Mass protests greet Bush across Europe
Published Jun 15, 2007 7:55 PM
Wherever President George Bush went in Europe this June, whether he was meeting
with G8 leaders, Pope Benedict, presidents or opposition leaders of NATO
allies, or rightist officials in the former socialist countries, he provided an
excellent reason for the people to come out in the streets, often in massive
Rostock, Germany, June 9.
The largest protests, and rightly so, were at the G8 summit in Heiligendamm
June 2-7, near Rostock on the north coast of eastern Germany. Leaving Vladimir
Putin’s Russia aside for the moment—Russia is an undesired but
necessary invitee—the G8 are really the G7—the seven countries with
the strongest economies. They call themselves the seven most industrialized
countries, but they are really the seven most powerful imperialist countries,
with the U.S.—which spends nearly half the world’s outlay on its
military—by far the most powerful.
Rostock, Germany, June 2.
Photo: Gabriele Senft
When the G7 meets, it is to decide the best methods for intensifying the
pillage of the rest of the world, especially of what has been called the Third
World or the South, and the exploitation of the world’s workers,
including those living within their own boundaries. Through the G7’s
decisions, millions die daily of disease and starvation throughout Africa, Asia
and Latin America, and jobs and services are lost in the imperialist
metropolises, and bombs have fallen on capitals of the Middle East and the
Balkans. Thus instead of considering this a meeting of world leaders, it
provides a more accurate picture to think of it as a gathering of organized
crime captains, each one with private interests, but joined in their common
goal of robbing humanity, and Bush as the head of all these captains.
Some 80,000 people from all over Europe gathered near Rostock, some staying for
days as with earlier anti-globalization demonstrations, to protest G8 and
Bush’s visit. The German state mobilized 16,000 cops of various forces to
keep these protesters from disrupting the meeting of the criminals. Cops opened
the attacks on the protesters with clubs and gas and injured and arrested
Rome, Italy, June 9.
Photo: Domenico Ciardulli
While there is some debate in the European movement over the tactics of the
more militant of the demonstrators, few from outside the continent could be
concerned that unarmed demonstrators threw stones at cops who were protecting
the most pernicious gathering of thieves and murderers on the globe.
The next largest protest was in Rome, where at least 40,000 people gathered on
June 9 to protest Bush’s visit. The protesters targeted Bush, but also
the Italian government led by Romano Prodi. This “center-left”
regime has pulled Italian troops from Iraq, but has sent others to Afghanistan
and Lebanon in an attempt to remain welcome in the imperialist club. Despite
Prodi’s submission, Bush paid him the insult of holding an unprecedented
private meeting with opposition leader Silvio Berlusconi, the rightist former
premier and media magnate.
Prague, Czech Republic, June 7.
Bush also visited the right-wing government in the Czech Republic and the
far-right regime in Poland to reinforce their decision to accept the U.S. bases
using missile shields. In both countries, which Bush calls
“democracies,” the population hates having the missile shields, as
these weapon systems threaten Russia and could become targets for
Thus in Prague, at least 2,000 protested Bush’s visit organized by the
“No to Bases” organization, and another few hundred protested
outside the U.S. Embassy, organized by the Communist Youth Movement (KSM), that
the “democratic” Czech government has outlawed.
“We are here to protest against the building of a U.S. radar base in the
Czech republic, against the policies of the American government on this issue,
against the position of the Czech cabinet on the base,” one of the
organizers, KSM chairman Milan Krajca, told Xinhua on June 7.
In Poland, where the far-right regime depends completely on U.S. support,
hundreds gathered in Jurata, near Gdansk, where Bush was meeting with Lech
Kaczynski to discuss how to set up the missile bases despite the adamant
opposition of the Polish population.
Only in Albania, where a far-right regime even weaker and more beholden to U.S.
imperialism than those in Poland and the Czech Republic rules, were there no
public protests of Bush.
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