MILNEWS.ca News Highlights – 8 Dec 10

  • Tanks from the 12e Régiment blindé du Canada are covering Vandoos in Zangabad, and head off some ammo for the Taliban Info-machine“…. Farmers in this otherwise bucolic hamlet, long known for its support of the insurgency, vented their frustrations at the convoy of vehicles as it cut a swath across their land, making way for the area’s first major roadway.  “I was never told about this,” Abdul Rahman, a local land owner whose grape field is being cut in half by the new gravel road, said through a translator.  The road is to be eight metres wide, but the disruption is far wider: to discourage the Taliban from planting bombs, engineers have cleared 25 metres of land on either side of the project.  Rahman threw up his hands as mine-sweeping tanks churned up the field in front of him. “What am I going to do with that?” he railed. “They might as well take the whole field.”  It was up to the district governor to consult with residents, but Rahman and several other landowners who turned up at a meeting with coalition officers said they weren’t told the exact route.  Rahman said he tried in vain to convince engineers not to bisect his land, and even offered to allow his personal mosque to be demolished if it meant a different route.  The officer commanding the route clearing was mortified at the request and the optics it would have presented for the locals, to say nothing of the propaganda bonanza for the Taliban.  “It’s weird, but quite frankly I don’t want to have Canadian soldiers being seen levelling a mosque when there’s a clear option to go somewhere else,” said Maj. Eric Landry, the commander of the tank squadron ….” Good call.  Some CF-generated copy of the Afghan push supported by the Vandoos and others here and here, with a Wikipedia page already started on OP BAAWAR.
  • Congratulations Robert & Heather! A soldier returning from duty in Afghanistan proposed to his longtime girlfriend at a Windsor, Ont., airport on Monday. Sgt. Robert Bialkowski went to great lengths to ask his girlfriend of eight years (Heather Greene) to marry him in front of a cheering crowd of friends and family …. After a hello kiss, Bialkowski handed Greene an apple and got down on one knee. Her response: “Of course!” Friends and family shouted “It’s about time!” …. “
  • How Canadian cash is helping keep Afghan jail guards on the job“…. A Sarpoza prison guard’s life away from the job is exceedingly dangerous. One of the warden’s lieutenants was killed in November, two guards have been targeted and killed in recent months, and night letters and threats are common.  It’s why the warden is praising a Canadian initiative giving his staff better pay in recognition of the risks. The threats and the fear were having a debilitating effect on Sarpoza’s staffing levels at a time when Correctional Services Canada mentors are preparing to exit Kandahar in the new year.  “You feel for them … but we were training people and they’d quit,” said Ian Chinnery at the Camp Nathan Smith reconstruction team in Kandahar City ….”
  • Chaplains as religious mediators on the battlefield? The idea was discussed at a recent conference in Ottawa“…. Maj. Steve Moore, a United Church padre, organized the low-key meeting to probe the possibility of making connections between military chaplains and religious leaders in communities in the midst of the conflict.  “I’m getting some traction,” he said from his office at Saint Paul University. “It’s incremental.”  Moore began thinking about this project in Bosnia in 1993 with the Second Royal Canadian Regiment battle group, living in a compound amid the communities of Roman Catholic Croats, Muslim Bosniaks and Orthodox Serbs.  “We weren’t in the conflict, but we weren’t far from it. It was nasty. For me, those experiences never left me. I had to do something.”  He worked with his Roman Catholic counterpart to get to know the religious leaders in Sarajevo. “In fact, they made the first move, inviting us for dialogue. We were invited into their homes.”  Political leaders had co-opted religion, inflaming the population. This left religious leaders torn. “They were worried about the kind of life they would leave for their children. Would (the children) think that religion was just a means of war?”  At first, the padres met only with the Muslim mufti, who oversaw 60 mosques, and the Roman Catholic priest. The Serbs weren’t interested. But when the tour of duty changed, the next two chaplains were able to build on what the first two had done. In September of 1993, all three religious groups, Serbians, Muslims, and Catholics, held an interfaith celebration for peace. Here in Canada, that would hardly be noticed. But there, in the midst of religiously fuelled war, “it was unprecedented,” said Moore ….”
  • Some recent research indicates that American female war vets “have a suicide rate nearly three times greater than the general population of women”.  How’s this number compare to Canadian stats? We don’t keep them right now, but should know something soon, according to a Veterans Affairs Canada spokesperson responding to a question from Postmedia News“Unfortunately we do not have data similar to that used in the American university publication you referred to. Statistics regarding suicide rates amongst Canadian Veterans are not currently kept. However, Veterans Affairs Canada (VAC) and the Canadian Forces have commenced a “Life After Service Study”, to examine transition from the Canadian Forces to civilian life. One of the study components will have Statistics Canada link VAC and Canadian Forces data on CF members with service from 1972 to 2006 (2006 is the end-date as it matches the latest data in the national mortality database). This study will allow VAC to compare suicide rates between Veterans and the general Canadian population. Data is expected in early 2011 ….” More from National Public Radio in the U.S. about this research.
  • This may be disappointing news to video game developers, but speaking at a public forum during a conference on special forces in Kingston this week, the head of Canada’s special forces says special operations work is NOT like the games“…. (Brig.-Gen. Michael) Day, who has been attached since it stood up in 1993, said the unit, described as a made-in-Canada response to terrorist threats and issues of national security requiring a nimble and highly trained force of specialists.  But it is not, as portrayed in wildly popular movies and video games, a collection of rogue operatives creating mayhem and destruction behind enemy lines with neither the knowledge or support of their commanders. With two teenage boys, Day is quite familiar with the popular portrayal.  “Very few special operations can be conducted without the support of conventional forces,” Day said, and noted that due to the high tempo and close relationship between special and conventional units in Afghanistan, army commanders understand and appreciate where his unit fits into the puzzle in a way they may not have a decade ago.  Day stressed that special forces are a complement to the conventional army and vice-versa ….” And how about calls for more public oversight for the special ops units? ” …. “Isn’t it ironic that on the very day some are calling for more oversight, I am standing up and introducing a public forum like this,” he said.  “And I certainly welcome the idea of having conversations about oversight.” …. “We’re trying to find a middle ground, somewhere between I’m not telling you anything and I’m standing here naked in front of you,” said Day ….”
  • News flash – Postmedia News notices women with niqabs serving in CF“Wafa Dabbagh is many things. She is a tiny, bubbly bundle of energy who loves Zumba fitness. She prays five times a day, keeps an immaculate home and bakes a cake for her beloved neighbours each weekend. She has a bachelor’s degree, a master’s in business administration and a cancer diagnosis, the last of which she treats like a bothersome cold. Dabbagh is also a pioneer, the first member of the Canadian Armed Forces — and still only one of a handful — to wear a hijab, the Muslim headcovering for women. After almost 15 years in the naval reserves, she is now a lieutenant-commander, the equivalent of a major in the army. Dabbagh is certified to shoot a C7 rifle and a 9 mm pistol, and is in the process of studying to qualify for promotion to a command position. On Monday at Rideau Hall, Gov. Gen. David Johnston awarded the first Operational Service Medals to 50 recipients, including Dabbagh, who was recognized for her participation in Operation Proteus, a Canadian training mission in Jerusalem ….” One day, it won’t matter whether she’s wearing a niqab or not – a job well done is a job well done, full stop..
  • Roger Clement, who said he firebombed an RBC bank machine in Ottawa “as a partial protest toward the bank’s policies toward the Olympics and the Alberta tarsands” gets 3 years, 6 months for the firebombing. More from the Canadian Press, the BBC and CBC.ca.  And it didn’t take long for the Liberals and NDP to put the boot in, either.
  • Streamlining terrorism trials, better Witness Protection Program, hunting down terrorist money better and improving co-operation between cops and intelligence agencies. Those are some of the highlights of Canada’s new plan (more detail here) to prevent another Air India disaster.
  • Taliban Propaganda Watch: Taliban Info-machine’s English-language site is back with claims of attacks in Kandahar and Zabul.

MILNEWS.ca News Highlights – 7 Dec 10

  • First, a correction:  Remember the Canadian contract listing where the CF is looking for help to improve storytelling in yesterday’s update?  It seems I put the wrong link in – this is the correct one.  Many thanks to Richard, who drew my attention to this.
  • Vandoos into Zangabad: “Taliban fighters in the notorious village of Zangabad aren’t about to just melt away, the commander of NATO forces in southern Afghanistan warned Monday as Canadian troops officially took control of the long-standing insurgent stronghold.  “Yeah, they’re going to fight. This is their home turf,” Maj.-Gen. James Terry told The Canadian Press at a patrol base in southwestern Panjwaii, the troubled district where a combined force of coalition and Afghan soldiers is pushing forward.  So far, though, “it’s going real well,” Terry said ….”
  • Canada sending medicine, medical equipment to Afghanistan “…. the Honourable Beverley J. Oda, Minister of International Cooperation (CIDA), highlighted the first phase of Health Partners International Canada’s (HPIC) Capacity Building and Access to Medicines (CBAM) project, a five-year project that will provide Afghans with reliable access to medicine and medical supplies ….  For more information on the Capacity Building and Access to Medicines project visit www.hpicanada.ca and www.Afghanistan.gc.ca ….”
  • The Globe & Mail manages an e-mail interview with the commander of Canada’s Special Operations Forces, Brigadier-General Mike Day – this on the alleged lack of accountability we hear suggested from some out there“Q:  There’s nothing you’re doing that the Prime Minister wouldn’t know about, right?  A:  All the senior leaders hear what we’re doing. This idea that nobody knows – it’s [expletive]. ” More from the Globe here.
  • Taliban Propaganda Watch Taliban’s sites are down for now, but not before you get to see lies about Canadian deaths.
  • Remember this little bank firebombing incident around the G8/G20, aimed at sending a message to “resist the trampling of native rights, of the rights of us all, and resist the ongoing destruction of our planet”? Someone’s pleaded guilty, and now he’s about to be sentenced.
  • The government is expected to announce today a plan/strategy to prevent another Air India bombing from happening: “The Honourable Vic Toews, Canada’s Public Safety Minister, and the Honourable Jason Kenney, Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism will release the Air India Inquiry Action Plan ….” More from the Globe & Mail here and Postmedia News here.
  • So, what’s the former head of the Military Police Complaints Commission, Peter Tinsley, up to these days? Running for office, it seems: “…. Peter Tinsley, the former chief of the Military Police Complaints Commission — one of several public servants who have parted ways with Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s government — announced on Monday that he’ll be the Liberal candidate for the Ontario riding of Prince Edward-Hastings in the next election.  And Liberal Leader Michael Ignatieff is hinting that Tinsley may not be the only person the Liberals will be recruiting from among the swelling ranks of public servants and whistleblowers who have publicly sparred with Harper’s government.  “Will he be the only one? Watch this space,” Ignatieff said ….”

G8/G20 Security Highlights, 23 Jun 10

“If They’re Not With Us, They’re Against Us”

George W. Bush?  Joseph Stalin?  Kim Jong-Il?

No, anti-globalization protesters – this, via Twitter:

CRG police, agent provocateurs squad or just infiltrators? – http://is.gd/cZzrn #g20report #g20

And who’s this evil CRG?  Toronto Police’s Community Relations Group – more here at YouTube.  And what do these capitalist tools do?

…. The group works under the authority of the RCMP led Integrated Security Unit and are in place to provide timely and accurate official information to citizens affected by the G20 event.  Their mandate extends to reaching out to activist and protest groups in advance of the G20 Summit to facilitate lawful and peaceful protests ….

Volunteers.  In Canadian streets.  With information.

Scary.


We Want Freedom (But Just for Us)!

A not-so-welcoming message on one blog attributed to a group calling itself “Fire.Works.For.Prisons”

FWFP collective will not be communicating with media before, during, or after the June 27th event.

Media (video, sound recording, photos) that covers individuals without their consent will be confronted.

Individuals whose ideas are found in the intentions of this demo are welcome, representatives of media are not.

Ouch!


“Firebomb suspects seek bail before G20”

Two of the three men charged in connection with the firebombing of a Glebe Bank want bail hearings by the end of the week, soon enough that they could be released before the start of this weekend’s G20 summit in Toronto.  Clad in orange jail-issue coveralls, Roger Clement, Claude Frederic Haridge and Matthew Morgan-Brown made a brief appearance by video in an Ottawa courtroom Monday. All three were arrested Friday in connection with the May 18 firebombing of a Bank Street Royal Bank branch that caused more than $500,000 in damage. An anarchist group, Fighting for Freedom Coalition-Ottawa, later took responsibility for the bombing, which was recorded in a “catch me if you can” video posted online. The group also warned that its members would be “present” at the G20 summit ….


Anti-Capitalists:  Rubber Bullets = Militarization of Police

….. The ARWEN represents yet another weapon that intimidates and violates the right of the general public to exercise democratic dissent. However, police continue to employ jargon in an effort to legitimize the use of weapons developed by military forces to be used against civilians in the streets of Canadian cities. When speaking about the possible damage inflicted by ARWEN ammunition on the human body, Ontario Provincial Police Constable Mel Tourigny expressed that, “It’s realistic to accept that there very possibly could be an injury to a person being struck by this projectile, but it’s a less serious injury because it’s deemed a non-lethal [weapon].” ….


We Know Who’s the First Arrest of the Summit Season

The Integrated Security Unit confirmed it arrested Mark Corbiere, an aboriginal-rights activist from the Kitchener-Waterloo area, and charged him with one count of marijuana possession.

Mr. Corbiere was initially pursued by police after allegations a man had broken into a facility at Allan Gardens, said Sergeant Nathalie Deschênes, a spokeswoman for the ISU.

(….)

Mr. Corbiere, quoted in news reports as being a representative from M’Chigeeng First Nation, is a member of a Facebook group called Olympic Resistance Network, and has been listed on websites as leader for the network’s Ontario chapter.

Here’s his Tweet confirming his arrest:

Being detained on gerard/mutual about 7cops #g20 1:50 PM Jun 21st via txt


I Kid, I Kid…

It appears security officials have to set the record straight on a recently-set up Twitter account:

Over the last few weeks, a Twitter feed called G20Security has sent out more than 119 entertaining tweets poking fun at the preparations for the Toronto summit. The With 142 followers, the Tweeter’s bio says only “Welcome. Please have your documents ready” and links to the official G8-G20 web site run by the government.

But Tim Burrows, of the Integrated Security Unit, says that not everyone realizes that the Twitter feed is satire. “Members of the public have actually called us and said ‘How can you be saying this stuff,'” he said. The police are big fans, he said, and read the feed every day. “It’s spectacular,” said Burrows. “It’s just hilarious.” But they have asked the person or people behind the feed to add something to their bio saying that the site is satirical ….

Some tidbits from @G20Security:

So tiring to keep pointing out how important all the security is. Thank god for stock PR phrases like ‘Somalia-like haven of chaos’ #g20

Teargas is NOT life-threatening. If #G20 allowed instant replay half these protesters would get red-carded for diving.

and my personal fave:

We asked @anarchists to pre-register w riot squads, just as delegates do w/ security. But response to dialogue is less than we hoped #G20


Bang Bang!

Canadian police launched a hunt Tuesday for a small black car believed to be involved in shots fired in a restricted zone where G20 leaders will meet this week in downtown Toronto, police told (Agence France-Presse).  Off-duty officers heard the shots ring out at 3:30 am near King and Simcoe Streets, Toronto police Constable Wendy Drummond said.  “A small black vehicle was seen leaving the scene,” she said.  No one was injured, and “there is no information at this point to suggest that it had anything to do with the G20,” she said.  “It appears the shots were fired into the air,” she added. Shell casings were found at the scene ….


For more from all sides,
check out the page o’ links here.

G8/G20 Security Highlights, 21 Jun 10

A bit more information is coming out about the men charged with the Ottawa bank firebombing, via the Ottawa Citizen:

…. Police arrested Claude Frederic Haridge, 50, on his way to work near Hunt Club Road Friday. Haridge, an engineer, has been building circuit boards since he was 14, when he used to salvage parts from the garbage and cart them home in a little wagon …. Haridge, described as a friendly neighbour, is a former student of ex-University of Ottawa physics professor Denis Rancourt who taught a controversial course on activism before he was let go by the university. In 2007, the university de-registered twin 10-year-old boys who had enrolled in Rancourt’s Science in Society class. Haridge, a fellow student, rose to the defence of the twin boys. He wrote letters to the school in support of his young classmates. Haridge has also sent letters to newspapers critical of government. And he has demonstrated against Israeli attacks on Palestinians ….

Roger Clement, 58, was also arrested and faces arson charges. Clement is a retired public servant, whose last job was at the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) …. The Citizen tracked down and met with Clement on May 26. The late-night meeting took place on Bank Street and Clement arrived with an entourage, which included a third firebombing suspect, Matthew Morgan Brown, the youngest of the trio, and believed to be in his early 30s. Morgan Brown is a well-known activist. He has been arrested during prior protests at the 2007 Montebello Summit and during a 2004 visit to Ottawa by former U.S. president George W. Bush …. Until the retired public servant was arrested, he spent some of his free time at a coffee shop in Chinatown, considered a meeting place for Ottawa’s anti-establishment network, which protests big business, world government summits, and cuts to welfare ….


On a related note, a bit of alleged “solidarity action” in Montreal (PDF of post and comments at Scribd.com here) to show support for the three arrested in Ottawa (highlights mine):

Yesterday morning (Friday) the police arrested 3 people in Ottawa, saying that they are our dear ones, the FFFC. Yesterday evening, we broke windows and wrote our solidarity on the wall of the RBC on Sherbrooke, corner Victoria. Innocent or guilty, we are in solidarity with the arresteds. Fuck the banks. Fuck the police. Fuck the prisons. No repression without response. Solidarity means attack.

-The Support Committee – Night Tendency
[Keep it simple my friends…]

Hier matin la police a arrêté 3 gens à Ottawa, disant qu’ils sonts nos chéris, le FFFC. Hier soir, on a cassé des vitres et écrit notre solidarité sur le mur du RBC sur Sherbrooke, coin Victoria. Innocents ou coupables, on est solidaire avec les arrêtés. Fuck les banques. Fuck la police. Fuck les prisons. Aucun répression sans réponse. La solidarité, ca va dire l’attaque.

Hmm, can’t see why things like the highlighted bits would worry anyone – just peaceful protest, right?


Some security guards nervous? (Highlights mine)

…. Tear gas, rocks and eggs filled with urine are only some of the safety risks guards take if they go into work next weekend. Sunil Ram, CEO Executive Security Services International – a private firm working both summits, has spoken with security guards who have voiced uncertainties. He said some have scheduled their vacation time during the summit, while others might call in sick. “They just don’t want nothin’ to do with it. It’s just going to be too volatile of a situation, very unpredictable,” he said. “They don’t want any part of it because of the unknown factors. So, they just want to stay home.” ….


What appears to be a new (first Tweet available posted Saturday), pretty active Twitter feed from @FortressToronto is sharing pretty detailed information:

@ericpartington: Lovely, at last count 36 opp bike cops have gone by with 10 paddy wagons. Makes #g20 feel really good” #FortressToronto

@640k: Cool geotagged gallery of #g20 surveillance cameras in Toronto: http://bit.ly/g20cams” #FortressToronto

@proserv: Toronto’s Summit fence. Massive police presence. #cdnpoli http://twitpic.com/1yji6k” #FortressToronto


Speaking on the Sunday news shows, Canada’s Treasury Board President Stockwell Day puts it into perspective:

“I think it shows the unfortunate power that a small group of thugs has,” Day told CTV’s Question Period on Sunday. “And when I’m talking about thugs I’m talking about thugs, I’m talking about the anarchists and the violent groups who have already indicated that they’re going to be there and they’re going to cause trouble.”


For more from all sides,
check out the page o’ links here.

G8/G20 Security Highlights, 20 Jun 10

Rabble.ca has posted this assessment of who’s going to be protesting:

So here I was sitting in the newly opened convergence space hosted by the Toronto Community Mobilization Network at 1266 Queen Street West (Toronto) and we’re all drinking tap water and listening to some great tunes and I’m thinking: yup, look at us scary anarchists doing scary things like spoken word performances, serving food to each other and napping quietly in the corner.

Yes, polite society should be very afraid! Here come the Berserkers tearing young saplings from the ground and whipping them at the police …..

In fact, we are so scary that the United States has issued a travel advisory for next weekend stating, “even demonstrations that are meant to be peaceful can become violent and unpredictable. You should avoid them if at all possible.”

I mean, according to the police – who of course will all be wearing their kid gloves during the demonstrations and cannot be blamed if police riots break out; hmmmm….I mean, wait a minute…. aren’t they called POLICE riots and not PEOPLE riots for a reason? ….

Further reinforcement of the “it’s not our fault if there’s violence” message?


Some of the initial media coverage of the Ottawa Police Service arrest and charging of three men in connection with the RBC bank firebombing in Ottawa is starting to use the “T” word:

…. “Their actions do speak for themselves and their willingness to post it publicly is alarming as well,” said Ottawa Police Chief Vern White at a news conference on Saturday morning.  White also continued labelling the incident as an act of domestic terrorism, and said he was “confident” the Crown may still end up with terrorism charges.  RCMP assistant commissioner Francois Bidal appeared to suggest more charges were still possible.  “We will leave no stone unturned in uncovering the evidence we have before us now,” he said.  But Lawrence Greenspon, the lawyer representing Clement, criticized those remarks.  “Pre-trial comments that attempt to characterize offences are not helpful to the administration of justice,” he said.  “There’s no talk of terrorism by anybody except our Chief of Police,” Greenspon said, adding that the charges laid so far relate strictly to property damage …. (CTV.ca)

…. Police say the investigation continues and are determining whether they can lay charges under the Anti-Terrorism Act. The law has been used only a handful of times since Parliament passed it in 2001.  Terrorism charges can only be laid with the consent of the federal Attorney General, and police wouldn’t say whether they’ve initiated conversations to this end …. (Globe & Mail)

…. Asked whether he continued to consider the act domestic terrorism, White said: “I do stand by that label.”  But he added that determination is the investigative responsibility of the RCMP …. (Canadian Press)

…. In the past, Chief White has characterized the firebombing as domestic terrorism, and he stood by that description Saturday. But he said no terrorism charges have been laid so far, and it will be up to the RCMP to decide whether they should be …. (CBC.ca)

All are to be considered innocent until proven guilty in our system, and I’m happy to let the police and courts do their thing.  Here’s how the Criminal Code of Canada defines “terrorism”, and here’s my quick-and-dirty assessment of the law in light of events we read/hear at Army.ca.

I await with interest how the legal process unfolds.


For more from all sides, check out the page o’ links here.


G8/G20 Security Highlights, 19 Jun 10

Suspects arrested, charged with RBC bank machine firebombing last month – this, from the Ottawa Police Service:

…. three men have been charged as follows:

Roger Clement 58 years old, of Ottawa
RBC Arson – 18th of May 2010
Arson Causing Damage
Possession of incendiary material
Use explosives with intent to cause property damage
Mischief

(….)

Matthew Morgan – Brown 32 years old, of Ottawa
RBC Arson – 18th of May 2010
Arson Causing Damage
Possession of incendiary material
Use explosives with intent to cause property damage
Mischief

Claude Haridge, 50 years old, of Ottawa
RBC Arson – 18th of May 2010
Careless storage / handling of ammunition
Fail to comply with undertaking ….

They’re all back in court later this month more from the Canadian Press and here at the National Post.


It’s “Protest School” in Toronto – this from CTV.ca, emphasis mine:

A counter-summit in Toronto meant to challenge the G8 and G20 was dubbed “protest school” by organizers on Friday, as they shied away from denouncing violent action by demonstrators …. “People protest in various ways. Again, we’re simply organizing a conference,” said Dylan Penner, a committee member at the summit and media officer for the Council of Canadians …. While classes such as “direct action training” and “digitally mediated surveillance: rights and resistance” are on the agenda, the committee said the event is meant to be a peaceful weekend of learning …. (Marya Folinsbee, the co-ordinator of the People’s Summit) was a…. quick to point out that many of the workshops encouraged peaceful protest, such as “communication skills for activists,” which teaches protesters “how to de-escalate an angry movement.” But there are also workshops planned for debating and discussing a “diversity of tactics” during the G20 and G8 summits …. “It is really cloudy, and it is really complicated to work in solidarity with each other when these issues are still on the table,” she added ….

So, condemning violence and vandalism is “cloudy” is it?  Interestingly, the organizers of the protests have gone as far as developing a policy for dealing with those who want to fight the man, but may have been accused or convicted of sexual assault – one line stands out for me:

Perpetrators of Sexual Assault, Abuse and Harassment are not welcome in G8 & G20 Resistance Spaces!!!

I’d be happy to hear from anyone who can explain why such people “are not welcome” in the crowd, but those who would commit violence and/or vandalism are.  Simple question.


Part of the CTV.ca article above mentions one of the message tracks being transmitted by protest organizers:

(Marya Folinsbee, the co-ordinator of the People’s Summit) accused “the state” of being the real perpetrator of violence, as she deflected questions about whether or not organizers of the counter-summit would hold protesters accountable during the G20 …. Penner said protesters have been demonized, and fear-mongering has made the public nervous about violence during the G8 and G20.  The committee for the People’s Summit also suggested violence in past summits has not come from protesters, but from agent provocateurs.  “The state is, in fact, doing criminal activity if they don’t rule out agents provocateurs,” said Christine Jones, co-chair of the Canadian Peace Alliance as she spoke at the news conference Friday ….

This is a message stream making its way out in a variety of ways recently – even picked up from the same news conference and shared by CBC.ca (note the same “money clip” from Christine Jones)

Activists and labour organizations are calling for Prime Minister Stephen Harper to rule out the use of agents provocateurs during the G8 and G20 summits.  Pointing to the 2007 Montebello summit of North American leaders, where Quebec police admitted that three of their officers disguised themselves as demonstrators during protests, the People’s Summit urged officials to prohibit any attempt to incite violence to justify what they dubbed a “billion-dollar boondoggle.”  Quebec police denied allegations they used the officers to instigate violence at Montebello.  “The state is, in fact, doing criminal activity if they don’t rule out agents provocateurs,” Christine Jones, co-chair of the Canadian Peace Alliance, said at the launch of the People’s Summit on Friday morning ….

The message gained a bit of traction this week when Syd Ryan, representing the Ontario Federation of Labour, said the same thing..

Are they planting seeds out there so that if/when violence occurs, it’ll already be embedded in people’s minds that it must be the cops’ fault?


QMI/Sun Media has this quick guide to the protest groups and what they seek.

A new spot to check out what other-than-mainstream “media” are sharing about the Summit protests, here at 2010.mediacoop.ca.  Apparently, any Flickr photo or Twitter post tagged with #g20report will automatically end up posted there.  I’ve added it to my list o’ “news of all kinds” links here.