BY KATE WILSON
More than 650 young people have joined the socialist youth group Resistance since January, 465 of them students who joined from stalls at campus orientation weeks.
Resistance's national coordinator, Simon Butler, told Green Left Weekly that the large number of new members was a reflection of the role Resistance has been playing in the refugee solidarity movement. In the past few months Resistance has initiated a round of 24-hour solidarity hunger strikes and a national high-school walkout demanding the release of refugees.
Resistance has also taken major responsibility for building other refugees' rights demonstrations including the 4000-strong February 12 protest at Parliament House in Canberra and protests against the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting at Coolum on March 2.
"The exposure of the Liberals' lies about refugees, the hypocrisy of the "war on terrorism" and the lasting impact of the movement against corporate globalisation is radicalising many young people", said Butler. "More people are joining Resistance because they want to fight for a world without war, racism and injustice."
Resistance will now be prioritising building the Second Asia Pacific International Solidarity Conference in Sydney over Easter as well as continuing to protest against war and racism.
From Green Left Weekly, March 13, 2002.
Visit the Green Left Weekly home page.