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MIAMI -- (November 27, 2003) The Dade County Women's Detention Center prisoners express their solidarity with the protesters of the FTAA. Many of the conditions the protesters found in the jail and detention centers, however horrific, are just examples of what we live with every day. There are many health code and civil right violations in the Dade County jail system. The women prisoners would like the following conditions to be addressed immediately:
1) There is black mold in our showers that cause rashes and breathing problems.
2) There are large amounts of bugs in our cells and in our showers.
3) The food is often in terrible condition, sometimes even rotting.
MIAMI, Nov. 24 - We were loading our video equipment into the trunk of our car when a fleet of bicycle cops sped up and formed a semi-circle around us. The lead cop was none other than Miami Police Chief John Timoney. The former Police Commissioner of Philadelphia Timoney has a reputation for brutality and hatred of protesters of any kind. He calls them punks," "knuckleheads" and a whole slew of expletives. He coordinated the brutal police response to the mass-protests at the Republican National Convention in Philadelphia in 2000. After a brief stint in the private sector, Timoney took the post of Miami police chief as part of Mayor Manny Diaz's efforts to "clean up the department."
We had watched him the night before on the local news in Miami praising his men for the restraint they had shown in the face of violent anarchists intent on destroying the city. In reality, the tens of thousands who gathered in Miami to protest the ministerial meetings of the Free Trade Area of the Americas summit were seeking to peacefully demonstrate against what they consider to be a deadly expansion of NAFTA and US-led policies of free trade. There were environmental groups, labor unions, indigenous activists from across the hemisphere, church groups, grassroots organizations, students and many others in the streets. What they encountered as they assembled outside the gates to the building housing the FTAA talks was nothing short of a police riot. It only took a few hours last Thursday before downtown Miami looked like a city under martial law. [ Read more... ]
USWA Calls for Congressional Investigation into Police-State Assaults in Miami
Citing "countless instances of humiliating repression in which the Miami police force disgraced itself," Gerard said that Miami police chief John Timoney should be fired, all charges against peaceful demonstrators should be dropped, and a Congressional investigation into the Miami police department's systematic repression should immediately be launched. "To do less would be to endorse homeland repression in the guise of homeland security," Gerard's letter concluded. [ Read more... ]
Help spread the word about Miami with this indymedia news sheet
Hi all--below is my report from yesterday in Miami and some breaking news from today, and below that, our appeal for help and solidarity. Please pass it along--right this moment our friends are in jail, facing brutality and torture, and we need your help! Thanks, Starhawk
Miami 11/21/03 Bitter Beauty
But if we only stand together, in solidarity and love, we can withstand anything they throw at us. We are one movement, a movement of life, putting down roots and unfurling leaves, and we can and must continue to grow. This week we have seen the possibility of love unfolding in hostile soil. Help us nurture that love and keep it alive.
Word from Miami Activist Defense
The FTAA protests in miami are a good example of why ALL Americans (North, Central, & South) should recognize what they are up against - An autocratically imposed mechanism( to accelerate transfer of wealth from many to a few) that has been designed by a few unresponsive, unelected people; a mechanism that will be enforced and protected with violent force by existing quasi-legitamite government entities, while those same government entities will lie about the mechanism as freely as they lie to silence opposition.
As top trade officials from 34 nations negotiated the extention of the "free trade" agreements binding North America to the rest of the continent, protesters, also in Miami, Florida, took to the streets in a massive display of opposition to the proposed Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA) pact. The demonstrations, ranging from civil disobedience to a large permitted march organized by the AFL-CIO, were met with police intimidation, unlawful restriction of the right to protest, and violence.
Beginning on Wednesday, when 9 people were arrested by undercover officers while walking down the street, the police began a strategy of random arrests and confiscation of legal possessions of those who fit what the police believe to be the demonstrator "profile". During protests today, that tactic expanded as the police violently apprehended march participants and dragged them behind police lines. Often these officers were dressed in civilian clothes, or even dressed as demonstrators. Seven people living in an abandoned house were arrested, as the police declared that their bicycle tubes were in fact sling shot weapons, despite no evidence to support that claim. [ Read more... ]
Solidarity Statement of SOA, FTAA & Bush Protests
This week George W. Bush faces a week of intense, non-stop protests. But you would never realize the importance or significance of these events if you relied on the corporate media or even the so called "alternative" or "progressive" media.
Bush and his administration faces a week of protest, first in the UK and then in Miami. To get the news as it happens, unfiltered by corporate editors and journalists, and untampered by money, follow http://www.indymedia.org.uk/ and http://www.indymedia.org.uk/ and link to www.ftaaimc.org.
On November 17, 2003, in solidarity with those in Miami and around the world protesting the Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA), the Lewis and Clark Organization for Peace and Politics and the Campus Greens held a Symposium on the harmful effects of free trade. Two speakers, Martin Hart-Landsberg, professor of economics at Lewis and Clark, and Barbara Dudley, professor of Political Science at Portland State University gave presentations on the FTAA and then took questions.
On Saturday, Nov 15, five activists (including two from the Pagan cluster) were arrested in Miami for the crime of leafletting, that is, peaceful organizing for the upcoming anti-FTAA mobilization. Urgent support action is needed.
Please contact Mayor Manuel A. Diaz ("Manny") and City Attorney Alejandro Vilarello ASAP. Briefly and strongly, let them know that...
* pre-emptive arrest of dissenters must stop right now;
* the charges against these five people are without merit and should be dropped immediately;
* the City of Miami is expected to behave like a democracy!
Seven days before the mass march and Direct Action against the FTAA (Free Trade Area of the Americas) the city of Miami is bustling. The police are mobilizing against protestors, while activists mobilize against the FTAA.
The convergence space is a vibrant mix of diverse peoples setting up aid for those converging in Miami. There are several working groups, including housing, food, legal, and action medical/wellness, set up to make sure that all needs are covered. The FTAA-Miami IMC space is also located in the Convergence Center.
Today, November 13, the "Protest Ordinance" passed unanimously, giving the police a supposed upperhand. However, their trainings have focused on the things that they have made illegal, and the global justice movement has creativity in their pocket. The police may be facing tactics that they have never trained for.
Local, grassroots groups representing communities of color have been taking an active role in resisting corporate globalization. The Root Cause is releasing a Community Impact Report, outlining the impacts of free trade policies on poor communities and communities of color in South Florida.
Overall, the air is buzzing with excitement. New people arrive everyday and immerse themselves in organizing, learning new things and meeting new people working to create a wonderful community. Florida activists have set up a Free Carnival Area of the Americas, building puppets for the protests and using education, art, and action to create positive change. Two streaming IMC radio projects have been set up, and print and video working groups are also active.
Many people associated with Indymedia are preparing to cover the FTAA/ALCA Ministerial meeting in Miami this coming November. Several work groups have been formed to coordinate different aspects of our effort. Since Indymedia is an all volunteer collective, to cover this historic moment in history, we are in need of funds to pay for the costs of computer, video and web radio hardware, Internet access and a public convergence space.
Please help us out by making a tax-deductible online donation of any amount, using your Visa, Mastercard, American Express or Bank debit card. You have two options:
Browse to the new FTAA Indymedia site
Go Directly to Donate Site
Report from Chicago FTAA Consulta
The ordinance, which will take effect when passed and expire on Thursday, Nov. 27, is clearly aimed at stifling the voices of the tens of thousands of people - students, union members, activists, peasant farmers and many other types of individuals - from around the Americas and the world who will be coming to South Florida to protest at the FTAA (Free Trade Area of the Americas) meeting to be held from Nov. 17-21 in Miami.
It's important that concerned citizens immediately contact Miami city officials to voice their opposition to this draconian, unconstitutional measure.Tell them you're contacting them to express your opposition to this ordinance which strips away free speech rights - refer to it the parades and demonstrations ordinance; if they ask what you mean, tell them it's item J-O3-772 on the Sept. 25 City Commission agenda, which would add section 6.1 to Chapter 54 of the City of Miami municipal code
ILWU Local 5 Strike Fund Benefit: Rock Out to Walk Out
From the open publishing newswire: What: Strike Fund Benefit: Rock Out to Walk Out (all ages show) Where: Disjecta (116 NE Russell) When: Friday April 18th 8-midnight Who: Performances by: ConSOLIDated, Crack City Rockers, Ma Ford, The Mouse that Roared, The Incredible Kid and DJ Anjali, Pleasure Holiday, Sonsa dn Lovers, Kevin Sampsell, and Steffen Silvis How Much: $5 at the door. There will be drinks (beer, wine, soda) and food for sale
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FTAA(miami) anti-capitalist consulta
From the open publishing newswire: This is a call for an anti-capitalist coordinating/planning meeting to begin preparations for actions against the FTAA ministerial meeting being held in Miami, Florida on November 20-22, 2003. We hope that this consulta will be an opportunity to build a broad based, diverse anti-capitalist response to the ministerial. Within the framework of creative militant action we hope to create new models of resistance that strengthen and revitalize our anti-capitalist/anti-authoritarian community.
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Bush Attacking the Great Divide!
From the open publishing newswire: The Great Divide - Southern Wyoming's Vast Desert Lands The BLM's Great Divide area takes in 3.5 million acres of public land stretching across southern Wyoming, a vast and windswept landscape that includes half of the Red Desert. Wildlands with sculpted badlands, an island mountain range with untouched lodgepole pine forests, and the largest active sand dune field in North America all fall within the Great Divide. The area also holds important habitats for wild horses, elk and rare or sensitive animals such as ferruginous hawks, mountain plovers, and black-footed ferrets.
We Have a Chance to Save these Wild Wide-Open Desert Lands The Bush Administration and the BLM are revising the Great Divide's Management Plan. While the administration's goal is to ramp up drilling, they have a responsibility to protect the region's irreplaceable wildlife and landscapes. So each of us, as American citizens and partial owners of these lands, now has a job to pressure the BLM to uphold this responsibility.
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Administration gutting NF Management Act-- Comment s Due April 4!
From the open publishing newswire: This Bush Administration proposal to gut the National Forest Management Act , if implemented, will lead to the widespread removal of environmental protections, as well as severely restricting public input. The deadline for comments was extended to April 4! Sample letters can be cut and pasted-- this is really nasty-- many times they have tried to get this through over the years... Please at least email by going to the website.
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