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Breadth and Depth of Opposition Displayed on October 6

08.10.2002 14:39

20,000 Converge in Central Park, NYC

On October 6, the first anniversary of the bombing of Afghanistan, Not In Our Name organized nationwide protests against the "war on the world," political detentions and civil liberties restrictions. Following five days of building momentum, the actions across the U.S. marked the growing breadth and depth of opposition to war in Iraq.

Demonstrations were seen in communities large and small, ranging from tens of thousands of persons in Central Park, NYC, to one hundred persons rallying in Sandpoint, Idaho. One count has found that more than 85,000 persons demonstrated in the United States last weekend.

[ Read the entire feature. ]

Contribute to a photo gallery from the week of protest, and consult the October 6 feature link collection for more.

More information is available in past global Indymedia coverage about Iraq [ Oct 8 | Oct 7 | Oct 6 | Oct 5a | Oct 5b | Oct 3 | Sep 28 | Sep 27 | Sep 26 | Sep 17 | Sep 14 | Aug 21 | Aug 16 | Jul 30 ].

Five Days in October Spark Movement

08.10.2002 09:01

More than ten thousand demonstrate in Portland, Oregon The first five days of October saw an eruption of organizing, demonstrations, and excitement across the U.S. for stopping a possible war with Iraq. More than 30,000 persons gathered at various events in the five days to display their opposition to such a war. These events ranged from teach-ins to mass demonstrations, or from anti-corporate rallies to sit-ins, displaying a focus upon the economic as well as diplomatic issues facing the country.

Meanwhile, a recent report from Democracy Now! shows that elected officials in Washington D.C. are ignoring their constituents pleas for peace.

[ Read the entire feature. ]

More information is available in past global Indymedia coverage about Iraq [ Oct 8 | Oct 7 | Oct 6 | Oct 5a | Oct 5b | Oct 3 | Sep 28 | Sep 27 | Sep 26 | Sep 17 | Sep 14 | Aug 21 | Aug 16 | Jul 30 ].

A Closer Look at the London Peace Demo

08.10.2002 07:49

500,000 rally in London on September 28 The peace movement continues to build in the U.K., a week after some half million persons converged in London to oppose the push for war with Iraq on Saturday, September 28. More demonstrations and direct actions across the U.K. are planned for October 31.

[ Read the entire feature. ]

More information on the movement in the U.K. against war in Iraq is available past global Indymedia features [ Sep 28 | Sep 27 | Sep 26 ].

Lula to Face Serra in Second Round of Voting

07.10.2002 16:25

Lula and Serra Luiz Inacio "Lula" da Silva, the leftist Worker's Party (PT) candidate will face Jose Serra, the centrist Brazilian Social Democratic Party candidate for a second round scheduled for October 27.

With 99 percent of the votes counted, Lula obtained 46 percent of the valid votes while Jose Serra took 23.2 percent. According to the Brazilian law, Lula would need 50 percent plus 1 to have avoided a second round runoff.

[ Read the entire feature. ]

Website to Provide Grassroots Media from Iraq

07.10.2002 15:35

As the Bush administration threatens a massive attack on Iraq, many within the corporate media have chosen to become cheerleaders for the war cause. The words "we" and "us" and "our forces" are used so frequently by major corporate media personalities that it has become difficult to figure out if it is the Bush Administration or the corporate media that are gearing up to bomb Iraq.

With Washington on the verge of seeking to destroy an already devastated country, a group of independent journalists and activists - spearheaded by ,Voices in the Wilderness and the internationally acclaimed Iraq Peace Team - are breaking ranks with the war chorus. Coordinated by independent journalist Jeremy Scahill on the ground in Baghdad, IraqJournal provides a forum for the distribution of independent information and views from Iraq.

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More information about Iraq is available in previous global Indymedia features [ Sep 28 | Sep 27 | Sep 26 | Sep 17 | Sep 14 | Aug 21 | Aug 16 | Jul 30 ].

Breaking the Media Blackout

07.10.2002 03:08

Courtesy KWRU.org This weekend, many IMCs are featuring local stories on the struggle to end poverty. In solidarity with a conference titled "Break the Media Blackout: A Conference on Media Democracy and The Struggle to End Poverty," just concluding in Philadelphia, IMCs in Los Angeles, Seattle, Calgary, and New York are taking the initiative to move the struggle against poverty forward and break the blackout corporate media has imposed on poor people.

You can help with this effort by posting links that contribute information and stories about local struggles here.

Government Complicity Fuels New Attacks on Indigenous Villagers

06.10.2002 19:47

Photo Courtesy of Chiapas Indymedia Attacks on villagers in Chiapas continue to intensify, in the wake of a string of broken promises (es) from the Mexican government for land reform and a continuing betrayal of efforts to secure human rights for indigenous peoples.

What are the forces behind the escalating violence? Multinational companies eyeing the land for logging, oil or pharmaceutical research; government bodies seeking to establish military bases or land reserves; and armed paramilitary groups looking to acquire land and intimidate autonomous communities for their own personal and political aims. Kari Lydersen of Chicago Indymedia reports from the ground in Chiapas.

More information is available in past global Indymedia coverage [ Aug 30 | Jul 29 | Jul 23 | Jul 15 ].

Fighting for Peace

06.10.2002 14:35

'Drummer for Peace' at October 5 anti-war rally in Portland, Oregon Around the United States this weekend, people are trying to stop the war before it starts in a national campaign organized by 'Not in Our Name.' Rallies in Austin, Los Angeles, Portland, Chicago, and elsewhere, as well as a recent report on the overwhelming number of people calling their representatives in opposition to war with Iraq, are demonstrating the breadth of popular opposition. Meanwhile in Washington D.C., the planning for war continues.

Please help us collect reports from all of these actions by posting them here.

Bombspotting at the Kleine Brogel Airbase

05.10.2002 22:02

marching with bomspotting banner As the United States is forcing new military inspections on Iraq, over 2000 Belgian peace activists landed at the military base at Kleine Brogel today, in order to perform a "civil inspection". They trespassed on and occupied the base, which is used to store illegal U.S. nuclear weapons. On the Kleine Brogel military base there is an illegal stock of U.S. nuclear warheads. In spite ofthe massive military and police presence, lots of activists succeeded in getting on the base. According to the police, 1034 people where arrested on and around the base. In spite of the brutal way in which the police and military acted, there is a very good feeling among the activists.

More information is available in a report, a timeline (nl/fr) of the events, and in an overview (nl/fr) of the protests.

Protestors to Converge on Pine Gap

05.10.2002 21:53

Pine Gap Base Pine Gap is a U.S. military intelligence and communications base located in the middle of Australia near Alice Springs in the Northern Territory. It was established in the 1960s, and has played a major role in many U.S. military operations, including the 1991 Gulf War and the current "war on terror." It is planned to be an integral part of the proposed U.S. National Missle Defense (NMD), or 'Star Wars' system, which is explicitly intended to enable the U.S. to dominate and control space. Its presence in Australia makes the nation complicit in U.S. military strikes, and is a likely nuclear target.

[ Read the entire feature. ]

Lula May Win Race in First Round

04.10.2002 17:54

Banner for Lula in Brazil Only two days away from Election Day, Luis Inacio da Silva - known popularly as "Lula" - from the Workers Party (PT), holds a commanding lead in public opinion polls for the Brazilian presidential race. The question now is, if elected, how he would govern the country.

On Sunday, October 6, 115 million Brazilians are estimated to cast their vote for president, from a total population of 175 million. These are the fourth presidential elections in Brazil since the end of the military dictatorship in 1979 and subsequent granting of amnesty to political prisoners.

[ Read the entire feature. ]

Peaceful Squatters Evicted Forcefully

04.10.2002 15:08

The Woodwards Squat in Vancouver Early in the morning of Saturday, September 21, police moved in on the occupiers of the Woodwards Building in downtown Vancouver and arrested 58 people, including a Vancouver Indymedia reporter, on charges of civil contempt for breaching a British Columbian supreme court injunction against occupying the building. Contrary to insinuations by police on mainstream media, the occupiers were not armed or aggressive. The squatters who chose to stay when the riot police approached did not resist arrest, but sat peacefully in a circle as they were taken away forcefully one by one. Various tools that were being used for repairs that were found in the building (e.g. a nail gun, hammers) were inaccurately described by the police as weapons.

[ Read the entire feature. ]

Day Three: Thousands March Against War in Iraq

04.10.2002 01:48

Beating the Drums Against Oil War Following a trend of anti-war protests across the globe, between five and ten thousand persons protested in Washington D.C. on Sunday, September 29 against what is the seemingly imminent war against Iraq. Demonstrators first gathered in Dupont Circle to listen to speakers and music, following which thousands enthusiastically marched down Embassy Row and finished in front of the British Embassy and Vice President Dick Cheney's mansion at the Naval Observatory. Sponsors included the National Network to End the War Against Iraq, Washington Peace Center, Peace Action, Global Exchange, Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, Veterans for Peace, DAWN, and Education for Peace in Iraq.

Read the entire article about the march and growing movement against war in Iraq, a personal account of the peace demonstration, and a minute-by-minute report of the day's events [ 12:30 pm - 7:25 pm ].

[ Read the entire feature. ]

More information is available in past global Indymedia coverge [ Sep 30 | Sep 29 | Sep 28a | Sep 28b | Sep 27 | Sep 25 | Sep 23 | Sep 22 ].

Athens IMC Targetted by Greek Media

03.10.2002 15:45

Athens IMC logo On July 17, the Athens IMC website featured a report on "17 of November" (17N), a 27 year old organization dating from the Papadapoulos dictatorship. Arrests of alleged 17N members earlier in the summer was greeted by the Greek and international mass media as a "huge success" of the Greek police and government, while the U.S. linked the actions to the "war on terrorism" as the group is listed on U.S. and Greek terrorist watch lists. Following the first arrests, state and corporate media in Greece created a climate of general fear and hysteria, as most of the 17N members remained at large. 'Journalists' spread unfounded rumors, persons were interrogated on television, and Greek society entered a state of general hysteria.

[Read the entire feature.]

Further coverage is available from the Italy IMC (it), Portugal IMC (pt), and Brasil IMC (pt).

'Indymedia on Air' this Week

02.10.2002 22:39

Indymedia on Air is a compilation show of IMC and allied audio from around the world, and is uploaded weekly to the global Indymedia newswire. The show is produced from the Los Angeles IMC. For the week of September 30, 2002:

Part One of the Show (29:01 minutes):
- Scott Harris of Madhatters IMC/Between the Lines reports from the IMF/WB actions
- IMC Austria on the ongoing war in Chechnya
- Vancouver and Toronto kick the homeless to the curb from Vancouver IMC and Ontario IMC

Part Two of the Show (30:54 minutes):
- Vandana Shiva on corporate water grabs in India and the global south from the Seattle IMC
- Ruthie Gilmore on the cultural roots of the US war on drugs from the Los Angeles IMC
- John Feelgood of Netherlands IndyMedia with the Europe Newsflash
- Cornel West remixed by Pod of Pan Optic Radio (SF)

Critical Mass Turns Ten

02.10.2002 05:23

Critical Mass in San Francisco Ten years ago this past Friday, the first organized ride through the streets of San Francisco which would become known as Critical Mass occurred. Ten years later several thousand cyclists rode through the streets of San Francisco in a show of unity aganist a fossil fuel based economy and a consumer agenda bent on ecological self-destruction.

San Francisco was not alone in manifestations of cycle power over capitalist profit. Rides also occurred in Portland, the Twin Cities, Madison, and over 300 other cities accross the world such as in Italy. In New York City, the Brooklyn Bridge was taken over in July. Bicycling, while a simple past time enjoyed by many, has become a new expression of global resistance to corporate globalization and capitalism.

Already Tense, A Murder Heightens Situation

01.10.2002 14:28

MOVE women guard the family home On the morning of September 27, former MOVE member John Gilbride was found dead in Maple Shade, NJ, shot several times while in his car with his seatbelt on. Gilbride had been involved in an extended custody battle with his ex-wife Alberta Africa over their 6-year-old son, Zachary.

The situation has continued to escalate since September 10, when the Camden County Court denied MOVE's petition for a restraining order on Gilbride and upheld Pennsylvania Judge Shelley Robbins New's decision to give Gilbride partial custody of his son. MOVE has alleged that Gilbride was an unfit father who walked out on his wife and son, never paid child support, and repeatedly demonstrated violent and erratic behavior. When New's decision was released, MOVE said they would not give up the child, leading many to fear another confrontation between MOVE and the Philadelphia Police Department was brewing.

In a recent post, journalist Hans Bennet explains why this marks a dangerous escalation in the already charged relationship between MOVE and the legal system, and could lead to another standoff, similar to 1978 and 1985 -- when police dropped a bomb on the organization's house and let the fire burn it to the ground, along with over 60 neighboring houses.

The MOVE organization is an intentional community that raises their children communally and according to the religious teachings of their founder, John Africa, and has been vocal for decades around issues of police abuse and criminal injustice in the city of Philadelphia. The Philadelphia Police Department is considered by human rights organizations to be one of the most abusive in the US. The world renown case of Mumia Abu Jamal and the mass violation of constitutional rights during the 2000 Republican National Convention are just two examples.

More information is available in a background article, a photo essay, and an archive of MOVE statements. [ Add to this feature. ]

Criminalization of Dissent in U.S. Capitol

30.09.2002 04:33

U.S. soldier surveilling demonstrators The growing trend of diminishing civil liberties reared its head in Washington D.C. this past weekend. The protests against the World Bank and IMF on Saturday, September 28 were statuatorially permitted and there were few arrests in contrast to Friday's actions. However, a number of protesters remain in jail, and jail solidarity actions are continuing. Meanwhile, most of those arrested on Friday were released [ 1 ] by late Saturday. Four persons arrested on Saturday were detained for allegedly possessing a homemade explosive.

As was the case Friday, the police presence remained overwhelming, utilizing members of several local and regional forces, many of which were engaged as security for commercial property or for surveillance. In a probable violation of the Posse Comitatus Act, soldiers from the U.S. military were observed surveilling protestors on Friday [ 1 ] and Saturday [ 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 ] exercising their First Amendment rights. When asked about their actions, the military stated they were "sightseeing."

Protestors were disturbed by the overt lack of respect showed towards civil liberties by authorities. Concerns included the fact that detained persons were denied water and medical assistance after arrest, numerous individuals were injured by police brutality [ 1 | 2 | cartoon ], and have urged supporters to comment to the D.C. police department.

Misrepresentation and disparagement of the protests continued in the corporate media, though varying analyses contend such coverage is both improving and deteriorating. Regardless of media coverage, messages of solidarity [ poem ] have arrived from places ranging from Argentina to Salamanca, Spain. Debate continues about the nature of democracy and the effectiveness of the protests, from the role of anarchism in the global justice movement to the public image of activists.

Further coverage is available on the Thursday, September 26 teach-in on corporate globalization [ 1 | 2 ], and on Friday, September 27, the snake march [ 1 | 2 | 3 ] where police attacked media and observers and arrested scores [ 1 | 2 ], the aborted protest at a Gap outlet in Georgetown [ 1 | 2 ], the mass arrests in Pershing Square [ 1 | 2 | 1 | 1 | 2 ] near Freedom Plaza, and the Anti-Capitalist Convergence press conference [ 1 ]. Meanwhile, in a Friday interview with IMC, Senator J. Inhofe (R-OK) described the protestors as having emotional problems.

Further coverage is available from La Haine (es), and past global Indymedia coverage [ Sep 29 | Sep 28a | Sep 28b | Sep 27 | Sep 25 | Sep 23 | Sep 22 ].

Day Two: Thousands Rally for Global Justice

29.09.2002 16:24

MGJ Rally at the Washington Monument Five to ten thousand persons converged in Washington D.C. [ 1 | 2 | 3 ], on September 28 to protest the annual meetings of the World Bank and the IMF. Demonstrators decried the detrimental effects of neoliberal economic policies and called for global justice and democracy.

Saturday's actions began with a rally [ 1 | 2 | 3 ] on the lawn surrounding the Washington Monument. At noon, some 400 people marched from the U.S. Treasury to the monument, calling for the cancellation of international debt, an end to destructive World Bank dam projects, and increased funding for AIDS prevention and care [ 1 | 2 ]. The rally, coordinated by Mobilization for Global Justice, featured many speakers and performers. Activists speaking at the weekend's events included Ralph Nader [ 1 | 2 ], Maude Barlow [ 1 ], Oscar Olivera, [ 1 ], Medea Benjamin [ 1 ], Carola Kinasha [ 1 ], and musician Michelle Shocked [ 1 ].

Following the rally, demonstrators marched through the city to Farragut Square near the site of the IMF and World Bank. The previous evening police extended an exclusion zone around the financial institutions, keeping protesters blocks away from meeting delegates. After a rally at Farragut Square [ 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 ], the protesters continued on to Murrow Park and up to nearby police barricades fronting the IMF and World Bank buildings [ 1 ]. The demonstrators - many wearing biohazard suits - stated their goal of "quarantining" [ 1 ] delegates in the meetings.

As the day ended [ 1 ], protesters were confined by police at several intersections. Eleven protesters were arrested as they attempted to leave the area controlled by police. At 7:30 pm, a group of forty activists bound together with duct tape lay in the streets near a barricade on Pennsylvania Street in an attempt to block delegates, most of whom were transported out in chartered buses under police escort.

A minute-by-minute report of the day's events is available here: [ 9:00 am - 12:36 pm | 12:40 pm - 6:00 pm | 6:03 pm - 10:10 pm ].

More information is available from a three-part interview series [ Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 ], an audio series about the disempowering impact of corporate globalization in the U.S. [ 1 | 2 ], and 'Sounds from the Streets' [ 1 | 2 ].

Further coverage is available from La Haine (es), IMC features from Belgium (fr/nl), Uruguay (es), San Francisco, Chicago, Houston, and past global Indymedia coverage [ Sep 28a | Sep 28b | Sep 27 | Sep 25 | Sep 23 | Sep 22 ].

Half Million Say No to Blair and War

29.09.2002 01:31

&quot;Blair Don't Be a Puppet to a Muppet&quot; In the largest peace demonstrations in the U.K. since the Vietnam era, up to a half million persons demonstrated [ 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 ] in the streets of London on Saturday, September 28 against war in Iraq. This powerful output of opposition to U.S. and U.K. support for war focused particularaly on PM Tony Blair's singular support for a war of aggression.

The march began [ 1 ] at the Embankment around noon, and wound through central London, passing Parliament [ 1 ], Downing St. [ 1 | 1 ], and Trafalgar Square [ 1 ] before ending in Hyde Park. Marchers were already arriving in the park before most persons had started. A second march coming from the Strand merged with the main group at Trafalgar Sq. Police accompanying the demonstrators behaved peacefully with several exceptions [ 1 ], despite underestimating turnout beforehand. Side streets were reported to be full of protestors as well, diverted from the main body, with various media reporting [ 1 ] widely disparate numbers, the lowest and least coverage coming from U.S. outlets.

Six hours later, the majority of demonstrators had arrived in Hyde Park, at which point there was a rally against war and in support of a free Palestine [ 1 ]. The march was marked by banners, puppets, music [ 1 ], noise brigades, and burned effigies of Bush, Blair, and Italian PM Silvio Berlusconi. Opinions differ as to the potential effects of the march.

Similar protests were held throughout the world on Saturday. Over one hundred thousand demonstrated in Rome, while more actions were held in Cairo, Berlin (de), Dublin, Sydney and across New Zealand [ 1 | 2 ]. Even as political opposition to an Iraq war builds in the U.S., thousands gathered in San Francisco [ 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 ], and hundreds rallied in St. Louis for peace.

More information is available from this report (it) [ audio ], and past global Indymedia features [ Sep 27 | Sep 26 | Sep 17 | Sep 14 | Aug 21 | Aug 16 | Jul 30 ].

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