That iPhone line just got longer.

Looks like Apple’s gonna have some sourcing problems, if this keeps up:

A brawl involving as many as 2,000 workers forced Foxconn to close its Taiyuan plant in northern China late on Sunday, and left a number of people needing hospital treatment.

“The fight is over now … we’re still investigating the cause of the fight and the number of workers involved,” said Foxconn spokesman Louis Woo, adding it was possible it involved “a couple of thousand workers”.

A police statement reported by the official Xinhua news agency said 5,000 officers were dispatched to the scene.

The violence was brought under control after about four hours and 40 people were taken to hospitals for treatment, the Taiwanese-owned company said. It said several people were detained by police.

The violence did not appear to be work-related, the company and police said.

“Did not appear to be work-related”? I call bullshit. Remember this? Foxconn workers have been driven to suicide by the conditions at their sweatshops. And it is far from the first time that this has happened.

This is the same factory that produces the new iPhone 5. Yes, the one that people are lining up for, even camping out so they can get their hot little hands on it. (Ironically, the cops won’t arrest them; it’s apparently acceptable to occupy a public sidewalk in defence of rampant capitalism.)

Now, once more, the Chinese workers are rising up in protest. What else could it be? One does NOT send 5,000 police officers to put down a mere “brawl” between worker factions from two different parts of the country (yes, that’s the excuse). The last time I saw a deployment of cops in the thousands, the G20 was on in Toronto, and there were over a thousand protesters being “kettled” in the streets by those armored stormtroopers.

They are lying to us. Lying in an effort to keep working conditions — and workers — down. All so that we’ll keep on buying things we really don’t need. And all so that it won’t hurt Apple’s stock.

I won’t be buying an iPhone anytime soon.

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