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News :: Organizing
S. Korea's struggle for a powerful anti war movement
06 Jul 2004
Since the beheading of Kim Seong-il in Iraq two weeks ago, we are struggling for to create a mass movement against the troop dispatch plans.
MSSC STRUGGLE REPORT (서울 7.03/04)
…actually a perfect idea! But to achieve this goal we need the power of the masses and a plan…
But before yesterday’s rally had nothing from that. Even KCTU was calling for it, beside many other groups, only 4,000 people, according to a report on the internet magazine Jinbonet (in Korean), were following the call (hopefully just because of the bad weather!?).
But just from the beginning: Last week Korea Times reported that KCTU and other organizations and groups are planning for Saturday massive demonstrations and rallies to prevent the dispatch of additional 3,000 South Korea combat troops to Iraq and to bring the troops home already stationed there. In the report the organizer were quoted to get 500,000 demonstrators on the streets.
So on Saturday at 6 pm about 100 KCTU activists gathered near Gwanghwamun, downtown Seoul. At 6:30 pm a DLP (Democratic Labor Party) demonstration with about 2-300 activists arrived and a while later more than 100 hospital workers entered the area. Even it was raining cats and dogs more and more people arrived – but not the estimated 500,000, even less than last Tuesday and Wednesday (we reported here).
But even less people and really ugly weather, the atmosphere was powerful and strong.
On the end, at around 10:30 pm the information was given that the rally will transform into a demonstration. So many people gathered in the front of the stage, many ready to confront with the massive units of riot cops, several thousand of them were in readiness. But, even the protesters were very angry - especially over the stubborn government, many demanded now the resign of president Roh Moo-hyon - the organizers and presenters of the rally were trying to get the crowd calm. At that point many protesters got really angry, some started to scuffle with the cops. But because many others already left, and the rest just were angry, but had no plan, what to do – they had no chance.
After all, this event was not a real victory, not at all!
But it is our duty to learn from it. First of all: only with a powerful mass movement we will have a chance to achieve our demands. A mass movement means workers, students, citizens, netizens, artists and other public figures together in one front, creating daily varied kinds of resistance – like we had the situation in end of 2002 (anti USFK struggle). Another very important point: Our main aim should be to prevent the additional troop dispatch, bring back home the troops already in Iraq. For this we have to use our whole power, creativity and imagination – and this will be hard and difficult enough. Actually the demand of Roh’s resignation is complete right, but at first we have to focus on the troop dispatch issue! Roh’s resignation we can demand later, especially when a real mass movement is taking daily massive action, a majority of the population is supporting our demands and the government will give a shit on it. By the way, it is very interesting to see, that many people only few month ago defended Roh Moo-hyon against the impeachment against him (read this and this) now want him out of the presidential office!
What’s new on the migrant workers struggle front? For yesterday we organized a tournament in Ansan framed by a cultural program – but we didn’t count with Mindulle, the typhoon also wanted to visit there, so the culture program we had to cancel. So eight soccer teams, fr4om Nepal, Pakistan, Bangladesh and South Korea battled in the rain, storm and mud and finally the Pakistani team won. But even the weather was really sh… 150 migrant workers from Nepal, Bangladesh, Pakistan and some Korean supporters in the audience enjoyed the event – just a new opportunity for more unity under the migrant workers community.
Here some impressions from before yesterday's rally (pict. 1: Voice of the People). And here you can see more pictures about the rally, read a Korean text and see a movie.
RELEASE ALL MIGRANT WORKERS FROM DETENTION CENTERS!
FREEDOM FOR ALL POLITICAL PRISONERS IN S. KOREA!
LET’S FIGHT TOGETHER FOR A WORLD
WITHOUT EXPLOITATION AND OPPRESSION!
ANOTHER WORLD IS POSSIBLE, ONLY
IF YOU WANT AND FIGHT FOR IT!
한국의 모든 양심수들의 석방을 위해 투쟁
착취와 억압이 없는 그날을 위해 투쟁
다른 세상은 가능하다, 당신이 그걸 원하고 그것을 위해
우리가 잃을 건 쇠사슬밖에 없다구!
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