Block the Bank! Fight the Fund! Reclaim Our Communities!
Confront Economic Violence and Corporate Capitalism during the World Bank and IMF Annual Meetings September 23-25, 2005 :: Washington DC :: Call for DIRECT ACTION
September 23rd to 25th 2005, the weekend of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund’s annual meetings, holds great importance for millions around the world. This year, the Mobilization for Global Justice, a Washington DC-based activist group, will join our allies in the global South, Europe, and the U.S. as well as with those in the anti-war community to demand an end to the international system that uses economic and military might to extract resources and serve corporate interests. We envision a world with true development, democracy, and security, and where economic policy serves the interests of the people. We call for creative direct actions on the weekend of September 23rd to 25th – all the action you can muster to shake the pillars of empire to their rotten and festering core – and work towards another possible world.
As the U.S. spends millions of public dollars a day on the deadly occupation of Iraq, the World Bank and IMF are promoting a violence less sensational and far more insidious. Using the mechanism of international debt, the World Bank and the IMF are waging a global war on the poor. Through the privatization of basic services, the prying open of developing countries' economies, and the capping of spending on healthcare, education, and employment even as military spending balloons, the institutions ensure that any resources in the global South – from water to oil, minerals to labor, bananas to money – are transferred to the benefit of transnational corporations and elites rather than to local communities.
The extraction of Southern resources facilitated by the World Bank and IMF leads to an escalation of economic violence and the destruction of real democracy and development. Forced relocation, hunger, increased poverty, environmental destruction, and disease are all direct products of World Bank and IMF policies. Rampant privatization means that communities the world over are seeing control over local resources wrested from them and delivered to unaccountable multinational corporations. For women forced to work long hours for sweatshop wages, for children orphaned by the AIDS pandemic, for families forced to skip meals, for girls who cannot afford to attend school, for communities uprooted by dams, mines, and pipelines, this is not real development, it is violence. For the people of the global South whose lives are disrupted, worsened, jeopardized, and often ended, this is not true security; it is not true democracy.
These policies extend even into the U.S.: as residents of Washington DC, we are the reluctant hosts of the World Bank, the IMF, and other institutions of empire. With our only public hospital closed, a deteriorating public school system, a private baseball stadium being built with public funds we see that the same policies of private gain at public expense imposed on borrowing countries by the World Bank and IMF are also at work in Washington. The World Bank and IMF make billions a year in profits, use services provided by the city, and sit on valuable property downtown, yet they pay no property taxes or corporate revenue taxes. This is an injustice in a city with a majority low-income population and is a cruel hypocrisy on the part of the institutions, which state “poverty reduction” and “economic development” as part of their goals.
September 23rd to 25th the movements for global justice will defy the corrupt global system which concentrates economic and military power in a few countries and whose agents to run riot across the globe, extracting essential resources, exacerbating climate change, and impoverishing the majority of humanity. The model of development promoted by the World Bank and IMF is emulated at all levels – from national governments to city councils – supporting corporate power and placing profit before people, waging economic and military war and promoting social and environmental destruction, in its hunger for the world’s resources.
Join us and the millions around the world dedicated to a world where development, security, and democracy are no longer tools of rhetoric employed by the World Bank, the IMF, and the U.S. government but are realities in the lives of all. Come to Washington DC September 23-25th for a weekend of spirited action to shake the pillars of empire!
The Mobilization for Global Justice is a Washington DC-based activist group. We are committed to organizing effective, strategic, and creative direct actions during the World Bank and IMF fall meetings.
Please visit our website www.globalizethis.org or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
for updates on the weekend and information on how to get involved.