Wednesday, August 10, 2011
Riots in the UK, continued
London was quiet last night but copycat rioting spread to other parts of the country including Manchester, Birmingham, Liverpool, Nottingham and Bristol. A pattern seems to be emerging. The initial incident was triggered by the arrest of a career criminal of mixed race in Tottenham. It appears that although carrying a handgun, he did not discharge it, but something in the arrest caused a police officer to shoot his gun. The bullet from this ricocheted from the criminal's arm into the police radio of another office who thought he was being shot at and he unceremoniously shot the criminal.
The relatives of the shot man could not believe the original police story that he had shot at the police and organized a peaceful protest, but this was quickly hijacked by non-residents who became confrontational with police. The riot was summoned by anarchists using Blackberry Instant Messenger (which is encrypted). Most of those assembling were black teenage gangs, but white, left-wing anarchists were often among the ring leaders.
The police were taken unawares and really had no idea where the next riot would break out. London is a huge city, really a string of towns with high street shopping streets within a circular diameter of 30 miles. Enfield to Croydon, two towns within London where violence occurred are more than 25 miles apart. By the fourth night 16000 police had been drafted in from around the country, especially from the south and west where there is no large ethnic population, and these numbers contained the violence.
In Manchester the police acted much more robustly than in London. This may be because it wasn't in front of the 'liberal' media or because they were learning from the experience of London. The reaction of the public in London is for citizens to deploy to guard their own shops and businesses, but we have seen murders and muggings by the rioters of the defenders. The reaction to these riots has been one of disgust. Several of the people I have spoken have called for many extreme measures including bring the army back from Afghanistan, using tear gas and water cannon on the streets and rubber or even lead bullets.
So far this is being treated as a criminal matter. There have been over 1100 arrests, mostly of young people who have been caught in the act of looting or captured on CCTV. I doubt we shall hear many more calls for the removal of CCTV cameras. Where to put all these youngsters if they receive stiff prison sentences, is another matter.
These children were brought up under socialism and so the idea of something for nothing is current with them. They are used to getting subsidized housing if they have a child at 15 as an unmarried mother; they are used to fathering children with no come-back; they are used to be mollycoddled by social workers; they are used to youth detention centers with flat-screen TVs and play stations; they are used to a soft life with no responsibilities. Having seen the Coalition's plans for them, no wonder they are grabbing all they can while they can. But retribution is coming.
London's police was called 'institutionally racist' by the MacPhereson report. It is not. The problem faced by London is largely confined to people of foreign origin. The importation of West Indian immigrants in the 1950s has not been solved. A culture where fathers do not stay with families leaving young men without cultural support, coupled with connexions with Jamaican crime syndicates bringing in drugs and guns has led to criminal gangs like we saw in Baltimore in The Wire.
To add to the mix, we have had waves of immigration from the Indian subcontinent. Much of this has been beneficial to our economy, with Hindus, in particular settling in west London and becoming high achievers in education and business. The same can be said for some Muslim communities. However the influence of hard-line Islamists and brutal Somali gangs cannot be over-emphasized.
Finally, we have seen East Europeans added to the plot, bringing people traficking for prostitution to the story. 80% of the gun and knife violence in London is black on black. three quartes of the rest is black on Eastern European or vice wersa.