A day later and still nobody has taken responsibility for the disastrous events during the NUS March. The waste of public money, police time and attack on the civil liberties of those who worked around Millbank is unacceptable in today's society.
I don't think there is any point in going on who did this; the NUS blame some variant of militants whilst various good sources have now pinpointed students, NUS members and members of the NUS Exec as being involved. The fact is that it happened; but were either side prepared?
The police certainly weren't and I trust that Boris or a Home Office Minister are having very severe words with the Met for their handling. But when this event was being planned, did the NUS have a plan to deal with violence. They certainly should have foreseen this and done something about it. Mr Aaron Porter, Labour's NUS President, is responsible for the movement - the buck stops at the top. Did Mr Porter plan for there to be violence? If not, why not? And if he did why the plans totally unable to cope with the situation.
I am afraid that Mr Porter must also explain the bizarre poor choice of branding for this event - with stuff like this:
no wonder it attracted the thugish element we saw yesterday. You have to take responsibility for your deeds, yes, but so too for your words. I doubt Mr Porter has the honour to accept his part in this. He is putting his short-lived political career above the student fees movement because it would have far more credibility with the public if he put his hands up and apologized. And if Mr Porter will not do this, then his Executive Committee should force him too. And if they won't then the onus is back on ordinary members up and down the country to have their say ...