Trying to find a way forward

ON UNCERTAIN GROUND

Where we are

Surveying the political, economic and social landscape, the curse ‘may you live in interesting times’ has never seemed more apt. The last couple of years have seen a series of political events that have caught most commentators off guard and there’s a feeling that the world is becoming more unpredictable and volatile by the day. To any rational observer of a radical persuasion, it’s clear that the political, economic and social system we live under is in crisis. Just one symptom of this are the divisions among our so called rulers over Brexit – these are not just about the arguments for and against but also what it actually means and how to implement it. They’re giving every appearance of not having a clue and are basically winging it from day to day.

We’re in a situation where a reasonably united radical movement should be putting a…

View original post 2,394 more words

Bristol Radical History Festival on Sunday 17th September at the MSHED (day after the anarchist bookfair)

Bristol Radical History and the Remembering the Real World War One groups are teaming up to bring you the Bristol Radical History Festival on Sunday 17th September (10.30am – 4.30pm) at M Shed.

Bristol Radical History Festival brings together historians, history groups, publishers and the public for a day of talks, walks, puppet shows and readings, films, bookstalls and displays uncovering radical histories in Bristol, the South West and beyond.

From mutinous Bristolian soldiers to rebellious anarchist women, from Bristol’s underground networks of war resistors to its rioters of 1831 we promise a ‘history-from-below’ approach, with speakers and performers eager to share authentic glimpses of a hitherto undocumented past.

Two important anniversaries are also being celebrated at the Radical History Festival. It is 800 years since the Charter of the Forest was signed granting rights, privileges and protections for the commoner, something which has been central to recent and past struggles to protect the nearby Forest of Dean. It is also 50 years since the ground-breaking History Workshop project was founded, aimed at breaking down barriers between universities and local historians and researching working class ‘history from below’.

A series of history talks are taking place in Studio 1 and 2 on Level 1 from 10.30am – 4.30pm.

Puppet shows, films and readings are taking place in the Gallery on Level 1 from 10.30am – 4.30pm.

History walks will be starting and ending at M Shed at 11.00am and 4.30pm.

Twenty five bookstalls and displays are situated on Levels 1 and 2.

Radical History Festival Programme

Note: events will be added to this list and there may be changes of times.

Turkey’s Kurdish antique town Hasankeyf to be destroyed with Ilisu Dam

Kurdistan Solidarity Network

Source

Turkeys-Kurdish-antique-town-Hasankeyf-to-be-destroyed-with-Ilisu-Dam-May-2016-photo-anfBATMAN, Turkey’s Kurdish region,— The Council of Batman City in Turkish Kurdistan held an important symposium this past weekend. The symposium was on Batman’s Hasankeyf district that sheds light on humanity’s past with its history. Former Minister of Culture and Tourism Ertuğrul Günay, academics, lawyers, parliamentarians, NGO representatives and other notables from the town participated in the symposium.

The two sections of the symposium were titled “Hasankeyf and the Dicle Valley” and “Hasankeyf and UNESCO.” The main goal of the event was to save the Kurdish town from the government’s ideologically motivated destruction through the construction of Ilısu Dam. With its history and geography, Hasankeyf is a significant town in the region.

The town where stones smell like history

Hasankeyf is one of the unique towns where history is preserved, and has been home to civilizations such as Hurrians, Mitannis, Assyrians, Urartians, Medes, Persians, Romans, Byzantines, Umayyads, Abbasids…

View original post 485 more words

Common press release from the medic, legal and DIY media team following the demo’ in Bure on the 15 August 2017

[Fr] http://vmc.camp/2017/08/17/a-bure-la-prefecture-continue-sa-strategie-descalade-brutale-au-prix-de-nombreux-ses-blesse-e-s-continuons-le-soutien/

In Bure on the 15 August 2017, around 800 people set off on a demo (numbers like this had never been seen  before for a non-declared demo in Bure). The prefecture deliberately chose a strategy of aggression and asphyxiation that led to a number of injured people.  The police deployed were twice the number deployed for the demo of the 18 February 2017, 15 riot cop vans and a water cannon were counted.

The route of the demo headed towards Saudron and not the “laboratory”, chosen to avoid the fortified red zone and all the blue team.  The objective was to arrive in a big field between the village of Saudron the “Espace Technologique” (an Andra Building) to highlight a very important Neolithic site discovered by archaeologists and ignored by Andra

Meanwhile the prefecture deliberately attempted to provoke people in the middle of Bure, 100m after the start of the demo.  Many riot cop vans were posted at the edge of the village.  Instead of falling into this trap, protesters intelligently decided to avoid confrontation and to go on a 4km detour across fields to get to the field that they wanted to go to.  Just before reaching this field on the edge of Saudronm riot cop vans and the water canon were deployed followed by the firing of tear gas which of course led to clashes in the middle of the village….

The police operation
apart from lots of tear gas and the water cannon being used, police also used  lanceurs de balle de défense (small hard rubber balls fired from a police weapon), fired above the waist (which is not “legally” authorised) injuring people.  They also used the diffrent grenades (stun grenades and flash bang grenades) thrown by hand but also using launchers that fired the grenades tens of metres behind the clashes that were taking place, causing serious injuries.

From a small part of the clashes at the end of the demo the following police weapons were found (at least) 15 stun grenades, 12 small hard rubber balls fired from lanceurs de balle de défense, 4 flash bang grenades.  This gives you an overall idea for the day.

List of injured people
The medic teams counted more than 30 injured people, including a couple with serious injuries and 3 people were hospitalised.  We take a look at one person hospitalised with a serious injury:

  • One person had their foot torn apart after the explosion of a flash bang grenade causing a triple open fracture on the bones of the foot. Surgeons that looked at the victim (after the first aid done by the medic teams) are now talking about the risk of amputating the toes because of the presence of plastic melted from the shoe into the tissue.  A photo is available here but is very gruesome to look at:

While injured people were being evacuated, police targeted people that were helping the injured, causing panic and more injuries.

For the more seriously injured people, the state ambulance/fire crews were called but we could see their difficulties in dealing with these kind of injuries for which they didn’t seem trained to deal with. Should these crews be trained to treat “war” injuries ou should these so called “non lethal arms” that mutilate and kill people stopped being used?

This record of events is very heavy and adds to the previous demo on the 18 February 2017 where 20 people were injured and 2 hospitalised.

Potential repression for the hospitalised people.
Not only did the police injure, mutilate and maybe cause amputations, they even went to hassle the injured in the hospitals, sometimes before they had even been treated to interview them or even confiscate personal items.

  • One person hospitalised in Neufchateau saw the police come into their bedroom to control their ID.
  • In the hospital in Nancy, police interviewed the person with a severe foot injury, in the afternoon of the 16 August.  One and a half hours of tiring interrogation done by the people responsible for a possible amputation.  One out of two questions concerned the other people present at the demo. “I’ll accept the interrogation but I have nothing to say, you’ve ruined my life” the reply of the kind cop “we are here for you, not against you, here to help you”.  90 minutes later the police came back with orders to check the person’s clothes.  “I’m tired, you’re pressuring me and it’s the second time that you’ve come into my bedroom!” Answer “I was kind, I didn’t have to be”

A strategy of repression that is more and more brutal.
It’s far away from the times when Andra and the Prefecture decided not to make a fuss, to avoid showing that people were contesting the project. Since a few months the police strategy has started to be more and more aggressive: daily provocations and intimidation, stopping demos, serious injuries.  Instead of protecting the laboratory and the other infrastructures which was the case in the past, the riot cops received orders to target protesters in the middle of villages, favouring division, injuring, mutilating…just how far will they go?

The objective of this kind of press release is not to fall into a counter propaganda of a victim, a sad summary or warrior overkill.  It is to better record the attacks of police on protests and to offer an account on the continuing repression in Bure.  We’ve taken note of this strategy and in the months and years to come, we’ll look at how to continue in lots of different ways.

Testimony from Robin, with a seriously injured foot.
Robin wrote this testimony on the 16 August, from his hospital bedroom
to share with everybody:

“I am Robin, the person that got a foot injury from one of the number of flash bang grenades that the riot cops fired onto protesters, near Bure on Tuesday 15 August 2017.  I’m in the hospital of Nancy.  My foot is in a terrible state, the grenade dug 3 cm into my foot with a diameter of 13 cm.  Most of the bones are broken.  Some have even disappeared, pulverised.  The shoe exploded, the plastic melted into the wound, so much that an infection is likely which would mean the amputation of 5 toes.  Added to that are 30 pieces of shrapnel in the other leg. The riot cops fired around 15 flash bang grenades, they were not in danger. Just before my foot was hit, I saw a grenade explode at head height. For me the objective of the police force at that time was  clearly to injure or kill, with the goal of terrorising those who fight and those who are not fighting yet.  On the medic team stretcher that I want to underline their courage and efficiency, I heard more grenades exploding. Despite the brutal change in my life that this injury has caused in my life as a father to 2 very young children, I call out more than ever to continue in this struggle, to get active or get back into it for some.

Write to Robin and other injured people: to write and show your support to Robin and other people injured during the demo, don’t hesitate to write to: Maison de résistance à Bure, 2 rue de l’Église, 55290 BURE, France. Correspondence and support messages will be forwarded to them.

Press contact : +337 53 54 07 31

email : sauvonslaforet@riseup.net / for the anti-répression arr@riseup.net

Undercover police within the social movements

It’s widely known that both Jacobs and Kennedy imported vast quantities of ketamine into the UK which had a devastating effect on many of their contacts.

Surrey and Hampshire Anarchist Federation

A brief look at the infiltration into political groups by the Special Demonstration Squad (SDS), an undercover unit of the British police’s Special Branch. The SDS used relationships with women activists to help give credibility to their false identities which were often created with use of dead children’s names.

The first indications of how deeply undercover police had infiltrated various groups in the broad movement came with the identification of Mark Kennedy as an infiltrator. Police Constable Mark Kennedy, posing as Mark Stone, infiltrated environmental and leftist networks for approximately eight years (2001-2009) in the Nottingham area, sometimes working with another undercover spy, a women, who posed as an environmental activist. He hosted meetings with activists in up to 23 countries including the USA, and took part in blockades, site occupations and sabotage, sometimes playing key logistical roles such as transport. He worked as a provocateur, encouraging activists to engage…

View original post 1,609 more words

B&H Housing Coalition launch

Brighton Benefits Campaign

 This conference is free but numbers are limited so tickets must be booked at Eventbrite 

Agenda

0900: Registration and coffee

0945: Welcome and introductory comments

1000: Question and Answer Session (Each MP will give an introduction)

  • Lloyd Russell – Moyle MP
  • Caroline Lucas MP

1100: Introduction (5 minutes for each facilitator) to workshops/seminars: A briefing paper will be available for each workshop prior to the conference

  • Temporary & Emergency accommodation
  • Community led housing
  • Privately rented accommodation
  • Residents, including leaseholders, of council owned properties
  • Benefits and Housing

1230: Report back on each workshop/seminar

1300: Lunch

1400: Introduction to workshops/seminars on specific issues with an emphasis on the disproportionate effect of such issues on different sections of our community: A briefing paper will be available for each workshop prior to the conference

  • Health and Housing
  • Advocacy & legislation
  • Living rents, affordability, and social housing
  • Accessibility
  • Homelessness (including utilisation of empty properties)

1530:…

View original post 448 more words

Fast Forward Festival 2017.

Surrey and Hampshire Anarchist Federation

Plan C are excited to announce Fast Forward 2017, a weekend of discussions, plenaries, workshops, music, food, walking and partying. We want this festival to be a vehicle for sharing experiences and enthusiasms, and building new relationships, ideas, and strategies that can equip us to confront capitalism today and build new worlds beyond it.

https://www.weareplanc.org/festival/?mc_cid=fa5439a319&mc_eid=c25d6dc96f

View original post