From Libcom.org: http://libcom.org/news/indignados-seville-barcelona-reports-spanishrevolution-13062011
Submitted by posi
Jun 13 2011
Reports from anarchists in two different cities in Spain about the assemblies movement there. From late May/Early June 2011. Translated for The Commune.
Indignados in Seville
I find it difficult to write about the movement of indignados in Seville and maybe that’s because I’ve been an activist for many years in this city. So I’m writing while aware that my opinions aren’t very representative of the movement as a whole.
For the people with more experience of militancy, this movement, largely spontaneous, caught us totally by surprise. This has had palpable consequences. On the one hand most of the people involved are very depoliticised (in a certain meaning of the word) and have very little experience of organising, which means organisation has been from the beginning very chaotic. On the other hand, amongst the more ideological collectives, the supposedly depoliticised character and the extreme moderation of the demands has caused a certain rejection of the movement. The camp in Seville has taken on a character which I think is fairly similar to the other cities in Spain. There is a ferocious rejection of any type of organisation or political symbols, starting with parties and unions, but also a rejection of ideologies, ignoring the fact that the movement itself is being formed with a body of very defined and clear ideas. The reformist nature of the demands is also generating a notable rejection on the part of a lot of comrades.
However, there are aspects of the movement (and its underlying ideas) which should be especially interesting for libertarians and autonomists. There is a total consensus about decision making through the mass assembly, rejection of hierarchical structures and vigilance regarding the creation of unnecessary leaders. The ferocity of the non-party nature of the movement comes from the fear of the co-option by political organisations which could try to impose their agenda, which should seem laudable. On the other hand, in the development of the occupation of the plazas there is a clear eagerness to generate forums for discussion, take a public space and an eagerness for autonomy and self organisation which moves to the commissions which are trying to extend into the barrios.
The demands have come to a large extent from outside the movement, from Madrid or from other spaces, and although they have been accepted in Seville, they are in great measure an excuse or one of the least important elements in what is an expression of generalised discontent, disorganised and without a real political agenda. The main idea that moves people is the discredited nature of representative democracy and two-party politics, and the subordination of politics to the interests of large capital. Apart from this the movement is extremely heterogeneous and none of its parts should be taken for the whole.
Continue reading at: http://libcom.org/news/indignados-seville-barcelona-reports-spanishrevolution-13062011
From Common Dreams: http://www.commondreams.org/view/2011/06/15-4
Spain’s ‘Indignant Ones’
While “Europe’s slow-motion financial collapse” – as Mother Jones magazine described it in a June 6th article – continues to unravel, Spain, like other European states continues to implement anti-social-neo-liberal policies with strong opposition from the citizenry.
It has been one month since the country’s ‘Indignados’ (Indignant Ones) movement claimed nonviolently sixty city-squares in cities across the country, calling for economic democracy, political justice and peace. Since then, much has happened within Spanish borders, and what is happening there is clearly spreading across Europe, where we have already witnessed social movements making similar demands. We have seen the Bastille in Paris, taken nonviolently by French ‘Indignados’ only to be quickly reclaimed by the country’s police force. We have observed the rise of a parallel movement in Portugal where most city squares have also been camped on by ‘Indignados’, and where only hours before the country’s general elections protestors in Lisbon were attacked and beaten by police. We have witnessed how on that same night, in Athens, Greece, 80,000 protestors congregated in the city’s main square in opposition to the country’s ‘austerity measures’, waving banners in solidarity with the ‘Indignados’ of Spain and of other European country’s.
Wherever you focus in Europe you hear the same cries of indignation. In some countries with more intensity than others, but the cry is becoming louder everywhere, and what seemed like a slow-motion financial collapse, is rapidly becoming an accelerated social catastrophe. Specifically in Spain, despite the political elite presenting a country recovering from the financial collapse, everyday things are getting worse economically, politically, and socially, and protest although nonviolent for the most part, could be on the verge of becoming violent unless political and economic elites begin to make some concessions.
On the economic front, Spain began June with comments from the European Commission about the potential of the country missing its economic growth and budget-deficit targets for the year; its recommendation was further economic reform. Then a report from the ratings agency Moody’s, pointed out that the high Catalan deficit was affecting the solvency of the whole of Spain. A few days later, in the region of Castilla-La Mancha, the incoming administration of the rightwing Popular party (PP), before even taking office, had already proclaimed that the region was “totally bankrupt”. Then, the National Statistics Institute revealed that Spain’s property sales in April had been the lowest since the institute began reporting in 2007. Obviously, this stream of negative news coupled with discussions taking place in Europe regarding a potential debt default by Greece, affected Spain’s bond sales and moved the country one step closer to a bailout, or a default followed by its subsequent debt restructuring.
Continue reading at: http://www.commondreams.org/view/2011/06/15-4