The protests in Montebello this week had one major difference from those in Quebec City in 2001: YouTube. Videotape evidence is the great truth-teller in a world where denials are cheap. It’s what turned Rodney King from just another crazy-talking black guy exaggerating a routine police matter into a media sensation and a giant black eye for the Los Angeles Police Department.
Militant protesters who see police brutality as the norm rather than the exception are increasingly using video cameras to safeguard their rights and prove the police are out to get them while they plant flowers peacefully.
One of the videos out of Montebello shows an interesting idea that seems to be gaining popularity: That those violent rock-throwing mask-wearing protesters are actually under-cover police officers and government agents ordered to provoke a violent altercation between police and protesters to give police an excuse to move in and start beating people up.
Today I received an email from a group which includes Jaggi Singh (who himself has been quietly accused by some paranoid crazy-thinking friends of mine of being an undercover cop), and it links to the video with some conjecture:
Is there a cover-up of the police agents that are revealed in the above video? Were the police trying to create divisions between protesters by provoking an incident?
The video itself shows three such protesters, one holding a rock, provoking the police. What’s interesting is that they’re being stopped by other protesters — some normal-looking suit-wearing Council of Canadians/union leftists, others peacenik hippie mask-wearing-but-not-rock-throwing chant-yellers — and both groups are accusing them of being police officers.
Some other Montebello videos: