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june 18 1999



"The collapse of the global marketplace would be a traumatic event with unimaginable consequences. Yet I find it easier to imagine than the continuation of the present regime."

George Soros, financial speculator.


INTRODUCTION

You are being sent this bulletin because you have shown interest in the June 18 1999 action, th e simultaneous occupation and transformation of Financial districts across the globe. This action - timed to coincide with the first day of the G8 summit of world leaders in Koln, Germany - is being networked around the world and hundreds of groups are beginning to organise locally. This Bulletin has been compiled by some groups in the UK and is just a glimpse of how planning is going for the day. It should also act as a catalyst and start the new J18 email discussion list working.

June 18th will be an extraordinary action - the ground is being laid for huge social and political changes. Radical social movements from all over the world are beginning to work together; this day could be a landmark in that process. Never before has there been a time when co-ordinated action across the planet has been so necessary and so possible. But there is a lot more work to do if we want to make it truly effective, as well as pivotal in the escalation and continuation of our struggle. Before the news - for those who don't know what June 18th is - go to the end of this message where you can read the action proposal which has been sent out all over the world.

 

1) THE NEW J18DISCUSSION LIST

This list is now up and running. The old list rtsdiscussion@gn.apc.org is now defunct. If you want to subscribe, send mail to listproc@gn.apc.org with the following request:

subscribe J18DISCUSSION Your Name

So GET YOURSELF SUBSCRIBED

The function of this list is to enable global discussion about planning the J18 action. IT WILL ONLY WORK IF WE ALL PARTICIPATE IN IT. Let's launch the list with a bang - send in news from your own region, tell everyone how preparations and networking are going. What crazy ideas are you having? What kind of groups are getting involved in your area? What problems are occurring? etc.

 

2) SOME NEWS FROM THE UK

20,000 lovely little folding leaflets have been printed and are being rapidly distributed. (Contact us if you want some sent to you - they are very specific to the UK action however.)

We have been holding monthly co-ordination meetings in London (the next one is Sunday 9th January at 51 Argyle St from 12-3pm.). Representatives from all UK groups are welcome. These have been well attended by a variety of different groups including Reclaim the Streets, London Animal Action, London Greenpeace/Mclibel, Zapatista Support groups, Genetic Engineering Network and Green Student Network. We still need to expand the network by a long way and involve many more sectors - women, workers, students etc.

Local groups throughout the UK are responding to the action - Edinburgh Autonomous Centre is going to do a local action the week before J18, Bristol and London and Sheffield groups are planning to hold a large J18 gathering/conference in the new year. Sheffield's is on January 18th @ 8pm at the Grapes Pub, Trippet Lane.

Other dates and venues to be announced. Groups as diverse as The Campaign Against the Arms Trade, Church Action on Poverty, Sexual Freedom Coalition, Class War, National Union of Students, Striking Tameside Care Workers and Earth First! are discussing making the action part of their campaigning next year, and we were pleased to welcome the Liverpool Dockers on board last month to add to the diversity which is the key component to this day of action.

Workshops have been held at various gatherings including the Anarchist Bookfair and Third World First conference, Earth First! gathering and the Bradford Mayday reunion.

 

3) SOME INTERNATIONAL NEWS

The proposal for action is being networked all over the place - it has been translated into Spanish, Portuguese, French, Russian, Punjabi, Dutch and some indigenous Mexican Languages. Answers are coming back from all sorts of people ranging from indigenous groups to street reclaimers in Bombay, Sydney, Tel Aviv, New York, Prague and more - from Radical French Unemployed activists to international hacktivist groups, from the Peoples' Global Action network to the Anti-MAI network.

Someone told a wonderfully inspiring story of how a J18 proposal email had travelled from the UK - via New York, Colorado, several other US cities down to Mexico city then to Chiapas and back to them personally - with a note reading "wow this action looks exciting - have you heard about it?". The power of global electronic networking can be amazing.

Much more work needs doing. Many people feel that the day will only reach its full potential if groups in Europe and the USA and the large social movements from the South (e.g.. Zapatistas in Mexico/KRRS in India/Movimento Sem Terra in Brazil) act together.

 

4) SOME PUBLICITY IDEAS (From London)

The UK leaflets are doing the rounds - but there have been some other publicity ideas:

- Stickers for ATM Cash machines

-Rubber stamping bank notes

-Posters made by screen printing onto pages of the Financial Times

-Regional meetings/workshops

There are also plans to publish a programme with action map of the City of London (Location of key targets, stock exchanges, Bank HQ's, Transnational Company HQ's, which will be given out before the day.)

 

5) SOME ACTION IDEAS for the London event:

There have been many ideas flowing around - some of which can't of course be talked about on email - but here is a taster:

-giving out free food to city workers at lunch time

- Phone in Sick day

-get cycle couriers to strike

-prevent company directors getting to work

- lots more custard pies (The head of the World Trade Organisation was pied in London a few weeks ago)

-Laughing all the way to the bank

-Permaculture gardens springing up in unusual places

-critical mass bike demo

-Pirate radio

-workshops in squatted office blocks

-leafletting/agitprop handed out

-Pickets and actions on HQ's, exchanges, banks etc.

-Throwing around lots of fake money

-Everyone brings a corporate share and burns it collectively

-Sound system in balloon floating above the City !

More brainstorming and dreaming is necessary....... A dream list will be put together by the end of the month, which will be used to inspire ideas for actions. If you have any ideas to add to the dream/wish list email them to the discussion list.

 

6) J18 WEB SITE

A special J18 web site has been designed and its url is www.gn.apc.org/june18. We hope that local groups will put up their own pages on it.

 

7) THE TRANSNATIONAL CARAVAN

An amazing action which is related to June 18 is the Inter-Continental Caravan - organised by groups involved with the Peoples' Global Action. This is an action tour of Europe by 500 radical Indian activists, which begins in May and ends at the G8 in Koln on June 18th. The idea is to bring issues affecting the South to the doorsteps of the companies and institutions responsible in the North. If you would like to help with this or find out more email caravan@stad.dsl.nl.

 

8) WHAT NEXT

Let's have more dialogue and more news - June 18th has enormous potential - SPREAD the idea NETWORK, ORGANISE local meetings, CHOOSE your favourite Transnational Corporation or bank and find out as much as possible about them so that you can PLAN your action, and most of all DREAM DREAM DREAM.............. IMAGINE WHAT IS POSSIBLE.......

 

IF YOU HAVE ANY INFORMATION FOR THE BULLETIN

EMAIL THE J18DISCUSSION LIST

PAPER COPIES FOR DISTRIBUTION ARE AVAILABLE

SEND SAE TO J18/RTS, POB0X 9656, LONDON N4 4JY,UK