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Istanbul + UK post-g8 Infotour + Italy 2009



3. ITALY 2009 G8


Last week there was a presentation in Istanbul, Turkey, done by one from
the Infotour group.

About 60 people came to the Asian side of Istanbul to see the 2.5 hour
presentation, which was hosted by local activists, a good number of
which had been to Germany for G8, and which had hosted the last infotour
event here in spring 2007.

The presentation discussed how the protests were organised, including
discussion of how various groups worked together across the political
spectrum, and talked about where groups were easily able to work
together and where conflicts arose.

There were a number of photographs and videos shown of protests,
starting from EU meeting in Hamburg, through 2 June and to the end of
the summit. Police repression and tactics were also presented and
discussed. In discussion people talked about the effectiveness of
protests on June 2, as well as the blockades, with particular attention
given to the role of Block G8 vs. the concept of decentralised actions.

Turkish people were very, very interested, but it must be noted that
Turkey has a completely different political environment. The weekend
before there was a public human rights outdoor concert, which consisted
of two pop bands, and no political speeches or controversial leaflets or
information of any type. Despite this, 5 riot buses of Turkish police
armed with semi-automatic weapons were stationed nearby, and were very
intimidating. It was mentioned that one editor of a small radical
newletter was recently arrested at his house, taken by police and beaten
to the point of needing serious hospital care, then he was released with
no charges.

In Turkey another struggle for radicals is to deal with avoiding
mandatory military service. Penalty for this can be time in prison equal
to the time of mandatory service, and it was pointed out that Turkish
prisons are not very nice. Another person during this week mentioned
that the police checked his ID and wanted to detain him, possible
because he “looked a little bit gay.” Police are notorious for beating
up gays, and there are continuing problems with banning a gay pride
parade/CSD in Istanbul.

Overall the visit was excellent, and there are a good number of comrades
doing very inspiring work in Istanbul.


This tour went through 5 cities between Manchester and Notts in late
June and early July, 2007. The goal was not only to discuss the German
mobilisation, but to also discuss and analyse differences between the
’05 UK mobilisation and the ’07 one.

There were many comments that largely the German mobilisation was much
better, quite possibly because the German radical left/autonomous scene
is so much bigger, and also because it is more centrally located in Europe.

There was much discussion of Block G8. Many people mentioned that more
decentralised actions had been anticipated, but due to the fact that
Block G8 was so well organised and effective, many people spontaneously
decided to join in. This was especially true with internationals that
might have been uncertain of actions in a place where they were not
familiar with local language and laws and police. This should be noted
for future mobilisations. People found it very easy to “plug-in” with
Block G8, and appreciated their trainings. That said, others did speak
of very effective small actions, many of which were never mentioned in
the press or on indymedia.

There was further discussion of black block actions on 2 July.
(mandatory disclaimer to follow): Of course, no one in attendence of the
discussions was present with the black block or would ever do anything
Many people questioned the aims of such actions, which did not seem to
be well targetted. Similar critique was made of the black block which
left the Reddelich camp on the early morning of 7 June, and which
resulted in poor relations with locals after people took garden
furniture of local residents to build barricades.

3. ITALY 2009 G8


It is interesting that the 2009 G8 will be on the island of Sardinia, on
a former US nuclear submarine base. Also very interesting is the fact
that most of the locals absolutely fucking hate the USA because of the
fact that they had a “little” accident with one of their subs that
spilled nuclear radiation around the area and the Americans tried to
keep it secret until some Italian scientists detected radiation in the
waters and the US military had to admit to a submarine crash that
spilled radiation into the sea.

Also, rumors (can more people help with local research here?) say that
the USA tested phosphouros and other military weapons on the island just
before the Iraq war in 2003, and that animals on the island have been
born with deformities, leading all islanders to despise the US military.

All of this leads to widespread dislike and distrust of the USA near the
location of the G8 2009. What would happen if anti-G8 activists made an
organised attempt to speak to them all soon and organise a local
opposition to G8 2009?

ok, please forward to your friends and contacts, and lets put the final
nail in the G8 coffin!