Articles on Riots

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The cultural context in which class, ethnic and racial tensions explode into open violence must be analysed honestly. AAP Image/Paul Miller

Friday essay: a response to the Cronulla riots, ten years on

Australia's key foundation stories have a narrative arc based on the slow simmering of social tension and anxiety culminating in an explosive release of group hostility. Was Cronulla any different?
A bit of crowd control – nothing heavy-handed. EPA/Michael Reynolds

What led to the Baltimore riots?

Better handling of peaceful protests at the death of Freddie Gray might have prevented the riots.
Protestors in Ferguson, Missouri, after the Monday evening announcement of no charges over a teenager’s killing. EPA/Tannen Maury

Timing of the Ferguson case may have made the riots worse

The announcement Monday evening in the US that there would be no charges against a policeman over the shooting of a teenager is puzzling and already the target of critique. It’s not just the decision itself…
The G20 summit in Toronto in 2010 was marred by violent clashes between protestors and police. Will there be a repeat in Queensland later this year? EPA/Warren Toda

State of anarchy: policing Queensland for the G20

Queensland will be on the world stage when it hosts some of the most powerful world leaders during the G20 summit this November. But how prepared is Queensland for the expected protests at the event, and…
Thailand’s political crisis is spiralling into an intractable conflict. Wally Santana/AP

Thailand may be heading down a violent path of no return

After street clashes between groups of armed protesters on Saturday, many feared that Sunday’s election in Thailand would see an upsurge in violence. Anti-government protesters who opposed the vote had…
Smash the system, not traffic lights. flikr/bobaliciouslondon

Why aren’t unemployed young people rioting in the streets?

A fifth of Britain’s young people are out of work; how long before they snap? The International Labour Organisation has recently issued warnings about possible youth unrest in the future, as young people…
Young people who feel excluded from mainstream politics often join extreme groups to ‘belong’. AFP/Wojtek Radwanski

Youth violence and group identity: understanding radical protest

Many young people in Europe think violent protest can be a legitimate response to the political system they feel no connection to. They believe government pays very little attention to them and have very…
London’s burning: but the rioters had a point. EPA/Kerim Okten

English riots were neither mindless nor purely criminal

The powers that be describe the street violence and social upheaval which took place in England’s major cities last week as “mindless”. Yet it was anything but. Prime Minister David Cameron, among others…
English police have defended their tactics in the riots. AFP/Leon Neal

Police anger after they cop the blame for English riots

English police officers have defended their handling of the riots which erupted in several cities across the country last week. After the worst urban disorder in living memory, leading politicians are…
A shop in Manchester city centre boarded after being attacked by looters. AAP

The English riots: it wasn’t youth gangs

The recent riots in major English cities like London have seen the media focus on the involvement of young people. In particular, many media outlets have claimed that organised youth gangs have orchestrated…
Using strong arm tactics like water cannon and tear gas won’t deal with the wider problem. EPA/Kerim Okten

Heavy-handed police tactics won’t curb English riots

The violence that took hold of London at the weekend has spread to other English cities. Sixteen thousand police were on the streets of the capital on Tuesday night, but the trouble has extended to Manchester…

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