Yesterday on the fourth anniversary of the Iraq war, 4 autonomous affinity groups, dozens of supporters and the Bush Administration met at the front entrance of Chevron’s world headquarters to protest Chevron profiting off of oil that fuels wars in the Middle East, catastrophic climate chaos and hazardous conditions in communities around the world.
The action included a lockdown by 14 activists putting their bodies on the line by securing themselves together with modified oil barrels and pipe-locks which prevented any traffic from entering Chevron’s front gate. Another affinity group later did the same on a second entrance. A number of groups kept energy high with entertaining street theater. This included masked members of the Reagan Home for the Criminally Insane who held a money-themed dance party, a tug of war between Chevron’s execs and the people, and a funeral precession for the last pieces of ice on the planet.
Last week, the Iraqi parliament passed laws which privatized Iraq’s oil supply (the 2nd largest in the world) and essentially legalized the corporate occupation of Iraqi oil by companies like Chevron and BP. Chevron stands to make huge profits from this new law. Chevron is also regularly criticized for creating hazardous conditions around its refineries and operations areas in communities from Richmond to the Ecuadorian Amazon. Finally, companies like Chevron make billions of dollars in profit off of a destructive product (oil), which is one of the leading causes of global warming. The United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has issued 4 reports in the past 15 years saying that human activity and the burning of fossil fuels are driving the planet toward global climate destabilization.
The war in Iraq, environmental injustice and global warming are the major crises of our time – and they are all connected by Chevron executives’ and shareholders’ drive for massive amounts of profit. Yesterday marked an escalation of resistance and demonstrated the major intersection between the anti-war and climate movements. Hopefully, it will catch on.
Check out the video–