In the Midwest, a movement is growing to attack a major infrastructure project, Interstate 69. The “NAFTA superhighway”, which if built would run from Canada to Mexico, is supposed to begin construction as early as this coming spring. Anarchists in Indiana are working with local farmers who are losing their land and city-dwellers who oppose the highway. Many locals have joined up in a lawsuit, as Earth First! activists continue a direct action campaign against the Indiana Department of Transportation and various companies involved. Action against the highway is ongoing and coming from many different communities, including a range of tactics.
Roadblock Earth First! is calling for folks to come to southwestern Indiana this April, or sooner. Engineering firms are bidding for their stake in the project in April, and we are expecting clearing work to begin shortly after. Bring an affinity group and gear if you can.
I-69 is intended to facilitate increased trade between Canada, the United States, and Mexico. It has already been built from Ontario to Indianapolis, via the Port Huron border crossing in Michigan. National planners hope to see the highway extended through southwest Indiana, then into Kentucky, Tennessee, Mississippi, Arkansas, Louisiana, and Texas, where it will connect with the highways of the Plan Puebla Panama (PPP) in Mexico. Constructing I-69 comes at an enormous cost — in money, farms paved over, and greenhouse gases added to the atmosphere by thousands of trucks moving ever more global trade.
Here are some recent actions claimed by Roadblock Earth First!
July 9th – In protest of the ongoing evictions of southern Indiana farmers, two separate groups of “Hayduke’s Moving Crew” simultaneously barged into I-69 planning offices in Oakland City, Indiana and Petersberg, Indiana. They announced that the office was being evicted, and proceeded to take desks, computers, files, maps, etc. and dump them on the side walk outside. Eviction notices were taped on the windows and both groups got away with no arrests. At the same time a street march and several banner drops happened in downtown Bloomington, which left the city covered with chalk and paint graffiti against the highway. These happened as part of the post Earth First! Rendezvous day of action.
August 21st – A public I-69 informational meeting in Bloomington was “hijacked” and shut down by an eclectic mix of young and old, anarchists and liberals. As the presentation started, audience members began shouting and holding banners, the projector was unplugged and someone took the microphone and began educating the audience of mostly business execs and city officials about why the highway isn’t wanted. Eventually the original presenters called the meeting off and told their cohorts to leave. Later they announced that there would not be any more public meetings about I-69 in the city of Bloomington.
September 14-16th – Evansville, Indiana hosted an anti- I-69 strategy consulta. People from various towns in the midwest and some folks from the east coast attended a weekend of planning for next spring and summer. The consulta also included a tour of the first two miles of the proposed I-69 route in Indiana, allowing dozens of new people to get to know the land that will be lost if we don’t win. The Evansville newspaper reported a major I-69 engineering firm was on “high alert” and local police patrols were increased in anticipation of the influx of eco-anarchists to the region.
Write to Roadblock Earth First! or check our website for updates and more info. We won’t let them clear, and we certainly won’t let them pave. We will never let them build this road!