OK, a few notes as we get the days started.
First off, yesterday over 3,000 people visited this blog, and i would guess at least ten times that many read the articles i have been translating as they were posted to various indymedia sites, alternative news sites, and other blogs (left, right and curious).
What started out as an attempt to translate some impossible-to-find-in-English left-wing accounts of the French riots and what has led up to them has snowballed into something i had not expected!
Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin has now pushed through his emergency legislation, and his cabinet has approved the introduction of curfews. It should be noted that this legislation has not been used since the Algerian war of independence (1954-1962), meaning that the French State is now implicitly acknowledging what radicals and people on the grounds have been saying for years: the State policy towards the immigrant population in France is essentially a colonial policy. The police are indeed a “foreign occupying force.”
At the same time, the riots show no sign of abating, and are in fact spreading outside of France. Showing that what is happening is not so much about two kids who were chased to their deaths by police, nor even about how immigrant communities suffer within France, but rather about a kind of structural racism that exists throughout the capitalist west.
I will continue to provide translations of what i deem to be important or interesting French texts for as long as i have time to do so. Please note that i do not necessarily agree with everything i am translating – though i obviously think it is all worth reading.
Today i am fairly busy with other plans, though i do intend to get a few texts done. I am also specifically requesting that if anybody has first person accounts of the riots, of how people arrested are being treated, and also anything from a radical perspective by radical women from the cités or involved in the communities effected, please let me know.
Alright then, on to translations…