Red and Black Telly roundup.









A sidenote to one statement

Anarchistická Federace

The Internationale of Anarchist Federations has made a statement on the war in Ukraine, but we consider it insufficient.

Operation Solidarity

The Committee on Relations of the Internationale of Anarchist Federations (CRIFA), which met in Marseille on 19-20 March, discussed, among other things, matters relating to the ongoing war in Ukraine. Although there are different views among the member federations on some points, they agreed to continue the discussion. The debate resulted in common positions which were summarised in a compromise statement entitled “Against war, for global solidarity” (full text at the end of this article).

The Czech Anarchist Federation (AF) agreed to the statement because it expresses some general principles that are our own, but is nevertheless very dissatisfied with it internally, and is therefore engaging in further discussion. We come to the joint debate with a statement of our positions, a reference to our activities and the points we consider to be essential. But this is not just an internal debate within the Internationale of Anarchist Federations (IFA), our comments are directed towards the wider anti-authoritarian movement (in particular) in Europe.

So here are the very brief discussion points from AF:

1) We understand the joint IFA statement as a compromise, but it does not fully express our positions.

2) We advocate first and foremost that movement should listen to anarchists in Ukraine, Russia and Belarus.

3) We consider any disregard of their positions and decisions to be arrogant, unempathic, and an expression of ideological supremacy, which we find unacceptable. Eastern Europe has been treated this way by the Western power bloc for long. We do not intend to tolerate anything like this in the international anarchist movement.

4) We fully support both combat and non-combat activities of anarchists in Ukraine. We are familiar with their attitudes and dilemmas. We appreciate their difficult decisions. We refuse to ideologically judge them from the comfort of peaceful areas.

5) We recognize the need to quickly repel the Russian invasion, for the sake of the working class in Ukraine, as well as in Russia and Belarus. The only way to stop this war is through the military defeat of the Russian army. There is currently no sufficiently strong anti-militarist movement in Russia and Belarus to effectively sabotage the attack, and this situation cannot be expected to change in the near future.

6) We find it impertinent to claim that both sides of the war in Ukraine are the same. Putin’s regime is infinitely more brutal than a capitalist democracy, where there are at least some possibilities for the development of anti-authoritarian networks and relationships. Moreover, the Russian army has absolutely no respect for any international human rights conventions; on the contrary, it systematically massacres the civilian population in order to undermine the morale of the defenders. Supporting the armed struggle against the occupiers is therefore a duty for anyone who does not want to completely discredit themselves in the eyes of the Ukrainian people.

7) We disagree with the claim that this is a war between Russia and NATO. Some NATO states are pro-Russian (Hungary), most are staying away or employing only declarations and limited sanctions, aiming to not damage the domestic capital. NATO’s practical support for Ukraine is utterly trivial, hesitant and alibist. NATO has practically sacrificed Ukraine with this approach, leaving the entire burden of the Russian invasion on Ukraine and its people.

8) We actively support the repression-stricken anarchists in Russia and Belarus.

9) We regret that at the international level, anarchists are not able to take a clearer position and, as a whole, provide practical help to the comrades of the affected countries. We are afraid that the defeatist statements will discredit many organisations and collectives in the eyes of our friends from Eastern Europe. We regret to say that Eastern European organisations will unlikely for example cooperate more with the IFA in the face of its failure in responding flexibly and with empathy. This will create a vicious circle of domination by federations not directly affected by the current conflict.

We could, of course, elaborate more, but we do not consider it expedient. We want to listen and provide practical solidarity instead of slogans that appear to be useless in the face of reality.

We want to show that the positions of anarchists outside the imperial centres of Western civilisation are valuable and deserve respect. We understand anarchism as a set of principles capable of responding dynamically to what is happening around us, not as a rigid ideology with no connection to reality. We want to primarily see people and communities, not our own egos trapped in ideological and cultural frameworks.

IFA: Against the war, for global solidarity

The Committee of Relations of the International of Anarchist Federations (CRIFA) met in Marseille on 19-20 March 2022, and discussed matters on the ongoing war in Ukraine. Although there are different views on some points among member Federations, on which we commit to continue exchange and constructive discussion, important common points emerged from the discussion.

We condemn the criminal aggression to Ukraine promoted by the Russian government, alongside all militarisms, and we stand in solidarity with oppressed people from both sides of the border, promoting active support to the victims of the conflict, to refugees, deserters and prisoners from all sides of this war and of its potential expansion. In the contexts in which our different federations operate, we must expose and oppose the role of NATO, the US and the EU in also creating the preconditions for allowing the Russian state to attack its weaker neighbour with the complicity of its puppet, Belarus. We denounce the rise of authoritarianism across the world in recent years, which has seen the growing role of armies in public policies. With the current situation, we especially stress the growing militarization of society in the context of increasing rearmament across the EU, amidst generalized calls for a European Army, to the detriment of social expenditure.

The poor and oppressed people of the world are always the losers in wars. They have become cannon fodder and have been uprooted from their homes, and face poverty and sickness as a result of this war. At the same time, the global bosses continue to work to control the world’s resources. We stand against global capitalism and nationalism that are the causes of war. Instead we have to fight the class war, countering the war industry and public spending on war, and the whole logic of war, and to promote wider horizontal mobilizations of workers and collectivities.

We likewise stress the danger of making the mistake of defending “our” nation or “our” country, highlighting our anti-nationalist and defeatist/refusal positions, as our enemy is in “our” country and it’s “our” national state or national bourgeoisie. Instead we aim to build solidarity amongst all proletarians, and stress the global character of capitalist states.

Confirming our historical values of internationalism, solidarity and global kinship across borders, we confirm our opposition to all crimes and massacres perpetrated by the capital and the state, from the genocide of Black and indigenous peoples that continues today in Brazil, Latin America and all across the Global South, to the destruction of the environments perpetrated by the logic of states, profit and markets which is threatening the very life of our planet.

In the perennial war of the oppressors against the oppressed, we see the worsening of the living conditions of poor people around the world due to the pandemic and regional wars that began in recent years, as a consequence of the growing cost of basic commodities and further spending on armaments due to war economy. We especially stress the tragedy of migrants, marginalized and racialized people who are denied the most basic rights, and we stand alongside the last, the forgotten, the discriminated, against states, capitalism, fascism, racism, patriarchy and exploitation.

Direct Action: the education of revolutionaries.

Chapter Thirty-One of The Authority of the Boot-Maker by Mal Content.

“Anarchism is neither sectarian nor dogmatic. It’s theory in action. It doesn’t have a pre-determined worldview. It’s a fact that anarchism is manifest historically in all of man’s attitudes, individually or collectively. It’s a force in the march of history itself: the force that pushes it forward.”

– Nestor Makhno: to Francisco Ascaso and Buenaventura Durruti, Paris, 1927.

This, my friends, is where the cop-out ends, once you’ve accepted that there is no one above or below you, you become responsible for everything that happens within your sphere of influence. Who gives governments the power to abuse, torture and kill? It is you. The prison I referred to earlier exists only in the mind, in the collective consciousness, the defeatist attitude that: “nothing can be done”. In fact everything can be done and already is, in this world we built with our hands, eyes and brains. Everything you require to live is provided by your fellow workers, as you provide for them. The intervention of bosses, accountants, academics and politicians only serves to make the process less efficient and pleasant to operate. If we allow these intermediaries to manage our desires they will stifle and kill them. Despite not being noticeably more competent or wise than anyone else they have been elevated above their fellows and it isn’t in their interests to upset the applecart. They will patiently explain why we can’t have what we want, just yet.

“Our people stand for action on the march. It is while going forward that we overtake. Don’t hold them back, even to teach them `the most beautiful theories’ …”

– Francisco Ascaso, quoted by Paz and others.

Direct action is that which seeks its ends without the mediation of a third party; it does not necessarily involve protest, and where it does, is not limited to protesting. Breaking up a fight is direct action, calling the police is not. It can be anything from distributing free food to the needy or recycling old clothes, to strikes, sabotage and factory occupations. This principle demands that those who have most invested in a struggle should direct it, whilst relying on solidarity from others, so priority should be given to projects and organisational forms which give confidence to those who are marginalised or unused to taking action.

Q. How many Anarchists does it take to change a light bulb?

A. None – “The light bulb must change itself!”

– Anon.

Direct action is most popularly associated with the practice of revolutionary syndicalism or industrial unionism, which gained currency at the turn of the last century but lost out to Bolshevism; however the abject failure of political and industrial representation has revived its popularity in this one.

The importance of direct action goes far beyond its immediate goals; it ingrains the habit of taking responsibility, of working with others in a voluntary and horizontal fashion for reasons other than personal reward. It builds confidence and trust, shares skills and teaches by example. A solidarity action that at first glance seems to have only a minor impact, in fact operates on several fronts. It gives satisfaction to the participants, courage to fellow workers who hitherto felt powerless, and issues a warning to the exploiters that their acts have consequences. It helps repair the social cohesion and sense of community that capitalism tries so hard to abolish. Above all every comrade must feel valued and supported, every blow must be returned, until over time a culture of militant solidarity is established, only then can we act coherently in our common interest, and prise power from the exploiter’s grip.

There are many traps into which revolutionaries can fall; relying on the limited vision and experiences of a few people for example, or on the other hand diluting the movement with those who have too much invested in the status quo; falling back on dogma, or abandoning essential principles. It’s a mistake to assume that every oppressed person is ready and able to shake off their oppression, and equally erroneous to wait until conditions are perfect. To transform society we must transform ourselves, we can do it along the way but we have to start now. Lines must be walked between making real improvements to the lives of people in the here and now, and giving in to reformism, we want the earth, but we’ll take it a piece at a time.

“This task of laying the groundwork for the future is, thanks to Direct Action, in no way at odds with the day to day struggle. The tactical superiority of Direct Action rests precisely on its unparalleled plasticity: organisations actively engaged in the practice are not required to confine themselves to beatific waiting for the advent of social changes. They live in the present with all possible combativity, sacrificing neither the present to the future, nor the future to the present. It follows from this, from this capacity for facing up simultaneously to the demands of the moment and those of the future and from this compatibility in the two-pronged task to be carried forward, that the ideal for which they strive, far from being overshadowed or neglected, is thereby clarified, defined and made more discernible.

Which is why it is both inane and false to describe revolutionaries drawing their inspiration from Direct Action methods as “advocates of all-or nothing”. True, they are advocates of wresting EVERYTHING from the bourgeoisie! But, until such time as they will have amassed sufficient strength to carry through this task of general expropriation, they do not rest upon their laurels and miss no chance to win partial improvements which, being achieved at some cost to capitalist privileges, represent a sort of partial expropriation and pave the way to more comprehensive demands.

From which it is plain that Direct Action is the plain and simple fleshing- out of the spirit of revolt: it fleshes out the class struggle, shifting it from the realm of theory and abstraction into the realm of practice and accomplishment. As a result, Direct Action is the class struggle lived on a daily basis, an ongoing attack upon capitalism.”

– Emile Pouget: ‘Direct Action’.

The Gaza Centre for Human Rights has been targeted and destroyed by Israel

Aotearoa Workers Solidarity Movement

Palestine Solidarity Network media release, 18 May 2021

The offices of the Gaza Centre for Human Rights have been targeted and destroyed by a missile from an Israeli fighter jet.

New Zealander Julie Webb-Pullman has been working for the Centre for several years as an international expert on gathering evidence of Israeli war crimes against Palestinians in Gaza. (Julie is currently waiting to return to Gaza after being delayed in New Zealand through Covid 19)

So far the Centre, under Julie’s guidance, has sent over 2000 claims of war crimes relating to Israel’s attack on Gaza in 2014 and its targeting the Great March of Return protests in March 2018.

Earlier this year the International Criminal Court made the formal announcement that they are opening an investigation into allegations of grave Israeli breaches of International Humanitarian Law. Israel is furious and has tried to stop the investigation.

Now Israel has seized the opportunity to hit back with missiles from a Israeli fighter jet.

The Centre is making an appeal for funds to get back up and running and PSNA is co-ordinating fundraising here.

People can donate to:

Account name: PALESTINE SOLIDARITY NETWORK

Account number: 38-9015-0849542-02 (Please put GCHR in the reference)

This is a message from Julie describing the photo and the damage.

I would really appreciate it if you could also appeal for funds for Gaza Centre for Human Rights – our offices were directly targeted and destroyed a few days ago. We need to replace printers, photocopiers, furniture etc.

Our electronic backup files are safe, but all of the original documents have been destroyed.

Attached (above) is a picture of the destruction – our offices were on the third floor, the translators’ office is the one with the blue wall, my office is at the front. Was.

Like almost every building in Gaza, it is a mixed residential and office tower.

We expect the New Zealand media will report on this and the government will condemn outright this bombing of a human rights organisation.

John Minto

National Chair, Palestine Solidarity Network Aotearoa

johnminto@orcon.net.nz

IFA Communiqué – Mayday 2021

Mayday 2020 in Dorset.

Why we celebrate May Day

Solidarity with Exarcheia! | Statement

Reproduced in full from Organise Magazine

On Monday the 26th of August, the Greek police launched a large operation in Exarcheia, the famous rebel district in the centre of Athens. This is a unique place in Europe for its high concentration of squats and other self-organised spaces, but also for its resistance against repression and solidarity with migrants and the precariat.

Early in the morning, the squats of Spirou Trikoupi 17, Gare, Rosa de Fon and Transito were surrounded by huge police forces: anti-riot police, anti-terrorism police and secret police. The police then launched a large repression operation, leading to over 100 arrests. Migrants have been sent to camps known for inhuman living conditions. More than 15 kids that grew up in Athens and had their life there were deported. The security forces are now walling up the buildings that used to be home to so many.

This operation aimed to directly attack the incredible solidarity efforts that were developed by a network of people, many of them anarchists, to cope with the austerity measures the Greek state and the EU implemented.

It aimed to destroy a neighbourhood that has invented a new world where it has been possible to exist and live regardless of your economical, social or cultural background.

It aimed to keep Exarcheia under the control of a violent state that, like the rest of Europe, is ready to put humans in camps, simply because they were born on the other side of a border.

Exarcheia has many other squats, around 20, but the newly elected Greek prime minister promised a complete “cleaning”. More battles are to come.

The Anarchist Federation is expressing its full support to everyone in Exarcheia.

For a future without state, police or borders. ■

Solidarity! αλληλεγγύη!

Anarchist Federation

Additional from the Editor:-

Since this morning when the evictions took place Spirou Trikoupi 17 put out the call for people to gather and have taken a stand.

” Here, in Spirou Trikoupi 17 we have lived more than 2.000 people, coming from more than 10 different countries, and that we have crossed, at least, 3 borders till here. This wall that the state is building to seal the entrance will never be able to stop us!

See you at 6pm the solidarity assembly towards the squats in Notara 26 “

Since the evictions police have rounded up immigrants who will be dragged through the system and government workers have bricked up the doorways to peoples homes.

As night has fallen the police have taken a aggressive stance against the locals and tooled up with riot gear have taken to the streets for what is sure to be yet another night of horrific state violence.

Follow them & the AF for updates.
Spirou Trikoupi17
Anarchist Federation

External reports on what is happening from the ground.
Enough is Enough
Squat.net

RADICAL WORKERS’ BLOC AT TOLPUDDLE 2019

Tolpuddle Martyrs Festival and rally 2019 Friday, 19th to Sunday, 21st July 2019. View map No stall this year, apparently they were “oversubscribed”. Nah we don’t either, more time to get drunk then.

On the plus side the IWW are back, with a new improved stall run by Dorset branch.

Wob kitchen will run from Friday evening to Sunday lunch, next to the Big Tent; you’ll hardly notice the difference. Wessex Solidarity will make some of our literature catalogue available on the day. We’ve lots of new stuff that isn’t in the reference library as we’re running out of storage space – it hasn’t been updated for years. Why not get in touch now if there’s a subject you’re particularly interested in.

Catering Cadre: Comrade Les, our Wob kitchen chef is offering free training on outside and event catering for Radical Workers and groups who want to feed their members, homeless or unemployed workers in a safe and cost-effective way. Topics including:

  • Basic Health safety and hygiene.
  • Basic budget and Menu planning.
  • Basic dietary requirements.
  • Basic safe use of LPG and Butane gas cookers.

Let us know if you’re interested or come and see us about it at the festival.

Safe Space Policy: “don’t be a dick”.

This year we ask Radical Workers to be especially kind to members of the Prison Officers Association, as they are ever so sensitive, and easily upset by loud noises and rude words.

Bloody hell it was hot! Tolpuddle R.W.B. 2018

Anti-fascist callout, Swindon 9th February 2019

A fascist infestation is anticipated this saturday in Swindon.

https://www.swindonadvertiser.co.uk/news/17415220.swindon-yellow-vest-protesters-to-to-hold-demo-on-saturday

The event is being promoted by Martin Costello and Luke Nash Jones, who got chucked out of UKIP last year for abusing staff in a socialist bookshop while wearing Donald Trump masks.

The weirdoes will now put on yellow vests in imitation of French anarchists to express their disdain for foreigners and their enthusiasm for WTO rules.

Swindon Trade Union Council are inviting humans to gather at the cenotaph, regent circus, at 13:00 hrs to oppose them. facebook event

Spoons strike solid.

From Bristol SolFed on twitter