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<nettime> optimism/pessimism digest [snafu, taiuti, hauben]
nettime's_notebook on Mon, 17 Feb 2003 03:46:38 +0100 (CET)

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<nettime> optimism/pessimism digest [snafu, taiuti, hauben]

snafu <mdeseriis {AT} tiscali.it>
     We The People
"Lorenzo Taiuti" <md3169 {AT} mclink.it>
ronda {AT} ais.org (Ronda Hauben)
     Denial of rights of Protestors at Saturday's NYC demonstration

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Date: Sun, 16 Feb 2003 20:32:37 +0100
From: snafu <mdeseriis {AT} tiscali.it>
Subject: We The People

Ida Dominijanni
Il Manifesto, 16 feb 2003
Translated by Snafu

"We, the people, do not want this war: millions of Americans are with you 
and challenge President Bush" says from the stage of San Giovanni in Rome, 
Mss Campbell the first woman priest of the council of churches of United 
States - firstly welcomed with coldness and then applauded with warmth. "We 
the people", the signature that inaugurate the American Constitution, a 
formula than returns a plural conception of "the people", which is one, 
just as long as it is aware to be made of many and different, "we". "We the 
people" will say few hours later the demonstrators of New York. But even in 
Rome, it is not only from the mouth of Mss Cambpell that the formula 
resounds in the air.

In the air of Italian capital, oscar of the world pacifist day, with the 
complicity of a transparent air as only the Roman winter can donate, you 
can see in transparency something new under the sky of politics. Over the 
time, we saw the declining of the stars of party representation, flag 
belonging, national and nationalist identity; we saw, over the last two 
years, the uprising of a multiple and global movement, unlimited for the 
perception of space and for the planetary dimension of its goals. Thus, 
such a multifarious, young and mature, male and female demonstration, so 
rainbowing to shadow all the party, particular and belonging flags; so 
global to never fall in the trap of identity juxtaposition that make a 
single entity of an enemy government and its people, this was unseen yet. 
Singular-plural: we the people for the peace, in all the world, without 
nothing else in the middle, nor national borders, nor states, nor 
governments, nor parties. We the people, the signature of American 
Constitution against the  American Sovereign, the disorganized civil 
society against the armed organization, the global multitude against the 
stars and stripes Nation which wants to appropriate globalization by 
proclaiming wars of civilization.

New furrows, new contradictions as we would say once upon a time, announce 
the political panorama of the new century and rewrite the heritage of the 
world. There's something new, a sort of heterogenesis of the aims, in this 
so Americanized civil society -  from the clothes and slogans to the rock 
soundtrack - which turns against the cupola of American power. As if by 
passing from modern European forms to the postmodern ones on the other side 
of the ocean, from active political representation to passive 
video-politics, from organized to plebiscite democracy, western politics 
would have draw a complete circle and found itself to a watershed: not at 
sunset though, but at a new beginning, in which the European origin and the 
American century remix themselves in new combinations.

It is not only a new space to be draw by the planetary march that unravels 
itself from capital to capital from timezone to timezone, but also a new 
time. Born from the ashes of bipolar world, grown together with the 
promises of a world without borders, with the declining states and the 
hybrid identities, the other politics is already in action and it says, all 
over the world, that war that rebuilds the borders, the Leviatan, the 
identity cards is, above all, anachronistic: out of time, Give peace a 
chance, sings the march, and we can give it more than one.

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From: "Lorenzo Taiuti" <md3169 {AT} mclink.it>
Subject: Peace
Date: Sun, 16 Feb 2003 18:31:18 +0100

Huge peace manifestation in Rome!!!!
Oddly peaceful, full of everybody from social centres to nuns!!!!
Impressive & meaningful.

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Date: Sun, 16 Feb 2003 18:07:11 -0500 (EST)
From: ronda {AT} ais.org (Ronda Hauben)
Subject: Denial of rights of Protestors at Saturday's NYC demonstration

Here is an article I wrote for Telepolis about yesterday's demonstration
in New York City. The sentiment of people supporting each other around
the world for increased cmmunication and collaboration rather than
war and violence is one of the promises that the Internet and the
Netizens represent for the world.

The article is also available in German at http://www.heise.de/tp

---------- Forwarded message ----------
date: Sun, 16 Feb 2003 17:21:15 +0100
from: ronda {AT} panix.com
to: ronda {AT} panix.com
subject: TELEPOLIS: Massive Anti-War Protest in New York Cit...

Dieser TELEPOLIS Artikel wurde Ihnen
von  <ronda {AT} panix.com> gesandt.

Massive Anti-War Protest in New York City Demonstrates

Ronda Hauben=A0=A0 16.02.2003

the U.S. Government's Hostility to Democracy At Home and Abroad

There were marches in cities around the world on Saturday, February 15,
2003. Not, however, in New York City. Protesters were not only denied
the right to march, but massive numbers of people were also denied the
right to be part of the rally. Police on horseback charged protesters
and beat up demonstrators, preventing them from joining officially
approved rally on First Avenue. Yet estimates are that 1 million people
were in New York City on Saturday to protest the U.S. government making
war against Iraq.

"New York City politicians didn't want us here," commented one
protester. "They tried every single roadblock. We didn't let them win.
We are here."

Another protester explained, "Just think, people all over the world are
doing it. It's the only way to survive. Everybody came for the same
reason, No War."

Responding to the fabrication of a terrorist alert called "code orange"
used by city and federal government officials to deny protesters the
right to march on Saturday, a student from Cornell University said:

"The city did a lousy job. They give a permit to rally but then they
don't let people get there. The fact they didn't give the permit to
march is outrageous. The whole code orange is crap."

The U.S. federal government had sent representatives to join the New
York City government to ensure that an appeals court judge would back
the city's refusal to allow a protest march. The claim was, however,
that the protesters would be allowed to have a rally. As it turned out,
the police denied a great number of protesters the right to join the
rally on First Avenue.

It was a cold day (-5 C) in New York City on Saturday. People came to
protest the U.S. government plan to make war in Iraq. They came by
trainloads and busloads from other cities. They came from all over New
York by subway, bus, and on bicycle. There were young and old, students
and retirees, labor unions and churches, represented. The city had
granted a permit for the demonstrators to rally on First Avenue several
blocks North of the United Nations and further uptown. The rally of
people stretched from 51st Street to 84th Street on First Avenue,
according to reports. But people were enclosed in metal barricades
street by street, with police limiting and in many cases denying people
the right to walk on the sidewalks or on the cross streets to get to
First Avenue.

There were numerous reports that protesters were injured and arrested
by police blocking their right to join the demonstration. Many people
tried to get to First Avenue, but were prevented by the police.
Demonstrators who couldn't get to First Avenue because of police
blockades, filled 2nd Avenue, 3rd Avenue, and there were also
protesters on the next block, Lexington Avenue. On these streets,
protesters reported police on horseback beating up people and charging
people. Local television coverage later in the day showed protesters
being charged by police on horseback and being beaten by police.

On First Avenue there were protesters as far as the eye could see. But
even on First Avenue, the police blockaded protesters on each block
keeping them barricaded from other protesters on the next block. Those
who wanted to leave the blockaded areas were often told by police to go
to one street corner, and then the police at that street corner would
not let them go anywhere, but back to where they had come from. The
constitutional right of people to express their opposition to unpopular
government activity is seriously damaged when such tactics are used by
the police.

Despite all this, there were great numbers of people protesting in New
York City. There were many, many homemade signs expressing the disgust
of people with the bullying and warmongering activities of the U.S.

Just a few of the slogans on the many homemade signs included:

"Thank you Belgium, Germany, France et al.", "Stop Mad Cowboy Disease",
"Listen to the People", "Bush the Terrible", "Danke Schon Deutschland,
Solidaritat","He's Not My President", "Drop Bush Not Bombs",
"Democracies Don't Start Wars, We End Them", "This War is 100% Bush
Shit", "Communication not Annihilation: No War Against Iraq, Netizens
Unite", "U.S.A. Says No to War Against Iraq","Another Mathematician
Against the war", and "I Want My Democracy Now."

A young child being carried on his father's shoulders wore a sign
"Dodge the Draft." Demonstrators who had traveled from the state of
Vermont who were asked their comments for an article in Telepolis,
answered, "We appreciate German attitudes. We represent the majority
opinion in our state. They accuse us of being the most liberal state.
That's why we are here." Another protester responded, "I would like to
thank Germany for taking a courageous stand against my asinine

At 68th street and First Avenue, there was a confrontation between
demonstrators and police. From 68th Street up First Avenue, there were
demonstrators wanting to fill in the ranks of demonstrators below 68th
Street. Police, however, blockaded the demonstrators and wouldn't let
them pass from 68th Street. Demonstrators on one side of 68th Street
were effectively blockaded from demonstrators on the other side of the
Street. "Let them through, let them through," demonstrators on the
South side of 68th Street yelled. The police would let a few people
through and people would clap. But then the blockade would be set up
again by the police. Only at the end of the demonstration, around 4 pm,
did the police finally allow the demonstrators North of 68th Street to
join those South of 68th Street.

The speakers for the rally included an U.S. Army National Guard
reservist whose unit had been told it was only a matter of time before
it would be sent to Iraq. There was a Palestinian woman and a Israeli
refusnik officer. There were poets and elected officials. There were
clergy of many denominations. There were calls for peace in many
languages, including Arabic and Hebrew. There was a dissident who had
fled Iraq in the 1980s explaining how it is not possible to bring
democracy to the people of Iraq by bombing them.

One of the speakers on the platform said, "The world's worse leaders
have the world's worst weapons."

A German student from Ithaca, N.Y. expressed his surprise at the
experience he had at the demonstration. "It is different here than how
they handle it in Europe," he commented, describing how the police
denied protesters the right to walk to the demonstration. "We walked
from 59th and Lexington, a crowd of people moving, but the police were
channeling them. "Eventually he said it wasn't possible to get any
further. The people couldn't go on the sidewalks. "I never saw this
before." His German wife added that, "For the first time in 50 years we
are proud of our home country and Europe."

An American demonstrator noted that, "the New York City radio stations
weren't covering the rally, except for WBAI, the one anti-war radio
station." She commented, however, "This was the first time I feel
connected to the rest of the globe."

The assault on the rights of citizens demonstrated by the treatment of
protesters on Saturday in New York City demonstrates the lack of
respect for democratic rights by both the Bush administration and the
New York City government. There are those who wonder if the plan of the
Bush administration to attack Iraq is also a pretext being used to take
away the constitutional rights of those in the U.S.

While the American people are faced with an electoral system that only
allows what many feel is two parts of the same party to participate,
there is a long history of protest in the U.S. Often this protest has
been waged against vicious repression. But the activities of the U.S.
government within the U.S. demonstrate that there is very little
popular support for the policies of the government. It is only by
waging a campaign to spread fear and terror within the U.S. that the
Bush administration, with the support of many from both parties in
Congress, can carry out their assault on other countries and people
around the world.

The anti-war movement within the U.S. needs support from peace loving
people around the world to effectively stem the tide toward fascism of
the U.S. government. The marches and rallies around the world on
February 15 have demonstrated there is such support. People who were
doing what they could to protest Bush's policies' in New York City on
Saturday, were encouraged by the massive protests of people around the


Telepolis Artikel-URL:

Copyright =A9 1996-2003. All Rights Reserved. Alle Rechte vorbehalten
Heise Zeitschriften Verlag, Hannover

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