[Diggers350] Met wipes out entire 'FIT Watch' website
rchisnall at gmail.com
Tue Nov 16 19:20:54 GMT 2010
Back and even stronger!
Plus..... the whole site is still in Google's cache: here's a google search for 'police' on fitwatch.org.uk
as you can see, the cached copies are still intact, so it might be an
idea to download a few so there's a 'crowd backup'
On 16 November 2010 14:13, Tony Gosling <tony at cultureshop.org.uk> wrote:
> They've closed down the Fitwatch site, but we'll carry on resisting
> Suspending the Fitwatch website after we gave
> advice to student protesters looks like an attempt by police to prevent dissent
> Emily Apple
> guardian.co.uk, Tuesday 16 November 2010 13.01 GMT
> Fitwatch has been suspended by police after
> giving advice to students worried about facing
> arrest following the Millbank protests. Photograph: Lewis Whyld/PA
> Yesterday evening, I received a text from a
> friend asking if I knew the Fitwatch website had
> been suspended. I checked our email account and
> discovered it had been closed for a minimum of 12
> months on the behest of the Metropolitan police
> for "attempting to pervert the course of justice"
> for a post giving advice to students worried
> about facing arrest following the Millbank protests last week.
> Fitwatch was formed three years ago as a
> street-level response to intimidation and
> harassment from the forward intelligence teams
> (Fits), with tactics ranging from blocking
> cameras to printing numbers, names and
> photographs of known police officers on our blog,
> and offering advice to demonstrators about staying safe in protest situations.
> Through our research, and criminal trials for
> blocking police cameras, Fitwatch has been
> instrumental in bringing much of the information
> about protester databases and the domestic
> extremist units into the public domain.
> Our success in challenging the behaviour of Fits
> has obviously made us unpopular with the police,
> and there have been various attempts to
> intimidate us over the last three years.
> However, the closing of our website is a new
> direction with worrying implications for bloggers
> everywhere. Fitwatch has been highly critical of
> policing strategies, and only a few hours before
> the site was taken down published a piece
> criticising the way the police have been seeking
> to capitalise on the protests to justify further
> repression and to avoid cuts in their budgets.
> This is a highly suspicious attempt at preventing
> dissent and it must be resisted.
> Unfortunately for the police, this is already
> happening. The offending post has been spreading
> rapidly around the internet since last night, and
> the support we've received has been phenomenal.
> This is not the end of Fitwatch – we will carry
> on resisting intimidatory policing and fighting for the rights of protesters.
> Last Fitwatch post before the site was suspended
> Fitwatch | 16.11.2010 03:23 | Public sector cuts | Repression
> Whilst we strongly suspect it was our advice to
> student protesters which led to the Met police
> contacting our host to suspend our site, this was
> the last article posted on the site.
> Police seek to capitalise on student to justify
> further repression and their own budgets.
> Although the actions of the students last week were inspiring and
> empowering, it should come as no surprise the media savvy police are
> using it as an ideal opportunity to both fight back against cuts to
> their budgets and to counter the recent bad press regarding protest
> The NCDE domestic extremist units claim to have
> suffered in the cuts. Former head of NCDE, Anton
> Setchell has retired, and head of NETCU, Steve
> Pearl has been given the boot, and both have been
> replaced by a cheaper, junior model - Detective
> Chief Supt Adrian Tudway. Steve seems particularly upset about getting
> sacked and has been whining to the Telegraph
> about how, if he was still running the units,
> their intelligence on the riots would have been better.
> As usual, he is talking nonsense. The police
> didn’t predict the disorder because it wasn’t
> planned; the march wasn’t hijacked. I read the
> same websites as the cops, I know lots of
> activists, the intelligence we all had before the
> demo would have been similar. Yes, there were
> rumours of civil disobedience, and autonomous blocs, but
> this is true of every major demonstration. It
> would certainly have been true on the entirely
> peaceful February 15 Iraq demo, and there was no
> particular reason to believe this would be any different.
> This is a desperate attempt by an unpopular unit
> to appear relevant and we must not be fooled.
> NCDE are bleating about cuts when only a few
> weeks ago they were squandering money sending Ian
> Caswell to Plymouth to monitor and photograph Trident Ploughshares pacifists.
> The students who occupied Millbank are not
> domestic extremists, they are angry, brave and
> passionate people who care about what this
> government is doing to the country. They have
> grown up witnessing the futility of being herded
> from A to B and listening to the platitudes of irrelevant politicians.
> Ordinary people are angry with even a Daily Star
> poll showing the majority in favour of the
> students rioting. The fight back is on, and no
> amount of intelligence on the usual suspects from
> a redundant unit is going to make a difference.
> +44 (0)7786 952037
> "Capitalism is institutionalised bribery."
> "The maintenance of secrets acts like a psychic
> poison which alienates the possessor from the community" Carl Jung
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