IRR News 14 January 2021: Policing the Covid Crisis

14 January 2021 — Institute of Race Relations

At a time when the Metropolitan police has had to concede more oversight of pre-arrest handcuffing, we publish the first ever investigation of the new Violence Suppression Units (VSUs), introduced without fanfare at the start of the pandemic in London. In the past, criticism has been levelled at the use of similar specialist squads like the SPG and the TSG in multicultural working-class neighbourhoods. Now, Jessica Pandian questions whether the introduction of VSUs heralds the Americanisation of gang policing, pointing out that suspicion of gang affiliation could be used more systematically, as it is in the US, to justify deportation decisions.

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Ken Livingstone to challenge EHRC in court

14 January 2021 — The Electronic Intifada

Asa Winstanley

Ken Livingstone – Left Legal Fighting Fund

Ken Livingstone is going to court in the UK to challenge anti-Semitism allegations.

The former mayor of London is contesting the Equality and Human Rights Commission’s controversial report that in October claimed he was guilty of “unlawful harassment” against Jews.

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Raskolnikov’s Dream Come True

12 January 2021 — Edward Curtin

by Edward Curtin

Something is happening here,
But you don’t know what it is,
Do you, Mr. Jones?
— Bob Dylan, Ballad of a Thin Man, 1965

It’s hard.

Life today seems like a dream, doesn’t it?  Surreal to the point where everything seems haunted and betwixt and between, or this against that, or that and this against us.


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Don’t forget who is coming to pillage post-Brexit Britain

14 January 2021 — True Publica

Don't forget who is coming to pillage post-Brexit Britain

By TruePublica: No country has willingly left a postwar trading bloc, especially one of the three global super-powers of today. And because there is no precedent, it is true to say that not only does Brexit represent a very large threat to Britain’s economic future prospects – it does so because it’s just a gamble. And the so-called trade deal Boris Johnson has signed with the EU is very weak. Much of that weakness will develop over the coming months, especially as 80 per cent of Britain’s economy has yet to be negotiated within that agreement.

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9/11 Was the Prelude. 1/6 Is the Holy Grail

13 January, 2021 — Strategic Culture FoundationAsia Times
Pepe Escobar
Whether civil war is coming will depend on the degree of stoicism prevalent among the Deplorable multitudes.

I hear the sons of the city and dispossessed
Get down, get undressed
Get pretty but you and me
We got the kingdom, we got the key
We got the empire, now as then
We don’t doubt, we don’t take direction
Lucretia, my reflection, dance the ghost with me

Sisters of Mercy, Lucretia my Reflection

9/11 was the prelude. 1/6 is the Holy Grail.

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Peter Doshi: Pfizer and Moderna’s ‘95% Effective’ Vaccines — Let’s Be Cautious and First See the Full Data

13 January 2021 — The Defender

Only full transparency and rigorous scrutiny of the data will allow for informed decision making.

In the United States, all eyes are on Pfizer and Moderna. The topline efficacy results from their experimental covid-19 vaccine trials are astounding at first glance. Pfizer says it recorded 170 covid-19 cases (in 44,000 volunteers), with a remarkable split: 162 in the placebo group versus 8 in the vaccine group. Meanwhile Moderna says 95 of 30,000 volunteers in its ongoing trial got covid-19: 90 on placebo versus 5 receiving the vaccine, leading both companies to claim around 95% efficacy.

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