WSF Bulletin March 27th 2009

Tord Björk | global crisis,International action,popular movements,Repression | Tuesday, March 31st, 2009

The situation is heating up in the follow up on the call of action from World Social Forum in Belem in January and other places. In London a whole university were the alternative summit to the G-20 meeting was scheduled have been closed. Among the speakers were a former minister, mayor, members of parliament, professors and many others. Today a call was made to not accept the closure.

Those in power seems to believe in attacking the infrastructure of the movement, only politicians are allowed to meet and have qualified discussions. The political opposition becomes physically impossible. It seems like a crazy strategy. It destroys possibilities for motivating a coordinated politically response and promotes chaos. The EU Summit in Gothenburg 2001 is a clear example when the closure of a counter summit and convergence center created disorder.

The strategy has been used against the global justice movements since 2000 as a proactive police tactic in response to what happened at the WTO meeting in Seattle. It was than brought to Europe by the US educated police boss Håkan Jaldung in Gothenburg. It seems like the London organizers responds in a more political way. In Gothenburg the whole organizational core was broken down as the police encircled the alternative summit and convergence center with 150 containers and then arrested 450 persons inside. In the chaos the organizers were not able to establish political alliances caught in the practical problems that occured. Lets hope that in London that the US kind of way to proactively attack the right to gather people and create chaos in the interest of mass media and the police will be met with more combined political alliance building and mass action.

Below you find the content of the WSF Bulletin March 27th 2009 as i could not find it on the official WSF web site:

Global  week of mobilisation and action against capitalism and war

From  the 28th March to the 4th April, women and men from all over  the world will be in the streets to protest against capitalism  and war and to affirm that they will not pay for the crisis.  Launched by the Social Movements’ Assembly, that gathered  during WSF 2009 in Belem. Three moments mark this week of  mobilisation:

*28th March: Mobilisations in protest of  the Group of 20 meeting (the G20), composed of representatives  of Central Banks and governments from the 20 countries that  represent two thirds of world commerce and population and more  than 90% of the gross world product. The World Bank and the  International Monetary Fund (IMF) are also members of the G20.  They will meet in London (United Kingdom) at the beginning of  April.

Demonstration in London. Pics from Indymedia UK, http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2009/03/425535.html
*30th March: Day of mobilisation against the  war and the crisis, and in solidarity with the Palestinian  people. This day coincides with Palestinian Land Day, which  remembers the 1976 Israeli massacre of Palestinians in  Galilee. It was chosen to strengthen the campaign for boycott,  disinvestments and sanctions (BDS) against Israel.

*4th April: Day that marks the 60th anniversary of  NATO – North American Trade Organisation, an alliance of  military cooperation between the USA and several European  countries. NATO will meet between the 3rd and 4th April in  Baden-Baden and Kehl, in Germany, and in Strasbourg, in  France.

In Europe, movements will concentrate their  actions in London and Strasbourg. There are many different  street activities (such as marches, flyering and bike rides)  planned in the following countries: Australia, the Basque  Country, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Catalonia, France, Germany,  Greece, Kenya, Holland (the Netherlands), India, Italy,  Norway, Pakistan, Quebec, the Spanish State, the United  Kingdom (Scotland and England) and the USA.

During  this week and particularly on the days mentioned above,  movements will affirm that in order to overcome the different  crises (food, finance, economy, climate, energy and population  migration), it is necessary to tackle with the root of the  problem and build a radical alternative to the capitalist  system and patriarchal domination.

In the face of the  false answers presented by companies, banks and governments to  deal with the crisis – such as dismissals and privatisation of  public services, natural and energy resources – which merely  aim at socialising losses, social movements will demand a  number of urgent measures such as:

– Nationalising  the banking sector without compensations and with full social  monitoring,
– Reducing  working time without wage cuts,
– Taking  measures to ensure food and energy sovereignty,
–  Stopping wars, withdrawing occupation troops and dismantling  foreign military bases,
–  Acknowledging peoples’ sovereignty and autonomy, and ensuring  their right to self-determination,
–  Guaranteeing rights to land, territory, work, education and  health for all,
–  Democratising access to means of communication and knowledge.

Click  on the following link to read the full Declaration of the  Social Movements’ Assembly, held during the WSF 2009 in  Belém:  <http://is.gd/piHg> http://www.fsm2009amazonia.org.br/programme/alliance-day/results-of-assemblies/declaration-of-the-assembly-of-social-movements/  (ou http://is.gd/piHg  )

For  further information about the BDS (Boycott, Divestment and  Sanctions) campaign, visit the website: http://www.bdsmovement.net/

Read below some of  the actions already scheduled:

AUSTRALIA
30th March: In  Melbourne, the Coalition of Palestinian Support Groups is  launching a campaign called “The Sack Connex, Boycott Israel”.

BELGIUM

28th March: In Brussels, an action drawing  attention to the financial crisis and the Palestinian question  will take place under the slogan “Palestine occupied, Dexia  implied”, as well as a symbolic action between 1.30pm and  16.30pm with the performing of the street theatre “Who will  pay for the crisis?” In addition, as part of the mobilisations  against the crisis and war, the largest Belgian trade union  (FGTB) has launched a campaign with the theme “Capitalism is  seriously bad for our health”. More information (in French):  http://www.contre-attaque.be/

BRAZIL

30th March: In São Paulo a national  demonstration organised by various different social movements  and Brazilian trade union networks will affirm that: “Workers  will not pay for the crisis!” The demonstration will begin in  the Avenue Paulista and will continue throughout the centre of  the city. The act will be accompanied by actions and  demonstrations in cities around the country. Look at the flyer  by clicking on the following link: http://www.cut.org.br/component/option,com_banners/task,click/bid,18  (ou http://tinyurl.com/c4pxdo)

Demonstrations  against the ratification of the Mercosur-Israel trade  agreement, and in support of the BDS (boycott, disinvestments  and sanctions) campaign against Israel will also take place in  the centre of the city, organised by the Solidarity with the  Palestinian People’s Front.

CANADA AND  QUEBEC

28th  March: In Montreal, peaceful demonstration in front of the  Guy-Favreau Complex at 1.30pm to say no to the G20, considered  an illegitimate forum in which to solve the crisis.

30th  March: In Toronto, “Resisting War from Gaza to Kandahar”, a  talk by George Galloway organised by the Toronto Stop the War  Coalition.

30th  March: In Montreal, symbolic olive tree planting in front of  the Israeli consulate, and an exhibition and sharing of  testimonies with regards to the Gaza situation.

CATALONIA, THE BASQUE COUNTRY AND  THE SPANISH STATE

28th March: Demonstrations  against the crisis and G20 and in solidarity with Palestinian  people will be held in Albacete, Almería, Barcelona, Bilbao,  Cádiz, Córdoba, Alicante, Elche, Madrid, Murcia, Pontevedra,  Tarragona and Valencia. Check the agenda at: http://www.nodo50.org/?page=convocatorias&id_article=189 <http://www.nodo50.org/?page=convocatorias&amp;id_article=189>

FRANCE

28th March: In Paris, demonstration organised  by a wide coalition of organisations, movements, trade unions  and political parties will leave from the Place de l’Opera at  2 pm. Activities are also scheduled in a further 30 cities.  Read the full list at: http://www.stop-g20.org/

On this same day, various activities in solidarity  with Palestine, such as demonstrations, film exhibitions and  conferences will take place in Paris, Lille, Le Mans, St  Brieuc and St Denis, organised by the France – Palestine  Solidarity Association (AFPS, in French).

On the  4th April, under the slogan « No to war! No to NATO ! »,  thousands of people from all over Europe will meet in  Strasbourg where different forms of action will take place to  demand an end to  militarisation and to NATO: workshops,  flyering to raise awareness, street blockades, meetings and  civil disobedience actions. A large demonstration is scheduled  to depart at 1pm. An alternative camp also will be organised.  Further information (only in French): http://sommet-otan-2009.blogspot.com

GERMANY

3rd April:  Demonstrations and blockades are planned in the city of  Baden-Baden, one of the entrance points for Heads of State and  military chiefs who will participate in the NATO ceremonies in  Strasbourg. More information: http://gipfelsoli.org/Home/Strasbourg_Baden-Baden_2009/NATO_2009_Links

GREECE

2nd April: In Crete, demonstration in support  of sports boycott and protest of the Greece – Israel soccer  match in Heraclion.

HOLLAND (NETHERLANDS)

28th March – 31st March: Cycling event calling  for the suspension of the EU – Israel Association Agreement.  Bicyclists will begin at the International Courts of Justice  at The Hague on the

28th and arrive at European  Parliament in Brussels on the 31st to deliver a petition to  European MPs. Organised by The Peace Cycle.

INDIA

30th March: In Delhi, Exhibition, poetry and  films commemorating Palestinian Land Day.

ITALY

28th March: Demonstration will take place at  2.30pm in Rome under the slogan “Loro la crisi, noi la  soluzione” (“Their crisis, our solutions”), organised by  COBAS. Sit-in at various shopping centres in Milan, Turin,  Pisa, Bologna, Rome, and Naples, organized by Forum Palestine  will also be held.

4th April: large demonstration  organised by CGIL and other organisations and networks through  the streets of Rome in direction of the Circo Massimo.

KENYA

28th March: the World March of Women will  participate in actions in support of women artists, and to  affirm that women will not pay for the crisis. They will be  accompanied by a feminist drumming group and will base their  actions around the themes of women’s work, the common good,  food security, domestic violence and peace.

NORWAY

30th March: in  Kristiansand and Oslo debates and workshops around the  Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaign as a tool to  pressure Israel. In selected neighbourhoods of Oslo, the  Socialist Youth will engage in a face to face boycott action,  going door to door and informing inhabitants about the BDS  campaign, which products to boycott, and how they can get  involved. Finally, the Palestine Committee and others will  hold a joint BDS demonstration at the Israeli embassy in Oslo.

PAKISTAN

In Karachi, a conference on the Palestinian  situation will be held on 28th March. On 2nd April,  demonstrations against the G20 will take place in the city  streets.

UNITED KINGDOM

28th  March to 4th April: London will receive participants from all  over Europe for the demonstrations against the capitalistic  system and the crisis, on the 28th March, and against the war  and the NATO, on the 2nd April. Surprise actions, meetings and  debates will take place during the week, as well as a camp in  the city centre. Further information:  www.putpeoplefirst.org.uk

In Glasgow and Edinburgh, in  Scotland, boycotts of supermarkets will take place on the 29th  March in solidarity with Palestine.

On 30th March,  mass calls to Waitrose and Tesco supermarkets’ customer  services to complain about the sale of Israeli products across  the UK.

UNITED STATES

29th  March: Film projections, discussion around BDS actions with  speakers recently returned from Gaza and on links between  Mexico and Palestine walls, will be held in Santa Cruz, and on  the
30th March in San Diego and Los Angeles, California. In  New York, the Campaign for the Boycott of Israel will launch a  broad boycott campaign against the Motorola Company on the  30th.

… And much more around the  World.

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