Posts tagged ‘indignados’

#indignados: The movement is still alive

[This is the last post from a series of four on the indignados movement in Spain in May and June 2011. To start from the beginning, click here and start reading at the bottom of the page]

The big Loreal ad is now naked... Protests have come to an end in Madrid's Puerta del Sol.

More than one month after the seeding rally on May, with the resulting four-week long camps now dismantled; after several crashes with the police, an election massively won by conservatives and, most importantly, several points of division among supporters, nobody could really know how the defiant 15M movement health status was.

But today it has been proved that it’s at it best. With rallies called at some 60 cities across Spain (Madrid has held six on its own!) some 350,000 indignados (“indignants”), as they are known after a book by Stéphane Hessel, have taken the streets. As usual, demands are focused on the cuts in social spending that governments are applying in an attempt to reduce the deficit caused by the rescuing of banks in 2008.

Attempts by conservative media to discredit the movement have been carried out to no avail, as users of social media sites have been quick to respond. The newspaper “La Gaceta” always use the word “illegal” after “indignants”, others  argue that demos are only being held because of the socialist defeat at the past elections, and others claim that protesters are in close relation to Basque terrorists. However, pacifism is one of the key points of the movement and, despite the size of the crowd, no violent episodes whatsoever have been registered today.

Indeed, political parties and traditional media don’t know how to handle a situation that is totally out of their control and that they don’t fully comprehend. We are facing a true revolution, a step forward in history that is being determined by the spread of new technologies and that will lead to a purer, more participative form of democracy.

They better join us soon or history will leave them behind.


[Click the picture for more images]

junio 19, 2011 at 3:43 pm Deja un comentario

#indignados: fall and rise and fall of a movement

The third week of protests in Sol starts under several points of criticisim. Shop owners argue that sales around the area are down by 80% due to the camp. Media is not paying as much attention as they used to on the first two weeks, and when they do they tend to focus on negative issues, such as the slowness of the assambleary decision taking process and the disagreement between supporters. Indeed, original supporters claim that Sol is going the wrong way, wasting too much effort on demands that are way beyond the original movement: feminisms, animal rights defenders, pro-Palestinian and Saharawi groups, gay and lesbian, 9/11 truth groups, etc. Furthermore, activities such as batukadas (massive brazilian-style bongo drumming), Tibetan bowl ceremonies, homeopaty and spirituality sessions, among others, are held regularly, all of which are fine, but don’t stick to the original spirit and make the camp look closer to a squat that to a wide popular movement. Disenchanted supporters claim for an end to the camp and such activities, and a return to the original demands and more blunt actions.

Nevertheless, since last week the camp is trying to spread to each district of Madrid, where weekly popular assambleary meetings are to be held. Although the success of the first one (last Saturday 28th May), Sol wants to make sure the gears are working fine before leaving the camp. Last Friday’s police’s brutal crush with protesters in Barcelona also gave new energies and a reason to stay (as a response, 25,000 people met on Barcelona that evening). And finally, a consensus on four key points to demand, and how to demand it, is being tried to agree.

Furthermore, protests are spreading timidly across Europe. On 30th May police cleared protesters in Paris’ Bastille. Greece is seeing massive demos everyday. As analysts say, “these revolutions are going to spread through the summer in Europe, and by the winter it’s going to go global”. Does Sol need to resist as an example?

mayo 31, 2011 at 3:42 pm 1 comentario

#indignados: the fight continues

Local and regional elections were held yesterday in Spain. Right-wing People’s Party swiped out the socialists everywhere. One of the claims of the protests, not to vote any of the two major parties, was clearly not assembled.

Two clear conclusions can be agreed:

  • Although it’s open to everyone, 15M is a purely left-wing movement. Conservatives have not joined in. Indeed, many right-wing media have criticised and manipulated information regarding the camps and the movement.
  • From now on, political fight is not going to be held inside parliaments and councils. They will now need to face directly the people, organised through social media and internet.

After a slight feeling of defeat, the conscience that our fight was now more important than ever overtook us. Camps, that were to be held originally only until yesterday, decided to remain until a consensus on demands was reached and a solid organisation was running, with the idea to spread the protests to every district in Spain and every city in Europe.

Europe needs to awake. We cannot be dominated anymore by the markets. We have made a stand, and now it’s on us to go beyond the pure dissatisfaction.

People of Europe, rise up!

mayo 23, 2011 at 3:40 pm Deja un comentario

#indignados: People have the power

The size of protests have been growing incredibly during this week. From the 50-some campers on Monday night, when they were cleared out by the police, to the 5000+ of Thursday evening (only in Sol).

But yesterday night (Friday 20th May) the response was amazing. Elections are held tomorrow (Sunday 22nd), and the movement have overshadowed all political propaganda during this week. The only news of politicians were on their opinion on the protests. So the “Commission for Elections” forbid all protests on Saturday on the grounds that “asking for responsible vote may alter the voting decision”. Remember that in Spain the day before elections no political propaganda can be held.

But this has only made anger rise. More than 25,000 people gathered in Sol yesterday night defying the ban, adding to a total of around 50,000 people throughout the country.

At midnight, when the ban started, in most cities and towns throughout Spain a minute of silence spread, waiting for the police to charge. It was followed a minute later by a tremendous shout of exaltation. We had won. Nothing can stop us now. People have the power.

Silent Scream at Zaragoza

[Click on image for more pictures]

mayo 21, 2011 at 3:38 pm Deja un comentario

The Spanish Revolution 2.0 is here

After last Sunday’s (15th May) demonstrations in more than 50 cities across Spain, people have started to take spontaneously the main squares of many cities on what is known as the “15M movement”. The biggest concentration is in Puerta del Sol (Madrid’s Trafalgar Square) were police crashed with protesters at 5:00am last Monday… Only to make it grow bigger! Tuesday saw 3000+ of us (as estimated by the police, real figure probably higher) concentrating there, and yesterday we were even more. And that’s only in Madrid, concentrations elsewhere are growing by the hour.

The organisation is amazing. Now Sol has its own kitchen, water supply, press room, sickbay, nursery, art workshop, rubbish collection, space for debate, etc. People bring and share all sorts of supplies (food, medicines, materials to build stuff… ) with the volunteer-based organisation. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are given away at certain hours. Due to the high concentration of people, “roads” have been created with tape; outside them, resting areas are covered with cardboards. Alcohol is prohibited past a certain hour, as it’d be an excuse for the police to take on us… although I wonder how they can crush such a crowd!

And this is only the beginning.



[Click on image for more pictures]

mayo 19, 2011 at 3:37 pm 1 comentario


El autor

Anónimo García

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