07.08.2002 - Hamburger Vorbereitungskreis
The loss of some individual rights of freedom which were taken for granted, the handling of social security systems, the extension of repressive state organs, an intensified attack of exploitation on all social levels, the project "Fortress Europe" , military solutions of conflicts, in brief: a society in which it gradually becomes a rule to mostly produce exclusions in order to exclude " the others", e.g. refugees, unemployed, junkies of whatever: We are not ready to put up with this shit. Nobody has the right to pester this world with damn small-mindedness and order-loving violence. We will meet in Hamburg in mid-August for an action camp in order to sound out the strong old and new men and women and to show them their way home. We call up everybody who opposes the conditions described above to join us. Like in the boarder camps we want to turn our camping ground into the testing field of new forms of action and analyses. Hamburg is a very appropriate place for this since presently, developments are visible which can serve as examples for other cities and regions. Our performance towards the exterior is as important for us as the "inner" processes. The camp "Land in Sight" , also considered as an attempt of creating an opposition society, offers lots of space to analyze the up-to-date social tendencies in Hamburg, Europe and on a worldwide scale and to become active practically and in theory with regard to the following questions:
Where are the differences between red-green and a right-wing popular politics, and are there any differences ?
A strange point of view seems to spread: it believes that the world is simple, and in a simple world there are only "the good ones" and "the evil ones ", "inside" and "outside", the "useful ones" and "the inconvenient ones". It believes that there are simple solutions: to get rid of "the evil ones", to lock out outsiders, to leaves "the others" to themselves, to expel the "inconvenient ones". Ŧ It has simple and clear positions: if someone died from emetics, he certainly had to hide something. If someone does not want to become rich, he should not be surprised at the lack of support. If you are not for it, you are against it. It has no bad intention, it simply canīt help it: it feels threatened and betrayed. It has good will, but everything is too much for it. The "outside" is not its cup of tea.
"Nobody has the right to obey." (Hanna Arendt)
"Beggars, dogs, rubbish" , read the headline of the Hamburger Abendblatt just one day after the electoral success of Ronald Barnabas Schill. It would be hard to define authoritarian formation more precisely. Law and order is essential!
While in the old German Federal Republic, homeless and poor people were still considered as victims of society who needed social integration and support (which was likewise a compulsion), under Schillīs rule it seems appropriate to talk about humans and rubbish in the same breath and to speak about them as "disposal problem". Certain groups do not any longer appear as social subjects with own, inalienable rights in the authoritarian-style society. The fact that their interests need to be discussed in society against those of others gradually disappears from the social concept of a majority population . Contradictions are considered as threat, as security problem which are handled by applying the methods of state repression.
To the voters of Schill & Company: Certainly you have the right to live a good life!
But you donīt have the rights to turn your fears of change into a standard for the whole universe.
Schill, Berlusconi, Pim Fortuyn, Jörg Haider, Le Pen and Rasmussen, there is hardly any European country where right wing populist politicians do not have spectacular electoral success. Despite their differences, all those parties have in common that they are grouped around one charismatic leader and that they consider themselves as anti- or protest party of the post-war party landscape which they regularly accuse of corruption. There are hardly any visible programmatic policies behind their exuberant polemics about security and order! These parties rather seem to be a collective vessel of fears, phobias and resentments which are expressed in all possible ways of fantasizing about "cleansing" with regard to humans, rubbish and street poles alike.
Until recently the needs were covered by the right margins of the popular parties and the extreme right wing parties (DVU, Rep) The right wing populist parties differ from them, however. They do not follow the national policy" who is useful may stay", but they are all neo-liberal and continue the destruction of the social security systems vehemently.
Anti fascist parties who have turned against the national core of protest parties have so far failed regarding right wing populist parties. But also appealing and enlightening approaches relating to the post-war party arrangement have not succeeded. And who shall be attacked since Schill and Company are just the "pegs to hang on "?
"Security and law and order for the German fatherland" - this could be the up-to-date version of the so-called national anthem.
And- as if they would like to anticipate this modification- the smallest provincial towns compete in setting up citizen guards and observation cameras in public zones. Security alliances are being forged, denouncing is in fashion and what is considered a joke today ( "This toilet is observed by a video camera in you own interest") has become reality tomorrow. Security can never be attained. It is a field of politics of the self-fulfilling prophecies in which the capability to act maybe proved again and again. And in fact, the spiral of security seems to accelerate continuously. What causes man to allow someone to constantly observe him? Which fears cause people to give up their individual rights of freedom to such a breathtaking extent that the necessary measures exceeded the dimensions of a simple security package and needed to be packed into a second one? How far can we still speak about a consciousness for individual rights of freedom?
What shall we answer if people answer to the hint " You are being observed" : "That makes sense". ? What shall we do if exaggerated security controls are carried out in down-town and most people put up with it without even blinking? We need new forms of action!
In spring 2001, the number of newspaper reports about the Hamburg drug scene increased once again. Soon the daily pictures of black guys followed which were pulled down by several drug searchers.
The initially diffuse, interminable speeches of "Mr. Judge Merciless", Ronald Schill about security and order finally found their exploitable goal in the racially marked "criminals". When the red-green Senate saw all its hopes dashed, a refugee boat was entered by several hundred policemen in front of the specially invited press representatives in order to prove its capability of action. Alas, even attacking the refugees was insufficient in a time of escalating racist atmosphere to convince the voter that even the social democrats can really do the job. The Senator of the Interior was exchanged and a combined attack of the authorities of the Interior, Social Affairs and Foreigners against Africans in Hamburg was launched.
A part of this " security concept" was the use of emetics in late summer 2001, while the red-green Senate was still in power.
It is purely accidental that Achidi John was killed by this torture only in December, and the persons involved are aware of that: Roger Kusch (Senator of Justice) was allowed to state after the murder without counter-reactions: " We all knew that something like that could happen". A brief review of the readers' letters shows clearly that also the population was aware about a death through torture in their town. And they stood firmly behind the just elected "civil block".
But the authoritarian formation does not only break its way with the civil block. While countless women projects, drug institutions and social street workers are cut down (www.schlechter-streich.de), Hamburg affords the largest new prison of the republic in Billwerder and the employment of 700 new policemen and -women plus the re-introduction of closed homes. The message is clear: security and order instead of solidarity are the new guidelines of Hanseatic society .
Together with everybody who is opposed the above described conditions we want to exchange our experiences, analyses and resulting political guidelines. The camp in Hamburg shall offer enough time and space not only to exchange the experiences of the individuals and the groups but also to test what we heard, to exchange experiences with partial or total failure of politicians and to develop new things from the experiences.
Letīs not be fooled - there are enough reasons for a justified self-doubt: Do our intentions correspond to reality? Where do we hamper ourselves? What about our own resentments against "citizens" and "reformers"? What is missing for new practical approaches? How can liberation become practical nowadays?
The simple quiet life. The luxury of beautiful goods. The nightly excesses. The beauty of warm dribbling rain. Being horny from self-produced endorphins while dancing. The consciousness-enhancing drug of discussion. The happy excitement of calculated confrontation with power and its fools. The truth in wrong and right. The tickle of bearing and making productive contradictions.
Rummage through your action boxes. Report which actions have failed so far due to the real existing population (and how you explain that) and also about actions which caused a change or brought you closer to a society in which you want to live.
Specially in demand: the latest analyses and practices which might have their premiere in Hamburg and will make the eyes of other activists shine.
Instead of supervising this world, to "clean up" it and to forbid things we will turn it upside down. We will make these populists and their followers so dizzy that they wonīt know any longer what is outside and inside. And weīll have some fun!
Instead of resentments and the policy of fear, letīs set up a perspective
Letīs build up networks of local and global satisfactions of needs.
Then the motto will certainly apply : Land in sight!
The camp "Land in Sight" will take place in Hamburg* from 16-22 August, 2002.
Within the series "antiracist camping" it will be the final camp after the anti racist camp in Jena (12-19 July) and the "No border camp" in Strasbourg (19-28 July.) *
Some 2 weeks before the camp, the camp office can be reached under tel.
040-39 90 69 83 or via e-mail at: