Monday, January 31, 2005

Sunoco Logistics has allowed 63,000 gallons of crude oil to spill into the Kentucky River north of Carrollton, Kentucky last Wednesday. By Monday the company had fixed and restarted the ruptured pipeline, though the spilled oil had already spread to the Ohio river and contaminated drinking water 60 miles away in Louisville, Kentucky. The federal Environmental Protection Agency's workers were able to skim approximately 40,000 gallons off the water's surface. Louisville Water Company treated the water to remove tastes or odors associated with the oil. Company spokesperson Barbara Crow promises that the levels of carcinogens "we're seeing in the river are not exceeding the federal standards" for drinking water.

Sunday, January 30, 2005

Minnesota teenager Jeffrey Parson was sentenced to two and a half years in prison for a 2003 attempt to take down Microsoft which cost the company $1.2 million. U.S. District Judge Marsha Pechman told Parson he had done "a terrible thing. You shook the foundation of the system." He will likely be sentenced to pay Microsoft restitution on February 10.

Friday, January 28, 2005

Russia - Fueled by widespread poverty and an the ongoing conflict with Chechen rebels, the Russian neo-nazi skinhead movement is growing in size and militancy. Nationalist skinhead gangs first appeared in Russia in the early 1990s and were comprised of only about a dozen adherents. Today their ranks are estimated to be 60,000 strong. They primarily target foreigners and last year alone were responsible for forty-four racially motivated murders.

Iowa - Adair County Jail inmate, Nick Briner 31, was able to escape through
a small hole in a fence. He was caught days later in Keytesville, Missouri,
attempting to steal a car.

Thursday, January 27, 2005

Senegal - Students in Dakar have taken to the streets and are fighting the police for the second time this month. Unemployment is high and half of the population is under 18 years of age; many feel demonstrations are the only way to make their voices heard.
Afghanistan - An Afghan soldier opened fire inside a U.S. military base, killing five and wounding six other Afghan soldiers, before he was killed. In a bizarre show of double speak the U.S. military said in a statement that there was "no evidence" the attack was the work of militants.

Carlo Giuliani 1979 - 2001

Italy - A bomb was detonated yesterday in Sardinia outside a home belonging to a member of the paramilitary Carabinieri. Nobody was injured in the explosion, which occurred on the eve of a trial in which the bomb's target and a number of other senior police officers, doctors, nurses and prison guards will answer to accusations that they violently mistreated arrested demonstrators of the 2001 G8 meeting in Genoa. During the demonstration one protester shot then mutilated by Carabinieri, and scores where severely injured. The defendants can not be charged with torture because in Italy there are no laws which prohibit it.
Washington State Senator Val Stevens (Republican - Arlington) says that people, in Washington state, who commit crimes in the name of animal rights or protecting the environment should be locked up for longer sentences than those who break the law for other reasons. She is trying to pass legislation which would ensure that. Senate Bill 5314 may suffer the same fate as the identical bill Stevens attempted to pass last year. If the bill is not scheduled a hearing by March 2 it will not even have a chance to be debated. Senate Judiciary Committee chairman, Senator Adam Kline, (Democrat -Seattle), who is responsible for doing so, has not scheduled a hearing for it and says that it is "unlikely," that he will.

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

England - Friends of the Earth has begun an encampment to stop a new a highway bypass from Linslade, Beds, to Stoke Hammond, Bucks which would threaten wildlife, and encourage urban sprawl.
Land Struggles Around The World
  • France - Paris' largest squat, a haven for immigrants, faces eviction. Fidèle N'Tiema, an Ivory Coast native and an unofficial spokesperson for the building's occupants says they just want "the right to live in peace and dignity." Most residents immigrated from France's former colonies in Africa and can only find employment on the black market. Like many other squats, the 1000 plus residents at Batiment F, a former dormitory at Ecole Normale Supérieure university, enforce a number of rules including no stealing. Rather than involve the police squatters deal with anti-social behavior collectively and expel those who threaten the greater community. The government may not call out riot police to evict the families living at Batiment F for fear of political backlash.
  • Japan - A homeless occupation of a downtown Nagoya park, in Tokyo, which involved more than 250 people has been cleared out by more than 500 police. The government is trying to make the approximately 1,420 people who live outdoors disappear before the 2005 World Exposition begins in late March.
Colombia - A mass jailbreak initiated by Marxist rebels in Bogota allowed twenty prisoners to escape. Guards shot and killed seven who attempted to flee, wounded four, and later recaptured three. The jailbreak began when political prisoners who according to the government are not part of the FARC, used smuggled explosives to blast a hole in a wall. Forces outside assisted by providing cover with assault rifle fire.

Greek anarchists target surveillance cameras in central Athens.

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

New Mexico's desert grasslands may not be around for much longer, now that the Bush administration and energy corporations have decided to open federal lands in the Otero Mesa (roughly 2 million-acres) to oil and natural gas drilling. The state's Governor Bill Richardson (D) and environmental groups have pledged to fight this latest gift to energy companies in the courts.

Sunday, January 23, 2005

Papers released under freedom of information legislation reveal that the British government secretly used an toxic nerve gas on Irish Republican Army (IRA) prisoners during prison riots in the 1970's. The use of 'CR' or Dibenzoxazepine, a skin irritant 10 times more powerful than other tear gases, was authorized for use in prisons in 1973. Former prisoner Jim McCann spoke about the experience of being gassed. I'll never forget it, there were grown men screaming for their mothers,' he said. 'We'd all had experience in CS gas, which was easy to avoid, but this was something different, you couldn't get away from it. I felt like I was on fire. They just decided to experiment on us like we were guinea pigs.' More than 50 of the prisoners who were at Long Kesh prison, and claim to have been sprayed with the chemical have died or have developed cancerous illnesses.
Riot police attacked demonstrators with teargas and water cannons to disperse an anti-government protest in the kingdom of Swaziland were protests are illegal. Swaziland is a tiny nation between South Africa and Mozambique, were opposition, to King Mswati III, has been growing for some time. This display of state power comes only one week before a scheduled general strike.
Korea - The bodies of two homeless men were found, in a Seoul train station bathroom, after being beaten to death, allegedly by security guards. Other area homeless quickly rallied together in the station to respond to this latest indignity, and easily surrounded and overwhelmed the 20 police officers there. One hour and 20 minutes later the 100 police reinforcements were unable to disperse the crowd which had swelled to 300 strong. The crowd attack police with garbage cans and furniture until 200 more officers arrived and authorities were able to repel the angry mass.
Venezuela's self proclaimed revolutionary government and it's president Hugo Chavez is using state power to enact land reform in the interests of the country's rural poor peasants. Squatters have been getting progressively more assertive reclaiming land, which has lead to a number of bloody clashes with landlords since Chavez took office in 1999. Many of the nation's wealthy ruling class are threatening a greater showdown in the face of these latest reforms. Chavez's government was nearly unseated, by right wing military and private forces, in a 2002 coup which the US government was party to. In contrast the US government uses state power to dispossess poor land owners of their legal property from New London, Connecticut to Brooklyn, New York.
Former prisoner Curtis Jones has escaped from Henry County jail, in South Eastern Iowa, for the third time. Jones who was being held for violating probation, interference with official acts, criminal mischief and escape from custody was able to slip out of his leg irons and flee on foot while being transported from a court appearance.

Protesters temporarily halted George Bush's inaugural parade Thursday, and shut down a number of entrances to the route. Later in night a few hundred anarchists and others took part in a high spirited torch-lit procession towards an inaugural ball at the Hilton. The march was intercepted by police before reaching it's destination. More than 60 people were arrested on minor charges, most of whom were released the next morning. The demonstrators relieved a number of banks, a police station, and corporate fast food outlets, of $15,000 worth of windows. A police cruiser which tailed the march met with a brick which was hurled through the wind shield. Other protests were held throughout the country, in places like Modesto, California, Sacramento, California, Portland, Oregon, Milwakee, Wisconson, Mentor, Ohio, Vermillion, South Dakota, Lexington, Kentucky, Austin, Texas, and Toronto, Canada.

Wednesday, January 19, 2005

A claim of responsibility has been issued on behalf of the Earth Liberation Front whose members allegedly placed a number of firebombs in a partially constructed office building in the Northern California town of Auburn. The Earth Liberation Front is a radical environmental group who primarily commit actions in opposition to deforestation, urban sprawl, developments in, or near sensitive ecosystems, and gas guzzling sport utility vehicles. These recent actions, which did not result in any significant damage, are suspect because according to media reports they were committed as "a statement against work and the horror of the cubical." The statement to the media went on to promise "there will be at least one or more actions every few weeks."

Self proclaimed protesters threaten to turn around as a form of "civil disobedience" in opposition to George W Bush. Actual protesters are planning a more disobedient and less civil protest to mark Bush's inauguration this Thursday in Washington DC.

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

Algeria - Rising oil prices, a lack of housing, and record high unemployment sparked another uprising in the city of Birine. Youths and others burned down government buildings, including the city hall and a tax office. Most Algerians live in extreme poverty and suffer under an oppressive government, despite that the country is has vast reserves of energy resources and is a member of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC).

Bite Back Magazine reports that 17,262 animals were liberated and 554 acts of sabotage, vandalism and arson were committed in the name of animal liberation in 2004.

Monday, January 17, 2005

Another McDonalds CEO has died at an early age. 44 year Charlie Bell took over as head of the company last April when former CEO Jim Cantalupo died of a heart attack at 60. Bell who is credited with introducing "healthy" alternatives to the menu succumbed to colorectal cancer.

Sunday, January 16, 2005

American special forces commandos are on the ground inside Iran scouting for US air strike targets and suspected nuclear weapons sites. Iran is a country in Asia with 90 billion barrels of oil (roughly 9 percent of the world's total reserves).

Friday, January 14, 2005

Nigeria - Police officers attempting to extort bribes from motorists shot and killed at least one student and possibly a motorist who refused to pay a bribe in Uromi town. Students and others mobilized an immediate response, burning down the police station after freeing the 25 prisoners serving detention their. Two police vehicles and the residence of the Divisional Police Officer of the station were also torched. Anti-riot police have now moved into the area and are searching out student leaders, but have not yet made any arrests.
38 prisoners of Iraq's notorious Abu Ghraib prison escaped while being transfered. Although 10 were quickly recaptured, 28 remain free. The prisoners are said to be social criminals and were not insurgents. Iraqi authorities were said to be responsible for the prisoners at the time of the jail break.

Thursday, January 13, 2005

Guatemalan peasants are attempting to prevent the transport of mining equipment to a gold mine which has been polluting the area. The government had been trying to negotiate safe transport of the cargo but gave up when it was revealed that it couldn't be done without the dismantling of the Solola city pedestrian bridge, which was built by volunteer labor. A force of more than 750 armed soldiers and police officers are now attempting to push the equipment through hostile territories. They have been met with a growing resistance, and a fair share of delays, since their journey began on December 6. Protesters have been pelting the convoy with sticks, stones, and the occasional bout of gunfire. Makeshift burning barricades have also been deployed by locals who were met with return gunfire and teargas. One farmer was killed and at least a dozen others have been injured.
Unrest throughout Bolivia sparked by the rising price of drinking water, and gasoline, threaten to unseat another government.

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Not wanting to go return to battle in Iraq, a soldier decides to ambush California police officers, and take them down with him. 19-year-old Andres Raya, a U.S. Marine killed one Ceres Police Sergeant, Howard Stevenson, and critically wounded another. Raya was due to be sent back to Iraq where he had served for seven months and had been stationed in Falluja. Raya was killed three hours into the shoot out.

ACORN still sucks.

New York Acorn Housing Company is the new landlord of an East Harlem tenement were just four years ago they were helping residents to fight off an eviction attempt. Now many of the victories Acorn helped the tenants of Pleasant East win, they are taking away, like security guards, and half the maintenance staff. In place of security guards Acorn wants to give the NYPD unrestricted access to patrol the building. What may come to haunt Acorn is that unlike other buildings Acorn has taken over the residents of Pleasant East are organized and trained housing activists, trained by Acorn. "Humiliation is bad, but betrayal is worse," said Carmen Pichardo, a tenant leader and former volunteer with the group, "They are worse than any landlord, because they used to struggle with us."

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Philippines - An unknown armed group torched a corporate media news van, for not accurately reporting the news. The group ordered the crew out at gunpoint, but did not harm any of them.


Harrison David Burrows, 18, was sentenced to 2 1/2 years in prison after confessing to burning two tractors and a small recycling shed affiliated with the animal testing facilities at Brigham Young University, in the early morning hours of July 8, 2004. The action, which caused more than $30,000 in damage, was claimed in the name of the Animal Liberation Front. The minimum 5 year sentence was waived because Burrows turned in his accomplice Joshua Stephen Demmitt, who pleaded guilty and will be sentenced on January 18, to possibly 25 years. Burrows was originally caught after he returned to the crime scene to watch the fire with a roommate and submitted to FBI questioning. Later tools stolen from the location of the fires were discovered in his home.

Monday, January 10, 2005

Australia - At least one unknown person broke into the Charters Towers school over the weekend and destroyed ten classrooms, causing several thousand dollars in damage. Glue and paint was poured on computer equipment and supplies were strewn about the school grounds. Police are looking for people to come forward and give them information about the perpetrator.
Teachers in Guinea called a strike in support of a 40% pay increase. With classes canceled students in the capitol city of Conakry staged anti-government demonstrations until they were dispersed by police.
Elderly pensioners took to the streets across Russia, blocking traffic and clashing with riot police, after the government cancelled their benefits. It took police two hours to clear streets in Moscow. After which two demonstrators had to be hospitalized.
Apparently there is n o such thing as a free lunch.

Thursday, January 06, 2005

The City of Santiago Atlatongo, North of Mexico City has been turned into an autonomous zone with residents securing barricades at the entrances. The situation began when police, who attempting to make an arrest, were attacked for allegedly not having a warrant. Four officers were injured. Since then the barricades have gone up, and the central government has sent 250 more officers to quell the uprising. Three of whom have become hostages.

Two of the New Jersey squatter dwellings slated for demolition.

A nearly 20 year old secluded squatter community in Central New Jersey has recently come under the scrutiny of the local township government, who would like to see it razed. Officials say that it is a "quality-of-life issue" and despite evidence to the contrary have described the area as "just deplorable." The effort to dislocate the community is being led in part by local business leaders like Robert Landolfi who has vowed to "to do whatever we can to get them into the social-service delivery system." A 16 year long resident named Pink who built his cottage to look like a mini castle said "This is my home. I planned to fix the place up and live in peace" but now all that is "down the drain." The township claims to own the land and plans to destroy all the homes built there by March.

Wednesday, January 05, 2005

New Zealand Parliament was firebombed by at least one unknown individual early yesterday morning. The flames of two molotov cocktails failed to catch and only caused minor damage.

Environmentalists with the group Earth First! in South Florida took action against Scripps the biotechnology company attempting to build a mechanized plant next to a nature preserve in their area. In all nine people were arrested, two of whom are now facing felony criminal mischief charges for staining a carpet with debris and rotten fruit. Another two reached the company's roof and lowered a banner reading "Biodiversity! Not Biotechnology", and two used bicycle locks to lock their necks to the corporations staircase.
Berlin - Implementing a new questionable economic strategy designed to create economic growth, the German government cut unemployment benefits significantly. Riot police did all they could to hold off angry workers who attempted to storm an unemployment office in Wedding a working class neighborhood with a high rate of joblessness. The national average is over 10%.

New York based Pacific Street Films is being honored this week with a retrospective at the Harvard Film Archives in Cambridge, Massachusetts and again in March at New York's MOMA. Among the films shown will be "Anarchism in America" a road trip film, which travels across North America exploring native anarchist tradions, from those within hardcore punk to New England's town hall meetings. "Anarchism" which was originally released in 1982 has been updated for the new millenium to chronicle the anarchist resurgence since then. In one of their earlier films "Red Squad" Pacific Street Film's founders Joel Sucher and Steven Fischler attempt to turn the tables on New York City's notorious red squad, the police division responsible for surveiling leftists and subversives. These and other Pacific Street Films can be viewed by the public free of charge at The Tamiment Library in New York City.