Resisting the Powers of Empire: Protesting NATO in Chicago

Last weekend, several members of Amos House attended the “Faith and Resistance Retreat” hosted by Catholic Workers in Chicago in preparation for the NATO protests that are happening now and will continue throughout this weekend.

Below, you’ll find the powerful statement from Catholic Workers on the NATO and G8 summits along with some links, info, and tips for following the events and protests that are happening in Chicago.

– Here is a good overview of what is going on and why we should resist NATO and the G8: http://cang8.org/wp-content/uploads/NATO_G8_leaflet1.pdf

–  Here is a link to a blog our friend Tristan, a member of the Nashville Greenlands who is in Chicago, writes: http://themormonworker.wordpress.com/. It has a brief update on what has been happening in Chicago at the People’s Summit and the action that we did against NATO on Monday the 14th that was beautiful and got a lot of good press.

– Follow/search #NoNATO and #ChicagoSpring on Twitter (if you do that kind-of thing

– Helpful websites: http://chicagospring.org/http://natoprotest.org/http://occupywallst.org/



*Catholic Worker Statement on NATO-G8 Summits

Since the end of the Cold War, NATO forces—led by US interests and the West’s insatiable appetite for oil and free markets—have been controversially involved in conflicts in the Balkans, Iraq, Afghanistan, and Libya. In 2012, NATO countries spent a collective $1.08 trillion on defense and military expenditures, including a resurgence of nuclear weapons. The US and NATO are leading the way for the militarization of the globe at the expense of human and environmental needs. We say no to nuclear weapons, no to the out-of-control defense spending, and no to the logic of violence.

The G8—the Group of Eight,  including the US, Russia, Canada, Japan, Italy, Germany, France and the UK—represent the destructive engines of capitalism whose “growth-at-all-costs” mentality has desecrated communities, the environment, and human rights all in the name of progress. As people of faith and conscience, we advocate relationships and economics rooted in love: the works of mercy at a personal sacrifice, craft and worker-based cooperatives, gift and barter economies, agrarian communities, and a more simple lifestyle. Let love be our guide for our collective future without war and capitalism.

As Catholic Workers, we call for May 18-21 to be a weekend of nonviolent protest against the capitalism and militarism of NATO-G8. Catholic Worker communities around the country are invited to engage in “A Weekend without Capitalism”—a four day act of noncooperation where we refuse to participate in the political and economic structures that oppress our sisters and brothers, harm our communities, and destroy our environment. We will take time off work and school and, instead, invest this time into healthy, just, and sustainable alternatives for our communities. We will not support the corporate state by using our cars or consuming goods or services from which the state profits. Instead, we will do as Jesus taught us: feed the hungry, clothe the naked, and visit the imprisoned. We will protest injustice and war, host free markets and skill shares, work on community gardens, invest in alternative economics, act as peacemakers and organize our neighborhoods for direct action.

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