Anti-Imperialist Camp

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The Anti-imperialist Camp is an international organisation which brings together several different movements dedicated to opposing imperialism.

History[edit]

The first activities began in 1990 as a summer camp and cultural-political meeting organised within the framework of the Revolutionary Communist League (RCL), an originally Trotskyist movement, based in Austria, in partnership with an Italian organisation.

In the mid-1990s, the RCL gradually detached itself from more dogmatic forms of Marxist thinking, and began to concentrate on the issue of anti-imperialism.

Around 1996, the Camp took on an autonomous existence of its own, becoming an international point of reference for movements coming from very different backgrounds and countries, and became especially involved in the Balkan conflict, where it was one of very few movements on the Left to defend Yugoslavia.

The Camp is both a coordination of movements, active all year around, and a public event, held in various places. For several years, the Camp was held in Assisi, Italy, because of its symbolic value as the town of peace.

After the September 11 attacks, the Camp declared that "those who sow storms, reap whirlwinds", and strongly opposed the wars on Afghanistan and then on Iraq.

Though part of the anti-globalisation movement, the Camp has never joined the Social Forum, because of the Forum's refusal to take the side of various popular resistance movements in the world: especially, the Camp has expressed support for resistance movements in Palestine, Afghanistan and Iraq.

As a consequence, the Camp has often been accused in the media of "supporting terrorism". However, the Camp explicitly states that it does not support violence in countries where the law guarantees human rights, and its activities are always public.

Especially controversial has been the Camp's position "in favour of the Iraqi resistance", covering both secular and religious movements opposed to the US presence in Iraq, ranging from the Iraqi Patriotic Alliance to the movement of Moqtada al-Sadr. All these movements, and the Camp, strongly oppose partition of Iraq and sectarian strife, and are therefore hostile to the movement of Abu Mus'ab al-Zarqawi.

Support for the Iraqi resistance has led to threats of legal action against the Camp, both in Italy and the U.S., and to an appeal by 44 members of the US congress to ban a conference on Iraq scheduled for October 1–2, 2005, in Italy, which has the Camp among its sponsors. This conference would have brought together all the main forces of the Iraqi resistance on a common platform, in order to present a peace project to the Italian government.

After the Italian government refused visas to the Iraqi delegates supposed to attend the conference, the conference has been postponed, but is scheduled again for March 24–25, 2007, in Chianciano, Tuscany. It will be under the title, "With the Resistance, for a Just Peace in the Middle East" and will include intellectuals associated with the Palestinian and Lebanese resistance movements.

External links[edit]