[caption id="attachment_9632" align="alignleft" width="600" caption="The abuse & torture unleashed by the GSU"]
“All of us are ready to die right now if that’s what they want, we just want them to know that it is the whole of Belize that will suffer, and innocent people will pay the cost because innocent people are among us”.
These were the chilling words uttered on the television screen by a member of the notorious George Street Gang (GSG) after he and his “boys” were viciously brutalized by the now equally notorious Gang Suppression Unit (GSU) on the evening of Friday, August 26, 2011.
The bloody confrontation unfolded following the GSG’s burial of one of their “fallen soldiers”, Charles Woodeye, who was executed inside the Dolphin Street Fire Station on August 14, 2011. Family and friends had gathered at a George Street address for his repast, but their mourning would be rudely disrupted and disrespected as Barrow’s “goon squad” descended on them like a swarm of killer bees.
With their “beat down first and ask questions later” M.O., the masked members of the GSU, brandishing guns, pepper sprays, tasers, batons and metal baseball bats, unleashed their terror on everyone inside the home where the repast was being held. Stomping on doors, smashing car windows, breaking beer/rum bottles, tossing food in the air, destroying furniture and appliances, Barrow’s mercenaries went on a rampage on the crowd of mourners.
At the end of their terror, the injuries sustained by members of the GSG and residents of the area were many and of varying degrees. Those injuries included broken limbs, heads burst open, broken jaws, bruised and burnt skin. The brutalization didn’t end there; however, as the victims, totaling some forty (40) persons, mostly men, were dragged off to the infamous “pisshouse” at Eastern Division and Ladyville Police Station where the GSU and other members of the Police Department continued the onslaught. In his television interview, one of the detainees, who was eventually one of only two charged, said that one of the Police Officers shouted to them that “Barrow” ordered that they be detained for a total of sixty-eight hours.
Reports are that the entire episode was precipitated by the Mesopotamia Police Substation being shot up earlier in the evening. Obviously enraged at the attack on their comrades, the GSU stormed onto Dean Street and carried out their torment on anyone in their path.
Making absolutely no apologies, Barrow’s “urban terrorists” proceeded to release pepper spray indiscriminately into a crowd of children who had just returned from a pre-carnival motorcade. The leader of the junior carnival group and a Justice of the Peace also fell victim to the GSU’s barbarism. It is reported that during the time the members of the GSU were terrorizing the mourners and residents of George Street, they turned their savagery on a “blind” defenseless man. Even innocent citizens could not escape the GSU’s cruelty.
The events of Friday, August 26, 2011 serve to confirm what the PUP and the BELIZE TIMES have been saying ever since the formation of the Gang Suppression Unit (GSU), i.e. it is Barrow’s personal “death squad” that has one mission and one mission only which is to SEEK
. And as the television images clearly showed, the GSU SOUGHT
on Friday, August 26th.
No right thinking, law-abiding citizen inhabiting the 8,866 square miles of this country would deny the fact that our country, particularly the Old Capital, is under siege by criminal elements. Moreover, we all agree that there is something that needs to be done urgently to arrest the burgeoning crime problem and that the Government of Belize is first and foremost responsible for identifying the remedies. Those remedies, however, must never be implemented in haste and must never disregard and violate the basic human rights of our citizens.
Dean Barrow has created a monster in the GSU and that monster has now gone completely out of control. With absolutely no regard for the law and human rights, the members of the GSU, under instruction of Barrow and his ghost Police Minister, continue to terrorize and brutalize. The irony, no doubt, has to be that while the GSU was formed to “suppress” gang activity in Belize City, the Unit, itself, has now become Belize’s “most feared gang”.
As the latest victims of their terror exclaimed, “If you are a mask man, then what kind of police are you? That is showing us that they have their own gang - Dean Barrow Bad Man Gang. I think they are Dean Barrow’s Death Squad. It looks like he built his Death Squad; that is what I think. GSU is Gang Stupid Unit. That is Dean Barrow’s Death Squad. GSU can’t stop any problem. GSU is making problems.”
The GSU, like the highly controversial “Proposed Ninth Amendment”, is proof positive that Dean Oliver Barrow is a modern day DICTATOR. While Belize is not being bombed by NATO Forces, Barrow is no different from the Ahmadinejads, Mubaraks, Gaddafis of the world. Like these dictators, Barrow is intent on suppressing his own people and punishing them if they dare to challenge him.
Following the horrific events of Friday, August 26, 2011, it is now evident that war has been declared between the George Street Gang (GSG) and the Gang Suppression Unit (GSU). If this were to be a war solely between these two “gangs”, hardly anyone would be concerned. But as when it comes to gang warfare, there exists no “rules of engagement” and it means that inevitably, there will be “collateral damage”. To repeat the frightening words of the GSG member, “… innocent people will pay the cost because innocent people are among us …”
Like their supreme commander, and here, we’re referring to Dean Barrow and not Marco Vidal, the GSU is DANGEROUS for Belize. It is because of this realization that the People’s United Party has publicly committed to disbanding the band of mercenaries immediately upon assuming office in 2013.
The members of the GSG plan to do some disbanding of their own. Like many poor, suffering Belizeans, they’ve now realized that to Dean Barrow, everyone is dispensable. In the words of one GSG member, “After we vote in Dean Barrow, this is what he did to us; he chance us. Next Elections, we will X him and the UDP out”.