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Friday, August 21, 2009

"Freedom of Speech" demo banned

In the line of the latest fascist developments in the Basque Country, a demonstration demanding freedom of speech that will take place today has been forbidden by the Spanish tribunals.

The fascist unelected government of the Western Basque Country, ironically, says that the people calling to the demonstration are "intolerant" and has the shamelessness to say that, if they "keep the challenge it will be proven once again that what they want is confrontation and the opportune measures will be taken to avoid it". What basically means that they will throw the cops against the demonstrators no matter how many victims they cause (I know it sounds like they will avoid doing precisely that but they are that type of shameless hypocrites: peaceful demonstration is violence, police brutality is peace... could be an Orwellian slogan indeed, in the line of "war is peace, freedom is slavery").

In the same line, yesterday, police intervened against the txosnak (festive bars of the kompartsak, festive groups that are the backbone of the fiestas) at Bilbao, removing all photos of Basque prisoners and a totally unrelated item: a banner in solidarity with the Gaztexte, the popular social center. The resistence was peaceful: the repressive action was countered by music with love messages for each of the prisoners and people kept dancing in spite of the tension. Booing, whistling and cries of "go to Madrid" got the policemen stressed and they beat some people (this "detail" has not been broadcasted on TV). Eventually they retired under cries of "keep on, keep on... until you reach Madrid".

Masked riot policemen (known as beltzak: the black ones) deployed at the txosnak.

As fascist pressure mounts up, it has also been known that a municipal worker of Orkoien found his work van grafittied with fascist symbols and death threats. Watch out the "democrats" are coming!

Reads: caution Julio, look under (meaning there could be a bomb)

Let's see what happens today but, considering what we saw in Donostia last week, I expect a brutal intervention against the txosnak with many injured and arrested (hopefully there will be no deaths but you never know) and the interruption of the fiestas, as it happened once in the early 80s.

Source Gara (links in text).

Update: the demonstration was officially un-called at the police station and in a press release. In spite of it three spontaneous demonstrations took place: one was rapidly smashed by the police causing some riots, another, the original one, was prevented by masses of cops and finally a third one managed to walk through Autonomia street, one of the main arteries of Bilbao, gathering thousands and managing to reach the usual destination at the Arenal. At least three people have been arrested an it's reported huge police deployement in the city. I can hear a helicopter as I write this. Sources: Gara and verbal reports.


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