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(en) European PGA* Conference Newspaper - Social Struggles CPE and Greece

Date Fri, 13 Oct 2006 09:01:28 +0200

Listening to stories of struggles in France...
Lets begin with two that I found emblematic: The guy from a
provincial town who goes to Paris to do some "riot tourism", then
changes his mind and goes back home to commit slightly less
spectacular crimes, but with a bunch of people he didn't know before
at all. Or that other rather too peaceful town, but where the students
do actually have the brilliant idea of the "Personalise your cops!"
contest - each faculty using eggs filled with a different color of paint.
I have the impression that the movement made a step forward with
regard to the different levels of illegality or "violence", which seems
to have at last been approached without complexes: neither taboo
nor fetishised.

In different cities, the forms of struggle varied greatly, from
occupations and blockades to "house-moving" unemployment
offices and pitched battles. There was also not so much
"specialisation" of actors (blakblok or not blakblok, etc.). With the
result that the kinds of actions seem to have been more frequently
than usual spontaneously adapted and accorded to the spirit of the
bulk of the demonstrators. Consequently, they were often accepted
in a powerful diversity of tactics (as in the best moments of the
anti-globalisation struggles), instead of becoming a factor of division
and an excuse for repression.

If "violence" isn't fetishised, it isn't the number of things broken that
is important (actually breaking things is kind of stupid i

Social Movements and the Uprising in Greek Universitie

One of the subjects that were discussed during the decentralised
conference in Dijon:was about the social movements that shattered
Europe during the last year. We organised a discussion so as to
inform people about the student movement that emerged in Greece
on May-June 2006,to share experiences and views and to discuss
about the possibility of building links between the different struggles
in France,Greece and other countries.

The uprising in the Greek universities was the largest student
movement of the last 16 years in Greece.It started as a reaction to a
law, the right wing government wanted to pass,which would made
studies more intense ,allowing expellation of students that would not
pass a number of lessons,or would not finish their studies in a
scheduled time, a law that would radically reform university studies ,
making them more "Market-Friendly".

The occupation of universities,first initiated in Athens and
Patras,Quickly spread and in two weeks 440 out of 450 faculties
were occupied by their students.Besides occupations, students
engaged in other actions like street blockading,disturbance of
shopping centers,or street theater.Huge demonstrations were held
that met a strong repression from the state and many times ended up
with big confrontations in the streets between demonstrators and
police forces.

In the occupied universities assemblies were held that were
organised in an horizontal way.The Communist Party (which at first
was against occupations) and other smaller leftist parties made
themselves appear as leaders of the movement and repeatedly tried
to impose their line on the general assemblies. In many cases the
lack of a different,radical view was obvious since a big part of the
anarchist scene refused to take part in such assemblies, practically
abandoning the field to the reformists.

During the mobilisations many students were radicalised and in
many cases the demands raised went beyond student issues
adressing deeper social problems. The government in the fear of a
bigger social explosion decided to withdraw the law at least until
October and the elections for municipal councils.

The uprising in France which started as a reaction to the CPE law
was of a very big influence among Greek students. We can mention
that one of the slogans that was shouted during the demonstrations
was "France shows us the way".Furthermore it starts to become
clear to more and more people that attempts to reform education,
flexibilise labour markets,attack social security systems are policies
that regional governments would like and will try to impose on the
whole region that is called European Union.It is therefore important
to build links between our movements and work on forming a
common resistance platform,a common resistance consciousness.In
their attempt to attack our lives they should remember that they will
find us in their way.

For further communication contact vianto@riseup.net
* PGA is an antiauthoritarian anticapitalist direct action network
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