A Human Movement
Wednesday, July 16, 2003
In following the Tour de France and the protests that interrupted Mr. Armstrong I constantly hear Media drop the name Jos� Bov� with the only qualifying information "radical farmer" and no mention of what the protests signify. From the website FoodFirst (perhaps comrades-in-arm with SlowFood?) I found his biography rich with the fight against GMOs, corporate agribusiness and the ruin of small farmers.

During the 1970s in his native France, Bove and his wife helped to organize land occupations to prevent the expansion of military bases onto farmland in the Larzac plateau, and in 1976 he spent three weeks in prison for his role in the invasion of a military outpost. In 1987, he and colleagues established the Confederation Paysanne (CP), an organization composed of and for French small farmers and for their continued existence. The following year, Bove and the CP organized an event in Paris -- "Plowing the Champs Elysees" -- to protest EU farm policies. And, in a move that led to international fame and a six-week stay in prison, Bove organized and helped in the partial demolition of a half-constructed McDonald's in his hometown of Millau in 1999. On many occasions, he has also demonstrated his internationalism in defiance of governmental authority. For example in 2001, he and 1,000 Brazilian peasants uprooted three acres of Monsanto's genetically-modified soy in Rio Grande do Sul, and as a result he was deported.

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