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Visiting the Borderless City: Traveling via the Internet
Unformatted Document Text:  sheltered nature of the delegates’ visit came Saturday night when some two-thousand guests were bused under heavy guard for a dinner at the New York Stock Exchange (Barry, 2002b). This protection was an extension of the heavy security surrounding the Waldorf Astoria Hotel where the forum was being held. In addition to four-thousand city police, there were FBI, Secret Service and private security officers stationed in and around the hotel. Traffic was banned on nearby streets and guests were issued special identification cards allowing them to enter the hotel where they then had to pass through a metal detector (Goldman, 2002). The reason for these extreme security measures was not just the fears of terrorism created by the September 11 attacks but the recent history of protests at previous gatherings of global economic leaders. Last year in Switzerland, troops prevented protestors from getting near the forum in Davos, so they reassembled in Zurich where violent confrontations erupted (The Los Angeles Times, 2001). Since November of 1999 when major clashes between demonstrators and police took place in Seattle, there have been street battles in several other cities playing host to forums discussing global economic policy, including Genoa, Prague and Quebec City. It was with these previous violent clashes in mind that New York officials instituted such intense security measures. They even stationed extra police in front of businesses such as the Gap and Starbucks which have been targets of past vandalism. In some ways the protestors had come to attack precisely what the tourist city represents: the power of multinational capital to transform urban space. Transnational corporations transform cities when their chain restaurants and brand name retailers displace locally owned shops. Moreover, business professionals who are part of these corporations often must travel to monitor global transactions, and to the extent they demand consistency across cities, they

Authors: Fotsch, Paul.
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sheltered nature of the delegates’ visit came Saturday night when some two-thousand guests were
bused under heavy guard for a dinner at the New York Stock Exchange (Barry, 2002b). This
protection was an extension of the heavy security surrounding the Waldorf Astoria Hotel where
the forum was being held. In addition to four-thousand city police, there were FBI, Secret
Service and private security officers stationed in and around the hotel. Traffic was banned on
nearby streets and guests were issued special identification cards allowing them to enter the hotel
where they then had to pass through a metal detector (Goldman, 2002).
The reason for these extreme security measures was not just the fears of terrorism created
by the September 11 attacks but the recent history of protests at previous gatherings of global
economic leaders. Last year in Switzerland, troops prevented protestors from getting near the
forum in Davos, so they reassembled in Zurich where violent confrontations erupted (The Los
Angeles Times, 2001). Since November of 1999 when major clashes between demonstrators and
police took place in Seattle, there have been street battles in several other cities playing host to
forums discussing global economic policy, including Genoa, Prague and Quebec City. It was
with these previous violent clashes in mind that New York officials instituted such intense
security measures. They even stationed extra police in front of businesses such as the Gap and
Starbucks which have been targets of past vandalism.
In some ways the protestors had come to attack precisely what the tourist city represents:
the power of multinational capital to transform urban space. Transnational corporations
transform cities when their chain restaurants and brand name retailers displace locally owned
shops. Moreover, business professionals who are part of these corporations often must travel to
monitor global transactions, and to the extent they demand consistency across cities, they


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