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28/12/2008

London Demo against Gaza carnage

London Demo against Gaza carnage Content Eyewitness report – Sunday December 28th

Arrival of the dogs

Arrival of the dogs

The London Metropolitan Police have managed the impossible – they made hundreds of people ona peaceful demonstration in the heart of London feel a bot like the people they were trying to represent – the Palestinians of Gaza. At the demonstration beside the gates of Palace Green, the leafy avenue of the embassies in Kensington, and the road leading to the Israeli embassy. The Israelis who may have been in the embassy – not many, one assumes, on Sunday evening – had nothing to worry about. The BBC website tells us that there were 2000 demonstrators there – a figure I very much doubt – then there were about two policemen for every demonstrators. The roads between Kensington Church Street and Kensington Gore – just over half-a-mile stretch, where all blocked and coked full of police forces, including the much loved dog unit, which indeed was drafted in to intimidate the protesters, once they really got into the rhythm of brutal policing. Beside me, a young man was trying to argue with the police using logics: “what are you afraid off? Of those people who have come to pray for the Gaza people? Are you not ashamed standing here, protecting the embassy of murderers?” It was to no avail, obviously. I have asked him to move along, telling him I had the feeling they are about to get nasty, and he will make an ideal target. He saw the point, seemingly, and retreated to the back. The demonstrators were made of people of all ages, from babies to very old and frail men and women, including two people in wheel chairs. At about 16:00, immediately after the official start of the protest, many of the protesters have kneeled down for the evening prayer, men and women in different groups, and prayed peacefully. It will be wrong to say that people were not angry – every one of us there was madly angry with the barbaric Israeli murder and destruction – but this did not translate itself into violence against the police, who kept the road to the embassy blocked by lines of sturdy policemen and women. There was something ugly in the air, though. As I was few inches away from the policemen, taking one of the photographs below, at about 16:20, I overheard one of the policemen advising a young man who found he could not get to the other side of the cordon, and just wanted to get there, being a tourist on shopping tour “just go back and scram, I tell you, do it now. There will some action in few minutes and you don’t want to be here”. So, it became clear to me that the violence will be manufactured pretty soon. It did indeed take less than five minutes, and the police cordon was swiftly reinforced by a large number, joining and starting to hit those close to them and push them with enormous force. Democracy in action, I suppose. I tried to take as many photographs as I could of this, until a well aimed hit on camera finished off the flash, so I continued to take photos as best I could, but many of the more brutal ones are, as a result, too dark. In the mad melee which followed, a SKY TV reporter in a beautiful red coat, in mid sentence facing her cameraman, was knocked down and about to be trampled upon by the advance of the forces of law and order, but for the efforts of the protesters which have surrounded her, hammered by the police for so doing, until she could be got up, very badly shocked and quite shaken. Things were happening so fast you could do nothing bur get pushed, and pandemonium was really frightening, with the police behaviour something to be seen to be believed. It well reminded me of the last time I was on demo at one of the checkpoints in Palestine, which seemed apposite. I have tried to pose as a press photographer, with my large professional camera, as I attempted to film the police getting the dogs into the crowd, and snatching individual protesters and hammering them into the road surface, four policemen to one demonstrator. Blood was flowing freely by that point, and as snatched a couple of shaky images, a huge policeman grabbed me with force I can only describe as brutal, and joined by another one rammed me back into the crowd but hitting me on the back for good measure. I could see some ten demonstrators at least led away, or rather dragged away with blood pouring from their wounds, and I moved rather quickly not to become the next prey. This is where I saw the CNN reporter, in mid sentence, on the background of all this violence, speaking of ‘extremists’, of Hamas and Hizbollah flags, as well as the flag of the ‘Palestinian State’. This was too much even for me, and I stopped him in his flow to ask since when did we havea Palestinian state, a comment he dod not really appreciate, but at least it got him packing and reteating before the obviously superior forces of the Met. At this point, there was nothing to do but disperse or be hit and arrested. The road was filled with shocked and shaken people, and one was saying to his friend as they ran past me “this is almost as bad as the Israelis”. He had a point. Haim Bresheeth A link toa BBC report which is not totally useless, but misses the point: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/7802078.stm The pictures below were taking by me:

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Policeman rearranging PEACE in CAPE! on his car

Policeman rearranging PEACE into CAPE! on his car

This policeman just noticed that a police car was used to advertise peace, by some of the protesters who passed by it. As I passed, and noticed him rearranging it into CAPE! I asked if the police is against peace on principle, a question which almost cost me an arrest…

People praying

People praying

At this point, despite the seriousness of the issues which brought the demonstrators out into the cold London evening, all was well organised and civilised

Large Palestine flag

Large Palestine flag

The large PSC Palestine flag we have seen on so many demonstrations, is unfurled and displayed

Demonstartors

Demonstrators

Demonstrators at about 16:10, when the whole thing may have looked as if it will pass without serious incidents

Police line at Palace Green

Police line at Palace Green

It was at this point in time, as I took numerous photos of the police line, that I heard one of them referring to ‘some action in few minutes’, and realised it all going to turn nasty. But as you can see, this was reason for jollity

Waiting for action

Waiting for action

They never like it when you take their pictures, but what the hell, I am allowed to do what I want in this democracy… but one of them was the policeman who then pushed me brutally so that I could not photograph the ‘special treatment’ on the road surface

Overall view

Overall view

Everywhere in Palestine, one can see the towering ‘security constructions of Militarized Israel, policing and controlling from above, directing fire, missiles, bombs and helicopters, all carrying out death and destruction in dense civilian population centres

Evening prayer

Evening prayer

All around the place about two hundred men and women were praying, in small groups, as the police charged

Anti-Zionist Haredim

Anti-Zionist Haredim

about fifteen Haredi Jews were there, stalwarts of such demonstrations, and a reminder that Jews, as devout as themselves, do consider Zionism and its atrocities in the same way that you and me might – their Judaism is what they use against such barbarities, in the same way that devout Muslims may be against Al Aida

In between

In between

Just a couple of minutes before the explosion of violence, This rabbi takes a minute to explain his position on Zionism to a newcomer to the political scene

A deminstrator beaten by the police

A demonstrator beaten by the police

This is the demonstrator who was the first one to be taken and beaten up brutally, and then arrested

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23/12/2008

Gaza Boat ‘Dignity’ Interviews (December 2008)

The Boat DignityGaza Boat trip on the Dignity by Bricup members

Two short clips which I have made, interviewing Prof. Jonathan Rosenhead and Mr. Mike Cushman, both from LSE and UCU and BRICUP members, who have sailed to Gaza aboard the boat Dignity as part of the Free Gaza campaign, in order to bring out Gazan students stuck there because of the illegal Israeli blockade; hundreds of students, with valid visas and accepted to universities abroad, have been prevented from leaving Gaza. On this sailing of the small boat Dignity, tons of medical supplies were delivered to hospitals, and 11 students were brought out of Gaza by the delegation. The film is an interview with both BRICUP members on their return, about 19 minutes long, in two parts, and can be viewed on YouTube:

Part 1

Part 2

All Photos below by Mike Cushman

israeli spy towers above Gaza Everywhere in Palestine, one can see the towering ‘security constructions of Militarized Israel, policing and controlling from above, directing fire, missiles, bombs and helicopters, all carrying out death and destruction in dense civilian population centres.
A Palestinian child in Shifa hospital, Gaza Gaza hospitals have been denied medicines, food, electricity, fuel, water and spare parts for almost four years now, with at times a total blockade. Obviously, many patients are dying, and the physicians are helpless and unable to help. In Gaza, where almost two million people live in the most degrading conditions, there are no medical treatments for cancer available now, of any kind.
Gaza port destroyed The Gaza port was a great white hope – Gaza is cut off from the rest of Palestine, and the fishing industry was crucial for the economy. The Israelis have brutally destroyed anything standing, and have made sure no fishing boats are allowed to leave.
Housing project in Gaza destroyed by Israeli bombing In the wake of the Peace Accords in 1993, many housing developments were started in Gaza, providing much-needed accommodation. The Israelis soon put a stop to this building boom, and most of the new housing was made inhabitable by bombing.
Gaza airport destroyed by Israeli bombing The EU has paid many millions of euros, financing what was to be Gaza main link with the rest of the world, as well as with the rest of Palestine. In an act of unprecedented Vengeance, totally unjustified in order to disable an airport, everything was destroyed by Israeli bombing and artillery.
destruction in the Gaza airport Around the airport, hundreds of houses and other buildings were flattened, as well as along the border with Egypt, where a huge area was totally wiped out, leaving tens of thousands homeless and destitute.

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07/12/2008

Liminal Zones Conference, Nicosia November 2008

conference session at the Goethe Institute, November 8th

Conference session at the Goethe Institute, November 8th, 2008

organized by Socrates Stratis & Angela Melitopoulos

Any attempt to understand the rapid transformation of territories in the 21st century reveals shifting landscapes and moving boundaries, thus a continuous struggle for their redefinition through conflicts and exclusions. Different conditions of mobility and migration encouraged by the so-called ‘globalised world’ inscribe in material environments social and psychological borders. In this context Cyprus and its inherent division acts as one of the frontiers to the EU. The aim of this workshop is to explore such liminal spaces with a particular reference to Cyprus and the Middle East.

How are liminal spaces constructed and managed and how can one think them from an interdisciplinary perspective?
What dictates the organization and management of these liminal spaces? What facts on the ground challenge the actual negotiation of such “zones under construction”? How do liminal spaces relate to a larger genre of boundaries present in contemporary urban environments? How do continuous fragmentations and reconnections in liminal zones shape contemporary urban societies?

This seminar proposes to engage in several roundtable discussions as productive strategies and tactics encouraging engagement between publics fragmented by the limit. We would like to explore the interdisciplinary roles of visual culture and architecture as porous interfaces within such a territory.

The seminar will take place within the Department of Architecture (University of Cyprus) and the Goethe Institut Nicosia. It will bring together scholars and practitioners from Cyprus, France, Germany, Greece, Israel, Palestine, Turkey and the UK. “Liminal Zones” proposes the creation of a research platform that will be continued in the future as a model for exchange and production of diverse methodologies.

To see an enlarged picture, click on the thumbnail image. By clicking on the name you can find more details about the speaker and their topic.

Mete Hatay Mete Hatay, who has led the tour through the Turkish side of Nicosia, and works for a Norwegian charity.
session on November 6th, at the School of Architecture, Nicosia University Conference session on November 6th, at the School of Architecture, Nicosia University
Socrates Stratis, during the tour to the Turkish side of Nicosia Socrates Stratis, of the School of Architecture, during the tour to the Turkish side of Nicosia
Angela Melitopoulos delivering her paper on Novenmebr 6th Angela Melitopoulos, one of the two organisers of the conference, delivering her paper on The Blast of the Possible installation
Ines Schaber speaking on the Working Archive, November 6th Ines Schaber speaking on the Working Archive, November 6th
Florian Schneider, speaking on November 6th, on Imaginary Property Florian Schneider, speaking on November 6th, on Imaginary Property
Anna Gerichting, speakinng at conference Anna Grichting speaking on the Boundaryscapes: Recasting the Green Line of Cyprus, November 7th
Eyal Sivan at the conference Eyal Sivan, speaking on November 7th, on the Common Archive
John Palmesino at the conference John Palmesino, speaking on the Cyprus and the World Without Borders, November 5th
Eyal Weizman at the conference Eyal Weizman gave the keynote address, on Future Archaeology, on November 5th
Socrates Stratis, speaking at conference Socrates Stratis, speaking on the Public Role of the Architect in Liminal Conditions, November 6th
Maria Loizidou at conference Maria Loizidou speaking on November 6th, on the “Public Private Synergy Convoy” Project
Celine Condorelli Celine Condorelli spoke on Common Use/Support Structure, on November 5th
Rebecca Bryant, speaking at conference on The Spoils of History Rebecca Bryant, speaking at conference on The Spoils of History, November 7th
John Nassari John Nassari speaking on Future Screens, on November 7th, on the right











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03/08/2008

Stuart Hall Speaks on…

This page is being constructed

Stuart Hall, 2005Since 2005, I have filmed a number of conversations with Stuart Hall. Those were shown at various conferences and are kept on a number of university archives, but are hardly accessible, which is why I decided to put them on this website.

The first one was a conversation with Prof. Nira Yuval-Davis, about Cosmopolitanism, which was recorded in May 2005, in lieu of his keynote speech at the BSA 2005, which due to health problems, Stuart could not attend. The following is his entire talk, broken into a number of topics. The whole conversation lasted just under 60 minutes.

Stuart Hall Speaks on Cosmopolitanism 1

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16/07/2008

EVA Special Event at MERL

Matrix East/SmartLab special event next

On Monday, July 21st, starting at 4.00, Nine artists will be showing their
multimedia work on the unique, cutting-edge multitrack system in Matrix East Research Lab (MERL),
using 24 screens and projectors. If you wish to book at place (and have not already
done so) please send me a mail back, keeping the same Subject address
line (EVA Special Event at MERL), and just saying YES.

For further details, click on the link below:

eva-20082

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