Rebel Daily 6: Climate CSI
September 09, 2020 by Extinction Rebellion
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Welcome to Rebel Daily #6!
Tomorrow will be the last day of this wave of Rebellion, so if you’re dithering at all, come on down! Keep checking that London broadcast for the latest on what’s going on, and where.
The Oil Slicks turned out in full force for the ‘Shell Out’ action, terrifying as ever. Photo: Gareth Morris
Join the grand finale march on Thursday at 2pm, location tbc, which will conclude in some speeches and quiet reflection.
But, it’s too soon for goodbyes just yet – there’s still a fair bit of rebelling to do. And, for this team, many stories of joyful and exciting action to cover!
Animal Rebellion standing up for what’s right.
Today’s issue is packed with action from days 7 & 8 of Rebellion. Read on to find out what Animal Rebellion has been up to in London and Manchester (spoiler: it involves the largest pig slaughterhouse in the UK and some creative lock-ons) and take a look at the remarkable voyage of Lightship Greta.
Also, see the chalk-sprayed writing on the wall at BEIS, and catch up on the latest from Parliament Square and those incredible tree-borne rebels.
Oh, and expect plenty of ‘Climate Crime Scene’ tape.
If you’d like to see previous newsletter issues, you can find them here.
As we enter this crucial phase in human history, our Rebellion will need money to make sure our message is heard. Anything you can give is appreciated.
Shell’s dark and dirty secrets
8 SEP | London
Photo: Gareth Morris
When you think a climate crime is being committed, it’s time to call the Climate Crime Investigators!
They targeted Shell’s HQ and staged a theatrical investigation for evidence. Police were jumpy at first and tore away their boundary tape, but eventually let them continue their work as media photographers crowded round.
Who you gonna call? Photo: Joe T.
The investigators highlighted Shell’s countless crimes, including decades of environmental destruction and human rights abuses in the Niger Delta of Nigeria.
Oil spills, blowouts, fires and general pollution have devastated once-pristine rainforest, the guilty oil giant has been busy greenwashing its image but with little effort to clean up its act.
Hundreds of people joined the main protest outside Shell HQ, including members of the Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People (MOSOP), a nonviolent campaign by indigenous people from the Niger Delta.
Shell, you’re a greasy mess. Photo: Joe T.
Six people were arrested, including two who chalk-painted ‘Stop Ecocide’ on the side of the building.
Later the samba band led hundreds of rebels on a noisy road-blocking march through central London that ended with speeches in Parliament Square.
Animal farming = moral + public health disaster
7-8 SEP | Manchester & London
Photo: Toby Melville.
The open letter says scientists have warned for years that exploitation of the natural world, habitat destruction and intensive livestock farming will cause disease to move from animals to people. Rebels are encouraged to email a copy to their MP.
The letter’s sombre messengers, dressed in plague doctor outfits, marched to Downing Street and had their robes thoroughly searched by waiting police.
The Tulip slaughterhouse kills 1.5 million pigs a year – that’s more than 4,000 a day.
At the same time, Animal rebels appeared before Manchester Magistrates Court for shutting down the UK’s largest pig slaughterhouse the day before.
A dozen activists glued themselves to coffins outside its entrance and locked on to the gas chambers on its roof. A pre-warning was sent to slaughterhouse staff to ensure no pigs were transported to the site during the blockade.
One brave Animal rebel managed to occupy the gas chambers until close, meaning no pigs were killed that day.
Tree defenders and sax solos in the Square
7-8 SEP | Parliament Square, London
Three brave rebels from HS2 Rebellion continue to hold their camp in the trees lining Parliament Square to protest the most expensive and environmentally destructive infrastructure project in UK history.
In a shocking abuse of power, the police denied the rebels food and water for 2 days, a grave violation of human rights protected by the Human Rights Act and The Prohibition Against Torture.
But that wasn’t going to stop the two compassionate members of the public who were arrested trying to pass essential supplies up to the brave tree protectors.
Rebel police liaisons and XR Doctors did a fantastic job of negotiating with the police, who have thankfully now backed down and are providing food, water, and even basic toiletries!
Photo: Gareth Morris
It’s been a killer conversation-starter in Parliament Square, with the most popular question being: are they ever coming down?
In one tree protector’s case, maybe not? He’s planning to stay in the tree beyond the rebellion:
“It means everything to me to live in this tree and unite with others to stop HS2, the UK’s most Ecocidal scheme. Thousands of homes, hundreds of ancient woods, and countless wildlife are under threat.”
While the rebels in the trees have been a focal point for the last two days, receiving a huge amount of love and support from those on the ground, the Rebellion in Parliament Square continues to be a lively hub of conversation, debate, and numerous spontaneous performances.
From the many scheduled trainings to improvised sax solos, to hula hoops and a man dressed as a pirate, the compassion and energy of the Rebellion has been easy to find in Parliament Square!
Throughout the week, several members were arrested for meditating at actions – nonviolent disobedience doesn’t get more peaceful than that! On Monday evening, a special ceremony brought the vigil to a close.
Lightship Greta hits a wall of cops
5 SEP | London
Here we can see a totally reasonable number of officers surrounding what is surely a very dangerous criminal vessel.
The Lightship Greta, a boat with a lighthouse for a mast and shopping trolley wheels, was finally wrecked by police on the A3 just after Kennington Park.
The red vessel had navigated some 70 miles of English roads over 6 long days of outreach, pushed over land and hill by a tireless rebel crew. By the time it rolled into south London, the boat’s reputation for peaceful protest was truly fearsome. Which is why it was met by over 100 police officers flanked by 14 police vans.
With the end in sight, one of the crew glued themselves to the vessel, while another chose to adhesively embrace the police removal vehicle. A third rebel was brutally pushed to the ground and hand-cuffed before they could reach their sticky target. The samba band played on to the bitter end.
Proportionate policing at its finest. Imagine if there had been 2 Lightships!
Greta’s epic voyage began on the seafront boundary between Brighton and Hove, and to get the ship to London required careful traffic management, pothole avoidance, blister cream, numerous impromptu campsites and a whole harbour-full of determination from the 30-strong crew.
As soon as it entered metropolitan police territory, the Lightship Greta and its little dinghy on bicycle wheels was tailed by a couple of police vans. The indications were that it would be given free passage to its East London destination, but then came the BBC cameras and a startling display of police might for all the nation to be impressed by.
Greta in happier, less police-filled lands.
The Lightship Greta may now be in impounded pieces, but the spirit of the crew who pushed her lives on. After those salty sea-rebels regenerate, you can be sure there will be more Moving Rebellions afoot…
For a more detailed log of Lightship Greta’s travels go here.
4 degrees is Mass Murder
7 SEP | London
A brave Bristol rebel climbed onto the canopy above the front door of the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy in protest against the government’s inaction to prevent 4 degrees of global warming.
The father of four, a former teacher, spray painted “4 degrees is mass murder” onto the glass. He then unfurled a banner reading “ACT NOW FOR ALL OUR CHILDREN”.
Photo: Gareth Morris
He said, “My youngest child is only one. Within her lifetime, scientists tell us that we are likely to see 4 degrees of global warming. This is a nightmare that has already begun for millions across the Global South, where drought and hunger are on the rise.
As a father I cannot accept that for my children, or anyone’s child.”
The government claims that we, rebels, are criminals who threaten our way of life. The truth is that their unwillingness to act now is the real threat to all of us.
Digital Rebellion rages on
Digital rebels are still keeping eyes, ears, web browsers and other available senses open to nudge MPs into supporting the CEE Bill.
Nine days in, 51 MPs have already pledged their support. But we still need many more to get this bill through Parliament, check if your MP is on this list and, if they’re not, ask them to back the bill with this easy online action.
Digital warriors have also called out the BBC, making official complaints after Today presenter Justin Webb suggested on Radio 4 to Tim Crosland that the climate emergency is ‘a matter of opinion’. We wonder if he would say that to Californians currently dealing with a record-breaking 367 wildfires… Bash on, Digi-rebels!Join these warriors from home, with new actions here, a 1000+ strong open Telegram group, daily zoom calls at 12 noon and everything you need to know here.
Even more fine photos from the Rebellion (aren’t our rebel photographers just the best?):
Rebels from XR Muslims formed a ‘human cube’, in honour of their holiest Kaaba in Mecca, site of the Hajj pilgrimage. Credit: Krisztian Kobold Elek
Rebels reading the ‘Daily Doggerel’ are assured that everything is under control. Photo: Mariana Ilaria
Another crime scene gets investigated, this time outside the Cabinet Office. Whoever’s doing all this ecocide must be one sick puppy. Photo: Henry Shaw
Maybe it’s mass extinction. Maybe it’s Maybelline. Credit: Guy Reece
A book exchange in Parliament Square, which also featured reading bubbles of a Covid-appropriate size.
Another beautiful, creative banner!
London & Digital. The final days of Action.
Be part of the final days of this wave of Rebellion.
Check the schedule and join the UK-wide and London broadcasts to keep up with the last slices of action. check the schedule and the London Telegram for all the latest action info. Or join in from home, with new digital actions here and a buzzing open Telegram group.
Open call for Impossible Content
A new content platform is being launched for XRUK, the impossible.
And we need your help. We’re looking for pitches from writers, photographers, picture editors, designers, animators, video editors and podcasters to get it started. More info on how to get involved here.
PJ, 25, Activist
Photo: Helena Smith
“They always will characterise actions like XR blocking News Corps printing facilities as an attack on the free press. But can we really call it a free press if it’s five people controlling the news?”
“The system we have now is the most violent that’s ever been, so this is the only way you can fight back in some senses. I’m all for anything we can do to stop the Murdoch-led press.”
“When you have movements like XR and Black Lives Matter fighting for any type of cause you naturally find the police against you, because the role of the police has always been to curtail social justice and to defend the state.”
Catch PJ’s radio show ‘Reclaiming the Narrative’ every Friday 9-11am.
We are receiving amazing human stories and we want to know yours. To read more – or to write your own – join our Facebook group.
Day 9 feels. What a trooper.
Thank you so much for reading! There’s so much going on that we barely have time to write this sign-off. Keep up the amazing work!
If you have any questions or queries, please get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org.
As we enter this crucial phase in human history, our Rebellion needs money to make sure our message is heard. Anything you can give is appreciated.