Quebec city prepares

jonathan flanders jon_flanders at compuserve.com
Mon Apr 16 10:14:04 MDT 2001


>> the group organizing housing for
protesters -- now expects upwards of 25,000 protesters to make the trip to
Quebec's picturesque capital city, over one third of them from the U.S. <<

I just got back from a holiday weekend in Quebec City. Indeed, the city is
quite nervous about what to expect. The concrete-anchored steel fencing
placed along the streets looks quite ominous, but I fail to see how it will
do much to contain thousands of people.

Since the old city is walled in, it would seem easier for the authorities
just to set up check points at the gate, but perhaps this Belfast style
approach is too much for the Canadians to contemplate.

The english language Gazette carried a long debate on FTAA, pro and con
while we were there. And CBC Radio One featured a major report on trade in
Latin America. This is a bit more plain discussion than I am used to seeing
in the corporate press in the US.

McDonalds and Burger King both are represented in the old city, in
buildings that are part of the 17th century French provincial architecture.
It probably wouldn't resonate too well if photos of window smashing take
place there.

At the border, on the way in, we were asked if we were going to the
protests, when we said no, nothing further was done. I guess a station
wagon with two kids didn't fit the profile.

Jon Flanders



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