Received on 22.08.17:
Direct actions in Białowieża Primeval Forest in the east of Poland have taken place since the Polish government took a radical stance about cutting trees in one of the most unique places in Europe. Polish Ministry of Environment has planned to triple the volume of timber sourced from the forest from 63,000 m³ to 250 000 m³ till the end of 2021. As an excuse to destroy a very important ecosystem they have used the bark beetle invasion.
A grassroots initiative of people – Camp for Forest – is aiming to stop the logging by blocking the harvesters, forwarders trucks, shutting down roads, documentation and counter-information actions. Activists from all over the world who participate in the camp agreed on peaceful, non-violation actions but increasingly they have met repression from the police and forest guards.
The main goal of Camp for Forest is to protect the Białowieża Forest and extend the status of national park to the whole area of the forest. The principle structure of the group is non-hierarchical and open-access for activists who are ready to improve the idea. Howewer, in the battle can be seen some facts which are alarming – the group of people from different ecology movements, enviromentalists, scientists, local people and random people has no clear political direction, decisions very often are influenced by a liberal mindset. The struggle is not grounded in an anti-capitalist perspective which means that there is no clearly defined objective of the direct actions undertaken. A more horizontal power structure is necessary in order to makes the group more diverse by tapping into the creative potentials of all the members but self-appointed leaders often limit critical voices. Another issue is non-violation methods presented as the only method available, that is dangerous in the long perspective of fighting that will come to fruition.
Active resistance which has started in Poland received solidarity of people from all over the country. The eco-defenders movement in Poland is relatively young, and so is green anarchism. There is still much we have to learn. We call for support of our struggle against capitalism! Solidarity is our weapon!
najpierwziemia [at] riseup [dot] net
MarSe, SunMoon Crystal