London AF on anti-fox hunting demo

London AF turned out for the anti-fox Hunting demo today (may 29th). As well as handing out Rebel City we gave out a leaflet (text of leaflet below:
TROOPS OFF OUR STREETS!
The attacks on Manchester, like elsewhere, have left people horrified, angry and insecure. However, May’s response, to turn Britain into an occupied war zone, is not the answer.
· It sets a dangerous precedent. Any time the government decides there is a threat the troops can be called in. This could be anti-government protests, strikes etc. Already an anti-fox hunting demonstration has been told that if they use flares they will be shot at. Hollande in France has already used the excuse of ‘terrorism’ to shut down demonstrations.
· There is not enough money to continue to deploy troops for any length of time. Why it is being done now? It is a bit like closing the stable door after the horse has bolted! Does it have something to do with May trying to look like a tough leader before the election?
· There is a real danger that the troops will shoot an innocent person. Remember the Brazilian who was attacked and killed on a tube train because he looked like a terrorist? The police are already known for shooting people who are the ‘wrong’ colour. The soldiers are even more likely to shoot and ask questions later.
· The troops aren’t actually going to stop such attacks. They are focused on key public areas, or where there are ‘important’ people, but ISIS militants have been known to attack anywhere. If they want to carry out an attack they will just go somewhere that the troops aren’t.
So what can be done?
We need to address the issues that have caused a number of people not only to undertake such horrific actions, but to give up their own lives in the name of one version of a religion. It is not confined to Islam. All religions have been known to justify atrocities in this way. How can you deal with people who think they have God on their side?
· Legacy of the foreign policy of Britain, the US and other self-proclaimed world ‘leaders’.
Military interventions in Afghanistan and Iraq have not led to freedom and stability for people but instead created resentment and anger at outside interference. We need to put a halt to a foreign policy which does acts as if the West has the right to invade, bomb and generally lord it over other countries. Instead, we need actions of solidarity and material support for all those in the countries themselves who are fighting for freedom and against oppression. This includes an open-door policy for those fleeing from conflicts.
· Stop supplying arms to governments who support reactionary Islamist groups.
The US armed and supported the Taliban, allied with Al Qaeda, in its fight against the Russians in Afghanistan. Saudi Arabia, the main exporter of Wahhabism, a reactionary version of Islam, is a main ally of the West. Our government has continually supplied arms to Saudi Arabia which in turn provides support for ISIS and Al Qaeda.
· Address the underlying social issues which are driving young Muslims to seek meaning in the fight against what they see as the colonialism of the infidel.
In a time of government-imposed austerity and economic insecurity young people are suffering the most. Racism and discrimination are wide-spread. We need to organise together to fight against austerity and racism, building up communities of solidarity that can tackle these problems and offer an alternative vision of society.

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