What was originally a personal trip to visit Sevilla for my friend Rodolfo’s wedding, turned into an opportunity to engage with some of the inspirational revolutionaries in Spain. Through a couple of contacts (mainly the fantastic Olga Rodriguez) I had some talks lined up (three talks and a workshop, to be exact), and it’s a lot of fun.
This post summarizes my activities at the Iberian peninsula.
Since Rad-1 and I were already in Madrid together, then what better activity to exercise than searching for the corrupt tycoon on the loose, Hussein Salem? My friend Luis tagged along and lead the scout that left us believing that the Israeli-loving natural gas thief is no where near the Gregorio Marañón hospital in the Spanish capital (which is what all reports had indicated), and he probably never visited in the first place.
We broadcasted the adventure live via Bambuser and twitter accounts, but this episode of Aswat Al Shabaka on France24 does a spot on job of telling our story:
The talk at the Marabunta bookstore
This was the first and took place at a nice and cosy bookstore right off the authentic Lavapiés square in the heart of Madrid. There were about 40 attendees crammed into the venue, mostly from the revolutionary movement within Spain, and all very interested to get an inside scoop of what’s taking place in Egypt.
I think the talk went really well, and the feedback was positive.
Spanish national TV news
After the talk at the Marabunta, I was approached by reporter Yolando Alvarez from the Spanish Channel 1 and we ended up going back together to the bookstore to shoot this short report that was on Spanish news with heavy viewership.
It was a chance to hit at the SCAF, and I’d like to think I took good advantage of it.
The biggest talk of them all took place at an abandoned ancient tobacco factory that had been converted into a cultural center – a truly beautiful venue. I had prepared for it with an extensive Powerpoint presentation that took me about three hours to go through (plus another hour for questions).
The slides might not be self-explanatory, but I think it’s always best to have few words and some visuals, and then explain the rest (while relying heavily on videos to demonstrate).
Citizen Journalism Workshop
As followup to the talk at the Tabacalera, I gave a workshop to a group of about 20 activists on using twitter in revolutionary movements. The argument was that, while in Egypt social media played a small role, in a country like Spain it would be massive and therefore needs to be exploited.
I went through twitter (from start to finish), which cell phone is right for you, and streaming live via Bambuser or Qik. You can actually watch pretty much the entire workshop through this video:
Overall I think it’s always a good idea to network people who want to change this world and make it a better place, from different parts of the globe. When I spoke with people about the movement in Madrid and its relation to our revolution here, I always said that we are the only ones that can fight our fight. However, we are all working to end imperialism, and that requires work from our end (revolting to overthrow dictators and become independent), but also requires a lot of effort from citizens of the imperialist countries. Their job is to work towards having a real democracy (which they are far from) and form a government that truly represents them, and therefore will refrain from supporting brutal, corrupt dictators, and will not attempt to take advantage of ‘third world’ countries and their resources.
Those are my 12 piasters*, anyway. (*12 piasters is a patented Traveller Within term)