“Could those riots be related to the Norway bombing? Will the aftermath reveal the true reason behind these copycat lootings and arsons? Are we going to witness another example of multiculturalism failure, or rather provoked to the point of failure, in yet another European capital?”


by Dr. Ashraf Ezzat / My Catbird Seat

Sunday 7 August 2011: Fire rages through a building in Tottenham, north London, as trouble flared after members of the community took to the streets to protest over the  police shooting of local man Mark Duggan

Saturday 6 August 2011: Fire rages through a building in Tottenham, north London, as trouble flared after members of the community took to the streets to protest over the police shooting of local man Mark Duggan. Picture: Lewis Whyld/PA

A lot of pundits and opinion makers held back from rushing into commenting on the rioting that’s been taking place in London and other British main cities over the last few days simply because they were overawed by the unbelievably horrifying and unprecedented pictures of the seemingly mindless thuggery, vandalism and theft that were being broadcast live around the globe.

Great Britain, the European nation with the long legacy of unshakeable social traditions and respect for freedoms and private properties was being humiliated and embarrassed before the whole world by some groups of its new generation of small boys and girls.

You can comment on events you can understand but how could you react to eventualities that you don’t even believe you’re beholding.

Rioting for fun

The brazen looting by often drunk kids, who seemed to get a kick out of setting the city ablaze, made this whole inferno in need of behavioral sociology and psychiatry experts, and not the op-ed writers, to delve into this grotesque situation and analyze the reasons behind it.
YouTube – Veterans Today -London Riot Girls ‘Brag’ About Violence

Buildings burn on Tottenham High Road, London after youths protested against the killing of Mark Duggan by armed police in an attempted arrest

The British police has not been the only party caught by surprise by this unprecedented rioting the British government, as clearly shown by Mr. Cameron statements, has not been less startled or bewildered but that doesn’t make him or his government less responsible for it.

Mr. Cameron has referred to the riots as acts of pure criminality that could not be accepted or justified by any means but while that statement struck a chord in the British house of parliament it demonstrated a total ignorance and lack of understanding on the part of Cameron’s government of the nature of the breakdown in the British society.

Mark Duggan

Looking at the footages and pictures of the London riots, released by the mainstream media and uploaded on the web, we couldn’t help noticing that all of the rioters are simply kids in their mid-teens. And yet those kids sowed fear and did harm to their communities like never been witnessed since the London blitz.

All this talk about how this anarchy was triggered by the killing of a Tottenham black man, 29 -year-old, Mark Duggan or trying to historically relate it to the Brixton riots of the early eighties somehow seems hardly relevant to the completely disproportionate violence and copycat looting and vandalism that erupted afterwards.

Remembering Egypt riots

In Egypt a similar incident of the killing of an Alexandria resident, 28-year-old, Khalid Saeed, by two police detectives who beat him to death last year has considerably sparked and contributed to the first mass rallies that led to the January 25 uprising.

But the rallies and the thousands who took to the streets of Alexandria and Cairo were peaceful protesters who rallied for undeniably good and just cause with specific demands that primarily called for political freedoms, equality and social justice.

But when we turn back to the British riots we fail to see any obvious criteria to help us recognize it as political or socio-economic upheaval and as the famous comedian, John Bishop condemned the violence on Richard Bacon’s BBC 5 live programme and said: “None of us really know what’s driving it. It’s not rioting for any political reason, it’s not rioting for any social motivation, it’s not even rioting for a materialistic reason because once the lootings done why set fire to the building? And that to me, gives some sort of indication that people don’t feel socially connected to the environment they’re in.”

Similar looting and arson have racked major Egyptian cities during the uprising but later we discovered that those acts of vandalism were preplanned by the Mubarak regime loyalists and his state security apparatus. Will the coming days reveal a hidden link to the London riots?

Could those riots be related to the Norway bombing? Will the aftermath reveal the true reason behind these copycat lootings and arsons? Are we going to witness another example of multiculturalism failure, or rather provoked to the point of failure, in yet another European capital?

War on terrorism and the European looming recession

Young Londoners looting stores

I think while the successive British governments have been engaged and fully preoccupied in allying with the United States in the so called global war on terrorism, the British policy makers, and a lot of other European governments, have overlooked the plausibility that by their military overspending in the illegal wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and now in Libya they were not only full speed into bankruptcy but also falling short in tackling other vital domestic issues like proper education and employment.

The taxpayer bailout of corrupt banks initiated by predecessor Prime ministers and now overseen by Cameron, paid for in large part by austerity in public spending cuts that have consequently weighed down on the housing, proper education and employment of the new generation is but the latest realization of Karl Marx words “An accumulation of wealth at one pole of society indicates an accumulation of misery and overwork at the other”. That is the hallmark of capitalism in today’s Britain, the US and Europe.

What on earth were those marginalized British teens thinking?

Well, that is not so hard to figure out. If you can control what people see, hear and read you can pretty much control what they think. And the crimes those young Londoners have apathetically committed testify To the reality that those teens were brought up under the street laws, forsaken by their government, addicted to violent video games and booze and subjected to too much Harry potter and street gangs’ movies.

Emulating Tahrir Square sit-in.

Protests in Israel

Mr. Cameron mentioned that he will not allow a culture of fear to prevail in England but somehow ignored the fact that many governments dating back to Mr. Tony Blair’s contributed to this culture of fear by allowing a whole new generation to grow up with no sense of national belonging and with extremely worrying anti-social attitude.

Ever since the Egyptian uprising erupted and the Tahrir square sit-in example has been emulated in so many countries, we have seen it in Bahrain, Yemen, Spain and lately in Israel.

In Yemen and Bahrain the protests were calling for pro-democracy measures, in Spain they were protesting unemployment and in Israel, besides protesting the high cost of living and housing the Israelis subconsciously are trying to linger this unprecedented moment not only to pressure Netanyahu’s government into making economical concessions but also to bask in the warm feeling that the world is watching them, and may be for the first time, not as an aggressive military Middle-Eastern enclave but as a nation, for a change.

But in England we failed to see through all the riots and the arsons except the fear and a society on the verge of anarchy and Reeves’ Corner, Croyden is certainly not London’s Tahrir square.

Mr. Cameron can blame this whole anarchy on hoodies and facemasks, on blackberry and Twitter, on discriminatory police conduct and lack of proper parenting but the fact will remain that the British society is evolving into some new polarized society the lower classes of which have exhibited in the past few days a nationwide tendency towards forsaking an old British value of respecting pro-sociability and adopting instead the primitive comradeship that is only a good value for street mobs and rebels without a cause.

YouTube – Veterans Today -London riots – Rebels without a cause

Dr Ashraf Ezzat is a medical doctor by profession. In his spare time he writes about ancient Egyptian history, Ancient Near Eastern history, comparative religion and politics especially the Arab- Israeli conflict. He is founder and board member of the bibliotheca Alexandrina friends society. For more articles by Dr. Ashraf Ezzat visit his website

See original article at: Veterans Today 


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  1. oddie on the 16. Aug, 2011 remarked #

    peter oborne at the UK Telegraph makes a lot of sense:

    11 August: Telegraph blog: Peter Oborne: The moral decay of our society is as bad at the top as the bottom

  2. sparrowfahrenheit on the 16. Aug, 2011 remarked #

    Bankers loot the government. Kids loot the shops. Kids!

  3. Debbie Menon on the 16. Aug, 2011 remarked #

    Welcome to the global uprising. The youth of the world know they have been screwed by their politicians. We are right now witnessing a world thats cracking up!

    How’d that old song go? Freedom’s just another word for nothing left to lose.

    Yes, the moral decay of our society is as bad at the top as the bottom, London’s burning, the youth of the world are angry and uprising? Birds of a feather, flocking together…. and coming home to roost ?

    Any Realistic view of reality has to be pessimistic by nature. Anyone who thinks differently is simply not aware of the depth of the doo-doo in which the world has gotten itself.

    Is anyone going to get us out? I really doubt it.

    I cannot name one man or woman in a position to do anything about the situation who was not a major player in creating it in the first place.

    There is a vicious and mad beast loose in the desert, and he is stalking, but his future is writ in the stones of Ozymandias who lie buried in the sands.

  4. James on the 16. Aug, 2011 remarked #

    When faced with (London as opposed to England) government complicity and intention in deceiving the public about Wars and Economic Crimes, and the general degradation of justice and accountability throughout the system. All human beings of conscience object to the systemic violation of fair play rules. The tension builds to a crescendo and erupts, and then action commences to remedy the injustice.

  5. Paul on the 16. Aug, 2011 remarked #

    The “violent video games” horse is dead, stop flogging it!

  6. Steve on the 17. Aug, 2011 remarked #

    Not only is the violent video games analogy not dead, but I’d go much further. I’d include violent, biased, racist-by-nature ‘news’ (propaganda), violent movies, violent music videos, violent, racist police forces, violent wars based on lies, and much, much more. Then I’d throw in some disenfranchisement, some lack of hope, some lack of opportunity just for good measure, and to be realistic.
    Many of these “kids” (a term I find repugnant when applied to young adults) were infants and very young children when Britain helped propel the world and the ‘coalition of the willing’ into a war based completely on lies and false moralizing in Iraq and Afghanistan, benefitting only oligarchs and Israel. Many of these “kids” have seen first-hand the support Britain gives to Israel as it massacres thousands of people anywhere it pleases (Gaza, West Bank, Lebanon – just since 2006), leaving the internet strewn with images of babies’ brains on the ground and entire families reduced to ponds of blood, while insisting it’s Jewish supporters worldwide always be called ‘victims’. Many of these “kids” have seen education, social services, and much of their nation’s supporting infrastructure cut to provide funding for these murderous, genocidal lies, and to line the pockets of slimy bankers and politicians.
    Indeed, if I was one of these “kids”, I might also not know right from wrong. We have created a world that is about to be set ablaze by an ideology of supremacy and elitism that has now become obscene. I suggest folks go to YouTube and watch Massive Attack – A Prayer For England (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XnBswcr_L7k ). Someone put together a music video for this popular song well before the outbreak of rioting in London. Is it a prophecy? Of course not. When you steal so much from others, when you permanently disenfranchise huge swaths of humans based on skin color, religion, when you steal the future of millions to satisfy the insatiable, psychopathic greed of a privileged few, then you have created the tinder for the fires you will begin to see raging all around you.
    I believe the core of this problem has to do with elitism, and I believe that Israel and Zionist/Jewish interests are at the heart of the matter. I believe England (and all the western allies) have helped a criminal cause spread a criminal ideology of hatred (of Islam) throughout the world. This has disenfranchised not millions, but billions. As we move into the closing phase of human domination on earth, we will see a police state form, one more hideous than anything most of us can imagine. I agree with Debbie – there is no stopping it now. It has shaped the minds of hundreds of millions who have been duped by insanely biased, Zion-centric media. I witness Islamophobia and racist speak in every social situation I encounter – fed and trained by this media we call ‘free’. We are down the gurgler. We have been sold-out. It is a great shame because a peaceful, equitable world is now at hand. This crime against humanity has been perpetrated by a small group of highly intelligent psychopaths with insane greed, who know how to manipulate the minds of the masses because they come from the kind of privilege that enabled them to study our minds (while most of our forefathers were struggling to feed themselves and their children).
    “Kids” – we’re all “kids”! This is a big, ugly schoolyard fight where the bullies use lies, fear, deceit, atomic bombs, depleted uranium dust, separation walls, drones, roaming gangs of thugs (army, mercenary), tanks, guns and grenades – against the masses who have nothing but sticks and stones and Molotov cocktails.

  7. Skulz Fontaine on the 17. Aug, 2011 remarked #

    The “riots.” You know, it just seems worlds of curious that the ‘lessor’ segments of UK commercial society were torched. Seems the ‘upper crust’ was sparred the angry vitriol of unruly mobs. Why might that be?
    I’m thinking that maybe this was all an elaborate hoax. Pure conjecture on my part and I concede that. The ruined businesses are not hoax. Cui bono?
    IF the unruly hooligans were about the business of actual and for reals “revolution”, well, why not burn Harrods? To the freaking ground. Burn #10 Downing Street. The unruly hooligans did NOT. Curious yes, curious indeed.

  8. Earlaiman on the 18. Aug, 2011 remarked #

    All of the mercantile “businesses” burned or damaged have insurance. Their losses are nil, and the profits derived from the Insurance scam on the World Trade Center, for instance, demonstrate how profitable Insurance claims can be.

    Burning 10 Downing street?

    Don’t be foolish. You walk within three blocks of that place with a Zippo in hand, you gonna get yo’ skinny ass shot off and you will never even know it it will happen so fast and efficiently!


  9. ubear on the 28. Aug, 2011 remarked #

    Insurance will not compensate for all the ‘merchantile’ loses, given the payout will not be under 100%, not pay for weeks of lost business, and money is not the only other loss, jobs will also be lost, as will other less tangible benefits.

    I suggest that this is due to cultural and moral nihilism (e.g. Political Correctness, bogus Cultural Relativism, political cowardice and blatant criminality in the higher layers up in ‘society’); this set the stage for this and other symptoms of the ongoing decline. I would not dismiss the idea that Agent Provocateurs and existing criminals also played a role too.

    The Political Class must accept that their nihilism and criminal behavior and the criminal behavior of corporations which they allowed and continue to allow is the root cause of this rot and decline of empire; so fix it sharpish, by jailing even very rich criminals, to set a moral example!

  10. ubear on the 28. Aug, 2011 remarked #

    Debbie Menon is right.

    My suggestion for all:
    be prepared in this stealthy, rolling train wreck and don’t rely on any help off the state, you must become Sovereigns; Sovereigns are prepared and accumulate Bullion because all paper (currency) is ultimately worthless, and Bullion is always the money of last resort.

    Be forewarned, the bets are still on that we are zig-zagging into or in a Depression, rather than just a Recession. A Depression is not just a financial phenomena and greater poverty, millions of people can lose everything!

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