Greece unrest updates thread

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ftony
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Dec 9 2008 16:05

reports from the funeral. apparently police are surrounding the funeral service in Athens. this could result in more eruptions later this evening...

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Right now there are fights both in Athens and Thessaloniki.

In thessaloniki thousands of protestors attacked the ministry of north greece and thrace. The city centre is closed to all traffic and the streets taken over since 11am. Small fights between people and riot-cops... big groups of 30 civil police each are walking through the centre as well.

In athens there are fights in a few spots of Athens and especially in the parliament and around the polytechnic school.

THE UNBELIEVABLE IS THAT THE RIOT COPS APPEARED AT THE FUNERAL OF ALEXIS!

Thousands of people were at the cemetary of Faliro silent in front of the dead 15 year old student.

Suddenly squads of riot police appeared in the area around the cemetary, some young people verbally attacked them and then the riot cops attacked and arrived at the gates of the cemetary using teargas and the usual chemicals!!!

The funeral is on live broadcast on some TV channelsm, even from helicopter coverage.

Thousands (more than 5000 thousand) are encircled in the cemetary.

The last half an hour peope from the cemetary attempt to break the siege.

SPREAD THE NEWS! WE WRITE FROM INSIDE OCCUPATIONS AND BECAUSE OF THE FIGHTS WE DO NOT HAVE MUCH TIME TO SEND THE NEWS EVERYWHERE.

capricorn
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Dec 9 2008 16:51
MH wrote:
can the street militants and workers move from riot to insurrection & revolution? We can imagine the European ruling class are watching the situation closely, as the global recession bites and as usual the working class will be expected to pay. Their fear, and our aim, must be the spread of the situation in Greece across Europe. This may seem unlikely to us in the UK, but a glance at the more antagonistic situations in Italy, Spain, France, Holland & Germany means it is not impossible.

Sorry, mate, but I'm afraid the answer is no. A revolution needs a much, much higher degree of consciousness, organisation and preparation than exists in any of these countries today. In fact, for a small minority of anarchists to stage an insurrection today would be suicidal, the end result being those concerned sitting in prison reflecting on Johnny Cash's song amended to "I fought the State, and the State won".

Battlescarred
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Dec 9 2008 16:57

Johnny Cash never recorded that, it was done first by the Crickets.Otherwise, you make some interesting points.

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Joseph Kay
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Dec 9 2008 17:11
capricorn wrote:
Sorry, mate, but I'm afraid the answer is no. A revolution needs a much, much higher degree of consciousness, organisation and preparation than exists in any of these countries today. In fact, for a small minority of anarchists to stage an insurrection today would be suicidal, the end result being those concerned sitting in prison reflecting on Johnny Cash's song amended to "I fought the State, and the State won".

whilst it's easy to play the odds an predict an absence of revolution, everything suggests the current riots are far more widespread than the usual ritualistic anarchist-cop confrontations. furthermore, nurses recently held a government minister hostage over their demands, and there's widespread anger over the state of the economy. so i think characterising this as the usual suspects rucking with the cops is a gross misrepresentation. i don't know to what extent the street fighting and the workers struggles are linking up, but greek commentators certainly seem to fear that ('this shooting could bring together all the disparate groups with a gripe against the economy, the government, capitalism etc' paraphrasing one).

Lurch
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Dec 9 2008 18:01

MH wrote

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Or can the street militants and workers move from riot to insurrection & revolution? We can imagine the European ruling class are watching the situation closely, as the global recession bites and as usual the working class will be expected to pay. Their fear, and our aim, must be the spread of the situation in Greece across Europe. This may seem unlikely to us in the UK, but a glance at the more antagonistic situations in Italy, Spain, France, Holland & Germany means it is not impossible.

I don't know enough about the specifities of Greece. I agree with MH that the European ruling class is watching the situation closely.

Social instability - in particular the reaction of the working class - is at the heart of their concerns, particularly at this moment of capital's falibilty, revealed through the crisis and its implications: with that I too agree.

I believe the entry of 'angry youth' - and behind that, much, much more discontent from many different strata (including prisoners, pensioners, students, etc) with 'what is', is an important development. It is, as MH says, in continuity with other events in Europe and elsewhere.

IMO, talk of 'insurrection' or 'revolution' is premature: not that these aren't demanded by the current situation in Greece or, indeed, globally. But because the agent of that change, the working class, isn't yet at the forefront of the movement.

Which is not to say the movement, internationally, isn't underway. It's a question of orienting ourselves to know quite what to expect from immediate situations, without wanting to limit them in advance.

In this sense, I want to provide a link to the protest of schoolchildren in Germany - in no way as 'spectacular' as that we're seeing in Greece today, nor in contradiction with it - but in its own way, and in its own context, as meaningful.

http://en.internationalism.org/icconline/2008/12/school-students-in-germany

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MD
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Dec 9 2008 18:36

Its also important to realise that revlutionary consiousness is something that is raised and delevoped through and during the struggle itself. Im not saying that this will lead to a revolution, but to dismiss it because the participants arent "consious" enough is wrong in my opinion.

Sotev
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Dec 9 2008 19:24

can't leave house (block surrounded by undercover cops)
--

well, first of all, obviously, this will not lead to a revolution. could this evolve into a semi 1905? dunno . If I see assemblies of anarchists-students-immigrants-unemployed, I'll say perhaps.

I can't think whether there can be some linkage between workplace struggles and this in the traditional sense. tomorow (general strike) will prove whether it's possible or not.

Some say Greece is slowly advancing toward a state of emergency. This is most definitely a forplay of what we are to see in europe and elsewhere, if the crisis continues. (hint: you need to make friends w/ printing houses/photocopy shops in advance.)

whole blocks remain without public lights (scary!) so that the police can act freely, undercover cops in swarms, 'bait' operations etc. More policemen faced with rioters responded by firing (real firearms, not plastic bullets) midair for intimidation.

The prime minister declared that:
"In these critical times, there's a clear challenge: we have to shield the democracy against the extremist groups' violence. Right now, national unity is our common duty. (...)
All those who engage in violent acts and vandalism are enemies of democracy."

Today the state decided to forcibly start repressing the mobilizations (violent or not).

the police is attacking everywhere. in the city of Patras the police is joined by right wing people -not only neonazis, 'normal' rightwing people, acting in gangs using stones and sticks. All university occupations hold.

they crashed the peaceful demos of the students in athens.

They fuckin' threw tear gas into the graveyard during the funeral process -- a riot started immediatelly, with all sorts of people joining in.

now (night) there's riots in various areas in athens and other cities. In Athens anarchists, students and many immigrants from africa, middle east, the balkans, fight together. Perhaps fewer than yesterday, but more determined. the immigrants fight fiercely. looting is very widespread (already 50 immigrants caught by policemen). As expected, all sorts of semi-illegal activities break out in the 'anomy' zones, like in the history books.

I saw a kid not older than twelve kissing the stone before throwing it to the pigs.

This process is quite scary -- not a may-68 type sentiment, quite different I think.

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Steven.
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Dec 9 2008 19:27

Interesting as always Sotev. Reading the Guardian website earlier and other places I did notice significant numbers of people blaming the riots on "immigrants and asylum seekers". I'm assuming it was people linked to fascist websites having some sort of propaganda campaign. But also of course many migrants will be pissed off at how they've been treated by the police - we've been covering some of the absolutely shocking stories recently (police have been attacking immigrants queueing outside immigration officers, they murdered a Pakistani asylum seeker a few weeks ago - see the Greece unrest archive for full information)

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Rob Ray
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Dec 9 2008 19:43

I've modded my update in news to include a subbed version of Sotev's most recent comments.

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Dec 9 2008 19:54

I added a little to your article about the government's promised to crack down on the rioters.

I would have thought that if they start getting heavy with demonstrators now, come the general strike tomorrow with tens or maybe hundreds of thousands on the streets they might end up biting off more than they can chew...

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Rob Ray
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Dec 9 2008 19:57

From the sounds of it they could be trying to intimidate/collar as many of the rioters as possible now so they're not on the streets tomorrow. Then if they have any sense they'll keep a low profile tomorrow and clean up when its wound down.

Sotev
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Dec 9 2008 20:01

there's a chance to produce some basic internationalism. thru the common struggle
Yes, now the media sometimes talk of the good anarchists who burn banks and attack policemen, and the evil immigrants who loot clothes' stores, burn everything and attack citizens !!.

in Zefyri, a district w/ a mainly Roma population, 600 people attacked the police station. cop cars were burned. Atleast two pigs suffer wounds by shotguns. This is not the first time Roma people act so boldly in solidarity to a police murder. We must say that they act thus while traditionally being subject to a deep racism by 'greeks'.

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Steven.
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Dec 9 2008 20:02

That would be the sensible option, but if you stick hundreds of cops together tooled up and looking for revenge after four days of getting a pasting then that may not happen!

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jef costello
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Dec 9 2008 20:27

Just had a look at the latest updates, it really is kicking off.
Thanks for the information guys.

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altemark
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Dec 9 2008 21:07

There will be a solidarity action at the greek embassy in Stockholm 13.00 tomorrow. Will report back.

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@ndy
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Dec 10 2008 07:20

G'day,

Dunno if this info is already in circulation but someone has recently provided a translation of interviews on Greek TV with some of the witnesses to the shooting of Andreas Grigoropoulos. It appears to have been an execution.

http://slackbastard.anarchobase.com/?p=1534

Cheers, beers, and big ups to the @s in Greece,

@ndy.

Sotev
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Dec 10 2008 07:32

the big christmas tree of Athens on fire. on the back, the parliament building (heavily guarded by riot squads and armed special forces, it's still intact)
la poesie est dans la rue

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Dec 10 2008 09:05

The general strike called for today was, I think, originally planned as a fairly ritualistic event but there is a very good chance that it will be more than that - it provides the possibility for the 'wage earners' to come to the fore, which was what the students in the anti-CPE movement in France had been hoping for. I agree with Lurch that this movement has to be seen in the context of movements in other countries - the French anti-CPE, the Italian students, the German school students. But the support from the population in general seems to much stronger, and the Greek state, much weaker than that of France or Germany, seems to be visibly rattled, even though we're still very far from a revolutionary situation.

It's noticeable that the media focuses mainly on the confrontations with the police, but there already seems to be a serious level of organisation - regular assemblies, demonstrations, etc. It would be interesting to hear more about this side of it.

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jef costello
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Dec 10 2008 10:17

Good point Alf.
It's an exciting situation and one that we have to hope will be built upon.

Incidentally has the Greece tag deliberately had a date left off? It looks a bit strange to not have a date on it although I remember that with the France one it had a date but that did look a bit odd when it continued into the new year. So much for long hot summers smile

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Anarchia
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Dec 10 2008 11:10

Demo on Friday in Wellington, NZ

Date:
12 December 2008
Time:
12:00 - 14:00
Location:
Greek Embassy
Street:
5-7 Willeston St (off Victoria st)
Town/City:
Wellington, New Zealand

See http://libcom.org/tags/greece-unrest for details of whats happening in Greece

Organised by Anarchist Black Cross Wellington

Socialism or ba...
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Dec 10 2008 13:01

Is anything happening in London?

si
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Dec 10 2008 15:44
Quote:
demo tomorow GREEK EMBASSY

bones | 10.12.2008 14:16 | Anti-militarism | Anti-racism | Repression
GREEK EMBASSY DEMO 2MORO NOON

THINGS STILL VERY HOT IN GREECE .....demo tomorow meet at 12 o clock front greek embassy ........solidarity woth the greek comrades .....respect to alexandro WE DONT FORGIVE WE DONT FORGET @

bones

http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2008/12/414834.html

MT
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Dec 10 2008 16:17

sorry for a little offtopic, but does anyone know the birth date of Alexandros? it is just too chaotic to see one time he was 15 and then someone else says 16. Thanks for confirmation to anyone.

btw, there was a "reverent" action in front of greece embassy in Bratislava with some 50 people, more info later.

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altemark
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Dec 10 2008 19:54

A protest action outside of the greek embassy in Stockholm was held today, wednesday, at the same time as a general strike went into action in Greece. 50 exile greeks, greek exchange students, anarchists and other activists let the shouts of "cops, pigs, murderers!" and other greek chants echo in the street, showing their support for the righteous protests and strikes against the police and neoliberal government policies.

Fliers produced by greek exchange students were handed out saying: "We resist and confront all kinds of authoritarian suppression by showing solidarity and supporting demonstrations in Greece and elsewhere."

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Dec 10 2008 20:46

A swedish activist reports that a danish demonstration in solidarity with greek resistance was held in Copenhagen today. A black bloc of 250 persons gathered to march on the Greek embassy, shouting slogans again and again with particular vitality.

As no one stepped forward as organiser of the demonstration, the police decided to attack - with chaos ensuing as the demonstration surged through the streets, reaching Ströget, the main street of the danish capital.

With police trying to pen in the protestors, paint bombs were thrown as answers. 25 activists were held by police, with the majority managing to disperse into the city.

Modkraft report

Earlier the same day, activists of greek origin, armed with banners and leaflets, arranged a blocade of the Greek embassy, writes www.modkraft.dk Their goal was to hold a manifestation inside, but were held at the gates by officials. "The greek embassy is a part of the greek state. As we are greek, the greek state is ours. Therefore we should be let in to hold our manifestation" was the argument from the demonstrators, many who were greek students. After the action was concluded, they proceeded to hand out leaflets to passers by:

Quote:
The protests in Greece can not only be explained by police brutality, but also the hard economic situation, the bad working conditions and the dark future that awaits us all. The violence that we all are experiencing in our everyday life, is not only the brutal force of the police. The daily exploitation which is built into the system of wage labor and the growing reification of all aspects of our lives is also a form of life
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jef costello
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Dec 10 2008 23:24

According to the Guardian the embassy in PAris has been occupied, I've sent an email to a comrade but not heard back. Might hit up some of my students for info.

si
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Dec 10 2008 23:39

http://tapesgoneloose.blogspot.com/ has some very very good translations that are being put up intermittently on indymedia uk.

aloeveraone
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Dec 11 2008 00:50

Street fights with police at solidarity demos in Madrid (text, photos) and Barcelona (text, photos). Police station attacked at Madrid demo.

And according to this article, a solidarity demo in Rome involved attacks on police cars with firecrackers and rocks.

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Dec 11 2008 05:53

Just a foot note concerning those fabulous German stool students. You should not take for real what the ICC wrote about the "school strike". This was an isolated event in a small number of towns, often with a backup by the local school administrations that used the kid for some political pressure to get some money for the partly desastrous state of many school buildings. Without the symbolic clashes at a Berlin university and in Hannover moderated by some Antifa kids, hardly anybody wouldn't even have noticed there was such a day of action. In any case there is nothing like a movement, there are no structures except for some tiny intents of the common trotzkist sects on the search for new recruits. I really have no idea why the two German ICC members made such a noice of it.

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Dec 11 2008 20:51

For the greek comrades that read this thread. In Germany demonstrations took place in Berlin, Bielefeld, Bremen, Dortmund, Düsseldorf, Dresden, Frankfurt/Main, Hamburg, Hannover, Jena, Konstanz, Köln, Leipzig, Minden, München, Nürnberg, Oldenburg, Osnabrück, Potsdam, Ravensburg, Rostock, Saarbrücken, Schneverdingen so far.


The picture shows the demonstration at Frankfurt/Main, just in front of the consulate of the state of Greece.