Challenging the Empire

Yesterday evening I went on the march for peace. For more details see:

This morning´s workshop focused on Christians and Muslims working together to challenge the way imperalism divides and destroys communities. We heard from activists in various countries and contexts, often speaking directly about the impact of American imperialism but recognising that America co-ops other countries (including Britain).

We were urged to learn to think critically about world events and to learn to see the connections between economics and political rhetoric. We reflected on how security and ´clean living´ are achieved for a few at the expense of massive destruction of the environment and abuse of other people. Of course, we also spent a lot of time talking about the ´war on terror´ and were encouraged to challenge ways of talking about violence that hide the violence of American and western imperialism. One example given by a European group training people in non-violence was of an application for funding that the group discovered was supported by Shell. The application asked for support in retraining Nigerian women to be ´less aggressive´in their demonstrations against Shell activities in Nigeria!

Above all, we were encouraged to keep together, and offer solidarity to Muslims and groups that are victimised and demonised in the current political climate.