A Debate on Protest Tactics. What works, what doesn't

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milo204
A Debate on Protest Tactics. What works, what doesn't

After getting a glimpse of the security apparatus, and watching tactics succeed/fail.  Anyone have any suggestions on updating or employing new tactics for future events?

 

1. how do we stop the snatch and grab raids on innocent people by riot cops.  didn't seem that anyone was prepared for that.  Is there any good ways to challenge that?

 

2. Civil Disobedience.  any suggestions for large scale civil disobedience beyond the act of public assembly.  There must be ways to clog things up with a group that large and make it difficult for police to do their work.  There must be actions we can undertake to demonstrate the ideas were supporting beyond what we're doing already that would symbolically humiliate the security apparatus.

 

 

Issues Pages: 
oldgoat

Moved to Activism

Unionist

I wish more people were.

 

6079_Smith_W

Great idea for a thread milo204, though if someone has a really new and surprising tactic in mind it is probably not such a good idea to post it here in public where the authorities are certain to read it.

 

vaudree

Figure that once they are aware of the strategy that they will be trying to come up with ways to prevent it or undermine it.  This is true in both sports and politics.

For example, black blockers say that they only target big corporate images that they leave the mom and pop businesses alone.  I doubt that the agents provacateurs leave the mom and pops alone.

Both black blockers and agents provocateurs don't like cameras showing their faces.  So how can we prove who did what?

Peaceful protestors want to document abuses.  But phones (which contain cameras) can also be used to detonate bombs (or so they say).  I think that Nintendo DSI also contains a camera.

al-Qa'bong

I'd have liked to see downtown Toronto abandoned by activists this weekend.  The sight of a vacant urban area, populated by nothing more than cops in riot gear guarding a fence, would have been a beautiful symbol of the brute force behind of the G20 and its sterilising effect on the world.

vaudree

What about the tactics the authorities use?  What is good for the goose ...

One strategy that the authorities came up with at the SPP meetings were to word new laws (or changes in laws) as regulations, rather than legislations so that one doesn't have to go through Parliament or the Legislature to get it passed.  These new laws that the Police are using that allow them to arrest anyone who doesn't show ID make use of this strategy.

What other strategies did you witness the police use?

Judging from the reports on TV, it seems that the police have borrowed strategies originally used either to herd cattle or to hunt buffalo.  Some people describing it make it sound like a scene from Lion King.

N.Beltov N.Beltov's picture

I like the tactic of exposing agents provocateurs.

But, in general, I agree with unionist. The best tactic is overwhelming numbers. Who gives a shit what the police do if there are tens or hundreds of thousands of citizens exercising their rights? Outnumber the enemy. That usually works.

Tommy B

al-Qa'bong wrote:

I'd have liked to see downtown Toronto abandoned by activists this weekend.  The sight of a vacant urban area, populated by nothing more than cops in riot gear guarding a fence, would have been a beautiful symbol of the brute force behind of the G20 and its sterilising effect on the world.

And instead of marching in downtown Toronto, march in the neighborhoods of the wealthy. How long do you think it would take the police to abandon the so called “world leaders” to protect the people who really call the shots?

Bacchus

N.Beltov wrote:

I like the tactic of exposing agents provocateurs.

But, in general, I agree with unionist. The best tactic is overwhelming numbers. Who gives a shit what the police do if there are tens or hundreds of thousands of citizens exercising their rights? Outnumber the enemy. That usually works.

 

Unless the numbers scare them enough to just start with the attacks instead of waiting for someone to start the ball rolling be it protestor or agents provocateurs

I like the idea of no protesters at all or entirely peaceful ones who hand over to the police (while filming it) ANYONE who does a violent/vandalistic act.
Um officers, we handed over ten guys who started throwing shit and breaking windows. Did you charge them all? Yes who are they? no why not?

NDPP

CP24 has been broadcasting an appeal by Police for people to send them their photos and vids of protesters and protest actions for identification, arrest and investigation purposes..

al-Qa'bong

Tommy B wrote:

al-Qa'bong wrote:

I'd have liked to see downtown Toronto abandoned by activists this weekend.  The sight of a vacant urban area, populated by nothing more than cops in riot gear guarding a fence, would have been a beautiful symbol of the brute force behind of the G20 and its sterilising effect on the world.

And instead of marching in downtown Toronto, march in the neighborhoods of the wealthy. How long do you think it would take the police to abandon the so called “world leaders” to protect the people who really call the shots?

That's a great idea.

SparkyOne

Bacchus wrote:

N.Beltov wrote:

I like the tactic of exposing agents provocateurs.

But, in general, I agree with unionist. The best tactic is overwhelming numbers. Who gives a shit what the police do if there are tens or hundreds of thousands of citizens exercising their rights? Outnumber the enemy. That usually works.

 

Unless the numbers scare them enough to just start with the attacks instead of waiting for someone to start the ball rolling be it protestor or agents provocateurs

I like the idea of no protesters at all or entirely peaceful ones who hand over to the police (while filming it) ANYONE who does a violent/vandalistic act.

Um officers, we handed over ten guys who started throwing shit and breaking windows. Did you charge them all? Yes who are they? no why not?


Becareful, I suggested just handing over PICTURES of people doing violent acts or Vandalisim and I got called all sorts of names here.
Narc, agent for the police. Collaborator. etc.
How many of those people breaking windows would have continuted to do so if a few people went up and yanked down the bandana's covering their face exposing it for the tons of cameras?
I really like your idea.

Fifi

Giving info to the cops after the fact is an entirely different tactic than self policing. Any successful DIY scene self polices (back when punk rock was more than nostalgia, we used to do this). Since it's clear that the police disguise themselves as "Black Bloc Anarchists" (don't you love a recognizable brand and premade identity complete with uniform?) to start violence then anyone starting violence should be viewed with suspicion and stopped, unmasked and documented by protestors. I don't care about the property being destroyed, I can about the people being hurt by these actions. The more documentation of agent provocateurs that happens, the more transparent the game being played by the powers that be becomes and the more obvious it is that anyone claiming to be revolutionary by breaking shit is just as reactionary and unthinking part of the oppressive machine as the police are. You have no alternatives to violence, you ARE the state. You have no original thoughts and just spout doctrine written a hundred years ago, you ARE a reactionary part of the state apparatus and complicit in the oppression of millions (even though, like the police, you continually claim to be a victim and look for a scapegoat instead of simply being self responsible).

 

So I think direct action by protesters to prevent violence in the moment, and documenting how protestors actually keep the peace (as is so often the case), is a very useful tactic. Look at how well it worked at Montebello - it worked so well we now have proof that the police plant cops dressed as anarchists to start riots. That was a beautiful example of collective action to protect the people from the police, which also made the police tactics and game transparent. The same thing should have been done in Toronto....I wonder whose idea it was to run interference so nothing could be documented? Who loses the most by being identified? Surely not an anarchist who is willing to put their body on the line for the cause...it really would be the cops who get unmasked as agent provocateurs who would be exposed not only to the world and media but would also be blowing their undercover status with the groups they're influencing to commit violence.

Tommy B

al-Qa'bong wrote:

Tommy B wrote:

al-Qa'bong wrote:

I'd have liked to see downtown Toronto abandoned by activists this weekend.  The sight of a vacant urban area, populated by nothing more than cops in riot gear guarding a fence, would have been a beautiful symbol of the brute force behind of the G20 and its sterilising effect on the world.

And instead of marching in downtown Toronto, march in the neighborhoods of the wealthy. How long do you think it would take the police to abandon the so called “world leaders” to protect the people who really call the shots?

That's a great idea.

Thanks for the compliment

We could also march on their country clubs, private schools and anywhere else they like to hang out.

 

I'm against making citizen's arrest on vandals or even taking their pictures. You may not agree with their tactics but remember they are on our side and handing them over to the enemy is treacherous even if the intent isn't malevolent.

Use reason with your comrades but don't betray them.

Green Grouch

What Fifi says. And should we need to give a reason for banadana yanking, it's clear: you cover your face, we assume you're a cop. Montebello proved the need to think like this and I think it's a great way to shut down the self righteous bullshit we get from some of the masked wonders who actually aren't cops. I can see doing this in the moment because I can trust my own eyes and (more importantly) those of my affinity group.It would need to be done in a group, though, and I for one would want some intervention training. I figure we need all the old union dudes n maids to offer that kind of quasi-picket line enforcement training, instead of being pressed into service as human shields between the cops and the real protesters.

Thread drift-- Re the cop call for stooges. Talk about an admission that their de facto martial law failed to stop anything truly stupid from happening. First they arrest 900, then they go to the public asking for rats. Well, I guess the people I saw thanking the cops and offering support yesterday can oblige, since I'm sure the so-called Black Bloc was in the jazz festival tent with them taking in the tunes. Wonder how many false leads will be generated with this call... thousands, I hope. -- end thread drift.

kropotkin1951

I think that all citizens should turn in every single person they see breaking a law in Canada.  Take pictures of speeders in cars first and foremost since the carnage on the roads is the biggest cause of death in our country. 

I pledge allegiance to the police and I'll help them in their efforts to enforce all the laws of this great colony. Pax Americana Forever.

I hope that the nice police officers are able to restrain themselves enough so that they only kick the shit out of anyone they think is a member of the black bloc and not get too excited and off them.

 

Tommy B

 

Continued from last post

 

My objection on practical grounds is that any attempt to make a citizen's arrest will escalate the violence and most liking result in a melee. Instead of portraying the majority of protesters as peaceful and law abiding citizens, the mainstream media will spin it as the protesters are a rioting mob.

Green Grouch

Removing someone's overly convenient anonymity is hardly doing the cops' work for them, Kropotkin. I figure removing a face covering is simply levelling the playing field. And if the coveree is a cop or otherwise paid by them or duped by them, so much the better. Unmasking kinda puts them in an awkward position, don't you think? If they're not the former, why the sudden need for a mask, especially since the people involved in the BS Saturday remained unmasked and used the rest of us as cover during the march, then used us as cover again to change clothes and cover up before running away to become State tools.

If the person is attempting to do something they think is worthwhile, they do not need to wait for a designated day of public protest to do it. And many do not. The glueing shut of ATMs is a case in point.So were the highly effective ARA actions in the 80 and 90s that outed white supremacists publicly and eventually drove them off the streets and out of our schools.

We've gone over this terrain many times, so forgive me if this is covered in other threads. If true members of the Black Bloc believe in what they are about, why wait for the cover of strictly non violent protesters to do it? I find that kind of behaviour pure chickenshit. And I don't think any of the *true* direct activists are cowards. Compare a Shawn Brant to Saturday's jerks, for example.

Which circles us back to asking who exactly is running around in convenient anonymity at these protests; why they choose this moment to do it; what their true agenda is; and what we do about it. Seems to me the only common denominator so far is: no more hiding your identity. Try it and we will collectively remove it.

As for  unmasking sparking melees-- I agree it's a risk, but we have the melees anyway and they're disempowering, dangerous, and useless.

Fifi

How are the people wearing masks breaking stuff in any way helping the situation or aligned with peaceful protesters? Particularly when they're actually supporting the police agenda and are either paid tools of the state or unwitting ones. Sure it's fun to blow stuff up - it's one reason why young men join the police forced and army, and religious terrorist groups, they enjoy the excitement of feeling powerful through violence too.

I'm not talking about people who put on a mask when tear gas is sprayed, I'm talking about people who create a media spectacle and then get all outraged that it's a media spectacle. (I mean, are you really that stupid or does it just make you hard to break stuff?) Though, of course, the cops were damn sure that they had all kinds of people (mainly girls from what I could see, talk about sexist division of labour!) running interference so their plants wouldn't get unmasked. If you watch the film from Montebello, you'll see that the real anarchists were quite willing to take down their masks and cooperate in unmasking cops masquerading as anarchists. This was my experience in Quebec too, where the "anarchists" weren't local to Quebec or Montreal. And the real anarchists at Montebello weren't the ones holding rocks and threatening violence, it was the faux anarchists. Fake anarchists - whether they're cops or just kiddies who like the prefab identity AnarchyTM gives them - work for the police state so aren't our allies. They don't want constructive change, they just want destruction and more war between ideological factions (thereby keeping the reactive duality that the state presents as "choice" - right vs left, etc - active). All of this gets in the way of discussing what we, collectively, can do together to protect our communities and our planet.

Fifi

And, yes, obviously unmasking should be something discussed and agreed upon as a tactic beforehand, and it is something that should be done collectively and by people who know how to intervene (though I wouldn't underestimate how cowardly these kids are when faced by a number of people, it's why they choose to do shit using peaceful protesters as cover).

6079_Smith_W

Tommy B wrote:

Use reason with your comrades but don't betray them.

 

I agree with you on that point. The fact is I think I have a responsibility to protect my comrades from theft or vandalism, just like I would expect them to look out for me. And I would try to reason with them and explain that these vandals are doing nothing to help the struggle for social justice.

 

 

Green Grouch

I agree totally with attempting to reason. But I've found it difficult to impossible in the moment; often people just move away, complete with swearing and threats. I think the sheer level of adrenaline or testosterone gets in the way and self righteousness combined with arrogance amps up both those natural highs.

Demasking changes the power dynamic. The mask can come off, then we can talk (whether that will happen or not is another question!). But I think it needs to be a non negotiable starting point. I should add that I'm not talking about removing a niqab or other religious clothing here, especially since I have not ONCE seen a masked woman of colour. Not once.

I contrast this with four gutsy young Indigenous people Saturday. They are always cop targets under the best of circumstances. Yet there they were, wearing Two Row wampum and Warrior flags, with one man wearing a ceremonial headdress, making them stand out  in a very obvious and proud manner. They were talking things through with other protestors on Queen while the White masked wonders in the background stomped on an abandoned bait cop car. I think that was the moment when I realised I had ceased supporting diversity of tactics as we've defined them for the past ten years or so.

That said, I feel I am expressing an ideal, not reality. Chasing people and pulling off their masks is easier said than done, and not exactly what I want to do and be seen doing all the way through a protest. Nor does it address other serious issues, like a total lack of agreed upon goals and common messaging.

Unionist

Here we see good people, gathered in a just cause - but without leadership and organization, unable to stop some assholes from hijacking that just cause. Only when we can organize and crush the provocations without (a) ignoring them; (b) justifying them; or (c) calling the cops for "help", will we be able to mount effective protests. Indeed, the numbers will massively increase when ordinary people are confident they will not be dragged into car-burning and window-smashing adventures:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s-5jeaIh4YE

kropotkin1951

I surrender you are all right.  The police state that we saw on display would not have happened if various groups of young people had not broken windows over the last ten years at protests across North America.  The benevolent state is not the problem, it is the tactics of the trouble makers. Without those trouble makers Harper would have listened to the voices of the people in the streets and proposed more spending on social services not deep slashing of programs as a global solution.  

Mea culpa!! I should have realized the power of window breaking.  You have made me see the light.  Such powerful provocations of the benevolent state need to be suppressed by citizens everywhere.  Damn those fucking anarchist with their needless violence, they have brought this great evil upon our heads.  There is everyone happy now.  

My neighbour is growing pot for his arthritis without a license I think I will report him because he is an anarchist and doesn't want to follow the proper procedure laid out by our democratic state.

remind remind's picture

Unionist wrote:
Indeed, the numbers will massively increase when ordinary people are confident they will not be dragged into car-burning and window-smashing adventures

This is very important actually, because that is the only way it can increase, unless it gets so bad that people en masse have no choice but to take to the streets or be slaves to a fascist  world governing body.

 

people across Canada should really be peacefully protesting in the streets in solidarity, until inquiries and resignations across the board happen, and I would like to think that labour unions would be getting on that....

remind remind's picture

kropotkin I do not think that is fair at all, as unionist specifically stated without calling the cops for help.

 

plus you just ratted your neighbour out and watch him/her get busted shortly, and know it was your loose lips here

Unionist

kropotkin1951 wrote:

I surrender you are all right.  The police state that we saw on display would not have happened if various groups of young people had not broken windows over the last ten years at protests across North America. 

Not sure who said that. Let me say it more clearly: We must learn to deal simultaneously with the enemy without and the enemy within.

The second thing is that social change will only be made by plain ordinary people. If you can't figure out how to mobilize them, might as well go home and stay there. Plain ordinary people hate assholes like the ones shown in the video above. You may not agree with plain ordinary people. But if you don't understand them, and cater to them, you will lose.

milo204

I think the First Nation example of having women be the ones who stand between the amped up men and the police, to be a great one.  or elders.  perhaps having them get between the bloc/cops and their targets would be good, or surrounding blocs to keep them in the protest but away from vandalism might be a good idea? as well as forming a line to separate cops from protesters, since almost all the riot cops are men that would make violent action extremely awkward.

 

Also, since they're all in uniform (bloc), how about confronting them to demand they respect the protest (by designated marshalls?), or hold their own separate action if that's what they want, but at least respect those that are here to protest because as others have said we may differ in tactcs but we all share many of the same views.

6079_Smith_W

remind wrote:

This is very important actually, because that is the only way it can increase, unless it gets so bad that people en masse have no choice but to take to the streets or be slaves to a fascist  world governing body.

I wouldn't expect things to get that desperate here anytime soon. After all, they do need to keep part of the world (OUR part) relatively fat and happy enough that we keep buying all their useless garbage, and there are plenty of people who wouldn't worry about fascism so long as they got to keep their 44 channels.

And yes, I am aware that there are some very hungry and very desparate people here too - a lot of them in rural areas and reserves where they CAN"T take to the streets en masse and overwhelm the police -  but it ain't like the rest of the world just yet.

SparkyOne

kropotkin1951 wrote:

 

My neighbour is growing pot for his arthritis without a license I think I will report him because he is an anarchist and doesn't want to follow the proper procedure laid out by our democratic state.

 

Narc ;)

 

The black block always hide in groups of paceful protestors. If the peaceful ones made sure that the black block wasn't welcome within their group maybe the police would feel more comfortable targeting the block and leaving the rest of us alone.

j.m.

So the MSM and the right now owns the term "black bloc". Looks like we need to reconsider that tactic.

E.Tamaran

One word: Vuvuzela!

remind remind's picture

you made sure that got preserved, eh sparky!

 

as far as I believe it, the 'black bloc' always was theirs, a who on the  left would label their group "black" anything?

j.m.

kropotkin1951 wrote:

I surrender you are all right.  The police state that we saw on display would not have happened if various groups of young people had not broken windows over the last ten years at protests across North America.  The benevolent state is not the problem, it is the tactics of the trouble makers. Without those trouble makers Harper would have listened to the voices of the people in the streets and proposed more spending on social services not deep slashing of programs as a global solution.  

Mea culpa!! I should have realized the power of window breaking.  You have made me see the light.  Such powerful provocations of the benevolent state need to be suppressed by citizens everywhere.  Damn those fucking anarchist with their needless violence, they have brought this great evil upon our heads.  There is everyone happy now.  

My neighbour is growing pot for his arthritis without a license I think I will report him because he is an anarchist and doesn't want to follow the proper procedure laid out by our democratic state.

It wasn't a problem of anarchy, krop, but a choice of tactics. We can be upset with the police state that has emerged but the choice to gear up to fight police and smash windows was exactly what was hoped for to delegitimize all our voices. Burning cop cars make great footage that works against our causes.

remind remind's picture

Harper must be awefully sure his  base is willing to go for a police state, eh! As is McGuinty, and the ON provincial CONs for that matter too.

6079_Smith_W

remind wrote:

Harper must be awefully sure his  base is willing to go for a police state, eh! As is McGuinty, and the ON provincial CONs for that matter too.

 

I'm not aware of any public outcry over the agreement a few years ago with the U.S. allowing our armed forces to cross into each others' countries in case of emergency; what happened last weekend is small compared to the implications of that. Sadly there are plenty of Canadians who would vote for that kind of state control if they thought it could keep things peaceful and orderly; it wouldn't even be fascism.

kropotkin1951

As for tactics I think that the unions should not allow anyone to march in their fucking useless parades unless they willingly sign a declaration saying they will be non-violent and  show their faces and have their pictures taken. They can then be issued nice official looking tags so the Sergeants at Arms can roust any non conformers.  

The reason this whole debate makes me livid is that anyone who has protested for decades knows that marching peacefully with a sign will never change Harpers mind.  Unionist knows it and so does everyone else who follows the global reach of this police state.

So in our frustration we blame the youth who don't have pensions and benefits to protect and are frustrated and angry that they live in a police state and no one is ever fucking polite to them.  Yeah lets have an endless debate about how they ruined it all for everyone.  What a a load of steaming bullshit? 

This has nothing to do with anarchy it has to with rage against the machine.  But here and everywhere else the supposed left picks up the police state media's story that it is the black bloc who causes the PIGS to be so bad.  Its bad enough that the police can say the "devil" made me do it. What makes it over the top is people here saying; "yeah stop making the police violent."  

Protests don't work get over it and stay home, just please stop implying that somehow it is not the police state that is the problem.

Tommy_Paine

I surrender you are all right.  The police state that we saw on display would not have happened if various groups of young people had not broken windows over the last ten years at protests across North America.  The benevolent state is not the problem, it is the tactics of the trouble makers. Without those trouble makers Harper would have listened to the voices of the people in the streets and proposed more spending on social services not deep slashing of programs as a global solution.

 

So, a few broken windows and strategically placed abandoned police cars burned, and that justifies unlawfull arrests now.   Interesting, where some would set the bar for "necessary" totalitarianism.  I hope, Kropotkin, you never get the government you deserve.

 

=======================

 

I think it may be premature to have a discussion about what works and what doesn't.    And, I don't think there can be such a determionation untill there's a concensus of what it was these protests meant to accomplish.

 

If it was to expose the inherent totalitarianism in Toronto Police, the Liberal Party of Ontario and the Conservative Party of Canada, then the protest was successfull, and I wouldn't change much.

Again, if it was to change the media coverage from photo ops and the blather speak of the G20 leaders to the protests, then I'm thinking it was probably a success, too.  Although, I haven't looked at all the MSM coverage to make that determination.

 

But, if the idea was to have a peacefull march where various groups are able to get their own messages out, then it was a failure.  

 

I think before you discuss tactics, you first have to determine what it is one hopes to accomplish.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

kropotkin1951

Tommy_Paine wrote:

I hope, Kropotkin, you never get the government you deserve.

 

=======================

 Just in case you missed the point of the quote above; (given its "subtlety") it is sarcasm.

So do I deserve a good or a bad government?  

I hope you reread this post and restate it because it seemed like you are judgmentally telling me I deserve a police state.  If that is what you intended then may I ask what would make you wish that I live in a police state? Is it moral fiber that is being tested for being deserving or some other unstated criteria?  

 

Tommy_Paine

 

Did I missundertand you?  Upon further reading, it appears that I did.

 

A thousand pardons, Kropotkin.   I should have gone with my gut;  it struck me as really odd in the first place.   This caps off a day of brain farts for me.

Tommy_Paine

 

 

Actually, upon even further thought, I think I will have a little self imposed hiatus until I can think a bit more clearly.  

 

2dawall

milo204 wrote:

 Anyone have any suggestions on updating or employing new tactics for future events?

 

1. how do we stop the snatch and grab raids on innocent people by riot cops.   

2. Civil Disobedience.  any suggestions for large scale civil disobedience beyond the act of public assembly.  There must be ways to clog things up with a group that large and make it difficult for police to do their work.

 

I am not sure if anyone is currently answering Milo204's original questions (athough I did like the idea of marching through rich neighborhoods). It would seem that the success that was Seattle has not been duplicated really. Does anyone have any new or different ideas? Maybe there is no point in demonstrating at G-8/G-20 events if nothing from progressives is being understood by those outside of our circles. 

We really ought to re-focus what the goal and intent of any particular action is to be.

Tommy B

 

To me there seems to be three issues here; one, should violence be used at these protests?

 

Two, what should the peaceful protesters do about the violence, if anything?

 

And three, what should the peaceful tactics be?

 

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

One, I'm of the opinion that the Gandhi approach should be taken at least under the current conditions.

 

Two, as I've already stated nothing. I'll summarize my reasons; I believe it is unethical to betray our fellow protesters to the authorities even if we disagree with their tactics. Also I think that it would be divisive to the movement to be seen cooperating with the people we are suppose to be protesting against.

 

And three, expanding the protest to areas closer to home of the elites. Also a world wide general strike on the date of the next meeting would be impressive in my opinion.

Tommy B

2dawall wrote:

I am not sure if anyone is currently answering Milo204's original questions (athough I did like the idea of marching through rich neighborhoods). It would seem that the success that was Seattle has not been duplicated really. Does anyone have any new or different ideas?

 

 

Well this may be nothing more than mental masturbation but here goes.

 

The police are essentially using the tactics of the phalanx. To defeat a phalanx you need to break it up. One could study military history to see how the ancients did it. Now I'm going to keep this non violent so I'll forgo the slings and arrows and cavalry charges or the modern equivalents of Molotov cocktails and motor vehicles.

 

One way to break up a phalanx and thus defeat it is with maneuver. This is hardy an easy task which is why maneuver is considered the peak of generalship. An idea that I have is for the protesters to assemble on a wide avenue with numerous narrow streets running off of it. When the assembled protesters are confronted by the police phalanx the protesters could break up into smaller groups each retreating down one of the narrower streets with the police in hot pursuit of course. The protesters could then circle back to regroup on the avenue and continue to march to their objective while the police try to regroup themselves.

 

If anyone is interested in this line of thought I'll try to come up with more ideas.

 

Cheers

Cytizen H

Fifi wrote:

How are the people wearing masks breaking stuff in any way helping the situation or aligned with peaceful protesters?

The people first march on Friday had a black bloc show up in solidarity. They had been asked beforehand to be there but not to engage in police provocation or vandalism They complied. After some organizers were grabbed, beaten by police and then released members of the black bloc broke ranks and formed a ring around our organizers to protect them. It was a beautiful display of solidarity. They also helped slow down the march when some of the differently abled people were getting left behind. The hippies just danced. I know who I prefer.

Cytizen H

Ooooh... i hate posting twice in a row, but I just found this and it's awesome.

Cop Car Burned! ALl Criticisms of Global Capitalism Rendered Moot

by Propaghandi

 

Quote:
in these situations, there is only so much futility a person can take before their rage can get the best of them and a burning cop car or a smashed bank window starts to look pretty appealing. yes, these are futile acts, but what do we expect people to do when they are treated like shit and the justice system does nothing to intervene on their behalf?

 

 

Freedom 55

kropotkin1951 wrote:

As for tactics I think that the unions should not allow anyone to march in their fucking useless parades unless they willingly sign a declaration saying they will be non-violent and  show their faces and have their pictures taken. They can then be issued nice official looking tags so the Sergeants at Arms can roust any non conformers.  

The reason this whole debate makes me livid is that anyone who has protested for decades knows that marching peacefully with a sign will never change Harpers mind.  Unionist knows it and so does everyone else who follows the global reach of this police state.

So in our frustration we blame the youth who don't have pensions and benefits to protect and are frustrated and angry that they live in a police state and no one is ever fucking polite to them.  Yeah lets have an endless debate about how they ruined it all for everyone.  What a a load of steaming bullshit? 

This has nothing to do with anarchy it has to with rage against the machine.  But here and everywhere else the supposed left picks up the police state media's story that it is the black bloc who causes the PIGS to be so bad.  Its bad enough that the police can say the "devil" made me do it. What makes it over the top is people here saying; "yeah stop making the police violent."  

Protests don't work get over it and stay home, just please stop implying that somehow it is not the police state that is the problem.

 

Kropotkin, thank you. Great post!

 

Now I'll respond to a few other posts.

 

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how about confronting them to demand they respect the protest (by designated marshalls?), or hold their own separate action

 

I'd say that once a group breaks-off on it's own it has become a separate action. Wasn't this always understood to be what was going to happen? There was an agreement that everyone would start off together in an attempt at solidarity, but it was widely known that once the main march started to turn away from the fence, there would be others who would attempt to continue on towards the fence.

 

 

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I have not ONCE seen a masked woman of colour. Not once.

 

Seriously? Well, I certainly have. And I have to tell you, this whole unmasking idea reeks of privilege. You can make all the assumptions you want about why someone would choose to mask up, and your assumptions may even be correct most of the time. But the fact is, you don't know why that person wants to conceal her/his identity. You don't need to wear a mask because you have nothing to hide? Well, bully for you! You can take your privilege and shove it!

 

 

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I figure we need all the old union dudes n maids to offer that kind of quasi-picket line enforcement training

 

Ah yes, like the thugs who grabbed me and threatened to throw me off a bridge after a protest against the Tory policy convention in Ottawa because I questioned their right to prevent a disabled person from using the stairs on the Mackenzie King Bridge. These are the people who are going to train you to unmask "cops"? Some of these union marshals are bigger 'cops' than the real cops.

Polunatic2

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The people first march on Friday had a black bloc show up in solidarity. They had been asked beforehand to be there but not to engage in police provocation or vandalism They complied.

If that's true, that's pretty selective respect for "diversity of tactics" given how Saturday went down. 

den cid

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1. how do we stop the snatch and grab raids on innocent people by riot cops. didn't seem that anyone was prepared for that. Is there any good ways to challenge that?

I will try to answer this question since most people aren't. One simple solution: If you don't want to get arrested, KEEP MOVING!

I was at the G20. I witnessed all the black bloc protestors disperse by about 5pm after the protest turned west on college st. Many other protestors continued to march to Queen's park. There were other scattered protests elsewhere. Protestors were trapped in many places or else had simply stopped marching and demonstrated in front of police. The people who tended to get arrested were sitting ducks, while I saw police retreat when they saw the roving property destroyers. The police were disorganized, and after getting reinforcements, they would march on passive protestors (and often bystanders) and assault them, arrest them, etc.

Later that night a protest at the novotel hotel met a similar fate. I wasn't at this one but I imagine it's because the protestors were standing in one place and got surrounded, and then arrested. A dance party held in front of the detention center was also standing still and got surrounded; the riot act was read and people dispersed, though some arrests were made egregiously for no reason.

On sunday a solidarity rally in front of the detention center was attacked by police for no reason and rubber bullets were fired. Again, protestors were static.

Since police are known to use excessive violence against passive protestors, maybe they should be told that police have a tendency to get angry and violent, especially when scared. I feel the police felt very threatened by everyone and so they attacked the passive for no real reason. They should probably be informed (especially when tensions are high) that there is no guarantee of their safety if they stand still and confront a line of police. Maybe small roving groups disrupting traffic everywhere in a city is a good way to confuse police and reduce incidents of arrest. Clearly even "freen speech zones" are now no longer safe places for protestors, after what happened in Toronto.

Doug

Green Grouch wrote:

What Fifi says. And should we need to give a reason for banadana yanking, it's clear: you cover your face, we assume you're a cop.

 

I completely agree. Unless there's reason to think tear gas canisters are about to be fired, there's no cause to mask up. Now how to unmask people tactfully, I don't know.

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