Food Not Bombs Says No To The President’s Expansion of Endless War

The ongoing U.S. Colonialism in the Middle East and North Africa is an endless war fought for generations, which stands to grow ever stronger with last night’s address to the nation by Barack Obama.

Once again, Iraq has become another place for drones to fly under the command of the White House and Pentagon, joining Yemen, Jordan, Somalia, and Afghanistan (to name a few), in an endless, borderless war on terror. The president will incorporate more of Iraq and Syria into the international program of precision bombing; and the flood of American arms and military technology to support the unspecified “Syrian opposition” will escalate. The president is proceeding without an overt declaration of war, instead claiming to be launching a, “counter-terrorism campaign,” operating within a strange place both in and outside of a legal authority to wage war.

The executive authority has now outlined his plan to, “degrade and ultimately destroy,” what is described as pure evil: the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria. Despite the presentation of ISIS as a ‘medieval’ organization opposed to all normal types of western civilization, they are a thoroughly modern social movement. Like every political power since the 18th century, ISIS seeks to seize the State, by waging war for State sovereignty. The tactics of ISIS are tactics of warfare invented and used by the United States and European governments throughout the 20th century, deep in the laboratories of imperialism. The violent dispossession of land to finance further warfare, the calculated use of starvation, torture, public executions; these are things that all modern governments have done to establish their sovereignty over people they claim the right to govern. These tactics are routine practices of State-building. They are examples of governing, whether it is democratic governance, totalitarian, Shia majority, Sunni majority or otherwise.

ISIS has taken power because in certain areas of Iraq and Syria, it claims a monopoly on the right to death; a monopoly on the exception to kill without any form of external oversight or restraint. The United States is now trying to win back their fading monopoly on the right to kill without judgment

“Government,” is another word for the authority to kill with impunity; as both the United States and the Islamic State demonstrate.

Reviewing the long and short 21st century history of Iraq, it is undeniable that the dire choices facing most Iraqis are the consequences of global capitalism. The United States invasion of Iraq was a launching pad for the radical political project of neoliberal policymakers and private military contractors. The people of Iraq have experienced one of the most violent and technologically advanced campaigns of economic dispossession and reorganization in human history. No one can underemphasize the destabilizing impact of the wealthiest nation in the world attempting to forcibly redesign a population based on the doctrine of neoliberalism.
The social engineering of Iraqi society, from secret police forces to the exploitation of inter-sectarian conflict of Sunni and Shia factions, has created the context for a social movement devoted to the politics of death. The lasting social order left behind by the plan to marketize Iraq from above is the everyday reality of the politics of death for those on the bottom.
Capitalism from above coexists with a radically increased risk of biological extermination for those on the bottom.

Thinking and acting outside the politics of death and exploitation means rejecting the false choice between the power of ISIS or the United States and the American backed puppet government. The demand coming from the mouths of every politician and media figure today is that we need to act now, but who is the, “we,” that must attack?

Does it refer to U.S.-allied military dictatorships (such as Egypt and Turkey), with brutal human rights records of their own?

Does it refer to the United States Government and the private corporations that pillaged Iraq and helped engineer a society of death?

Or does it refer to the ages of Western colonialism in the region that has crushed indigenous forms of power for hundreds of years?

President Obama’s vision for an extension to an endless war reveals the basic tactics used everywhere to protect State power over the universal authority to kill, without need for justification. The future of the non-owning classes lies in our ability to create social movements that break with the systems organized through the use of death, war, and accumulation.

Say no to their war and seek to build solidarity with ordinary Iraqis without relying on the politics of death. End the endless war on the Middle East and North Africa.

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Community Garden One Month Anniversary

One month ago today we began the process of transforming the abandoned police station at 23rd & Damen into a community garden. Now dozens of plants are growing & some are already providing food for the community. This couldn’t have happened without your love & solidarity. Thank you for making this dream a reality, through our collective action we can prove that another world is possible.

Why we turned an abandoned police station into a community garden: https://pilsenfoodnotbombs.wordpress.com/why-we-transformed-an-abandon-police-station-into-a-community-garden/

Donate to keep the garden growing: https://pilsenfoodnotbombs.wordpress.com/community-garden-fundraising/

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This is what solidarity looks like: Stone Soup Garden Converts An Abandoned Parking Garage Into A Community Garden!

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ST JOSEPH MO –

A garden blooms in the heart of downtown St Joseph where a partially condemned parking garage sits on Felix between 8th and 9th streets. The top split-level tier has been out of service for over a decade with barricades blocking the ramps. The city has ignored the task force that formed in 2009 to address downtown parking and specifically this eyesore and it’s crumbling edifices are now covered in debris, broken glass and graffiti. It is just one of dozens (if not a hundred) vacant and unused buildings and homes across the city of St Joseph.

In a globalized city with international giants of industry at the heart of advanced capitalism, people are still allowed to die of starvation, malnutrition, basic illness and lack of permanent shelter. In the wealthiest country of the world, the most extreme forms of poverty persist unabated, while buildings that could be urban farms, social centers, living spaces, radical libraries, free schools or free medical and mental health clinics are kept off limits through the unending threat of the prison cell and the barrel of the gun.

Today, May 30th, 2014 the Stone Soup Garden have taken one very small step in our downtown neighborhood to combat the ruthless inequality of capitalist society. Instead of allowing the abandoned parking garage to continue as negated space wasting away, we have decided to make a garden to grow food and build community power through autonomous food security. In the garden, we will grow fresh vegetables that we will hand out for free.

The Stone Soup garden is just one part of our community garden project. This is only the beginning, as we encourage people to reclaim land in their neighborhoods for the benefit of their communities.

Why have a garden on an abandoned parking garage?

The simplest explanation is the most obvious. We’re turning dirt and seeds into food and a stronger community. The building’s current condition and the city’s deep reluctance to either renovate or raze the structure represents the systemic social dispossession necessary for global capitalism. The privatized and restricted status of the land today represents the exclusionary social practices required to make sure market exchange is the only medium for accessing the means of survival, political power, and cultural expression. Communities across the world, whether indigenous Brasilians or residents of St Joseph, are forcibly denied control of their surroundings, creating a global condition of social insecurity.

The city refuses to accept responsibility for this property, so it defaults to the commune of the people to create a new world in the shell of the old.

We invite you to join us. This is your garden. We are there each evening after 6pm at the Northwest corner of the top level at Felix Street between 8th and 9th.

Learn more about their project: http://stonesoupgarden.wordpress.com/

Community Garden Construction

Join us for a day of clean up & construction at the community garden. Our goal is to install one more garden bed, make more flower beds & get the lot cleared of glass & other debris. We encourage people to bring materials to make more beds if they’re interested (please feel free to message us if you have any questions about what you might need).

May 24th – 1:00pm – 23rd & Damen10358282_239568769565362_1621327658_n

Community Garden Meeting

Join us this thursday at the garden (23rd & Damen) at 7pm to discuss next steps for the garden project.  Well also be working out  a watering & general upkeep schedule.

See ya there!

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Why Food Not Bombs Pilsen Has Transformed An Abandon Police Station Into A Community Garden

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The Pilsen neighborhood has been forced to live with an abandoned and decaying police precinct at the corner of 23 rd and Damen for 8 years. The building, which is still owned by the Chicago Police Department, is covered in debris and features steel plates over every door and window-a security feature reminiscent of prison walls and border fences. It is just one of thousands of vacant and unused buildings and homes across the city of Chicago, spaces that are kept private through government coercion in order to maintain their market value. In a globalized city at the heart of advanced capitalism, where bond traders exchange billions of dollars in our financial markets, people are still allowed to die of starvation, malnutrition and lack of permanent shelter. In the wealthiest country of the world, the most extreme forms of poverty persist unabated, while buildings that could be urban farms, social centers, living spaces, radical libraries, free schools or free medical clinics are kept off limits through the unending threat of the prison cell and the barrel of the gun.

Today Food Not Bombs Pilsen has taken a small step in our neighborhood to combat the ruthless inequality of capitalist society. Instead of allowing the abandoned police precinct to remain privatized and wasted, we have decided to make a garden to grow food and build community power through autonomous food security. In the garden, we will grow fresh vegetables that we will hand out for free at our weekly food distribution. The garden is just one part of our community garden project that features several raised beds placed through out the Pilsen and Little Village neighborhoods. All these beds are growing vegetables to feed whoever is hungry.

Why have a garden on an abandoned police station?

Our reasons are simple. The building’s current condition and its previous use as a police precinct represents the systemic social dispossession necessary for global capitalism. The privatized and restricted status of the building today represents the insane exclusionary social practices required to make sure market exchange is the only medium for accessing the means of survival, political power, and cultural expression. The building’s original purpose, as a staging ground for armed agents of racial-economic apartheid, represents the violence that enforces dispossession. Communities all over the world, whether they be indigenous or urban, are forcibly denied control of their surroundings-creating a global condition of social insecurity.

The necessary dispossession for private accumulation has been a fundamental feature of capitalism since its beginnings, when Euro/Anglo settlers robbed indigenous North American communities to establish plantations and eventually industrial production (and the land on which the cop shop sits today is no different, it is still stolen land colonized by anglo-american society). We can look all around us today and see how social dispossession continues to sustain our market system that benefits a select economic class. The foreclosed and vacant homes peppering Chicago’s neighborhoods are just one example of this fact; people must be kept from autonomous use of their environment so that the marketplace is the only social management system through which life can be lived.

The implicit threat and explicit use of force underwrites our society of dispossession, and the State claims a monopoly on both forms of force. The institution of the police deny us common spaces for mutual aid, ensuring that a system based on elites in boardrooms decides our political and economic destinies. What better example do we have of this basic role of the police in capitalist society then the cruel demolition of the La Casita Fieldhouse in the summer of 2013. We have not forgotten how the community fieldhouse courageously defended and managed by parents of children attending Whittier elementary was destroyed by police agents acting at the behest of Democratic politicians and commercial developers. We have selected the police station because of its close proximity to this scene of vulgar state repression. La Casita was a vibrant example of the commons and its brutal end was a horrendous example of who the police truly serve and why.

We are living in an historical era in which the contradictions of capitalism have intensified to an unprecedented degree. Radical technological advancements and unparalleled volumes of economic wealth are produced by a society where people still cannot get enough food to survive from day to day. The coexistence of such power with such abandonment is the society of dispossession; the proletariat is kept from enjoying and controlling the products of their creativity and the commons is suppressed to protect the artificial universalization of capital. While it is a small step, we have created this garden to create another space of the commons, to stand against the society of dispossession and demonstrate through our deeds the real possibilities of decentralized communism and social networks of mutual aid. We encourage all radicals who believe in these possibilities to join us in the struggle for the commons, for viable alternatives to capitalism and state violence.

Ask nothing from our oppressors, make no demands from the masters who want nothing but to keep us under the crushing weight of their boot heels. Take back the land, decolonize our relationship to food, and dispossess the system of dispossession. Come and stand with Food Not Bombs in the creative production of the commons.

Community Garden Project Kick Off

Join Food Not Bombs Pilsen on May 10th to help install community gardens on reclaimed property. We will gather at 12:30pm at the Damen Pink Line stop at 19th & Damen. At 1pm we will go over to the garden lot, clean out the space, & put in several raised beds.

 

More info coming soon!fnb