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(en) Holland - Victory for the Entwoods!

From GroenFront!|EarthFirst!NL support group <listfilter@groenfront.nl>
Date Fri, 7 Nov 2003 21:17:23 +0100 (CET)

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Entwoods, direct action in the Netherlands: Victory for the moment!!!
The high administrative court of holland has recently decided to
stamp the destructive plans for the Entwoods invalid. On the planning
maps, the height of the buildings was not indicated, an extremely
minor error the court not commonly takes into reckoning - but this
time there was a lot of pressure. The eco warriors guarding the
forest since June this year have decided not to leave the forest for
the moment, as their opponent, themepark the Efteling, has not
publicly decided how to respond to the current situation yet. In any
case, if they want to continue building hotels for 3500 people
destroying a beautiful forest, they will have to restart the planning
process, meaning a very costly delay of 1.5-2 years. Earlier
procedures and the occupation of the woods by activist already
increased time and cost of their planned destruction.
But the site is still there and this may be your last chance to check it out!!!

Earlier article:

Fairytales rage in the Netherlands

June 30 this year GroenFront! (Green Front) squatted a forest in the
south of the Netherlands. It borders on attraction park the
'Efteling'. The Efteling wants to build hotel appartments for around
3600 people in the squatted forest, that we named the Entenwoud
(Entwoods). They say they need to grow to survive. We say only more
forest will let us survive.

We started our network in 1995 based on the expectations we'd gotten
from the successes at the anti-roads movement in England. After
getting people together with some small scale direct action against
the many roadbuilding and -expansion projects in the Netherlands,
which is, seriously, the heart of distribution and construction
industry in Europe, we started a protest site against expansion of
the Amsterdam port. Although we lost, after several evictions and
reoccupations the port was built, but a movement was born. Public
opinion was with us, but we learned the hard way it was not important
at all. Public opinion is hardly worth a fuck for the construction
But we were ambitious and chose the largest construction project in
the country. We would confront evil, upfront! And again public
support was mad. After a very intense three year campaign of direct
action against one of the largest and deimed most important
infrastructure projects in Europe, the Betuwe-line, connecting
Rotterdam (the world's largest port) and the Ruhr (Europe's largest
industrial area, in Germany), all our strength was drained. Though
morally we were victorious (if something like morality might
exist...) , and though of three branches of the line were scrapped,
the project has not been stopped. Actions had hit a beating hart of
the system, which doesn't obey any laws (including that of the
market...) and year long occupations of to-be-destroyed houses,
millions of euro eviction costs, ongoing construction site
occupations, sabotage, an image of progress absolutely destroyed, it
didn't matter. This freight railline must be built.
The thing we did achieve was that now nobody in the vicinity of that
project has any faith at all anymore in democracy or the dutch state.
Only nihilism rules for people who's living has been destroyed.
We decided we needed a project we could defeat. We deemed a
perspective of victory, on the short term, in the near future, vital.
So we chose a private project worth about 50 million (in contrast to
the 8 billion euro's of the Betuweline...). The forest is beautiful,
it is 150 years old (an age and a half in dutch terms... pretty much
the max there is, the country is ravaged).

The attraction park the Efteling, the largest of the country, has
been family business and fairly green and friendly up to the mid
nineties. After that the new board has aimed for hardcore
commercialisation. They felt they needed to compete with parks in
Belgium and Germany, on what grounds nobody really knows. They built
a big roller coaster first, being messy with environmental
regulations but who cares, they've got the local government in their
pocket. Now they've decided on the 'Droomrijk', a dream kingdom, for
people to stay several days and go to their attractions, eat their
food and drink their coca cola sponsored drinks, buy all their props
and make them rich, and have a nice escapist time.
The park makes money out of escapism. Their attractions are based on
nice homely fairy tales, on times of long forgotten turned 'real' in
the Efteling. This is why they insist on their appartments being
built in an old forest, of which a quarter is being cut down. They
want to build medieval castles, dream like landhouses etc. and they
need nature to make them money.
We have made our own fortresses in the forest, under-tunnelled and
protected by treehuts. We will stay there untill there is no more
theat to the forest.

This is what makes our resistance so important. We don't want people
to escape their horrible, completely urbanised, sterilised and
planned, existence. It needs to be faced and destroyed and exchanged
for real life where people realise they are part of nature again.
But this is what makes the protest very difficult. We want to stop
the project. But because people like fairy tales more then their dull
lives, the attraction park has much sympathy. And we like the fairy
tales more then the 'real life' people lead in their tedious
existence. We try to live a fairy tale and make it real in the
Entwoods. It is quite understandable for people to visit a fairy
tale, even though incorporated by civilisation. Uncivilised behaviour
incorporated, how to deal with it?

We feel we need to make a victory, after tedious campaigns of the
last six years by eco anarchists in holland. A small victory might
change passive resistance into active for many. Do we denounche the
park *an sich* or not? We have chosen to focus, in our critique, on
why the fuck everything that might have some value needs to grow, and
grow until the value is completely gone. E
We've presented ourselves as the latest 'attraction' of the Efteling.
We're still there after months. Our eviction will cost millions and
they will pay. The only thing they've said is they know we'll be back
again after that.
So if you're around, come around and make your dreams come true!

The Entwoods are on the N261 road Tilburg-Waalwijk in the south of
the Netherlands.
More info: http://ww.entenwoud.nl and http://www.groenfront.nl,
Or po box 85069, 3508 AB Utrecht, Netherlands



Vrienden van GroenFront! | EarthFirst! Netherlands Support Group

++ http://www.groenfront.nl ++
++ mailto:vrienden@groenfront.nl ++

PO BOX 85069 3508 AB Utrecht Netherlands
Voicemail/fax: +31 84 8666018
Giro 5434556 tnv Steungroep NVDA Utrecht ovv GroenFront!
POSTBANK IBAN NL59 PSTB 0005 4345 56

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