Welcome to the special bilingual edition of "The Broken Rifle" for the European Social Forum. This issue provides information on workshops and seminars of interest to antimilitarists and pacifists, and also additional information on especially relevant issues. The European Social Forum is an important meeting place for movement activists from a wide range of social movements from all over Europe - a unique place to share experience, and to discuss our strategies for another world. We hope it will be an enriching experience.
The European Social Forum in Paris in November 2003 stated in its final document: "We march for a Europe that refuses war". At the same time, many European countries - Britain, Poland, Spain, the Netherlands, to mention just a few - were contributing troops to the "coalition of the willing" occupying Iraq, and the heads of the European Union were discussing a new "EU constitution", with a heavy military component, which would mark a major milestone in the militarisation of the European Union (see article below).
On October 29th 2004 the draft for the EU constitution is intended for signing by the heads of state of the EU member states. After that the ratification process is supposed to start in all 25 EU countries.
We oppose the ratification of this constitution treaty
On 29 October, the new constitution for the European Union will be signed during a special ceremony in Rome. It then needs to go through the ratification process in the 25 member states of the European Union.
The new European Constitution is not just a legal document of more than 300 pages - together with the European Security Strategy, which was approved on 12 December 2003, it will be a milestone in the militarisation of the European Union.
This is only a selection of ESF workshops and seminars related to antimilitarist issues. You may find more information in the complete ESF list, especially in the War and Peace section. www.fse-esf.org Please note that times and venues may be subject to change after the publication of this issue.
We know it's easy to get lost and confused in a city as big as London, especially if you're here for the first time. But if you provide yourself with the current bus- and tube-guides, a good map and a compass, you'll surely find your way...
To make it a little more comfortable for you to travel from one seminar to another: here's an overview on all the venues of the workshops and seminars described in this edition.
European Day of Action Oct 29th On October 29th 2004 the draft for the EU constitution is intended for signing by the heads of state of the EU member state In order to prevent this constitution treaty from being passed, we support a Big Public Campaign that aims at informing and warning the public about the contents of this draft constitution. www.dfg-vk.de
With the invaluable help of volunteers coming from different parts of Europe it has been possible to implement WRI's participation at the European Social Forum as agreed by its Council in Macedonia last June.The office used its net to invite people to come and as a result we have had Ima from Germany and Pedro from Spain to stay in London and work with us for almost a month. They have taken on different tasks and have been able to put together our special tabloid issue of the Broken Rifle.
War Resisters' International was founded in 1921 under the name "Paco". It was and is based on the WRI declaration:
"War is a crime against humanity. I am therefore determined not to support any kind of war, and to strive for the removal of all causes of war"
War Resisters' International exists to promote nonviolent action against the causes of war, and to support and connect people around the world who refuse to take part in war or the preparation of war. On this basis, WRI works for a world without war.