Croydon with the political awareness of molluscs are more honest about the London Riots than the highly educated, articulate human rights advocates at Amnesty International. Peter Benenson, the saintly founder of Amnesty International isn’t just spinning in his grave, he’s doing cartwheels with triple somersaults.