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This is perfect occasion for the governing 'Socialists' and 'liberals' to push police state measures in advance. There has been discussion of a general permit to police to use rubber bullets. More alarmingly, as a bizarre 'solution' to the police 'mistakes' of last year that non-protesters were beaten up and arrested too, passers-by have been 'warned' in advance that they are subject to police action.

It's interesting that this is exactly the atmosphere and the rumors (rubber bullets, no bystanders etc)  that are circulating in Greece as the (massive) student protests over proposed university reform continue for the third month (actually for 9 months on and off). There has been a frightening display of police brutality, probably unprecedented in scale since the days of the dictatorship, against what is only on the surface an education-related uprising and has many of the characteristics of a youth-revolt (yes, I know, I should have posted a diary about this). Today was the big demonstration day everyone was afraid of, but Mr. Putin's presence here for the signing of a big pipeline deal, might have discouraged large scale police violence...

Here, of course, it's the (beyond-the-socialists) Left that's marching with the demonstrators and seems to support the protests ideologically (but only up to a a point).

I wonder if harsh police-state measures are part of some sort of paneuropean understanding as to how social unrest should be dealt with, or simply a case of an unorganized convergence of repressive measures, given the general economic path we're all heading along on...

The road of excess leads to the palace of wisdom - William Blake

by talos (mihalis at gmail dot com) on Thu Mar 15th, 2007 at 12:26:11 PM EST
I tend to the latter opinion.

(yes, I know, I should have posted a diary about this)

Indeed I was hoping that we'll get a diary on those protests from you :-)

Mr. Putin's presence here for the signing of a big pipeline deal

And that would be worth another diary (one linking up neatly with my previous).

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Thu Mar 15th, 2007 at 04:48:12 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I would guess at semi-organized convergence.

For a while protests against EU summits and G8 meetings has been met with harsher measures. I would be surprised if the police in one country holding such a meeting do not discuss their strategis with police from countries that has recently had meetings.

In Sweden it has recently surfaced that during the EU summit in Gothenburg 2001, swedish police acted on faulty intelligence provided by american services. Many times the leadership overruled agreements that had been concluded in a planning group consisting of demonstration organisers, local police and city administrators. Any provocation was perceived in the worst possible manner. Demonstrators - already not very trusting of the police - interpreted in their turn it as a crackdown and voilà: riots.

Sweden's finest (and perhaps only) collaborative, leftist e-newspaper Synapze.se

by A swedish kind of death on Thu Mar 15th, 2007 at 07:16:36 PM EST
[ Parent ]
In Sweden it has recently surfaced that during the EU summit in Gothenburg 2001, swedish police acted on faulty intelligence provided by american services.

Diary!

I would be surprised if the police in one country holding such a meeting do not discuss their strategis with police from countries that has recently had meetings.

I rather think that the opposite is true: what we saw was a series of panic reactions of the powers-that-be to a challenge they were unprepared for, and previous events in other countries were considered only via the media (e.g. police's and politicians' views of 'the enemy' included the strong distortions of the media). I emphasize that by panic reaction, I do not exclude consciously planned subversive actions, above all what Italian police did in Genoa 2001.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Fri Mar 16th, 2007 at 01:56:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]
My guess is that a lot of the procedures might have been planned in advance of the 2004 Olympics.
by Upstate NY on Fri Mar 16th, 2007 at 10:00:35 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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