Olympic Torch Promo Tour Protested in Waterloo, Ont

Olympic Torch Promo Tour Protested in Waterloo, Ont

WATERLOO—Friday April 3, AW@L activists and members of the Climate Change Containment Unit (CCCU) descended on Coca-Cola’s promotional event for the 2010 Olympic Torch Relay.

The torch relay is currently scheduled to come through Ontario in December 2009. The 2010 Olympics are occurring on stolen native land and causing dramatic environmental destruction and unconscionable gentrification and criminalization of the poor in the city of Vancouver.

The Coke van, which is travelling across the province, was in Kitchener yesterday and Waterloo today, attempting to spread hype for the Games.

However, today AW@L crashed their party—not once, but twice—sending action teams to both of the van’s scheduled stops.

For the first stop, at a local Sobey’s, AW@L dispatched the CCCU who,
dressed in ‘haz-mat’ suits and armed with large fire-extinguishers, warned the Coca-cola Olympic Torch Relay team that if they were to attempt to light the flame while inside Waterloo or Kitchener, it would be promptly extinguished. “The Olympic torch must be seen as a symbol for the massive scale of the ecological destruction being caused in the building and preparation for the 2010 Games. It is all of our responsibility to refuse to participate in the brazen display of celebration for the environmentally and socially destructive behaviour that the Olympics represent,” said a member of the CCCU.

AW@L activists were also on hand with a large banner that displayed the
no2010 Thunderbird and the message: “No Olympics on Stolen Native Land.”

One of the activists emphasized that the Olympics are an “embodiment
of neoliberal colonialism, and that the absurd overspending on the Olympic security operation is a sign of creeping fascism and militarism in our police forces and the government’s response to land protection and the struggles of marginalized and oppressed populations.”

At the second stop, at a local Galaxy cinema, members of AW@L handed out
flyers and argued with management and police before vacating the premises. AW@L activists have said that the Torch Relay, if it is to pass through Kitchener-Waterloo, will be met with resistance, as it will across the province and the country.

AW@L is a direct action group based out of Kitchener-Waterloo that works
on anti-war, ecological defence, and indigenous solidarity campaigns.

AW@L’s Climate Change Containment Unit has taken up the task of shutting
down some of those corporations that are most guilty of propagating climate change and environmental destruction. AW@L has endorsed the Olympic Resistance Network’s Statement on Solidarity and Unity. AW@L can be found online at peaceculture.org and reached by email at antiwar@peaceculture.org.

dan kellar
Philosophical Environmentalist
Eternally Concerned Citizen