Bill Weinberg speaks on ecological campesino resistance in Peru

The Libertarian Book Club,* New York City’s oldest continuously active anarchist institution (founded 1946), kicks off a new season of its Anarchist Forum series as World War 4 Report editor Bill Weinberg, just returned from Peru where he was on assignment for The Progressive, speaks about the Quechua indigenous struggle against US-backed mining projects and in defense of land, water and autonomy in the Andes.

The high Andean region of Cajamarca has been repeatedly paralyzed by general strikes and angry protests in recent months by Quechua peasants opposed to the US-owned Conga gold mining project, which would mean the destruction of mountain lakes that protect the watersheds that local communities depend on for agriculture. Cajamarca’s regional government, with the support of the peasant movement, has declared against the project—but the central government in Lima remains intransigent, and is militarizing the region. The lines are drawn for a protracted struggle.

This is a sequel to the strikes and uprisings in Peru in 2009 over oil and mineral development plans tied to the new Free Trade Agreement with Washington—itself an echo of the Zapatista revolt in Mexico that followed the enactment of NAFTA. Peru is now Latin America’s second country to be pushed to crisis by an FTA with the US—and South America’s second largest recipient of US military aid after Colombia. Bill Weinberg will discuss the new peasant struggle in Peru, how US corporate interests are pushing President Ollanta Humala towards a hard line, and the prospects for building solidarity.

Tuesday May 15
7:30 PM sharp
at the Brecht Forum, 451 West Street
(between Bank & Bethune in the West Village)

*The Anarchist Forum is a project of the Libertarian Book Club, New York’s oldest active anarchist institution, founded by Jewish and Italian exiles from fascist Europe in 1946. We are not right-wing, capital-L Libertarians. We are left-wing anarchists. When LBC was founded, the word “libertarian” had not yet been co-opted by the free-market right, and was basically a synonym for “anti-authoritarian” or “anarchist.” We stubbornly refuse to surrender the name.

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