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Indymedia Marks 15 Years of Making Media and Making Trouble The Indymedia (Independent Media Center) project started in late November of 1999, to allow participants in the anti-globalization movement to report on the protests against the WTO meeting that took place in Seattle, Washington, and to act as an alternative media source. By 2002, there were 89 local IMCs around the world spread between 31 countries (plus the West Bank) and 6 continents. By January 2006, the Indymedia network had grown to over 150 Indymedia outlets around the world.

The San Francisco Bay Area Independent Media Center, commonly known as Indybay, started in 2000. One early Indybay project was a page exposing bad landlords. Another event that helped pull in many early Indybay volunteers was the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) Conference that took place in September 2000 in San Francisco. Indybay soon broadened its coverage. Local labor struggles, forest activism in Northern California, and police brutality were quickly a focus of the early site.

Read More Indymedia and Indybay History | pdfInterview With Jeff Perlstein About Indymedia's Founding (PDF)

Previous Related Indybay Features and Stories: Indybay Celebrates Ten Year Anniversary with Media Conference and Party in Oakland | LA Indymedia 10-Year Anniversary: "Troublemaking: The Worst and Best of Indybay" | LA Indymedia Celebrates 10 years | Los Angeles Indymedia Celebrates a Decade of Media Activism | Los Angeles IMC 10th Anniversary Party!
SodaStream to Close Factory in Occupied West Bank For several years, Pro-Palestinian Boycott, Divest, and Sanction (BDS) activists in Northern California and across the globe have pressured retailers to stop selling SodaStream products in their stores. This is because Israeli beverage firm SodaStream produces many of the products it sells worldwide at a factory in the Mishor Adumim settlement in the occupied West Bank.

On October 29, amid ongoing boycott pressure from the international community, SodaStream announced that it was closing their controversial factory located in the West Bank settlement, while simultaneously reporting a 9% decline in sales.

SodaStream said that it would relocate the factory by the end of 2015. According to the firm, the plant closure would "improve the operational efficiency" of the company, listed on the New York stock exchange since 2010.

photoRead More

Previous Related Coverage: photoEarth Day: Activists Ask Zabar's to Stop Selling Israeli Occupation Profiteer SodaStream | photoSanta Cruz Activists Have Protested Regularly Since the Assault on Gaza Began| audio"Mideast Migraines" - Israeli Legal System Reflects General Injustice | photoNew Yorkers March on Broadway for Boycott, Divestment & Sanctions Against Israel | photoBrooklyn Protest Asks Target to Drop Israeli Settlement Product SodaStream | photoBlack Friday Mall Shoppers Informed of SodaStream's Connection to Occupied Palestine | photoQueers Undermining Israeli Terrorism Push Cliff's Variety Store to Boycott SodaStream | photoCaroling New Yorkers Protest Israeli Settlement-builder Leviev, as Israel Boycott Grows | calendaraudioComedian songwriter Dave Lippman back in Sac!| photoSodaStream Sponsors Bomb The Children Day at Cliff's Variety | calendarRally to End Israel’s Siege on Gaza; its Blockade, Occupation and Apartheid | photoSacramento BDS demonstrate outside of Target | photoTell Cliff's to Dump SodaStream | photoProtesting the sale of SodaStream in Sacramento | calendarSacramento Demonstration on the sidewalk in front of the Bed, Bath and Beyond
On October 28, father and daughter Mauro Oliveira (Red Sun) and Mahai'a Sol helped blockade Beale Air Force base, which is east of Sacramento. They are free now, but they face Federal charges. Mauro Oliveira writes: We want drones to end and until THAT day, my family wants it to be clear to the victims of drone strikes and to the entire world, that we believe in Peace, not war and consider drone strikes as a war crime against humanity and an act against the Creators greatest gift, the Children of the world, of which we all are.
Lawsuit Launched to Protect Pinto Abalone Conservation groups notified the National Marine Fisheries Service of their intent to sue the agency for delaying Endangered Species Act protection for the pinto abalone, an approximately six-inch snail with an iridescent inner shell that was once common in rocky, intertidal coasts from Alaska to Baja California.

The pinto abalone is in desperate need of federal protection; throughout much of its historic range, pinto abalone populations have plummeted from 80 percent to as much as 99 percent, and numbers continue to fall along the Pacific coast. “Overfishing nearly wiped out pinto abalone, and a warming and acidifying ocean now threatens to finish them off,” said Kiersten Lippmann, a biologist at the Center for Biological Diversity. “The best way to prevent extinction is immediate protection under the Endangered Species Act.”

pdfRead More | Center for Biological Diversity | See Also: Rare Abalone One Step Closer to Endangered Species Act Protection
SF Demonstration in Solidarity with Kobane and Rojava Revolution Members of the Kurdish diaspora in the Bay Area joined local anarchists on October 11 for a demonstration in solidarity with the Rojava Revolution and the Kurdish resistance in Kobane fighting off a brutal siege by ISIS. Over 50 people took over Powell and Market in San Francisco with banners and thousands of leaflets throughout the afternoon.

Kurdish fighters part of the YPG and the all women YPJ units have managed to hold their own during a month-long siege despite suffering heavy casualties and fighting with outdated weapons compared with the advanced US-made weapons used by ISIS. They are calling for the border with Turkey to be opened so that they can resupply and re arm to effectively fight off ISIS and defend their revolution. The Rojava Revolution in Northern Syria has created an autonomous multi-ethnic enclave in Northern Syria founded on anti-state, anti-patriarchal and ecological principles. It is now under attack from many sides by ISIS and the fight for the border town of Kobane has become a crucial battle.

The Turkish state has been allowing ISIS to cross it’s borders freely and has helped them resupply and rearm for numerous years. Yet it is threatened by the prospects of the Rojava Revolution expanding and is thus preventing the YPG and YPJ from doing the same. Much of Turkey’s south east is now in open insurrection against the Turkish state and in support of the Kobane resistance. Anarchists and other radicals have joined this struggle spreading it to the streets of Istanbul and beyond.

photoRead More | photoKobanê Solidarity Graffiti in West Oakland | calendarDefend the Kobanê Resistance! announcment

See Also: Turkey agrees to allow Peshmerga from Iraq into Kobane | DAF Anarchists report from Kobane (Oct 9) after 24 days of ISIS attacks | Call to Donate Medical Aid to Kobane | ISIS using captured Iraqi chemical weapons on Kobani in its desperation to take the town | ISIS: Genocidal Jihad Made in the USA; U.S. Out of Syria and Iraq! | David Graeber on Rojava Revolution - Spanish Civil War of our age? | In the Rubble of US Imperialism: Why the US isn't helping Syrian kurds | Turkish anarchists join the fight to save Kobane from ISIS; updates from Kobane
Oakland Does It Again with BDS Blockade at Port Boycott, Divest, and Sanction (BDS) activists in the San Francisco Bay Area came together again on September 27 and 28 to picket and blockade an Israeli Zim Line ship at the Port of Oakland. Organized by the Stop Zim Action Committee this time, Palestine solidarity activists dispersed across five entrances at the SSA terminal over multiple shifts, preventing longshore workers from unloading cargo for two days until the ship left port.

ILWU Local 10 longshore workers refused to work the Israeli Zim ship Shanghai during the picket. The ILWU Local 10 has been out of contract since July, which means workers will not get paid if they do not work a shift, regardless whether there is a picket line or a health and safety concern. But it also means union members do not have to defer to the port authority to determine whether or not they do cross a picket line. The ILWU has a long history of lending its union power in solidarity to outside causes.

Zim Integrated Shipping Services is Israel’s largest cargo shipping company and has become an increasingly popular target for BDS activists. In August, a Zim Line ship was effectively blocked in Oakland for four days, the longest blockade of its kind to date, kicking off similar actions up and down the West Coast. Oakland's Block the Boat coalition has called for yet another picket at the port on October 25.

photoBay Area activists again prevent unloading of Israeli ship | photoIsraeli Zim Shanghai At Standstill In Oakland By ILWU Action & Picket Line | pdfLiverpool Dockers Solidarity with ILWU Local 10 and Oakland Community Picket of ZIM Ships | pdfStop ZIM Action Committee Thanks Supporters of Zim Shanghai Pickets and ILWU Local 10 | calendar Sustained Picket of Zim Ship in Oakland - End the Siege of Gaza: 1, 2 | calendarZim Blockade Continues - All Out to the Picket Line! | Anti-Apartheid Group Announces Campaign to Block Zim Ships to Oakland

Previous Related Indybay Feature: Historic Victory Against Israeli Apartheid at the Port of Oakland
Israel's Ministry of Justice has filed an indictment against a border policeman for assaulting and injuring 15-year-old Tarek Abu Khdeir, cousin to Muhammad Abu Khdeir, who was burned to death by Israeli settlers, in July. According to reports, the officer, whose name remains under gag order, was indicted at the Jerusalem magistrate court on September 10, for using "excessive force" that could not be justified.
On September 8, 2014, Bay Area chapters of Code Pink and World Can’t Wait participated in a worldwide reading of texts by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden: “With this worldwide reading, we call on the United States Government to recognize that Edward Snowden's revelations are of essential importance for the safeguarding of democracy in the digital age.... Washington should therefore immediately lift all legal charges and complaints against Snowden, so that he can return home safely as a free man.”
Rallies and marches in solidarity with the people of Ferguson, Mo. were held across the world following the events of August 9 when Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson shot and killed 18-year-old Michael Brown in broad daylight in front of numerous witnesses. Michael was reportedly unarmed and holding his hands up while attempting to surrender when he was gunned down. Protests in the Bay Area were held in San Francisco, San Jose, and Santa Cruz.
Environmental groups filed a legal petition on August 26 to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service seeking Endangered Species Act protection for monarch butterflies, which have declined by more than 90 percent in under 20 years. During the same period it is estimated that these once-common iconic orange and black butterflies may have lost more than 165 million acres of habitat — an area about the size of Texas — including nearly a third of their summer breeding grounds.
Historic Victory Against Israeli Apartheid at the Port of Oakland In a major victory against the Israeli Zim Lines shipping company, their ship the Piraeus was forced to leave the Port of Oakland after a mass march, four days of picketing, and the refusal of ILWU Local 10 and ILWU Local 34 to work the ship despite attempts by the Oakland police department and Alameda County deputies to break up the ongoing pickets. A similar action was held in 2010 at the port, but Zim was known to have unload all of their cargo eventually. This time, many believe the Zim ship unloaded only a portion of cargo before giving up and heading back out to sea. Oakland's "Block the Boat" victory represents a historic first for the worldwide Boycott, Divest and Sanction (BDS) movement.

The action was originally scheduled to target Zim Lines on August 2, during the height of Israel's recent devastating attacks on the people of Gaza, but was rescheduled for August 16. A massive march was planned for 5am from West Oakland BART to the port to block, but Zim delayed their ship's arrival to attempt to disrupt the "Block the Boat" action. Organizers from the Arab Resource & Organizing Committee (AROC) and other anti-apartheid organizations put out last-minute word that the ship was delayed and those intending to blockade the boat were not deterred. At 3pm, two thousand or more people turned out for the march to the port. ILWU Locals refused to cross the massive picket and the ship did not dock, so no cargo was unloaded the first day.

The following day, August 17, AROC and other coalition organizations put out a call for further blockades of gates at the port. Turnout was smaller, but the contingent was strong enough that four gates were picketed while the Piraeus was moored at the port. Again, no cargo was unloaded when the ILWU refused to cross the lines. From there, autonomous activists kept up the pressure at the gates for another two days. Zim lines attempted to get tricky by leaving the port and heading out into the San Francisco Bay and past the Golden Gate bridge, to lull activists into prematurely believing their victory had been won, only to return to a different berth at the port to re-attempt to unload cargo. Activists were not dissuaded and continued to picket further shifts of dockworkers in order to prevent unloading of the Piraeus. On the evening of August 19, Stevedoring Services of America (SSA) moved workers who were already inside of gates working another ship to unload the Piraeus, and some cargo was unloaded for a few hours. Activists persevered, and maintained pickets past midnight to prevent port workers from returning from their lunch break to unload further cargo. Police and sheriff's deputies attempted to push and shove activists aside at several points, but were unsuccessful overall. Some have said all cargo with Oakland as its destination was unloaded overnight while others believe only perishables were unloaded. In the early morning hours of August 20, Zim Lines finally caved and the Piraeus left the port.

Inspired by the victory in Oakland, further "Block the Boat" actions are planned for the ports of Tacoma, Seattle and Long Beach. Tacoma's "Block the Boat" is set for this Friday, August 22.

Read More with Photos: photoILWU Rank and File Back Picket Of Zim ship Piraeus At Port Of Oakland | United States Port Actions End Business as Usual For Israel | pdfEASTWEST #3: An Anarchist Newspaper | Israeli Ship Blocked in Oakland | photoLongest Blockade of Israeli Ship in History - ZIM ship turned away from SSA in​ Oakland​! | photoMajor Victory Against Israel Apartheid Regime-Zim Lines Ship Piraeus Forced To Leave Port | photoTokyo Japan Solidarity Action With Gaza-Protest At Zim Tokyo Offices | photoIsraeli Ship Continues to be Successfully Blocked at the Port of Oakland | photoKeep The Israeli Zim Ship Stranded-Zim Ship Stuck In Port Of Oakand | calendarBlock The Boat - Join the Historic Blockade of the Israeli Apartheid Boat Day 4 | photoZim Ship Stranded In Oakland! The Labor Community Picket Against Zim Ship In The Port | photoMass March & Picket At Oakland Port To Stop Israel's Zim Line Ship Piraeus To Protest Crimes In Gaza | audioKPFA: Protest Against Zim Line Ship In The Port Of Oakland | videoBlock The Boat for Gaza at the Port of Oakland | calendarZim Ship Arrival Delayed: NOT 5am But 3pm | KPFA Pacifica to Cover Labor Community Picket At Port Of Oakland Against Zim Line | Stop The Israeli Massacre In Gaza-Full Support For Labor Community Mass Picket At Zim Line | CANCELLED: Block the Boat for Gaza! Shut Down the Israeli company ZIM Shipping @ the Port of Oakland | photoThe Oakland Palestine Solidarity Mural Unveiled on 26th Street | calendarOakland Palestine Solidarity Mural Unveiling

Related Indybay Features: The World Responds to Israel's Atrocities in Gaza: Hundreds of Palestinians, Including Whole Families, Have Been Killed in Gaza Since July 8 (2014) | Labor and Community Picket Israeli Zim Line Ship: Anti-Apartheid Picket at Oakland Docks Stops Unloading of Israeli Zim Line Ship (2010)
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Proposal for Prison Noise Demos on New Year's Eve Rev. Solidarity
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