Friday, April 29, 2016

UK police spied on Green politicians - again

More revelations of police political spying in the UK - this time on Green party politicians:

A secretive police unit tasked with spying on alleged extremists intent on committing serious crimes has been monitoring leading members of the Green party, the Guardian has learned.

Newly released documents show that the intelligence unit has been tracking the political activities of the MP Caroline Lucas and Sian Berry, the party’s candidate for London mayor.

Some of the monitoring took place as recently as last year and seemed to contradict a pledge from Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe, the Metropolitan police commissioner, that the unit would only target serious criminals rather than peaceful protesters.

Extracts from the files show that the police have chronicled how the Green politicians had been speaking out about issues such as government cuts, the far right, police violence, and the visit of the pope.

Dangerous, radical stuff. Practically terrorism. Society clearly needs to be protected from these dangerous malcontents who seek to convince people peacefully, get elected, and change the law by democratic means!

Former Green mayoral candidate Jenny Jones gets it right: the UK police exist to protect the establishment. The Greens criticise, oppose, and ultimately threaten that establishment. And that is why they are targeted for political spying. But it is fundamentally undemocratic, the sort of thing you'd expect in a third world dictatorship, not a supposed democracy like the UK.