Report on the struggle of the 'Pitchfork Movement' in Sicily which has seen a major blockades around the island (including the port of Palermo) for the past four days in protest against rising petrol prices.
Hundreds of heavy vehicles have blocked the port of Palermo in a protest by hauliers that will last until tomorrow. Two of the three boats stuck in the port since Monday left yesterday evening, headed for Naples and Genoa respectively.
In Sicily, today (Thursday 19th) has been the fourth day of the blockade and the Aias (Associazione Imprese Autotrasportatori Sicilia - hauliers' association) hauliers, farmers and the 'Pitchfork Movement' don't seem to be ceding one milimetre: they call for government intervention to reduce the price of petrol in Sicily.
To get what they are asking for, protesters have blockaded different major junctions, blocking traffic at city entrances, the Palermo-Messina railway line and the petro-chemical plant in Gela. The stoppage has led to a lack of petrol at filling stations, especially in Palermo.
The same has happened to food provision that has started to run out in supermarkets which are now short of supplies.
This is a really rough translation from the InfoAut website; if anyone sees something I've missed then just post below.
Also want to have a go at
Also want to have a go at translating this more analytical piece from a group of Sicilian anarchists.. this movement has had some other slightly dodgy parts around it (there's been quite a lot of fascist support/involvement in the movement).
Ultimately still worth supporting - and it seems that people from the Social Centres/Left have been - but would be dishonest not to give it a mention, I think..
I though the transport
I though the transport industry in Sicily was particularly troubled by organised crime. The people I've spoken to also suggest that the same criminals have a sort of secessionist/nationalist agenda with lots of history and stories to fall back on. But much of the left there shares those views i guess?
I mean, there's definitely
I mean, there's definitely truth in that.. organised crime permeates basically every corner of life in the south of Italy and they do have a political agenda (along with local politicians, though its often difficult to tell the difference!).. I wouldn't say its particularly nationalist as they basically just want autonomy (but not complete independence) from local government so they can run Sicily as their local fiefdom.
I wouldn't say the organised crime thing is particularly relevant here though.. this is about central government raising the price of petrol and people are genuinely pissed off as its making life unlivable on the island..
Like I said, that's not to say there aren't dodgy elements to it.. this article here (in English) is a good critical intro into the movement and its dodgy supporters. But I think it would be a mistake to write off the whole thing as a power-play by local Mafiosi.. I'd say the more interesting thing is how the far-right in Italy have changed tack in recent years and are trying to insert themselves into popular social movements which, traditionally, would have been the home of the left..
In this blog -in italian
In this blog -in italian language-, the blogger analyzes the situation took place in Sicily with the pitchfork movement in general and locally and analyzes some of the demonstrators' demands presented to the President of Sicily Raffaele Lombardo
Ed, then your Italian isn't
Ed, then your Italian isn't that shite if you were able to translate that...! ;-)
I'm about to post a translation of an analysis piece by InfoAut. The links you posted were really interesting reads, but what can I do, I have a soft spot for InfoAut ;-)