Indian Egg-Pelting as a form of Laughtivism

The power of humor in nonviolent protest! In Odisha, a very unusual form of protest has kept politicians on their toes and security-forces on point! In the Eastern Indian province. egg-pelting (throwing eggs as a form of protest) has been reported over 15 times in the last two years. Targeting political figures from the ruling Biju Janata Dal state political party with the egg attacks gave the security apparatus a firm scare. “The police’s intelligence wing worked overtime to sensitise routes taken by politicians, particularly to interior regions, restricting sale of eggs by roadside stalls. Some policemen were even suspended for failing to prevent the attacks,” according to Priya Ranjan Sahu.  Biju Janata Dal’s MP from Bhubaneswar Prasanna Patasani went to the extent of equating the egg attackers with terrorists and demanded that they be charged with attempt to murder!  Read Priya Ranjan Sahu’s full article on www.scroll.in here. Photograph:...

Popular Protests at the London Arms-Fair DSEI

Back to last week, when thousands of protesters in London took action against the Defence and Security Equipment International, or DSEI. As the arms fair prepared to open its doors at the Excel centre in London’s Docklands, a diverse array of participants led to a wide range of creative and humorous actions. DESI is billed as the world’s largest arms fair, where buyers and sellers of arms to network and make preliminary deals. Although no actual trade takes place, this year’s four-day event will be attended by around 34,000 people from the world’s arms companies, militaries and government representatives,  including military delegations from countries with appalling human rights records and countries at war. Wagingnonviolence.org gives us an insight into several of the nonviolent tactics used to mobilize a diverse group of people and the end-goals of the protests organized against DESI. It also answers the question why the preparations for the arms fair were targeted, instead of the event itself. Read the full article here. Photo: Dancers block a vehicle as part of the “Festival of Resistance to Stop DSEI” on Sept. 9. (CAAT/Paige...

Anti Trump Protests at UN General Assembly – Protest Fatigue?

At what was supposed to be the first big protest against Donald Trump’s appearance in New York for the UN General Assembly, fewer than 1,000 protesters attended. “It’s kind of like battle fatigue. People are worn out.’’ Are people tired of protesting against their president? How can the popular campaign against the Trump presidency stay energized? Read the full article from Barbara Demick for Los Angeles Times here. (PhotoCredits Barbara...

Why the World Loves a Political Outsider: The Guardian | Comment is Free

From Syriza to Podemos, Hong Kong to the UK, people from outside the establishment have been shaking up politics. Serbian revolutionist Sr?a Popovi? argues that the popularity of these political insurgents lies in the impression that they are allowing the people to influence the system, in ways that seem impossible in traditional politics. But how do these outsiders fare once they enter the halls of power? And can they ever truly replace the old guard?...

Weekly report: August 4th, 2017

Photo: Anti-government lawmakers shout ‘fraud’ during a session of Venezuela’s National Assembly in Caracas Wednesday. Photograph: Ariana Cubillos/AP. The Democratic Republic of Congo A series of marches took place across the DRC to demand that President Joseph Kabila leaves office and organizes elections by the end of the year. They were organized by pro-democracy group Lucha, and backed by opposition politicians. The Congolese authorities, which banned opposition demonstrations last September, arrested several protesters. Amnesty International reported that more than 100 people had been arrested, while the UN condemned the ‘arbitrary arrests’. A UN report based on interviews with almost 100 victims says that more than 250 people, including 62 children, have been killed in attacks in the DRC’s Kasai region that are “taking on an increasing and disturbing ethnic dimension”. It also reported that the DRC government might be complicit in the massacres. As measles sweeps across the DRC, more than one million children have been vaccinated against the disease in a nine-month campaign by Médecins Sans Frontières, led in different regions across the country. http://reliefweb.int/report/democratic-republic-congo/democratic-republic-congo-over-one-million-children-vaccinated http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/africa/congo-massacres-ethnic-conflict-250-people-killed-m-united-nations-crimes-humanity-civil-war-a7876266.html http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2017/08/drc-police-arrest-100-anti-kabila-protests-170801082747288.html The Maldives  Fears over the events taking place in the Maldives have only continued to escalate since July 24th, on which day the Maldivian military blockaded parliament and expelled Members of Parliament from the building in order to protect a successful impeachment vote against a close ally of the president. Now, the government is planning to follow through with the execution of three men “in the next few days.” Amnesty International reports that the executions are also a way for the government to divert attention away from its other troubles. In response...