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London riots

August 9, 2011 Leave a comment

The chaos in London city and around greater London has caused trouble to the capital frightened citizens, thousands of foreign tourists and on-edge policemen. The police force is doing whatever they can to ensure the streets back to order. However, the situation is not yet that optimistic.

(by the Guardian)

Facts and timeline

On 4th, August, last Thursday, Mark Duggan was shot dead at Ferry Lane in the Tottenham area.  This is believed to be the primacord of the city-scale riot.

McDonald's on Lewisham High Street was smashed

McDonald's on Lewisham High Street was smashed

At Saturday night, various areas in Tottenham, Tottenham Hale and Wood Green had suffered from mass disorder including protesters smashing shop windows, setting houses and vehicles on fire.

At Sunday night, the riots spread to inner city Chingford Mount, Enfield, Islington and Oxford Circus. Many places including China Town had power-cut during the night time.

On Monday, southern London such as Lewisham and Bromley responded to the riots and the police said there were people using Blackberry messenger to assemble unrest.

Today, the forth day of the Chaos, sister cities including Liverpool, Birmingham and Bristol had confirmed the spreading riots.

Where does the anger come from?

The 29-year-old  Mark Duggan was killed in an operation carried out by London Metropolitan Police. The official report says after ignoring officer’s warning, the anxious man shot at least twice (with illegal firearm) and the force have to return fire (with Heckler and Koch MP5). Followed investigation shows there is one bullet which is shot by Mark Duggan, has stuck in the police’s radio.

Horseback Police's patrolling on Lewisham High Street, 9th August

Horseback Police's patrolling on Lewisham High Street, 9th August

Mark’s resist to arrest and attack to the police have in the end cause his life. But the question is: why have 300 people gathered outside Tottenham Police Station and required “justice”?

For one reason, obviously, the diseased is a coloured race (Angola Caribbean) and only because of this, the crowd has the wrath towards the  ‘discrimination’ in centuries. The Angola Caribbean people have long been in Britain and settled as the natives for ages. But from a historical point of view, they have been treated as slaves and lower-class. The discontented feeling has been rooted since then.

However, the grand cause as the whole background is that the Britain’s  economy has been declining, causing mass unemployment and civil disappointment. Early this year, massive cuts have been claimed towards teachers, social workers, policemen, armed force and governmental employees. Not to mention thousands of companies discharge their workers to reduce expenses.

The British Angola Caribbeans, living in a comparatively poorer situation, have suffered more trouble than the others. All these factors make those people increasingly lose faith in the government and become more unsatisfied with the society.

Boris’s coming

Boris Johnson, the Mayor of London, has to fly back to the city from his holiday. He has gone to Clapham Junction today (9th, August) to ease the public anger.

He thanks the crowd for coming to the meet and says “this is the real spirit of London”.

“I want to say to all of those who own a shop or runs a business here that I am very sorry. I am… for the loss or damage you have suffered.

I also want to say to those who have been suffered the stealing that they will be apprehended. ”

The mayor says those responsible for the violence will “face punishment they will bitterly, bitterly regret”.

However, after rejecting “economic or social justifications” for the violence, he turned around and walked away.

100 days to the Olympics

The riot raises a big question mark as the city has just welcomed the 100-day-counting-down of the 2012 Olympics Games.

Fire Brigade extinguished a fire on New Cross Road, 8th August.

Fire Brigade extinguished a fire on New Cross Road, 8th August.

By now more than 16,000 police officers have been deployed on London’s streets as Boris guaranteed that “a huge number of police” will protect the citizens.

The local police force have been enforced from 30 forces including Horseback Police and Motorcycle Police. It is reported that some 111 Met police have suffered serious head and eye wounds, cuts and fractured bones in the riots. Five police dogs have also been hurt.

The police has arrested 563 rioters and among them 105 have been charged.

However, it can be clearly seen that London Metropolitan Police, Fire Brigade and Medical Service are acting very fast towards the occuring events, which at least gives people some comfort and confidence in authority’s ability to deal with thunderbolts.

Editor’s words

The long repressed crowds erupts when the black powder is  ignited. After all, the society has the right to show the emotion and discomfort to the government. However, a more reasonable and responsible approach is needed. It is still in doubts that once this fire is extinguished, is it going to be a matter of time for another fire to be lit?

The BBC and Sky TV have offered live coverage of the riots both from the ground camera crews and the helicopter crews. This gives the people the real understanding of the situation and makes the event transparent. Apart from the riot itself, the media acts responsibly and the real meaning of ‘news’ is achieved.

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