Why internationalism and what do we understand by it?
For us, an internationalist understanding includes the conviction that global capitalism can only be overcome through worldwide revolutions. We see our role in Germany primarily as a learning and supporting one, especially in today’s times, when we see the potential for fundamental change in post-colonial regions much higher than in Western ones. This includes exposing and thereby making vulnerable the role of the German state, German companies and Western state alliances in international conflicts.
If we want to fight global structures of oppression, we must understand their origins. Just as colonial exploitation by European states laid the foundation for the capitalist system as it is today in the first place, it can only continue to exist through the ongoing perpetuation of racism.
Thus, if we understand international perspectives as perspectives of actual utopia, this is inseparably linked to the struggle against racism as a system, against imperialism and (nation-state) borders, as well as for decolonization, equal rights for all, and freedom of movement.
What topics are we working on?
At the moment we are working on two main issues that are interrelated: International struggles and local struggles on anti-racism and the right to stay (the right for asylum).
On the one hand we want to support emancipatory struggles and revolutions worldwide and learn from them, we want to exchange with movements that organize themselves in different places against local regimes, the capitalist and neocolonial system. This includes understanding international mechanisms of exploitation, which mostly have a colonial continuity, and especially exposing and fighting against the role of the German and other European states with their imperialist interests.
On the other hand, these connections cannot be detached from the racist European migration policy and the responsibility of many Western states for creating causes of flight. As a central component of internationalist work we therefore understand the support of struggles against the European/German deportation industry and against the effects of the racist system in Berlin and Germany.
We also see antimilitarism and the German arms industry as a potential thematic field for this section of „Perspektive Selbstverwaltung“ (perspective self-management). At the moment, due to our limited capacity, we are not able yet to confront these topics head on, but we hope this changes if people join us who are interested in working related to these or other struggles.
Since there can often be thematic overlaps with other sections, especially in the support of struggles worldwide, we collaborate and cooperate with other groups of „Perspektive Selbstverwaltung“.
What are the principles of our work?
Continuous solidarity is important to us. That means we don’t just want to support movements selectively when they are in the media spotlight, but to build and maintain relationships and respond to the needs of those we support. Ideally, long-term networks of mutual support should grow from this.
As a section where a majority of the members are white with a German background, we regularly try to reflect on our positioning, what role we take as supporters and are vigilant not to fall into Eurocentric patterns.
If we want to express ourselves on a specific issue/region or actively support movements, the prerequisite is that we have informed ourselves deeply.
What do we do concretely?
When we talk about supporting social movements and initiatives internationally and/or with a focus on anti-racism, this can be through one of the following ways:
- Practical support, e.g. by taking over reproductive or other (background) tasks at events or actions (cooking, organizing infrastructure, being „Ordner*innen* at demos, driving, etc.).
- Providing a stage and strengthening media attention, e.g. by organizing events and inviting speakers from the respective movements, through press and translation work (interviews, articles) and on social media.
- Financially, e.g. through fundraising and applications for funds, but also by sharing knowledge about access to financial resources (Asta funds, authorities, foundations)
- Support of individuals in our social surroundings (since we are not experts and there are many professional offers especially in Berlin, we currently do not see ourselves able to provide support beyond that)
In addition to this support work, we want to proactively deal with the issues we work on. To find a common ground we start with underlying issues like racism, colonialism, imperialism, global capital distribution, flight and migration. The goal here is to gain a deeper understanding of the interconnection between these structures of oppression and to find common analyses and positions on some of these questions, which will also flow into our self-understanding as a section on the one hand and into the program section „Antiracism and Decolonization“ on the other. Concretely, we want to start reading texts together in September and use the second part of our plenaries to discuss them.
Finally, we also see supra-regional and international networking as one of our responsibilities, since it arises naturally from our work. Here, too, the principle applies: it is better to establish stable and reliable connections, even if there are fewer of them, than many non-binding ones.
We meet every two weeks. Our plenarys are held in English or German, depending on who is present. Feel free to contact us if you are interested in participating!
Contact: email@example.com | Reference: Internationalism