Tommy Taylor's account "Arrested and Abused at the G-20" is frightening. Will it make any great difference to public perceptions? I doubt it ! However, it is great that there is a coherent, cogent account of what happened.
I was involved with Sinn Fein here all the way from a street protest party excluded from power right through to seeing our party share Regional Government in the Northern part of Ireland and having a significant presence in the Southern Irish Parliament. I was also on the Party National Executive for most of a decade and have seen and made politics from the inside-out and top-down as well as street level up. Because of this, perhaps these comments may carry a little more weight.
1) While this mass citizen arrest took place during the summit meeting protests, it is obvious that far more is involved here than the mere optics of justifying costs. Anyone familiar with accounts of the round-up of citizens in Chile after the overthrow of the Allende Government there, and the imposition of a military dictatorship, can identify the parallels in the detention procedures.
2) The police cars abandoned for burning etc, the presence of large numbers of specially equipped forces apparently tasked for specific purposes, the transport, the prepared cages etc. indicates more than a reaction to a protest situation. Rather it points to a 'dry run' training exercise using the cover of the summit protest.'