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Genoa: 130,000 protest for justice for Carlo. One year on

IMC-UK in Genoa | 21.07.2002 19:41 | Genoa

The woman fumbled and cursed. She was running out of change. When she opened her café around the corner from Piazza Alimonda....

.....she had no idea what was about to descend around her. Outside, a steady stream of people passed on their way to where Carlo Giuliani was shot dead during the G8 protests, one year ago.

Genoa is full of the movement's supporter's again. This time for Carlo and the victims of the Diaz raid. It is 3.30pm and there are easily 30,000 people here. The trains are still coming from all over italy, disgorging their contents in Genoa.

Italy is confronting the issues and those events of the G8 Summit protests, one year on. You can sense the brutality and the blood of that day in the air. From where I am looking, the band is playing for Carlo and massive banners are being tied everywhere. There is a sea of Che chevara flags and t-shirts fluttering in the warm air.

Children play in the sun around the crowds, not realising what had happened here last year. Everyone else knows. The spot where Carlo fell, and thus where the movement gained a martyr, it is covered in flowers and messages. A few yards from where Carlo fell, memorials, pictures, flags, messages, a picture of Carlo and even more flowers adorn the wall and railings of the central building in piazza Alimonda. Many of the residents lean of their windows to get a better view of an historic day when the movement came back to remember.

By 4.30 pm, Heidi arrives in piazza Alimonda. Other left wing politicians arrive also along with the world media. Heidi is only concerned with being with movement that surrounds her and being with Carlo. By this time, I learn that CGIL, the biggest union in italy has arrived and are forming up outside station Briganole. Piazza America, half way between the station and Alimonda is full with another 50, 000 anti-capitalists and Genovese residents.

I fight my way over to give Heidi a hug and a kiss. We try to exchange a few words but we both know that nothing can sum up the moment that has arrived. I retreat as she is consumed by the crowd who are here to say ciao to Carlo.

It is five in the afternoon, exactly to the moment that Officer Plannica fired his automatic pistol and shot Carlo dead. A hush overcomes Piazza Alimonda and as many people that can, sit down. Heidi's family take their places in front of the world media. I felt deep inside that their grief, which was so private before is on public display with the rest of the world.

Everyone starts clapping and do not stop for at least half an hour. I am some way back in the crowd, watching, when Heidi gets up, looks at me and waves me over. As one of the diaz raid victims, she wants me next to hear.The crowds part to enable me to sit next to Heidi and her family. A moment that will live for me for the rest of my life. We both cry. Some people near Carlo’s shrine stood silently. I think momentarily, I wander what they are thinking about? Others were shouting solidarity! Even more people are clapping.

After what seemed eternity, Heidi kissed me and bid me farewell as she moved to be in front of the demonstration that were forming up at the base of XX Septembre. The police officially quoted the size of the demonstration as 100,000. GSF Stated that their estimates were closer to 130,000. The largest contingent was the CGIL with over 50,000 union members took their place at the front. It took an hour for the back end of the demo to start moving.

I ran up after a short rest to the back of the demo and jumped aboard Terra Di Nessuno's Sound system that was blasting out Heavy Base Reggae. The sights in front of me were a sea of red flags. All of the businesses who had boarded up in case of attack by Black Bloc, relaxed and listened to the music.

Last year, most of Genoa was evacuated as 22,000 cops and 300,000 protesters moved in. It was the first time residents of Genoa had seen the movement up close and many residents came out to cheer and smile.

It took the demo a full two hours to pass the Palace Ducal, scene of where the G8 met last year and down the hill towards the port area where there was a rave that went on into the early hours. Of the 3500 cops that were there, most kept out of sight and not wanting to take chants of assassini! As the demo progressed, graffiti experts did a wonderful job expressing their feelings about a wide variety of issues.

The important conclusion for me is that a movement came back to remember Carlo Giuliani: his life and death. What is crucial to think about is that any one of us could have been Carlo that day,except it was he paid the ultimate price for all of us who were there. That price is the continued faith that the G8 have in Globalisation and it mechanics of control over capitalism, the planet and the power domination of the west over the rest of the world. Carlo will be always remembered for what he died for. It is up to everyone else to form their own thoughts about why.

As a final Sickening note to Carlo's murder, Officer Plannica sold his story for 30,000 euros to one of Berlusconi's TV channels, claiming he was not guilty of murder or manslaughter. In my mind, capitalism has had the final insult to a youth and young man whose anger against the inequalities and power of globalisation was the only thing he could use against capitalism. For Plannica to make profit out of murder is the most evil form of sick capitalism I have ever seen.

Ciao Carlo. We will remember always. Solidarity. Plannica'..Assassini!

Marcus Covell IMC-UK in Genoa.

Some background and links.

Genoa: RAI TV journo on agent provocateurs / Forza Nuova

Diaz Raid Enquiry, Genoa: Background to Molotov Lies

Genoa solidarity message from Genoa Justice Campaign

Genoa: The most bloody and brutal G8 summit ever, One year on.

Guardian on Genoa - The fuse that fizzled

IMC-UK in Genoa
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Display the following 12 comments

  1. photos — IMC-UK in Genoa
  2. demo — IMC-UK
  3. time may change things — zantos
  4. time may change things — zantos
  5. never say nobody — swans
  7. photos — IMC-UK in Genoa
  8. alimonda — IMC-UK in Genoa
  9. carlo remembered — IMC-UK in genoa
  10. genoa photos — IMC-UK in genoa
  11. Genoa Photos — IMC-UK in Genoa
  12. Genoa photos — IMC-UK in genoa