Brief Report about Revolutionary May 1st (Germany)

The weekend of the 1st of May 2011 has seen several moments of refusal of the existent igniting into flames of rage.

In the city of Hamburg, a demonstration was called against the gentrification of some former popular districts (such as around the former squatted houses in the Hafenstraße, St. Pauli district), the commercialization of the city and the threatening eviction of the squatted social center „Rote Flora“, existing outside legality since 1989.

On the 30th of April people began to gather in front of the „Rote Flora“: the number rose to 6.000 participants.

A large black bloc opened up the march, a lot of comrades masked up and began throwing fireworks at the cops who were present with several water cannons and the usual high numbers (this time over 2.000).

The demonstration was loud and had a very offensive character, walking in chains and shouting slogans all the time.

Two famous posh Hotels, symbols of gentrification in the area of St. Pauli, have been attacked with stones and paint from the demonstrators.

Meanwhile a car of the German army, which was parked along the route of the demonstration, has been set on fire.
During a further stop a Lidl supermarket has been expropriated since the demonstrators had to face the warm afternoon…
Once arrived at the construction site of a new „Ikea“ store (already a target of several residents protests) the fence has been torn down: at this point, the police began to attack with watercannons in order to stop a possible storming of the site.

The demonstration got called off and people dispersed in the district of Altona: several police vans and cars got smashed, policemen attacked, estate agencies and shopping malls saw their windows broken and posh car have been struck with stones of fire, while barricades have been erected.

During the night some usual cat and mouse game took place in front of the Rote Flora between police and protestors, while others went smashing banks in other parts of the town.

On the 1st of May, 2.500 comrades took the streets again to celebrate the day with a revolutionary, class-struggle demonstration.

In Berlin, a huge 1st of May demonstration walked the streets of Neukölln.

Up to 15.000 people took part in the anticapitalist march, where again a huge black bloc has been built where many comrades were masked up and chanted slogans.

Along the route, several banks and corporate stores have been smashed and a police station got pelted with stones; some police cars have been also damaged.

A group of riotcops has been also victim of an attack with stones, after which some other riot-units attacked the demonstration and tried to split it up, but they have been confronted and repelled by a rain of stones in a first moment.
Afterwards the attacks by the cops became quite unsustainable and they managed to make some brutal arrests.

The march kept going under a tense atmosphere: once arrived at Hermannplatz, a big square, the confrontations began again, stones and bottles have been thrown and the cops responded with batons and pepperspray.

After that, the demonstrators began splitting and walked back towards Kreuzberg.

This year the usual drunken confrontations taking place at night have been quite small – those caused always the highest number of arrests since the participants were mostly drunk or not aware of how to avoid arrests.

The demonstrations in Hamburg and Berlin represent a good step towards the reappropriation of these moments for carrying on acts of confrontative refusal of a commodified world: it means that more and more people are refusing to get scared and piloted by an army of robocops – no matter how powerful and well-organised the latter can appear.

In other parts of Germany demonstrations took place, like in Wuppertal were 400 comrades attended the usual march (which is always not-registered) or in Nürberg, were 2.500 walked the streets.

In Halle, eastern Germany, several thousands demonstrators blocked a neonazi-protest with blockades, some cars of neonazis got smashed and their demonstration attacked with stones.

In Bremen, 4.000 people attempted to do the same, not reaching the expected results though.
However a few neonazi-cars have been burned the days before the march took place.

Moreover, a number of direct actions by autonomous/anarchist groups took place during the week, especially in Berlin and Hamburg: in Berlin, two jobcenters, a bank, the house of German industry have been attacked with stones and color, a car of the German railway (responsible for nuclear transports) got arsoned and a court building and the senate for the city-development have been targeted with incediary devices (this latter actions have been carried out by a communist group).

In Hamburg, two police vans which are used to transport the police-horses have been arsoned, as also three cars of the energy-company Vattenfall (responsible of using nuclear energy) and several posh cars.

All in all a busy week.

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This entry was posted on Wednesday, May 4th, 2011 at 9:26 pm and is filed under Autonomy.