1. International Day for Reparations Related to Colonialism / Journée internationale pour les réparations liées à la Colonisation

On October 12, 1492 Christopher Columbus arrived in the “New World”. The date marks the beginning of conquest and exploitation. A coalition of organizations and initiatives worldwide is calling for the first “International Day for Reparations Related to Colonialism” in 2013. glokal has signed the appeal. Here is a short excerpt from it:

Colonization is a global phenomenon: there is hardly a country in the world that has not been colonized, a colonizer, or both, such as the United States. Colonization is one of the phenomena that has most disrupted humanity. It has left a deep and lasting impression on all continents and the consequences of this are

  • demographic: there are millions of people who have been exterminated, deported, or sold into forced labor.
  • political: in Africa, America, Asia, and Oceania, cities, kingdoms and empires have disappeared. Traditional communities were gradually disrupted and subjected to European domination.
  • economic: the entire economic fabric of societies was brutally dismantled. Crops were looted and famines became more frequent. Dispossessed of their own wealth, those who were colonized were permanently immersed in a state of chronic poverty.
  • cultural: colonization destroyed many civilizations, languages, cultures and religions. Those who were colonized often lost their roots and their identity. The social image of the non-European was degraded and this has facilitated the development of racist theories, which has fuelled violence and discrimination of all kinds.
  • ecological: the introduction of technologies in the service of profit and productivity focused visions caused the ransacking of millions of hectares of forests, the wasting of natural resources, the pollution of whole regions and it has made the environment fragile and deteriorated public health. It has also helped to disrupt ecosystems and, of course, the most devastating effect of colonization from an ecological aspect is the increase of global warming.