BEIJING — As hundreds of protesters continue to occupy the streets of Hong Kong, challenging China’s Communist Party leaders with calls for greater democracy, much of the world anxiously awaits signs of how Beijing will react to their demands.
But the anticipation is perhaps most keenly felt along the periphery of China’s far-flung territory, both inside the country and beyond, where the Chinese government’s authoritarian ways have been most apparent.
Among Tibetans and Uighurs, beleaguered ethnic minorities in China’s far west, there is hope that the protests will draw international scrutiny to what they say are Beijing’s broken promises for greater autonomy.
The central government’s refusal to even talk with pro-democracy advocates in Hong Kong, exiled activists add, also highlights a longstanding complaint among many ethnic minority groups in China: the party’s reliance on force over dialogue when dealing with politically delicate matters.
via From Tibet to Taiwan, China’s Outer Regions Watch Hong Kong Protests Intently – NYTimes.com.
This post is from a Muslim woman in Cairo who does not like what the current government is doing. The violence is not being adequately reported. Read her post. Here’s the first several paragraphs:
Open any international newspaper today and read a misleading, watered-down version of the truth.
Muslim Brotherhood supporters clash with protestors, Morsi’s backers and rivals battle in streets of Cairo, Egypt descends further into political turmoil – these are all spins on what is really happening here.
The truth is uglier and more unsettling. This is not about two factions battling each other. This is about a well organized and devious militant militia, with members that carry pictures of al Qaida and Bin Laden, who yesterday went to disrupt a peaceful protest with guns, ammunition and gas. I saw them attacking women and men of different backgrounds who stood opposed to them, in the most violent way.
This is not about Egypt being divided. Yes, we are a diverse and populous nation and we will not all agree on everything, socially or politically. But this is about one faction that wants to bring a war against everyone who does not belong to or endorse their version of Islam. I am a Muslim woman and they label me a crusader and an infidel because I do not support their view of Islam.
We stood in peace. We came as we had come on Tuesday 4th December to express our outrage at the draft Constitution that the President and his supporters want to pass and the sweeping powers he has accorded himself, but we came peacefully. Tuesday evening and the huge march towards the presidential palace, which thousands joined, provide ample evidence of that. Crowds of us assembled, stretching as far as the eye could see. We carried lights and flags; we chanted; the atmosphere was full of hope and unity. Like the best times of the Revolution, we felt a sense of possibility for the future of our country and conviction that only by challenging Morsi’s bullying, authoritarian tactics could this possibility become a reality.
She has been arrested 40 or 50 times for acts of civil disobedience and once served six months in prison. In the Nevada desert, she and other peace activists knelt down to block a truck rumbling across the government’s nuclear test site, prompting the authorities to take her into custody.
She gained so much attention that the Energy Department, which maintains the nation’s nuclear arsenal, helped pay for an oral history in which she described her upbringing and the development of her antinuclear views.
Now, Sister Megan Rice, 82, a Roman Catholic nun of the Society of the Holy Child Jesus, and two male accomplices have carried out what nuclear experts call the biggest security breach in the history of the nation’s atomic complex, making their way to the inner sanctum of the site where the United States keeps crucial nuclear bomb parts and fuel.
via Behind Nuclear Breach, a Nun’s Bold Fervor – NYTimes.com.
INWOOD — The NYPD dispatched cops with paintbrushes to cover up a controversial mural on the side of an Inwood business Tuesday, after approaching the owner with concerns about its message, DNAinfo.com New York has learned.
A pair of plainclothes officers arrived at New Edition Cleaners at 4929 Broadway at 11 a.m. Tuesday, armed with buckets of black paint, rollerbrushes and drop cloths, and began painting over local graffiti artist Alan Ket’s five-day-old mural titled “Murderers.” The two identified themselves as police to a reporter.
The mural, which included the word “murderers” painted above several tombstones and coffins with epitaph names that included the NYPD, the Environmental Protection Agency and global corporations including Halliburton and Monsanto, was painted on the wall of the business with the permission of its owners.
SEE MORE PHOTOS
Officers visited the store on Monday, telling owners that the painting needed to come down and calling the message a “bad idea.”
via Cops Paint Over Inwood Mural That Depicts NYPD as ‘Murderers’ – DNAinfo.com New York.
In April, a coalition of unions, environmental groups, community organizing networks — including National People’s Action, PICO, the Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment, Jobs with Justice, National Domestic Workers Alliance, Rainforest Action Network, SEIU, United Food and Commercial Workers, AFL-CIO, Communication Workers of America, MoveOn, Unite Here, Common Cause, the Steelworkers union Public Campaign, Public Citizen, Health Care for America Now, the United States Students Association, and others—began a series of protest actions major banks and corporations, and trained close to 100,000 new recruits in civil disobedience tactics.
In April they showed up (and some got arrested) at Cigna, General Electric and Wells Fargo shareholder meetings. In the next month, they plan to make their voices heard at Verizon, Bank of America, Hyatt, Tesoro, Sallie Mae, Walmart and other corporate annual meetings. They will commemorate May Day with actions at several corporate headquarters and stockholder meetings as part of this ongoing “99% Spring/99% Power” campaign that will continue throughout the summer and into the election season with demands that corporations pay their fair share of taxes, big banks end the epidemic of foreclosures and reduce “underwater” mortgages to their fair market values, and that banks and Congress unleash college students from unprecedented debt from student loans. By keeping the heat on, and gaining visibility, they hope to inject these issues into the upcoming election season.
via Occupy Activists Resurrect May Day for Americans | The Nation.
And that’s not all. Action in California too:
The May Day demonstrations took place across the country and in countries across the globe.
In the Bay Area in California, marches and protests snarled traffic and caused road closures. Hundreds marched through Oakland, temporarily closing streets and bank branches and clashes with officers in riot gear, who deployed tear gas on crowds.
Service to the Golden Gate Ferry service, used by many commuters from Marin County, Calif. to San Francisco, was shut down after workers in bitter contract negotiations over health insurance coverage went on strike and picketed ferry terminals.
via Arrests on Lower East Side as May Day Protests Spread – NYTimes.com.
Max Rivlin-Nadler interviews David Harvey in Salon.
Geographer and social theorist David Harvey, the distinguished professor of anthropology at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, and one of the 20 most cited humanities scholars of all time, has spent his career exploring how cities organize themselves, and when they do, what their achievements are. His new book, “Rebel Cities: From the Right to the City to the Urban Revolution,” dissects the effects of free-market financial policy on urban life, the crippling debt of middle- and low-income Americans and how runaway development has destroyed a common space for all city dwellers.
Beginning with the question, How do we organize a whole city? Harvey looks at how the current credit crisis had its root in urban development, and how this development has made any political organizing in American cities virtually impossible in the past 20 years.
The right ot the city:
So when I talk about the right to make the city more after our heart’s desire, and what we’ve seen in New York City over the last 20-30 years, it’s been the heart’s desire of the rich folk. Back in the ’70s it was the Rockefeller brothers for example, who were the big players. Now we have people like Bloomberg, and essentially, they make the city in a way that is convenient to them and their businesses. But the mass of the population has almost no influence over this process. There are nearly a million people in this city who are trying to get by on $10,000 a year. What influence do they have over the kind of city that is being built? None at all. Continue reading
Empowered by a federal court ruling that allows protesters to legally sleep on public sidewalks, as long as they don’t block building entrances or take up more than half of the available space, #SleepfulProtest is proving to be an effective new tactic helping speed Occupy Wall Street’s re-emergence into the streets and public spaces of the US. (My colleague Allison Kilkenny recently explained and explored this new strategy.)
It’s been so effective, in fact, that this morning at 6:00 am the NYPD, in direct defiance of the 2000 decision Metropolitan Council Inc. v. Safir, which held “public sleeping as a means of symbolic expression” to be constitutionally protected speech, raided the corner across from the New York Stock Exchange where Occupiers have been sleeping. A motion for an emergency injunction against NYPD disruption of the sidewalk protests was filed this morning.
In the meantime, here are five ways you can help support the Re-Occupation of America:
1. Go to Wall Street to join the Occupiers if you can….
2. Spread the word. …
3. Donate to Occupy Wall Street through its website. …
4. Get ready for the May 1 actions. This is expected to be a major day of resistance on many fronts and of many forms. Do something!
5. Help save Chicago’s Woodlawn Mental Health Clinic.
via Five Ways to Support Re-Occupation | The Nation.