Summit Hoppin' 2006

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Summit Hoppin' 06

Eight years after the first big summit blockades, activists are still mobilized against. On several different occasions this summer there were demonstrations and discussions about political approaches and the planning of actions. For example at the G8 summit in St. Petersburg, the Campinski near Heiligendamm, and the PGA conference in France.

St. Petersburg - and what`s next?

The meeting of the representatives of eight of the most powerful industrial states this year in St. Petersburg was once again joined by protests. Despite the fact that the preparations had been constricted by the Russian authorities, some succesful actions still took place. A spontanous pink and silver demonstration playing samba paraded through a major shopping street in Moskau, and in a separate action, the St. Petersburg hotel where some summit participants were staying was symbolically blockaded. It showed that even under such difficult conditions protests are possible.

Despite the small participation of people from western europe the networking beetween easten and western Europe was one of the most positive aspects of the protests. To strengthen these contacts, a NoBorder Camp has been planned for August 2007. The camp will take place in the Ukraine, where conditions are expected to be less restrictive. First of all the entry for people from East- and West Europe is easier and previous actions were confronted with little repression and received adequate media coverage. There will be an international preparation meeting in winter to organize this camp on an international level and support the local scene.

Campinski – the calm before the storm on the summit (die Ruhe vor dem Gipfelsturm)

Immediately after the G8 summit in St. Petersburg, over 1000 G8 opposers discussed and continued preparing the protests against the G8 summit in Heiligendamm next year in Germany. „The idea of the camp was primarily to coordinate the resistance and create next year's protest together,“ explained Rosa Camper in a concluding statement. In addition to the 2007 preparations, there were over 150 workshops. For example, video activists guided participants on the use of cameras, an international working group was founded, the infotour held Do Infotour-Yourself workshops, and the connections between the G8 and agriculture and migration issues were discussed. Aside from making plans, selforganisation was put to the test. As someone from indymedia remarked: „A lot of things did not work well, but that means we have a checklist for next year.“ But generally speaking selforganization already worked quite well. This was also visible on Sunday when almost everything had been cleaned up really fast with lots of helping hands. Although people had to be reminded from time to time to translate, participants tried to put into practice the ideals of international mobilization, which means not only to invite activists from many countries, but togive them the possibility to get involved with the organisation. The fact that this is not such an easy task can be seen from the fact that there are still two email lists, one in German and one international.

Another focus of the camp were direct actions. In Bad Doberan numerous community members were informed about the upcoming summit and its local reference by a Door-knocking-action. Later on, around 300 participants of the Campinski and NoLager-activists demonstrated in Rostock against exclusion of refugees and for „Same rights for everyone“.

Around 80 participants visited a field planted with GMOs near Rostock. Another group demonstrated against the German Neo-Nazi party, and in addition an exhibit of sculptures of Arno Breker, Hitlers favourite sculpturer was symbolically closed down. Another symbolic action which was a lot of fun was the swimming day in front of the Kempinski Hotel, site - location of next years summit. Approx. 400 people walked on the beach, accompanied by a samba band and the Rebel Clowns Armee. During the manifestation some people dropped banners out of an empty villa at the beach, calling attention to the threat of the beach privatisation. All in all the Campinski was another success and bodes well for the protests next year

PGA Conference - Networking struggles since 1998

Discussion about the G8 summit was not limited to Campinski, but also took place at the European PGA (Peoples GlobalAction) conference, a gathering at five separate locations across France. The feeling that the global days of actions (GDA), first initiated by PGA, are not working as they should was raised several times. On the first Action Days initiated by PGA there had been big demonstrations and actions as well in the global south as in the north. But in the last years they lacking substance. For that reason some groups have turned their attention to selforganization in squats and communes. This approach played an important role on the conference that was mainly organized by groups like the Sans Titre Network, which is focusing on such approaches.Nevertheless, the anti-summit mobilisation was also discussed as an opportunity to connect local struggles to their global context. How to get of the activist ghetto was an important issue of discussion that became apparent in several approaches and projects. Some of the conference participants searched for possibilities to connect the resistence against the G8 with other social struggles. Along thematic lines like migration, agriculture, anti-militarism or within the context of topics like energy, nuclear power, oil and war, different local struggles could be brought together. The idea of 'Theme Days' to preceed the G8 summit, where global connections in different contexts could be discussed, came up at Campinski and was echoed in France. By bringing people together on the basis of specific but global social concerns, the hope is that far-reaching ideas will be developed, and that these ideas will remain relevant long after the end of the summit.

One example is the working group G8 and aggriculture, which calls for worldwide actions against the agrobusiness: "Hopefully, a broad coalition of farmers, consumers, trade unionists and opponents to economic globalisation will take action against the global agri-business, gaining publicity around the G8 Summit in spring 2007. The objective is to carry out actions at various points within the agricultural production chain. For example: to blockade the sowing of genetically modified crops; to address the outrageous working conditions of employees and the ruinous prices paid by the head buyers at the multinational supermarket, Lidl; to criticise the agricultural policies of the European Union and the collaboration between different departments at the University of Rostock and agri-business in front of a pig-fattening factory. With a diversity of actions, it should be possible to show who are the winners and losers in globalised agriculture." Besides this campaign there are already groups like the „BUKO Kampagne gegen Biopiraterie“ who think about the connection beetween the G8 summit and the COP9 (conference of the Parties, a gremium of the convention on biological diversity) which will take place 2008 in Germany.

Another approach to the focus on the time before and after the summit is the Karawahnsinn/Caravan Utopia through europe with the motto " Movin Europe". The vision, which is presented on the webpage:, is to have many different caravans connecting many different people or groups. The caravans would come together at 'stations' which would be autonomous spaces, social centres etc that have the ability to host people. These stations would be a place to share experiences, find out what the different caravans have been doing, what links have been made, have workshops and discuss practical steps to move forward. The caravan will also try to share culture and develop art & creativity as we use culture to shape our politics and politics to shape our lives. But also to start a dialogue with local groups and local struggles outside of our usual activist structures.

In the meantime there had been a lot more diskussions and meeting and this was only an overview of some of the many events. In the next few months the mobilization will continue. In addition to some meetings on specific toppics or projects (see there are two general meetings:

27. - 29. Oktober: dissent!-Treffen, Osnabrück 10. - 12. November: 2. Aktionskonferenz, Rostock

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