Tag-Archiv für 'riots'
[…] Any prediction is dangerous, since the condensation of historical time contains an element of unpredictability and the creation of multiple ruptures. The momentous turn towards the ‘national question’ presented as necessary for the reproduction of the current structuring of capital raises the possibility of a left or fascistoid ‘national’ counter-revolution, which of course cannot enjoy the stability (national-socialist integration into the reproduction of capital within the bounds of a national social formation) of the fascisms of the past. This can be produced as necessary when the moment of last resort comes from the vantage point of capital, which is forced to function under a ‘political economy of risk’. The appropriation of riot practices and the continually reproduced state of war in which the proletariat is forced to make any demands, together with the whole squeeze on the working/unemployed population, will all play a role towards adopting practices of the (non-)subject of the (non-)excluded. The only thing certain is that Sunday’s important event is only one of a series, forecast to be dense and keep the nights bright. […]
[…] An estimated 500,000 took to the streets of Athens on last Sunday, third day of nationwide anti-austerity mobilization. This one was a very motley crowd: one could see from patriot thugs — both leftist and ultra-right — to Stalinists of PAME and Trotskyist factions; also, a lot of middle-aged people who were not part of a specific block; among the diverse crowd were also ultras, unionists, people from popular assemblies, many migrants, insurrectionist and wild youths, anarchist and libertarian individuals and groups. The protest was scattered in many different parts. Massive police force fired tear gas repeatedly at us, as if we were cockroaches destined to be killed due to adverse effects as far as allergies of Power. Demonstrators remained outside the parliament chanting anti-repression slogans. Many steps back, and many steps forth, back and forth, with evolving clashes at the lower part. The sound and stink of flash-bang grenades and chemicals made the entire space feeling like a cage. And most of us did not seem eager to counterattack immediately and raid the brothel of democracy en mass. […] It was only in the morning, and after many hours of efforts, that firefighters managed to extinguish the flames of freedom. And there’s a mourning short period after such events, where citizens eagerly hold candles over their ruins. That hypocrisy is beyond words. Athens seems to have burned scars, with a flood of terror-frenzy scenarios in the media making ‘normality’ extremely fragile. We know as well as the Power knows, that flames rose high in the streets on February 12th, flames that may ignite other fires to burn worldwide. If this brief rebellious manifestation will not extend beyond the state borders, it will not vindicate us. In present times, amidst another round of protests on February 19th, international solidarity and complicity are more important than ever before. Solidarity with the struggle in Greece means to attack directly to any infrastructure of the State and the Capital, often within walking distance from your place. Reciprocal aid means that we are not ‘all Greeks’; we are of no country, of no nationality; we are what our revolutionary solidarity will gradually make us. […]
There are various estimations about the number of the people concentrated on the streets and squares of the country. Athens had anything over 500,000 people on the streets, it is not easy to estimate it, but before the attack of the police every street leading to Syntagma and the square were packed, with thousands more coming from the neighbourhoods on foot or by buses and trains. Half an hour before the demo one could see the metro stations and the bus stops full of people waiting to get on a vehicle that would bring them to the centre. Every city saw rallies and mass marches, with Heraclion of Crete, a city that holds a record in the recent wave of suicides, having a 30,000-strong march. Demonstrations alla round the country turned violent, with people destroying banks or occupying governmental buildings, e.g. in Volos the branch of Eurobank, the Inland Revenue Offices and the town hall were torched or in Corfu people attacked to the offices of their region’s MPs, trashing them, the town hall of Rhodes was occupied during the demo and still is occupied, to mention but a few of such actions.
Police did several preemptive arrests in the morning hours before the start of the demonstration. Several activists were attacked by police officers in plain clothes and were detained as soon as they came out of their houses, while it was obvious since very early that police wanted to keep people away from the parliament. In there the new austerity package (an over 600-page document that was given to the MPs 24 hours in advance with the advice to vote for it before Monday morning when the stock markets will open) was being “discussed”. Early afternoon when the occupiers of Law School tried to march from the School to Syntagma the police attacked to them breaking the block, while they attempted to raid the School several times during the night, using also rubber bullets. Well before the arrival of most demonstrators who were still on their way, the police attacked en masse the crowd in Syntagma Square using physical violence, chemical gases and shock grenades. After the attack a big part of the demonstration was concentrated on Amalias st, Fillelinon st, Ermou st, Mitropoleos st and Karagiorgi Servias st. People battled with police for over 5 hours in their effort to return to Syntagma. Other people erected big barricades across Korai sq. on both Stadiou st and Panepistimiou st. and fought trying to reach Syntagma or defend themselves from police attacks. On Panepistimiou st. police concentrated much of its forces on the barricade in front of Athens University and people clashed head to head defending their barricade. DELTA motorcycle police raided several times the crowd, esp. in Mitropoleos street, MAT riot police did the same several times but also things went the other way around. Besides the barricades and the substantial groupings of people, demonstrators broke in various smaller groups that clashed with small groups of police or walked around searching for a barricade or to join a larger group.
After midnight the majority of the parliamentarians (199) voted for the new austerity memorandum that -among other measures- includes the drop of salaries by 22% and drops the minimum salary at about 400 Euro per month, while unemployment rate has been doubled (over 20% in Nov 2011) within 16 months.
74 demonstrators were arrested and over 50 people injured by the police were hospitalised, the number of detainees remains unknown.
Several banks, governmental buildings and two police departments (Acropolis and Exarchia depts.) were attacked by demonstrators during the night, while Athens city hall was occupied, but police concentrated forces invaded the building and arrested the occupiers. Over 40 buildings were burnt in Athens, while occupations of public buildings still are holding all around Greece. The Law School occupation issued a statement in early morning of 13/02/2012: “It was decided by the assembly of the Law School occupation that the occupation continues. We call everyone on the streets to continue the struggle. Nothing ended, everything now starts, the Law School is a centre of the struggle and as such it will remain”.
Tens of banks and other buildings are burning across Athens after today’s demonstrations. There are huge riots in Thessaloniki and Patra as well. The situation seems to be spiralling out of control.