MENAGE A HUIT
The idea for the annual G8 summit was the idea of France in the
mid-1970s to help the worlds richest economies deal informally
with big crises, but as one commentator said Its list of memorable
achievements is almost zero. Recent summits have been noticeable
only because of the length of their vacuous final communiqués,
the distance at which the political leaders have been kept from
the public and the outrageous cost of organising the meetings.
As the protests against such get togethers have become, shall we
say, more vocal so these costs have soared as the repression racket
has been stepped up while the summits have taken place in ever more
remote settings. Still, none of this has swayed the G8 from its
relentless march towards corporate colonisation of the planet, using
globalisation and free trade as a smokescreen for economic blackmail,
corruption, state terrorism and warfare.
Georgian Governor and Mayor Sonny Perdue took the highly unusual
steps of declaring a state of emergency in six coastal counties
before the summit had even began citing potential danger
unlawful assemblages, threats of violence and otherwise, giving
police powers to arrest people and disperse crowds. Avenger surface-to-air
missile batteries were scattered throughout backed by checkpoints,
small tanks and uniformed soldiers. This 20,000-strong force of
occupiers, stood on every street corner or flew overhead in helicopters,
in scenes what one protestor remarked was more reminiscent
of Gaza than Georgia.
Still as Governor Perdue put it If we had to err, we were
going to err on the side of safety
When you host the leaders
of the free world, theres no room for mistakes. A show of
force can be a deterrent.
The cops and corporate media had also been busy warning of the
invading army of protestors ready to raze the city to the ground.
In the end the over the top tactics worked with the demonstrations
small in number. As one demonstrator put it Many locals confessed
to us that they were scared of the police propaganda or just didnt
see how any of this had anything to do with them. The irony of hearing
this in a pollution-ridden public housing neighborhood while the
wealthiest men in the whole world met to decide the fate of working
people worldwide just 15 minutes away was not lost on us.
All this costing around $37 million, which SchNEWS reckons wouldve
been better spent on cleaning up Brunswicks environment. Instead
officials say their success at squelching potential terrorism and
violent protests has persuaded law enforcement agencies across the
country to make the Georgia experience a blueprint for national
security special events. And if the people start complaining
about travel restrictions or the army on every street corner, then
a gentle reminder of the threat of terrorism (or even a spell in
jail) should scare them back into line.
G is for Greed
So just what did the G8 discuss? Well debt was high on the agenda
with the Bush regime generously calling for Iraqs estimated
foreign debt of around $120 billion to be wiped out. This of course
has nothing to do with American not being owed any of this debt
and the Bush regime being anxious that rather than oil revenue being
used to pay foreign creditors, it should instead be used to finance
reconstruction and other infrastructure projects, for which US firms
have been given the most lucrative contracts! This Iraqi debt relief
however wouldnt be extended to the most impoverished countries
of Africa who received no such concessions.
So forget the war on poverty these powerful nations are far too
busy making money out of war to care about that. Between 1997 and
2001 at least two-thirds of all arms sales came from five of the
G8 members - America, Russia, France, Britain and Germany, busy
arming some of the worlds worst human rights abusers. As Oxfam
commented If the same amount of money and the same political
will committed to the war on Iraq were put into aid, trade, and
debt relief, it would end the suffering of millions of people. For
the cost of just two stealth bomber planes, 48 million children
in Africa, who have never had the chance to learn to read or write,
could attend school for a year.
* Next year the G8 will be in Scotland at the Gleneagles hotel
in Perthshire from 6th-8th July. People in the UK are already organising
protests, under the umbrella group Dissent. Some of these groups
have already been busy during last weeks summit including Nottingham
where they organised a critical mass bike ride around
the city, pestered the local McDonalds and blocked the Oil Terminal
at Colwick; while in Worthing they opened a new anti-G8 social centre
with a Festival of Resistance. www.dissent.org.uk
* Next Saturday will see the beginning of the trials of 29 Italian
policemen and officers who face charges related to the brutal night
time raid on the Diaz school in Genoa, Italy during the anti-G8
demonstrations there in 2001 (see SchNEWS
* At the same time in Switzerland the court case against four people
from the Aubonne Bridge action at last years G8 Summit in Evian
(see SchNEWS 408/9) will begin. Two climbers
were cut from the climbing rope by police, falling over 20 metres
onto a riverbed and sustaining very serious injuries. While the
policeman who cut the ropes remains on duty, ironically, the four
protesters, have all been charged with blocking the traffic and
endangering human life! www.aubonnebridge.net
Crap Arrest Of The Week
For quoting a Clash song..!
Mike Devine, from a Clash tribute band, was arrested earlier this
month after a text message he sent was intercepted. The text, a
lyric from Clash song Tommy Gun, contained the words
jetliner and hostages and was, apparently,
sent to the wrong number. The recipient then informed police who
sent Special Branch to arrest Devine in his office before interrogating
him. He was later released without charge. So how exactly did the
message get intercepted? One terrorism expert stated
the bloody obvious that it clearly shows that spy-base GCHQ is monitoring
all vocal and textual mobile phone traffic.
FOR TRUCK'S SAKE!
While the leaders of the G8 talk about the benefits of globalisation
and free trade agreements, the finer details of what this
actually means to people usually dont get so much press.
Earlier this month the US Supreme Court made a ruling allowing
Mexican trucks to enter U.S. roads - even if they break Americas
more stringent emissions standards
The court said that thanks to the North America Free Trade Agreement
(NAFTA), the U.S. had no right to exclude Mexican trucks. Analysts
estimate that more than 30,000 Mexican trucks could enter the U.S.
this summer and by 2010, Mexican trucks will emit twice the particulate
matter and nitrogen oxides as their American counterparts. The ruling
will increase pollution and smog in southern states already suffering
from poor air quality, as well as keeping ineffective Mexican environmental
policies that jeopardize the health of their people.
The North American Free Trade Agreement (see SchNEWS
200) was signed between Mexico, Canada and the States in 1994
and was another one of those free trade deals that we were told
would benefit everyone. Except that the only people it has benefited
has been surprise, surprise multinational corporations. Just check
out Chapter 11 of NAFTA which allows corporations to sue if they
think certain environmental law raise unfair barriers to trade and
affect its profits! So if the US banned polluting Mexican vehicles
from its roads, it could be sued by the Mexican companies for loss
As John W. Warnock, a Canadian political economist and author of
The Other Mexico: The North American Triangle Completed
puts it It should be remembered that these trade agreements
have very little to do with trade. Even before they were signed
we had almost complete free trade. The new agreements are primarily
about private investment rights.
Neoliberalism and NAFTA have been good for the rich in Mexico
and the large corporations
Mexicans know that their country
is falling behind the United States and Canada in every area. Aside
from incomes, spending is very low on education, health, agriculture
and rural development, and research. It is not surprising to find
that most people, including academics, do not believe that so-called
free trade has been good for their country.
As Kevin Danaher from Global Exchange put it The free market
ideology is this bullshit that they put out there to pry open Third
World countries and to keep people here stupid and think, Oh,
get the government out of the way. Let capital decide how the world
will be run. Well, duh. If you let capital decide how the
world is going to run, theyll cut down every tree, theyll
kill every fish, theyll push our wages down to zero, theyll
pollute the shit out of everything, because all they care about
is making money.
* Read Shafted: Free Trade and Americas Working Poor
where farmers, fishermen, garment workers etc. describe the ruin
that free trade agreements have unleashed on them. To order copies
* As the recent Organization of American States meeting in Quito,
Ecuador protesters marched through the city to protest against Plan
Colombia and the Free Trade Area of the Americas agreement, as well
as demand the resignation of President Lucio Gutierrez. Leonidas
Iza from the Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities of Ecuador
said he wanted the delegates to see there is hunger, there
is deep poverty, and there is corruption in Ecuador.
Due to a lack of news getting through to that far corner of the
earth-Avon and Somerset, the police force in their wisdom have failed
to react to hordes of testerone up males pouring out on to the streets
of every major town beating each other to death and drowning each
other in puke. They have also not heard of the carnage, torture
of innocent people, mutilation of children and the on going mass
slaughter of civilians that is being carried out throughout the
world by our government in a misguided notion of freedom.
At least someone in this country is getting real, all these paranoid
MPs harping on about the threat of terrorism, gun crimes and inner
city violence; bloody lefties scaremongering over racial
attacks, Islamaphobia and deaths in police custody, when the real
threat to our freedom and livelihood is carried out according to
Superintendent Adrian Coombs of the Avon and Somerset police, by
people dancing - bastards! There also seems a worry that these dancy
people, who apparently stay up all night in their drug crazed stupors,
are secretly plotting the overthrow of our democratically rejected
government and have more friends that the police themselves. Old
Coombsy baby, not to be outdone who stresses that he can dance with
the best of them its just that no one has asked him
- believes that previous laws which stated that there needed to
be at least a hundred people gathered in an open space for the old
bacon troupe to take action, has now been changed to
just twenty, even if thats inside a dodgy old warehouse. This
is good news for all those sad people out there who have birthday
parties and less than twenty people turn up. Its the
law mate, I would have invited more, you know how it is?
Yet, this is only half of it. Old Superintendent Adrian Coombs,
which could be abbreviated as SAC if only, has had a
rethink, and thought that those sad people with less than twenty
friends may also be, not only smiling in the face of the law, but
actually having the audacity to have a good time. And Public Assembly
is no longer 20 people, but can be comprised of just two people!
Two people! What kind of partys that! Maybe the sought Coombsy
would invite his mates too. Yeah, you know, I would come,
its just that Ive got to watch some paint dry-sorry!
And of course it would be against the law. The next policemans
Ball, lets all turn up and arrest the bastards.
The force is believed to be one of the first in the country to
adopt the new legislation under the Anti-Social Behaviour Act 2003
making Avon and Somerset a non smiling zone. This is Englands
answer to Chinas One Child Policy the One
Mate Policy of Somerset, you are only allowed another mate
under exceptional circumstances, and the circumstances are, you
have to reek of bacon. Operational planning head, (if only the party
scene had one of them) Super Coombsy, stated,
In the past weve had a situation where officers realised
they could do little until a rave had been going on for some time,
meaning serious disruption to both local people and officers.
See what you are doing out there, hiding in your derelict warehouses
in the midst of some rundown industrial estate, you are forcing
the Somerset police, who are busily sorting out serious crime in
their tea rooms, to come out in the middle of the night when all
decent taxpaying types are in bed, and with sirens blaring,
turn the devil worshippers music off and make those drug induced,
drunk individuals drive home. This is about on par with throwing
thousands of testeroned up males onto the street at the same time.
It is no wonder that these same people came up with the idea of
invading Iraq to stop uprisings being put down by force and innocent
people being tortured. Can you see a pattern developing here?
Lucky for us the Somerset police will now be able to stop those
past outrageous incidents of loved up individuals dancing in fields
and smiling away in dusty old empty warehouses. Or will they? Lets
face it weve all been here before, but be aware those party
putter oners as this new legislation applies inside as well and
anyone who is moved on faces arrest if they try to start up another
gathering within 24 hours. So to recap, you can only have a party
if you are alone, not playing music, and you are not inside or outside-no
* Despite the best efforts of the authorities, free parties still
happen up and down the country every week. Go to www.partyvibe.com/freeparties.htm
for a list of phone numbers and websites.
Green Futures Field (From
Thursday: GM Crops, How to produce a newsheet, and
Friday: Bio Diesel, Climate Change and Rainforest Depletetion
Saturday: GM Crops, How to produce a newsheet and Rainforests
Sunday: Bio Diesel, Climate Change, and Earthships
Plus: SchNEWS live (SchLIVE). Check the SchNEWS
tent for more details
Plus: SchNEWS Films Premieres over the weekend
Or pop along to the tent for free info, laughs and all
the usual SchNEWS SchNANIGANS!
Despite Prime Sinister Blair telling the G8 that climate change
is one of the biggest issues Britain, scared of the threat of fuel
protests over the increasing cost of oil, has been putting pressure
on OPEC to increase oil production. However, once again the true
cost of oil measured in massive environmental degradation for those
living near extraction sites, has once again been underlined by
a new report from Friends of the Earth. The report on Shell, has
chronicled how substantial levels of crude oil have
been found in mangrove forests and lakes in Nigeria, oil spillages
have occurred close to communities and contaminated their water
pumps, and has never been cleaned up. We saw pipes clearly
corroded and spilling. They were all over the place, said
Brian Shaad, FoEs parliamentary campaigner. Communities
repeatedly say their grievances are dealt with by security forces
rather than the company itself.
A leaked section of the report alleges that Shell failed to act
on promises made by former chairman Philip Watts, to clean up the
South African Petroleum Refinery, the largest crude oil plant in
It claims Sapref, jointly owned by Shell and BP, dumps 19 tonnes
of sulphur dioxide a day into the air, six times the amount emitted
by modern refineries.
In 1995, 9 environmental activists campaigning against the environmental
destruction of the Niger Delta by Shell Oil, were executed for their
activities, Shell said the verdict was not its concern, and Watts
later stated that he was quite proud of Shells
activities in Nigeria (SchNEWS 49). This
from a company whose greenwash adverts gush our core values
of honesty, integrity and respect for people define who we are.
(says it all really).
Recently the United Nations has been trying to pass laws that would
try to keep corporations in order (SchNEWS
453).Of course, these attempts to legislate against disregard
for human life in the name of profits, have been opposed by business
lobby groups such as the International Chamber of Commerce, backed
by, surprise surprise, Shell.
SchNEWS recently received an email from Christian S. Yorgure, of
National Union of Ogoni Students International. He told us of how
Shell has now served a subpoena on his organisation but that this
is a ruse
to make the public believe that that they are
using legal means to challenge accusations. No! Shell pays agents
who do dirty jobs; they use high government and community officials
who are easily swayed with money.
The Ogoni people have suffered terrible environmental hazards
for over 3 decades of oil exploration and drilling activities in
their homeland without compensation. The Ogoni people made history
by successfully protesting the evil of the giant multinational;
a campaign that embarrassed Shell. In reaction, Shell used the then
military power in Nigeria to commit mayhem on the indigenous Ogoni
people. The massacre of thousands of the Ogoni people of Nigeria
in 1993, and a trial which is believed to have been sponsored by
Shell that led to the hanging of Ken Saro-Wiwa and eight other Ogoni
Human and Environmental Rights Activist in 1995, does not seem enough.
Shells war against the undaunted Ogonis looms on.
It was about 10 pm on June 1, 2004 that I received a call from
the Secretariat of the National Union of Ogoni Students International
(NUOS Intl) detailing an encounter with an agent of Shell
who only introduced himself as a detective. According to the NUOS
Secretary, the detective presented himself in an unruly manner and
refused to answer any questions as he served a copy of the subpoena.
As the Ogoni Class action against Shell gathers momentum, the company
who has not been able to penetrate the undaunted youths behind the
suit, have chosen to thread a sinister path; hounding down the Ogonis
who truly believe and lead the campaign against Shell. NUOS Intl
is a righteous voice echoing the sufferings of the entire Ogoni
people. They have organized many seminars both in Europe and the
United States. In 2001, NUOS Intl protested against the World
Environmental Centers Seventeenth Annual Gold medal Award
for International Corporate Achievement to the Royal Dutch/Shell
Group of Companies. To doubt the sinister culture of Shell is an
ehxhibition of gross ignorance; and to continue to invest in Shell
in my opinion makes you a murderer.
It is unfortunate to realize that people can still be fooled by
Shell despite the much publicized atrocities committed the world
over but particularly, in under-developed countries. The revealing
accounts of Dr. John Huong, who was Shells geologist for almost
30 years and the Affidavit of Alfred Ernest Donovan, who has had
a business relationship with Shell for over 40 years, are appropriate
references illustrating Shells unethical practices. These
testimonies corroborate the fact that Shells true business
practice is to lie, cheat, and kill.
As published in the Financial Times of June 09, 2004 under the
heading Deep well of troubles in Nigeria Shell reiterated
its determination to remain in Nigeria. However, the Ogoni people
who are well aware of the tactics of Shell have vowed to keep them
out of their land. The members of NOUS Intl are determined
to go the length with Shell intellectually and legally. Shell
must restore the flora and fauna in Ogoni; Shell must clean up Ogoni
and pay enough compensation for several thousands of lives lost
as a result of their involvement in the area since 1959, said
a member of NOUS Not even the subpoena served by a sinister
operative can deter us; we must demand our rights legitimately,
another member said during a group discussion.
* To find out more about Shells unsavoury activities see
* London Rising Tide, a direct action grassroots group has joined
forces with artists to express anger over the role of BP in climate
change and human rights abuses around the world. Artwork can be
viewed till Monday 21st June at 50 Chalk Farm Road NW1. 07969 786770
What's Bingoing On?
Theres a new Occupied Social Centre Open in Brighton at the
Old Bingo Hall, 193 Portland Road Hove. Events this weekend include
5pm Talk and film on climate change by Rising Tide
7pm : West Papuan refugee and tribal leader gives a talk on the tribal
struggle for freedom in West Papua
9pm Learning from Ladakh film[Development threatens a
whole way of life in this north indian province]
10.30pm Hoyaanisqats! film [the natural and modern clash
in a beautiful and horrifying collage]
Plus vegan food, tunes, arts, chill-out, infos
4pm : zine workshop [intro to zines & how to make a zine the wonderful
world of self publishing]
6pm : talk and film about attempts to organise grassroots movements
8pm : The Weather Underground film [impressive documentation
with loads of interviews of former members of one of americas most
notorious armed group]
10pm : Surplus film [against consumer culture with John
To find out whats happening in your area go to
SchNEWS in brief
- Plans are underway to set up an autonomous social centre and
info shop in Newcatle-Upon-Tyne. It aims to house a cafe, a film
club, political art space, a newcastle indymedia, a radical book
shop and anything else you wanna put your energy into. To get
invovled e-mail : firstname.lastname@example.org
- A campaign is underway to oppose plans for a superquarry in
some of the best countryside in the Vale of Glamorgan. Sadly,
like at Blackwood, dormice are again under threat from the forces
of destruction, as are badgers and otters - to join local residents
in campaigning against the quarry, look up: www.stopthesuperquarry.co.uk
- In San Francisco about 200 people protested against GM food
and the annual Biotechnology Industry Organisation convention.
There were about 30 arrests and police also confiscated rotten
fruit and vegetables. www.indybay.org
- The Iraqi Occupation authorities have awarded a $ 293 million
contract to the Aegis Defense Services, creating the worlds
largest private army. It is headed by Lieutenant Colonel Tim Spicer,
who has been investigated for illegally smuggling arms and planning
military offensives to support mining, oil, and gas operations
around the world
- Environmental campaigners have set up a camp near the Stansted
airport in Essex to protest against its expansion. The airports
owners have begun offering compensation to people affected, but
protestors say they plan to stay until expansion plans are dropped.
01279 870558 www.stopstanstedexpansion.com
- B.A.S.S. Summer SOLSTICE PARADE -8.45 from Black Rock car park(near
Marina).Samba Band, DJs, percussion , performers and Brightons
very own replica Stonehenge!
Dissent is a network of groups and individuals planning actions
and taking direct action against the 2005 G8 summit at Gleneagles,
Scotland, and what it represents. What actions happen against it
are up to those who get involved; unlike the G8 there is are no
leaders telling people what to do, it is up for all those involved
to have an equal say.
Demonstrations against the G8 have a history of being pretty spectacular.
In 1999 while the G8 were meeting in Cologne the City of London
was famously shut down for the day with the J18 Carnival Against
Capital. In 2001 when they met in a fortress in Genoa, Italy, 300,000
people faced paramilitary police on the streets outside, resulting
in the destruction of large parts of the city and the murder of
one protester by the police.
Dissent is organising a diverse range of events to make people aware
of next years G8 summit in the UK and the growing movement which
To find out more www.dissent.org.uk
While Neo-Labour have been busy telling us to get off our fat arses,
do a bit of exercise and watch what we eat, seventeen senior MPs
flew out to Portugal on Sunday enjoying a Euro 2004 freebie - courtesy
of health conscious burger giants McDonalds. The junket comes
just days after MPs called for the Football Association to drop
McDonors as a sponsor.
After watching Englands first game, they joined Portuguese
dignitaries for a reception of sherry, champagne and canapes before
a four-course dinner that included starters of melon or swordfish,
main courses of roasted stone bass with spinach or leg of lamb followed
by cheese or the traditional Lisbon almond dessert Toucinho. SchNEWS
scribes just wanna know if they can have fries with that !
SchNEWS warns all readers.if youre looking for a quickie
weve got a long column full of hard facts to tickle your G-8
NOW OUT!!! 'PEACE DE RESISTANCE' - SchNEWS Annual
2003 - £8 + £2.00 p&p
- SchNEWS Round
issues 51 - 100 Sold out - Sorry
- SchNEWS Annual
issues 101 - 150 Sold out - Sorry
- SchNEWS Survival
Guide issues 151 - 200 and a whole lot more £2.00 inc. postage
- The SchQUALL
book at only £7 + £1.50 p&p.
and SQUALLs YEARBOOK 2001. 300 pages of adventures from
the direct action frontline. £3 inc p&p. You can order
the book from a bookshop or your library, quote the ISBN 09529748
- SchNEWS Of
The World issues 301 - 350. 300
more pages of adventures from the direct action frontline. £5
+ £1.50 p&p. You can order the book from a bookshop
or your library, quote the ISBN 09529748 6X
In the UK you
can get SchNEWS Annual, Survival Handbook, Yearbook 2001 and SchNEWS
of the World for just £15 inc p&p.
£6.00 for individual books, £13 for above offer).
In addition to
50 issues of SchNEWS, each book contains articles, photos, cartoons,
subverts, a yellow pages list of contacts, comedy etc.
to SchNEWS: Send 1st Class stamps (e.g. 10 for next 9 issues)
or donations (payable to Justice?). Or £15 for a year's subscription,
or the SchNEWS supporter's rate, £1 a week. Ask for "originals"
if you plan to copy and distribute. SchNEWS is post-free to prisoners.