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war. causes. forced migration

at the Combat Training Center (GÜZ) Altmark
from 25th till 31st July

anti-militarist Camp and Actions at the CTC (GÜZ)

Hundreds of thousands of people seek refuge in Europe from poverty and misery, from war and torture. No one here can turn a blind eye to the disastrous consequences of a capitalist world economy. We are part of it. Attacks also in the highly developed industrialized countries make clear that the horrors exported by the mighty global North into the entire world, are now returning – also noticeable for us – back to us. The laboriously created facade of an ideal world begins to crumble.

It is necessary to speak about the role of Western countries in the staging of the war and to develop alternatives to a military escalation. Instead, terrorist attacks are exploited for new warmongering, the dismantling of democratic rights, the strengthening of racist politics and the sealing off of Europe from migrants.

Germany also participates in the international anti-IS alliance. But the proclaimed „war on IS“ only prepares the ground for even more terror, death and suffering. Even more people are forced to risk the arduous and dangerous journey to Europe, in order to survive. The more important it is right now, to reveal the link between militarization, war, terror and forced migration and to render their causes visible.

Together with many we want to lay open, disturb and block the apparent normality of the warlike conditions: We want to be noticeable stones in the gear!

  • We call for resolute opposition to the state-organized killing and destruction.
  • For global social rights and a good life for all!

Warlike Conditions

Worldwide millions of people are fleeing war, poverty and hopelessness – for a long time now. On their way here thousands have drowned in the Mediterranean. But only now – with the images of thousands of people making their way on foot to Europe, hastily raised barbed wire and crowded emergency accommodation facilities- we get an idea of how much the world has been thrown out of joint.

Attacks like in Paris make the murderous reality perceptible for us. And yet they already represent bitter normality for a majority of the world’s population, but so far just worth a side note. The many dead by the augmenting wars of the industrialized countries are – as happened in Kunduz – dismissed as collateral damage. But now that the organized killing approaches us, the federal German government decides to participate in the „war on IS“.

We are living in war conditions. The unleashing of capitalism has turned the world once again into a highly unsafe place. After the collapse of the Soviet Union, it is about a new division of the world in order to access and acquire the last raw materials and energy resources, the exploitation of new markets and cheaper production conditions worldwide.

With political and economic power, and increasingly by military means, the „security of supply“ – and that is, in plain language: the endless exploitation of humans and nature and the free flow of goods, but not: a good supply to the people – is being secured globally. In times of permanent crises it is about the maintenance of the dominant world economic system in the interest of those, who benefit from it the most.

From the internal logic of capitalism arises inevitably a compulsion to growth and profit. Economic concerns in this sense always override the interests of those affected. Through this economic model, to an increasing extent, the livelihoods of millions of people here and worldwide are being destroyed.

Climate change, poverty and migration: they are intimately interwoven with the system that „our wealth“ is based on. Crises and wars are its inevitable consequences. Life in warlike conditions drives people from their homes – and also into the arms of extremists: a vicious circle.

Combating the effects of destructive politics with war?

Civil society groups in Syria are calling for urgently needed peace negotiations. Their message is: Stay away us with your bombs. We have enough of it! They do not want military intervention in the conflict, but they deem a political solution for the long ignored tragedy in their country necessary. Instead, the federal German government decided within a few days, to participate in the „war on IS“. As a necessary „peace-making“ intervention, war is transfigured into a „humanitarian“ mission.

The consequences of the politics of the capitalist industrialized countries are combated with military foreclosure and new wars – although history has shown that the fight against „terrorism“ can not be won by military means. You cannot bomb for peace and freedom.

Germany’s new superpower ambitions in the global power game

Germany has long since abandoned the previously propagated policy of restraint and developed its own ability to wage war. In alliance with NATO, but also as a powerful state within the EU, the Federal Republic of Germany is working on its own shaping power.

The Bundeswehr (the German military) – long transformed from a defense to an intervention force – is already active in a whole series of military deployments around the world. As part of the newly installed NATO “Spearhead Force” (Very High Readiness Joint Task Force (VJTF)), it will play a central role in NATO wars. It assumes “international leadership responsibility „, as War Minister von der Leyen put it. In the global competition with other major and emerging powers, the NATO safeguards under the leadership of the United States its economic and political interests by military means.

Although the German government is not involved in every war or transfigures its wars as peace-making mission: As a matter of fact Germany sells in an uninhibited and aggressive manner weapons throughout the world, even in areas of tension. Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates are among the main recipients of German arms. Germany is the world’s third largest exporter of weapons and a military hub for the wars of aggression of NATO. Via the military base Ramstein the US Army handles its logistics in war zones and directs the use of killer drones, by which thousands of people have been already killed worldwide. Germany wages and promotes war.

Another world is possible!

The „welcome culture“, which is applied by large parts of the civilian population in support of people driven from their homes, sends a clear sign against the right-wing arsonists: No to racism and discrimination! Worldwide freedom of movement, as we reclaim for us, must also apply to people in the global South.

The spontaneously formed support makes the possibility of another world appear: a world of solidarity and cooperation. How can it be turned into an emancipatory movement persistently committed to universal human rights and a social infrastructure that enables all people to live a good life? In every corner in the world!

The Government policy makes the opposite happen. Even the dedicated parts of society have almost not noticed it: while the large parts of society was collectively supporting people fleeing their countries, the German government quickly pushed through a violent curtailment of the right to asylum in no time and even quite openly declared it as such. The government thus showed its true face behind its so acclaimed German „welcoming culture“ and adds fuel to the fire of incitement against refugees by Pegida and other racist groups.

In the context of this development of society, we deem it important to take a clear stance against warlike conditions, which stand behind war, terror, displacement and forced migration; to fight them together and to stick up for a world in which no one is driven from his / her home because of destroyed livelihoods and war. For a world without borders, in which life is worth living – everywhere!

War starts here – our resistance too!

We want to oppose the spreading militarist culture. Not only in the minds of people, but also in a very practical sense. Disarmament is handmade. We can not trust in the political process but we rather have to take matters into our own hands. Antimilitarist action is needed everywhere and at all times. We have already identified a place over the last years, which has been a focal point for anti- militarist actions and it will carry on its role as such due to its important function for the preparation of war and urban combat.

The Combat Training Centre (CTC) in the Altmark is Europe’s most modern military training ground and thus plays a crucial role in the wars of the NATO countries. On the 230 square-kilometer military terrain war is being trained and prepared with high-tech and laser simulated weapons systems. Here, German soldiers prepare their missions abroad in different regions worldwide. The operator „Rheinmetall Service Center Altmark“ rents the grounds to the German Army and the armies of other NATO member states, provides the technology and logistics services and generates the groundwork for military analyzes. Here, war is being practiced, tried out, and prepared.

Also armed forces of the United Arab Emirates were acquainted with modern warfare exercise techniques in the CTC. Inspired by the example of the training area in the Altmark, the Emirates ordered a full exercise center worth 70 million euros with Rheinmetall Defence in 2010. A logic of war: destabilization and wars in crisis areas by fueling arms sales and training of „warriors“ – and then the consequences are fought with war!

Here at the CTC to combines many facets of war as well as of the militarization of interior and exterior spaces. The construction site of the giant war exercise town „Schnöggersburg“, which is supposed to be used for the testing of urban counterinsurgency, has advanced significantly over the last years. Thereby, the facility assumes an increasingly important role for the NATO and future wars. With the nearby airport of Leipzig, used for war and deportation of refugees and migrants, the connection to war all over the world is completed. We want to render this central location of war preparations visible and interfere and block with our different actions the „business as usual“ of the well-oiled war machine.

Become part of the camp!

For several years now, the war-starts-here in Camp Potzehne, near the Combat Training Center (CTC), brought together many different people. Being together, discussing and actively doing something had an effect on both the participants of the camp as well as the region. And it was fun.

As varied as the currents in emancipatory movements are, as varied are the perspectives of the individual on war and military. Considering this diversity, we want to further develop the common ground in our resistance, enhance the increasing resistance on the spot as well as discuss and respect our differences. During this (now fifth!) Camp we want to direct our attention to the causes and consequences of military relations and also look a little beyond our backyard. We hope many people – who consider flight and migration a concern – to come discuss and engage practically with us. The camp will be a place for it. We want a discussion on an equal footing with all who are driven by the same thing: the dislike of the destructive conditions worldwide. Since October regular “anti-militarist counsel” have taken place – nationwide public meetings for networking, exchange and the practical preparation of the Camp 2016.

  • Camp at the Combat Training Center Altmark
  • Get active, get prepared!
  • See you at the latest at the camp!
  • Antimilitarist camping!
  • War starts here – Our resistance, too!

War starts here – our resistance, too!
anti-militarist camp and actions
at the battle Combat Training Center (GÜZ) Altmark
in 39 638 Potzehne / Germany
from 25th till 31st July

The warstartsherecamp 2016 is a joint effort of all the camp participants It is supported by the anti-militarist counsel