FiRE’d UP WEDNESDAYS @ The Brecht Forum

FiRE’d UP, FiRE’s summer film series is back and this summer we’re collaborating with the Brecht Forum to bring you FiRE’d UP WEDNESDAYS! Every 3rd and 4th Wednesday in July and August at 7:30pm, FiRE and the Brecht will present a different film that features the stories and struggles of Filipinas, migrants, and workers in the Philippines and abroad, in conjunction with NAFCON’s Stop Trafficking Our People Campaign. Discussions featuring guest speakers from Tue AUdre Lorde Project, Bayan USA, Anakbayan USA, the F15, and NAFCON NE will accompany the films. See schedule of films below:

WED JUL 18: Paper Dolls (Heymann, 2006), speakers from FiRE NYC
WED JUL 25: Sister Stella L. (De Leon, 1984), speakers from BAYAN USA
WED AUG 15: * Double Feature* Migrante Documentary & Modern Heroes, Modern Slaves (Boti, 1997), speakers from F 15 and Anakbayan USA
WED AUG 22: The Learning (Diaz, 2011), speakers from NAFCON NE

451 West St (btwn Bank and Bethune) A/C/E/L to 14th St; PATH to Christopher St.
All screenings begin at 7:30pm. $6-$15 donations (no one turned away for lack of funds).*

*Proceeds benefit the awesome work of The Brecht Forum and Filipinas for RIghts and Empowerment.

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NY/NJ Filipinos Launch Philippine Solidarity Week, Protests Plans of U.S. Military Build-Up in the Philippines

February 1, 2012

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Reference: Yves Nibungco, Regional Coordinator, BAYAN-USA
Contact: bayanusa.ne

NY/NJ Filipinos Launch Philippine Solidarity Week,

Protests Plans of U.S. Military Build-Up in the Philippines

New York, NY- BAYAN-USA launches Philippine Solidarity Week, a week-long series of events that raises awareness and solidarity for the continuing struggle for Filipinos to gain national liberation. As a result of the experiences during the Philippine-American War, the US government and military developed war tactics, torture, killing, occupation, and counter-insurgency operations they have used in many other countries such as in Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan. This year, Philippine Solidarity Week begins on February 4th, the 113th anniversary of the 1899 Philippine-American War with a rally in front of the Philippine Consulate in New York to protest the proposed U.S. military build-up in the Philippines.

Protest against militarization in the Philippines

Government officials from the U.S. and the Philippines recently confirmed reports by Washington Post regarding ongoing talks of increasing U.S. military operations and stationing in the Philippines. According to an unnamed Philippine military general, the talks allegedly aim to increase drills to test military readiness to protect offshore oil and natural gas platforms in the South China Sea.

This, according to Filipino activists, is a renewed assault on Philippine sovereignty and is more of a threat to Philippine national security. “This is clearly part of the U.S. government’s attempt to maintain its domination over the region’s economic sphere and contain its biggest economic rival, China”, stated BAYAN-USA Chairperson, Bernadette Ellorin. Following the demonstration outside of the Philippine Consulate, BAYAN-USA will be marching to Times Square to join the larger No War on Iran rally, a nationally coordinated event via the United National Antiwar Coalition (UNAC).

Building Solidarity for the Philippines

Philippine Solidarity Week is organized by BAYAN-USA to raise awareness regarding the struggle of Filipino people back home and to build support for it here in the U.S. It is a whole week of events starting from February 4 onwards, to signify the beginning of the Philippine American war of 1899.

Saturday, Feb. 4, 2012

Stand Against U.S. Imperialist Aggression on Iran & Military Build-up in the Philippines

Description: This Feb. 4, exactly 113 years since the Philippine-American war of 1899, BAYAN-USA calls on the community to come and join us in front of the Philippine Consulate in New York to protest President Benigno Aquino III’s continued puppetry to American governments’ hegemonic schemes. We will be holding a picket in to register our opposition against Aquino’s puppetry, against the planned military build up in the Philippines and the throughout the Asia-Pacific region. We will then be marching to merge with the bigger anti-war on Iran at Times Square.

Venue Information: Feb. 4, 12:00pm-12:30pm, Philippine Consulate General, 556 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10036

No War On Iran: National Day of Action

Description: BUILD FEB. 4 EMERGENCY DEMONSTRATION TO STOP U.S. WAR AGAINST IRAN

NO WAR! NO SANCTIONS! NO INTERVENTION! NO ASSASSINATIONS

A broad spectrum of U.S.-based anti-imperialist and anti-war organizations, including the IAC, agreed on a Jan. 17 conference call to hold coordinated protests across the country on Saturday, Feb. 4. The demands will be: “No war, no sanctions, no intervention, no assassinations against Iran.”

Sunday, Feb. 5, 2012

International Migrants Alliance: 1 Million Signatures Campaign Launch

Description: The International Migrants Alliance (IMA) invites community organizations representing immigrants from different countries to an assembly to coordinate the campaign for the collection of 1 million signatures for a just and humanitarian immigration reform promoting the integration of the undocumented into society, permitting a dignified life, access to education, healthcare, and work without being victims of exploitation, abuse and violence. The petitions will be delivered to the White House and the US Congress.

Venue Information: Feb 5, Sunday, 2:00pm at the Bayanihan Community Center, 40-21 69th St, Woodside, NY 11377; Take 69 St (7), Jackson Hts – Roosevelt Av (E, F, M, R), 74 St – Broadway (7)

Saturday, Feb. 11, 2012

Philippine Social Realities Exposure Trip 2012 Info Session (Sponsored by NYCHRP)

Description: This summer NYCHRP is going on a Philippine Social Realities Exposure Trip and we want YOU! Join us for a special information session to find out about the awesome summer that is to come!

Venue Information: SATURDAY FEBRUARY 11th, 7:00pm; doors open at 6:30pm; at the International Action Center, 55 W. 17th Street / 5th Floor, NYC

Sunday, Feb. 12, 2012

NEIGHBORHOOD WORD: “LOVE & SOLIDARITY IN QUEENS”

Pinoy Poets and Writers Celebrate Love Stories, Philippine Independence, and the Filipino-American Community in Queens

Description: FREE AND OPEN TO THE PUBLIC. Please join us for a fun-filled literary and community reading celebrating love stories and love of country. A gathering of acclaimed Pinoy poets and writers come together with Filipino community members in Queens to share fiction, poetry, hip-hop, and more. Join us for a rollicking afternoon of storytelling, camaraderie, and mouth-watering Filipino food!

Venue: Feb 12, Sunday @ 3:00pm at the Bayanihan Community Center, 40-21 69th St, Woodside, NY 11377; Take 69 St (7), Jackson Hts – Roosevelt Av (E, F, M, R), 74 St – Broadway (7)

Monday, Feb. 13, 2012

Portrait of a Freedom Fighter: A Book Launching of the Selected Writings of Jose Maria Sison Vols. 1-4

Description: The Selected Writings of Jose Maria Sison, Volumes 1-4 is a comprehensive compilation of Sison’s writings on socialism, imperialism, war and plunder, peace, terrorism, and peoples resistance spanning over 40 years, a period of time in which Sison served as fiery young leader in the Philippine revolution.

Venue Information: Monday, February 13, 7-9pm at Bluestockings Bookstore, 172 Allen Street (between Stanton and Rivington), New York, New York 10002. Trains: F/M to 2nd Avenue or J/M/Z to Essex/Delancey Sts.

Wednesday, Feb. 15, 2012

Why Occupy? Teach in @ St. Peter’s College (Social Justice Dept)

Description: St. Peter’s College Social Justice Program and Occupy Jersey City is bringing “WHY OCCUPY: Inspire, Organize, Mobilize For a Brighter Future” to Jersey City! An all-day event on the origins of the Occupy Wall Street Movement and other social movements. Discussions, exhibits, arts, culture, connections and making history. FREE and OPEN TO THE PUBLIC! Light refreshments will be provided.

Venue Information: Wednesday, February 15, 2012; 8:30am to 1:00pm; McIntyre Lounge, St. Peter’s College, 2641 John F. Kennedy Blvd, Jersey City, NJ

For more information and a full listing of events during Philippine Solidarity Week, visit http://www.philippinesolidarity.wordpress.com.

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FILIPINO WOMEN PROTEST WITH THOUSANDS IN OCCUPY WALL ST. MARCH ALONGSIDE UNIONS AND COMMUNITY GROUPS IN THE STRUGGLE AGAINST CAPITALISM AND THE PROTRACTED GLOBAL ECONOMIC DEPRESSION

News Release
October 8, 2011
References:
Irma Salvatierra Bajar, Chairperson, Filipinas for Rights and Empowerment-NYC, email: fire.nyc@gmail.com
Raquel Redondiez, Chairperson, GABRIELA-USA, email: gabrielawomen@gmail.com

FILIPINO WOMEN PROTEST WITH THOUSANDS IN OCCUPY WALL ST. MARCH ALONGSIDE UNIONS AND COMMUNITY GROUPS IN THE STRUGGLE AGAINST CAPITALISM AND THE PROTRACTED GLOBAL ECONOMIC DEPRESSION


NEW YORK, NY—On Wednesday, Filipino women of grassroots organization Filipinas for Rights and Empowerment (FiRE), under the banner of GABRIELA USA, a member organization of the newly formed International Women’s Alliance (IWA), joined a mass rally and march to Zucotti Park, the site of the 3-week-long Occupy Wall Street demonstration in New York City. The rally and march, organized by community organizations and labor unions, drew in thousands of participants and has been the largest demonstration since the launch of Occupy Wall Street. The rally commenced at Foley Square where more than fifteen public sector organizations and unions, including the United Federation of Teachers, United Auto Workers, and Transit Workers’ Union, gathered with other community and labor leaders to protest against income inequalities and poor public education in New York City.

FiRE marched with fellow BAYAN USA Northeast member organizations, Anakbayan New York, Anakbayan New Jersey, and the New York Committee for Human Rights in the Philippines, as well as with member organizations of the National Alliance for Filipino Concerns (NAFCON). This Filipino contingent joined the “New York Communities Contingent” which included People’s Justice, Nodutdol for Korean Community Development, Picture the Homeless, and FIERCE. FiRE members chanted “The banks got bailed out. We got sold out,” carrying signs reading “No to Imperialist Globalization. End U.S. Economic Intervention.”

Malou Logan of GABRIELA Australia, which is also a member organization of the International Women’s Alliance, is visiting New York City and joined the march. Of the march she stated, “I joined the march in New York as an expression of my support, and to represent the voice of the Filipino women of GABRIELA Australia and MIGRANTE Australia. Wall Street is the financial capital of the world, the epitome of corporate greed that sucks all the profits labored by the immigrants and citizens of third world countries. We as immigrants in the U.S. and in Australia are forced to leave the Philippines to look for decent jobs for our families and the women workers bear the brunt of the financial crisis.”

Monica Moorehead, an organizer with the Women’s Fightback Network, and a steering committee member of the International Women’s Alliance says, “The Occupy Wall Street actions amount to a growing mass rebellion against the global capitalist economic crisis which has already devastated the lives of millions of people, especially women, and promises to destroy the future of the youth. This radicalization of youth must continue to open up political space for the workers, who are losing their jobs, their homes, their health care and their pensions, and the most oppressed, who face political repression in the form of police brutality, cutbacks in social services, and the prison industrial complex. The Occupy Wall Street actions must be wholeheartedly supported and continue to flourish throughout the globe until ‘Occupy the World’ becomes a reality, not just a slogan.  This dynamic movement inside the U.S. has been inspired by righteous occupations in Egypt, Tunisia, Greece, Spain and Wisconsin–many of them led by women.”

Irma Bajar, Chairperson of FiRE-GABRIELA USA, stated, “Women in the U.S. and all over the world have been fighting against capitalist exploitation, patriarchy, and multiple intersecting oppressions and discrimination. The enemy is this unfair capitalist system and imperialism. People across various immigrant communities and people of color have been standing in solidarity with Occupy Wall St. because people are fed up with the injustices and unfair systems.” Bajar continues, “As a Filipino American woman, I can connect the reasons why my mother had to leave the Philippines to the Occupy Wall Street struggle because of the economic conditions and joblessness there. Women are forced out of the country and legally trafficked by the Labor Export Policy that benefits imperialist countries like the United States and big corporations like Dole and Nestle.”

The International Women’s Assembly (IWA) successfully held its First General Assembly on July 5 and 6, 2011 in Quezon City, Philippines under the theme, “Advance the Global Anti-imperialist Women’s Movement! Strengthen the International Women’s Alliance!” FiRE-GABRIELA USA urges other anti-imperialist organizations to join us in fighting against capitalism and imperialism from the level of grassroots organizing expanding to global networks. Class consciousness becomes the basis for women to fight for economic equity, political rights, freedom of association, and to oppose colonial and imperialist wars.

FiRE endorses the United National Anti-war Committee’s Sat 4/9 Rally!

Filipinos demand
US Troops out of the Philippines
US out of the Middle East
An End to the Balikatan Exercises
To Scrap Oplan Bayanihan!
To End all Human Rights Violations now!

While the major wave of anti-war organizing in US history focused mostly on Vietnam in the 60s, today’s wars take on a different shape in the international sphere.

With bombings of communities in Libya, Afghanistan, Iraq, and Palestine, uprisings have spread around the world. As the international community, we must show solidarity with the people of these nations, and ensure that they aren’t left in isolation as imperialist nations, like the US, take advantage of a transforming Middle East.

Covert wars of imperialist aggression take place in the Philippines, as well. The heightened militarization of communities is justified through the annual Balikatan Exercises, or the bombing of civilian Filipino communities in the guise of war games between the United States and the Philippine military forces. Also, under Oplan Bayanihan, the Philippines’ war on terrorism, the Balikatan exercises are used to harass, disappear, and murder teachers, activists, journalists, organizers, and other community members, including women, children, and the elderly.

For women, any time there is an increase in military presence there is also an increase in forced prostitution, trafficking, cases of violence and beatings, and rape, such as in the case of Lance Corporal Smith, when he raped a Filipina named Nicole. Sex-subsistent economies surrounding military bases become the more common practice, as opposed to creating viable industries and sustainable forms of employment which would not leave Filipina women as vulnerable to exploitation.

With increased military presence all over the world, wars of imperialist aggression urge the formation of a strong and united anti-war coalition. As GABRIELA USA and FiRE NYC, we’ve endorsed the United National Anti-war Coalition’s, or UNAC, Rally this Saturday, April 9th at Union Square in New York City. Along with 500 other local, national, and international organizations and groups we demand all

US Troops out of the Philippines
US out of the Middle East
An End to the Balikatan Exercises
To Scrap Oplan Bayanihan!
To End all Human Rights Violations now!

Hope to see you at Union Square , this Saturday, April 9th at 12noon!