In Hong Kong, the police administration sent out a media spokesman to say law and order were “close to total breakdown”. That was after two days of intensified clashes with demonstrators inflamed by the first deaths on their side, one man who fell from a building, one shot at point-blank range. A police officer was set on fire and 30 people were injured in the latest stand-offs. Now-routine news coverage shows Hong Kong as a battlefield.
In Chile, workers across most of the country’s industries – miners, petroleum and building workers, public transport employees, wharfies, public servants, teachers, airport staff, agricultural workers – went on strike to support crowds confronting the government in cities up and down the long coastline.
- Bolivia, Ecuador, Peru and Venezuela were Tuesday’s news – 12 November – and saw the exit of another head of state: ‘Bolivia faced its worst unrest in decades amid a political vacuum Tuesday… Evo Morales, who transformed the Andean nation as its first indigenous president, fled the country following weeks of violent protests… as his supporters and foes fought on the streets of the capital,’ said this despatch from Time.
- Iran, getting economic stress from American sanctions, saw the first eruptions, suppressed like recurrent protests before them by the Islamist regime.
- Iraq, the oil-rich State impoverished and smashed by war, has seen the most violent clashes, in Baghdad and at Basra in the South. Estimates of the dead run to more than 300.
- Lebanon, taking on the burden of waves of refugees from Syria, now has an uprising against domination by corrupt political organisations in the government. Those include the armed Shiite Islamist movement, depleted in respect and strength by its participation in government and the war in Syria.
- The Netherlands.
- Pakistan, where the government is confronted by two main opposition parties together, the staggering economy and aggressive actions by India, pushing to get a permanent hold on the disputed territory of Kashmir.
- Spain returned the governing Socialists at elections last Sunday (10 November), but they lack a majority and have to struggle with the drive-by Catalonia to secede as an independent country. In yet another check on “business as usual” conservative economic management, they have been forced into a minority coalition with the anti-establishment, anti-austerity party Unidas Podemos.
- An article posted by the ABC’s Zena Chamas provides a good summary, linking most of these cases. It includes protests by the Extinction Rebellion over climate change, started in England, rolling around the globe, led by teenagers and even children, with all kinds now joining in.
All of the locations have separate and different kinds of battles. Some of the governments under fire are conservative, some Left of centre. Some in the street movement are organised radicals, like the Leftist and also extreme Right activists who got into the French “yellow vests” protest movement and hardened up the actions against police.