Zone A Défendre
Tritons crété-e-s contre béton armé

Home > Texts > Testimonies > Testimony from the evictions of the Rohanne Forest

Testimony from the evictions of the Rohanne Forest

Tuesday 13 November 2012

All the versions of this article: [English] [français]

I had joined seven comrades up in the last tree house to be evicted Rohanne Forest . It was October 31st. We had a lot of fun up there, may be due to the anxiety and palpable tension we shared. We made jokes, and distributed the equipment which was left. We made a harness with a sling. We felt strong in being able to do all that in about twenty minutes, up in the tree. At one point it started to get heated down below, painted plastic men surrounded our tree and violently forced away our supporters on the ground. In ... some time, it’ll be our turn ... They approached with a cherry picker and after some hesitation, two torturers and ‘mountain rescuer’ (!?!) climbed onto the metal jaw and were hoisted up while the judicial police officers on the ground summoned us down, saying "we will not use force." Five of us did the turtle position (sitting in a circle, arms and legs intertwined), while three other friends climbed higher to prevent the tree from being cut. It is still there, by the way. The first torturer rips the tarp with a knife, the other waits behind, the alpine rescuer communicates with the ground. Once he’s entered, the guy stops, looks at us, and says "c’est un steack" (literally, “this is a steak”- possibly a police term for the turtle position). And then he goes to work. Head lock (he tried to rip my head off), throttling, fingers twisting ... he also crushed my knee a little. It was a weird moment, where I saw how fear disciplined me. I mean, I was aware of several opportunities to hit him, even hit him hard. With the pain he caused me, and his calm ... power and the support of the state and the law in his own hands ... I did not dare, maybe just as well. I asked my friends to let me go. Sorry. Chopped up, I resist gently, just trying to stop him. And my head reminds me that anyway I’m softer than a cherry picker. The steel jaw closes for once literally, in my back. I spend the descent with a knee in the top of my spine. With what right? Where does this all come from? On the ground it’s the robocops who take charge of me. I spent three hours handcuffed to a tree close enough to see my co-descenders trails there in the same state as me, sunken eyes, slaps and twisted tendons all over, steel jaws and a brute’s head. Then we’re together to try to fuck the shit out of them, put them in the ethical shit, wait til they’re afraid of wolves and the dark, that all this breaks out of us. They get themselves stuck, we wind them up. We live here, we’re not going away, or better yet we will settle wherever the state puts its dirty paws, its dangerous appetite, its big eyes. We need to not be so few, which seems to be on the way, and also to stop thinking that it is enough to throw stones*. But ok, I have hope. See you soon!

*but also, that’s it! Why don’t we hit them? « it’s not a question of why there are people who throw stones at the police but why are there so few ? » I would rather not go to prison if I weren’t sure some friends would reach me there.