Progressive Calendar 09.05.09
From: David Shove (shove001tc.umn.edu)
Date: Sat, 5 Sep 2009 07:29:49 -0700 (PDT)
              P R O G R E S S I V E   C A L E N D A R   09.05.09

1. Peace walk        9.05 9am Cambridge MN
2. Workplace justice 9.05 10am
3. Northtown vigil   9.05 2pm
4. Iglooing          9.05 2pm
5. Iran/CTV          9.05 9pm

6. Stillwater vigil  9.06 1pm
7. Barter market     9.06 1pm
8. Single payer      9.06 3pm
9. Peace walk        9.06 6pm RiverFalls WI
10. Mom/prison       9.06 6:30pm

11. John V Walsh - Obama to Cindy Sheehan: get lost
12. Don Fitz     - Biodevastation 7: what the police won't apologize for

--------1 of 12--------

From: Ken Reine <reine008 [at] umn.edu>
Subject: Peace walk 9.05 9am Cambridge MN

every Saturday 9AM to 9:35AM
Peace walk in Cambridge - start at Hwy 95 and Fern Street


--------2 of 12--------

From: Erin Parrish <erin [at] mnwomen.org>
Subject: Workplace justice 9.05 10am

September 5: Workplace Justice Support/Networking Meeting. 10 AM - Noon at
Minnesota Women's Building, 550 Rice Street, St. Paul. For more
information call 952-996-9291.


--------3 of 12--------

From: Vanka485 [at] aol.com
Subject: Northtown vigil 9.05 2pm

Peace vigil at Northtown (Old Hwy 10 & University Av), every Saturday
2-3pm


--------4 of 12--------

From: "Susan Hensel Design,LLC" <Susan_Hensel_Design_LLC [at] mail.vresp.com>
Subject: Iglooing 9.05 2pm

Susan Hensel Gallery
the performance by Andrea Miller is this Saturday, September 5, 2-5pm
HOW TO BUILD AN IGLOO?
Performance Artist Emerges from Metaphysical Igloo
performance, Sept 5, 2-5pm

Miller's performance, which will be recorded and incorporated into the
installation that is opening on the 18th, will begin on Saturday,
September 5th at Susan Hensel Gallery at 2 p.m. The public is invited to
view the performance, However, the performance may run long, and viewers
are encouraged to come and go as they please between 2 and 5pm.

Using sod, Miller will transform the gallery space into a grassy nest of
sorts. Then, protecting herself only with a blanket that she has woven
from pieces of charcoal, Miller will cover herself with ice and let it
gradually melt and dissolve into the sod. As the ice, the charcoal, and
the dirt mix together, blackened water will seep out from beneath her as a
janitor patiently mops it up and wrings it into a bucket. What remains in
the bucket will symbolize the mark that Miller has left upon the Earth;a
measurement of the impact she has made on her environment.

The installation, opening September 18 with a reception, will use footage
from the performance as well as individual elements, such as specimen-jars
of the blackened water, petri dishes, test tubes, etc. "I really want to
allude to a mood of some strange kind of scientific discovery," says
Miller of what she hopes her audience will take away. "I want them to feel
that it's, in some ways, an archeological experience."

Susan Hensel Gallery 3441 Cedar Avenue Minneapolis, MN 55407


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From: Eric Angell <eric-angell [at] riseup.net>
Subject: Iran/CTV 9.05 9pm

Mighty Minneapolis Television Network (MTN) viewers:
"Our World In Depth" cablecasts on MTN Channel 17 on Saturdays at 9pm and
Tuesdays at 8am, after DemocracyNow!  Households with basic cable may
watch.

Saturday, 9/5, 9pm and Tues, 9/8, 8am
Iran: What Lies in the Future?

Guest: Professor William Beeman, Chair of Anthropology at the U of Minnesota
Professor Beeman speaks in depth about Iran, the country perhaps most
scrutinized by pundits in the US media and yet a nation whose history,
politics and culture is still not well known or understood.  Learn about
current cultural changes happening there as well as Iran's complex
political structure.  (8/09)


--------6 of 12--------

From: scot b <earthmannow [at] comcast.net>
Subject: Stillwater vigil 9.06 1pm

A weekly Vigil for Peace Every Sunday, at the Stillwater bridge from 1- 2
p.m.  Come after Church or after brunch ! All are invited to join in song
and witness to the human desire for peace in our world. Signs need to be
positive.  Sponsored by the St. Croix Valley Peacemakers.

If you have a United Nations flag or a United States flag please bring it.
Be sure to dress for the weather . For more information go to
<http://www.stcroixvalleypeacemakers.com/>http://www.stcroixvalleypeacemakers.com/

For more information you could call 651 275 0247 or 651 999 - 9560


--------7 of 12--------

From: Eric Angell <eric-angell [at] riseup.net>
Subject: Barter market 9.06 1pm

The Midway Barter Market, every Sunday, 1-3 pm, boulevard in front of 1724
Englewood Ave.  Barter Market on Wednesdays at SuperUSA are cancelled.
Community Gathering and Exchange at the "Midway Barter Market"!  Bring
something to share if you can; we've seen CSA and urban farm produce, jam,
bread, fruits, homemade candles and soap, jewelry, cassette tapes,
clothes, anything that's in good condition that someone else may want.
Labor exchanges are good too (i.e. I will fix your bike if you make me
lunch).  It's an informal gathering that's lots of fun, and you get to
take home stuff you want that someone else has too much of.  A folding
chair and maybe a folding table are good to bring, or even just a blanket
for the boulevard.  Contact Nine at mightymidway [at] gmail.com or 651.319.2241
with questions, or Kathy at kathysphotos [at] mindspring.com or 651.645.1492.


--------8 of 12--------

From: "Of the People" <info [at] jamesmayer.org>
Subject: Single payer 9.06 3pm

James Mayer Getting the Real Information to the Real Boss, the People:

Joel Albers of the Universal Health Care Action Network of MN & James
Mayer the MN State Fair this Sunday, 3PM on Of the People
AM950ktnf or:  www.am950ktnf
Sunday, September 6, 2009

Everybody in, nobody out except the health care profiteers.
As we noted in our last edition, We The People have Single Payer Health
Care (HR676 - Medicare for all of us) more within our reach now than ever
before.   We have 2 time-sensitive opportunities right now, to push on to
a victory for Single Payer which you can check on in Numbers, II, and
III, below:

I. Minnesota may end up leading the way in health care once again while we
wait for and push for National (real Single Payer) Health Care, held up by
congressmen and senators doing the bidding of big insurance and corporate
medicine and selling the lie that alienates us from one another: that we
cannot afford health care for all of us.

But we can!

In Minnesota we have the Minnesota Health Act--everybody in; nobody out,
except the health care profiteers--authored by Senator John Marty, who
may well become the next Governor of Minnesota.

Help us bring the truth about Health Care and hope to all Of The People.
Join us and bring everybody out to AM950's booth to talk to health care
activist Joel Albers on Of the People at the Minnesota State Fair this
Sunday, if you are in the area on Sept. 6, 2009 at 3 p.m. or tune into
AM950 KTNF (formerly Air America Minnesota).  If you're out of the
broadcast area, stream us at www.am950ktnf.com/listen.


--------9 of 12-------

From: Nancy Holden <d.n.holden [at] comcast.net>
Subject: Peace walk 9.06 6pm RiverFalls WI

River Falls Peace and Justice Walkers. We meet every Monday from 6-7 pm on
the UWRF campus at Cascade Ave. and 2nd Street, immediately across from
"Journey" House. We walk through the downtown of River Falls. Contact:
d.n.holden [at] comcast.net. Douglas H Holden 1004 Morgan Road River Falls,
Wisconsin 54022


--------10 of 12--------

From: Lydia Howell <lydiahowell [at] visi.com>
Subject: Mom/prison 9.06 6:30pm

SUNDAY SEPT. 6: CABARET for ISIS RISING/Support for MOthers in MN Prisons
Cabaret to raise money and awareness. The event will be opened by the
KetzalCoatlicue Aztec Dancers and will include local spoken word
artists Desdamona, Rush Merchant, and Ellen Hinchecliffe. Musicians
will include Mankwe Ndosi, Alicia Steele, and the Flamenco Dance group
Las Zapatistas. DJ Boomchick will end the night by spinning records
for a dance party to celebrate this work! Hosted by the Bedlam
Theatre, 1501 S. 6th St, Mpls. Suggested donation $10-$15. Sunday
September 6, 6:30 pm. Please join us!

For more information about Isis Rising or this event: megdoula [at] yahoo.com
Contact: 612.251.1746


--------11 of 12--------

With Cindy in Martha's Vineyard
Obama to Cindy Sheehan: Get Lost
By JOHN V. WALSH
CounterPunch
September 4-6, 2009

I spent but a short time with Cindy Sheehan as she carried her antiwar
protest from an earlier time at Crawford, TX, to Martha's Vineyard,
vacation spot for Obama and many other Democrat Party elite.  As Cindy
remarked, the real story was not that she was protesting Obama's wars but
that the "leadership" of the peace movement did not support her protest.
When the target was Bush in Crawford, she was all the rage with antiwar
celebrities, but not so now that the target is Barack Obama.  While there
is considerable enthusiasm for her anti-Obama protest on the part of the
rank and file in the anti-war movement, a refusal of its "leaders" to
notify their members far and wide, high and low, crippled the action.

As a result of this betrayal, the numbers at Martha's Vineyard were not
large.  But Cindy and her fellow anti-warriors were undeterred.  While I
was there, she mounted a spirited march down the road to Obama's place, no
more than a quarter mile away from where she stayed.  The purpose was to
present the President with a poster of Cindy bearing a signed plea to end
the wars.  The considerable armed force at the gate and the Secret Service
officers would not even bring out the lowliest of staffers to receive the
poster.  Clearly the message from Obama was "Get lost, Cindy". And we were
quickly told to move a considerable distance down the road. At least in
Crawford it had been possible to demonstrate at the checkpoint to the site
- not so at Obama's place.  Thus, did Obama greet a mother whose son was
lost in the wars, which he continues and enlarges by the day.

The site chosen by Obama for his vacation appeared restful, even idyllic,
that afternoon though the house itself was a considerable distance away
from the road, hidden from view.  But the image of the "antiwar" candidate
lounging comfortably by the ocean, his family nearby, while ordering the
deaths, by drones and assorted other killing instruments, of people half a
world away, complete innocents, unknown to this man or his advisers, was
disturbing indeed.  What sort of man could do this?  Does Obama bring his
much ballyhooed "coolness" down a degree or two for cold blooded murder?
Are these wars a matter of conscience or patriotism for Obama?  If that
were so, does one suppose in a future imperial war that Obama will urge
his daughters to volunteer to die in some Muslim land any more than did
Bush offer his daughters?  Is there no shame to this poltician, Obama, who
rose to high office on the yearning of so many for peace?  How long will
we allow the soothing words of this latter day Elmer Gantry to cover up
his deeds?

Despite the silence of the antiwar misleaders, news of Cindy Sheehan's
presence did make the rounds of Cape Cod and the Islands.  And who knows
but that it might have gone further.  Was Obama going to be caught
unprepared?  A cynic or a realist, or merely someone familiar with the
Obama PR machine, might be pardoned for thinking that a plan was in place
- and executed in the form of an anti-Cindy mom.  And so it came to pass
that, while there was no time for Cindy, the Obamas did make it a point to
pay a highly publicized visit to another mom, Lisa X, who had lost her son
in Obama's AfPak war.  This young man Obama had happened to encounter
earlier this year at Camp Lejeune. The Cape Cod Times reported the meeting
thus:

So, yesterday afternoon, the family drove from Yarmouthport to Coast Guard
Air Station Cape Cod.  They waited about two hours at the base... The
Obamas entered... President Obama called them all by their first names,
Lisa said. "It was like seeing a friend you hadn't seen in a couple
months," Lisa said of the nearly 10-minute meeting...

President Obama offered his condolences.  "He told us whatever decisions
he makes, he has Nick (and others serving) in mind," Lisa said.  Earlier
this year, Nicholas X met President Obama and shook his hand. The
president gave a speech at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina.  Shortly after,
Nicholas decided he wanted to be part of the new offensive in Afghanistan,
his father told the Times in July.

Lisa said her son called her right after the meeting.  "He shook his
(President Obama's) hand and called me moments later and said, 'Mom, the
President was amazing, his hand was the softest thing I've ever touched,
like a baby's bottom,'" Lisa recalled.

She made sure to tell President Obama that yesterday, drawing a laugh from
him.  Lisa X said her family is "still pretty numb and raw" over losing
Nicholas.  But she thought of his likely reaction to the family meeting
the Obamas.  "He is probably laughing hysterically ... and proud."

Such an account should break your heart and stir your anger at this
hypocritical politician.  The more so if, as one might suspect, this
encounter made cynical use of this grieving woman's trust.  That soft hand
of Obama's is soaked in considerable blood now, some of it Nicholas X's,
no less than the rough hands of Bush and Cheney.  Obama's message is
clear.  Sacrifice your child and endure without complaint the "numb and
raw" emotions that come of your grief.  And then Barack Obama will glad
hand you for "nearly ten minutes" and get some good press - after you cool
your heels for two hours awaiting the cool, great man.  But protest the
senseless death of your son, and you get the bum's rush at Obama's gate.
Thus, does the erstwhile "antiwar candidate" (How silly that phrase sounds
now!) treat Cindy Sheehan whose like he once called on to join him in
making peace.  And the "leaders" of the antiwar movement are nowhere to be
seen or heard.

John V. Walsh can be reached at John.Endwar [at] gmail.com


--------12 of 12--------

The Case of the Biodevastation 7
What the Police Won't Apologize For
By DON FITZ
CounterPunch
September 4-6, 2009

In early September, St. Louis police will send an apology for their
illegal arrest of biodiversity activists.  Be assured that it will not
mention their role in destroying public dialogue on dangers of genetically
contaminated food.

On August 24, 2009, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Eastern
Missouri announced that the St. Louis Board of Police Commissioners would
pay $13,500 to each of four anti-genetic engineering activists for
violating their first and fourth amendment rights and would apologize to
them for police actions in May, 2003. [1]  That was when several hundred
people gathered to protest the World Agricultural Forum [WAF] and hold the
7th Biodevastation Gathering to expose the racist use of genetic
engineering in agriculture.

But the letter of apology is highly unlikely to address the most serious
aspects of the repression.  Do not expect the letter to say anything about
helping to consolidate control of world agriculture and throwing 1 billion
people off of small farms.  Don't look for the letter to mention the role
of police in attempts to force genetically contaminated food on Africans
with immuno-compromised health.  And don't be surprised if the letter
contains not a word about St. Louis police entering into a conspiracy with
Monsanto, the FBI and corporate media to eliminate public discussion of
the potential threats of genetically modified organisms (GMOs).

St. Louis police were not stand-alone players.  As Daniel (digger) Romano
wrote in the August 31 St. Louis Post-Dispatch "Allied Intelligence [is]
the private security agency hired by the WAF and its principle player,
Monsanto, the biotech giant.  Allied Intelligence told police '50,000
anarchists' were coming to St. Louis to riot and wreak havoc on the city".
[2]

The police apology will certainly misdirect attention onto its own illegal
and repulsive behavior of May, 2003: warrantless entry into a home where a
woman was subjected to "an unlawful and humiliating strip search," a
second warrantless entry under the false claim of the building being
condemned, and arresting several activists for "riding a bicycle without a
license," a crime which did not exist. [1]

                        Under the FBI Eye

Preparations for the Biodevastation 7 Gathering started in 2002 when Jim
Scheff, an organizer for the Missouri Forest Alliance, called to tell me
that the WAF would be meeting in St. Louis the upcoming year.  He
suggested that Biodevastation, which had been held in five cities after
beginning in St. Louis in 1998, return to Monsanto's home town so that
people coming to WAF could hear a different view of biotechnology.

Documents obtained by the ACLU under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)
show that the FBI was deeply involved in scrutinizing many documents that
I wrote for the event, including emails from my computer.  The ACLU judged
the FBI reports to be some "of the most troubling documents we received".
[3]

A November 2005 cover letter from the FBI refers to "Subject: GATEWAY
GREEN ALLIANCE/01012000 TO PRESENT," indicating that we had been in FBI
sights for years.  [4] Its first memo on "Counterterrorism" asserted that
"The WAF was created to provide a continuing, neutral arena for the
discussion of world agriculture". Counterposed to the "neutral" WAF, the
memo warned of "issue-specific terrorist groups which oppose the
bio-engineering of plants and animals".  [5]

What particularly worried authors of the memo was that "organizers from
the Gateway Green Alliance, a local affiliate of the Green Party USA, have
joined with member of the Organization for Black Struggle in St. Louis and
are attempting to label the WAF as a 'forum on environmental racism' in an
attempt to lure African-American groups". [5]  (The authors probably meant
to say "Biodevastation" rather than "WAF".)

The memo observed that "no specific threats of violence or unlawful
protest have been received".  But its authors were disturbed that "protest
organizers" might be "able to successfully promote a racial element to the
forum". [5]

Other FBI counterterrorism documents listed frightening people who hoped
to speak at St. Louis, including Vandana Shiva, Percy Schmeiser, Mae-Wan
Ho, Brian Tokar, Ignacio Chapela and Michael Hansen. [6]  Any defender of
the Public Order must have been horrified to read in the captured
documents of the threat to national security posed by the Caravan Across
the Continent held in conjunction with Biodevastation: "The Caravan will
be a month-long bicycle spectacle covering over 1000 puppet shows,
presentations, speak-outs, freak-outs, clown acts, and music".  It invited
"citizens, clowns, puppeteers, bike riders, messengers, farmers" and urged
everyone "to bring a bicycle and join the ride!" [7]

The FBI was most traumatized by information that "The May 2003
Biodevastation Gathering will be the cutting edge event defining links
between racism and the biotechnology industry".  Documents monitored by
its sleuths uncovered plans for the event to "focus attention on efforts"
to use "Food Aide as a weapon of narrow economic interests and to force
genetically contaminated food on Africa". [5]

Luckily, the FBI did not stand alone in efforts to protect good citizens.
FOIA reports confirm that the FBI had "been working with local police
agencies to collect intelligence related to the WAF". [7]  Not content to
rely on local police, the FBI proudly documented collaboration with the
private sector:

Corporate officials from Monsanto who monitor the Biodev website
(www.biodev.org) allege that the speakers at the Biodev conference are
against genetic engineering of any type, that they are outspoken critics
of Monsanto and are extreme in their views. [7]

                    A Public Dialogue Cut Short

During weeks prior to Biodevastation 7, there were a few stories about the
dangers of GMOs, but St. Louis media focused on police preparation for
50,000 anarchists to invade downtown.  They warned business owners to
protect their property.

Then, on the opening day of Biodevastation 7, the Mother of All Horrors
occurred: There was an actual public debate on genetic engineering!  The
only St. Louis daily paper, the Post-Dispatch, carried a front page story,
"Focus on the future of agriculture". It had an article describing the
corporate view of the WAF on one side and another article reporting on
Biodevastation on the other.

Not to worry.  St. Louis police, with backup from the FBI and Monsanto,
had worked overtime to ensure that reporting would take a sharp turn.
Shortly after I got to the Gathering site and prepared to coordinate
presentations, phone calls began pouring in that demonstrators were being
arrested all over town.

Members of the Flying Rutabaga Bicycle Circus were arrested for the
fictitious crime of "riding a bicycle without a license". About the same
time, a building inspector nailed a "condemned" sign on a St. Louis home
just before police pushed through the door and arrested those who had been
planning to take part in weekend protests.  They were charged with
"inhabiting a condemned building".

Two hours later, police raided the Community Arts and Media Project (CAMP)
building, which housed the St. Louis Independent Media Center, Green Party
of St. Louis and several other groups, taking more to jail. Sarah Bantz,
organizer for Missouri Resistance Against Genetic Engineering (MoRAGE),
which was coordinating the demonstration planned at the WAF, was pulled
over while driving to give a talk at the Gathering.  Her vitamin A was
seized as a possible illegal drug and she was taken to jail for not
wearing a seatbelt.

As I tried to make sure that speakers (minus Sarah Bantz) were there, that
panels could start on time, and that lunches were on their way, I was
called by one reporter after another.  With the lurid drama rivaled only
by stories of a US politician whose weenie went where it wasn't supposed
to go, corporate media had turned on a dime.  Dangers of genetic
engineering were far from their minds as reporters drooled at the prospect
of a story on demonstrator violence.

Police Chief Mokwa egged on the frenzy.  He held a press conference to
display the "weapons" seized during the raids: rocks, roofing nails,
torches and Molotov cocktails.

By the next day, it became apparent that the rocks were paperweights; the
roofing nails were to repair a leaky roof; and the torches were flaming
batons of the Bicycle Circus. When the St. Louis Independent Media Center
website posted an eyewitness report of a cop putting toilet paper or a rag
in a beer bottle, all press reports of "Molotov cocktails" disappeared .
as if they had never been mentioned. The "weapons" charges were the first
charges dropped against those arrested.

Of course, throughout the events, the only potential violence discussed
was that of demonstrators. When reporters asked me about potential
violence, I never hesitated to point out that "There is a real threat of
lawlessness when the WAF is controlled by Monsanto, a company that
lawlessly trespasses on the land of farmers like Percy Schmeiser,
criminally steals samples of crops and violently drops pesticide bombs on
their fields to test if their crops are Roundup-resistant".

Reporters would tell me that that was not what was meant.  They wanted to
know if there was a threat of violence during the demonstration set for
May 18.  I always responded "Yes, there is a real threat of violence. When
public safety is put in the hands of a police chief who has condoned the
police murder of over a dozen black youth in recent years, the city should
be concerned".

Predictably, the press had zero interest in reporting on corporate or
state violence.  Their prewritten script was to interview one side
predicting that demonstrators would be violent and "balance" it with a few
seconds of an organizer denying the charge.

                           Police Attacks

Police attacks on protestors were illegal, traumatic and disruptive to
planned events.  Kelley Meister wrote in detail of her ordeal.  The night
before her home was invaded, "police had been circling our house
relentlessly, following my friends home, and harassing them on the street,
and I had feared waking up to the police knocking down my door". [8]
After breakfast the next morning, a police car pulled up.

Two police officers pushed past me to enter the house, and I asked if they
had a warrant.  When they said, "No," I stated that I did not give them
permission to enter my house, and I again asked for a warrant.  The
officers told me that a warrant was not necessary because this was a
condemned building. [8]

After being arrested and put in a police van, Meister
"watched many cops enter and exit our house, most notably, an officer
carrying a piece of art ripped down off the wall from my room.  The cops
also stole many other people's personal items such as journals, posters,
props for the circus and puppet shows, welding tools, roofing nails, and
all of our bicycles that were in the building.  The bicycles were
eventually returned with slashed tires, but most of the other stuff that
was stolen is either "missing" or being held as evidence. [8]

When allowed to return home several days later, she found

The house was trashed.  In my bedroom, shelves had been disassembled or
knocked over, boxes of oil paints and other art supplies dumped out, my
large reading chair was on its side and in the middle of the room,
personal items were smashed, and a pile of my clothes that had been dumped
from a small cabinet. [8]

[Notice it is only RICH people's property that is untouchable and holy. In
that context, "property" means "rich people/ruling class". Non-rich people
just have "stuff", not holy "property", and so IT can be trashed, stolen
or pissed on by CroMagnon cops. There are real people - the rich - and
then there's us - expendable, rightless, trashable. And of course we saw
it here at the RNC in St Paul last year. This is class war, with a
vengeance. -ed]

Meister and a housemate found "their clothes were drenched in urine,"
compliments of St. Louis police. [9] When it apologizes for
"well-intentioned mistakes," the St. Louis Board of Police Commissioners
should explain how urinating on clothes is both well-intentioned and a
mistake.

                  What Corporate Media Didn't Report

By the second day of Biodevastation 7, the mania had died down. The
Post-Dispatch was even mildly critical of what it called "pre-emptive"
arrests. But the press never returned to a discussion of how genetic
engineering threatens human health, pollutes the environment, and prepares
for agro-business domination of Africa. What remained was a debate of
whether the police had "overreacted".

Two photographs from the Fall 2003 Synthesis/Regeneration illustrate the
bizarre unreality of the police/media fantasy.  The back cover has a photo
of the main post office in downtown St. Louis, which was boarded up to
protect it from marauding anarchist hordes.  On p. 2 is a photo of a
security guard with so little to do at Biodevastation 7 that she is
playing with the children of those listening to talks.

Though the PATRIOT Act made crackdowns at events like Biodevastation 7
easier, such actions existed long before 9-11.  The hysteria generated by
police departments is reminiscent of "red scares" of the 1920s and phobic
reaction to black organizing that white Americans have felt through the
centuries. When Jamala Rogers of the Organization for Black Struggle
introduced the Environmental Racism panel at Biodevastation 7, the police
raids were at the top of the news.  She commented that "You are seeing
what black people in St. Louis experience on a daily basis".

One of the vitally important presentations that police raids knocked out
of media attention was that by Mwananyanda Lewanika of Zambia's National
Institute for Scientific & Industrial Research.  The previous year, US
trade representatives had bitterly denounced Zambia for rejecting
genetically engineered (GE) corn to feed its hungry.  Lewanika traced the
origin of hunger in Zambia to the Structural Adjustment Program of the
1990s that "stopped government involvement in agricultural production".
[10]  With government assistance gone, small farmers in southern Zambia
could not meet the food needs of their region.  Since there was an
abundance of food in the northern part of the country, the West could have
helped Zambia improve the infrastructure of roads.

But that would have made Zambia more independent of the West rather than
dependent on it.  So the US offered to donate surplus GE corn.  Zambian
scientists replied that (a) GE corn might contain food toxins or
allergens, (b) effects would be particularly serious in Zambia since corn
comprised up to 80% of the diet, and (c) effects would be most severe on
the most vulnerable - the young, old and immuno-compromised, which is a
large population in southern Africa.  Though plenty of non-GE corn was
available and could have been donated, the US insisted on offering only
the corn that was offensive to Zambians and then denounced them for not
accepting it. [10]

                          Marching Onward

By shifting attention to a manufactured threat of terrorism, the hysteria
ensured that discussion of efforts to force GE corn on Africa would not
reach public awareness.  This puts the six year old belated apology by the
St. Louis Police Department (SLPD) in a different light.

The St. Louis Board of Police Commissioners claimed that the raids were a
"mistake" even though police acted "with well intentions". [9]  The 2009
apology spins the myth that the SLPD acted on its own volition.

But the FBI documents paint a very different picture.  They suggest that
the most likely course of events was:

A. The Monsanto/WAF/Allied Intelligence troika contacted.

B. the FBI, which contacted.

C. the SLPD, which pumped fantasies to.

D. the St. Louis media, which eliminated a nascent dialogue on GMOs and
focused exclusively on the illusory anarchist invasion.

Far from being the key culprit, the SLPD was targeted to take the rap.  It
was a pawn in a far bigger game of using genetic engineering to destroy
small farmers across the globe.

Describing police activities during 2003 as "mistakes" continues the
campaign of misinformation.  Their attacks were no "mistake".  They were a
vital element in shifting the public eye away from what agribusiness
planned for Africa, Asia and Latin America.

Anyone who seriously believes actions by the SLPD were mistakes should let
us know how often police departments invade offices such as Monsanto World
Headquarters, piss on tuxedos of corporate executives, steal their
electronic equipment, tell the press to print front page stories of
corporate terrorists, and arrest corporate officers for possession of
vitamin A.

If 100% of such police attacks are against those resisting corporate power
and 0% of police violence is against corporations, then a reasonable
person might conclude that the function of police is to protect corporate
power.  This is quite a bit different from accounts of the police being a
neutral party that occasionally makes the "mistake" of "preemptive"
attacks.

We should applaud each of the plaintiffs against the SLPD receiving
$13,500.  But rather than clearing the air, the police apology serves to
further mystify the 2003 web of intrigues.  For the corporations that move
pawns around, the 2009 apology is merely a tiny step backward in their
continuing march to subjugate world agriculture.

Don Fitz is editor of Synthesis/Regeneration: A Magazine of Green Social
Thought, which is published for members of The Greens/Green Party USA.  If
you know of where to find a horde of 50,000 anarchists, please contact him
at fitzdon [at] aol.com

Notes

1. American Civil Liberties Union of Eastern Missouri. (August 24, 2009).
ACLU applauds police apology to protestors. Press Release.

2. Daniel (digger) Romano.  (August 31, 2009). Letter to the Editor, St.
Louis Post-Dispatch, p. A11.

3. American Civil Liberties Union of Eastern Missouri. (Janaury 27, 2006).
Letter to Barbara Chicherio and Don Fitz.

4. Federal Bureau of Investigation. (November 15, 2005). Letter to Denise
D. Lieberman, American Civil Liberties Union. FOIPA No. 1021258-000.

5. Federal Bureau of Investigation. (April 9, 2003). Counterterrorism
memo. Case ID No: 300A-SL-188478.

6. Federal Bureau of Investigation. (May 8, 2003). Counterterrorism memo.
Case ID No: 300A-SL-188478.

7. Federal Bureau of Investigation. (April 15, 2003). Counterterrorism
memo. Case ID No: 300A-SL-188478.

8. Kelley Meister. (Fall, 2003). Report from the Bolozone.
Synthesis/Regeneration, 32, pp. 5.7.

9. Patrick O.Connell. (August 25, 2009). City police apologize for raids
in 2003.  St. Louis Post-Dispatch, pp. A1, A9.

10. Mwananyanda Lewanika. (Fall, 2003). The real story behind the food
crisis in Zambia. Synthesis/Regeneration, 32, pp. 12.14.


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