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international bordercamp strasbourg

Project: implementation of a Website/Internet portal concerning repression.

this item is available in: [en] [fr]

12.Jul.02 - Below a "beginning of proposition of project" which can interest:
• people absolutely interested in anti-repression
• unconfirmed and as well confirmed websurfer and webmasteureuses as well,
• all the others
This project is in possible link with legal work, social control, the workshop web/media. We simply give the information; the idea would be that if people wants it, we can find time to discuss about it during the camp, redefine and develop the project etc. Several persons have already said that they were interested for such discussion.

"Repression, still and always: idea of new useful tool (owl)"


Do we need to remind it? In last years, we observe an outbreak of social control measures and repression which are not better than in the seventies. September 11th events confirms being itself an ideal alibi to justify the bigbrother-methods and liberty-restraining laws.
In reaction to the shock treatments (security fashion, the last repression of the "anti-globalisation" and social movements), militant networks seem for a few months to take an increased interest in subjects which constitute too often the depressing side of their fights: social control, criminalisation of social movements and misery, etc.

Many initiatives go in this direction.
To take only some examples in France, let us evoke: "collectif contre la dérive" (Parisian lawyers, november 2001) ; the "réseau contre la haine" (i.e. network against hate, Paris, November 2001) ; the international inquiry commission "droits fondamentaux et mondialisation" (i.e. basic rights and globalisation European lawyers, December 2001) ; "la semaine d'insoumission et de désobéissance sociale" (i.e. unsubmission and civil disobedience week, Paris, mars 2002) ; the FRAP ("festival de résistance à l'agression policière" i.e. police brutality resistance festival ; Guingamp, mars 2002) ; weekend/rencontre contre les prisons (i.e. meeting against prison, Paris, February 2002), semaine contre les lois sécuritaire (i.e. week against security laws, Paris - Rennes, April 2002) ; the camp "no border, no nation" (Strasbourg, July 2002), etc., without mentioning the great deal of articles, calls, sites, special reports about security issues and so on.

.. and what does not work out

This reaction gives room to report our "delay" in regard to the repressive organisms:
• each collective, each organisation suffers local and/or inside repression, and end up doing similar stuff in its little corner. Moreover a lot of groups and collectives investigate specific subjects (video-monitoring, private data processing, work on legal texts, criminalisation of specific groups, prison, etc.) for a long time, but without real will or/and capacity of diffusion and exchange.
• The work "anti-repression" is often restricted to its reactive aspect, tiring, defensive, large in time, in energy and in money, appropriate to make us forget our objectives, and so on.
• as there is not enough links between the different fields of the social struggle, not only is it difficult to earn from other experiences, to exchange methods of action and defence, to build solidarities, but it remains almost impossible to express criticisms and more global answers, which would open a field of offensive struggles against the totalitarian logic.
• Let us add that the subdivision is also measurable in the transnational level (difficulty crossing the legal and state borders , the linguistic boundaries [especially for French!]), while the authorities move in this domain at giant steps.

The project and its utility:

The issue would be to elaborate a tool which facilitates connections and allows to rationalise the treatment of information relative to repression. to make on internet a specific space that would make possible the following functions:
Rationalisation / sorting of the information, thanks to specific resources offered, to facilitate :
• stepping and analysis of cases,
• elaboration of more solid and collective defences (the collectivisation of defence is the politicisation of the debates)
• theoretical developments aiming to highlight transverse / global strategies. (social movements/misery criminalization ; transversalism of methods and repressive objectives; logics of control; internationalisation of methods and repressive means, etc.)
• To clean our activist lists of discussion (information about which we often do not know too much what to do).

Some hints:

• Establish separate topics: discussions; thorough texts; press release; legal reports publication; information / testimonies about the repressive events connected to specific situations (activist actions, demonstrations, etc.); texts of law; decision of justice; resources contacts; defence contacts; securisation of our data and actions; etc.
• Propose typical index cards, to write testimonies and legal experiences, to classify cases and sort out the info, in brief, not to end up with only lyric or telegraphic testimonies which are too difficult to analyse.

Notice 1:

In view of the multitude of specialised sites this proposition could be seen as particularly ambitious and epetitive, ( ; fortress Europe; ; ;; ; without mentioning alternative news agencies etc.)
• The idea is less to redo the job already done by others on specialised websites than to reference them and to rationalise the militant information which does not pass through them.
• these propositions are only hints to show the state of mind in which this site can be elaborated, knowing that certain topics could be reduced to simple links towards existing sites. It is up to those who will work on this project to limit it in order to make it something realist and operating. • It is obviously totally essential to try to elaborate this project in association with the existing sites, to point out what still is missing in these and to keep in mind the need of complementarity.
• It is possible (desirable?) to power up such a project by the one or some of them
• The proposition which seems original, and could turn out useful, is the elaboration of these typical index cards, and the opening resource centres on a model which can be diffused in a rather wide range (cf. the extension of indymedia, on the basis of a platform put at disposition on the Webnet by its designers).

Notice 2:

We could easily object that this project means systematic recording of information, which is absolutely dangerous.
• Questions of safety/security and the paranoia are not secondary, and it is indeed an issue to clarify the limits of such a tool and the means to secure it ( ethic code, encrypt, responsibility, etc.).
• this tool itself can be useful to monitor and secure the information, indeed our uses of internet are too often mindless, because of our misunderstanding of it.
Besides saturating our networks with unrelenting information, it is not rare that we make a mistake about addressees and that our lack of method puts us in danger. It stays that information always fuses.
If it is still a question of communication, let us sharpen our instruments...

• This project is to my mind one of the mean available to us to link militant networks about repression.
• to elaborate a tool which is useful for all = to collect cases and points of view which will make analysis easier, solidarities and transverse actions.
• help all people to spare time, money and energy In brief, to surf on dynamic potentials and feed it with extra fun tools (hé hé). we will see what will work out of this basis.

Who is going to elaborate this project?

It seems particularly important to speak about it around a table to imagine very concretely how to structure such a space. The required skills are: mastery of the computer tool and webdesigning; knowledge/implication on the subjects of repression (knowledge of gaps, and needs; capacity of description of events; relative mastery of legal and legislative environment and their formal requirements/limits; mix of various legal realities; and especially a height motivation!

• Who is going to accommodate this / this page/s? especially in the perspective of its extension in other countries (different legal systems, or linguistic zones, or...?) One hint would be indymédia (remains to solve the problem of internal quarrels; at least, not in France at the moment..)

• Who is going to update these pages? After the problem of willingness, it is also a problem of time, competence and centralisation of the control / censorship of information. To answer this last question, it seems to me that it might be better to find volunteers if this proposal lives. That is why we suggest setting up a workgroup, still without a clear view of the responsibilities to assume after the setting up of the project.