Spain 2011

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Spain 2011



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Spain's 'los indignados' are outraged over economic stagnation. The banner reads "Let's go to the square". [REUTERS]

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Dick Nichols, from the Green Left Weekly European bureau, reports from the scene at Plaza Catalonia.

* * *

Somewhere in this city lives a group of brutal numbskulls called the “government of Catalonia”.

On Thursday, May 26, these people decide that it is time to “clean up” Plaza Catalonia, the big square in the centre of Barcelona where the “indignants” of the #spanishrevolution and Real Democracy Now movement have pitched tents, installed webcams and planted veggie patches.

Early the next day, we awake to the thump-thump of the police helicopter as their operations begin.

It is 6.45am, and 100 police have entered the camp to explain to the disconcerted “indignants” that they had come to clean up the area “for reasons of public health”: the protestors have to leave the area. The protestors refuse, but offer nicely to help with any clean-up.

The police then surround the camp with a double cordon to prevent the support that the protestors had called from entering.

At this point there are 300 campers inside the square, who watch on while council workers started to dismantle the entire camp, taking away everything.

As support arrives it began to surround the outer police cordon, which tries to force people back to the outer edges of the square. When people link arms to oppose passive resistance to this operation, the police begin to attack with truncheons.

The passive resistance continues, and the police attacks intensify, even as the protestors keep up the chant: “We won’t move from Plaza Catalonia.”

The police next try to open space for the council trucks to leave the square, but it keeps filling up with protestors sitting down before the trucks.

The police attacks intensify, especially after 10.15am, when reinforcements arrive to force a way out for the trucks. All this is televised live.

The council trucks finally manage to get out around 11am, and a tense calm returns.

Mission accomplished, so it would seem. Felip Puig, the Catalan interior minister appears before the media to explain that he had reluctantly to bring in 300 riot police to protect Barcelona’s decent garbos from assault by violent weirdo protestors.

For a short time, the square seems to re-open to normal business (tourists taking photos and buying schlock).

Slight hiccup, however. No-one in the Catalan government seems to have heard of things called “Facebook” or “Twitter” (or maybe they think such things only work in Cairo).

Over the next hour supporters of the camp pour in from around Barcelona, so that by 1pm the police can no longer hold the square. They begin to retreat before a crowd now numbered at over 2000 and finally abandon the square.

Next, at 2.30pm, in solidarity with Plaza Catalonia, students from the University of Barcelona block off the Diagonal, the big avenue that runs across the whole city, generating traffic chaos.

At the same time everyone even vaguely connected with the #spanishrevolution movement starts receiving messages to go to Plaza Catalonia by 7pm --with saucepans and spoons for a cacerolazo (pot banging protest).

Result? By 8.30pm the square is full of up to 10,000 people and the “indignants” are re-establishing their camp. Enormous enthusiasm for victory over the idiots!

Protest gatherings and marches in solidarity with Barcelona (and Lleida, where a similar “clean up” took place) now explode in towns across Catalonia and Spain.

A petition demanding Puig’s resignation has already gathered 10,000 signatures. All the other parties start to criticise the government’s action.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Footage of the huge May 15 demonstration in Madrid.


Footage of the police attack on Plaza Catalonia (Barcelona) and the resistance.


Footage of protesters retaking Plaza Catalonia.


epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Spaniards force French Embassy closure

Mon May 30, 2011 6:17PM

The French consulate in Barcelona has been forced to close its doors after about 20 protesters of the M-15 movement prevented the staff from entering the building.

The protesters said on Monday they were acting in solidarity with the French protesters people who called for an end to corruption and unemployment, and were dispersed by police from Place de la Bastille in Paris over the weekend.


Spain's M-15 movement has inspired other European countries as well.

Hundreds of Parisians on Sunday took part in a protest rally at the Bastille Square, calling for a popular democratic uprising among Europeans, while some 20,000 Greek protesters gathered near the parliament building in Athens with the same call....


(..edit to add what was happening at the bastille)

Video report on the forceful evacuation of peaceful gathering at the Bastille:



Is the current left-wing government in Spain particularly unpopular, or is it simply a result of the backlash that a governing party inevitably feels when a country's economy tanks?

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Aristotleded24 wrote:

Is the current left-wing government in Spain particularly unpopular, or is it simply a result of the backlash that a governing party inevitably feels when a country's economy tanks?

..this is why or at least it's my understanding of why. the cost of bank bailouts and shock doctrine.

Spain austerity plan scrapes through parliament

By Sonya Dowsett

Reuters) - Spain's governing Socialists won approval for a 15 billion euro ($18.4 billion) austerity package by a single vote on Thursday, but the narrowness of the victory raised doubts over the government's ability to steer the country through an economic crisis.


..for an analysis there's this:


Ken Burch

Aristotleded24 wrote:

Is the current left-wing government in Spain particularly unpopular, or is it simply a result of the backlash that a governing party inevitably feels when a country's economy tanks?

The current government of Spain is left-wing in name only.  It isn't even "Socialist" in theory.  It is unpopular precisely because it responded to the current crisis exactly as a right-wing government would have (and more or less as the "NDP" government of Saskatchewan did in the 1990's).  The right-wing opposition party will probably win the next Spanish general election and carry on the austerity program, although slightly more brutally.  Thus, Spain is going into a political vacuum in which the working-class and the impoverished will have no expression of their views and no way to work for their own interests other than some form of direct action in the streets.  Party politics will be useless to such people for years to come, if not forever.  The longer this situation goes on(and it's likely that several Popular Party governments could win by default in such a vacuum, given that there will be no reason to vote for the "Socialists" unless you're a middle-class moneygrubber who likes the idea of change of government in name only), it will grow more and more likely that the Popular Party will revert to its Falangist roots to preserve order, using brute force to suppress dissent.  In all liklihood, the "Socialist" official opposition will cheer them on in this.  Long live the glorious era or right-wing social democracy.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..spain election happened on may 25th and the conservatives are now in power. it's not that the conservative vote increased but that people did not vote for the so called socialist. they voted for smaller parties. in fact the voter turnout increased. i can't remember where i read this but will find it again and post it.

..the outcome of all this is no way clear as the eu is now talking about easing up on it's demands because of the spanish resistance. it's not going to help though as fight back is both building and linking up all across europe with the demand for democracy front and center.


Ken Burch

Correction:  the election on May 25th was for local governments in Spain.  The "Socialists" are still in power nationally, for whatever that may be worth.

I did hear that parties to the left of the Socialists did make some gains.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..txs ken, i stand corrected.

Ken Burch

No biggie. 

What I'm wondering is, will this bring Spain's anarchist tradition back to life? 

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The police brutally attempt to dislodge the peaceful occupaton of plaze Cataluna in Barcelona, on May 27th.


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..i'm seeing a really diverse movement/s that can't help but embrace anarchist elements but i don't see it as an anarchist movement. if you read comments from some of the "leaders" of it's something new and surprising.  

..not sure if this makes sense but i'm thinking watch and learn because i believe young people here are not so far off. i remember the battle in seattle that took everyone by surprise. that was because there were no "leaders". young people came from all over that had been actively involved in small environmental / political / local groups. they were off the political radar so to speak. not mired in political debate but very diverse, decentralized and democratic..ready to work with others and put themselves on the line.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture


..this site is well worth sorting through to quickly understand that there really is a revolution going on. You can see this by the photos alone. narry a word about it in msm.

Protests planned worldwide for the next days (updated):

      • Thursday, June 2nd

PERUGIA:  20:00, Piazza IV Novembre

      • Friday, June 3rd

BRESCIA: 20.00, Piazza Loggia

        • Barcelona. Catalunya Square occupation continues.
        • Madrid. Sol Square occupation continues.
        • P A R I S. Bastille Square occupation continues.
        • London. Trafalgar Square occupation continues.
        • Athens.  Syntagma Square occupation continues.
        • Lisbon, Oporto and Coimbra square occupations continue.



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Spain’s 15-M protests and the politics of “autonomy”

By Robert Stevens
3 June 2011

Protesters in Madrid’s Puerta Del Sol square in Madrid have insisted to World Socialist Web Site reporters that the demonstrations by “los indigandos” have “no leadership” and are organised by “autonomous” collectives, commissions and assemblies. Above all, they stress, no parties should dominate over “the movement”.

However, there are political tendencies at work in every spontaneous movement. The issue is, what social forces do the various tendencies represent and what direction will they impart?

The insistence on “no politics” finds traction because of the widespread hostility to the major parties, including the ruling Socialist Workers Party of Spain (PSOE) and the Stalinist-led United Left. But its effect is to provide a political amnesty for these parties—and to facilitate the activities of various fake left groups whose overarching aim is to prevent any political challenge to the domination of the PSOE and the trade union bureaucracy....


Catchfire Catchfire's picture

Lessons from Spain's Camp Sol and the 'Indignant' movement

 If we want change to happen, we're going to need a critical mass of people who will push for it. We need to be brutally honest with ourselves about the ways that our actions and our rhetoric often make creating that critical mass more difficult. Demonstrating that social justice movements are about the birth of something more beautiful is the best alternative, and Madrilenos did that in the Puerta del Sol.

Now we must hope that the decision to dismantle the city doesn't cause fragmentation in the movement, and undo some of the good work that has been done. And pass along the messages of del Sol in our own communities.


Real Democracy Now! Canada

This is an appeal to every politically engaged person in Canada.  Whether you are a progressive, socialist, conservative, liberal, anarchist, environmentalist, activist, etc., we are calling on you to begin the process of democratic consensus building.  Currently the voice of the people remains fragmented and divided.  As a result, we are collectively devoid of any meaningful influence in the political process. 


Many of us adhere to a political ideology, or belong to a political organization, while a great number of others consider themselves to be apolitical and disinterested.  We are all, however, affected by the political and economic reality that exists around us.


Real Democracy Now - Canada, is not a political party.  We do not follow a particular ideology, or adhere to any party line.  We exist to facilitate the establishment of a broad based federation of political groups and individuals capable of mobilizing for meaningful change.  We are inviting EVERY person to come together as citizens; to discuss, debate, and ultimately, to form a democratic consensus on the political issues that affect us all.  Only by doing this will we be able to overcome the fragmentation that has for so long left us paralysed, voiceless, and unable to develop a political force capable of challenging the current hegemonic political paradigm. 


This is not a call for passive affiliation and collaboration between organizations.  This a call to commence debate, to open dialog, and to utilize direct democracy in order to arrive at mutually agreed upon consensus.


This message is addressed to EVERYONE; workers, students, the unemployed, teachers, lawyers, professors, activists; anyone who feels underrepresented by the current political order.  No longer can we allow the politicians and media to speak for us, it is time for us to discover what the true values and needs of Canadians are, and to mobilize and fight for what we believe in.


Let us join the millions around the world who are fighting to build a better future.


Divided we fall, united we stand.

Together we can change the world.  


If you or your organization are interested in participating in this great democratic endeavour, please contact us by sending an email to [email protected].













By the way, thank you for starting this thread, providing all this great information and keeping us all updated on these developments. This is something we have to organize in Canada. Cheers. 



This is a global movement folks. Current Real Democracy Now groups active around the world. 



European Revolution


Albanian Revolution for Democracy 


Echte Demokratie jetzt 


Democracia Real YA - Bruselas

Réelle Démocratie Maintenant ! BELGIUM

Czech Republic

Czech Revolution

CZ Česko - Skutečná Demokracie TEĎ


Democracia Real Ya! Copenhague



Opération Révolution France

List by city:


Echte Demokratie jetzt

Democracia Real Ya - German Events


Αγανακτισμενοι Στο Συνταγμα 



Call for a revolution in Ireland


Italian Revolution - Democrazia reale ora


Portuguese Revolution

Democracia Verdadeira, JÁ


European Revolution - Slovensko


Democracia real YA

Spanish Revolution

Acampada en Sol

United Kingdom

Democracia Real Ya Londres 

UK Revolution - Real Democracy Now




Democracia Real Ya, Argentina

Revolución Global YA - Argentina

¡Democracia Real YA! Buenos Aires


Democracia Real Brasil

Democracia Real Já, Brasil




Democracia Real YA PERÚ


Democracia real ya, Venezuela




Real Democracy Now! Canada




Puerto Rico

Democracia real YA - Puerto Rico

United States





Afrikan Revolution




Northern Shoveler Northern Shoveler's picture

When people take over from the political class the results seem to be fairly consistent.  Human beings naturally form into open and democratic groups to take care of each others needs.  The term is mutual aid if you are an anarchist or empathy if you are apolitical.  The result it the same, caring for each other in the face of adversity.

Lets not forget that some Canadians were making the same points and in the same manner.  To bad most Canadians were all watching the hockey finals instead.  Humans all want many of the same things as one of the women in the video clip says, "we all need love and respect."

Wake up Canada and embrace the streets.


Mike Stirner

" Human beings naturally form into open and democratic groups to take care of each others needs."


Don't need a welfare state when that happens do you.

Northern Shoveler Northern Shoveler's picture

Mike Stirner wrote:

" Human beings naturally form into open and democratic groups to take care of each others needs."


Don't need a welfare state when that happens do you.

Once it happens at more than a fenced in area of temporary occupation then many things become possible.  Did you watch the video?  Some well spoken grassroots advocates willing to put themselves on the line. 

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

June 13, 2011

2011-06-13 Camps in Madrid and Barcelona dismount #AcampadaSol & #AcampadaBCN of #SpanishRevolution #EuropeanRevolution

The camps slowly disappear After weeks of tension and negotiations last week the General Assembly of Puerta del Sol (Madrid) and Plaza Catalunya (Barcelona) agreed to lift camp today. Starting early in the morning the squares have been progressively stripped bare and will be lifted completely this evening, almost 25 days after they started. In Madrid, the makeshift furniture, tents and posters have been slowly removed all week long. Today various trucks are being loaded and the last remaining parts are being taken down, the 4000 books donated to the library will end up in various social centers, while most of the furniture will be recycled or destroyed by a disposal vehicle brought in by the city authorities. Some of the protestors, in both cities, have decided to remain, arguing that initial idea was to stay indefinitely. Their freedom to do so has been respected but they fear that it will result in police action. Some of them also proposed the idea of making it an itinerant camp that could move through squares around the city but a consensus was not achieved on this matter. It is also to be seen if a permanent information booth will be installed and left behind.

A restructuring of the movement “We are not leaving, we are expanding” is the motto behind the lifting of the tents. This coincides with the idea that the central camp of Sol will hand over the baton to the neighborhood assemblies, who are in charge of local action, such as the ones carried our already: protests outside health centers that are to be privatized, gatherings before local government representatives or debates for specific action in each district. All of these smaller assemblies will carry the movement onward, while Sol square will remain as an extraordinary gathering place, a symbol for the movement and a space for the General Assembly. Other camps in Spain The camps in Huelva, Granada, Mieres, Langreo, Aviles, Gijon, Oviedo, Teruel and Salamanca have chosen to follow the examples of the main cities and leave the squares. Some of them, like Pamplona will have a permanent information point where people can ask for ways to participate. In other places such as in Tenerife, Santiago de Compostela, Valencia and Santander the camps will go on indefinitely.

Live feed from Madrid:



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epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

June 15, 2011

#AcampadaBCN received this on 7th June… #15m #19j #spanishrevolution #europeanrevolution

Letter sent to: the people responsible in the youth platform in Placa Catalunya:

It was about time: – That you moved your young backsides -from in front of consoles and video games
It was about time: – That you moved your young backsides -from in front of computer screens
It was about time: - That you said you exist.
It was about time: –That you went out to – fight - sweat- and demand your - no longer ‘uncertain future’- but INEXISTANT future.
It was about time: - That you mobilised yourselves for nobody will fix it for you
It was about time: - That you demonstrated you’re alive!
It was about time: -That you started to show your feelings as a person
It was about time: -That you demanded back what so many times was offered to you as false promises. “Work” “Future” and “Social Well Being”
It was about time: -That you realised that the politicians only used you to get to their thrones and to rob you blind.
It was about time: -That you realised that shutting up gets you nowhere.
It was about time: -That you took off your gags.
It was about time: -That you demonstrated that you have dignity.
It was about time: -That you made yourselves be heard
It was about time: -That you realised you need more than the LEFTOVERS
that they have been giving you
It was about time: -That you woke up from this couldn't-care-less
dream you’ve been in for far too long.
It was about time: -That you realised you have no future
It was about time: -That you realised that without expressing yourself nobody would take a damned bit of notice of you
It was about time: -That you understood that the future in your, ‘the youths’, hands, and that your struggle and your demands will be the conditions which you will live in.
It was about time: -That you stopped living with your parents
It was about time: -That you thought that life is more than: Party –
Mega Cars –Fun
Come on youth: You are the future of the world

Come on youth: Fight for your future and your tomorrow, today the majority of you have nothing!

Us: your elders had to fight a lot to get what we have, and between: Robber – Chorizos – Thieves – Delinquents –Etc, they’re fucking up all that we got through our struggles. Now it’s your turn to fight!

You can do it!
Good Luck!
A pissed off old lady,

Ken Burch

Glad she's sending them support, although the hectoring, scolding tone was a bit over the top.  Why chew people out when they've already learned the lesson the chewing-out was meant to teach? she used the word, does "Chorizos" mean anything  other than sausages?  Is that a slang term in Spain these days?

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..they chose to post it. it must have meant something to the young'ins. maybe permission. 

Ken Burch

I realize they chose to post it.  Perhaps, culturally, that's the way parents and grandparents speak to kids in Spain(is it recognizable to you?-I ask that because I've been assuming you're a Spaniard).

What's happening in Spain is new, and it's an outgrowth of the Arab Spring and the general rising tide of revolt.  It will create models we haven't seen yet.

Ken Burch

BTW, I'd like to take this opportunity to call on the Spanish Socialist Party to dissolve no longer represents socialism or "The Left" in any recognizable form, it's economic program is just like that of the PP, and it really has no reason to exist anymore.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Ken Burch wrote:

I realize they chose to post it.  Perhaps, culturally, that's the way parents and grandparents speak to kids in Spain(is it recognizable to you?-I ask that because I've been assuming you're a Spaniard).

What's happening in Spain is new, and it's an outgrowth of the Arab Spring and the general rising tide of revolt.  It will create models we haven't seen yet.

..i understood you to realize it ken. i was prosessing which i do out loud quite often and came up with the permission thingy. i am french canadian actually though i have lost most of my french. i did spend 8 months in the south of spain around alicante in 2007-08. i do miss it. there was a market every sat around 10 blocks square. is new and i've already adopted it as "the" way forward. i've got some thoughts that i will share once i get them together.'ll get no argument from me re the de socalizing the party. to be honest though i don't care what they call themselves. i haven't looked past behaviours for a long time now. i saw the tread you started and when i have more time i'll run through it. but i'll stop rambling now. luego.


epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

#Spanishrevolution blockades Parliament in #Barcelona, violence tinges the 15M movement #europeanrevolution

At least 36 people have been injured after Spanish policed dispersed thousands of protesters blockading the first day of the Catalan Parliament in Barcelona. The regional government is set to pass many measures that will cut spending to social services by up to 10 percent. The protests are a continuation of the M-15 movement, which is demanding a more participatory democracy and social justice. Late on Tuesday afternoon, June 14th, the police forcibly evicted hundreds of people from the public park, where protests were planning to camp. However, the people remained there, and a massive popular assembly of several thousand was held at the gates.

The gathering started last night and barricades we constructed blocking all entrances to the builiding. Early Wednesday morning police officers dispersed them blockading by force using rubber bullets, after many politicians, however acknowledging the right to protest, asked for their own legitimate right to work. The indignados, however, remained oblivious, and many stated that they would not let them pass, that they could go away or joing them. Even though the police tried to escort the legistlators safely into Parliament, the direct approach by many of them brought local outbursts of violence: objects such as banana peals were thrown, some of them were painted with spray paint and all of them were thouroughly insulted. As the violence grew, police decided to transport the remaining politicians by helicopter, twenty five of them arrived in this fashion, including the President to the chamber, Artur Mas. All the official sites for the movement have condemmed the violent actinos carried out in Barcelona, saying that they wish to remind the general public that these were only a few individuals and that they do not represent the movement as a whole...


epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Secret police accused of violence in #Barcelona, evidence surfaces on the Web #europeanrevolution #joambelparlament #15m15j #aturemparlament

The following video is coming up repeatedly throughout social media networks and other channels:

In it is the alleged evidence proving that the violence against politicians outside of the Catalan Parliament in Barcelona was started by undercover police. This is not an uncommon tactic for police or government services, as it was proved true in several of the Arab countries that carried out their own revolts. The video shows the start of the incidents, and the cameraman is heard to be saying “those are the ones that started it, over there”. Various people in the video can be seen pointing towards a group calling them out as the agitators. A young man can be seen angrily reprimanding them for their actions and then the camera realizes that one of them is seen to be wearing a earphone. A small group of them gather together away from the protestors and are surrounded by cries that signaled them out as policemen. Shortly afterward the riot police escorted them away, proving their status. This coincides with various tweets, whose user´s stated that they had asked the police to intervene against the violent ones and received no response. There is also a photo that proves the same fact.


Spain's Protest Movement -  by Danny Schechter

"They tend to think like anarchists and talk in terms of self-management as a principle of political economy. The 15th of May, 2011 is the reminder to those in power that Spanish direct democracy is still alive and has finally awakened.."

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Photo gallery: historic 19-J protests shake Spain

by Jérôme E. Roos on June 20, 2011


Madrid: Spanish Revolution Sol (Livestream)


Epaulo, if you are French Canadian, why not join the movement in Canada? Real Democracy Now Canada is committed to constructing the same type of movement built on the principles of direct democracy. Please, come on board! We could definately benefit from your knowledge of the events in Spain, and your apparent passion for the real democracy now movement. 


Facebook Group

Facebook Page



epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

#Spanishrevolution continues: #15m movement starts long marches and plans General Strike #europeanrevolution

The 15M movement has started multiple long marches from all over Spain towards Madrid, the country’s capital, geographic heart and epicentre of the current participatory democracy movement. The Eastern route from Valencia is over 500kms long and started on the June 20th. In 34 days it will pass through 29 towns and cities, where they will hold many ‘Popular Assemblies’ to explain the movement and listen to peoples demands. Yesterday the second long march began, with over 100 protesters setting off from Barcelona. Toni, one of the ‘indignants’ explained that each day they will try and walk 21kms and that they are well prepared, but “today the sun is very strong”. In many parts of Spain temperatures are currently over 30 degrees celsius, the protesters have one support vehicle, which is bringing food, water, sun screen and other medical supplies....

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Indignados start epic march to Brussels

by Jérôme E. Roos on July 27, 2011

Post image for Indignados start epic march to Brussels


Protesters walk to the heart of Europe to rally support and collect proposals in preparation of a major European-wide rally on October 15th.

“Vamos despacio porque vamos lejos” — we’re going slow because we’re going far. With that slogan, a few hundred indignados left Puerta del Sol yesterday afternoon to embark upon an epic 1,000 mile march to the heart of Europe.....


Northern Shoveler Northern Shoveler's picture

So maybe it is time to organize marches on October 15th in our cities.  We are all under the same thumbs.  

Ken Burch

And in the cities on THIS side of the border, too.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..what would be our square here in vancouver? the art gallery?

Northern Shoveler Northern Shoveler's picture

That has traditionally been the spot but I would prefer by the CBC so they would have a harder time ignoring it. 


epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Notes on the non-violence of the 15-M movement

August 5, 2011

Quote: The 15-M movement is a nonviolent movement. It is something that is so essential that it didn’t even require a decision taken in the assembly. It simply goes without saying,  it has emerged as a pure self-evident fact. We do not decide upon our DNA, we are born with it.

So strong is this “undecided decision” that no one has contravened it, despite the provocations, the evictions, the beatings. (There are other “undecided decisions” which are known to everyone: that we are a horizontal, inclusive, respectful movement, without representation, not wanting anything to do with acronyms and political parties, etc.).

Nonviolence does not mean non-conflict. We have occupied places, we have demonstrated without permission, we blocked evictions, we have thrown the police out of the neighborhoods… That is, the 15-M nonviolence is not passive, it is not compliant with the law nor has it taken on the conventional form of politics. It is active, rebellious, disobedient and creative....

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Spain’s ‘Indignados’ at the Vanguard of a Global Nonviolent Revolt

by Pablo Ouziel / August 6th, 2011

Quote: The indignation on Spanish streets has not risen out of ignorance, when newspapers announced last week that the airport of Ciudad Real had joined the growing list of airports in Spain closing because of lack of flights, the ‘indignados’ understood that it had only been constructed during the building boom so that speculators could receive huge sums of public subsidies which will never be returned to the Spanish people. That is why they were not surprised a few days ago when the IMF recommended that the country cut salaries of public servants and raise VAT, or when Spanish Finance Minister Elena Salgado suggested that the nation might need to endure even deeper spending cuts than those approved by Parliament. Nor was there a sense of surprise when the Catalan Government announced yesterday that it would sell-off 37 of its government buildings at a loss of 42,4 million Euros. Nothing shocks the ‘indignados,’ they just hope that one day they will have enough critical mass to stop these incessant attacks from the financial and political elite, on the country’s citizenry....


Hope Fades For Spain's Survival in Eurozone (and vid)

"Despite being the fourth-largest economy in Europe, Spain is definitely feeling the bite of the credit crisis. In fact some in Spain believe the best strategy in the current climate may be an exit one.."

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Andrés Jaque: 15M & YES WE CAMP! Controversy As Urbanism

August 9th, 2011


“In order to understand what happened at Madrid’s Puerta del Sol, it is important to take into account facts that have not been sufficiently considered. From the very first day, the camp has been carefully kept neat and well-ordered. Infrastructure, communication strategies, and victualling committees were created. Within them, protocols to both discuss and decide were openly negotiated. The work was administered through self-organized shifts. Protection from sun and rain were mounted and installed on site. Protesters managed the borrowing of temporary toilets and regulated the use of showers at supporting neighboring apartments. When sanitary inspectors from the municipality visited the camp, they concluded its hygienic conditions were adequate, stating: “it is swept and no waste has been found.”

Soon, the assemblies became redoubts for inclusion. If someone stated that bankers behave like “hijos de puta,” many of the participants would silently cross their arms, reproving the exclusion operated by means of language on a sex workers’ offspring. First day jeers to the banner “THE REVOLUTION WILL BE FEMINIST OR IT WON’T BE,” were responded with the programming of seminars on feminism, detailing the discussion on gender equity at the camp. Sol has not been an action, but more like a re-institutional process of daily life. A collective effort to bring ordinary urban life into politics; in which social capitals, associations, and good manners have extensively benefited from a precedent corpus of experiences and social constructions vital to make the movement possible, and that needs to be taken into account....

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

The march to Brussels: who are we, where are we going, why do we do it

Posted by carolina on 08/14/2011

We travel on foot the more than 1,500 km separating Madrid and Brussels. We will stop in Paris on September 17 to support the different actions of our comrades around the world that day. On October 8 we will arrive at  Brussels, where an intensive week of protests and discussion forums will take place and culminate with the big global event planned for October 15.

The idea of the March arose simultaneously in several places in Europe, in accordance with the normal processes of collective intelligence, and was spurred by a shared sense of duty to continue the Movement of Popular Marches. The same day the several meetings that took place in the Retiro Park in Madrid received a visit from a Nobel laureate in economics, and the proposals collected on the first stages of the March of the Indignants were presented to the Congress, we decided to set on our journey....

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Cleaning up City Squares in Democratic Spain

By Pablo Ouziel

Friday, May 27, 2011

On Friday the 27th of May, five days after an overwhelming victory by centre-right political parties in the local and regional elections across Spain, the country woke up to the bitter reality of how nonviolent movements calling for economic democracy, political justice and peace are going to be dealt with by the country’s police forces in this new era of right-wing political dominance.

Just twenty-four hours after Spain’s largest telecom company, Telefonica, announced a new round of layoffs affecting 8500 people, 25% of the work force, and as the G8 is meeting in Deauville, France, to discuss amongst other things the discontent sweeping across Europe, the Catalan police force – the Mossos d’Esquadra – following orders from the Town Hall’s new Catalan Nationalist Party (CiU) government, surrounded the nonviolent citizens camped at the Plaza Cataluña in Barcelona’s city centre. Armed with full riot gear, batons and machine-guns with rubber bullets, the police kettled in the protestors, making it impossible for them to leave or others to enter.


As soon as the police surrounded the crowds and the news aired on local television stations and radios, citizens from across the city began to leave their work places and made their way to the square in order to show their solidarity with those being harassed by the police. The scene they encountered resembled one of Gandhi’s legendary acts of civil disobedience – the demonstrators sitting on the floor, in silence, with their legs crossed and hands up in the air; symbolizing their defiance to the oppressive and brutal nature of this unannounced police action.



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Understanding ‘Spanishrevolution’

Pedro Silverio Moreno,

23 May 2011


Within Spain, the organization of these camps is striking: they work like small kibbutzim where everybody shares what they have and where the decisions are adopted by consensual agreement. Their posters carry slogans as imaginative as those from May ‘68 in Paris: “Our dreams are too big for their polls”, “I think, therefore I disturb”, “No house, no job, no retirement, no fear”, “Take the street”, “Read more”, “I am not against the system, the system is against me”, “Your booty, my crack” (Botín, the family name of the owner of the Santander Bank, the biggest Spanish bank and one of the biggest all over the world, means ‘booty’ in Spanish). Reading the slogans, you will find few complaints lodged about particular political leaders as one might have expected. Instead, people are focused on the lack of participation in decision-making processes and market tyranny over the entire political class. These protesters are by no means apolitical: they like to refer to themselves as ‘superpolitical’. The call that went out to people voting on Sunday was against abstention, explaining the differences between blank votes and null votes. Fortunately, participation in the elections has risen: an estimated 65 percent of the nation's 34 million eligible voters cast their votes in Sunday's polls.

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We have broken the silence: Fresh from Madrid, an interview with a member of the Communications team of Real Democracy NOW!

Anthony Barnett and Beatriz Pérez, 30 May 2011

This interview with Beatriz Pérez took place in the early morning of Thursday 26 May in English with additions from an interview she gave to radio Una linea sobre el mar (thanks to simultaneous translation by Mayte Carrasco). It was checked and finalised by Beatriz on Saturday 28 May.

How are you feeling?

Tired but happy. I feel I am living in history, that I am part of something really important: that is bringing hope to people, that gives you a real feeling of doing something worthy that you need to fight for. I want to explain how I have been very moved, it is like a collective act of love, as if the universe has given me a present.

Everyone wants change from what we have. It is in the nature of being human that we should. I had been worried about the silence of Spanish society. But what could anyone do?  We needed to express ourselves as citizens, but how? To assume our proper nature we had to break the silence....