From The Trenches Radio for April: From Disney to Drone Wars - A Critical Settler Perspective

From The Trenches is the monthly radio program of the Chicago Independent Media Center.



Longtime political activist and Indymedia contributor Jimmy Johnson gives a wide-ranging lecture about history and colonization in the United States and Palestine.

* Plus, headlines from the worldwide Indymedia network.




From The Trenches airs on the 4th Sunday of each month at 6pm on WLUW 88.7 on Chicago northside radio:

From The Trenches also airs on the immediately subsequent Thursday at 1:30pm on WHPK 88.5 on Chicago southside radio:


Brazilian Peasant Rights' Activist and Educator Assassinated
Brazil Indymedia reported on the assassination of a peasant rights' activist and teacher. Renato Nathan Gonçalves Periera was executed on April 10, 2012, killed, according to witnesses, by three plainclothes police officers firing three shots at close range. Gonçalves worked as a teacher, organized campaigns for youth and adult literacy, and provided support for peasant efforts in the Brazilian state of Rondônia. Residents said that Gonçalves' killing was a revenge killing for the death of a prison guard and police officer, though the police, at the behest of land owners and property speculators, are often involved in killing peasants. Local activists also complained about what was deemed to be a police propaganda campaign, dismissing Goncalves' organizing and educational history, and claiming that his house contained "guerilla" literature. Gonçalves was 28 years old, married with a two-year-old daughter.

Argentina Indymedia pro-LGBT Facebook Page Censored
Argentina Indymedia reported that an Indymedia page on Facebook was censored, presumably due to its pro-gay-rights content. On April 14, 2012, members of Indymedia Cordoba logged on to their Facebook page, found that its access required an additional level of user authentication, and then saw a message which can be translated as follows: "We have censored content that you published. We have eliminated the following content that you published or that you administer because it fails to fulfill the declaration of rights and responsibility of Facebook,". The content in question was a photo of 15 people looking at a camera and standing at an event called "Day of Pride and Lesbian Dissidence: Celebration of Lovers." Indymedia Cordoba released a statement condemning the suppression of free speech by Facebook, while also tolerating sexist, misogynist, and homophobic materials.

New Orleans Activists Stage Solidarity Noise Demonstration Outside Prison
New Orleans Indymedia featured a solidarity noise demonstration outside a New Orleans prison. Quoting from the feature, dated November 11, 2011: "A group of about two dozen protesters marched to the fences of Orleans Parish Prison, at Broad & Tulane, on November 9th banging pots and pans and shouting chants. The prisoners could be seen inside the prison from stories above waving their arms and pieces of clothing. The event was described as a noise making act to let the prisoners know there are others outside that stand in solidarity with them."

Occupy sites in Rochester and DC attacked
DC Indymedia and Rochester Indymedia reported on attacks against the Occupy Movement in both cities. In the early morning hours of March 20th, a tent at the Occupy Rochester encampment was set on fire; one person inside the tent was hospitalized for burns and for exposure to flammable chemicals. Rochester Police ruled the fire an accident, though other tents were doused with other flammable liquids and a book of matches was found. The Rochester Fire Department continued investigating at the time of the feature. And on March 29th at Noon Eastern, US Park Police invaded the McPherson Square campsite of Occupy DC, removed an information tent and all of its content, and violently arrested a woman trying to reclaim her belongings from the tent. Members of Occupy DC were outraged over the incident, and a proposal to blockade K Street in retaliation was narrowly voted down. Almost two hours after the raid, a replacement tent was found an put into operation.

Atlanta Police Evict Troy Davis Park Occupation
Atlanta Indymedia reported on the eviction of another occupation. Quoting from the feature, dated April 13th: "Early Wednesday morning [April 11th], police evicted the occupation outside Troy Davis Park in downtown Atlanta. Nobody was arrested, but tents were seized by police, and some [tents] were destroyed. The encampment was led and organized by homeless people. In addition to losing their tent city, some occupiers lost all of their personal belongings. [In March, the Atlanta] City Council passed an ordinance targeted against "urban camping", which makes all occupations on city property illegal. The ordinance was not enforced until [April 11th, the day the Troy Davis Park occupation was evicted], which [coincided with the arrival of movie trailers and camera crews] across the street to shoot the USA Network cable TV show, "Necessary Roughness".

Winnemem Wintu Tribal Leaders Challenge Forest Service to Protect Native Women's Rights
A feature on Indybay dated April 20th was headlined "Winnemem Wintu Tribal Leaders Challenge Forest Service to Protect Native Women's Rights". Quoting from the feature: "Members of the Winnenmem Wintu Tribe from northern California on Monday, April 16 challenged Randy Moore, U.S. Forest Service Regional Forester, at his Vallejo office to protect indigenous women from racial slurs and physical harm during coming of age ceremonies planned for this June. Although claiming to be unfamiliar with the issue, Moore promised to review the Winnemem's request to close 400 yards of the McCloud River arm of Shasta Reservoir for 4 days so that the Tribe can conduct the ceremony. Moore committed to respond to the Tribe's request by May 1, 2012. While closing the river will mean a lot to the Tribe, it will have no impact on the Forest Service. During a Coming of Age Ceremony in 2006, a woman “flashed” the ceremonial participants with naked breasts and yelled racist insults. “If someone did this during Mass, they would be arrested,” said Caleen Sisk, Winnemem Chief and Spiritual Leader. “Like many traditional people, we hold our women in high regard," said Sisk. "This beautiful ceremony is vital to our girls' transitioning to womanhood with confidence, grace and knowledge. We must hold this ceremony for our tribe to survive."

Move to Amend Votes in Urbana and Champaign
Urbana-Champaign Indymedia reported on two anti-corporate referenda up for local votes. Quoting from the feature: "On Tuesday, April 10, the Champaign and Urbana (Cunningham) Township meetings had on their agendas two items to be voted on by all registered voters in attendance. One item calls for an item to be added to the November ballot which urges representatives, from the local to national level, to endorse an Amendment which declares corporations do not have the same rights as people and states that legislation should be pursued which challenges the Citizens United Supreme Court decision by re-enacting curbs on corporate spending in elections. Another adds to the November ballot a measure which challenges corporate enclosure of the commons by establishing laws in Champaign/Urbana which allow non-disruptive forms of free speech in areas where private business can currently prohibit it, such as private parking lots and malls." Occupy Champaign-Urbana reported that three of the township items introduced that evening were approved (both items in Urbana, and the anti-corporate personhood endorsement in Champaign). They will be on the ballot in November.

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