Thanks to the movement set in motion in recent years by young people all over the world through mobilizations such as Fridays for Future or ExtinctionRebellion, all communities are starting to become aware of the seriousness of the environmental emergency in which we find ourselves. Life on Earth as we know it today is in danger. If we don’t react rapidly, climate change and the loss of biodiversity caused by human activities can lead us to a social and ecological collapse lethal for our species and for many others.
The measures that are being taken by the majority of states, governments and economic powers are little more than bandaids incapable of reversing the current global trends. We need a much more profound change. Indigenous organizations, ecological groups and women’s networks all over the world contribute ideas and examples for this change. It is these collectives that are defending our security. For examples, one can consult the thousands of cases collected in the Global Atlas of Environmental Justice,which would not be available without the work they have done.
Women in Black want to join the current tides (groups?) that work to put life at the center. We recognize that we are interdependent beings both ecologically and socially and for that reason we want a society capable of caring for itself and its surroundings.
In the defense of life and care giving, we find it absurd to continue dedicating resources and efforts to activities that are destructive, violent and polluting. In view of that, we do not understand the need to continue nurturing wars, armies and other structures of the military industrial complex. A just and sustainable distribution of resources is the best way to prevent warlike conflicts, as the motive behind the majority of wars includes the exploitation of some natural resource. We remember that not only do armies consume enormous quantities of fossil fuels, but the majority of military interventions in recent decades had as their main objective to ensure the supply and transportation of these fuels, there being numerous examples of agreements between countries that produce weapons (USA, China, United Kingdom, France, Holland) and oil producing countries (Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Sudan, Venezuela, United Arab Emirates, Nigeria).
The impacts of wars and other military interventions are incalculable and usually have long-lasting effects. As a specific example, we remember that the chemical weapon made in Spain and used in the Rif (territory in the north of Morocco that was a colony of Spain. The event referred to took place a century ago, in 1921) continues to cause cancer in the civilianpopulation.
Women in Black Against War define militarism as a plague for humanity and for the entire planet. To rid ourselves of this plague:
- We support direct nonviolent actions that help redress this situation, demanding binding mechanisms to curb greenhouse gas emissions and other kinds of contamination, destruction of habitats and loss of biodiversity.
- We demand that all governments guarantee the security and health of the people and the Planet and that they discontinue wasting resources in promoting militarism.
- We invite civil society to join the alternatives for responsible consumption that promote more just and ecological relationships (consumer groups, ethical banking, energy cooperatives, community gardens, etc.).
- We honor the memory of women defenders of the environment assassinated throughout history and demand protection for those who continue with this struggle.
WE DEFEND LIFE VERSUS ECONOMIC AND MILITARY INTERESTS
“There are no military strategies that focus on the fundamental causes of climate change […] because the main objective of armies is to guarantee the present world order, however unjust or unsustainable it might be.”
Mark Akkerman in The End of Greenwashing: climate change and commerce in weapons (2016)
Translation: Trisha Novak, USA