Archive | March, 2014

Picket for the Craigavon 2 at Kitcheners farmers market a success

29 Mar

Today a small but dedicated group of people went to the KItchener farmers market to have an info picket to raise awareness of the illegal and criminal incarceration of the Craigavon 2 by the British state due to the fact that they are Irish Republicans. The leaflets went very quick as vendors who were supportive assisted by handing them out to there customers.

The reception was generally positive but more so on the inside where more people engaged and asked questions. Several people held placards and there was also a banner.

After this the placards were taped up in highly visible areas in Kitchener and union station in Toronto, due to the fact that one of the supporters took the bus there and the banner was hung outside a station on the university line.

Although the event was positive people wanted a way to plug in and their is talk of having an event on APRIL 28 which is the one year anniversary of the end of there appeal, of which there still is no decision

Kitchener plagued with fascism…..and resistance!!!!!

28 Mar

So a recent article by immigroup stated that Kitchener is the second worst city in KKKanada to move in due to the fact
that it is the hate crime capital in KKKanada and despite the drop in hatecrimes they are twice that of the national average.
To us who live and organize in Kitchener that is not a surprise we have Blood and Honour, Orange order type loyalists,
anti native organizers, EDL and CDL fucks and the list goes on and on.

As a kid growing up in Kitchener one of the first groups I joined was ARA, not because of any desire to change the world,
I was an armchair marxist at the time, but due to a violent assault that occurred to me by Nazi’s in front of my school and
the teachers and so called authority figures doing nothing as i was beat senseless. I joined because that beating taught me that
sitting on the sidelines and ignoring these fucks wont make them go away and if the state will do nothing against fascist violence
then its up to us to defend ourself.

I think I was 14 when this happened and since then I have been an active organizer and have learned quite a bit over the years.
From my experience fascism and racist violence is not something that grows out of a vacuum but rather is nurtured and harnessed
by the state.

When I say this I am not just referring to the collusion between fascists and security forces which has been well demonstrated,
from the use of these organizations to attacks and firebomb Marxist Leninist Bookshops in the 70’s and 80’s in Kitchener,
to the Grant Bristol Affair where CSIS through the use of an agent took a bunch of drunken anti social elements armed and
trained them and unleashed them on the public, To the Matt Lauder Affair, to the use of bonehead fucks to target organizers
such as myself turning a blind eye to the windows of our drop in centre being smashed, death threats, beatings,
targeting family members etc.

What I am referring to the is the racism of the state creating the conditions and ideology that gives birth to this.
When the state publishes the white papers or says there is an immigrant problem, or promotes ideologues
like Christy Blatchford and the like who glorify scum like Gary Mchale and deny basic rights of self-determination
to the land of the Peoples we are on they are creating the conditions. When the murderer of a black youth gets $2000 bail
and is out the next day, only to beat the charges later they are creating the conditions. When they say the economic crisis
that we are facing is not because of the greed of the capitalists who have closed Ar. Kaufman, Arrow and other factory’s to exploit
third world workers but rather immigrants that are fed crumbs from the crumbs of the exploited they are creating the conditions.

When Mona Zettlers house was firebombed with no consequence and fascists are allowed to run neighbourhoods, selling drugs to finance there
activities with the police doing nothing they are creating the conditions. The racism on the street is part and parcel of the racism of the state
which is a colonialist genocidal state, built on stolen land and financed by the theft and plunder of resources from nations on this territory
and abroad and the violence on the street is no different then the violence of the state in Haiti, Venezuela, Ukraine and around the world,
and as long as the state teaches us that colonialism and imperialism is acceptable and marginalize people on the basis of nationhood
treating people as second class citizens, continuing the genocide here of the original peoples, there jackals and lackeys will be able to
carry out racist violence with impunity.

Ironically the state not only turns a blind eye to this, which is in there interest, but targets those who expose and oppose this behaviour.
When the anti terrorist unit was created the police stated in the record (the newspaper for Kitchener and surrounding areas) that
it was there to fight neo nazi’s and there left wing counterpart (us), pushing the idea that we are two sides of the same coin,
so on the one hand you have the right wing extremist on the other hand you have the left wing extremist and they the state are the golden medium.

This analysis not only criminalizes the resistance buts forward the idea that the racism of the state is acceptable
and laws such as the security certificate, the continued theft of children and land of the original people, exploitation of migrant workers
etc. is acceptable and our role is to sit back and let the state sort things out while racist attacks continue from above and below.

From our experience it was not the state that shut down heritage front, nor was it the state that shut down the Canadian Ethnic Cleansing team and a slew of other fascist groups,
rather it was us by mobilising the community and meeting force with force in the process of defending our right to exist and our right to resist.

It was not the state that drove Kyle McGee out of town, rather it was the state that defended him as they layed charges against anti fa s whose only crime
was opposing his bullshit, rather it was the community mobilized, and today it is not the state fighting the alphabet soup of fascists formations but rather us.

Yes Kitchener has a history of fascism, but it also has a history of resistance in the streets, and like we have beat back these forces in the past
we will do it again and win!!!!

Picket For The Craigavon Two #JFTC2

26 Mar

Saturday March 29th 10:30am Kitchener Farmers Market 300 King St. East Kitchener

The Craigavon Two have been interned without trial based on false evidence, witness tampering and MI5 dirty tricks. At there Appeal alot of these dirty tricks were exposed yet still they languish in Maghaberry jail awaiting a verdict, there only crime being that they are Irish Republicans. Take a stand against  a miscarriage of justice and secret evidence. FREE THEM NOW!!!

Greg Thornton and The Waterloo Regional Police

26 Mar

Below is Greg’s story of what he is currently going through as a result of police assault and intimidation.

I have an active small claims case, specifically naming Constable Ryan Thomas, in regards his assaultive and deceptive actions against me. The incident occurred the morning of 04/05/12, in the lobby of Family and Children’s Services. I had police attend my residence every day that week, for various concerns of my mental health. During processing and incarceration for having committed a non-violent offence, there was a complete disregard for my physical and mental health. I submitted a complaint to the OIPRD, which came back unsubstantiated. I failed to appeal the decision through the civilian review board, because I did not receive the paperwork to file an appeal before the 30 day statute of limitations. With there being an admission of the Constables misconduct, but a claim that there wasn’t enough evidence to substantiate it, the investigative report appeared biased. I recently submitted a complaint against the Sergeant who reviewed my original complaint, because I am in the process of obtaining said evidence. The complaint was unfortunately submitted more than 6 months from the date of the incident, and will not be investigated. I was unsuccessful in obtaining a copy of the video surveillance through Freedom of Information, and Family and Children’s Services wouldn’t release a copy without a court order. The Constable’s defence lawyer is now requesting a copy to be used in the proceedings. ************************************************************************************* In the past, I had an issue with a slanderous Family and Children’s Services worker. Thankfully, they removed her from her position, and most of her notes were stricken from my records. When it was found out that my wife allowed me to come for visits without the society’s approval, a no contact order was imposed. I ended up signing full custody of my son over to my wife, completed P.A.R.S., Caring Dads, and attended St. Mary’s addiction counselling. (I now have my MMAR.) I went from no contact, to supervised access, to community access visits, before being allowed unsupervised visitation. That was after a call my wife’s friend made to the police, because she overheard part of an argument while on the phone. (Though my wife asked her not to.) Officers came, took statements, had nothing to suggest or enforce, and wished me luck as they were leaving. They didn’t even mention a report was being sent to F&CS, because the argument occurred in front of our son. That file was eventually closed, and my wife and I attempted to reconcile years later. We were back together 5 months, before financial strain began causing issues. The F&CS’ protection application which sparked this incident, stemmed from my son’s daycare calling in a concern. The worker overheard me arguing with my wife on our way out of the parking lot, after I dropped my son off. My wife received a call at work, and was told if she didn’t leave me, F&CS would apprehend our child. She asked instead for them to help me, and the worker insisted help would be provided once she left. I mentioned to the worker that I had been recently diagnosed as bi-polar, and taking my family was not helping. I had just gone from commission sales to general labour, which was easier to cope with mentally, but was not as financially rewarding. As a result of being more active, I was experiencing many aches and strains. An MRI was scheduled for my lower lumbar, and I was given a requisition to have an x-ray taken of my knees. The pain I was experiencing didn’t preventing me from working, the stress from F&CS’ involvement did. I went down to F&CS every morning, after my wife sent me a text message informing me that she was leaving. The worker told me to address questions regarding access of my son to my wife, and my wife told me to talk to the worker. I tried calling the police in regard to the worker’s threats to kidnap my son, but officers were sent to my home instead, regarding a concern for my mental health. I refused the offer to be taken to the hospital, for being a devastated father who was not being granted access to his child. On Thursday, one worker told me that I was there without a scheduled appointment, and after agreeing to return the following morning, I took a framed mission statement off the wall, because I did not feel the workers were representing the values which it listed. I expected legal recourse that evening, so I put the mission statement in my front bay window. To my surprise, no police arrived. The following morning, I brought the mission statement with me for my “scheduled appointment”. Keep in mind, that at the end of all of this, the protection application was withdrawn by F&CS. I don’t believe an expert testimony is required to explain the 5 stages of grief; Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression and Acceptance. Also, bi-polar is a severe mood disorder. I got out of my van, and headed toward the main entrance. Constable Dietrich approached me in the parking lot, yelling charges (that I was in possession of stolen property), and told me to put the mission statement down. I asked “what’s the matter with you”, as I was attempting to return said property. She never used the words “you’re under arrest,” but told me to drop the mission statement, and grabbed my arm. I pulled away, and continued walking toward the front lobby. Once inside, I rehung the mission statement, told the receptionist I was there for my scheduled appointment, and sat in a chair. I was confused as to why I was still being accused of stealing something I had just returned. The Constable responded by saying that I had assaulted her in the parking lot. I told her I was sorry she scratched herself on her utility belt when I pulled my arm away, but insisted I had to attend my scheduled appointment. The Constable wouldn’t consider joining me in the meeting, and said that I was to deal with her instead. She stood glaring at me, so I threw my fire arms license by her feet, asking why peace officers needed to carry a weapon. I was frantically trying to explain my past with Family and Children’s Services, obviously under extreme duress, when Constable Thomas walked in. The first thing I heard out of his mouth was “get the fuck on the ground now.” I immediately changed my tone, and told the officers I had a requisition to have my knees x-rayed. (Substantiated by civilian witness #3, on page 6 of the investigative report, though unacknowledged in the summary) I tossed my wallet aside to try to get one of them out of my face. Both Constables continued to advance, so I reached my arms forward and said that if they “…needed to put cuffs on me, to go ahead.” Both officers suddenly grabbed my arms, and forcefully pulled me from the chair. I planted my foot to catch my balance, and “it appears as a lunge” according to Sargent Julie Sudds. In both officers’ field notes, it states that I “refused to comply, and clenched his arms to the arm rest of the chair, refusing to let go”. Constable Dietrich states (in the summary of statements, investigative report, on page 12) “they physically grabbed onto his arms to remove him from the chair…. She stated that she and Constable Thomas attempted to ground Mr. Thornton for their safety.” On page 13, in Constable Thomas’ summary, he stated “Mr. Thornton never offered his wrists, nor did he mention any type of illness prior to being placed in handcuffs.” After I offered my wrists, and was pulled from the chair, the officers immediately began trying to trip me. I resisted being “grounded” to avoid being thrown into furniture. On page 11 of the investigative report, in the summary of Staff Sergeant Joanne VanDeursen, she points out that “chairs and a post are immediately in front of them, and would have been an obstacle in grounding him.” The officers just kept hitting me, and I repeatedly asked for them to put handcuffs on me. At one point I told the male officer that he should “pick up his personal effects before they got damaged”. Shortly after, the Constable slipped and fell on his own sunglasses. He immediately jumped up and punched me in the eye, supposedly out of concern for the female officer. (Since he lost grip of my arm.) I made no attempt to escape or retaliate at any point. The struggle ensued for quite some time, and more officers arrived in response to the officers hitting the panic button on their belts. Three more officers piled on top of me, and folded me to the ground as I stood in a base position, forcing me to defecate. One was bending my arm back, but immediately stopped when I made a concise request for them to cease. On route to the station, I was singing loudly to the country music the officer was playing to drown me out. (About having my family taken and being beaten by the police.) My clothes were put in personal property bags, which I later found were destroyed. My requests to be taken to the hospital were ignored. One guard suggested I hold off till after I was released so I didn’t have to come back. The judge I went before, said in open court that he didn’t want to wait around for myself and one other accused to contact sureties. We were not given adequate time or ability to contact a surety, and because it happened to be a Friday, we were to be sent to Milton penitentiary for the weekend. Once I found out, I peeled paint off the bottom of my cell, and began cutting my wrist. The guards told me to drop the paint, cuffed me, and put me in the patty wagon. I asked to see a doctor, and was told I’d see one in prison. I was sent to sit in solitary, on suicide watch, covered in my own feces, in a concrete cell. Because the prison was on lockdown, I was not allowed access to a shower. I was not given a lactose free diet as requested, and was not allowed my prescription medication. Apparently mattresses aren’t allowed in solitary, so my arthritis was becoming quite enflamed. Not to mention the injuries resulting from the assault. The attending nurse told me to lose my sense of entitlement, and offered no support. I was released when my mother posed as my surety on Monday. Although I had been transferred to mental health court, Duty Council suggested the crown would not willingly admit that police had assaulted a mentally ill person. Duty Council advised me to accept the plea bargain, which was offered by the crown after viewing the surveillance video. I completed a year of probation and was given a conditional discharge. Some of my claims of injury and illness did exist prior to this incident, (though unacknowledged by arresting officers) but no medical attention was given whatsoever. The police procedure for dealing with persons with mental health in Ontario outlines symptoms I exhibited, describing excited delirium. (Which should be treated as a medical emergency.) An MRI I had taken in June, showed 4 bulging disks in my lower lumbar. I have an image of my eye, showing bruising, though no signs of injury were noted. Also, I’ve had a limited range of motion since this incident, as demonstrated by the exercises I was given in physiotherapy, at Grey Bruce Health Services. I do not feel the officers adequately de-escalated the situation, especially considering the location, and the aforementioned mental health concerns. After the altercation, I was unable to obtain employment as a result of my injuries, and was unable to maintain minimum payments in financial obligations. I had no other option but to apply for OW/ODSP, and file for bankruptcy. I was fortunate to have my doctor refer me to a retraining program, through Bridging Employment Supports, at the Canadian Mental Health Association. I’m now in receipt of second career funding, and am attending college. I intend to pursue these complaints through the superior court of justice, not only for financial compensation, but to have the mistreatment of persons with mental health in the city of Kitchener acknowledged.

Political Violence, who are the real terrorists?

22 Mar

Yesterday after doing two really amazing radio shows and playing with my new kitten I decided to check my blog. Now because of being sick
I havent written anything new for a while, but still post stuff from time to time. I took my meds from my doc because i already puked twice in
the studio and needed to sleep. On the referrals page I saw something really strange here it is: Today Yesterday Summaries Referrer Views
1 Total views referred by links to your blog 1. I click on the refferal to see what the story was and was told could not access this without a password. I went and checked other groups on the main page with similar results. I sent some msgs out o people to find out what the story
was only to have a wave of tiredness hit me and to find out that my new kitten mistook my bed for a washroom. I tried to sleep but then decided that i would do some research on who these guys are.Some comrades on FB have confirmed my research here is the post “This is a link to apus. American public university. System it has a secondary branch called American military university or amu for short.
If it has a link to you blog or something it means they are reading it in course work.”

Why is my blog being used in course work on political violence and counter terrorism? Yes have a lengthy arrest record but only one conviction, I never bombed anyone and the only violence I have ever used at protests is in response to police violence, and have been acquitted every time. I decided to look up other groups I know
that are political like the 32’s etc. and they are on it despite the fact that they are not terrorist and are a legitimate political organization. Like my blog you need a password to check. Other subjects included environmentalism indigenous rights etc.

Not being able to sleep i called an ex of mine who use to work for the OIPRD but quit cause they are fucks. Shes like this better be important julian, im like why is my blog being used as an example of politicial violence, shes like can this wait till the morning? im like no. Shes like you’re an amazing activist but can be a peace of shit friend some time, i laughed.This is important, everything is important to you she said.
So we started talking and she was saying that the work we do is subversive etc. I’m like serving free food, fighting for people rights to housing etc. is subversive?Then she mentioned our reading program and how we use Mao Che etc. to educate street youth on their rights. I mentioned the fact that many of these programs are done with the help of liberal fucks and the good relations we have with various groups and social
agency’s downtown and shes like exactly your organization is not just rabblle rousers but has credibility in the community. I mention that Kitchener Waterloo is a small city of half a million and even if everyone here rose up that does not equal a revolution in KKKanada (unfortunately lol). but after further conversation it became clear that the reason they are using my writing in the syllabus is because of my politics.

Political policing plain and simple. The same reason i was part of an undercover sting operation which resulted in nothing, conspiracy charges being dropped after hanging out with an RCMPig for two years, the same reason i was charged by indictment for my blog, which i beat. The same reason that from 96 to 2006 i was in jail, on bail or house arrest with  conditions. To be a terrorist is to have a political ideology.

I brought up the fact that the 32’s were on this page as well and all you could find without the password was that they are the political wing of the Real IRA (which doesnt exist anymore) slander to criminalize them because of their politics. This slander has led to the internment of Marian Price, Martin Corey and countless others, torture stop and searches and shit i cant even imagine.
To have principles in this society of conciliation makes one a terrorist, a criminal. The same way that the Irish Freedom committee and other human rights groups were slandered and criminalized by the media for taking a just stand around PSNI participation in the St. Patricks day parade. Following Gobbels logic of the big lie,make a huge slander repeat it over and over again and people will think its the truth.

Yet the real sad thing about this is that it deflects from who the real terrorists are, the state. It was not the 32’s that shot 14 civilians at bloody sunday, it was not the 32’s that gave information to death squads to murder and kill unarmed Irish people, it was not the 32’s that strip searches and tortues people put in cages like animals to live in there own filth. The real terrorists is the colonialist state.
In the KKKanadian context it is not the political activists that shot and murdered Dudley George, nor was it activists that shot sammy, or are imposing the PAVIS model of counterinsurgency in our community. The real terrorists is the state that murders with impunity. By calling political people terrorists they can hide their own crimes and justify there polices of genocide racism and class exploitation

OCAP disrupts Liberal ‘Heritage Dinner’ – Stop the Liberal War on the Poor

21 Mar

The Ontario Liberal party’s annual lavish fundraising dinner was disrupted
this evening in Toronto by members of the Ontario Coalition Against
Poverty. In the face of grinding poverty across the province as a result
of Liberal policies, a dinner that boasts of $1500 a plate is a slap in
the face to people struggling to pay the rent or put food on the table.
Disrupters unfurled a banner demanding a raise in social assistance rates
and littering the floor with macaroni.

This action is in the lead-up to a mass mobilization this coming Saturday,
March 22nd with people coming from across the province to protest the
‘Liberal War on the Poor’ at the OLP annual meeting. The Liberals have not
only solidified the 1995 Harris government cuts, but brought down their
own brutal form of austerity. Since 2005, this government has hacked away
at the Special Diet Benefit – a food benefit – making it almost impossible
to access.

Then in 2012 the Liberals announced the cut to Community Start-Up and
Maintenance Benefit – a benefit to get people housed, used often by those
who are homeless, in the shelter system, leaving an institution, or women
escaping domestic violence. This is on top of failing to raise the rates
of social assistance to any livable amount let alone keep up with
inflation. Today people are living on social assistance rates that are at
least 55% below where they should be. Wynne talks about social justice,
but few across the province have seen any evidence of that.

“We will not let the rich dine at our expense or at least not dine in
peace. The poor will not suffer in silence and we are fighting back!”

Join the March 22nd mobilization – no matter who is in power this spring –
Stop the War on the Poor, Raise the Rates NOW!

Irish Republican Army statement on attack of PSNI scum

19 Mar

On Friday March 14 2014 at 10.30pm an Active Service Unit of the Irish Republican Army embarked on an operation against British state forces, namely a PSNI patrol. This attack involved the I.R.A striking a PSNI Land Rover as it passed the City Cemetery on Belfast’s Falls Road.

The I.R.A had a second ASU with automatic weapons close by with the intention of engaging personnel who exited vehicles. The device used in the offensive action was an Explosively Formed Penetrator (EFP), detonated via command wire.

These devices form a major part of the I.R.A’s already substantial weapons inventory. Our development of this type of device is further evidence of the increasing expertise and ingenuity of our Engineering Department. The precision of the device is evidenced by the fact that it struck its intended target.

The PSNI are the vangaurd of British occupation in Ireland. They are heavily armed protectors of the state enforcing British law in Ireland. They engage in the harassment of Irish Citizens on a daily basis, arrest republicans, and facilitate the work of MI5 with the full knowledge and backing of the British Government. For These reasons the PSNI are legitimate targets for the I.R.A.

The I.R.A has demonstrated its ability to excecute PSNI personnel in the past and will continue to do so in the future.


Report on March Against Police Brutality

16 Mar

Today on March 15th people in Kitchener gathered at city hall to take a stand against police brutality and against the militarization of the police through the implementation of the Provincial Anti-Violence Strategy (PAVIS) counterinsurgency model. The “2nd Peoples Report on Policing”, put together by interviewing people directly affected by PAVIS and who experience this new model of “community policing”, was also released on this day.

The event began with speakers and then people took to the street blocking traffic, taking an intersection, and chanting slogans against police brutality and criminalization.

The event ended at Division One which was on lock-down with police refusing to come out and take the Peoples Report. This was later rectified by protestors surrounding a cruiser doing survallence and demanding that they take the report and give it to the active staff seargent.

People then spoke about the brutalization they felt at the hands of the police. One protestor spoke about how the police didn’t care about the  disappearance of her friend and how they waited nine days before even putting her on the missing case, followed by slacking off ever since.

The spirit of the demonstration was one of resistance as speakers and attendees made it quite clear that they had no interest in reforming a system that is desined to destroy the lives of marginalized people and is built to enforce and maintain colonialism, genocide, systemic racism, and class oppression.

Those in attendance were not there to demand that police take sensitivity training classes before they kicked the shit out of you, nor were they there to try to come to some understanding with those whose boots have been on their neck for so many years, but rather to affirm their basic rights that they have by virtue of being human and defend them.

2nd Peoples Report On Policing

15 Mar

One year has passed since the creation of our last Peoples report on policing which aimed at understanding the impact of
implementing the PAVIS model of policing on our community. Within that year the PAVIS model of “Community”Policing”has
become entrenched in at risk communities and it is not uncommon to see stop and searches, police presence in community
centres and other such matters of police spying and intimidation.

In response to this, KW Occupy, The Spot Collective, and Basics Community News Service interviewed 40 people from the
East end and downtown of Kitchener to come up with our own understanding of policing and the PAVIS model.

Interactions with Police in the last year.

Respondents felt that in the last year due to public pressure, protest and lawsuits police are less likely to do somethings
illegal in public and that there has been a decrease in arbitrary arrests and beatings, but this does not change the fact
that those interviewed have felt an increase in legal harassment as well as felt that there has been an increase in police
presence downtown and in community centres.

Those interviewed feel that with this presence in community centres, staff and social workers are more likely to
collaborate in terms of giving information to police as well as handing people over. Respondents also feel that
Police are less likely to release people on a Promise to appear and more and more people are being held in jail
awaiting trial or forced to plead guilty to lesser charges to get out.

Targeted Communities

The people interviewed felt that it was likely to face arbitrary arrest, and brutalization if one was from
a marginalized community or if one does not have access to lawyers and social networks that can raise awareness
or hype around a specific case. From their own experience respondents stated the differences that they have seen
in terms of arrest, beating and length of time in jail without bail between those people who have contacts and
those that don’t. Respondents have also noted that PAVIS and police patrol marginalized community’s more frequently
then other community’s.

Respondents feel that police are more likely to stop and search youth in these communities, not just as a tool of
harassment but rather to know who is who. They feel that this makes them more vulnerable to police as they are more
likely to be mistreated because they are known to police.

Use of Force

Respondents felt that there was an increase in the last year of police using “non lethal” force when making arrests
as well as using force instead of dialogue particularly when dealing with people with mental health issues and that
there is an increase in police dealing with mental health issues despite the fact that they are not trained to do so.

One youth described how he was tasered 17 time despite the fact that he was already immobilized. Another youth recounted
his experience of watching 4 cops brutalizing an elderly mentally ill man despite the fact that he posed no threat to himself
and others. One native youth described how police called an ambulance to be on standby when they arrested him.

Infiltration, intimidation and political policing.

Those interviewed discussed at length attempts by police to intimidate them from participating in protests or hanging out with
people who are seen as political. As well people described how the tactic of “chatting people up” has increased as way to gather information.
People have also described police arresting people on minor offenses and then telling people that they will be released if they give information.

The attempts to recruit informers has increased according to respondents, one of whom described his experience of being stopped by police for allegedly
having a stolen bike and told that if he needs money he can work for them.

Respondents have also described heavy police presence outside of public meetings and harassment for attending functions of a political nature and the fear
of participating in such event so as they do not become targets.

Direct from Cuba! Gerardo Alfonso with special guest Sandra Ramirez North American Specialist Cuban Institute of Friendship with the Peoples

13 Mar

******Please forward widely*****
The Hamilton Friendship Association with Cuba and Matapa Proudly Present:

Tuesday April 1 6:30pm

Bryan Prince Bookseller, 1060 King St W
$10- PWYC- No one turned away!

The Hamilton Friendship Association with Cuba and Matapa Music and Arts Organization and are pleased to announce the only Hamilton stop on a nation-wide tour of famed trova musician Gerardo Alfonso. He will be accompanied by our friend Sandra Ramirez of the Cuban Institute for Friendship with the Peoples (ICAP). Gerardo will perform his well known and loved Neuva Trova songs and Sandra will discuss the October 2014 World Conference in Solidarity with Cuba, the 3rd of its kind.

About Gerardo
Gerardo Alfonso was born in Havana in 1958. He began as a trova musician under the influence of the Cuban form of nueva canción (new song). He has shared the stage with Maria Bethania, Pablo Milanes, Silvio Rodriguez, Carlos Verela, Frank Delgado and many others.

His lyrics have assured him a place in the hearts of all Cubans, just as his fusion work has won him high marks among specialized critics. His songs incorporate elements of Latin American music —basically Brazilian and Caribbean— but he has also understood how to take advantage of his urban and popular roots in a range of mixtures that span from rock and reggae to rap and guaguanco, though never abandoning his trova essence.

Alfonso explores the depths of themes such as love, humanity, society and life. His songs have been performed by Grupo Moncada, Santiago Feliu and Ireno Garcia, among other Cuban musical figures and groups.

About ICAP
ICAP is the HFAC’s sister organization in Cuba. Its work is focused on promoting people to people exchange and friendship between Cubans and peoples around the world. It strives to act as a force for peace, mutual exchange and true internationalism in the world.

The 3rd World Conference in Solidarity with Cuba
October 27-31, 2014
-International Convention Center, Havana-

The conference, organized by the Cuba Solidarity Movement, follows on from the two previous editions, and represents international support for the validity of the emblematic model of Cuban social justice and its viability as an alternative for “the better world,” for which the peoples are fighting.

Guided by the anti-imperialist, visionary and humanist thinking of José Martí and Fidel, the eternal leaders and exponents of Cuban traditions, this conference demonstrates Cuba’s internationalist vocation and solidarity with all noble causes for the benefit of the peoples and their enjoyment of fundamental human rights: freedom, peace and social justice.

From this Afro-Asian, Latin American and Caribbean island, in the 54th year of the Revolution, ICAP invites all forces, movements, groups, and persons of goodwill, to emphasize all that unites us, while respecting differences which, at the end of the day, constitute the richness of diversity.

Join us for this intimate evening of socio-political entertainment and discussion. There is limited seating so arrive early! Need a ride? Want to get involved? Contact us at