imc indymedia

Los Angeles Indymedia : Activist News

white themeblack themered themetheme help
About Us Contact Us Calendar Publish RSS
latest news
best of news




A-Infos Radio

Indymedia On Air

Dope-X-Resistance-LA List


IMC Network:

Original Cities africa: ambazonia canarias estrecho / madiaq kenya nigeria south africa canada: hamilton london, ontario maritimes montreal ontario ottawa quebec thunder bay vancouver victoria windsor winnipeg east asia: burma jakarta japan korea manila qc europe: abruzzo alacant andorra antwerpen armenia athens austria barcelona belarus belgium belgrade bristol brussels bulgaria calabria croatia cyprus emilia-romagna estrecho / madiaq euskal herria galiza germany grenoble hungary ireland istanbul italy la plana liege liguria lille linksunten lombardia london madrid malta marseille nantes napoli netherlands nice northern england norway oost-vlaanderen paris/Île-de-france patras piemonte poland portugal roma romania russia saint-petersburg scotland sverige switzerland thessaloniki torun toscana toulouse ukraine united kingdom valencia latin america: argentina bolivia chiapas chile chile sur cmi brasil colombia ecuador mexico peru puerto rico qollasuyu rosario santiago tijuana uruguay valparaiso venezuela venezuela oceania: adelaide aotearoa brisbane burma darwin jakarta manila melbourne perth qc sydney south asia: india mumbai united states: arizona arkansas asheville atlanta austin baltimore big muddy binghamton boston buffalo charlottesville chicago cleveland colorado columbus dc hawaii houston hudson mohawk kansas city la madison maine miami michigan milwaukee minneapolis/st. paul new hampshire new jersey new mexico new orleans north carolina north texas nyc oklahoma philadelphia pittsburgh portland richmond rochester rogue valley saint louis san diego san francisco san francisco bay area santa barbara santa cruz, ca sarasota seattle tampa bay tennessee urbana-champaign vermont western mass worcester west asia: armenia beirut israel palestine process: fbi/legal updates mailing lists process & imc docs tech volunteer projects: print radio satellite tv video regions: oceania united states topics: biotech

Surviving Cities africa: canada: quebec east asia: japan europe: athens barcelona belgium bristol brussels cyprus germany grenoble ireland istanbul lille linksunten nantes netherlands norway portugal united kingdom latin america: argentina cmi brasil rosario oceania: aotearoa united states: austin big muddy binghamton boston chicago columbus la michigan nyc portland rochester saint louis san diego san francisco bay area santa cruz, ca tennessee urbana-champaign worcester west asia: palestine process: fbi/legal updates process & imc docs projects: radio satellite tv
printable version - js reader version - view hidden posts - tags and related articles

The Battle of Genoa

by The Nation Monday, Jul. 23, 2001 at 5:46 PM

" Asesino, asesino," people screamed as the vehicle stopped a few yards away. A bald carabineri opened the door and glared at us.

Published on Saturday, July 21, 2001 in The Nation

The Battle of Genoa

by Walden Bello


The police van came careening down the Via Giovanni Tomaso Invrea, moving crazily from one side of the narrow street to the other in pursuit of protesters. I flattened myself against the wall, and it missed me by two feet. Another six inches and it would have mowed down the man in front of me. " Asesino, asesino," people screamed as the vehicle stopped a few yards away. A bald carabineri opened the door and glared at us.

Everything happened so quickly. Just twenty-five minutes before, at around 2:15 pm, a column of around 8,000-10,000 people, led by the famed specialists in civil disobedience the Tute Bianche, were marching down the Via Tolemaide, with marshalls using megaphones announcing, "This is a nonviolent march. We believe in nonviolence." The goal of the marchers was to reach the twenty-foot wall of iron that the authorities had erected around the Group of Eight meeting site at the Piazza Ducale about two kilometers away.

They never reached the wall. At the foot of the hill, at the intersection with Via Corsino, carabineri hidden in a small side street started firing tear gas in an unprovoked attack that scattered the advance ranks of the march where there were many reporters and television crews.

The Battle of Genoa had begun.

Throughout the next four hours, the battle unfolded in the narrow sidestreets and the small piazzas of the Corso Torino area, with the battle lines shifting constantly. The police would attack with teargas, vans and armored personnel carriers. The protesters would retreat, then come back with stones and bricks ripped from the pavement. Huge trash bins were turned over to serve as barricades. "Genova Libera! Genova Libera!" would erupt from the crowd everytime the police were forced back.

At 4:20 pm, I had my first glimpse of an injured man being carried away by the first aid personnel of the Tute Bianche. It was at around the same time that one person was shot dead by carabineri in the same vicinity. Ambulance sirens blared constantly. Later I would find out that about 150 people had been injured during the day--about fifty of them being members of the media.

I also learned later that there were acts of civil disobedience throughout the day, the most dramatic apparently being that of a woman from the so-called "Pink Bloc" of marchers who tried to scale the steel wall to place grappling hooks on it, only to be hosed down brutally by the police when she had got nearly to the top.

Unfortunately, the anarchists--the so-called "Black Bloc"--were also around. Despite efforts by mainstream demonstrators to dissuade them with dramatic pleas for nonviolence, they went about burning a couple of cars, including an Alfa Romeo. They also moved down Genoa's beautiful seafront drive, the Corso Italia, selectively breaking windows--breaking those of banks and car companies while leaving those of restaurants untouched. "Capitalism kills" with an anarchist logo alongside was painted on walls.

Many protesters were very upset about the antics of the few hundred anarchists in a global assembly of about 100,000 people. Fabio Bellini, a 25-year-old Genoan, told me: "It is right to demonstrate against the G-8. It's right to fight for a better world, and that's why I'm here. But I don't understand the window breaking. I'm sad for Genoa." Pam Foster, the coordinator of the Halifax Initiative in Canada, asked: "Why did the police go after peaceful demonstrators but take their time dealing with the anarchists?"

The antics of the Black Bloc were the subject of many passionate debates when the protesters streamed back to the convergence center at Piazza Kennedy at dusk. Observing one of these spontaneous arguments, Han Soeti of Indymedia-Belgium commented, "There are reports that instead of arresting anarchists, the police were escorting some of them to critical areas. I heard the same thing in Prague and Barcelona."

It is, however, for the new Italian Prime Minister, Silvio Berlusconi, that the protesters, both Italian and non-Italian, reserve their greatest anger. During the struggle at the Corso Torino, Gino Pierantoni, another Genoese, told me, "I don't know where you will find truth in this mess. But I am sure that a great part of the blame rests with this man, who really is incapable of leading this country." Berlusconi is regarded as having militarized the situation, going against the moves of the local government, which tried to accommodate the protest movement. A retired Italian general who headed the United Nations peacekeeping force in Beirut in the seventies summed up the feelings of many Italians when he commented that he did not know why Berlusconi assigned 20,000 carabineri to Genoa when he only needed 2500 troops to keep the peace in the whole of Beirut.

As in Seattle, Washington, DC, and Prague, organizers of what has been the biggest anti-globalization protest so far are worried that the street battles and the antics of the anarchists might overshadow the message that they wanted to deliver to the G-8. Over several months, the Genoa Social Forum was able to line up about 600 groups behind a pledge of non-violence. It also sponsored a week-long teach-in, involving international speakers, with topics ranging from "Who Needs Trade Liberalization?" to "Mechanisms for Global Democracy" to "Alternatives to Globalization." Among those who delivered talks were anti-globalization gurus Susan George, a critic of neoliberalism, and Jose Bove, better known as the man who dismantled a McDonalds restaurant.

The G-8, however, was deaf to the protests on the streets. While Berlusconi delivered a carefully crafted statement saying he was "saddened" by the death of the demonstrator, he also said it was not connected to the G-8. To add insult to injury, the G-8, on the evening on July 20, issued a statement in which it encouraged the launching of a new round of trade negotiations in Quatar. Opposition to a new round and the World Trade Organization was what had brought thousands of people from all over Europe and the world to Genoa.

Report this post as:

Listed below are the 10 latest comments of 6 posted about this article.
These comments are anonymously submitted by the website visitors.
Let It Ride sal ripple,seattle Monday, Jul. 23, 2001 at 6:11 PM
hk jh Monday, Jul. 23, 2001 at 6:13 PM
Back Off! Stizzo Monday, Jul. 23, 2001 at 6:47 PM
Back Off! Stizzo Monday, Jul. 23, 2001 at 6:47 PM
Stop the bickering please AK 47 Tuesday, Jul. 24, 2001 at 5:08 AM
how can you stop a tidal wave? mrfabulous Tuesday, Jul. 24, 2001 at 7:19 AM

Local News


lausd whistle blower A10 11:58PM

Website Upgrade A10 3:02AM

Help KCET and UCLA identify 60s-70s Chicano images A04 1:02PM

UCLA Luskin: Casting Youth Justice in a Different Light A02 11:58AM

Change Links April 2018 A01 11:27AM

Nuclear Shutdown News March 2018 M31 6:57PM

Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018! M29 7:00PM

Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018! M29 6:38PM

Spring 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert! M19 2:02PM

Anti-Eviction Mapping Project Shows Shocking Eviction Trends in L.A. M16 5:40PM

Steve Mnuchin video at UCLA released M15 12:34AM

Actress and Philanthropist Tanna Frederick Hosts Project Save Our Surf Beach Clean Ups M06 12:10PM

After Being Told He's 'Full of Sh*t' at School Event, Mnuchin Demands UCLA Suppress Video M02 11:44AM

Resolution of the Rent Strike in Boyle Heights M01 6:28PM

What Big Brother Knows About You and What You Can Do About It M01 3:30PM

Step Up As LAPD Chief Charlie Beck Steps Down F14 2:44PM

Our House Grief Support Center Hosts 9th Annual Run For Hope, April 29 F13 12:51PM

Don’t let this LA County Probation Department overhaul proposal sit on the shelf F13 11:04AM

Echo Park Residents Sue LA Over Controversial Development F12 8:51AM

Former Signal Hill police officer pleads guilty in road-rage incident in Irvine F09 10:25PM

Calif. Police Accused of 'Collusion' With Neo-Nazis After Release of Court Documents F09 7:14PM

Center for the Study of Political Graphics exhibit on Police Abuse posters F07 9:50AM

City Agrees to Settle Lawsuit Claiming Pasadena Police Officer Had His Sister Falsely Arre F04 3:17PM

Professor's Study Highlights Health Risks of Urban Oil Drilling F04 12:42PM

Claims paid involving Pasadena Police Department 2014 to present F04 10:52AM

Pasadenans - get your license plate reader records from police F03 11:11PM

LA Times Homicide Report F03 1:57PM

More Local News...

Other/Breaking News

What does the Quran Say About Islamic Dress?? A21 4:15PM

Biodiversité ou la nature privatisée A20 11:22AM

The Market is a Universal Totalitarian Religion A20 7:14AM

Book Available about Hispanics and US Civil War by National Park Service A19 5:52PM

The Shortwave Report 04/20/18 Listen Globally! A19 4:01PM

The Republican 'Prolife' Party Is the Party of War, Execution, and Bear Cub Murder A19 11:48AM

Neurogenèse involutive A18 9:21AM

Paraphysique de la dictature étatique A16 10:13AM

Book Review: "The New Bonapartists" A16 3:45AM

The West Must Take the First Steps to Russia A14 12:25PM

Théorie générale de la révolution ou hommage à feu Mikhaïl Bakounine A14 3:30AM

The Shortwave Report 04/13/18 Listen Globally! A12 3:50PM

“Lost in a Dream” Singing Competition Winner to Be Chosen on April 15 for ,000 Prize! A12 3:48PM

The World Dependent on Central Banks A12 4:43AM

Ohio Governor Race: Dennis Kucinich & Richard Cordray Run Against Mike DeWine A11 9:40PM

March 2018 Honduras Coup Again Update A10 10:52PM

Apologie du zadisme insurrectionnel A10 3:33PM

ICE contract with license plate reader company A10 1:14PM

Palimpseste sisyphéen A09 11:23PM

Black Portraiture(S) IV: The Color of Silence...Cuba No...Cambridge Yes A09 5:32AM

Prohibiting Micro-Second Betting on the Exchanges A09 4:18AM

Prosecutors treat Muslims harsher than non-Muslims for the same crimes A08 10:33PM

Amy Goodman interview on cell phone safety A08 10:29PM

Mesa, Arizona police officer kills unarmed white man A08 9:50PM

Israeli leaders should be prosecuted for war crimes A08 9:48PM

Paraphysique de l'autorité A08 12:11AM

Two Podcasts on fbi corruption A06 10:13PM

Fbi assassins assault & try to kill DAVID ATKINS A06 7:29PM

More Breaking News...
© 2000-2018 Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by the Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Running sf-active v0.9.4 Disclaimer | Privacy