Ten years ago, Hamburg, Rostock, and the woods around the tiny German town of Heiligendamm witnessed massive confrontations as anarchists and other rebels attempted to interrupt and delegitimize the summit of the world’s eight most powerful nations. As the 2017 G20 Summit looms in Hamburg this July, we revisit the demonstrations that took place against the G8 summit in 2007—to seek strategic insights, study how the terrain has changed, and illustrate what it is like to lead lives of passionate resistance.
In 2005, when the rulers of the eight most powerful countries in the world gathered in Scotland, capitalism seemed invincible and eternal. Most protesters limited themselves to begging the G8 to be nicer to the nations on the receiving end of colonialism and imperialist wars. Yet a few thousand anarchists, recognizing how short-lived “the end of history” would be, set out on a seemingly suicidal mission to blockade the summit and demonstrate what sort of resistance it would take to create another world. Today, as the 2017 G20 Summit in Hamburg approaches, we publish this retrospective to keep the adventures and lessons of 2005 alive as part of the contemporary heritage of the international anarchist movement.