The article “The paradigm of Xylella fastidiosa” published on the last issue, number 7, of Fragua Social (p.14-15) resulted in the initiative, on the side of several unions placed in regions very badly hit by the so called “Xylella emergency”, of contacting the comrades in the Apulia region (in Italy). The aim was to organise a series of conferences with the main purpose to shed light on the dark aspects of the current management of this emergency, based on sharing information and experiences.
The initiative was welcomed in the area and the interest and participation of the attendees endorse the efforts of our Union in the dissemination and practice of the anarcho-syndicalist principles with regards problems in rural environment. The conference collected testimonies from Benissa, Alcoi and Albacete, particularly the realities of farmers and people who are sensitive to a comprehensive defence of the territory where they live. It has also been relevant as a first contact, and confirmed the need for a popular and independent co-ordination that embraces both popular and international response by means of several possible actions of solidarity and study.
Particularly in the Puglia Region, people were already working in an independent multidisciplinary scientific committee in order to support, backed by science, our conclusive claims: "there is a criminal strategy against people and the territory behind the fraud of the Xylella fastidiosa emergency". It has been argued that this bacteria is just an instrument, poorly justified, for the consolidation of consumer economies and capitalist mass production to the detriment of the historical culture of the territories and their possibilities for economic autonomy around agricultural production. Tourism and the capitalist devastation of mass production and consumption are against our lands cultural and environmental uses and habits.
All the above finds support in several works of documentation and denounce such as the book "Xylella Report" of the Italian researcher Marilù Mastrogiovanni or the contributions of the German journalist Petra Resky, which were read in the talks, as well as in several texts from the different scientists organised in the independent multidisciplinary scientific committee in Italy.
Amongst all the issues shared and discussed in the conference, it appeared of special relevance the verification of the apparent selective ability of this bacteria in choosing targets, coincidentally favouring the interests that the territorial management policies try to impose on each particular territory. In the case of the Apulia, the Xylella directed by remote control, focuses on olive trees, while in the Iberian Levante it mostly affects to almond trees.
The reason is simple, in Italy they plan to change the production model into an intensive one, with low quality and dependent on the multinationals in the sector, as well as allowing the felling of monumental secular trees for the construction of various capitalist strategical infrastructures such as a variety of pipelines that must pass through the Salento. Whilst in Spain, where the acknowledgement of emergency is more recent, they just want to justify the expenditure of public money in favour of private interests within the tourist sector, leaving free zones of agricultural use in the hands of real-estate speculators. A huge flow of money and resources to control and destroy the primary rural sector are filling many other grateful pockets in universities, municipalities and regional companies such as Vaersa or national ones, as Tragsa, among others.
They have turned the Xylella fastidiosa and their possible vectors of infection into another Trojan horse serving the predatory schemes of capitalism and its partner, the state. As an example, in Italy and on the last 7th February, an agreement was made in the Senate, between the Movimento 5 stelle (left wing of the sort “Podemos”) and the Lega Nord (ultra right wing, a sort of “Vox”), to enact a law that will bring imprisonment for up to 5 years to any farmer who resists to the cutting out of secular olive trees.
And to summarise, the conclusion was unanimous: only a popular movement, independent of parties and business interests, has been able to and can face the attacks of the capital-state tandem. In our unions of the CNT-AIT, we have the will to do it from our agriculture sections, in collaboration with scientists committed to put real science to the service of the freedom and emancipation of the human beings and life.
Section of Land Workers