Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/1070/30137

From The Socialist newspaper, 22 January 2020

Police issue counter-terror guidance against campaigners

Protesting is not terrorism

Climate strike 'extremists', photo Isai Priya

Climate strike 'extremists', photo Isai Priya   (Click to enlarge)

Martin Powell-Davies, teacher and Socialist Party national committee member

The Guardian newspaper has revealed that the logos of over eighty different left-wing, environmental and animal rights groups - including that of the Socialist Party - have been included in a guidance document circulated by Counter Terrorism Policing.

The inclusion of these logos, alongside those of fascist and white supremacist groups, understandably drew an angry reaction from campaigns such as Greenpeace, the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament and Extinction Rebellion (XR).

Socialist Party members are also angered by any implication that our determination to build a socialist society to end war, poverty and climate change should be considered 'extremist'. However, particularly after the revelations of undercover spying on our members and others by the Special Demonstration Squad, political policing directed against socialists and trade unionists comes, of course, as no surprise.

Should this guidance document be taken as a serious threat or not? Counter Terrorism Policing tried to play down the issue, claiming that the guidance was simply to help people distinguish between "legitimate protest groups" and "extremists." But definitions of 'legitimate' and 'extreme' can change - especially under this Conservative government.

For example, when it was revealed that XR had been specifically listed as an 'extremist' organisation in their separate guidance, South-East Counter Terrorism Policing apologised for making an "error of judgement." However, Priti Patel, the new home secretary, while accepting that XR was a "protest organisation" rather than a terrorist group, made clear that the government was "constantly looking at individuals and groups", and that "everything has to be based in terms of risk to the public."

The page in Counter Terrorism Policing's guide listing groups including the Socialist Party

The page in Counter Terrorism Policing's guide listing groups including the Socialist Party   (Click to enlarge)

Prevent

These documents were produced as part of the 'Prevent' strategy, supposedly designed to 'prevent people from being drawn into terrorism'. However, it is the wrong strategy to meet that objective. It dissuades teachers and young people from openly discussing issues, and risks increasing the alienation that leads some people into the dead-end of individual terrorism.

The documents could mark a worrying step towards widening Prevent's scope to include a very different objective - to clamp down on anti-government protest.

The legislation already refers to "not just violent extremism but also non-violent extremism." It doesn't take too much imagination to see this being directed at climate change protestors or trade unionists organising strikes and mass demonstrations.

If left unchallenged, both school students and their teachers may start to be questioned and pressurised about their support for socialist parties and campaigns. Left-wing trade unionists might even face being barred from their posts in schools and other public services.

Trade unions should be demanding that the government withdraws these documents and the Prevent strategy, and make clear that they will act to defend members organising against the extreme and damaging effects of capitalism on millions of people and our planet.

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.


In The Socialist 22 January 2020:


Socialist Party news and analysis

Council cuts continue... So must the fightback

Protesting is not terrorism

End climate change, end inequality, end capitalism!

Capitalism fails NHS services in Liverpool: scrap PFI!

Them & Us


What we think

To win back working-class trust Labour must take the 'Liverpool road'


International socialist news and analysis

Eyewitness report: workers' struggle in France on the boil

France striker speaks: real, deep anger needs union strategy

Iraq - a brutal legacy of imperialist intervention

India: Huge general strike but a missed opportunity


Workplace news and analysis

Royal Mail workers to reballot for strike action

Renewing the left in PCS

A win against academisation in east London

Belfast Hovis workers' all-out strike

Westex strikers read the Socialist

Ealing tax office strike continues


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Make a stand: set legal no-cuts council budgets

"If you think bus and rail services are crap, sign our petition to take them back"

Building Tamil Solidarity with youth and the unions


Readers' opinion

The Socialist inbox

Robert Burns: of the people, for the people


 

Home   |   The Socialist 22 January 2020   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate   |   Audio  |   PDF  |   ebook






Related links:

Police:

triangleTV review: The Trial of Christine Keeler

triangleThe Socialist inbox

triangleEyewitness report: workers' struggle in France on the boil

triangleUnion lawyer arrested on security guards' picket line

triangleHong Kong's uprising

Terrorism:

triangleStreatham attack: Johnson's bill can't stop terror

triangleUnite against terrorism, racism, war and austerity

triangleFar right pose increasing terrorism threat

triangleHow 'Prevent' training fosters racist paranoia

Terror:

triangleNew Zealand mosque terror atrocity

triangleCaerphilly & RCT Socialist Party: Stop Israeli state terror

triangleFinsbury Park attack: No to terror, racism, war and austerity!

Policing:

triangleSecret police infiltration of workers' movement exposed

trianglePressure needed to force secret police disclosure

News and socialist analysis

News and socialist analysis

19/2/20

Environment

Cuts and climate change cause floods

19/2/20

Tories

Javid's departure foreshadows deeper Tory divisions

19/2/20

Poll tax

Couldn't pay, wouldn't pay, didn't pay: the battle to defeat the poll tax

19/2/20

Trans

Labour Party and trans rights

12/2/20

Terrorism

Streatham attack: Johnson's bill can't stop terror

12/2/20

Cuts

How to resist Tory attacks on local communities

12/2/20

Trade unions

Trade unions - new decade, new challenges

12/2/20

London

Council houses - not private property developers

12/2/20

Councillors

Cuts councillors are the real problem

12/2/20

NHS

NHS debt so high it can't be repaid - so don't pay it!

12/2/20

NHS

Unnecessary surgery scandal shows need for democratic control of NHS

12/2/20

NHS

NHS: Fight for full funding!

12/2/20

What We Heard

What We Heard

12/2/20

Them & Us

Them & Us

12/2/20

Windrush

Windrush deportations: end the hostile environment

triangleMore News and socialist analysis articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

LATEST POSTS

CONTACT US

Phone our national office on 020 8988 8777

Email: info@socialistparty.org.uk

Locate your nearest Socialist Party branch Text your name and postcode to 07761 818 206

Regional Socialist Party organisers:

Eastern: 079 8202 1969

East Mids: 077 3797 8057

London: 020 8988 8786

North East: 078 4114 4890

North West 079 5437 6096

South West: 077 5979 6478

Southern: 078 3368 1910

Wales: 079 3539 1947

West Mids: 024 7655 5620

Yorkshire: 077 0671 0041

ABOUT US

ARCHIVE

Alphabetical listing


February 2020

January 2020

2019

2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999