Thursday, August 11, 2011

The London Riots: Attacked From Within

I am disgusted, appalled, heartbroken and furious about the destruction, devastation and demolition which has taken place on the streets of London over the last few days. Fortunately, the ‘London Riots’ have absolutely nothing to do with Casa de Campo, La Romana or the Dominican Republic, however as an English person and journalist living in the Dominican Republic, I feel compelled to share with you the sad story of what has happened and is still happening in the UK. 

The sorry story of the ‘London Riots’ has been largely un-told in the Dominican press and so for those of you who have no idea what I’m talking about and what is going on in London, here it is: essentially wide-scale riots and looting have broken out across London as well as in various other cities across the UK, with ‘youths’ setting fire to cars, buses and local businesses, looting – breaking into shops and stealing whatever they can grab, as well as violence against the police – throwing of rocks, fireworks and other objects. This is the worst violence London and the UK has seen for decades.

Here is a brief summary of the terrible series of events over the last few days:
Thursday August the 4th: “Well known gangster shot dead by police sparks violence”
A man named Mark Duggan was shot dead by the London Metropolitan Police. Following his death, British newspapers named Duggan as a ‘well known gangster’ and that he was under surveillance by police officers for gun related violence. Investigations into the death of Mark Duggan, who he was and what actually happened are still being investigated.
London’s Burning!

Saturday August the 6th: “Riots erupt in Tottenham”
A group of 300 protestors gathered at the Tottenham police station (Tottenham is an area in London), protesting for ‘justice’ for Mark Duggan. Following this ‘peaceful’ protest, violence broke out, when 2 police cars, a bus and a shop were set on fire, petrol bombs were thrown, whilst dozens of shops were broken into and looted with rioters seen running away with trolleys full of stolen items.

Sunday and Monday August the 7th and 8th: “Rioting spreads as thugs over-run the city”
‘Copy-cat’ rioting broke out across more than 10 boroughs (areas) of London on Sunday and Monday evening with violence also taking place in Liverpool, Bristol, Birmingham, Nottingham and Leeds.

So who exactly are these crazed lunatics, imbeciles and utter morons attacking our London streets? As sad as it is to admit, these ‘youths’ are (in general) British teenagers, who are destroying the businesses in their own neighborhoods – but why ransack your own street? As one 17 year old girl filmed for the BBC news put it “because they’re the rich people ain’t they”, meaning the people whose businesses have been destroyed – I would hardly label a family who run a local supermarket ‘rich’ – rather ‘hardworking’, ‘honest’ and ‘tax-paying’ seem more appropriate!

This senseless violence and criminal activity was initially linked to the death of Mark Duggan, however the continued riots have more to do with greed, stupidity and disrespect than with any kind of ‘protest.’ Youths and yes they are mostly ‘young people’ have joined together in some kind of crazed ‘mob mentality’ with the aim of looting and stealing as much as they can, whilst also ‘showing the police we can do whatever we like.’
It is disgusting. It is appalling. 

What now?
The British Prime Minister, David Cameron has now returned from his vacation (don’t ask) and tonight there will be 16,000 police on the streets of London – a move which will hopefully put an end to this unlawful and dangerous behavior…….it is now 3.30pm in London….in just a few hours we will know if the British Metropolitan Police succeed in quelling this ‘unrest.’ I hope so, I really do.


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