The last 10 days or so have seen a massive shift in the NO TAV struggle, with the state now trying to repress the movement more openly than ever: evictions, police beatings, and the government’s terror propaganda. Here’s a look at recent events:
The NO TAV had called for everyone to join them on a big demonstration in the Valley. Thousands of people – 75.000 or more – united once again in their refusal of the government’s terror tactics against the movement. Parts of the demonstration were heavily charged and activists injured. During the following days many public assemblies took place, and the movement’s official sites announced they were predicting an expansion of the buildings sites to happen very soon, and called for support.
A baita – a mountain refuge – that had been occupied and used by the movement as a lookout post was evicted by hundreds of riot cops. The NO TAV activist Luca – who was on air with Radio Blackout to witness the eviction – was severely injured while he was trying to escape: he scrambled up an electricity pole, suffered an electric shock and fell to the ground. Despite this the eviction carried on, and Luca was finally transported to a nearby hospital only about an hour after the incident. The remaining activists were not allowed to leave till the afternoon.
From 27th February to 1st March – Val Susa in every city!
The days following the eviction saw several mobilisations in solidarity with the movement all over Italy, in France and in the Basque Country, where locals are fighting their NO TAV struggles against similar high speed railway projects. Extraordinary incidents kept taking place, such as cops smashing up cafeterias windows and breaking into them on the hunt for NO TAV activists (despite the fact that the people inside were mostly teenagers hanging out and having their drinks): Police thugs break into bar
A call out was issued for 1st March to be a national “Block Everything Day” in solidarity with the struggle. Traffic blocks of major motorways and symbolic places (like political parties’ offices) took place all over Italy all day, with heavy police charges in some cases. Anonymous Italy, openly supportive of the NO TAV movement, showed their solidarity by shutting down the Italian Police and Carabinieri public sites.
In the meantime the government issued an ultimatum, urging the movement to “stop the violence”.
3st March – NO TAV goes international
Another big day of national and international mobilisations, with solidarity initiatives taking place all over Italy and Europe: London, Paris, Dublin, Budapest, Lyon, Kiev, San Sebastian, Barcelona…and more.
Anonymous Italy responded once again to the NO TAV appeal for a total block by targeting Turin City Council and Piedmont Region’s public sites.
4cm of TAV line = 1 year of pension
3m of TAV line = 4 classes in a nursery school
500m of TAV line = 1 hospital with 1.200 beds, 226 wards, 38 operating rooms
1km of TAV line = 1 year of university fees for 250,000 students, or 55 new local trains
ALL OF THE TAV LINE = unemployment benefits for everyone!
Far from being a NIMBY (“Not in my backyard”) movement – as I’ve seen remarked on occasions – the NO TAV struggle, as with the Occupy Movement or the Spanish indignados, has transcended from being a local community’s environmental battle to becoming a diverse but united movement of different groups of people fighting not only against the destruction of the local environment that the TAV line would bring, but also the devastating social and economic effects it would have (and already has had in part) on the communities affected by it, and the huge profit that the big companies involved would make out of it. The NO TAV – dare I say – is an anticapitalist movement.