Saturday, November 1, 2008
October 15th 'Terrorism' Update
A quick update on the so-called 'terrorism' arrests over one year on. Remember that this is an ongoing and lenghty process designed to push the topic back into the fineprint of the press, and our collective memory — to forget, and in short, to ignore, the farce that is continuing to distrupt the lives those accused and their communities...
The Crown has issued an indictment today against 18 people arrested in the police raids of October 15th 2007 in Ruatoki, Auckland, Hamilton, Whakatane, Palmerston North, Wellington and elsewhere.
Five of the 18 people have been charged with participation in a criminal gang under section 98A of the Crimes Act.
These charges are a desperate attempt by the Government to save face after the Solicitor-General found 'insufficient evidence' to bring charges under the Terrorism Suppression Act. The Crown seeks to characterise political activists who support Tino Rangatiratanga and dissent from the Government as criminals.
From 'Global Peace and Justice Auckland':
The police decision to lay charges of participating in a criminal gang against five of the Urewera arrestees is ludicrous. Having failed to brand these activists as terrorists the police now want to try to brand them as criminals.
Why lay these charges more than a year after the arrests? Rather than being serious about these charges it seems to be an attempt to shift the whole case to the High Court rather than have it heard in the District Court. It seems the police will leave no stone unturned in trying to make the case look more serious than it is and in the process to salvage some credibility from the hopeless mess they have got themselves into.
In a bare-faced abuse of the legal process the police also intend to
relay charges dismissed at depositions. This is desperate stuff
The police have been on a hiding to nothing since their dramatic
"anti-terror" raids on October 15th last year seized of two pig
hunting rifles. Their case is based on a lot of hot air and stupid
conversations. Were those charged not political activists the police
would have issued warnings for technical breaches of firearms laws
rather that attempt the Keystone Cops prosecutions.
For the police this is a "double or nothing" gamble.
Since their dramatic police conference telling the country how they
had thwarted terrorist activity the police case has unravelled
rapidly. The Solicitor General found there was insufficient evidence
to lay charges under the Terrorism Suppression Act and the police case
has rapidly unravelled since then.
The waste of public resources is already in the millions and will be
in the tens of millions before it is over.
And finally, a rather insightful comment on Indymedia:
"The point you are blindly missing ... is the states' historical reaction to any Maori movement of any consequence that dared to challenge the great farce that is crown sovereignty, movements from the Kingitanga, Titokowaru's movement, Te Kooti's movement, Te Ua's movement, Te Tohu and Te Whiti's movement, Rua Kenana's movement and now the Tuhoe Nation movement.
The states response has been the same in EVERY instance, armed forces sent in to crush the will of the people to continue the movement.
Armed forces did not enter Tuhoe land to arrest people caught up in operation 8, except for one of them, the rest did not live in the Tuhoe area yet the majority of armed forces converged on that area.
Armed forces entered the Tuhoe area currently under claim as the base area of an independant Tuhoe State, Te Urewera, as stated by Tamati Kruger in a TV1 interview following the raids. They entered that area to send a message to the people of Tuhoe as a reminder that they have more firepower and resources than Tuhoe does.
Their message was simple. They had come to show those renegade areas in Te Urewera who is boss. A clear reminder of the show of force used on Rua Kenana and the trumped up charges of sedition that followed.
They were there to break the will of the people to want independence. The rest, the charges, and now the indictments, is just a charade, an illusion if you like."
Some good links:
October 15th Solidarity
And I still have $10 posters for sale, which would greatly help the
defendants cause if anyone would like to buy one of me. Just get in