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 crisis of Kenya and the hypocrisy of the WSF

by Rafael Uzcategui Tuesday, Feb. 05, 2008 at 8:17 PM

*A member of the collective editorship of the Venezuelan publication El Libertario (, in Spanish & English) exposes the inconsistencies of the bureaucracy that manipulates the World Social Forum through a reading of their evasive silence with regards to the tragedy that Kenya is experiencing today.

We can start by illustrating the point with an example. You live in a disorderly home, in which despite hardship, you try to make things better. A group of people turn up and say that they’d like to sleep in your house because they believe that their support will facilitate and encourage better relationships between the members of your family and that the coexistence of everyone will result in new forms of relationships in which everyone will benefit. You receive them as guests, and for a week they reiterate, incessantly, the pleasure they feel to be with this family, and they speak until they’re blue in the face about the importance of solidarity, ethical values, communication, etc.etc. In your home everyone is happy, and for a week there is a respite and an atmosphere that leaves everyone feeling satisfied. Your guests repeat, for the nth time, that you can count on them for anything, and that the links needed so that your situation might improve have already been forged and are in the process of advancing. However a short time later the situation in your house flares up again and its inhabitants start to set upon each other, like they haven’t done in a long time. You wait for your new friends to help your family out, and that they honour the recently established relationship between you. It turn out, however, that your new ‘friends’ have forgotten about you and that they are busy visiting other families just like they did with your family a few months earlier. Faced with this situation, you feel that the intentions of your ‘friends’ were never sincere, that they tricked you, and that they were really using you for ends that you still don’t understand.

This comparison can be applied to the case of the ‘Day of Global Action’ called by the WSF for the 26th January, given that they were not able, for various reasons, to hold the event as they have done since its inception in Porto Alegre. At the end of January 2007 the 7th WSF was held in Nairobi, the Kenyan capital, where the organisers tirelessly repeated how happy they were to hold it for the first time in the African continent. According to the official discourse of those days, realising the event there would provide support for the struggles of local organisations, connect with the problematics of the continent and help build bridges with its progressive elements. The actual event was, however, quite different, as I related at the time, as an observer on the ground, in a text that can be read (in Spanish) at:

In Nairobi, due to the internal crisis that the event was experiencing, it was decided that a ‘Day of Global Action’ would be held on the 26th January 2008, this call out inspired a variety of support and campaigns that would either start or be realized on this day. But, if you make the effort to review the hundreds of actions that were realized you would very quickly notice one thing: hardly any called attention to the crisis of the African country, a turmoil in which the two months of rioting and conflict has caused the deaths of more than 700 people. What happened to the good intentions that were affirmed scarcely a year ago?

The World Social Forum was created, in its moment, as a proposal for the construction of alternatives born from the coming together of movements that in 1999 was baptized as the antiglobalization movement. A large sector of the international left were taken by surprise by the mobilisations that occurred that year in the US around the WTO convention. Many of the participants of the actions in Seattle were doing so against globalisation, multinationals and capitalism, but also against the political forms of the traditional left which many people pointed to as being partly responsible for the current situation. One of the reasons for their surprise was that here was a protest movement from which they were, quite literally excluded.

The antiglobalization movement was perceived by the ‘widows of the Berlin wall’ as an opportunity to breathe life into their discourse and recover legitimacy. In the following years they dedicated themselves, meticulously, to channelling these rebel waters towards their own decrepit mill. At least if they couldn’t control the conventions and counter-summits, they wouldn’t have the same problems with a conclave such as the WSF. In Porto Alegre, the methods of the PT (Partido dos Trabalhadores, Lula’s ruling party in Brasil) to assume protagonism of the event left no doubt that the WSF would be an arena in order to see which leftwing tendency would control proceedings. And sooner rather than later, this ‘other world is possible’ was colonized by the world of the dogmatic and authoritarian parliamentary left. No-one was surprised that the expensive stalls at Porto Alegre were selling Stalin t-shirts, or that the ‘leftist’ governments had the largest exhibits or that the NGO’s with greater economic capacity were the ones that monopolized the discussion forums. On a micro level, the WSF reproduced all the perversions that it, in theory, questioned.

During those days in Nairobi, the locals remembered the tribal struggles as something distant, and tried to take the first steps towards a western style democracy, that being their point of reference. However, it as if, after the events at the WSF in Caracas, in which the WSF accentuated the polarization that fragmented the grass roots movements in Venezuela (see, the event has been put under a curse. Thus after the WSF visited Kenya, the African country’s sleeping demons awoke, while the politburo of the new international of progressive bureaucracy looks the other way.

There are those who participate in the WSF who genuinely want change, but the crisis that the conclave is experiencing is related to this throng of functionaries and minor bureaucrats of the left who perceive the event as a platform to in their words, “…accumulate forces and change their correlation…” They are same people who demand in shouting voices that the WSF should have a program for assuming power, and that they crave it because amongst the invited are strongmen and authoritarian prophets of every variety.

But I can save myself the effort of making all the explications. The silence of the WSF in the face of the unfolding crisis in Kenya, the most recent country to have served it as an Amphitryon, says it all.

Rafael Uzcategui


Report this post as:

Listed below are the 10 latest comments of 1 posted about this article.
These comments are anonymously submitted by the website visitors.
Pyramid of Peace Andrius Kulikauskas Thursday, Feb. 07, 2008 at 6:33 PM

Local News

Change Links September 2018 posted S02 10:22PM

More Scandals Rock Southern California Nuke Plant San Onofre A30 11:09PM

Site Outage Friday A30 3:49PM

Change Links August 2018 A14 1:56AM

Setback for Developer of SC Farm Land A12 11:09PM

More problems at Shutdown San Onofre Nuke J29 10:40PM

Change Links 2018 July posted J09 8:27PM

More Pix: "Families Belong Together," Pasadena J02 7:16PM

"Families Belong Together" March, Pasadena J02 7:08PM

Short Report on the Families Belong Together Protest in Los Angeles J30 11:26PM

Summer 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert! J11 6:58AM

Watch the Debate: Excluded Candidates for Governor of California M31 5:20AM

Change Links June 2018 posted M28 7:41AM

The Montrose Peace Vigil at 12 Years M22 8:01PM

Unity Archive Project M21 9:42AM

Dianne Feinstein's Promotion of War, Secret Animal Abuse, Military Profiteering, Censorshi M17 10:22PM

CA Senate Bill 1303 would require an independent coroner rather than being part of police M10 9:08PM

Three years after OC snitch scandal, no charges filed against sheriffs deputies M10 8:57PM

California police agencies violate Brown Act (open meetings) M02 8:31PM

Insane Company Wants To Send Nuke Plant Waste To New Mexico A29 11:47PM

Change Links May 2018 A27 8:40AM

Worker-Owned Car Wash on Vermont Closed A27 5:37AM


lausd whistle blower A11 6:58AM

Website Upgrade A10 10:02AM

Help KCET and UCLA identify 60s-70s Chicano images A04 8:02PM

UCLA Luskin: Casting Youth Justice in a Different Light A02 6:58PM

Change Links April 2018 A01 6:27PM

More Local News...

Other/Breaking News

Antrhopocène, le grand effondrement S19 9:53AM

Creative Destruction Hack Diamonds Windows/iOS/Android - Creative Destruction Generator S19 12:51AM

Abolir l'économie S18 11:18AM

The Dictatorship of Corporations S17 5:26PM

18 Lethal Consequences Of Hunting S17 3:13PM

Paraphysique de l'outplacement déontologue S15 6:51AM

Creative Destruction Hack Mod Generator S15 3:49AM

Shopping du bashing S14 8:42AM

After Lehman Brothers, Experts Say Global Financial Crisis Can Happen Again S13 8:28PM

“Animaniacs in Concert!” Starring Voice Legend Rob Paulsen S12 9:30PM

Probabilités de fin d'humanité S12 6:49AM

Florida Area of Migrant Farmworkers Denied Right to Construct Health Clinic near NaplesCIW S11 2:57AM

Propagande de virus, virus de propagande S10 7:34AM

Steer clear of work morality! S09 12:10PM

Sweatshop Lodge Ceremony Continues in US Fed Prisons Led by Inmates S08 6:17PM

Paraphysique de l'origami S08 7:11AM

The Shortwave Report 09/07/18 Listen Globally! S06 11:23PM

August 2018 Honduras Coup update S06 12:28PM

Du réussissement putréfié S06 10:55AM

Brett Kavanaugh Filled The 5th Circuit With Execution Judges S06 6:14AM

Log S06 4:25AM

Augusta Georgia Woman Gets 5 Year Prison Sentence for Writing About Russians Crime Acts S05 8:29AM

Paraphysique de contextualité S05 8:29AM

Crisis Regulation in Global Capitalism S03 3:39PM

Ex-voto de réification S03 10:24AM

Please Oppose Warmonger, Execution and Torture Supporting Bush Operative Brett Kavanaugh A31 10:45PM

Paraphysique d'exploitation occultation A31 10:24PM

Ryan Zinke Is Charging Taxpayers For A Trophy Hunters' Council A31 2:10PM

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