Seeds of Fire: A People’s Chronology

Recalling events that happened on this day in history.
Memories of struggle, resistance and persistence.

Compiled by Ulli Diemer

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January 12, 1876
Birth of Jack London (1876-1916), journalist, novelist and socialist.
Further Reading: Jack London: The Iron Heel
January 12, 1904
The indigenous Herero people begin a revolt against German colonial rule in Southwest Afrika (now Namibia). Germany’s response is a war of extermination: the first genocide of the twentieth century.
January 12, 1957
The Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) is founded by a group of African-American clergymen, including Martin Luther King, Jr.
January 12, 1987  
Twenty West German judges are arrested for blockading the U.S. Air Force base at Mutlangen, where nuclear-armed cruise missiles are deployed. Judge Ulf Panzer states: “Fifty years ago, during the time of Nazi fascism, we judges and prosecutors allegedly ‘did not know anything.’ By closing our eyes and ears, our hearts and minds, we became a docile instrument of suppression, and many judges committed cruel crimes under the cloak of the law. We have been guilty of complicity. Today we are on the way to becoming guilty again, to being abused again. By our passivity, but also by applying laws, we legitimize terror: nuclear terror. Today we do know...”
Related Topics: Cruise MissilesJudgesNuclear Weapons
January 12, 1994  
A massive worker-student demonstration in Mexico City demands an end to the government’s offensive against indigenous peoples.
January 12, 2002
The “Refusenik” movement begins when 53 Israeli soldiers sign an ad refusing to serve in the West Bank or Gaza Strip. Their letter concludes: * We shall not continue to fight beyond the 1967 borders in order to dominate, expel, starve and humiliate an entire people. * We hereby declare that we shall continue serving in the Israel Defense Forces in any mission that serves Israel’s defense. * The missions of occupation and oppression do not serve this purpose – and we shall take no part in them.

January  February  March  April  May  June  July  August  September  October  November  December
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For more information about people and events in Seeds of Fire, explore these pages: