I see children’s wagons being hauled in. Bottles of rotgut alcohol. And torn rags. I don’t have to ask. Molotov cocktails.
I walk around the busy protest camp. It is as busy as an ant hill. People take turns hauling tires or plywood or reinforcement wires to reinforce the barricades. More bungee cord catapults are being created. The debate is what to fire at the riot police. The organizers keep saying we have to stay non lethal until the riot police ‘start it’. Start the war I guess. I see more and more of the stronger chaps arming in improvised armor cobbled together out of motorcycle gear, bits of metal, and used junk, all turned into a sort of crazy punk medieval armor. Others actually wear damn armor! Some have sticks. Some have driven long nails into the sticks to make clubs. Some have batons. Some have cobbled batons into medieval weapons of war. Maces. Some have found knifes. Others are still in vulnerable civilian winter clothes. Some still wear silly plastic masks. More are moving into motorcycle or sky helmets with visors and gas masks. Steam punkers are handing out retro goggles that protect the eyes against tear gas and water cannon which makes our toy water cannon and water rifles appear absurdly puny. A truck comes with snow balls. I laugh. One ‘manufacturer’ whispers ‘We are putting rocks inside the snow and ducking them in ice to form cannon balls’. I ask him how many his ‘factory’ is churning out. He laughs. ‘We have hundreds of volunteers mate! People too scared to fight here are volunteering their time supplying us with ammo.’ But I see children’s wagons being hauled in. Bottles of rotgut alcohol. And torn rags. I don’t have to ask. Molotov cocktails.