Wülfrath (Germany): sabotage of the railway tracks of the lime quarry

Wülfrath : sabotage of the railway tracks of the lime quarry

Translated from German via de.indymedia, August 8, 2022 (excerpt)

On the night of August 3 to 4, 2022, we, an offensive group, sabotaged the railroad tracks of the company Lhoist Germany Rheinkalk GmbH near Wülfrath by twisting the rails and thus making them unusable, with various methods. In doing so, we took care that no uninvolved persons were affected. We consciously opted for offensive means because we believe that these forms of action must regain a large place in the climate justice movement.

Complementary to existing forms of action, they offer us a possibility to break out of the stagnant political situation and to inflict damage to both the companies and the system with additional steps. With the sabotage of the rails, we have effectively cut off Europe’s largest limestone quarry from its most important goods transport routes. The two main players in the lime production site are the billion-dollar groups RWE and Thyssenkrupp.

Why this particular target?

The fossil fuel company RWE operates several brown coal mines in the Rhineland (including Europe’s largest open-cast mine in Hambach). However, this is not enough: despite the long overdue decision to get out of coal, it is about to expropriate the village of Lützerath near the Garzweiler 2 mine, in order to expand it even further. For the operation of open-pit mines and power plants huge quantities of limestone are needed. The lime is used for the preparation processes and is required by law, without it the production must be stopped.

Politically, RWE has been lobbying for decades against an effective climate policy. The company has even been involved in the formulation of energy laws, which are of course in the interests of its own profits. Thus, just after his retirement from office, during which he was particularly known for his pro-coal policy, the former Federal Minister of Economics and Labour, Wolfgang Clement, re-emerged on the RWE board of directors.

Since the company has been struggling to justify itself in the wake of the climate crisis debate, it has been trying since around 2011 to polish its image and present itself as a climate savior. Given the history of RWE’s lobbying work, this seems particularly cynical.

RWE is to be richly remunerated for the now inevitable transition to renewable energies: 2.6 billion euros in compensation payments are envisaged. The example of the Netherlands shows what is really going on with RWE’s claimed efforts for more climate protection when it is deprived of these “compensation payments”: a year ago, RWE filed a complaint against the planned phase-out of coal in that country, which was made possible by the agreement of the energy charter.

All this has not gone unnoticed by the growing climate justice movement: since 2015 Ende Gelände has been regularly blocking RWE’s infrastructure, and in the threatened villages resistance is growing, Lützerath is fully occupied and preparing to prevent destruction. FFF and various NGOs are also increasingly pointing the finger at RWE and the role it plays.

The second beneficiary of the lime deliveries we sabotaged, Thyssenkrupp, is receiving less headwinds. However, the company’s dirty tricks are no less damaging: On the one hand, there is the almost obligatory National Socialist past of German companies, which has been worked on in a dubious manner. It went hand in hand with a strengthening of economic power, forced labor and direct financial support of the NSDAP. In addition, the company was noted for its involvement in human rights abuses such as the forced displacement of numerous families in Mozambique. On top of that, Thyssenkrupp is one of the largest (and often forgotten) arms producers. Like Rheinmetall & Co, Thyssenkrupp makes massive amounts of money on wars and profits from the special budget for armaments by being entrusted with the production of submarines and other military equipment for the Federal Army and NATO, among other things, with its subsidiary “Thyssenkrupp Marine Systems”. The Erdogan regime, which is currently attacking Kurdistan, is also a good customer of this subsidiary.

Why do we choose offensive means?

Crises and wars are not accidents in capitalism. They are logical consequences of its laws and are part of its “normal functioning”. The only possible way out of this infernal circle is therefore the destruction and thus the overcoming of this economic and social system.

The urgent and existential danger for all of us, of the rapidly progressing climate crisis and of global rearmament, of war in the long term as in Yemen, Kurdistan and Ukraine – with the ever more realistic potential of escalation to a world war or even atomic war – is perceptible for all of us. The additional realization that the powerful cannot and will not solve these problems means that we must take action here and now.

… On the other hand, it is a matter of sabotaging the destruction of our world in order to keep even the material conditions for this other society. But in order that actions like ours do not remain a drop on an ever burning stone, we need a completely different dimension and intensification.

Our offensive action must be antagonistic to the existing order and try to break the logic in force in order not to be contained by it.

We refer to the text that appeared in mid-June and that has been circulating in parts of the movement, advocating more offensive actions to come. We are a group that is in the process of acquiring first experiences in offensive forms of action and definitely do not have expert knowledge. This action was for us a first attempt, also with the aim to encourage others to take steps in this direction.

We also refer with joy to the successful example of the comrades in Lausitz, who sabotaged the overhead lines of the LEAG company with a hook.

… Whether in small group actions that are getting bigger and bigger or in mass actions, like for example this week’s Ende Gelände in Hamburg: let’s get out of our established and often harmless forms of protest and dare to do new or forgotten things to oppose the destruction! Let’s always criticize the means we use and exchange with each other! In times of war, crisis and destruction, let us do what is right and necessary!

[This communique also contained numerous internet links, which we have not reproduced: see the original in German].

via: sansnom translated by Act for freedom now!