From July 12th till July 19th 2002 the 5th Antiracist No-Border-Camp will
take place in Jena/Thüringen. We will honor Jena with our one week´s visit in
order to attack - theoretically and practically - the racist conditions for
the 5th time now.
On the schedule are confrontative actions, discussions on perspectives of
antiracist and radical left politics, dealing with different life-realities,
their relation to societal power relations and last but not least the joint
organisation of camp everyday life. It will be "Reclaim the highway" after the camp, as a convoy will start out from Jena to Strasbourg to the international No-Border-Camp.
After last year´s camp in the "western metropolis", in the immediate
surroundings of the Frankfurt airport, this year the camp will return to the
"eastern province". "Aiming at inner borders", this slogan, created for Frankfurt,
will still be valid: Because one focus of the activities in Thüringen will be
the everyday isolation and exclusion of refugees, their precarious life
situation in the so called homes and the continuous racist controlls - mostly
based on the so called "Residenzpflicht" residential restriction. Especially in
the rural Thüringen with its relatively homogenous, "mehrheitsdeutscher"
(hegemonial german) population the densitiy of control and the isolation is more
repressive compared to the metropolitan areas, which have a longer history of
migration, and therefore offer at least a relative degree of protecion. The
normality of refugees´ and migrants´ isolation, criminalisation and
marginalisation should be broken and confronted with our opposition for one week. Aims
of our intervention will be the exclusion from human rights such as freedom
of movement and the right on political activism, everyday´s symbolical and
physical violence against refugees and migrants as well as the exclusion from
Of course we won´t lose sight of the racist conditions in general, since for
us racism is not reduced on state restrictions. Importantly, there is a
mutual dependancy of stately and societal racism that is fundamental for the
creation of the racist hegemony, i.e. the condition in which racist patterns of
perception and action meet so much approval and so few opposition; that a
fine-meshed racist net on the individual, structural and state level is woven.
This is visible in various forms:
Inactivity on the side of passengers and air crew in the case of
deportations on scheduled flights, petition campaigns against dual citizenship,
denunctiations at the border, racist discrimination at the housing and labour market,
dependancy of the residential status on german marriage partners and, often
connected, domestic relations of power and violence, especially for women.
Another element of this racist net is the connection of racist
classifications with the categorisation of people according to their usability in the
frame of the so called immigration debate. With the new immigration law the GFR
(German Federal Republic) sets an european example for the combination of
selection of migrants according to criteria of usability and simultaneous closing
of the borders. The regulation of work migration is oriented towards
economic, meaning capitalistic, requirements. When needed Some receive a strictly
temporary residence permit with various restrictive conditions. For the Others
entry or the reception of a secure status of residence is rendered even more
impossible than now: so called exit centers (Ausreisezentren) are planned
(which equals the expansion of remand pending deportation (Abschiebehaft)),
toleration (Duldung) will be abolished, political asylum will be only temporary
i.e. permanent menace of deportation in form of continuing reexaminations and
so on. The consequence of this politics is an increased illegalisation of
migrants, which are rendered even more exploitable by this.
The decision for Thüringen for this year´s camp ist to be seen as a step to
break the dominance of white, majoritarian German antiracists, to promote
antiracist transidentitarian organisation in cooperation with selforganised
On the one hand we do not want ot neglect the different backgrounds of
experience, as refugees, german whites and migrants are exposed to different
circumstances due to the racist conditions. On the other hand, we do not want to
simply accept the different identities that are co-created by this process.
Because, as mentioned, the racist conditions, i.e. racist in- and exclusion
mechanisms are responsible for these circumstances. What is important, is to
attack the walls of identity, to seek for mutually overlapping interests, to
look, where common political work can open up spaces – and this far away from
instrumentalisation ( be it charity, paternalistic, or by projection...). This
means, we try to do our best this year to reach a higher level of equality in
the preparation and organisation of the camp.
Topics could be distances (and communities) between refugees and nonrefugees
as well as the continuation of the debate about the crossing of racism and
sexism that was intensified on the last camp in Frankfurt/Main.
At the same time the decision for Thüringen picks up the campaign "for free
movement" against residential restriction/Residenzpflicht and for equal
rights of refugees and migrants. The abolition of Residenzpflicht is part of the
base for a more equal political cooperation between majoritarian Germans and
refugees. As such it is to be seen in context of the resistance against inner
borders and globally inequally distributed freedom of movement.
As in the past years we will dare to look over the plate´s rim/ we will
broaden our perspectives in order to grasp the crossing of different relations of
power and domination, to develop joint political strategies and to relate
the various fights. Starting points could be e.g. the antiracist fights in
Europe and worldwide:
Be it the destruction of the fences of the internment camp Woomera in
Australia and the support of the subsequent collective escape, be it the caravan
for the rights of refugees and migrants, the No-Border-Camps in
Bialystok/Krynki East-Poland, or Tarifa, Southern Spain, or the rennaissance of
anticapitalist politics in the lee of the so called antiglobalisation movement,
antisexist fights for the rights of illegalised female (sex-)workers, antifascism and
actions against antisemitism.
This variety is our advantage, since, like to the last camps, people from
different political spectrums will come to the camp, who should ask themselves
in what ways they can connect with each other. This year there will be a
focus on developing a more common communication instead of the often complained
about contactless coexistence of different groups or sub-scenes. Therefore we
will use a language understandable for as many people as possible, in order
to dismantle difficulties of communication and the ensuing hierarchies of
knowledge and power. That´s why we propose english as camp language or
bilinguality. Nevertheless we will try to organise translation for all lanuages needed.
Additionally the camp creates and offers manifold places and spaces to
communicate both inwards and outwards:
By planning common actions, almost at every time in the plenary tent, during
"reclaim the street" in the cities, at pink-silver happenings, during public
events and workshops, while chilling in the camp bar, at communication
guerrilla notifications, of course all around the info tent, while beheading
"Gartenzwerge", while cutting vegetables in the open air kitchen or wherever you
Hoping that, through coming together for these 8 days in summer, we can gain
greater capacity to act politically, build up networks and possibly take
back new approaches into the cities and regions, we invite all interested to
take part and be involved in the No-Border-Camp 2002. Inform yourselves and
others, publish the date, join the fight, mobilize, prepare own actions and
whatever you can think of!
History of the No-Border-Camps
In the summer of 1998 activists of "no one is illegal", autonomous and
antifascist groups called for a common action camp at the german-polish border
near Görlitz. About 200 people from east and west participated in actions
against a border regime, where a highly technified BGS (German border police) and
the eagerness for denunciation of a major part of the population combine to a
sometimes deadly manhunt against illegal migrants. Another major focus were
actions against regional (neo)fascist structures.
1999 a follow-up was organised in Zittau, at the border triangle of Germany,
Poland and Tschechia, in 2000 a third camp in Forst close to Cottbus. In the
last year for the first time the outer borders in the east were abandoned
for a siege of the German deportation airport no.1 at Frankfurt/Main. The camp
was increasingly organised and consisted of people from various spectrums as
well as self-organised refugee organisations and there was a temporary
participation of polish activists.