WNL Members Attended Blockupy: Resistance In The Heart Of The European Crisis Regime



Last weekend, WNL members joined activists from across Europe in Frankfurt to participate in Blockupy Festival. Blockupy is an international movement of resistance against the European crisis regime. It is a space where groups from across Europe can work together to tackle the common challenges we all face.

“We act in solidarity with all, who share our goal to resist the authoritarian crisis management and Troika policy, to defend the democratic and social rights of employees and all those who are affected by unemployment or increasing precarious working conditions in Europe.”

The festival was a three day event, consisting of workshops, panel discussions, music and art, but based around the core event – a march on the site of the new ECB.


We participated in the three-part workshop ‘Transnational networking and strategies of resistance’ which focused on how, at the European level, we can mobilise and deepen our networks of solidarity. This was done in the first part by looking back at previous attempts, such as Alter Summit and the European Social Forum, with a critical gaze in order to learn from the challenges encountered.

In the second part, groups from Germany and Italy presented projects they were working on as possible examples of what a European wide network could look like and what it could work together on. There was critical discussion about the pros and cons of these and how they would map across the varying situations in the countries of Europe.
This led nicely into the third part of the working group which dealt with possible projects to bring the groups closer together, with a common strategy and shared goals. Some of things discussed were building towards Blockupy for March 18th, whether or not to continue Blockupy past this event, to have an assembly on the weekend of March 18th about the new precariousness of many people across Europe, and building towards European wide days of action on May Day.


We also took part in a workshop by an Italian activist group behind the November 14thSocial Strike. They detailed the how due to precarious situation of many people, especially in regard to their work, many people did not have the option of a strike to win better conditions. They wanted to experiment with the idea of Social Strike in cities across Italy. The idea was to reclaim areas of the city for the day, halting the normal functioning of the city and exerting political pressure against propsed laws worsening of their working conditions. After weeks and weeks of organising and building with some of the trade unions they held assemblies and demonstrations, handed out leaflets to precarious workers in some of the shopping centres and finished off with big marches and a party.


The highlight of the festival was the march to the new ECB building on Saturday afternoon. It was a perfect focal point of resistance with €1.2billion having being spent on a building (just down the road from their current building!) for one prong of the Troika while they go around Europe imposing devastating austerity on ordinary people. It began with some short speeches from Blockupy activists, including the head of Die Linke, before 3,000 of us walked, ran and danced our way to the site of the new building. We carried boxes in a symbolic act to throw back their rubbish of austerity and domination sent to us by the ECB and the Troika. With the speeches first, music playing throughout the march through the streets, and people climbing the fences of the ECB to throw back the boxes (as well as paint), it was much more empowering and fun than some of the events we’ve experienced at home!

#Act A#Act B


Part of the Blockupy Festival’s aim was to connect the countercultural spaces in Frankfurt, social spaces varying from the University to an old and disused prison which had been won by squatters. So while we were getting to know people from across Europe and build links through our common struggles, we got to see a side of Frankfurt other than the financial one it’s known for!

We have to consider how groups resisting austerity here can engage with Blockupy and send a message to the Troika. We found working with other groups across Europe in resistance is an important way to learn and develop, as well as help each other fight back. Next for Blockupy and activists around Europe is the official opening of the new ECB building, they’ve issued a call to action: March 18th 2015: Transnational actions against the European Central Bank’s opening gala: Let’s Take Over the Party!