Monday, July 9, 2007
"About the Security and Prosperity Partnership" Backgrounder
[Original at: http://www.psp-spp.com/?q=en/aboutthespp]
This August, George Bush, Stephen Harper and Mexican President Felipe Calderon will be just 90 minutes from Montreal, in Montebello, Quebec. They are meeting at the Chateau Montebello, as part of the so-called "Security and Prosperity Partnership" (aka the "Three Amigos" Summit).
They talk about "security" and "prosperity", but their agenda really means insecurity and misery for working and oppressed peoples in the Americas.
In brief, the "Security and Prosperity Partnership" (SPP) combines the destructive neo-liberal policies of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) with the fear and paranoia of post 9-11 "Homeland Security" policies. The SPP is firmly rooted within a colonial and capitalist framework.
The SPP is described by its proponents as a "NAFTA 2.0", and is promoted and supported by corporations and their lobby groups, like the Canadian Council of Chief Executives.
A group of 30 corporate executives from the NAFTA countries comprise the North American Competitiveness Council, which was set up "to fully incorporate the private sector into the SPP process" (to cite the SPP's own words). Moreover, because the SPP announces itself as a "dialogue based on shared values," it is secretive process, subject to no formal public scrutiny or open debate.
There is no mystery to the SPP agenda: murderous wars and occupations abroad; border militarization; increased detentions and deportations; attacks on indigenous peoples, the poor, migrants, and working people; ecological destruction; mega-projects in the service of corporate greed; and unfortunately, much more and worse.
The SPP reinforces the idea of "Fortress North America", whereby the rich and privileged live in gated communities and gentrified cities, protected by police and security, with easy movement for capital between borders; for the rest, there's border fences, detention centers, prisons, surveillance, and increased precarity.
This August, protests are being organized by anti-capitalist social justice activists in Ontario and Quebec, within the framework of the People's Global Action (PGA) Network. With organizing hubs in Ottawa and Montreal, on either end of Montebello on the Highway 148, we are preparing to resist the upcoming SPP meeting.
We are not going to lobby the SPP leaders or governments to be nicer. Justice and dignity is achieved through grassroots mobilizing and struggle, not the charity of rich philanthropists, rock-stars or politicians complicit in a destructive system.
When George Bush, Stephen Harper and Felipe Calderon try to meet at the Chateau Montebello, we are going to protest and try to disrupt their meeting. There will be activities from August 19-21, with a call for a convergence on Montebello (or as close as possible to Montebello) on 3pm on MONDAY, AUGUST 20. An anti-capitalist camp will be set up in the Montebello region in early August, as a convergence space for activists who want to gather early to plan popular and actions.
More info at: www.psp-spp.com
Our protests are rooted in our ongoing mobilizing efforts and day-to-day organizing: for indigenous sovereignty and self-determination in the Americas, for immigrant justice and free movement, against deportations and detentions, against war and imperialism, for workers justice, against poverty, for ecological and environmental justice, for the liberation of all political prisoners, in solidarity with social justice movements worldwide.
On January 1, 1994, the day that NAFTA took effect, the Zapatistas began an uprising in southern Mexico, declaring NAFTA a "death sentence" on indigenous peoples. With the SPP, the politicians, bureaucrats and corporations of North America have renewed their death-sentence on all of us.
The inspiration of the Zapatistas still resonates, 13 years later, as we make links between our struggles and issues, and unify to confront the SPP at Montebello, and beyond.
WEB: http://www.psp-spp.com (visit frequently for updates)
Posted by Réseau Anti-Capitaliste de Montréal at 11:03 PM