14N European Strike and Action Day

On 14 November 2012, there were general strikes, strikes, actions and demonstrations in many European countries, the biggest strike ever.
There was a general strike in Portugal and Spain, Malta and Cyprus, there were strikes in Greece and Italy, and actions and demonstrations in Belgium, Germany, and other countries.

14n

Reports:

http://europeanstrike.org

http://www.huelga14n.org

http://roarmag.org/2012/11/14-n-european-strike-austerity-protest-clashes/

http://actualutte.com/live-14n-european-strike/

New York Solidarity Action: http://www.occupywallst.org/article/general-strike-historic-transeurope-solidarity-ass/

ETUC Brussels:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/etuc-ces/sets/72157631999227748/

Germany

In Germany, the German Confederation of Trade Unions (DGB) called for actions and demonstrations in solidarity with #14N in Europe, following the ETUC (European Trade Union Confederation) call.
There were rallies and demonstrations in Berlin, Hamburg, Bremen, Stuttgart, Duesseldorf, Frankfurt/Main, Cologne, Wuppertal and other cities.

Reports in German / Berichte auf deutsch

http://www.labournet.de/internationales/europa/n14aktuell.html

http://www.labournet.de/internationales/europa/N14.html
http://www.labournet.de/internationales/europa/n14bilanz1.html
http://www.labournet.de/diskussion/arbeit/aktionen/2009/finanzkrise_gew.html
http://www.labournet.de/internationales/europa/index.html
http://www.labournet.de/diskussion/arbeit/aktionen/2009/finanzkrise.html

EGB-Aufruf: http://tlaxcala-int.org/article.asp?reference=8404

Bericht DGB:
14.11.2012
Europäischer Aktionstag: Europaweit Tausende auf den Straßen
Proteste in Spanien, Portugal, Belgien, Italien gegen die soziale Spaltung Europas. Auch in Deutschland gingen die Menschen auf die Straßen. Aufgerufen hatte der Europäische Gewerkschaftsbund EGB, um ein Zeichen zu setzen für Arbeit und Solidarität – gegen das Spardiktat der Europäischen Union.
Berlin: http://www.dgb.de/themen/++co++0b370a76-2e67-11e2-9b76-00188b4dc422

IL und Ums Ganze: Solierklaerung: http://umsganze.org/ein-guter-abschluss-fuer-2012-ein-grund-zur-freude-in-duesterer-zeit/

Duesseldorf: http://14nduesseldorf.blogsport.de
Wuppertal: http://soli-komitee-wuppertal.mobi/2012/11/14n_wuppertal/

Blockupy will continue 2013

A very short report

On October 20th and 21st 2012, the Blockupy alliance met in Frankfurt (Main) again and more than 500 people came to the debates. A tent was set up on a large square in the centre of the city.

Frankfurt, 21.10.12

On Saturday, there were several panel discussions on the catastrophic effects of the austerity measures in Europe.

On Sunday, activists discussed future plans of the movement and agreed to continue in 2013 (with action days probably at the end of May / beginning of June, and including actions of civil disobedience) and beyond (the European Central Bank is planning to celebrate the opening of its new building in 2014 in Frankfurt).

Blockupy 2013 will start by joining the European action day on November 14th with decentralised actions in solidarity with strikes in Southern Europe (Portugal, Spain, and elsewhere). In March 2013, activists from Germany will either join the protests in Brussels or organise solidarity actions. Blockupy activists will travel to Agora 99 in Madrid, 2 – 4 November 2012 and to Firenze 10 plus 10 from 8 – 11 November in Florence to share proposals and co-ordinate protests with groups and movements from other countries.

In the panel discussions, activists from Greece, Spain, Portugal, and Italy described the situation in Southern Europe and reported on the recent protests. The events on Saturday were organised because there was a ban on all public tents and protests in May 2012 issued by the city of Frankfurt.

press declaration in German:
http://blockupy-frankfurt.org/de/presse/pm21102012
images: http://www.elo-forum.net/aktionen2/2012102165631.html

http://blockupy-frankfurt.org

May 2012 in Frankfurt:
https://crisisandchange.wordpress.com/2012/05/22/blockupy-frankfurt-successful/

https://twitter.com/Blockupy
http://17to19m.blogsport.eu

Madrid: http://99agora.net
Florence: http://firenze1010.eu

counter-events to the Euro Finance Week 19 – 23 November 2012 in Frankfurt (in German):
http://notroika.linksnavigator.de/artikel/eurofinanceweek-19-bis-23-november-2012-frankfurt

Some press reports in German:

Blockupy-Sonderseite FR: http://www.fr-online.de/blockupy-frankfurt/15402798,15402798.html
Im Herzen der Bestie: http://www.fr-online.de/blockupy-frankfurt/blockupy-im-herzen-der-bestie,15402798,20674958.html

Blockupy plant neue Proteste: http://www.hr-online.de/website/rubriken/nachrichten/indexhessen34938.jsp?rubrik=36082&key=hessen_vtx_meldung_46422375

18.10.12: http://www.fr-online.de/blockupy-frankfurt/blockupy-frankfurt-runde-zwei-fuer-blockupy,15402798,20649282.html

22.10.12: http://www.neues-deutschland.de/artikel/801990.widerstaendiges-steigern.html

19.10.12: http://www.neues-deutschland.de/artikel/801883.zelt-zentrum-frankfurt.html
http://www.neues-deutschland.de/artikel/801989.solidaritaet-beim-generalstreik.html

22.10.12: http://www.jungewelt.de/2012/10-22/048.php

http://notroika.linksnavigator.de/artikel/blockupy-kommt-wieder-aktionstage-im-fruehjahr-2013-frankfurt-demonstration-und-aktionen-des

Infos zum Bussgeldverfahren: http://de.indymedia.org/2012/10/336400.shtml

Video: Panel Occupy Democracy 20.10.12: http://www.european-resistance.org/de/node/465

Image source: http://www.elo-forum.net

Occupying Grannies in Berlin

Retirees aged 67 to 96 have occupied their community centre in Pankow, North-East Berlin. They have moved into their community centre with mattresses and camp-beds when the authorities announced that their social club would no longer be financed by the local municipality of Pankow due to budget cuts.

The community centre exists since 1998 and offers a variety of leisure activities for about 300 retirees, including painting courses, English language courses, chess and card games. It was to be closed by the end of June 2012 so the elderly decided to occupy the building and stay until the authorities find a financing solution. The angry retirees are determined: “We will stay until the bulldozers come”. The community centre is located in a neighbourhood near the Chinese embassy, and various luxurious town houses have recently been built.

This unusual squat has received a huge amount of media attention, even abroad, and the Grannies and Granddads of Berlin have been compared to Spain’s old-age pensioners who are fighting austerity, the Iaioflautas.

On August 7th, as they were celebrating their 40th day of occupation, they even received a visit from Spanish activists from the 15M movement in Berlin. They were given a banner: “Nos quedamos todos” (We will all stay).

Under pressure, the local authorities are now looking for financing options like charity organisations or social institutions to secure the future of the community centre.

Continue reading

Protests in Canada

In Canada, students are and have been protesting against against austerity measures and higher tuition fees. In response to the spreading protests, the conservative Charest government passed a new “emergency” law: Bill 78.

Nearly 60% of Canadian students graduate with debt, on average at $27,000 for an undergraduate degree. Total student debt now stands at about $20 billion in Canada ($15 billion from Federal Government loans programs, and the rest from provincial and commercial bank loans).

A random collection of reports:

http://www.counterpunch.org/2012/05/23/10-things-you-should-know-about-the-quebec-student-movement/
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/british-columbia/gary_mason/the-crushing-weight-of-student-debt/article2088760/

Wednesday, May 23, 2012 by Common Dreams:
“The single biggest act of civil disobedience in Canadian history.”
Marchers defy Bill 78; Neighborhoods fill with sound of banging pots and pans: http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2012/05/23-5

http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/news/quebec-student-protests

CLASSE: http://www.stopthehike.ca

Cindy Milstein: Day 55: http://cbmilstein.wordpress.com/2012/06/17/a-little-bit-of-direct-democracy-for-now-montreal-day-55/

http://occupywallst.org/article/night-falls-power-rises-montreal/
http://occupywallst.org/article/global-casseroles-night-solidarite-quebec-over-50-/
http://occupywallst.org/article/again-pots-louder-time-8pm-est/
http://occupywallst.org/article/students-undocumented-youth-lead-global-movement-e/

Genova is not over

Ten, No one and three hundred thousand…

genoa2001

Genoa, July 21st, 2001

The Public Order management during the days of the G8 in Genoa back in July 2001 represents an open wound in the recent history of the Italian republic. Ten years after the murder of Carlo Giuliani, the “Mexican butchery” occurred in the Diaz school, the tortures in the Bolzaneto barracks, the violence and beatings in the streets of Genoa, the responsible have not been identified and moreover who ran the public order in Genoa led a distinguished career as Gianni De Gennaro, newly appointed Secretary of the Presidency of the Italian Council of Ministers.
While the State absolves itself from what Amnesty International has called “the biggest suspension of democratic rights in a Western country since the Second World War”, on the 13th of July 2012 ten persons are running the risk of becoming the scapegoats of this situation and see their sentence confirmed, by the Supreme Court, to a total of one hundred years in prison overall, in the name of a crime, “destruction and looting”, which is one of the many juridical leftovers of the Fascist penal code, called Code Rocco.
A crime designed with a clear and political intention to prosecute those who opposed the fascist regime. Today it is mainly used by assuming a psychological participation even when there is no real association between the persons charged. This means that the decision whether to apply the crime or not is only in the hands of the investigators and judges.
It’s unacceptable that, eighty years later, this aberration is still in our juridical system and it’s used to charge and punish political public events that have such a great importance, involving hundreds of thousands of people, as did the protests against the G8 in Genoa in 2001.

We cannot allow that after ten years the story of Genova ends in this way.

We appeal to the world of culture, entertainment, individuals, civil society to make their voice heard by signing this call seeking the annulment of the conviction for devastation and looting for all the defendants involved.

For a battle that is about freedom for everybody.

10×100: sign the call: http://www.10×100.it/?page_id=55

Ireland vote no for us

Update: Unfortunately, the scare campaign had an effect… 60 percent voted yes, 40 percent voted no…

In many different European cities, in Madrid, The Hague, Brussels and Copenhagen, solidarity actions were organised in front of Irish embassies and consulates asking the Irish to vote No against the austerity treaty. The Transnational Institute in Amsterdam (TNI) isued a statement that was handed to the ambassador in The Hague:

Ireland, vote NO for us on 31 May!

There is no popular support for EU-driven austerity. It’s up to the Irish people to raise their voice and say NO to permanent austerity.
Europe’s anti-crisis policies are on the wrong track. The Austerity Treaty – or the so called Fiscal Compact – is intended to impose a permanent regime of austerity in all 25 signatory countries. If the Treaty would enter into force, it would form a major obstacle to redistributive, progressive and socially just economic policies in the future. The economic dogma of ever-tighter budgetary rules is both absurd and highly unjust.
There are clear signs that the Austerity Treaty and related economic policies will not bring recovery or create employment, but could lead to an even deeper economic crisis. The Treaty and the economic policy it represents will lead to more inequality, more poverty and disenfranchisement throughout Europe and globally.
The Austerity Treaty is tailored to the needs of big corporations, including financial corporations, and neglects the needs of the majority. It represents the latest attempt to turn economic policy into a technocratic endeavour outside of democratic control, with unelected bureaucrats in a powerful, decision making role.
There is only one valid response to this Treaty: it must be stopped!
People across the EU are now looking at Ireland. Ireland stands as the only country amongst the 25 signatories that will subject the Treaty to a referendum. On 31 May, Irish citizens will have the chance to say NO to permanent austerity by rejecting the Treaty.
Movements like Occupy and the Indignadosas well as recent election results in France, Greece and Germany show that there is no popular support for EU-driven austerity. Now it’s up to the Irish people to raise their voice and say NO to permanent austerity.
Together with many other Europeans outside Ireland, who have all been deprived of a voice on this Treaty, we are putting our hope in the Irish people: do not to give in to threats and intimidation from your government, the EU institutions or others and vote NO for all of us.
Vote NO to the Austerity Treaty, YES to a Europe of the people!

http://www.tni.org/NO
http://www.tni.org/article/ireland-vote-no-us-31-may

http://campaignagainsttheausteritytreaty.wordpress.com

Vote No to the Fiscal Compact Treaty, Referendum in Ireland, May 31 2012

UNITE MANDATE and the CPSU Call for No in the Austerity Treaty Referendum
Three major Irish trade unions with combined membership of more than 100,000 have issued a strong call to vote no in Thursday’s referendum on what they are calling the austerity treaty.
May 28, 2012
http://campaignagainsttheausteritytreaty.wordpress.com/2012/05/28/unite-manadate-and-the-cpsu-call-for-no-in-the-austerity-treaty-referendum/

Why the Treaty Won’t Work
Author: Michael Burke of Socialist Economic Bulletin
Published: May 28th, 2012
http://www.irishleftreview.org/2012/05/28/treaty-work/

What Happens if Ireland Votes No?
Jenny O’Connor
May 29th, 2012
Only a few months ago it appeared that a No vote in the Irish referendum would isolate her in Europe. This is no longer the case and now a No vote would merely add an Irish voice to the anti-austerity movement that is gaining force across Europe at the local, national, and now even regional level.
http://www.irishleftreview.org/2012/05/29/ireland-votes/

Internationalism Working Group of IG Metall (German metalworkers’ union) supports No to austerity treaty in Ireland: http://campaignagainsttheausteritytreaty.wordpress.com/2012/05/28/geerman-trade-union-ig-metall-solidarity-declaration-vote-no-to-austerity-treaty-on-may-31/