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(en) Britain, WAKE UP! IT'S YER INDY NAME OF TRUTH... SchNEWS 469, Friday 15th October, 2004

From Jo Makepeace <webmaster@schnews.org.uk>
Date Fri, 15 Oct 2004 09:21:07 +0200 (CEST)

A - I N F O S N E W S S E R V I C E
News about and of interest to anarchists
http://ainfos.ca/ http://ainfos.ca/index24.html

INDY - STRUCTABLE! "Five Days after the seizures there is still an almost total
information blackout from the authorities in the UK, US,
Switzeland and Italy. Indymedia still has no confirmation of who
ordered the seizures, who took the servers in London, why the
seizures took place, where the servers are now located, and
whether they will be returned." - Indymedia UK.
Last week internet servers in the UK hosting 21 Indymedia (IMC)
sites were seized by the FBI, following a request by Swiss and
Italian authorities. Hang on a minute, the Swiss and Italians ask
the Americans to seize computers based in the UK? What's going on?

Welcome to the wonderful world of the Mutual Legal Assistance
Treaty (MLAT) which formalises cross border policing between the
UK and USA. Here the Attorney General in the US makes a request to
the UK Home Secretary who either grants it or refuses it if the
request is "an offence of a political character." Statewatch
editor Tony Bunyan called on David Blunkett to explain himself:
"Why did the Home Office agree? What grounds did the USA give for
the seizure of the servers? Were these grounds of a 'political'

The FBI said that they are acting on behalf of requests by the
Swiss and Italian authorities. Indymedia have been unable to get
any more information as to what the exact reasons are, but this is
a continuation of attacks on independent media by the US
Government. In August the Secret Service tried to get records of
internet addresses from an internet service provider in the US and
the Netherlands before the Republican Party convention. Last month
the Federal Communications Commission shut down community radio
stations around the US. Two weeks ago the FBI requested that
Indymedia remove a post on Nantes Indymedia with a photo of Swiss
undercover police, while IMC volunteers in Seattle were visited by
the FBI on the same issue.

French Nantes Indymedia, one of those affected by the raid, had
pictures of the undercover cops at the 2003 Evian G8 summit on
their site, and the Prosecutor in Geneva is investigating this.
You can see the the incriminating photos at:

The Italian state has had a campaign of harassment of alternative
media since the G8 summit in Genoa. Last year the far right
Aleanza Nazionale, who are in the Italian coalition government,
called for the closure of Indymedia, and Paolo Valentino, the
state secretary in the department of justice, also announced
possible cooperation with the USA.

The federal prosecutor of Bologna Marina Plazzi said she is
investigating Indymedia because of possible "support of terrorism"
and has asked the FBI for assistance. Apparently this is about
people on the newswire praising an attack on Italian soldiers in
the Iraq last November.

Why didn't the Swiss and Italian authorities approach the British
police directly, instead of the FBI being involved? Indymedia
commented: "We are concerned over the growing use of international
co-operation frameworks by Governments and Law enforcement
agencies which can be used to obscure clear legal process, and
call for openness and clarity in international co-operation, to
ensure due process and that civil liberties are protected."

Protect and Server

The effect of the raids has been to shut down 21 (mostly European)
Indymedia sites, six, including Indymedia UK, are now back on
line. Indymedia UK had multiple back-ups of its files as they are
all "paranoid" according to one Indymedia volunteer - and such
paranoia has actually been justified as many other sites without
backup have lost lots of data. There is a gaping hole on the
internet where about one million Indymedia news articles,
comments, photos, audio reports, and videos used to be.

The FBI has stolen an irreplaceable piece of our collective
history. They've also made a direct attack on an important
component of the movement against global capitalism, a part that
carries messages around the globe without the corporate media
telling us what to think.

Indymedia is working hard to restore sites, but about ten remain
down. At least four - Uruguay, Italy, Western Massachusetts and
Nantes - have lost data. "This FBI operation gives us even more
reason to continue with what we have been doing," says an activist
from Italy Indymedia. "The interruption of Uruguay Indymedia comes
at a bad time with the elections coming up," Libertinus, an
Indymedia volunteer says "Uruguay has a long history of media
repression. We don't have the money to pay for web hosting, so we
rely on the solidarity of other countries. Actions like this make
the whole world insecure for free media."

Indymedia has called for solidarity actions and has received many
statements of support. Aidan White, General Secretary for the
International Federation of Journalists said "The way this has
been done smacks more of intimidation of legitimate journalistic
inquiry than crime-busting." Tim Gopsill of the National Union of
Journalists said: "If the security services of the UK or US can
just walk in and take away a server, then there is no freedom of

Indymedia is consulting the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF)
on how to prevent further government attacks on free speech. "EFF
is deeply concerned about the grave implications of this seizure
for free speech and privacy, and we are exploring all avenues to
hold the government accountable for this improper and
unconstitutional silencing of independent media." said EFF Staff
Attorney Kurt Opsahl.

It's ironic that the seizure of the servers comes just before the
Communication Rights and Tactical Media Production conference - of
which Indymedia is a part of (see www.efcr2004.net). As the
conference blurb says "As Governments and corporations
increasingly base their authority on the ownership and control of
information - a closer look reveals these areas as the landscape
in which crucial struggles are being played out. 'Communication
Rights' is at the heart of these struggles." The attacks by the
US, UK, Italian and Swiss governments on Indymedia are a direct
attack on these Communication Rights.

The servers have now been returned - but Indymedia still don't
know who took them in the first place and what action to take in
the face of these illegal seizures!

For updates about this, as well as the ESF see


NEW BOOK 'SchNEWS At Ten' OUT NOW - Available from Oct 16th at
SchNEWS Conference & Party and other ESF events. Or order yours
from us for £9 inc p&p


Crap Arrest Of The Week

For having an argument 20 years ago!
Caroline Levett was nabbed after getting confused when asked by US
immigration officials whether she had ever been convicted of a
crime involving 'moral turpitude'. Just about to start her dream
holiday, and unsure what exactly 'turpitude' meant, she admitted
being arrested for damaging a former partner's property during a
row, 20 years ago. Obviously turpitudous in nature, the crime lead
to her deportation and being escorted to the plane by two armed


SchNEWS at Ten Birthday Party

Come and celebrate ten years of SchNEWS on Saturday October 16th
at The Coronet, New Kent Road, Elephant and Castle, London in
conjunction with Brighton based sound system Innerfield who are
also ten years old.

The line up includes:
* Freq Nasty (Legendary breakbeat producer)
* Top Cats (UK's finest Ska band)
* VJamm Allstars (live Audio-Visual) featuring Matt Black
* Babyhead (fantastic Ska/Hip-hop)

Plus in the Circle Bar:
* Flannel (anarcho-narco-funk-punk)
* Chris-T-T (man with guitar singing clever, funny, angry songs)
* Don Bradmans (undisputed champions of chap rock)
* Friends of SchNEWS and Innerfield playing music to get drunk to
(and beer's only £2.50!)

10pm till 6 am. Tickets are £8 in advance (in Brighton get them
from Community Base, Queens Road, in London from Access All Areas,
Kentish Town Road) £10 on the door (or £8 for ESF delegates), or
from ticketweb.


Wrong side of the track

Michael Mungovan was a 21 year old student earning some extra
money working on the railways when he was hit by a train and
killed. Not trained or qualified to do the work and without proper
supervision Michael had found himself working on one of the most
dangerous tracks in Britain. He was employed by McGinley
Recruitment Services a contractor for Balfour Beatty Rail
Infrastructure Services, part of Britain's biggest construction
consortium (SchNEWS 356).

The case recently came to court, and corporate killers Balfour
Beatty were given a slap on the wrist for their part in his death,
being fined £150,000 for 'exposing their workers to risk'.
£150,000 might seem like a lot to us, but it's a small dent when
you've earned £2 billion in the last six months like Balfour
Beatty have. The fine is so small because it is in proportion to
the turnover of the company which employs the workers rather than
the parent company.

It's not as if this kind of thing hasn't happened before, Simon
Jones was killed at Shoreham Docks in 1998. Simon worked for
SchNEWS and we helped launch a campaign of direct action to get
justice for him and to expose casualisation. Simon's mother Anne,
spoke of the frustration of trying to talk to a government who
wont listen or learn and don't appear to care: "For five years
I've been hammering it into Government ministers that they must
put an end to agencies pretending the workers they send out are
"self-employed" and so avoiding doing a risk assessment for the
job and walking away scot free when things go wrong."

The Tories cut health and safety enforcement budgets by 25% in
1996, and Neo-Labour, despite many promises over the years, has
failed to introduce a law on corporate manslaughter. The Health
and Safety Commission, recently dropped their demands for a
corporate manslaughter, after a 'note' from the Confederation of
British Industry was circulated at one of their meetings.
Privatisation, deregulation and 'casualisation', have seen the
replacement of professional, unionized workers with casual labour
supplied by agencies as and when required. This is the enlightened
idea of big business directors trying to shave a few more pennies
off their costs.

* Anne Jones and Edgar Paez, international secretary of Columbian
trade union SINALTRAINAL (who are spearheading the coca-cola
boycott) will be speaking on "Our lives, their profits - how we
fight exploitation" at the SchNEWS conference this Saturday in the
Camden Centre 2pm.


Tridental Meditation

On Monday 18 people from Trident Ploughshares and Theatre of War
locked themselves into a 45-foot model Trident submarine outside
the gates of No.10. They were calling on the government to uphold
international law and disarm the submarine, in compliance with the
Non-Proliferation Treaty, which has been signed by 187 countries.

Cherie Bliar's Matrix Chambers has just published legal opinion
which says that Britain will be in breach of the treaty if it
renews the 1958 nuclear cooperation pact with the United States
later this year. Both leaders are about to sign the pact. Where
Bush goes, Blair will follow, this time armed with Nukes, hovering
around Iran, Syria and North Korea.

Rupert Read, on behalf of the activists, said "While Iraq has now
been conclusively shown not to have had any Weapons of Mass
Destruction, Britain has them aplenty, and - in flagrant disregard
of international law and treaty obligations, like an outlaw
state - is doing nothing to rid itself of them."

So Blair & Bush are breaking international law, ripping up
international treaties, attacking other countries for supposedly
doing the same and making a massive profit to boot. Pissed off
with the warmongers and want to know how to oppose them? Mark
Curtis, director of the World Development Movement and author of
Web of Deceit, Ewa Jasiewicz, human rights activist and journalist
recently imprisoned in Israel and Jo Wilding, activist, writer and
witness to the siege of Falluja will be at the SchNEWS conference
this Saturday at 4pm.



"How Direct Action Can Save the World".

Active, popular opposition to oppressive rulers has been the force
of change throughout history. Find out first hand, how to get
involved, organize, plot and discuss resistance to the onward
goose-step of capitalism.

2-3pm: WORK: Our lives, their profits - how we fight exploitation.
3-4pm: WEATHER: Climate change - capitalism's legacy to the world.
4-5pm: WAR: The warmongers and how to oppose them.
5-6pm: WINNING: How direct action can save the world.

Saturday 16th At The Camden Centre, Bidborough Street, (nr. Kings
Cross) WC1. www.schnews.org.uk/at10 and it's free!

* This is also the launch for our new book


True to D-Form

Last weekend the D-form festival in Barcelona, a celebration of
music and art from the alternative culture, was dawn raided by
riot cops. Crushing sculptures, the kids space, a skate ramp, the
café and the bar, which were all built from recycled materials,
the police moved through the festival site chucking what they
could into bin lorries. The festival had been set up to showcase
genuine grass roots art from all over Europe, without sponsorship
or state funding, using underground decentralized networks to

In stark contrast, Barcelona's council wasted millions of euros
earlier this year on the European Forum of Culture - a massive and
expensive flop, badly attended and widely criticized for it's
hypocrisy. A forum for peace, art and sustainability was sponsored
by among others INDRA, Spain's biggest weapons manufacture and
Coca-Cola who recently used para military forces to kill trade
unionists in Columbia; the "sustainable transport" stand was
sponsored by Toyota! Supposedly to promote cultural diversity, the
Forum hosted a "gypsy week" which was built on a spot from which a
big camp of er, gypsy families were forcibly evicted to make way
for the sleek Forum venue.

Not ones to give up easily, the would-have-been-festival-go-ers
threw a big loud peaceful protest, which took over the centre of
town. More than three thousand people danced through the streets
while Ojos de Brujo, a local hip-hop flamenco band played on the
back of a truck.


SchNEWS in very brief

** Next Thursday (21) G8 'Trapese roadshow' will be at Brighton's
Cowley Club talking about climate change, oil, war and civil
disobedience using workshops, short films and a pub quiz that aim
to stimulate debate about the G8. Starts 6pm 12 London Road 01273
696104 www.cowleyclub.org.uk

** It's anti McDonalds day this Saturday (16) in Brighton people
will be at London Road McDonalds from 1pm. www.mcspotlight.org or
020 7713 1269

** For hundreds more party and protest dates check out our party
and protest guide at www.schnews.org.uk/pap/guide.htm


Triple Road Bypass

In time honoured corporate style, Neo-Labour has put UK plc.firmly
back on the route to more road building. Their mates at the
Confederation of British Industry have convinced Blair that they
need to get their hands on the £20 billion in profits that
congestion supposedly costs the country each year. And to help
company bosses jet around to extract cash from every corner of the
world, airport expansion plans are aplenty.

>From the Aberdeen western bypass to the Weymouth Relief Road,
protest camps against road building projects are constantly
fighting eviction. There'll be a gathering in Nottingham at the
Sumac centre between 19th and 21st November to look at what's
being built, where, by whom and what we can do about it. There'll
be some planning of actions, discussions on the role and support
of camps and building networks to support local campaigns.
Booking's essential. 0845 345 1998 www.roadalert.org.uk

And, in yet another shameless plug for the SchNEWS direct action
conference Rising Tide, the grassroots network that takes action
on the root causes of climate change will be speaking about
capitalism's legacy to the world at 3pm.

* The Earth Cymru will be taking the Energy Beyond Oil workshop on
tour next month, looking at energy use, the impending oil crisis
and some alternative energy solutions. For tour dates 01558 685353


Positive SchNEWS

The Freecycle Network is a grassroots movement of people who are
giving (& getting) stuff for free in their own towns, each being
run by a local volunteer moderator. If you want to get a few
useful bits and bobs, de-clutter your life and save stuff going
into landfill at the same time, check out www.freecycle.org


..and finally...

Starbucks have got the hump over a website belonging to the Vacuum
Cleaners. The spoof website shows how to subvert their brand by
filling in a few choice letters on the Starbucks logo and
magically transforming it into the words "fuck off". Starbucks
claims that it "tarnishes" their brand and "goodwill". (Does
anyone give a crapaccino?) And what was that about goodwill?
Starbucks, the coffee shop equivalent of McDonalds, loads up its
coffee drinks with rBGH (recombinant Bovine Growth Hormone)
tainted milk, and "buys coffee and chocolate produced under
exploitative labour conditions, and in the case of cocoa
plantations in Africa, workers who are actually slaves." It also
uses prison labour for its products.

Although Starbucks exploit a broad range of workers they don't
appear to have a broad sense of humour. Starbucks had infamous
political prankster Reverend Billy banned from every Starbucks
coffee shop in the world! Prior to the ban, Rev Billy and the
church of Stop Shopping could be found preaching within the
('arty' and 'atmospheric' haha) interior of Starbucks all over
America, humouring customers with comedy sketches. One sketch
mirrors the brainwashing powers of multinationals as 3 actors sit
around a cup of frappaccino and become euphoric as though it is a

* Make your own Fuck Off cup: www.starbuckscoffee.co.uk

* Reverend Billy www.revbilly.com

Why not register a domain name of your own?
(www.starbucksatemymonkey.net www.fuckstarbucks.com and many more
are still up for grabs, use your imagination!) They might try to
take your website off you like the Vacuum Cleaners but you
shouldn't be too worried about any letters they send.


SchNEWS warns all party-goers our puns are indy-scriminate and
indy-scribable but are sometimes a bit indy-corous ... Honest!



What's On? Check out out Party and Protest guide at
www.schnews.org.uk/pap/guide.htm - it's updated every week, has
sections on regular events, local events, protest camps and



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PEACE DE RESISTANCE It costs £7 INC. p&p per book, further
details as below...this one comes with a free multimedia CD too!

SchNEWS Of The World - issues 301-350 for £5!! Past books are
goin' cheap... SchNEWSround issues 51-100 - SOLD OUT; SchNEWS
annual issues 101-150 - a snip at £2; Survival Handbook issues
- a snip at £2; SchQUALL issues 201-250 - sold out;
Yearbook 2001 issues 251-300 - bargain £3. All prices inc. p&p.
Cheques to 'Justice?' - Honest!

In addition to 50 issues of SchNEWS, each book contains articles,
photos, cartoons, subverts, a "yellow pages" list of contacts,
comedy etc. You can also order the books from a bookshop or

Subscribe to SchNEWS: Send 1st Class stamps (e.g. 10 for next 9
issues)or donations (payable to Justice?). Or £15 for a year's
subscription, or the SchNEWS supporter's rate, £1 a week. Ask for
"originals" if you plan to copy and distribute. SchNEWS is
post-free to prisoners.


SchNEWS, PO Box 2600, Brighton, BN2 0EF, England
Phone: 01273 685913 (NO FAX)
Email: schnews@brighton.co.uk Web: www.schnews.org.uk


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