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Daily Archives: 04/04/2011

(indymediacalling) On April 2, two different groups of people went to a small village Hejőszalonta (near Miskolc, ca. 160 km east from Budapest). The first one went there to make a “Demonstration against Gypsy Terror”. This group of people mostly dressed in black Hungarian Guard uniform consisted from right-wing representatives of Hungarian society including far right Jobbik party representatives. A lot of local people from Hejőszalonta joined them. The second group consisted of Roma rights activists, anti-racists and other civilians, a big part of whom were foreigners, who are willing to stand up against neo-nazi terror spreading out in the country. There were also the representatives of Amnesty International and TASZ.

The right-wing group registered a commemoration walk with candles in order to commemorate the recently murdered woman who was a victim of a Gypsy crime according to Jobbik. This woman was murdered on March 6 by her tenant who was living at her place for about a week. The murderer turned out to be a Gypsy. He is said to be caught by the police already. So, this murder was a good opportunity for the far right to burn another village with hatred towards Roma people, so they decided to make a demonstration in Hejőszalonta. Anti-racist civilians and Roma rights activists from Budapest decided to prevent the far right from marching and harrasing the local Roma community and to protect the latter, so they also decided to make a peaceful people’s chain in Hejőszalonta. As Jobbik registered their march earlier, it was impossible to register a counter demo, a people’s chain in the same place, so at the end the situation turned out to be as follows: the anti-racist civilians together with the local Roma people had an opportunity to make a peaceful demo in a different place divided from the far right demo buy the police cordon.

Around 100 anti-racist activists went to Hejőszalonta from Budapest. We arrived there shortly after 5. At the entrance of the village the police was checking everyone’s IDs and asking to which demo people were going in order to direct cars of the far right and anti-racists to different directions in order to provide security. So, the whole village (at the entrance you can see the board telling that this is a EUROPEAN VILLAGE – how pathetic – a far-right march in an EUROPEAN village in 2011, are we coming back to WW II times?) was flooded by the police. As we arrived to the place where the anti-racist demo was registered, it was pretty overcrowded by the activists, media and some local Roma people. All together there were around 200 persons there.

It turned out that the people’s chain is impossible to form in order to prevent the far right from marching, so the people were just standing there, having some speeches and listening to the music. The activists were talking to the locals, sharing some food they brought, making transparencies and just walking around the limited space. Among the speakers there were some Romani activists who made inspiring speeches about situation with far right in Hungary, racism and Roma.

The mayor of the village Joseph Anderkó held a neutral speech that condemned the crime in general, and he also stated that Gypsies and non-Gypsy inhabitants of the village are at peace. Unfortunately, this is not true any more. Later on we talked to some local Gypsy families, and they told that before there were no major problems among Gypsy and non-Gypsy population, but the far-right demo “against Gypsy crime” put the start to the greater division, as a lot of locals joined it. A Roma woman told that her best friend (non-Roma friend) is taking part in the far-right march on the other side of the fence.

Around 8 the far-right march approached the peaceful anti-racist demo. To understand the situation better, it is important to know that the far-right people with torches and Jobbik and Arpad flags were marching in the streets of Hejőszalonta from ca. 5 until 9-30 with the culmination at the house of the murdered woman. Their route was perpendicular to the street where the anti-racist demo took place. So, we could see the far-right chain of people coming from the right. As they approached the place where the anti-racist demo was, they started shouting some anti-Roma slogans, and the demonstrators on the other side were shouting “Nazi go Home” (as it was also written on one of the banners).

Among the far-right marchers we could see a lot of representatives of the Hungarian guard, as well as local people including old ladies and small kids. As the anti-Roma chain went away, people were still staying for a while until 9-30, and then the activists went home to Budapest, and the local Roma went to their homes.

There was no violence, everything went pretty peaceful, but at the same time this evening revealed who is who in the village, as it was the first event of this kind there. Now it is up to the local community to deal with the co-existence of Roma and non-Roma people in the village.

Source: http://indymediacall.blogspot.com/2011/04/hejoszalonta.html

(amnesty.org) The detention of China’s most famous artist and political critic Ai Weiwei is a troubling development in a widening crackdown on dissent which has seen dozens of activists detained over the last few months, Amnesty International said today.

Police detained Ai Weiwei at Beijing airport on 3 April.  His wife and several members of his studio staff were also briefly detained on the weekend.

“Ai Weiwei was not even involved in any call for ‘Jasmine’ protests.  There seems to be no reason whatsoever for his detention, other than that the authorities are trying to broadcast the message that China’s time for open dissent has come to an end,” said Sam Zarifi, Amnesty International’s Director for the Asia-Pacific.

Since online calls for Chinese ‘Jasmine Revolution’ protests inspired by people’s movements in the Middle East and North Africa began circulating in late February, the Chinese authorities have rounded up dozens of activists, lawyers and bloggers.

“We’ve already seen the chilling effect the ‘Jasmine Revolution’-related arrests have had on Chinese activists and netizens over the past month. Holding Ai Weiwei takes this to another level,” said Sam Zarifi.

“If the authorities are so bold as to grab this world-renowned artist in broad daylight at Beijing airport, it’s frightening to think how they might treat other, lesser known dissidents.”

(anarchistnews.org) Spring has come and it’s time for a new torrent bundle. Get it  here:
http://theanarchistlibrary.org/docs/TheAnarchistLibrary-2011-04-stable.torrent

The torrent ships a DVD with a full mirror of the library, including source, code, everything at all (about 1500 texts), packed in an ISO image (2.1 Gb). See this page if you need help:
http://bookshelf.theanarchistlibrary.org/TheAnarchistLibraryOnTorrent

This release features some improvements, which reflect the changes on the site over these months:

  • the PDF design slightly changed. Their quality has been boosted, and the plain A4 and the plain letter paper formats now actually ship a A5 and half letter paper, so they can printed side by side. Seehttp://bookshelf.theanarchistlibrary.org/PDF%20formats%20explained if you feel lost
  • there is an experimental “reverse citation” search on each page (bottom right of the HTML page for each text), which will try to find who cited or referred that text. From there you can then refine the results. On the DVD the links point to the site, as the Edit and Search links. So hopefully if you find problems you’ll come back to us and help fix them.

 

Source: http://www.anarchistnews.org/?q=node/14371

(guardian.co.uk) As the violence spread, billions of dollars of cartel cash began to seep into the global financial system. But a special investigation by the Observer reveals how the increasingly frantic warnings of one London whistleblower were ignored

On 10 April 2006, a DC-9 jet landed in the port city of Ciudad del Carmen, on the Gulf of Mexico, as the sun was setting. Mexican soldiers, waiting to intercept it, found 128 cases packed with 5.7 tons of cocaine, valued at $100m. But something else – more important and far-reaching – was discovered in the paper trail behind the purchase of the plane by the Sinaloa narco-trafficking cartel.

During a 22-month investigation by agents from the US Drug Enforcement Administration, the Internal Revenue Service and others, it emerged that the cocaine smugglers had bought the plane with money they had laundered through one of the biggest banks in the United States: Wachovia, now part of the giant Wells Fargo.

The authorities uncovered billions of dollars in wire transfers, traveller’s cheques and cash shipments through Mexican exchanges into Wachovia accounts. Wachovia was put under immediate investigation for failing to maintain an effective anti-money laundering programme. Of special significance was that the period concerned began in 2004, which coincided with the first escalation of violence along the US-Mexico border that ignited the current drugs war.

Criminal proceedings were brought against Wachovia, though not against any individual, but the case never came to court. In March 2010, Wachovia settled the biggest action brought under the US bank secrecy act, through the US district court in Miami. Now that the year’s “deferred prosecution” has expired, the bank is in effect in the clear. It paid federal authorities $110m in forfeiture, for allowing transactions later proved to be connected to drug smuggling, and incurred a $50m fine for failing to monitor cash used to ship 22 tons of cocaine.

More shocking, and more important, the bank was sanctioned for failing to apply the proper anti-laundering strictures to the transfer of $378.4bn – a sum equivalent to one-third of Mexico’s gross national product – into dollar accounts from so-called casas de cambio (CDCs) in Mexico, currency exchange houses with which the bank did business.

“Wachovia’s blatant disregard for our banking laws gave international cocaine cartels a virtual carte blanche to finance their operations,” said Jeffrey Sloman, the federal prosecutor. Yet the total fine was less than 2% of the bank’s $12.3bn profit for 2009. On 24 March 2010, Wells Fargo stock traded at $30.86 – up 1% on the week of the court settlement.

The conclusion to the case was only the tip of an iceberg, demonstrating the role of the “legal” banking sector in swilling hundreds of billions of dollars – the blood money from the murderous drug trade in Mexico and other places in the world – around their global operations, now bailed out by the taxpayer.

Read more: http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/apr/03/us-bank-mexico-drug-gangs