(AA)El Acratador #52 - part 4 (Cast)

Luis Prat (prat@chem.ucsb.edu)
Wed, 1 May 1996 10:00:38 -0700


Lately from different pulpits, tribunes and communications media the current
party system (partyocracy) is being critiziced for kidnapping democracy, for
the lack of citizen's participation etc. They talk of regenerating democracy
and the participation by civil society in the decision making proccess.
claims and even from a more possibilist point of view we could even make
common cause in defense of direct democracy. But beware! behind these
beautiful words there's a poison pill.
Those who speak of a civil society do not talk about an organizing and
associative movement, social movements, unions, neighborhood and worker's
associations, consumer associations etc. They don't want the performance by
the man on the street, rather that the new directors be "independent" well
known figures. The civil society they want to sell us is that of the
oligarchies that are outside the political power: televangelists, bankers,
judges, academics, tycoons that faced with the wearing out of the political
party system want to take the reins of power. Civil society are the
Trevijano, Pedro J, Conde, Gil y Gil, Ruiz Mateos ... in the USA opposite
the bipartisan system this type of civil society is represented by
archmillionaire Ross Perot.
Some candidatures have these claims in their agendas (democratic
regeneration, citizen's participation, open lists, civil society, cut back
on the parties' power ...). One of them is Foro Democratico, headed by
ex-centrist E. Punset and financed by someone as honest and philanthropic as
Mario Conde. A similar program is proposed by Plataforma de los
Independientes de Espan~a (PIE). In the latest municipal elections the
candidature from this group in Madrid was headed by Matanzo, in Huesca it
was a franquist ex-councilman. Both ex-councilmen from PP (Partido Popular -
right wing party T.N.) had been expelled from this party for being ultra
reactionary. In Vilaseca (Tarragona) the candidature was composed of people
close to the well known catalonian ultra rightist Gomez Rovira.
Then there is Iniciativa por la Sociedad Civil (ISC) that publishes a paper
Iniciativa por la Libertad de Expresion (ILE) that tries to make a dent
especially in the Universities. Although they have very progressive
articles, it is financed by businessmen linked to Opus Dei and carries
advertisements for major multinational corporations. In Zaragoza this group
was coordinated by a Law professor that quickly went from being a habitual
presence in the November 20th (Franco's death) celebrations to being a
progressive. This group, among whose more visible heads you'll find Javier
Esteban (linked to Bases Autonomas - another right wing party T.N.) has
organized talks by republican Trevijano throughout the state. In one of
their issues they noted the italian Francesco Cossiga (Minister of the
Interior during the bloody repression of the "lead years" in the 70s, with
more than 10,000 political prisoners) as an example of honest and
incorruptible politician.
Related to this theme is the ultraliberal current that claims the title
"libertarian" (in english the words liberal and libertarian have similar
meaning) for example the Libertarian Party in the USA goes against the power
of the state and wants the smallest state possible, total abolishment of
taxation, total privatization of the public sector and total absence of
social aid and services (health, unemployment, retirement ...). The goal of
these "libertarians" of the right is to destroy the state to install a
savage capitalism. In Europe this current is testimonial, but both
conservatives and social democrats apply economic policies more and more
Watch out for these "desinterested" defenders of civil society and the
"right wing libertarians" since they only lead to personalism,
follow-the-leader-ism and populism. They're all recycled forms of
neofascism. If they fight against the power of the political parties is
because they don't want grass roots organizations, the system, the
bureaucracy that might control or limit the excessive personal power that
these self-nominated leaders of civil society want.



The prosecutor of Oviedo's court has asked for 73 years in prison for a
civil guard accused of sexually assaulting and raping 7 women.
A brasilian woman charged that she was raped in a Bilbo police station by 4
policemen after being illegaly arrested.


The feminist collective Mujeres Castellanas de Burgos asked for a boicott of
a group called Derrame Zerebral that spread anti abortion themes and label
the women that have abortions as "selfish assassins". Curious coincidence
with the most integrist catholicism.


Bilbo's Libertarian Youth (JJLL) has sent us a long letter to inform us of
the problems they are having with members of Herri Batasuna (basque party
T.N.) over the elections of March 3rd. JJLL-Bilbo pasted posters in favor of
abstention with the visible heads of the main political parties. The poster
team of H.B. covered these posters one by one, the libertarians were
insulted, threatened, endured anonimous phone calls and graffitti in their
local. JJLL remind us that in 1993 they took part, together with JARRAI and
HB, in a platform for the freedom of expression, denouncing the "idea
cleansing" practiced by the municipal street cleaning brigade who covered up
graffitti, posters and billboards.


In Marbella not everything is super rich people roasting in the sun, luxury
yatchs and a fascist and mafioso mayor. Recently a social center has been
created in this city and they tell us of the gathering they had this past
march against Gil's policies and the abuses perpetrated by the police in
Marbella, attended by over 200 people, although according to Gil there
weren't more than 12 from Marbella, a few from a nearby town (where his
party does not hold the mayor's office) and a gang of kids between 14 and 15
years old.
More than 100 charges of torture and ill treatment have been awarded to
Gil's police in only 5 years. The accusations are in large part from people
that have been stopped for simple traffic violations or for surfing outside
of the allowed hours and who have been beaten to a pulp, arrested,
threatened or vexed. This level of accusations for these circumstances is
much greater than that of the majority of the cities in the state and it is
assumed that they're only a part of the abuses carried out by a police force
that, according to Gil's very own words will be rewarded every time the
prosecutor initiates investigations against them for these reasons. Gil has
also prohibited the dissemination of pamphlets or leaflets and has dedicated
insults to the left and Marbella's young people such as slimy and lice-ridden.


On February 15 there was an antibullfight gathering in front of a portable
bullring in Elche (Alicante) where a bullfight took place. The police acted
without consideration against the peaceful act organized by
Comite-Antitauri, made up of people from several collectives, the people
gathered limited themselves to carrying two banners and singing
antibullfight slogans. The police charged against the demonstrators and
arrested two of them. Four activists had to be treated at the hospital and
have pressed charges. The police's performance has originated a great
polemic in the city and numerous associations, unions and parties (even
Socialist Youth) have denounced the events and have called for a clarification.


This month of April marks the 10th anniversary of the Chernobyl nuclear
disaster. To this date the exact number of people that died during the first
days is unknown and it's estimated at over 60,000 the number of liquidators
(people that worked in isolating the reactor and putting out the fire) that
have already died as a result of radioactivity. Another 100,000 could die in
the next few years and the rate of carcinogenic diseases among the
population that was near the plant at the moment the dome broke up is almost
50%. Even the grandchildren of the so called "Chernobyl children" could
continue to suffer the effects of radiation.
In spite of it, three of the plant's reactors continue to function and many
people have returned to the area and cultivate the land with concentrations
of radioactive strontium and iodine much higher than tolerable. Where will
the next "unfortunate accident" occur? Perhaps in Garon~a. This plant, like
the majority around the state, has a completely obsolete technology and is
located in an area of high population density right next to the Ebro river,
from where it takes water for its cooling, only 200 Km away from Zaragoza.
On saturday March 23rd 2,000 people demonstrated in Burgos against Garon~a
nuclear plant, on the 20th anniversary of its inaguration.


(UPA) In Oiartzun (Guipuzkoa), in answer to the arrest of several youths, on
February 28th several objects were thrown against the Batzoki (bar and
meeting place of the basque nationalist party PNV). At that moment several
vans of the Beltzas, anti-riot division of the ertzainas (basque police
T.N.), arrived with antiriot gear and entered a bar, harrassing and beating
the customers and throwing them out in the street to identify them. Once in
the street some clients asked for explanations and the badge number of the
Beltzas and as an answer they received blows with helmet-clad heads, blows
with clubs and kicks in the testicles. A municipal guard came to ask for an
explanation, getting the same treatment as the others, in addition to
insults such as "asshole, you're nothing, fucking little cop" directed at
the force he belongs to such as the major and other members of the municipal
At last they arrested the municipal guard and insumiso Xolomo Sorondo, who
was under search and capture, being then taken to their base in Orereta and
later to the emergency room to obtain medical assistance. On February 29th
Xolomo went to prison and the guard was released. There was a gathering in
Oiartzun which was disbanded by the police and Oiartzun Town Hall and its
workers filed charges at the ertzaina and at the courthouse against these
performances and there was a strike and lock-in at the Town Hall.


Three castillian youths, members of UPC and JRC have been released after
declaring on April 15th in the National Court. The three were charged with a
crime of "collaborating with an armed band" for the possession of several
letters from different political prisoners that were addressed to the
magazine _Castilla Libre_. The letters didn't have any criminal content but
were a denounciation of the prisoner's situation. In addition two others
from JRC had to declare in the National Court for alleged "injuries to the
king" as they were considered responsible for a poster in memory of the last
people executed in Burgos in which they reminded the world that Juan Carlos
I was a king imposed by Franco. You can no longer say the truth.


(UPA) Madrid's provincial court has ruled against the defense appeal in the
case of two young people sentenced in connection with incidents against the
municipal police in the summer of 1991 during a campaign of protest against
the eviction of the then okupied Centro Social Minuesa (see Acrat #49).
Pedro Luis Perez had been sentenced in a first trial in July 1995 to 1 year
in jail for attempts against authority and Luis Moles to 1 year for attempts
against authority and 2 years, 4 months and 1 day for injuries.
The ruling by the Provincial Court upholds the sentences of 1 year for
attempt for Pedro and Luis but reduces Luis' sentence for injuries to 1 year.
The events go back to august 1991 when three people complained of having
been beaten by the police when they were hanging a banner in Puerta de
Toledo. Hours later the municipal police went to C.S. Minuesa, beating
people who were distributing leaflets and arresting Pedro and Luis. At the
beginning the trial was for misdemeanors and was suspended several times as
the police did not show up. In another trial, four municipals were sentenced
to 5 days and 100,000 ptas in damages to one of the arrestees for
aggressions. Two and a half years later in a new hearing a municipal
policeman appears with a medical report that says he lost 10 teeth when a
bench was hurled at him. The court reassesed the facts and it became a
felony. The court has to decide whether the defendants have to go to prison
or get conditional liberty.

@@@@@@@@@@ ****
* /\ *
Luis J. Prat * /__\ *
* / \ *
University of California * *
Chemistry Dept. ****
Santa Barbara CA 93106
(805) 893-3295
(805) 893-4120 FAX

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