IRAQ. Baghdad governorate. Karrada. July 9, 2016. Asal Ahmed, 4, is carried by her father at the scene of a massive suicide bomb attack that killed more than 320 people, making it the second most lethal suicide bombing in Iraqi history. Asal and her mother were badly burned as they shopped for the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Fitr. Karrada is one of Baghdad’s most religiously diverse districts, with a Shia majority and a significant Christian population made of various sects. ISIS claimed responsibility for the attack.
someone asked about protests, arrests, and safety, and it seems like something to be shared more generally,“. also i’m interested in how other cities handle protest arrests, and share my perspective that the women’s march may be one of the last safe and easy protests for a long time.
i’m 33, older than a lot of you, so I was very involved in anti-bush protests and Iraq war protests here in Portland. I can ONLY speak for Portland, Oregon. I got arrested the night we started bombing Iraq. We were blocking an intersection and a bridge, and the arrests took like five or six hours; the protests had been going on for hours prior.
When we sat down to block the intersection and the bridge, we intended to get arrested. USUALLY before an action like that word spreads, "we’re doing such and such thing, if you don’t want to be arrested leave now.” At the last BLM protest I went to, they tried to block another bridge. They’d kind of waited way too long and allowed the cops to box them in, but the word still went out thru the protest “we’re gonna try this thing, if you don’t want get arrested stay back.”
Then you do the thing. Sit at the intersection or take the bridge. If you’re planning on going for a bridge or the freeway, you have to get to access points before the cops. That was the big mistake BLM made, too much marching around in circles before the cops closed in and we got stuck in the circle and access points to freeways and bridges were cut off.
In 2003 we did the thing (blocking the bridge) and we were allowed to do so, the cops had been hanging back for much of the march, unlike last summer where they closed things off and waited for people to come within hours.
Once you’re at the spot that’s clogging things up, at a certain point they show up with paddywagons, noise grenades, &c.
Depending on the city and what’s been happening in the city, they will also show up with pepper spray, tear gas, and rubber bullets. The anti-bush protests I used to go to, PPB was always trigger happy with the bullets and pepper spray; at the first war protest they weren’t, for whatever reason. Not even noise grenades, they just let us sit and then started arresting us by midnight. so don’t take any response for granted.
OFTEN they will tell you to disperse or “___consequences___ will begin.” Consequences being either arrests or “dispersal tactics” tear gas, pepper spray, concussion grenades, rubber bullets, bean bag pellets.
HOWEVER they do not always do this here and i don’t even know how often they give warning in other cities.
After that big anti-war protest when we were blocking the bridges and got arrested and flooded the jails, they went back to being trigger happy with the pepper spray and rubber bullets. They also stopped announcing that they were going to start arresting people, and started tripping activists, attacking them, arresting people for “JAYWALKING” omfg. just picking us off from the sidelines, and as always people of colour and trans women were the first targets.
The night of the bridge sit in they told us that anyone who wanted to leave and not be arrested could, and then a trans woman tried to leave and was arrested. You can’t take cops at their word. That seems obvious but it can still be shocking to be at a protest, talking to people, and then suddenly have a face full of pepper spray. I cried the first time that happened, not just from pain but also because I was so shocked! no warning, just BAM, they attacked us.
If you get arrested over the weekend there’s a possibility that they’ll keep you in jail until Monday. That’s what they did to the trans woman they arrested even when the rest of us were allowed out within 36 hours.
Bear in mind that they may keep you in a paddy wagon for hours and hours, without access to a bathroom. I had to pee and it was agony.
When you get arrested, they don’t remove your cuffs. You share a cell with a bunch of other people and they can help you get your pants down :D
If you can get out of your zip ties, at least friggin pretend to keep them on or they’ll put you in metal cuffs (experience).
If you don’t want to get arrested, it is okay to try to walk away at any point. I don’t have backup care for my dogs and I try not to be arrested now because of that.
If you aren’t able to be peppersprayed or tear gassed or shot at (and like, those things can have really negative consequences on your health?) it is okay to try to walk away. There are and there will be other ways to resist.
I say “try to” because as that one woman showed, they don’t always let you, even if they said they would.
And finally, protests thinned out because Bush created “free speech zones”: specific areas where it was okay to gather but only in certain numbers, in other spaces gatherings could be arrested, and too large a gathering could be interrupted and arrested.
I think it’s likely we’re about to see a return to those conditions, and the women’s march, as racist, ableist, whorephobic, and mainstream white feminism as it is, may be one of the last big protests you can expect to attend without too many negative consequences for a while.
So whether or not you go out today is up to you and there is no right or wrong choice. Remember that resistance is ongoing, and it looks as much like feeding hungry people as it does like wearing a fuzzy goddamn cat hat (my dad texted me that he’s wearing a “pussy hat” in DC today and i died of shock. but i’m back.)
So people are dying in the Middle East, but the global media do not give a shit about Arabs unless we are involved in any “terrorist” related news. Two days ago a terrorist attack occurred on a busy shopping mall in Baghdad, that ended up killing at least 200 innocent people, followed by terrorist attacks today in Saudi Arabia. I don’t see the Iraqi/Saudi flag all over the social media, I don’t see the “pray for <insert a white country here> “?
If the world doesn’t look at us and see us as the humans we are, then fuck you all
Clinton killed a half million kids with sanctions, Bush invaded Iraq & Afghanistan, Obama drone bombed a half dozen countries, but “Muslims are so violent.” While US soldiers were emptying clips into pregnant mothers, bombing weddings, and dropping thousand pound bombs on buildings filled with civilians, 1.5 billion people were being smeared as violent for crimes they didn’t commit. While the military used cluster bombs, white phosphorous & depleted uranium on the occupied, Fox News was preaching that Islam is the problem. When Israel was massacring Lebanese civilians by the dozen, the US was express shipping weapons over to enhance the slaughter. 2.3 million in jail/prison, the crime bill, gutting public housing, racist drug laws, executing Black people every 28 hours, that’s violence. “Freedom of speech!” But tens of millions of people don’t have the freedom to live without the US military bombing them. “Freedom of speech!” And freedom to spy, freedom to wiretap, freedom to infiltrate mosques, freedom to mass incarcerate, freedom to bankrupt the sick, freedom to deny affordable education.
“What Malcolm X said when he got silenced by Elijah Mohammed was in fact true: America’s chickens… are coming home to roost.
We took this country by terror, away from the Sioux, the Apache, the Arowak, the Comanche, the Arapahoe, the Navajo. Terrorism.
We took Africans from their country to build our way of ease and kept them enslaved and living in fear. Terrorism.
We bombed Granada and killed innocent civilians, babies, non-military personnel.
We bombed the black civilian community of Panama with stealth bombers and killed unarmed teenagers and toddlers, pregnant mothers, and hardworking fathers.
We bombed Qaddafi’s home and killed his child.
Blessed are they who bash your children’s head against a rock.
We bombed Iraq. We killed unarmed civilians trying to make a living.
We bombed a plant in Sudan to payback for the attack on our embassy, killed hundreds of hardworking people, mothers and fathers who left home to go that day not knowing that they would never get back home.
We bombed Hiroshima, we bombed Nagasaki and we nuked far more than the thousands in New York and the Pentagon and we never batted an eye.
Kids playing in the playground, mothers picking up children after school, civilians, not soldiers, people just trying to make it day by day.
We have supported state terrorism against the Palestinians and Black South Africans and now we are indignant because the stuff we have done overseas is now brought right back to our own front yards.
America’s chickens are coming home to roost.
Violence begets violence.
Hatred begets hatred.
And terrorism begets terrorism.”
Hi, like I really have some social issues that are dear to me and that I really do wanna do the best I can to change them and help people. I attend protests and other events. I just wanna know has there been a time where the people were were actually fulfilled with their wishes by protesting? Like how many people went out against the Iraq war, against, bombing Syria (both to no avail) and now against Trump... I'm just wondering do you know of any moment where it's happened? Thanks
While i can think of examples of small-scale protests from Black Americans sitting down in the white section of busses to protesting housing projects, we have to understand the true function of protest and what it is really about.
Protesting is not the one and final approach towards a certain goal. It is, however, one part of a bigger picture. Solidarity is not only conveyed through protesting, but protesting is one, at times essential, part of it. When we protest we must realise that things are not going to turn around and change the next day due to us taking to the streets. What protests do and what they’re actually about is that they a) reaffirm the public’s opinion, b) make decisions-makers/fascists feel threatened and c) define where we’ll be classified when history is written years down.
Most importantly, let’s not forget what not protesting accomplishes, as it further isolates the oppressed, gives more comfort to the oppressor as well as normalises oppression.
IRAQ, Baghdad : An Iraqi fireman sits after fire was
extinguished at the site of car bomb attack in the mostly Shiite
neighbourhood of Baghdad Jadida in the Iraqi capital on June 9, 2016 A
suicide car bomb attack near a military base north of Baghdad and
another blast near a market in the Iraqi capital killed at least 18
people, police said. AFP PHOTO / AHMAD AL-RUBAYE
Caitlin (Bruce) Jenner is being called things like brave, heroic and strong. The guy in this picture is Army Veteran Noah Galloway who lost an arm and leg to a roadside bomb in Iraq. Noah came second to Caitlin to receive the Arthur Ashe courage award. If Bruce wants to be a woman, fine. But let’s make sure we honor our veterans before we honor someone’s decision to call themselves a woman. Thank you for your service and sacrifice Noah. You are truly brave, heroic and strong.
“I’m in charge of international expansion for one of the largest consulting firms in the cannabis industry. Not only are we going to save the economy, we’re going to hit the reset button on human collective compassion. The only bombs we should be dropping in Iraq are weed bombs. Calm the fuck down, people.”
Trump is a dangerous clown, and we must continue to strongly oppose him and his hateful crowds. But it is important to understand that his idea of “banning all Muslims,” scandalous as it is (intentionally scandalous, because he is of course doing it for media attention), is far less scandalous than the past dozen years of American disregard for non-American Muslim lives. And that wasn’t Trump. Trump didn’t murder thousands of innocent people with drones in Pakistan and Yemen. Trump didn’t kill hundreds of thousands of innocent people with bombs in Iraq and Afghanistan. Trump didn’t torture people at Bagram, Abu Ghraib, Guantanamo, or the numerous black sites across the planet. Trump’s weapons aren’t incinerating Yemen now, and didn’t blow up Gaza last year. No American president in the past fourteen years has openly championed Islamophobia, but none has refrained from doing to Muslims overseas what would be unthinkable to do here to Americans of any religion. This deadly speech we are hearing towards the Muslim members of our family is nothing new: it is a continuation in words of what has been real on the ground for a long time. Our legitimate dismay at Islamophobic statements must be situated inside this recent history, a history in which a far wider swath of the country than Trump’s base is implicated.