The new face of European resistance – Protests at the EU summit in Gothenburg, Sweden 2017 and the political background

This material is a report from protests and a seminar i Gothenburg November 16-17, 2017. Activists for peace (In Swedish: Aktivister för fred) was one of the organizations coarranging the seminar.

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Why the EU protests in Gothenburg, Sweden 2017 makes a difference

1. Movements from all of Europe came together. From the East and the West, from the South and the North.

2. Popular movements independent from political parties took the leading role in connecting issues building both alliances across established parliamentarian issue sectors as well as going much further criticizing the whole development model and the present world order. With the support of MEPs.

3. Rural and urban movements were equally important, ecological issues as important as social.

4. The coming together of all movements had its roots in growing cooperation between popular movements uniting peasant, environmental and solidarity organizations struggling for food sovereignty; these movements together with trade unions against TTIP and CETA; peace, trade unions and environmentalists against militarization and for climate transition; refugee becoming more EU-critical connecting to other movements and in general movements democratizing society and building for alternatives to EU austerity politics.

5. EU politics was challenged at all levels, from social policy to the EU growth model, the two official summit issues.

6. The follow up possibilities are many at all levels from the local to the international. Especially on transversal issues and in general for all-European cooperation including both non-EU and EU countries, both East and West as well as the next World Social Forum in Brazil, March 2018.

Read the report as a pdf here: The new face of European resistance


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Foreword: “Only united can we achieve change”

The EU bears responsibility on so many levels – from the current economic system that’s devastated our planet to human tragedies due to climate change. What we have also been seeing in the past couple of years is a humanitarian crisis – or better said- a crisis of humanity. We need collective action for social transformation. We need a systemic change in order to achieve climate justice. And this change, this transition, needs to be driven by principles of justice. Because we do not want to replicate the current system that is exploiting people. We need to build a better one, a more human one. What needs to be done to make this happen is movement building. And this movement needs to be inclusive and collaborative. A movement that is not just an environmental one. But which brings together all the injustices created by the system. Which recognises that some are suffering more than others as a result of these injustices. And which says: Refugees welcome. Black lives matter. Gender justice. Social justice. Because only united can we achieve change. Another Europe can and will be possible because people have the power.

Maruska Mileta from Friends of the Earth Croatia
in a speech at the Alternative Summit manifestation
at Gustav Adolfs Torg 
in Gothenburg, Sweden, November 17, 2017

Content

p2 Foreword: “Only united can we achieve change”
p3 Op-Ed and content
p4-7 Activities during the Alternative Summit
p8-13 Social rights & fair jobs everywhere!
p14-15 Another Europe is possible
p16-19 EU – The dictatorship of capitalism. EU history and whose interests it serves

– Kajsa Ekis Ekman
– The case of Greece
– Bike action against corporate EU

p20-25 Stop Corporate power!

– Lora Verheecke
– CEO articles

p26-31 Refugees Welcome!

– International Call for PPT
– Emancipation with refugees, not from them! CEESF in Wroclaw
– The rise of the far right
– Closing borders to refugees and migrants is unjust and dangerous!

p32-43 Peace on Earth – Peace with Earth

– Dave Webb
– Militarization of information: NATO and EU propaganda is now called Strategic Communications
– Building peace in Warsaw
– EU loves NATO
– Anti-militarism and socio-ecological transition in unity
– We need a new critical and indepedent peace movement

p44-47 System change – not climate change!

– Maruska Mileta
– Climate transition
– COP23: EU acts as if climate change a distant prospect
– COP23: From the coal mine to the conference

p48-55 The EU and agroindustrial threat to family farmers and society

– Ole Jacob Christensen- Via Campesina Europe articles

p56-65 Alternatives to EU austerity politic

– Basic income workshop
– Matyas Benyik
– Marko Ulvila
– The hidden agenda of the European Union
– Keynes and his critics in the same boat
– Austerity measures in Central and Eastern Europe, especially in Hungary
– The Collapse of the Eastern EU model

p66-69 Just transition & No to EU growth model

– EU-critical economic theory

p70-73 EU a tool for neocolonialism

– EU rewrites history

p74-79 The Future of EU

– Black Swans Queuing in Europe

p80-93 The road to Gothenburg

– Resisting EU in Sweden
– Time to build resistance in Europe
– Internationalism more necessary than ever
– Movements challenging the European Crisis
– Another internationalism is possible
– Left projects in Western Europe
– No Future without peasants!
– Behind the scenes

p94-95 Call for unity

p96-104 The road from Gothenburg

– World Social Forum – Alternative to Capitalism
– A new people’s global initiative
– Another Europe in the Making
– Reflections after the alternative EU summit

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Integrity Initiative links from around 40 countries and some Atlantic Council links – Content

Here you find an overview of the content in our list of Integrity Initiative links from 36 countries and some Atlantic Council links. The list is compiled by Activist for peace, Sweden, January 5, 2019 and it contains four parts. Each part is linked from this blogpost. You find that the headings below are clickable.

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Screenprint of UK Column: “What is the Integrity Iniative? A short briefing paper.”, December 2018.

Each part with links includes mainly unique texts. Reposted and republished text have been avoided; unless there is a specific interest in terms of additional comments, languages or countries.

When the title is easy readable in the end of the link it is sometimes not stated in the heading. Sometimes, you also have to click on the link to check the date when the text was published.

Note that we have not made any assessment concerning trustworthiness. You have to use your own judgement; preferably by assessing the content rather than the sender. All texts have been included based on that they have some substance and that we have not missed any text. One exception is many Russian sources since we have not been able to assess them quickly.

At the moment, we have no intention to update this list. We can reconsider this if we are offered help in this work. If you want to contribute, you can contact us through our website (see above).

Content – Part 1 of 4

  • Basic information 
  • Integrity Initiative: official site, statements and leaked material
  • Atlantic Council: Kremlin’s Trojan Horses publications
  • Sources connecting Integrity Initiative and Atlantic Council

Content – Part 2 of 4: Selected UK and UK Integrity Initiative links

  • Selected Integrity Initiative links
    • 5 best Integrity Initiative main stream press stories 
    • 20 best critical Integrity Initiative stories
  • Integrity Initiative, comments, UK
    • UK press
    • UK parliamentary debate (December 12, 2018)
    • UK parliamentarians (Labour MPs)
    • UK sources via foreign media
    • UK online media
    • UK Twitter

Content – Part 3 of 4: Integrity Initiative, links sorted by countries or group of countries

Countries from and groups of countries A-U (List of countries and number of entries)

  • Azerbaijan 1
  • Australia 1
  • Austria 1
  • Bulgaria 1
  • Canada 6
  • China/Hongkong 1
  • Czechia 1
  • EU/Europe 3
  • Finland 1
  • France 1
  • Germany 10
  • Ghana 1
  • Greece 1
  • India 1
  • International 22
  • Ireland 2
  • Italy 2
  • Kazakhstan 1
  • Lithuania 1
  • Netherlands 4
  • New Zealand 1
  • Norway 19
  • Pakistan 2
  • Poland 4
  • Romania 2
  • Russia (selected smaller part) 20 
  • Serbia 1
  • Slovakia 1
  • Spain 10
  • Sweden 11
  • Switzerland 2
  • Uganda 1
  • Ukraine 2
  • United Kingdom – See Part 2 of 4: Selected UK and UK Integrity Initiative links
  • The United States 25

Content – Part 4 of 4: Atlantic Council Kremlin’s Trojan Horses projects

  • Atlantic Council Kremlin’s Trojan Horses and other projects, selected comments.

Extra: Swedish Disinformation research controversy – links

To complement our compiled list of Integrity Initiative links from around 40 countries and some Atlantic Council links, Activists for peace (In Swedish: Aktivister för fred) has chosen to publish a  an extensive compilation of links in relation to a related scandal that took place last (2017) in Sweden.

In early December 2018, Tord Björk from Activists for Peace was once more the target of a smear campaign. In a joint effort by Stockholm Free World Forum, an NGO paid by The Confederation of Swedish Enterprise to promote business interest in security affairs and Atlantic Council, the closer cooperation between environmental and peace movement and linkages to the Green Party was presented as a threat in the report Kremlin’s Trojan Horses 3.0. Tord Björk had written in an article in an environmental magazine that the referendum in Crimea in 2014 was a breach of international law but that a majority of the local population including the Ukrainians supports the outcome. The author of the report, Henrik Sundbom, a fellow at Stockholm Free World Forum, claimed that the article showed to much sympathy with the Russian Crimean narrative.

Last year a close cooperation partner to Henrik Sundbom , Martin Kragh, head of the Russia and Eurasian programme at the Swedish Institute of International Affairs and researcher at the Institute for Russian and Eurasian Studies at Uppsala University where he also is Research Director at the Uppsala Forum for Democracy, Peace, and Justice, together with the daily Expressen also started a smear campaign against Tord Björk and Ukrainabulletinen, the newsletter publicized by Activists for peace.

Activists for peace in Make 2019 a year of peace!, January 5, 2019

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Screenprint of the Institute of Statecraft’s homepage, December 2019.

Swedish responses to Integrity Initiative and Atlantic Council

So far there have been four responses to Integrity Initiative and a new Atlantic Council report in Sweden. They are published by very diverging media. The first is a letter to the editor published in a regional daily Skånska Dagbladet aligned with the Center party, the second in the weekly Internationalen supporting the opposition against Assad in Syria, the third in the blog Hans lilla gröna, run by a Green party member and the fourth Global Politics with pro-Syrian anti-imperialist Anders Romelsjö as editor. In spite of their differences they all bring up empirical material and political background rather than speculating or summarizing the leaks. There is also no direct linkage between the four media platforms making it seemingly weak – or the opposite if each one can find allies and avoid disputes with each other on this specific point.

The authors also use the specific political position Sweden has as a non-member of NATO. This makes statements as NATO’s Trojan Horses having a stronger resonance than in countries that are formally members. They are also all personally addressing experience making it easier to understand that what happens is daily life experiences for people, not something going on in computers far away. Integrity Initiative and Atlantic Council are part of governmental efforts together with private actors influencing our daily lives targeting messages and people they do not agree with openly and in secret. This makes the public debate biased and can also threaten people not to express their opinion.

I and several known and unknown Swedes were named as Kremlin’s Agents

Meurlling21December2018.png

Carl Meurling writes in Skånska Dagbladet Opinion December 21, 2018.

Carl Meurling, an investor in Russia, writes December 21, 2018 in Skånska Dagbladet Opinion, a regional daily in the Southern province Scania:

Two years ago my life changed. The Swedish Institute of International Affairs (UI) then issued a report were I and several known and unknown Swedes were labeled Kremlin Agents… Since then, I have tried to understand why we were outed. My conclusion is that the Swedish foreign administration has partly been privatized by foreign special interests. It is unacceptable and a security risk for Sweden.

Carl Meurling, December 21, 2018

Meurling also brings to light that according to the data leaks about the Integrity Initiative the person to be responsible for the Swedish part of the project would be UI’s Russia expert. He concludes: ”Thus, a tax-financed part of Sweden’s foreign administration has an employee who at the same time works for the British Ministry of Foreign Affairs to influence Swedish politics via an anonymous front organization!

intis krag

Emma Lundström writes in the weekly Internationalen December 21, 2018.

Nordic clusters are led by no less than Martin Kragh.

The journalist Emma Lundström writes December 21, 2018 more bluntly in the weekly Internationalen: ”Integrity Initiative’s Nordic clusters are led by no less than Martin Kragh… The fact that a Swedish academician serves as coordinator for the Nordic section of Integrity Initiative is quite startling. That it is Martin Kragh may not be equally surprising to those who have followed his actions for some time. He has the habit of blackening political opponents.

NATO’s Trojan Horses

HansLillaGrona16December2018.png

Hans Wåhlberg writes on his blog December 16, 2018.

The Green Blogger Hans Wåhlberg goes much further in a blog post from December 16, 2018. To him it is important to point at how different actors work closely together in cohort due to their privileged resources and access to media. He starts by looking into the report “The Kremlin’s Trojan Horses 3.0” with a chapter about Sweden entitled: “Sweden – Fertile Soil for Influence OPS?” published December 3, 2018. The chapter is written by one Henrik Sundbom, who is a “fellow” at the Swedish think tank Stockholm Free World Forum (In Swedish: FriVärld), who has close cooperation and exchange with the Atlantic Council.

The report does not only focus upon the normal suspects but also puts much emphasis on the Green party. Wåhlberg also quotes the report: “Support for the Kremlin is stronger in the independent green movement, which overlaps more with the Swedish peace movement than with the Green Party itself“.

After examining several details Wåhlberg describes the content as ”pure conspiracy theory or guilt by association, perhaps on the verge of libel in the case of names mentioned” and ends with: ”Atlantic Council says it wants to reveal to the world, and make it aware of Russian troll farms and Russian disinformation (fake news). They do this by producing their own fake news. The whole thing might be comical or in any case not worth noting if it were not for the power this think tank possesses.  He finds it appropriate to name such an organization a Trojan Horse of NATO.

Who are they? Wåhlberg asks himself when looking into the Integrity Initiative program ”according to which they will form clusters of “friendly journalists” and key influencers in different European countries to fight against Russian propaganda and false news.

He asks if ”possibly the above mentioned Sundbom is one of them?” in the Swedish cluster. Then he also asks if Martin Kragh, who in his article the previous year, raised much of what Sundbom speculates in the Atlantic Council report, also belongs to the cluster. ”Kragh’s article certainly failed as scientific work and drew strong criticism from both newspapers and colleagues, but it has not prevented Sundbom from spinning on the same material. Sundbom and Kragh have also worked together earlier and this year, among other things, published a report for The Swedish Institute of International Affairs (“Resilience Against Influence Operations in the Eastern Partnership Countries“).”

Wåhlberg concludes:

“There can be no other explanation than that it is part of a long-term campaign to discredit the peace movement with the aim of later turning the still NATO-negative Swedish public opinion. One way is then to describe NATO resistance only as a result of Kremlin’s propaganda or as something that is driven solely by the Kremlin’s agents.

Kragh admittedly recognized when he was pressured by Aftonbladet “the basic democratic right to have one’s own opinion on Swedish security policy”. But despite this, the campaign against the peace movement continues from new writers who appear in new forms. The nasty thing is that it also takes place in partially hidden forms where institutions with ties to the United States and NATO collect information about the opinions of individuals and produce material where they are discredited.

Hans Wåhlberg, December 16, 2018

Thanks God they are rightly criticizing me.

GlobalPolitics9December2018.png

Anders Romelsjö writes on the Global Politics blog December 9, 2018.

The antiimperialist blogger Anders Romelsjö:

Atlantic Council is closely associated with individuals and agencies in the deep state of the United States, having good relations with the White House. It aims to strengthen the alliance between the United States and Europe, and is an important pillar of NATO. It has been involved in all US political and military war adventures over the past 50 years and has been working for decades to cover for CIA sponsored subversive operations, killings and political manipulations in all corners of the world. It is, of course, sponsored by powerful forces such as arms manufacturers, oil companies and other major business interests, as well as receiving funding from more than 25 US-friendly governments around the world.

Now Atlantic Council has drawn attention to me and the blog! Thanks God they are rightly criticizing me. Praise would have made me quit, and consider jumping into a lake.

Anders Romelsjö, December 9, 2018

Anders Romelsjö also posted two articles on Integrity Initiative.

December 2, 2018 he wrote that Martin Kragh was ”a cluster coordinator” for Nordic Studies in the Integrity Initiative including reposting a longer critical analysis on Kragh’s article on Russian disinformation in Sweden.

December 3, 2018 he writes about Swedish names in the Integrity Initiative material based on an article published on the blog Moon of Alabama.

Activists for peace


Links:

Make 2019 a year of peace!

Activists for peace (In Swedish: Aktivister för fred) can look back to two fruitful years. Together with our cooperation partners we can now move forward on several different initiatives:

odessaupprop2019

  1. Calling for international actions on the 5th memorial day of the attack on the house of trade unions in Odessa, Ukraine, May 2, 2019.
  2. Work against repression in Russia and Ukraine. A project initiated in a co-operation between Russia and Ukraine.
    Link will be posted.
  3. Cooperate with other popular movements in the Nordic and other European countries towards and beyond the EU parliamentary elections in May. The chances are better than ever to be part of building alliances for conflict resolution and Yes to peace negotiations – no to war. More and more movements say Yes to common security – no to rearmament and strengthen peace demands by saying Yes to investments for social justice and the environment – no to austerity policies.
  4. Be part of building stronger world-wide alliances – for peace on earth and peace with the earth.

We have together with the social forum network Prague Spring 2 against right wing extremism and populism (PS2) been able to contribute to take initiatives such as the Odessa solidarity action and work to stop repression in Russia and Ukraine. With PS2 we have closely followed Thematic World Social Forum on migration in Mexico City, Mexico, European Forum in Bilbao, Spain and been part of Europe in movement in Barcelona, Spain, Assembly of Resistance in Budapest, Hungary and Nordics in movement in Malmö, Sweden.

In 2017, Activists for peace initiated Dags för fred! (In English: Time for peace!) in Stockholm, Sweden and co-arranged Another Europe is possible in Gothenburg, Sweden. This have made it possible to start cooperation with a broad range of peace, migration, environmental, solidarity, no to EU and EU-critical movements.

Skärmavbild 2018-08-04 kl. 02.37.32

This year, 2018, we have supported our two Ship to Gaza activists. Although we are not working politically on the Palestine issue – since we are mainly focused on Ukraine and criticism of how NATO advances closer to Russia in the Nordic region – we have supported Divina Levrini who went all the way from Sweden until getting hijacked by the Israeli military on international waters and Lars Drake, a Ship to Gaza veteran.

norden-trident junctureflatlibya150

During the autumn; informing and support protests against NATO military excercise in Norway where also Sweden actively participated, has been a main task.

We also have participated in Naturbrukskonferensen (In English: Conference on Land management), a yearly meeting with small farmer, environmental and other organisations to promote food sovereignty and sustainable agriculture and forestry. Here we addressed the need to strengthen civil contingencies by raising food self sufficiency, reestablish food and other contingency storages and give small farmers a say in the planning of civil contingencies.

In early December 2018, Tord Björk from Activists for Peace was once more the target of a smear campaign. In a joint effort by Stockholm Free World Forum, an NGO paid by The Confederation of Swedish Enterprise to promote business interest in security affairs and Atlantic Council, the closer cooperation between environmental and peace movement and linkages to the Green Party was presented as a threat in the report Kremlin’s Trojan Horses 3.0. Tord Björk had written in an article in an environmental magazine that the referendum in Crimea in 2014 was a breach of international law but that a majority of the local population including the Ukrainians supports the outcome. The author of the report, Henrik Sundbom, a fellow at Stockholm Free World Forum, claimed that the article showed to much sympathy with the Russian Crimean narrative.

Last year a close cooperation partner to Sundbom, Martin Kragh, head of the Russia and Eurasian programme at the Swedish Institute of International Affairs and researcher at the Institute for Russian and Eurasian Studies at Uppsala University where he also is Research Director at the Uppsala Forum for Democracy, Peace, and Justice, together with the daily Expressen also started a smear campaign against Tord Björk and Ukrainabulletinen, the newsletter publicized by Activists for peace.

In late December 2018 Activists for peace started to inform on our blog about the smear campaigns and their connections in Sweden and internationally to Integrity Initiative and Atlantic Council. Activists for peace have compiled links to some 150 comments made in 24 countries and this is complemented with open source material presented in 100 links about the scandal last year. What was once a tragedy during the Cold war seems to have returned as a farce. You can read more here (link will be posted).

More links:

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