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Profiling the Poor as Terrorists
When the poor protest their conditions in the midst of oppulence, they are often profiled as terrorists.
The worsening economy, austerity and increasing numbers of peaceful protesters is adding fuel to profiling innocent people as terrorists
The concerns that terror would plague the 2010 Winter Olympics never went any further then that of the anarchist rampage on February 13th, 2010, the day after the opening ceremonies. As for that rampage that occurred at Georgia and Granville Streets near one of the new Canada Line terminals, a few shop windows were broken and some cars were scratched. But this rampage caused demonstrations thereafter to shrink by 90 percent. If the anarchists were a Vancouver version of the Toronto “Black Bloc” then it accomplished what the police wanted. It also caused a black eye to anyone who was a peaceful protestor. Thereafter, the Olympics went off without a hitch. At the time, we heard a far different story, especially with the disappearance of two tons of ammonium nitrate, enough fertilizer to make two bombs the size of the one that destroyed the Oklahoma City Federal building.
Despite the $900 million spent on Olympic security, the RCMP thinks that this is inadequate. They mention that "criminals" are planning protests to disrupt and terrorize the 2010 Vancouver-Whistler Winter Olympics. They claim a ten minute search on the internet has revealed a host of planned criminal attacks being organized against the games. So they justify cordoned "free speech zones", censorship, suspension of human rights, 900 cameras, seven thousand police and 5,000 private security and 4,500 soldiers to pre-empt the attacks. They claim to have uncovered;
Olympic Mascots characterized in cartoons carrying Molotov cocktails.
The Olympic rings with Nazi swastikas. This was seen by the author.
Masked protesters in abundance. During the first two days of protests, especially the second, these were seen in public.
Burning tire barricades blocking major highways. this never materialized, though intersections were briefly blocked on opening ceremony day.
A "photograph" showing the "Spirit Train" being overturned off the tracks by criminal protesters. This was completely fictitious and nothing like this was ever reported.
Images of beheading and the quote "Elementary to the art of war, cut off the head and the body will die."
A banner reading "Riot 2010"
Anyone who is critical of the Olympics, is in line to be profiled as a terrorist including the author for writing this commentary, although the author has not highlighted the Olympics because there are far more serious issues afoot such as the state of the world economy, accelerating unemployment, homelessness, hunger, disease and divisive manipulations in Iran and China in order for the International bourgeoisie to orchestrate a take over as well as escalation of war in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Meanwhile, the police have been rioting on the poor and ethic minorities well before the Olympics. Firoz Khan was attacked and robbed by three off duty cops. The off duty police were arrested by Vancouver police and were temporarily suspended with pay. Firoz Khan was doing his job delivering papers to the Hyatt Regency Hotel when attacked without provocation and robbed of $200. He has an exemplary work record according to his employer. He was working with his wife who witnessed the horror. The off duty drunken cops hurled insults like "We don't like brown people." Sixteen hours later, the police held a mini victory parade on Robson St. chanting "You have heard it told, Police wings are solid gold." as an obscene gesture of victory over minorities and human rights. After the attack in Feb. 2009, neither Firoz or his wife have returned to work as of Jul. 2009. To this day, more than a year latter, Firoz remains in a crippled condition.
Police have issued over 1,000 tickets since the beginning of 2009 to mostly poor and homeless people in downtown Vancouver, primarily in the downtown east side (DTES) at an average of $100 each. The total cost to the poor is $100 thousand, a cost they can ill afford with low or now welfare income. Many make a living recycling or begging (a fining or jailable offense). When they can't pay, they spend thirty days in jail for crimes such as spitting, begging, sleeping in the streets. riding a bike without a bell or a helmet, jaywalking and the like. Vancouver has recently closed some homeless shelters due to “Not in My Back Yard” (NIMBY) reaction and has destroyed 700 social housing units in a bid to beautify in time for the Olympics. Some of the social housing units still had people living in them during the demolition, which made its own headline.
Police have been directly witnessed attacking Iranian and Iraqi individuals 15 on one, racing to the scene in high speed squad cars, lights flashing and sirens wailing from all directions and them throwing them to the ground and beating them senseless in the heart of the financial district at 2 AM near the entertainment district.
Police have also been witnessed arresting people without charge or giving an explanation when requested in deference to the Canadian Charter of Rights as required under the Criminal Code of Canada in reading Charter Rights to arrestees. Perhaps this is the extension of the Patriot Act, Homeland Securities Act and the Oct. 2006 suspension of Habeas Corpus working its way into Canadian sovereignty. In 2010, certain acts came to light that suggest that this is now the case; that is, Canada no longer has its own sovereignty.
And then there are the seemingly endless incidents of tasering. One prominent example among many stands out. Almost every one in North America is familiar with the taser death of Robert Dziekanski on October 14th, 2007, at 1:28 AM who was attempting to find help when he arrived at the Vancouver Airport and got lost. He did not speak any English and flew to Vancouver form Poland to see his mother in Vancouver. In a bid to find help without anyone who spoke Polish, he became increasingly distraught and agitated and started to act in what became interpreted as a threatening manner, overturning furniture in frustration to get help in his plight. He was mistaken to be in a rage by people at the airport, who called in security and the police. The result of the breakdown in communication was that he was shot with tasers more than once by the RCMP. In fact, videos under review in the courts show him being tasered some five times over a 31 second period. He screamed in agony until the final taser shot finally killed him. There are dozens of other incidents in Canada and some of them fatal. Though some tasers are being removed from the field, some are still in use.
This is not to mention the literally hundreds of other incidents throughout history of police brutality. Many videos have been captured of the police in action by witnesses and even on security cameras.
Most of this is not reported in the media. Two of the incidents were witnessed by the author and the author wonders what is going on that is not witnessed. The number of poor is now dramatically rising due to the collapsing world economy, adding much more fuel to world wide tension to the mix.