Letter from the Editors: 13th April 2023

Spring Rebellion, saving lives in the Mediterranean, and Riots in Kreuzberg


Hello everyone,

On Saturday, Extinction Rebellion are organising a demonstration Emergency: Species Extinction starting at 1pm outside the Bayer Health Care offices in Wedding. The demonstration is making 3 demands on the German government: (1) Declare a biodiversity emergency, (2) Act now with a 100% pesticide exit by 2030 and the immediate dismantling of factory farming and industrial fishing, and (3) Create a citizens council on the subject “Stop mass death, Save biodiversity”, similar to other initiatives in Ireland and France.

The demonstration is part of a week of action for a Spring Rebellion. This includes a Camp at Invalidenpark which started on Tuesday, and will carry on until next Tuesday. There is a full programme of events, including workshops and comedy available in English and German. The film LAND IS LIFE: Stories from the Farmers’ Struggle in the Philippines will be shown on Sunday at 8pm.

On Sunday at 2pm, it’s the latest political walking tour organised by the LINKE Berlin Internationals. In preparation for the 1st of May, the subject of this month’s tour is Riots in Kreuzberg. Every year since 1987, Kreuzberg has seen protests on May 1st. “Revolutionary May Day” combines Germany’s knack for organization with Berlin’s predisposition for nihilism. The first one was in 2009 and they have been updating ever since. The tour meets outside Südblock at Kotbusser Tor and will last around 2 hours. Participation is free, but you are encouraged to give a donation to the tour guide.

On Monday at 6pm in Refugio, there is a workshop From Senegal to Europe and Back. This is a sensitization event about displacement and irregularized migration from Senegal and other African countries, deportation and externalization practices. The workshop aims to raise awareness about the conditions that generate the Senegalese illegalised migration and the mechanisms that produce and reproduce it in a never-ending loop. Read our interview with the organisers on theleftberlin.

Monday also sees the start of an exhibition: Every Life Counts. on flight over the Mediterranean. The action is organised by Sea-Eye, and records their work rescuing fleeing people drowning in the Mediterranean. It takes place in restART in the open art project room for new arrivals and people interested in art, Residenzstraße 132. Sea-Eye Berlin is our Campaign of the Week.

This week is full of activities in Berlin, so make sure you find out what else is going on by looking at our Events page. You can see a shorter, but more detailed, list of Events which we are directly involved in here.

Important news on the planned meeting on 29th April  75 Years Nakba: Anti-Palestinian Racism and Repression in Berlin. Please note that this meeting will no longer take place in Oyoun. For more information, including the location of the new venue–check out next week’s Newsletter. The Küfa to raise funds for the meeting will now take place next Saturday, April 23rd, not this upcoming weekend as originally planned.

And the preliminary programme for the LINKE Internationals annual Summer Camp is now online. Summer Camp takes place on 10th – 11th June in the Naturfeundehaus Hermsdorf, on the outskirts of Berlin. Please register to ensure free accommodation.

Finally, on 17th June, one week after Summer Camp the LINKE Internationals will be showing Still the Enemy Within, a film about the British Miners’ Strike. The screening will take place in Karl Liebknecht Haus and will be followed by a Q&A with the film’s executive producer Mike Simons.

In News from Berlin, problems with the introduction of the €9 “social ticket” for public transport, environmental groups promise actions of civil disobedience in Berlin, allegations of antisemitic slogans at a demonstration, and government health reforms are criticised for lacking the necessary resources.

In News from Germany, study shows shortage in bicycle parking spaces, NATO war exercises planned for Germany, and Karstadt workers strike for collective bargaining.

Read all about this week’s News from Berlin and Germany here.

New on theleftberlin this week, John Mullen looks at the response of the French Left to the ongoing strikes and demonstrations, and we interview the organisers of a meeting about refugees and migration from Senegal.

In this week’s Podcast of the Week, Hanna Grześkiewicz talks about Sounding a Revolution. Since the murder of Jina Amini by the Iranian morality police on 16 September 2022, Iran has been in the thralls of a feminist revolution. What does the revolution sound like? What is the role of sound in a revolution? This audio paper gathers the voices of scholar Chowra Mekaremi, Golchehr Hamidi Manesh from the Only Voice Remains collective, and Behrooz Moosavi from Tehran Contemporary Sounds festival, as well as songs, chants, and sounds in public space, in an attempt to sound a revolution. Sound is used as a tool for untangling the complexity of a revolution, and for hearing its vision for the future.

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Keep on fighting

The Left Berlin Editorial Board