Recently completed the annual world social forum is the main platform of the global anti-globalization movement. On the pages of the leading electronic media and pages of Newspapers, this event did not get. They are interested in the anti-globalization movement only when attacking the “McDonald’s” or organize riots and clashes with the police. I propose to look into the forum closer to understand, than there lives the modern anti-globalization social protest:
The singularity of the Montreal forum
The current world social forum (hereafter VSF) is unusual in many respects. Has changed time and venue. Usually, the WSF has convened in January, making it clear that it is being developed the global strategy of protests for the current year. This is the first year the forum was held in the middle of the year from 8 to 14 August.
Usually VSF were carried out in the countries of the so-called “global South”, thus, as it were articulable interest, as once was customary to say, underdeveloped or “developing” countries. The first three of alter forum held the student of the Brazilian city of Porto Alegre, then in 2004, he was held in Mumbai (India), in 2005 once again in Porto Alegre, in 2006 in Caracas (Venezuela), then in Nairobi (Kenya), Belem (Brazil), Dakar (Senegal) and finally in Tunisia. Since the convening of the first WSF was held eleven such events.
This forum is notable for the fact that for the first time the WSF was organized in a country of the global North, but rather, “the global West” – in the canadian city of Montreal. It is no coincidence that the leitmotif of this forum was the theme of internationalism is a call to unite efforts of the peoples and social movements from the global South” and “global West”. Perhaps, of all previous forums such internazionalisti call was made most clearly and vividly. Only one that you can put “like” (in Russian- thank) the organizers of the canadian VSF.
In addition, the canadian VSF became a kind of “jubilee” meeting – has been exactly fifteen years since the first WSF in Porto Alegre, a city-symbol of the world alterglobalist movement.
Alterglobalism: what is it?
A few words about the background of the WSF, what is “anti-globalism” his world “tests” that they managed to achieve. The participants of the movement call themselves “alter -“, and this is no coincidence. The label of “antiglobalism” invented by the media and imposed on the movement. The movement is not against globalization itself, but against its neo-liberal form, against neoliberalism, and with it – for a different, a fair globalization. However, to achieve success in the development of an alternative globalization movement in fact it failed. At one time it seemed that such a project could become an international integration project of ALBA (the Bolivarian alternative (later renamed the Bolivarian Alliance), created in 2005, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez. At the beginning of the alter-globalization supported by ALBA, but then enthusiasm waned, and their by and large dispersed.
The great success of the alter-globalization is the breakdown of the negotiations on the free trade Area of the Americas (FTAA) in 2005. Then, under the powerful pressure of social movements, the governments of South America refused to negotiate with US about the conclusion of this predatory Treaty, which gave carte Blanche to multinational corporations threatened the economic sovereignty of most Latin American States. On the wave of protests against the FTAA had been convened by the first WSF in Brazil, passed with great enthusiasm. But after reaching this goal, the movement has gradually decreased its activity. Now it is almost not visible, and the main indicator is the following.
Currently in the global agenda is the issue of contracts for TRANS-Atlantic and Pacific partnerships. These are direct analogues disrupted once the contract ALKA, but erected in a multiple degree and scale, and on threats to nation-States. But the alter-globalization silent. Well-coordinated, on an international scale stock no, there are isolated protests, but what can they give? It seems to me that massive “silence” of the alter-globalization in relation to TTIP – the main indicator of the weakness of the contemporary alter-globalization.
This is the atmosphere that has passed the canadian jubilee VSF. He was the smallest in the entire history of these forums, bringing 35 thousand people from 125 countries (for example in Mumbai was 80 thousand in Tunisia – 60 thousand). However, we must recognize that the canadian authorities made every effort to disrupt the forum. As the organizers say, visas are not given about 70% announced its participation of the representatives of mainly Latin American and African countries. Well, it is quite predictable. Who wants to admit to “calm civilized” countries troublemakers and rioters, the image of which by far was assigned to the alter? No wonder, therefore, that the right to “free movement” became a Central forum.
The meeting format was the same as in the previous, numerous assemblies, and round tables. In the end there was held a General meeting called, clearly appealing to ancient Greek democracy: “Agora initiatives for a Better world”.
Will give the floor to one of the organizers of the forum. Carminda MC Laurin, a member of the organizing Committee of the WSF in 2016, said: “with regard to the positive aspects of the forum, I think that we have made connections effort in the designation of the importance of international solidarity on the axis North-South-North. It was obvious that for the audience here of people such solidarity is a recognized and high value.”
Usually at the end of each meeting they agreed on the time and place of holding the next WSF. On the Montreal forum did not happen, and it did not disappoint. The future of the WSF, in particular, and the alter-globalization maximally uncertain, since the participants can’t zorganizowania and negotiate. But it is uncertain and in a broader context. Namely, in terms of political articulation and focus the efforts of alter-globalization.
Anlytic on the website “rebellion” groundless claims: “a Space like the WSF does not have a unified and common voice. No one can speak politically on behalf of the entire movement. You can put the movement to blame, it has to speak politically on every issue on the global agenda, but it does not, and is unlikely to this can.”
Can agree with this. Alter-globalization has not become a political factor of global significance and yet Oh so far from it. It is dominated by the anarchic and network sentiments, the structure is very amorphous and incapable of concentrating.
Of course, there were precedents in some degree successful politicization of alter-globalization. It happened in Spain. On the wave of social protests in 2011, it would seem that the alter-globalization received a “second wind”. The country was literally rocked by the protests of the so-called movement of “the indignant”. Social energy could translate into the political mainstream. In the result of the “perturbed” arose and went out into the political arena of the political movement “Podemos”. But according to eyewitnesses the “Podemos” is inherent in “birthmarks” of alter-globalization. It is extremely loose and amorphous structure, capable of simultaneous focus, for example, before the election, but not ready for sustained activity.
Apparently, such a network structure, which is, alter-globalization thing of the past. In the agenda a question on creation of dense, capable of regular activities and to coordinate efforts online structures. While those in the “field” of alter-globalization is not observed. The extent to which most movement will be able to organize and implement this transformation in the direction of the density and regularity – depends the fate of the alter-globalization and the prospect for a revival in a new role as a full-fledged subject if not a world, regional or national policy.