Missouri gov. declares state of emergency ahead of Ferguson verdict

Missouri Governor Jay Nixon (Reuters / Kenny Baht)

Missouri Governor Jay Nixon (Reuters / Kenny Baht)

The governor of Missouri declared a state of emergency on Monday ahead of the anticipated grand jury decision surrounding Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson and the potential protests the verdict may bring to that city and others.

Citing what he called the “possibility of expanded unrest” ahead of the impending verdict, Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon said in a declaration on Monday that the St. Louis County Police Department and the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department will operate as a Unified Command “to protect civil rights and ensure public safety in the City of Ferguson and the St. Louis region”.

A grand jury is expected to announce any day if they will charge Wilson with the August killing of Michael Brown, an unarmed teenager.

“In the days immediately following Michael Brown’s death, peaceful protests were marred by senseless acts of violence and destruction,” Gov. Nixon said last week.”That ugliness was not representative of Missouri, and it cannot be repeated.”

In addition to declaring a state of emergency, Nixon issued an executive order which in turn has activated the Missouri National Guard to assist local law enforcement.

Due to the periods of unrest that Ferguson and the St. Louis region have experienced in the wake of Brown’s death, Nixon said the state of Missouri will be prepared to respond “appropriately” in order to protect citizens and local businesses from “violence and damage.”

“I further order that the Unified Command may exercise operational authority in such other jurisdictions it deems necessary to protect civil rights and ensure public safety and that other law enforcement agencies shall assist the Unified Command when so requested and shall cooperate with operational directives of the Unified Command,” the governor wrote in the executive order.

The move follows Nixon’s decision to put the National Guard on standby in order to ensure it can support police officers and rapidly respond to any reports of violence. Elaborating on where the Guard fits into the governor’s latest action, St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay suggested on Monday that it will not be the primary force at any protest.

“The way we view this, the Guard is not going to be confronting the protesters and will not be on the front line, interacting directly with the demonstrators,” the mayor said.

Nixon, meanwhile, said the executive order was needed to provide for an orderly and effective response to whatever decision the grand jury announces.

“As part of our ongoing efforts to plan and be prepared for any contingency, it is necessary to have these resources in place in advance of any announcement of the grand jury’s decision,” the governor said in a news release, according to local KSHB News. “These additional resources will support law enforcement’s efforts to maintain peace and protect those exercising their right to free speech.”

Last week, the governor said it was necessary for the state to avoid the kind of confrontation that occurred following Brown’s death.

“In the days immediately following Michael Brown’s death, peaceful protests were marred by senseless acts of violence and destruction,” he said. “That ugliness was not representative of Missouri, and it cannot be repeated.”

It’s unclear how exactly the grand jury will rule, as competing accounts of the fatal incident have surfaced. Some witnesses say Brown was surrendering to Wilson when he was shot, while others, including Wilson, say Brown had confronted the officer and went for his gun.

It’s unclear how exactly the grand jury will rule, as competing accounts of the fatal incident have surfaced. Some witnesses say Brown was surrendering to Wilson when he was shot, while others – including Wilson – say Brown had confronted the officer and went for his gun.

Even with no decision, some demonstrators have taken to the streets. A crowd of protesters staged a peaceful rally in St. Louis on Sunday, marking 100 days since the tragedy. Protesters laid down on chalk outlines representing shooting victims, pretending they had been killed.

90yo US WWII vet vows to defy arrest for feeding homeless

Arnold Abbot being arrested on November 2. Video still. Courtesy Browards Palm Beach New Times

Arnold Abbot being arrested on November 2. Video still. Courtesy Browards Palm Beach New Times

A 90-year-old war veteran says he will continue breaking the law by feeding homeless in public places in the city of Fort Lauderdale, Florida. He was arrested earlier for defying a city ordinance that restricts such charity to protect local businesses.

Arnold Abbot has been feeding homeless people in the streets of Fort Lauderdale for some 23 years, and says he will not stop, despite the city council making it a citable offence, carrying a punishment of 60 days in jail and a $500 fine.

“I am not afraid at all. I was a combat infantryman for 2 1/2 years. I’ve spent 50 years fighting for civil rights for the minorities in this country. I don’t have the slightest fear of being arrested,” he told RT. “The only thing I am concerned about is that there would be nobody to feed the homeless outdoors, which is what I do – and what I intend to do as long as there is breath in my body.”

Arnold Abbot being arrested on November 2. Video still. Courtesy Browards Palm Beach New Times

Arnold Abbot being arrested on November 2. Video still. Courtesy Browards Palm Beach New Times

Abbot and two fellow anti-poverty activists, church ministers Dwayne Black and Mark Sims, were arrested over the weekend, after the controversial no-feeding law came into force last week.

They were not taken into custody, however, and the case is yet to be heard by a judge, but on Wednesday they repeated the same “offense” of feeding homeless publicly. This time the act of civil disobedience was not interrupted by law enforcement, possibly because the conflict drew nationwide attention.

Abbot is one of many activists resisting what appears as a spreading trend in US cities to crackdown on homeless people. He says continuing his work is a matter of being true to his faith.

“I believe that I am my brother’s keeper. The name of our organization is ‘Love Thy Neighbor,’ and that’s what we do. We try to spread love, to help our fellow men,” he told RT.

“We have 10,000 homeless in Broward County, which is the county of which Fort Lauderdale is the principal city. Most of them are in Fort Lauderdale, and we want to take care of all of our people. We are all God’s children.”

But Mayor Jack Seiler says he has to take care of Fort Lauderdale business owners and residents. A major tourist destination, the city’s economy depends on being attractive, and the city authorities say having homeless people visible on the streets doesn’t help that.

“The parks have just been overrun and were inaccessible to locals and businesses,” Seiler told RT.

Video of Jeff Weinberger speaking about city policies discriminating against the homeless with South Florida Food Not Bombs

Breaking News: Tense stand-off between Million Mask March protesters and police in London

RT UK – November 05, 2014

Reuters / Bobby Yip

Reuters / Bobby Yip

Barricades have been erected in London’s Parliament Square and hundreds of police officers are on standby after protesters announced intentions to “blockade” the center of the capital.

In anticipation of the Million Mask March on November 5, officers from the Metropolitan Police, British Transport Police and the City of London Police Force will be on duty, with many others on standby.

In their invitation to the Million Mask March, Anonymous activists announced they intend to to cause traffic chaos in the capital:

“What I’d like to see is a MASSIVE Anonymous blockade of London City,” the demo’s website said. “Complete physical GRIDLOCK. Only thing that gets through are Fire & Rescue and ambulances. NOTHING ELSE MOVES.”

LIVE – Million Mask March floods London streets

 

The demonstration has been called by the hacktivist group Anonymous, whose manifesto states they protest against austerity, mass surveillance and human rights abuses.

The London march is part of a day of global demonstrations, which include rallies across Europe, the Americas and Asia.

Barricades have been erected in London’s Parliament Square and hundreds of police officers are on standby after protesters announced intentions to “blockade” the center of the capital.

In anticipation of the Million Mask March on November 5, officers from the Metropolitan Police, British Transport Police and the City of London Police Force will be on duty, with many others on standby.

In their invitation to the Million Mask March, Anonymous activists announced they intend to to cause traffic chaos in the capital:

“What I’d like to see is a MASSIVE Anonymous blockade of London City,” the demo’s website said. “Complete physical GRIDLOCK. Only thing that gets through are Fire & Rescue and ambulances. NOTHING ELSE MOVES.”

 The demonstration has been called by the hacktivist group Anonymous, whose manifesto states they protest against austerity, mass surveillance and human rights abuses.

The London march is part of a day of global demonstrations, which include rallies across Europe, the Americas and Asia.

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Last year’s London march saw more than 2,500 protesters take to the streets, in a rally which saw fireworks thrown at Buckingham Palace and a total of 15 arrests.

The heightened security measures come as the Metropolitan Police attempted to contact Anonymous, but no one came forward with any details.

“We are keen to talk with them to ensure they are able to protest; it is important that they talk to us so that we can work together to achieve a safe and successful event,” said Chief Superintendent Pippa Mills.

Rather than communicate directly with local authorities, Anonymous sent a message to the government, and to global world leaders: “To oppressive governments, we say this: we do not expect our campaign to be completed in a short time frame. However, you will not prevail against the angry masses of the body politic.”

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The group further addresses the British government, saying they have “made an enemy of Anonymous,” and that they have “angered them considerably.”

Speaking to RT, one source from the Anonymous movement said, “It’s a night of grievance on a night that’s historically about parliament and how it’s not always working in the people’s interests.”

“We burn an effigy of Guy Fawkes on a fire each year as a warning against standing against parliament so we just felt it would be symbolic,” the source said.

The Million Mask March was due to begin at 1800 GMT from Trafalgar Square.

 

 

 

 

 

 

NYPD caught dumping gloves, masks from Ebola site into street garbage can (VIDEO)

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RT news
Published: October 24, 2014

New York City police officers working around the Harlem apartment of Craig Spencer, the doctor who tested positive for the Ebola virus on Thursday, were caught discarding their protective gloves and masks in a street-corner trash bin.

According to the New York Post, the NYPD cordoned off the entire block in front of Spencer’s building on W. 147th Street. Authorities inside the apartment were reportedly wearing hazmat suits, so its possible that the gear-discarding officers were only on patrol outside the building.

NYPD bin protective wear after leaving ebola danger zone

 

 

Ebola in New York: Doctor who treated patients in Africa tests POSITIVE for virus after he’s rushed to Bellevue Hospital in New York with 103F fever and nausea

 

 

 

Politics British Politicians To Face Criminal Investigation Over Scottish Referendum

In a television interview with the BBC just four days before the referendum John McTernan, a former adviser to Tony Blair said, "It's important to remember that about a fifth of the electorate, that will be about a quarter of the total turn-out, have voted already. They have voted by postal vote. Those postal votes are running very strongly towards 'no'. There is a whole bank of votes in."

In a television interview with the BBC just four days before the referendum John McTernan, a former adviser to Tony Blair said, “It’s important to remember that about a fifth of the electorate, that will be about a quarter of the total turn-out, have voted already. They have voted by postal vote. Those postal votes are running very strongly towards ‘no’. There is a whole bank of votes in.”

 

EDINBURGH, October 04 (RIA Novosti), Mark HirstPolice in Scotland will formally investigate allegations that anti-Scottish independence campaigners breached electoral law during the referendum held on September 18.

“We can confirm that Crown counsel has instructed Police Scotland to commence an investigation into alleged breaches of Schedule 7, Paragraph 7, of the Scottish Independence Referendum Act 2013,” a statement issued on Saturday by the Crown Office, Scotland’s prosecution service reads.

The allegations relate to comments made by Ruth Davidson, a Member of the Scottish Parliament and leader of the Scottish Conservatives, in which she appeared to know the general results of postal votes arising from “sample opening” of ballot boxes.

Postal vote opening sessions are permitted before the formal poll is conducted to verify signatures and dates of birth against records held by the local Returning Officer. Agents for the two campaigns were allowed to monitor these sessions, but it is a criminal offense, punishable with up to a year’s imprisonment if found guilty, to communicate any information witnessed during the sample opening sessions.

In a television interview with the BBC shortly after the formal poll closed Davidson said “we’ve been incredibly encouraged by the results [of the postal vote],” implying the Scottish Conservative leader knew the outcome of the postal votes before the first formal results had been announced.

In another BBC interview just four days before the referendum John McTernan, a former adviser to Tony Blair said, “It’s important to remember that about a fifth of the electorate, that will be about a quarter of the total turn-out, have voted already. They have voted by postal vote. Those postal votes are running very strongly towards ‘no’. There is a whole bank of votes in.”

McTernan told RIA Novosti he had not been contacted by Police adding, “No reason to believe free speech is a crime.”

According to The Herald newspaper, Davidson has been contacted by Police with the paper quoting a Conservative Party source who said there was, “no suggestion she was accused of doing anything wrong at this stage.”

The independence referendum, which took place on September 18, saw a turnout of 84.59 percent. Scotland has chosen to stay in the United Kingdom with 44.7 percent of Scots having voted in support of independence and 55.3 percent having voted against.

Anti-NATO protesters begin 192-mile march on summit

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British Foreign Secretary of State for Foreign an Commonwealth Affairs, William Hague (L) and NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen unveils the logo of the NATO Wales’ summit before a family picture as part of a Foreign Affairs Ministers meeting in Brussels on June 25, 2014. (AFP Photo)

Peace activists have set out on a three-week ‘Long March on Newport’ to protest against September’s NATO Summit. Police say they have drafted in 9,000 officers to face the protesters in one of the UK’s biggest ever police operations.

More than 20,000 activists from around the world are expected to take part in demonstrations during the summit, where a week-long peace camp and a counter summit are among some of the events planned in what has been billed as Wales’ largest protest in a generation.

Sixty world leaders from the 28-nation military bloc will meet at the Celtic Manor in Newport for the NATO summit on September 4 and 5. Previous NATO summits in Chicago and Strasbourg saw thousands protest war, austerity and global inequality.

In one of the UK’s largest-ever policing deployments, 20km of security fencing is being erected around the venues.

“This is a UK-wide policing effort and I am confident that we will be able to deliver a safe summit, for delegates and the public,” said Assistant Chief Constable Chris Armitt, who is leading the policing and security operation for the summit.

 

 

 

No NATO Newport is taking a 19-day route from the National Eisteddfod in Llanelli on Friday, arriving in Newport on August 29. The protest is inspired by the Newport Chartist Rising, a 19th century suffrage march where scores were killed while demanding the release of Chartists imprisoned in the town.

“Many of us are increasingly worried by the threat that NATO poses to world stability and peaceful relations,” said the organizers.

“Since the end of the Cold War, NATO has reinvented itself supposedly as a tool of the ‘international community’ to safeguard ‘freedom and security’.

“In reality it is a vehicle for US-led use of force in the interests of the rich and powerful, accelerating militarization, bypassing the United Nations and the system of international law, and escalating spending on arms,” they added.

Activists argue that the money spent on arms could be better spent on hospitals, schools and services.

The protesters want to collect messages on postcards from members of the public along the way with the aim of delivering them on the first day of the summit during planned demonstrations outside the venue.

The No to NATO Newport umbrella group draws on the support of anti-war and anti-cuts activists working with the Stop the War Coalition, Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament and the Green Party.

 

Alan Smith 02.09.2014 11:57

Part of a letter sent from a Dutch Professor to Vladmir Putin

We are powerless onlookers, as we witness how the Western Nations, led by the United States, accuse Russia of crimes they commit themselves more than anybody else. We reject the double standards that are used for Russia and the West. In our societies, sufficient evidence is required for a conviction. The way you and your Nation are convicted for ‘crimes’ without evidence, is ruthless and despicable.