Den Haag: Vloek 5 court case report

Today was the courtcase against the Vloek 5. The judge ordered the release of all the prisoners, and will read a verdict in two weeks. During his ‘last word’ Kwinted Keesmaat read a great text we’re publishing below.

Dear attendants

Today we are standing here before the judge because we are being suspected of using violence. According to the Public Prosecution during the eviction of free-space De Vloek cops and buses of the riot police have been smeared with paint and the police has been violated so much by this that we are being imprisoned spread over prisons in The Netherlands for already 15 days.
I have nothing to say about the accusations of squatting and violence and leave that to my lawyer.

However, I do want to say something.

For countless people free-space De Vloek in the harbor of Scheveningen was a place where they could catch a breath in a world where you are being suffocated by exploitation, racism, sexism and homophobia. A place where you can not only get away from the world-wide beast called capitalism but where people can also organize themselves against injustice in the world. A place where people could evolve and experiment in freedom. Where people can build a world that is not about money and power but about solidarity and mutual respect without bosses and politicians. A place where I could feel at home for 13 years and where I could learn. A place where we have partied, discussed, organized. Where romances started, where people died and where we buried the departed.

And now, today, one speaks of violence. But who were the people that assaulted a special place like De Vloek on the morning of September 9?

Who were the people that, armed with batons and guns, water-throwers and sharpshooters, attacked the free-space violently? Who were those people that violently rammed a bulldozer through the front of De Vloek? It was the police that evicted De Vloek using a lot of violence in order to break De Vloek down to the ground. The ones using violence are the police, the city council and the mayor that pushed through their plans with a lot of violence and gave free rein to the Big Money of project developers and to yuppiefication and capitalism. Their accomplices are the judges that shut their eyes for the matter and allowed for this eviction. It is the system that legitimizes itself with its monopoly on violence in the hand.

But this is what we agreed upon, I can hear (a hopefully small amount of) you think? That must be just like we agreed upon the racism that is rooted in politics, in the job market and in the police force. Like we agreed that no more refugee children were going to end up in a cell while in the meantime the state is building a family prison at Kamp Zeist in Soesterberg. And did we agree that cops could kill the 17 year old Rishi and get away with it? That the cops that strangled Mitch Henriquez could walk freely while so many people are raided after the uprising in the Schilderswijk? Not in my name!

Where injustice becomes law, resistance becomes a duty!

My time in detention will only make me more determined and militant. You can lock me up in a prison and reduce me to a registration number, but no prison, no police baton or gun will stop me in the struggle for a solidary world. Our passion for freedom is stronger than their prisons.

My solidarity goes out to those that fight for autonomy in Chiapas Mexico and Kurdistan!

My solidarity goes out to Said and all other prisoners that have been arrested because of the uprising in the Schilderswijk.

My solidarity goes out to my brothers and sisters of free-space ADM in Amsterdam that are being threatened by eviction.

My solidarity goes out to everyone that fights for a different society where not money is central but solidarity and mutual respect.

And finally my love goes out to my brothers and sisters that are sitting here beside me, to all people who have supported us while we were jailed. To all people of De Vloek and all those that supported De Vloek. And of course to my parents, family and friends and to my dear little son.

Dear people, this different world is going to come. De Vloek has been taken away from us but nobody can take away our ideals.

Long live anarchy!

Kwinten Keesmaat, September 23 2015