PGA - People's Global Action - started in 1997. It has been a tool and a diffuse structure coordinating groups and people sharing common struggles and practices, in accordance with various anticapitalist and anti-authoritarian principles (see the hallmarks below). PGA initiated the Intercontinental caravan in 1999, as well as international action days of actions against the G8, the WTO, the World Bank, the IMF... In Seattle, Genoa, Prague, and in a number of less mediatic events, PGA was a driving force behind numerous actions and reflections. Amidst counter-summits, social forums & various actions, groups close to the PGA are now looking for new drives to challenge stagnation.
A very clear rejection of capitalism, imperialism and feudalism; all trade agreements, institutions and governments that promote destructive globalisation.
We reject all forms and systems of domination and discrimination including, but not limited to, patriarchy, racism and religious fundamentalism of all creeds. We embrace the full dignity of all human beings.
A confrontational attitude, since we do not think that lobbying can have a major impact in such biased and undemocratic organisations, in which transnational capital is the only real policy-maker.
A call to direct action and civil disobedience, support for social movements' struggles, advocating forms of resistance which
maximize respect for life and oppressed peoples' rights, as well as the construction of local alternatives to global capitalism.
An organisational philosophy based on decentralisation and autonomy.
In Europe, groups who identify with the PGA principles meet about once every two years, through the initiative of a "convenor" collective. Since 1997, these conferences have been the opportunity for several days of exchanging practices and knowledge, and of establishing bonds, which allow us to be better organized in common actions.
The last conferences were held in Leiden (Netherlands) in September 2001 and in Belgrade (Serbia) in July 2004. Each time, they drew hundreds of people together and generated contacts, exchanges and strategical reflections. This year, the Francophone group STAMP is the convenor and the next european gathering of PGA will take place from the 19h of August to the 3rd of September 2006.
STAMP started through a bunch of individuals involved with "sans-titre", a network of individuals involved in direct action, autonomy and self-managed spaces around France. They now would like to open up the organizing process to all, around the few following principles.
Decentralization and local grounding:
This gathering will take place in two stages:
1. Decentralised gatherings will be held between smaller groups of people (around a hundred) in various locations. During nine days, in five different places, we'll mix thematic discussions and workshops linking local issues with reflections and initiatives from participating European groups. Each space will also propose a collective practical project and common realisation (construction, action...). Several locations are anticipated, including Lyon, Toulouse, Lavaur, Dijon, Geneva...
2. A centralised part will bring everyone together on one site, for four or five days, to allow everybody to share previous discussions and take decisions about the organization and future projects of PGA in Europe.
Non-specialization and "dishwashing-theory" mix:
During these meetings we want to favour non-specialization and the horizontal sharing of tasks. We would like to put particular attention on the collective organization of everyday life. Projects proposed by each conference space should allow us to exchange practical know-how, linked to the needs of the host locality.
A desire to strenghten links with Eastern Europe:
During the months leading up to the meeting, several travels will take place in these regions, in order to present the meeting and get to know local projects. Solutions will be investigated, in terms of visas and transport, to help people and collectives in precarious situations to travel here.
The organization of this gathering is a political and joyful project for us. It requires a lot of energies and commitment in order to become an open collective adventure, rather than the performance of a few "activism experts".
Regular organizational meetings will bring STAMP to different towns during the upcoming months. International meetings allow us to assess the advancement of this project and open up the organization to other people and groups of PGA Europe. The next one will take place the 21st and 22nd of April in Budapest.
About the contents...
Here are themes to be tackled around within the PGA encounters, some of which are rooted in some of the decentralized locations already. This list aims at opening perspectives, so that each participant can propose contents, workshops, texts... in the months preceding the conference.
development & preservation of autonomous spaces (squats, self-managed spaces, collective projects in cities and in the countryside);
gender issues, struggles against male domination & patriarchy;
industrial society, its relationship with space and the transformation of the social environment; the effect of industrial technology of human relationships;
social control, security and its politics, militarism and repression of protest; digital struggles:
digital struggles: Indymedia & the movement; alternative servers (riseup.net, squat.net), users' responsability & solidarity facing new repressions;
rejection of the State: experiences of self-management & direct democracy; market economy & consumerism versus alternative non market based economies;
struggles of workers and welfare claimants; anti-wage slavery; the fight against capitalism and its institutions (WTO, IMF, WB, EU, etc.); state of European capitalism (free exchange agreements, privatisation, etc.); the
current dead-end regarding anti-racism in our anti-capitalist/anti-establishment sphere. Post-colonialism, struggles around immigration, the abolition of borders;
capitalist management of resources and energy, impending environmental catastrophes, foreseenable alternatives and practical ecology;
the anarchist ghetto: militant politics & elitism; how to escape its insularity?
anti-essentialism and critique of the religious relation to « nature », as a shaper for our perception of age, gender, race; anti-speciesm & animal liberation.
"towards a new type of struggle?"
Confrontational direct action tactics and/or autonomy & practical alternatives building?
Co-existence or divorce with institutions, unions, NGO's and The Left
Our techniques and methods of organisation, actions and debates.
The question of class, gender and racism at the heart of our struggle
Links with other protests within a global "across the board" strategy
We are already looking for various resources, including funds, to help for travel/visas, as well as other logistic costs. Any initiative, from money, to mosquito repellent cream, screwdrivers or tofu...) is welcome. Donations can be made to "Accueil caravane" at:
STAMP c/o Longo Mai 04300 Limans France
A detailed list of locations, events and issues will be available soon.
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