Half of the point of our tank action at the DSEi arms fair was to raise the public profile of the fact that the worlds largest arms fair happens in East London every two years. A fact that seems to be largely ignored by the media, keeping the general public unaware of what is going on in their back yard and being organised by their government.

Below is a selection of the media coverage we managed to gain with our project, hopefully putting the spotlight on the fair, and putting the arms dealers under a bit more public scrutiny.

 

Group4Securicor Briefing

Look forward – DSEi Arms Fair, 11–14 September 2007 - Disarm DSEi, ExCel Centre, Docklands.
‘AGAINST THE WAR – AGAINST THE ARMS TRADE’

‘Disarm DSEi’, and other anti-war protest groups are planning action for the event. Held at the ExCel Centre, Docklands, the fair is being labelled as the ‘world’s biggest arms fair’. Disarm DSEi have identified 11 September as a day of action, but protest is likely for the whole week. Disarm DSEi state ‘11 September 2007 – One Day – Many Actions – You Decide! Blockade? Party? Destroy? March? Smash? Infiltrate? Picket? Harass? Clown? Dance? Light candles? Fight? Lock On? Vigil? Disrupt . . . We must not let them meet without disruption and opposition. Join us and take action. Say no to war. Say no to the Arms Trade’.

Various tactics have been discussed. An organised action will take place at 13:00 on 11 September at Custom House DLR to disrupt DSEi. Other actions include a camp or convergence centre near to the event or closer to London city centre, a critical mass, and the of purchasing a decommissioned military vehicle is a possibility, SpaceHijackers, a group involved with protests at DSEi in the past, are actively fund raising to buy a tank. The vehicle would create disruption for the event and traffic to and from the Docklands area. ‘Lock-ons’, banner drops, paint-balling buildings and offices, and infiltration of DSEi are other likely actions. Protests have not always remained local – past Arms Fairs have seen associated offices in London city paintballed and ‘D’ locked, Trafalgar square fountains turned red with paint, and the Dockland Light Railway heavily disrupted.

 

Newspaper clippings about the tank and DSEi arms fair - click to enlarge
Tanks for the memories
The Independent
10/08/07

Tanks a million
Time Out
Please don't park that on our lawn
The Times
11/09/07
Police block tank protest
The Evening Standard
11/09/07
Anti arms campaigners fool police
Protestors drive tank to arms expo
The London Paper
12/09/07
Protesters wheel our their big guns
Time Out
18/09/07
Television coverage of the fair - click to view
BBC London News
11/09/07

Defence fair under attack
By Angela Saini
Hundreds of protestors have been demonstrating to stop the UK's largest defence exhibition from coming to the Docklands every two years

Internet coverage of the fair - click to open in new window
Indymedia - DSEi: A Week Of Actions Against The Arms Trade
Independent Online - Dangerous weapon that is Mark
Wired News - All the Fun of The Fair - By David Hambling
The China Post - Arms trade fair in London opens amid protests, arrests
Live PR - Arms trade fair opens in London amid protests and uncertainty over its future
Bloggerheads - DSEI: who are the police protecting?