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What do demonstrations demonstrate?

Sandra Leslie


The ESF anti-war London Demo (17th Oct 2004) Was Yet Another Example Of Primitive
& Mechanical Solidarity That Must Change.

Phew!!! Well I'm certainly glad that yesterday's London Demo is behind us 
now since it was yet another example of mechanical rather than organic
solidarity.  All those there - between 20 and 100 thousand depending on who
was counting - returned home to their localities in order to wait for the
next such spectacle but most will not build things in between times.  And
whoever is in possession of the contact lists will begrudgingly hang on to
them in a sectarian way until a few people in London get together to hold
another London Demo.

It is time now, however, to transcend sectarianism and to build contacts
organically with a natural circumference to centre structure (or network) in
order to maximise dissent against this bloody and  systematic war machine.
Just think what could be achieved with a co-ordinated, same day, rally and
direct action throughout the lands and in our own localities.  Instead all
that was achieved was the usual allocation of a couple of minutes TV time
(if you're lucky) which is media constructed and only informs rather
communicates.

Below is an amusing song that sums up London demos and was written in the
early 1980's by a direct action activist but it was not me since I don't
have all the ideas and disagreements and I just learn from experience and
other people with my input being a small particle of the whole...

The Radicals' Rally
(Tune To The Teddybears' Picnic).

If you go out on the streets today
You'd better not take ID.
If you go out on the streets today
You'd better go incognito.
For every cop that ever there was
Is going to be there for certain because
Today's the day the radicals have their rally.

It's rally time for radicals
The lovely radicals are all having such fun today
And at 6 o'clock we all go home to watch ourselves on TV
Because we're tired little radicals...

 

October 2004

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