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Olympic Torch Ignites Resistance in Kitchener

Blog posts reflect the views of their authors.

from peaceculture.org

On Saturday December 27th, in Kitchener Ontario over 200 people headed the call out for a public mobilization against the 2010 olympic torch and acted in solidarity with those on the west coast of this country who are being negatively impacted because of the upcoming winter games.

"The Olympic games are not about sport, culture, and international co-operation and understanding, as our government, the IOC and VANOC, and the corporate sponsors portrays with their well funded propaganda" said AW@L media representative for the event Dan Kellar, he continued "They are about privatizing indigenous land,transferring public wealth to developers and corporations, destroying ecosystems for unsustainable and irresponsible developments, implementing the integrated police state, and a program of social warfare on those deemed undesirable to the Olympic whitewashing and greenwashing campaigns."

The demonstration consisted of 3 parts, starting with a rally with speakers including David Eby of the British Columbia Civil Liberties Association (BCCLA), Mark Corbiere from KW Anti-Racist Action, and Six Nations youth Melissa Elliot and Jon Henhawk - who fired up the crowd with messages of resistance to colonization and on the ground impacts of the Olympics and the system it represents.

The early evening gathering in Victoria Park was under heavy police surveillance as allies from across Ontario and the northeastern states assembled themselves to start the second portion of the event - the march.

AW@L's Climate Change Containment Unit (CCCU) led the march, carrying a 5m "torch" ahead of the crowd which had 12 large and colourfully messaged banners and placards reading, among other things "No Olympics on Stolen Native Land", "Fascist Colonial Past, Corporate Colonial Present", and "From Tibet to Turtle Island, Resist Colonial Occupation."

As the march snaked through the streets chanting confidently along the way, two banners were dropped across from the Royal Bank of Canada calling for a boycott of this premiere Olympic sponsor. The government of Canada and the RBC were then publicly shamed for their role in the ongoing genocide of indigenous people and their support for the criminal developments of Alberta's tar sands - a project that has fast become the single largest point source for future-destroying pollution on the planet. Canada was furthered shamed for their refusal to sign the UN's declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

Eventually, the march reached city hall where the publicly funded advertisement for the RBC and Coca-Cola was underway. After a declaration of resistance was issued over the loud speakers, the marchers peacefully erected their banners around the crowd - wherever you turned your head, you could see the messages they held. Thousands of sheets of information were welcomingly received by the general public as the Olympic veil was lifted from their eyes, and the true meaning of the Olympics were revealed.

Without provocation, several people from the torch relay celebration attacked the peaceful demonstrators, and at one point the RCMP physically assaulted several banner carriers before the KW regional police intervened and removed the mounties.

After achieving the goal that were set by organizers, the demonstrators regrouped and marched back to the park, being followed by around 50 police.

AW@L's Dan Kellar concluded "This event was a huge success - Canada's ongoing genocide of the Indigenous of Turtle Island is being revealed to the world through this Olympic circus, and the corporate sponsors of the Olympics had their destructive greenwash exposed."


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Dan Kellar (Dan Kellar)
Kitchener
Member since Juillet 2009

About:

friendly neighbourhood anarchist, rad dad, land defence enthusiast, decolonial digger, radio pirate, indy journalist, systems geographer. noline9wr.ca chippewassolidarity.org

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