Dear List Members (my apologies for any multiple postings),
I realize this is not directly about downwinder or toxics stuff, but it goes directly to the heart of all person's existence and the freedoms that most of us in the U.S. appear to currently enjoy. This has been forwarded from the American Librarians Association! It is very real. Please read and forward this to as many people as possible. We all need to know what our "pretender" president dubya is condoning and being a part of. Ever hear any expression of dismay over the goings on while he was at the G8 conference? Not to my knowledge, and this is nothing compared to what we are all going to experience in a very near future.
Think of the WTO protests, and the military "urban warfare" exercises in several locations on US soil in the past year. No one wants to be thought of as a crank or wierdo, but here it is...the New World Order in action. Hey, our Congress is sitting there playing tiddly winks and creating nonsense. Our freedoms are being impinged upon one by one. Ever ask yourself why the War Powers act was never repealed? Martial law could be declared at ANY time in our country as well. Here in Denver, Colorado, we have seen up to 8 digital cameras being mounted at high traffic intersections for digitized facial profiling of drivers, FYI. Supposedly, this is for the purpose of identifying a database and location of individuals that might have outstanding warrants or any other litany of "offenses" that can be compared to a digitally enhanced database of who-knows-what. Kinda makes you want to drape your license and wear a paper bag, huh? Something to think about.
read most important the message below: Forwarded by,
For those of you reading this on the ALAOIF or ALA Member-Forum listserv (hopefully some of you will and will go the links), please try to understand that this IS a 'library issue": if we, as librarians , don't see the murder and violence in Genoa -- organized by a US ally, Italy, and its new neo-fascist PM Berlusconi, and carried out in full view of our own President, without expression of disapproval (on the contrary!) -- as the most egregious attack on one of OUR librarians' core values in the US,'intellectual freedom' (which has a larger scope than the right to unfiltered internet access or of having "Harry Potter in your childrens' section),, then we are little more than blind hypocites when we talk of freedom of any kind.
ALA Councilor at large
[for ID purposes only]
The following is a declaration from protesters that escaped from Genoa and are staying with Ya Basta in Milano.
7' is the name of Italian tv station that showed footage of 'black bloc'
on Police motor-bikes inside the restricted 'red zone' and getting into
police vans at will. This footage was shown 1 hour before the bloody attack
on the GSF & IMC. It was this footage the cops were after.
Our thoughts are with the deceased and their families. Carlo Giuliani was murdered during the protest against the G8 summit in Genova. Hundreds are still unaccounted for. The outrage the police caused is epitomized by the two shots they fired into Carlo Giuliani's head and the intense military policing that proceeded this incident.Even before the G8 summit, the wealthiest nations of the world who are responsible for global exploitation, povertry, and war, set out to protect this order by creating an atmosphere of fear and repression, raiding houses and arresting organizers, and by maintaining closed borders, while confiscating passports of those who attempted to go to Genova. In accordance with the government line of denouncing any anti-capitalist movement, the mainstream media has failed to give broad coverage to the whole of the movement, actively focusing instead on sensational, negative, aspects of the protests designed to polarize the public, distancing potential supporters from the issues at hand. At least 150,000 people reached Genova to participate in a wide variety of actions, including diverse ideologies and approaches. Unions, associations, collectives and autonomous demonstrators from all over the world joined to protest the politics and actions of the G8 states.
Know that the demonstration in Genoa was just the most recent clash in the global anti-capitalist struggle. In Papua New Guinea demonstrations against the International onetry Fund [IMF] were also met with deadly supression, resulting in three deaths by gunfire from police. In Acteal, Mexico 52 indigenous people were massacred for protecting their land. Demonstrations against the Narmada Dam in India, those fighting against water privatization in Bolivia, black and indigenous struggles in Columbia, and Ecuadorian farmers resisting IMF sanctions, have all met severe repression, murder, and disappearances. The Italian government and police, who are reportedly forcing prisoners to sing chants of "Viva il Duce"[Long live Mousollini] responded to the demonstrators with brutality. They fired tear gas at retreating crowds, often clearly aiming at eye level. They unleashed CS gas from helicopters over masses of demonstrators. Reports (which are not fully confirmed) list over 570 people have been hospitalized, and over 270 people imprisoned. Many are still unaccounted for. Many who were uninjured at the time of arrest are now confirmed to be hospitalized. Official police statements have been fiercly contradicted by eye witnesses. Soldiers posted throughout the hospital have denied access to the injured.
The fascist tactics included military style raids on two buildings. A school containing demonstrators was savagely attacked. Before entering, the police beat people on the streets, leaving one english journalist lying unconcious in his own blood medically unattended. Police then shouted provacations at witnesses, using the journalist as an example before clearing the blood from the street. Police then brutally beat people as they slept. The condition of many who were injured is still unknown. Many stretchers were later taken out as well as bodybags containing unknown contents. They also ripped through possesions and took money, passports, cameras, diaries, and cell phones. The police entered the Independent Media Center opposite the school and confiscated hard drives and other data storage equipment as they smashed computers.
The presence of a visiting member of parliament may be the only thing that saved the media center from identical carnage. We declare solidarity with those arrested and injured. We need to respect diversity whilst we maintain different ideologies. When the government succeeds in dividing the movement through tactics such as media control and inflitrating the demonstrations, it is a victory for repression and accomadates criminalization of a peoples movement. Police have been seen continuously wearing "black block" style clothes and inciting and commiting violent acts that protesters are then reproached for. Without this manufacture of terror, the authorities would have no basis for violence against peaceful protests. Instead of objective coverage the media has often consumed this sensational fodder without question. Thorough reflection and widespread communication are integral to counteract these tatitcs. Why focus on thrown stones and burnt cars when the G8Ìs policies result in the systematic destruction of peoples and their way of life. The politics of the rich stands over the graves of many. We call for support to achieve freedom for those who are being detained and those tortured in prison. We shall not forget these recent atrocities of human rights violations, the consfiscation of information, and extreme repression of free speech.
This declaration has been made by people from:
We write from the building of GSF and Indymedia in Genoa after witnessing the worst human rights violations in the short history of the young movement against capitalist globalisation. Two people were killed by the police on the 20th, one in Genoa and one at the border, and someone else might have been killed in the most outrageous display of fascist state brutality that all of us have seen in our lives, just a few hours ago in front of this building. This night the police broke into the school Diaz (across the road), one of the accommodation places of GSF were people were sleeping at that moment, and beat up everyone to the extent that most of the people could not walk out and had to be carried in stretchers out of the school. We don't know how many people were badly injured because we lost count of the amount of stretchers carried out of the school, but they brought about 30 ambulances for the injured people. The police also brought at least one body bag outside, maybe two, but we don't know yet whether there was a corpse inside either or both of them. Everybody was either arrested or taken to hospital. According to the testimony of one person who could escape before being arrested, people were lying on the floor saying 'no violence' when the police broke into the first floor where he was, and they battered people so badly that one of the officers had to intervene to stop the massacre. In one of the pictures taken by Indymedia (http://italy.indymedia.org) you can see a plank of wood with nails covered with blood lying next to a corner with big patches of blood on the walls.
The police also broke violently into the GSF and Indymedia building at the same time, but here they only destroyed and stole materials. They did not attack anyone (although in part of the building it was difficult to breathe due to the tear gas). Italian parliamentarians were also struck by policemen while they were trying to enter the school Diaz while the police was beginning to remove the injured.
On the 20th and the 21st the police terrorism in the streets was unprecedented in recent Western European history. On the 20th they murdered a young protestor from Genova, who was shot once in the forehead and once in the cheek, and drove backwards over his corpse. A young french woman was killed in the Ventemiglia border on the same day, while the police was preventing her and other people from entering the country. Police attacked and teargassed all the different groups that took part in the action. For instance, they threw tear gas from helicopters into the assembly point of the pacifist march, charged against the tutte bianche and the Network for Global Rights before they even started their actions, and injured a still unknown number of people. They deliberately mixed the different sorts of political expression, trying to create conflicts (for instance by pushing part of the black block into the pacifist assembly point). On the 21st they massively attacked part of the demonstration for absolutely no reason, teargassing the whole area (including the parking lot that served as the GSF convergence centre and a nearby beach) and some people were forced to jump into the sea just to escape from them. Both on the 20th and the 21st there were riots all day, all over the city, which were clearly provoked by the police. The forms of provocation were diverse: the television showed images of a group of people dressed in black going out of a police van and breaking windows. We respectfully ask our friends from the black block to reflect about the meaning of this fact, not just for them but for everybody else. This request is not meant to imply that they should not be present in large collective actions, but that we think that they should rethink their role and choices in them. People who are taken to the hospitals are arrested immediately after receiving first aid, unless they are in an extremely bad condition. One person, a member of a nonviolent group, who was horribly beaten up while sitting on the floor with his hands up, went through that experience. In the police station he was repeatedly tortured like everyone else there. The police was hitting the already wounded areas of his body and battering him for no reason. Another person who was arrested and released says that they were beating everybody and forcing them to scream 'viva il duce', which means long live Mussolini.
The police terrorism started well before the actions. The last week's were characterised by police searches all over Italy, followed by what everybody here considers to be a reproduction of the strategy of tension used by the Italian state in the 70s to crash social movements. Letter bombs were sent (by whom?) to policemen, the police exploded a car in the centre of Genova because it was parked in the same place for several days, and they alleged in the media that bombs had been planted in several places (including one of the accommodation spaces of the GSF) - all of these in order to create an atmosphere of paranoia, fears about demonstrators and social terror. They also arrested several people before the actions, including a particularly brutal case of a young woman who was kept in isolation for four days for having a van (which they claimed would be used to break into the red zone) where she kept a hatchet for camping purposes. The people who were arrested with her report that they were all so tortured physically and psychologically, including forced exposure to a succession of three posters: a pornographic one, followed by one of Mussolini and then one of the Nazi Army in action.
We know that many solidarity and denounciation actions have already taken place all over the world and that many more are being planned (see http://italy.indymedia.org). We encourage all the groups that have not planned actions yet to do so, and to prepare for sustained actions to continue until those responsible for these outrageous human rights abuses pay the full price for their actions. We suggest to these groups that their minimum demand would be the resignation of the Berlusconi government. There is a list of Italian embassies at http://www.ethoseurope.org/ethos/embassies.nsf/ (go down to the link Embassies of Italy).
We think that we need to turn this situation into a serious international problem for the Berlusconi and the other G8 governements, not just due to a basic sense of justice but also because we feel that the survival of the movement and of many of us might depend on it. This brutality shows the actual panic with which the rich and powerful are reacting to the clear fact that the world is beginning to listen to us. Seeing that they can no longer write us off as a marginal, temporary phenomenon, they are now removing all masks of ostensible democracy and showing their real face - one of oppression, violence and terrorism.
Por todos nuestros muertos, ni un minuto de silencio. Toda una vida de lucha. To honor our dead, not a minute of silence. A whole life of struggle.