After having spent about 6000-7000km on rails, a ferry and unfortunately also some roads, after having passed through 14 countries in 14 days, after having met Green friends from all over the world and especially from Czech Republic, Croatia, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria and Greece, we will be back in Brussels when this blog is posted.
Back to the Council. I am mainly helping with the accommodations list and some other logistics. This is hard to do when you do not have a face to go with the name when it comes to people and parties and that did slow things down a little. However, luckily, during the Athens council, I got some chances to see the faces that connected with the names I had been working on.
By next Council, we must have moved further in our informal communications and contact with each other. We have to participate in the visual effort, the smaller communications. We need to take and post more images, tagging them for the EGP, for the national parties, for campaigns, for policies, for votes. We need to attach messages to the images, so, when they filter into the internet, the Green voice will be far more visible.
So far today, apart from the running about and the resolutions and the updates, Joline and I managed to coax Mar Garcia Sanz onto the rooftop for a few personal images as she is now on the EGP Committee. I also managed to set the seed for her to write a blog for her term. I managed to get time to discuss torture and intimidation at a personal level with a delegate this morning. I have posted the press releases, checked the stats, updated Facebook pages, captioned images.
Blog: He has been given recognition at this Council, such as when European politicians reflected on the choice of being Green. Philippe Lamberts reflected on the Greens, and Liaquat in particular, who make their choice when their lives actually are in danger. That being a Green in Europe, by comparison was an easy choice. Being a Green in Pakistan "takes guts".
Blog: Now, I will mock the translators slightly, but anyone and everyone has to be impressed by them. They are the DNA versions of Babel fish. I have been to a few events and have watched them provide hour after hour of service. I have seen small teams do incredible hours for NGOs who are trying to cut costs. They ask for very little. Water and a clear view of the proceedings. I think nothing infuriates them more than standing in front of their cubicles.
Blog: The Council is here because the European Greens wanted to make a blatant, open, clear act of support to the Greek people. We are here discussing the future of Europe, our social and economic future. We are discussing European partnerships and possibilities. We are here because we believe Greece - along with the other severely weakened and threatened European states - is part of Europe. Wanted. Needed. We are building our vision for the future of Europe in full display to the Greek people.
The question is, should I join the demonstration or not? The Greek people are protesting for u,s too. For the populations in Europe. They are only the first who are demanded such a tremendous effort. And today 100 000 protestators of angry people took to the streets of Athens as Greek Parliament is about to narrowly vote a new austerity package.
It was always a possibility, even before we left Brussels. Afterall, the general strike had been declared, the dates set (in stone). There would be massive disruption throughout Greece on the very days we would cross over the border and then take the final leg to the sat of democracy.
Is a that what you call a change in timetables, involving an early arrival?
After a wonderful day in Sofia with our friends from Zelenite, we had to take the decision on how to deal with the general strike that was announced for Greece on 6th and 7th.