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#165260 - Wed Mar 26 2003 05:23 PM Protests Hardly Peaceful
chelseabelle Offline
Star Poster

Registered: Thu Oct 07 1999
Posts: 10282
Loc: New York USA
It is really difficult to think of these protestors as peace-loving--given the nature of their protest:

Protests Turn Violent in Australia and Spain
International Herald Tribune

Protests against the war in Iraq continued around much of the world today, with demonstrators turning violent in Australia and Spain, and defacing in France a pre-eminent American symbol: a replica of the Statue of Liberty.

Some of the largest rallies and bitterest clashes have come in Australia and Spain, whose governments support the American-led war, though the recent number of protesters has not matched the turnouts just before or immediately after the outbreak of war.

A protest in Sydney, the latest in what has become a continuing series of demonstrations around Australia, left three police officers injured and more than 60 protesters under arrest, Agence France-Presse reported.

Demonstrators hurled chairs at police and pelted them with golf balls during what was described as a pitched battle. Protests halted traffic in other Australian cities, including Perth, where about 500 students hurled paint and tomatoes at the United States Consulate General, and a dozen were arrested.

More than 10,000 students demonstrated against the war in Madrid, at the central Puerta del Sol.

As the Spanish protests have turned bitter, even the normally popular monarch, King Juan Carlos I, has become a target. Some demonstrators in Madrid carried signs ("Straw King," one said) criticizing the king for what they see as his passive support of the government's pro-war line.

The Basque Nationalist Party spokesman, Inaki Anasagasti, suggested in the Spanish Parliament on Tuesday that Juan Carlos had made himself a "figurehead for ceremonies" by refusing to stand apart from the government line. This, Spanish news reports said, was an "unprecedented attack" on the king, who has limited himself to expressing "great concern" about the war and hoping for its quick end.

There were clashes in Barcelona, as well. An estimated 300 demonstrators tossed bottles, garbage and eggs at an official of the governing Popular Party, which supports the war in Iraq. Alberto Fernández, a mayoral candidate last year in Barcelona, accused the protesters of beating him.

The party, which alone among major Spanish political groupings supports the war, said 120 of its offices had been vandalized or attacked by demonstrators.

"We are talking about people throwing bottles and excrement, smashing windows, writing insulting graffiti," an exasperated Javier Arenas, secretary-general of the party, told reporters. "What type of pacifism are we talking about?"

In Bordeaux, France, vandals poured gasoline and paint today over a replica of the Statue of Liberty. Mayor Alain Juppe, a former French prime minister, condemned the attack. An earlier version of the statue had been melted down by German occupiers in World War II. The replacement was raised in 2000, and a plaque, added later, commemorated victims of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks in the United States.

Governments in several Middle Eastern countries have watched with concern as protesters have mixed anti-American messages with criticism of the Arab governments that have cooperated, more or less discreetly, with the American-led military effort.

In Jordan, where King Abdullah II has permitted American, British and Australian troops — reported to be mainly special forces — to operate from the eastern border region with Iraq, protesters chanted, "Shame, shame, they sold Ruweished," a border town, "for a dollar." Facing strong public opposition to the war, Abdullah has depicted the presence of coalition forces as defensive and has opened Jordanian airspace only to coalition supply planes.

Several hundred Palestinian writers, journalists and intellectuals marched today through Gaza City to protest the war and call on Arab leaders to speak out forcefully against the invasion of Iraq.

"We support the people of Iraq and their great resistance to the American and British aggressors," Tawfiq abu Hussa, vice president of a journalists union, told the crowd.

Also today, Egypt formally complained to Syria about demonstrations in Damascus in which protesters denounced President Hosni Mubarak as an American puppet.

Thailand saw its largest antiwar protest yet today, as about 20,000 Muslims rallied peacefully in the southern city of Songkhla. The Thai government has taken a neutral position on the war.

Several Pakistani cities saw new protests today. There was a protest in Srinagar, India, as well, where Muslim students shouted, "Iraqis will defeat infidels."

And in Ndjamena, the capital of Chad, riot police used tear gas today to disperse more than 100 students from Islamic schools who were protesting the war. Police said the march was not authorized.


Much of this seems more anti-American than anti-war. And some of it is more pro-Muslim than anti-war.
I think some of these sentiments may have nothing to do with the war, and the invasion simply gives them a reason to vent them in public.
Still Crazy After All These Years

#165261 - Thu Mar 27 2003 12:10 AM Re: Protests Hardly Peaceful
Copago Offline

Registered: Tue May 15 2001
Posts: 14384
Loc: Australia
You have to love the irony of a peace protest turning violent.

Perhaps the media beefed it up a little but what was shown was disgusting. In CB's report it says 'students' which I would have thought implied university students but this was mostly high school kids from the ages of 12 and up, idealistic young souls who didn't seem to grasp the whole situation if you believed the reporter asking kids general knowledge questions about it.

"Kurds? Who are they?"

There seemed to be a core group of 'professional' protesters that were encouraging kids to take the day off school to attend. And then there was the chant that went around "WE WANT A RIOT" and the nails thrown at police. No way was this protest in Sydney ever even pretending to be a peaceful one.

#165262 - Thu Mar 27 2003 12:46 AM Re: Protests Hardly Peaceful
Bertho Offline

Registered: Fri Oct 04 2002
Posts: 974
Loc: Queensland Australia
The organisers of the Sydney event have been linked to an Iraq Communist Movement amongst other equally disturbing factions yet I reckon 1% of the protesters would know that. It's a fair reflection of their mental capacity. 1%. Empty heads.

I think the whole protest movement is disgusting. How much propaganda do they want to give Hussein? Do they realise he is using these violent angry protests to rally support to kill Americans, Brits and Aussies and save himself so he can continue to kill Iraqi's? As Copago said, most of the idiots demonstrating would not even know where Iraq was let alone the real reason allied troops are there being shot at.

So screw up the lives of everyone else that’s just trying to carve out a living. Bash a few police, it's their job to cop this after all. Get some bloody sense. Join the Red Cross and prepare aid parcels if you want to do some good. No one wants war but if it takes me 2 hours to drive 5 km's again I'll give them some local hurt.

Please, do not make this another Vietnam for the sake of the servicemen. In 1970 the docks went on strike and refused to unload the HMAS Sydney. I remember images of returning Vietnam amputees hoping down narrow gangplanks trying to get off the ship because the platforms weren't put up due to the strike. I also remember Bob Hawke taking the salute from the Vietnam contingent on an Anzac day march. It's a disgusting thought.

#165263 - Thu Mar 27 2003 01:45 AM Re: Protests Hardly Peaceful
damnsuicidalroos Offline

Registered: Mon Feb 10 2003
Posts: 2167
Loc: Sydney
NSW Australia
The sight of those protesters in Sydney throwing urine filled bottles,glass bottles,chairs and nails at the police was sickening.There should be a public announcment advising parents to not let their children attend these "events"with the warning that anyone assulting a police officer will be jailed x amount of years.I don`t care that they feel that there is reason to protest,the protesters that LET themselves go out of control should be dealt with by harsh measures both in the streets and in the courts.The freedom to protest about an issue is one thing,the action of protesting in a violent manner is certainly another.
Responds to stimuli, tries to communicate verbally, follows limited commands, laughs or cries in interaction with loved ones.

#165264 - Thu Mar 27 2003 05:59 PM Re: Protests Hardly Peaceful
Kuu Offline

Registered: Mon Jun 03 2002
Posts: 1037
Loc: Hobart Tasmania Australia     
i think people have the right to protest if they do not believe a war is right. I however consider them to be peace protestors, I consider them to by anti- a particular war protestors.

I have been in one of these marches, though it was totally peaceful.

Anti-war protestors are not pro-Saddam, it is that they do not believe war is the way to deal with Saddam, for various reasons.

Why am I against the war

a) I am not convinced that most Iraqis want to be 'liberated' this way. Yes, they want to be free of Saddam but they do not want their fellow countrymen to be bombed and shot.

b) If America wins this war will Iraq be better off in 20 years time or will another dictator arise?

c) I find it hard to believe that our PM, John Howard, is really concerned about the people of Iraq. He was been happy to send Iraqis refugees back to Iraq, against their will, for several years now.

d) To the north of us is a place called West Papua. 30% of the indigeous people of West Papua have died in the 40 years it has been under Indonesian control. That includes 100,000 people who have been murdered by the Indonesian police and army. West Papuans are raped, tortured, brutalised. They need liberation as much as the Iraqis and have actually asked to be liberated.

Australia's 2000 troops in Iraq aren't really needed but in West Papua they could make a difference.

I do not believe that this war is the right way to deal with Saddam and Iraq. For that reason I join the 'peace rallies' though I do not agree with all the 'peace philosophy'. I think that many of the violent protestors only join the marches because they are anti-social and they only want to fight. They don't really care about Iraq, they are looking for excitement. I don't think all anti-war protestors should be blamed for their actions. I don't believe all anti-war protestors have thesame beliefs. I talked to people at the protest who said they would approve of a war that the UN agreed to, they were others that didn't want a war under any circumstances.

#165265 - Fri Mar 28 2003 04:13 PM Re: Protests Hardly Peaceful
Copago Offline

Registered: Tue May 15 2001
Posts: 14384
Loc: Australia
I reckon the point about this one in Sydney, Kuu, is that the organizers were wanting it to turn violent and were using kids to do gather the momentum they needed. Peaceful peace protest are great and part of the freedom that we enjoy in our country but the organizers of this aren't organizing peaceful peace protest. (nobody goes to a peace protest with nails)

SO the police have said that they will not be legally able to hold another that they have planned for this Wednesday. What do they care if it is legal or not? Once again they are encouraging kids to wag school and put themselves in dangerous positions.


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