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Anti-Nato Demonstration and Conference in Krakow:

On the 18-20 of February there was an informal meeting of defense ministers from NATO countries in Krakow. Anarchists prepared protest activities during that time.

On 18 of February there were anti-militarist films. The main events, a demo and counterball, were held on Feb. 19. A few hundred people demonstrated against NATO, mostly anarchists. They had slogans such as "The government to the front" "No war but class war" and "NATO - legal terrorists".

The situation was very tense since the city was like a police state. The cops were checking people at the borders, even though there weren't more than an handful of people from other countries there. Before the demo, the sound truck was stopped and police were stopping people and checking their bags. One guy who did not answer a call to go to the police in relation to the Nov. 11 demo in Warsaw was arrested as was somebody with a flare.

(Ironically, protesting police demonstrated in Krakow and Gdansk that day and they threw firecrackers. So only police are allowed to use "illegal" pyrotechnics.)

During the demo there were some speeches and a march to the location of the NATO meeting, although police tried to block this, people eventually got through.

In the evening there was a counterball across from the venue of the NATO ball. There was a much smaller crowd since most people left after the demo - a shame since the next day also had some events. The ball was however hard to notice because three times as many cops than anarchists surrounded it and blocked the view. It was extremely difficult to get to - basically it was only possible if you were a single person who managed to slide pass the cops. Afterwards, when everybody was going home, the police started harassing people again and arrested somebody for having a stick. At least a dozen people had sticks since people had flags with them, but this guy took his flag off, which apparently made the stick a weapon.

The next day there was a modest conference on NATO, militarism and responses to it. There were films, presentations and talks made by the Anarchist Federation Krakow and ZSP. There was also a guest from the Anarchist Federation of France who invited people to attend the anti-NATO demos in Strasbourg at the beginning of April.

More information on that can be found on the Dissent! page: http://www.dissent.fr/
Videos from Krakow: http://cia.bzzz.net/wideo_z_demonstracji_antynato
Photos: http://cia.bzzz.net/fotki_z_antyszczytu

Source: http://mollymew.blogspot.com/2009/02/international-anarchist-movement-poland_21.html