I am sitting on a chair in my own home. Very nice after a week of improvised breakfasts and muddy showers.
What a week it has been. Sorry about the sudden end to the story. The Media centre depended on quite particular computers and the internet connection went lost a few times. One post didn’t get out because of that. Also on Wednesday the Alternative summit started and i got really busy. This was really what i was there for. Long before the official start of it, the whole of Rostock had been buzzing with workshops, lectures, films and debates.
I have this week learned more about agro fuels, which I first understood was the same as bio fuel, but the difference is that for agro fuel crops have been especially grown. Bio fuel could also be for example frying oil waste, which would be much ‘greener’ then agro fuel. Of course growing crop for fuel is unwise because this causes competition for cropland. In this way it already causes hunger and people to be chased of their land. Also especially in south America and a lot of southern islands the danger of this competition is proven by the destruction of acre’s of rainforests everyday. Adding crop for fuel to our demand for farmland is a big threat to biodiversity.
German political party Die Linke had arranged a meeting with one of their representatives and miss Nicola Bullard. Miss Bullard spoke about deglobalisation. I was so delighted that there is now an official term for that! It is about taking economies back closer to a national level. Trading regionally, nationally and from neighbouring countries. In most countries this is possible. The amount of available farmland is often enough to support an economy. It would also make rural life more secure and increase food security itself. In Many ways deglobalisation would contribute to a cleaner, greener and more fair world.
Other things ran into: The documentary ‘The Revolution will not be Televised’ About Hugo Chaves and another side to the closing of a Venezuelan TV Station. I might be able to put it on the net with Dutch subtitles.
People who will contribute to the internet newspaper that will go with the website. People who can assist me with answers to details about anything from workers unions and national policies to rural tropical ecological farming or the anarchist approach to globlisation.
The people from —GlobalClimateCampaign.org— Who are trying to get as many people on the streets all over the world on December 8 2007, to demand action from governments and businesses worldwide. Actions are to be held at (to be built) coal or nuclear energy plants, embassies, etcetera, and major cities. Please join or start your own action, visit their website.
And besides all that and more, I met with fantastic people from everywhere. Anyone you spoke to on the campsite or on the streets had his own story and every conversation brought interesting views. To be honest I have never before experienced such an intense bond, such a common goal.
It was sort of like a big music festival, with less music, but more good conversation. The campsite was very well organised, the only thing that will always cast a dark shadow over it will be the provocation and violence from police. Of course, I can never agree with violence from the protesters side either, and none of the people around me would. However this time I think the police force played a bigger role in provoking and sustaining it.
For example, on our last night, while we were at one of the big alternative debates, with Susan George, Alex Callinicos and John Holloway, and many many others were at the blockades near the fence at Heiligendamm, word came in to town that police had surrounded the campsite and urged to enter. Legal aid ensured everybody they had no right to do so and that it was pure show, everyone was asked to please remain where they were, so that this situation would calm down fast.
The meeting went on after a short delay, but the tension was obvious, it took more then half an hour before it was announced that they slowly retreated to their vehicles, and again a long while later, the about hundred police vehicles were also leaving the area.
I do not think I have ever experienced such anger within me. I was at that moment sitting next to Ellie, a four year old new friend from England, who stayed close to us at the campsite, (and she was not the only child there) if I had not known where she was, I don’t know if I would have been able to remain where i was.
This feeling learned me even more that there is such a different side to this. I can now understand the people who say they don’t respect the police, or that they are the enemy. Or that it is worth fighting them. I also realized that this is how people all over the world live everyday.
Not free to speak their mind, like me. Not free to go where they want, like me. Not free to protest, like me. Not living a life of choice, like me, but living a life of fear just to survive.
I am very happy to be back home, i missed my family, my bed and my shower and dont have to watch out for the police anymore. But i will never forget this feeling of opression.
This is why our victory is so sweet:
Before the whole mess with police at the campsite, the news started spreading trough town that the blockades were working and that it was allready news around the world. Many of my friends where there and told of thousands and thousands of people who kept joining. They faced police brutality again, but they beat them at heir own game. In beautiful tactics they outsmarted them and reached the forbidden red zone. there the blockades took place and remained for hours.
When we left Rostock to go home, still more than a thousand people occupied the roads. and the stories of what happened there started to emurge. About people in cars from Roctock, coming up to the blockades to join, or providing food and water for the protesters during th enight. There were even stories of policemen or women who let the groups pass, saying they where doing a good job!
When we got to stop to buy newspapers, the victory became clear. Pictures of the protesters marching trough the fields, hands in the air as a sign of peaceful intentions, leaving the police to look on. The German newspapers were full of these pictures and stories. When back in holland we checked óur newspapers. No pictures like these, but a finishing line to an article that read: They did not leave a good impression at the local people’ ……. Yeah, where was this reporter?