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Marina Pepper: A call to Smash Edo, the Brighton arms company.

Edo is a British, Brighton based arms company that manufactures a tiny clip that releases bombs from warplanes. Here noted activist and liberal politician Marina Pepper tells us about 'masking up', Black Bloc tactics and why she wants you do to likewise and join her at the upcoming protest in Brighton to 'Smash Edo'.

On January 18th I’m getting dressed up in black , wrapping a scarf around my face and taking to the streets of my home city: Brighton. I shall be part of a mass demo against the arms manufacturers EDO/MBM/ITT which makes a bomb component right here on my doorstep.

A year ago this small clip, made with local skilled labour and precision tools, was utilised in the skies above Palestine. It enabled bombs to be released from warplanes. On impact the bombs blew children and their families to smithereens. Around 1,400 human lives were massacred and their communities all but destroyed.

So? 12 months on we will Remember Gaza. Yet this demo has another edge to it. Organised by 'Smash EDO', a community group formed to drive EDO out of our town, we look to the future as much as the past.

We understand that bomb factories are a symptom of the Capitalist system that puts profits before the lives of people and indeed is prepared to make a profit from our deaths. That can’t be right, can it?

What makes this demo more pertinent than ever is that the fluffies – the peaceful climate change campaigners fresh back from Copenhagen - are somewhat put out that their huge efforts at civilised disobedience made absolutely no difference at the failed UN climate talks.

The upshot is this: We’re all black bloc now!


Palestinians, Climate Campers, Quakers, anti-militarists, the diaspora, concerned residents. We are all now the enemies of the state. We will unite, we shall wear black, we shall rise up and we shall – if that’s what it takes – smash the system. In a peaceful sort of way, obviously. After all we’re “fighting” murderers. Let’s not stoop to their level. Maybe we won’t smash Capitalism. But we’re going to do our darned hardest to smother it.

I first masked up with Climate Camp when we swooped on the coal-fired power station at Ratcliffe-on-Soar in September. It made me braver. It protected my identity. And it generated a huge feeling of solidarity among my fellow masked up protesters that I can only describe as “Love”.

Please join me and others like me on 18th January. Our argument is not with local residents – we shan’t wreck the place. But the bomb factory and its investors (say a bank like Barclays) are legitimate targets. We shall be creative, fluid, be ready for new ideas and to welcome all into our movement. Let our protest be contagious, let our dissent go viral.

We are the people we’ve been waiting for. Let’s go.

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