Wednesday, December 28, 2005

A Christmas Message - Ignore the Bombs

I am about to head into Broadmead – not hat I want to, but I stuff to do and so need to step back into the consumer maelstrom. Watching Xmas TV I noticed that the air-wave assault of consumerism did not lull – as the 25th arrived, the adverts changed from Xmas to January Sales with practiced ease, like a well oiled military operation. Indeed the Guardian had a column describing the pre-xmas shopping period as 'war'; "...shoppers force themselves forward at the furious pace of commuters...anxiously debating presents on their mobile phones as if calling in a missile strike. This is guerrilla Christmas shopping, a deadly serious exercise in brinksmanship, consumers pitted against their favourite shops...". On the day I read that piece I had the misfortune to end up in the massive Tesco Eastville, and while I waited for a friend I could not help be notice how little like a war, and how much like a process the whole thing was: Huge lines of people were processed through the isles, stripped of individuality as their purchases are scanned into stock and marketing data and then their money (aka time spent earning it in wage-slavery) was handed over for the privilege. It is no wonder that one in every eight pounds spend in the UK goes to Tesco. They process consumer units like a well oiled military machine

But to describe this was war or war-like is to demean the terror of war.

For example: At the moment Broadmead, as the so-called Bristol-Alliance development gets underway, looks a bit like a bomb-site. Thought-connections: The Weather Underground, a US radical group of the 60s and 70s, used to perform bombings in the US mainland under the slogan 'Bring the war home'. That war was Vietnam and their bombs were an attempt to make people sit-up and realise that there were civilians dying in their name. We should not need a Weatherman to tell us which way the wind is blowing; in Iraq, the bomb-sites are not metaphorical: "Until the end of August, US warplanes were conducting about 25 strikes a month. The number rose to 62 in September, then to 122 in October and 120 in November." These war planes are dropping 500 pound bombs – these are military munitions designed to attack other military forces. In Iraq they are being dropped on houses and fields against insurgents. If a 2000-pound bomb has a blast radius of about 4000 feet, it is reasonable to assume that a 500-pound one has a blast radius of about 1000 feet. If insurgents were in a safe-house, would that house, and only that house, be destroyed in the air-strike? Does your home fit into a neat 1000 feet radius? Unless you are in a Clifton mansion you will see why so many civilians are dying as Bliar and Bu$h clear Iraq of terrorists.

How much did Bliar spend on an xmas present for Bu$h? 500 pounds?

No! Wait! But they have had elections! Yes – that is democracy in action. Amidst the re-runs of the Two Ronnies and the Queens speech did anyone notice that Qusay Salah al-Din, a guy organising protests against what he saw as rigged elections was found dead. Hands tied behind his back and a bullet in his head.

And the prices fall in the January sales.

And the bombs fall in Iraq.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Xmas Links

Well its xmas time so here's a few links to mull over with your mulled wine...

The Pantera stuff I donated for the GM Benefit auction sales went for £41!!! Cool!

The NYC police have had undercover people in protests. Nothing new there. They have also been 'influencing' events - i.e. acting as agent-provocateurs - nothing new there. What is new, is that the huge amount of digital media around means it can be proved. Check it out on

Class War have given an ace Xmas TV guide for the radical! See it on

Finally - Laff your ass off with

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Child Abuse by Coalition
I had reported some time ago about Seymour Hersh talking about the child-rape being perpertualted by the coalition - but this was only in a talk he gave. Now I've seen the same sickening allegations into torture in the main, not in a speech:

"A Sunday Herald investigation has discovered that coalition forces are holding more than 100 children in jails such as Abu Ghraib. Witnesses claim that the detainees – some as young as 10 – are also being subjected to rape and torture..."

But then, as Naomi Klein notes; The U.S. has used torture for decades. All that's new is the openness about it.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

'Resistance! Occupied Iraq and its Defiance of Bush'
I have just finished reading 'Resistance! Occupied Europe and its Defiance of Hitler'. Its is a fascinating trawl through the WWII underground. Full of inspiring stories of humanity and courage in the face of dictatorship. Stories like the spontaneous movement of Danes to hide their fellow citizens who were Jewish from the Nazi sweeps which saved around 90% of the population from the final solution. It also makes you think of contemporary times – Iraq and its insurgency/resistance/terrorists – whatever. In the talk by Eric Herring I listen to he talked about the Colition counter-insurgency officers who discussed the 'borrowing' of Nazi methods. If this is the case, here is food for thought from the book: Olaug Titlestad, a member of the resistance in Norway during the war notes; "When somebody had been arrested by the Gestapo, we used to watch his family and we invariably found what we were hoping for: we recruits for the resistance." Another resistance member, Dr. Eilert Eilertsen echoed this, "I am convinced that the Gestapo’s violence and terror actually created the Norwegian resistance movement."

Could it be that the coalitions killings, torture, bombings and corruption is creating the terror? Think so? Hmmmm.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Pantera Plectrum Takes on GM Milk!
So I've donated a Signed Pantera Ticket with Plectrum to aid the Sainsbury's Five. I got the ticket signed and plectrum from a gig in Newport, Wales in 28th September 1992. I traveled up from Devon just to see Pantera. They were supporting Megadeth at the time. At the end of their set, Pantera's guitarist 'Dimebag' Darrell Abbott threw his plectrum into the crowd and my then girlfriend caught it and gave it to me! Rock on! After the bit of the gig I went to, I went to the bar and there saw Dimebag Darrell getting a drink. I had a brief chat with him, told him the show was great (because it was) then asked him to sign my ticket, which he did. I am a little sad to part with these, but want to help the cause by donating something unique – of which I thought of this!! I guess it is doubly sad as DimeBag Darrell was shot last year by an angry fan. Still it is cool to see Pantera being given the breakcore treatment by people like Aaron Spectre.

Check out the full auction here:

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Last Toxic
Last Saturdays Toxic was amazing - Drop the Lime was fucking amazing, so good it hurts. Parasite also did a jumping set of great mashup. Looks like I am not the only one who enjoyed it - Radio 1's Mary Anne Hobbs was also bigging-up Toxic Dancehall: link to mary-anne_hobbs_breezeblock.mp3

Oh yes, Breakcore- putting Bristol on the map! Plus that was also the end of an era as the event closes, I guess there is something to be said for going up on a high - and it would be difficult to top the last event:

//Farewell TD//
It is with a great sadness in our hearts that we announce that the Toxic Dancehall on Saturday 3rd December 2005 was the final event ever! Through the general geographic dispertion of the night's promoters and some slight differences in musical outlook for the night we thought it best cease.

We, as promoters will continue to promote events but of a similar ilk: Clean Cut, Language, Dissident & Prank will be starting a new night at the Blackswan in June/July 2006 and Death$ucker and Anakissed will be running events at an (as yet) undisclosed location to begin in January/February 2006. The Toxic Dancehall website will remain as an archive and will also display info on related events.

Toxic Dancehall was started as bit of a laugh by a handful of mates, we could never have dreamed of being in the position we're in now. We are still very much good friends and that is one of the reasons we decided to stop, we want to remain that way. We are deeply indebted to all rigs, artists, djs, vjs and ravers who have help make the night what it is.

- Ali, Armin & Ed.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

The War on Terror is Terror
I have run out of describing, identifying, or quantifying words related to how the war in Iraq is sinking our culture to new lows of violence and debasement. This conflict has no 'bottom' and we seem locked in a deadly embrace with al-Qaeda, cycling down into hell. This is not paradise lost, its paradise no-hope. Its time to call it what it is - the War on Terror is nothing more that Terrorism on a grander scale than al-Qaeda, ETA, The Real IRA or anyone else you care to mentioned could conceive of...

From GNN"The Interior Ministry is at the epicenter of Iraq’s violent malaise. It is the headquarters for the Badr and Wolf Brigades; the American-trained death squads which are responsible for the massive assassination program directed at “alleged” Sunni resistance fighters. The torture chambers, death squads, and random bombings are not caused by foreign terrorists, nor are they the work of Iranian agents striving for a theocratic regime in Baghdad. They are, in fact, the nefarious activities of American puppet-masters, who matriculated in the terror wars in Nicaragua and El Salvador. Now, under Uncle Sam’s benign gaze, they are plying their trade in Iraq; wreaking havoc and spreading suffering on an unimaginable scale."

Friday, December 02, 2005

BBC Spin
BBC broadcast ’fake’ news reports: A Spinwatch investigation has revealed that journalists working for the Services Sound and Vision Corporation (SSVC) have been commissioned to provide news reports to the BBC. The BBC has been using these reports as if they were genuine news. In fact, the SSVC is entirely funded by the Ministry of Defence as a propaganda operation, which according to its own website makes a ’considerable contribution’ to the ’morale’ of the armed forces.