antiexpo2000 on Wed, 25 Aug 1999 03:58:27 +0200 (CEST)

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<nettime> AntiExpo2000

No to the EXPO 2000 - the world looks different!

Hello to all of you participants in intemational movements opposing the
present world economic system. We are some people ftom germany who take
part in discussions and activities against the World Exhibition EXPO 2000
which shall take place in Hannover(germany) from June 2000. In the
following we want to tell why we think that the EXPO 2000 is an important
occasion for us to attack the image of the world which shall be shown
there and why we would like to get into closer contact on that issue with
groups from different parts of the world. 

EXPO 2000-the big global solutions?

The EXPO 2000 is an occasion for 190 goverments, international
organisations and corporations to present us their perfect conception of
how the future should be. The whole event is, of course, dominated by the
partieipants from the rich parts of the world. The participants of the
EXPO 2000 present themselves as those who are aware of the global problems
of humanity and who have the solutions. Poverty should be banned by
stopping the growth of population, especially in the countries of the
so-called "Third World". Economic stagnation by liberalisation and free
trade. Shortage of food by genetie engeneering. Polution by nuclear

Those who practise worldwide oppression, exploitation, social exclusion
and politics of war celebrate themselves as the beneficators of human
kind. Always pretending that global problems would be caused by poor
people who make too many children, by "Third-World"-countries which are
not able to be successful and by a lack of acceptance for new
technologies. The concepts that should be shown during the EXPO 2000 mean
nothing else than modernising the system of imperialism, patriarchy, and
racism. In many cases, like for example free trade or genetic engeneering,
that does not even mean little improval for the majority of people but
makes the situation worse than it was before. We consider the EXPO 2000 as
a gigantous advertising event where states and corporations show us how
the future should look like- of course without showing the real
consequences of their politics, their business and their technology. We
want to attack this conception of future. On the one hand by direct
action, on the other hand by making clear what the"beautiful" capitalist
world order means for the majority of people, especially in the so-called
"Third World", - now and in future. Further we can try to use the EXPO
2000 as an occasion to express our ideas how the world could look like
instead, if we fight for a radical political and social change. The more
as so many people seem to have accepted that the capitalist future is the
only future which is possible. 

EXPO 2000-all together for our future? 

The organizers of the EXPO 2000 invited also Non-Governmental
Organisations, in order to give the impression that critical voices are
integrated. Of course, only as long as they are critical in a
"constructive" way and accept the basic rules of those who have economic
power. Some local social and ecological projects shall also help to create
acceptance. The EXPO 2000 pretends to have something for everybody. 
Ecologists and corporations, all together for our future? All together in
a post-modern civil society? We give a damn about this. We want to take a
clear position against any kind of integration which means nothing else
than stabilising exploitation and oppression. 

International activities around anti-Expo-resistance? 

The EXPO 2000 is an international project, the ideology which shall be
presented there has a world wide impact. There are projects in many
countries which have an official status as EXPO-projects. 

But in the same time it could be an occasion for intemational
counter--activities. This can mean, that people from other countries come
to Hannover to disturb the EXPO 2000. In 1992, for example, people from
Europe and from Latin America participated in the actions against the EXPO
in Sevilla(Spain) in order to protest against the 500 year-old tradition
of colonisation and aggression. 

But the EXPO in Hannover could also be taken as an occasion for actions
against the World Economic System which happen at different places.During
the WTO-conference in Geneva in 1998, hundred-thousands of people were in
the streets against WTO in Hyderabad(india), Brasilia, Geneva and
different places all over the world. The 18th of June 99, the day before
the World Economic Summit in Cologne(germany), was proclaimed as an
intemational day of action against the centres of economic power. Many
people will remember the "Carnival against Capitalism" which happened in
London on 18th of June. 

Considering those brilliant examples of international resistance
networking, we got the idea that it might be a good thing to take the EXPO
as an occasion for an international action day against world economic
system. As one possibility to show that the future of those who organise
oppression, exploitation, social exclusion and politics of war is not our
future. And, in any case, organising activities on an international level
can help to improve contacts, network structures and political

We really would like to have an answer from you about: 

-If you consider the EXPO 2000 as an interesting occasion for
international resistance networking. 

-What do you think about the idea to take an international day of action
which is linked to the EXPO? Do you have any other ideas for actions? 

-Which political topics do you consider as important for anti-EXPO 2000
mobilisation (also if you don't want do participate in any actions)? 

-How are governments, corporations, institutions and organisations from
your countries going to present themselves during the EXPO 2000? 

-Do you have information about projects in your countries which have an
official status of EXPO-projects? 

-Do you want to have further information about the EXPO 2000, about
counter-activities and about discussions on that issue that have taken
place up to now? There are quite a lot texts in german language, we will
try to translate them at least into english and spanish language. 

-Can you distribute information about Anti-EXPO 2000-activities to other
groups in your countries? Please provide us,if you can, further adresses
of groups which might be interested in actions and discussions around
anti-EXPO activities. 

For the people who participate in the Peoples' Global Action conference in
Bangalore: We think that our arguments and activities against the EXPO
2000 have a lot to do with the basic principles of PGA. What do you think
about this? Do you think it would make sense to do any kind of
mobilisation and discussion against the EXPO 2000 in the PGA-network? 
Maybe those questions could be discussed in Bangalore. 

The following text is some kind of basic text from from the discussions in
germany about activities against EXPO 2000. It was written with the
background of the situation in germany, so some aspects may not be known
to many people from other countries. We will try to explain. Further, we
will send you soon another, more detailed, basic-text about anti-EXPO 2000


The cologne summits and the Expo 2000: two events, the same system

For a continuity of actions

The EU summit and the World Economic summit are over. Everyone is on their
way home. The structures for discussions and actions that have been built
up through hard work are about to fall apart. Until the next campaign, the
next mobilization... In the meantime the structures we have only just been
fighting against continue to work. How come we do not? 

The World Exhibition is calling

Starting in June 2000 the World Exhibition EXPO 2000 will take place in
Hannover. It is planned as a German object of prestige. Ist makers intend
to present no less than "solutions" to such global problems of humanity as
poverty, hunger and environmental destruction. Unlike in Cologne, where
the summits were organized "behind closed doors", the EXPO is staged as an
event open to the world, intent on dialog and oriented towards visitors. 
How could we refuse this invitation? 

Cologne extends into the EXPO

In Hannover, the policies worked out in Cologne and elsewhere shall be fed
in mouth-ready chunks to an amazed audience. During five months, 170
governments, international organizations and corporations want to present
their view of things. A multi-media overkill is awaiting 40 million
expected visitors from all over the world -- the New World Order shows
itself in Disney outfit. World Exhibitions are inherently machineries for
building acceptance which are meant to display blueprints for a future,
propagate belief in progress and identification with the established
conception of culture. Under the slogan "Man Nature Technology" the EXPO
2000 is to deliver this one message: There is no alternative to
capitalism, and the problems of the world can be solved solely through
"globalization", "liberalization" and "world-wide free trade". 

The EU and World Economic Summits and the EXPO are but variants of one and
the same system

The processes that are usually ruthlessly pursued in the sense of
maximizing profit and in a belief in the just victory of capitalism, at
the World Exhibition just presents itself in a different disguise. 
Cleansed, but by no means repenting, we are faced by the ever same actors: 
governments, multinational corporations and international organizations. 
Under the slogan "We understand" they are trying once again to sell us
their old filth. They admit to old mistakes, while persistently remaining
well positioned to meticulously and scrupulously secure their sizable
chunk of the future. A brief look behind the stage exposes their
self-portrayal as what it is -- the modernist babbling of the rhetoric of
sustainability. Structural changes are not part of the plan. Only the
existing relations of power are being modernized here. The so-called new
solutions are just the old ones: genetic and bio-engineering, information
technologies, nuclear technologies, etc. In parallel to this, a consistent
evergreen -- population control. Exploitation, patriarchy, racism are to
remain foreign terms in the dominant theory of knowledge on the global
structural relations, even in the next millenium. What is responsible for
every problem, this does not come as a surprise, is the "population
explosion", the irrationality of the others. We know the song, we know the
protagonists, we know their solutions, and we know our own answer to this
-- resistance. 

The world on a plate -- let us grasp the occasion

The EXPO's function is to advertize these new old blueprints for the
future and to burn them into millions of brains -- no more, and no less. 
Large corporations and governments present a complete blueprint for the
future, putting into relation the various aspects of the dominant politics
(and the politics that is to be dominant in the future) -- a blueprint
encompassing all sectors of society. A noble aim, but for us it also makes
the EXPO a stage that we can attack. We can break up ist pieces and to
this effect use our concentrated experience. Many among us have within the
most varied contexts been working continuously on a variety of topics for
a long time. By uniting our forces we can act successfully. Not only in
Cologne or Hannover, but also beyond. 

Cologne today, Hannover tomorrow -- and then? 

Yet another group that wants to pull us into their thing? Yes and no. Yes,
of course we mobilize for the EXPO, but only because we believe that it is
an obvious point where the topics and criticisms of the spectrum against
the structures of triple oppression can crystallize. The EXPO is an
occasion and not the reason of our work.. And therefore, no, because the
main aim of our politics is not to mobilize for the EXPO. We are looking
for approaches going beyond this and allowing a continuous collaboration
with others. We would like to measure the success of actions not so much
by their quantity and size, as by their contribution to developing our
practical and theoretical positions (for reasons outlined above). In a
process we would like to develop common structures of resistance that do
not function hierarchically but go beyond mere networking and coordination
of actions. What we have in mind are ways of collaborating like the ones
that have developed in some projects in recent years, such as in the
course of the campaign "No one is illegal"*or the "Inner! City! 

*Campaign &#8220;No one is illegal&#8221;: A campaign by anti-racist
groups in germany and austria, which has built up networks against the
rightlessnes and illegalisation of refugees and migrants. 

*1Inner!City!Action: A campaign against the politics of kicking out more
and more poor people, who are not able to consume, from the innercities,
against privatisation of the cities and against growing repression by
police and private security-services. 

Our contact address: 

Anti-EXPO 2000(international contact), c/o Infoladen München, Breisacher
str. 2, 81667 München, Germany Fax: 0049/89/4802006 tel: 0049/89/4489638

Greetings from Munich International AntiExpoContact

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