A - I n f o s
a multi-lingual news service by, for, and about anarchists **

News in all languages
Last 30 posts (Homepage) Last two weeks' posts

The last 100 posts, according to language
Castellano_ Català_ Deutsch_ English_ Français_ Italiano_ Português_ Russkyi_ Suomi_ Svenska_ Türkçe_ All_other_languages
{Info on A-Infos}

(en) AF bulletin - resistance #10 - Feb 2000

From Mike AF <ncajsa@yahoo.com>
Date Thu, 17 Feb 2000 12:53:42 -0500


 ________________________________________________
      A - I N F O S  N E W S  S E R V I C E
            http://www.ainfos.ca/
 ________________________________________________

          resistance - bulletin of the Anarchist Federation (Britain)

                            ISSUE TEN - Feb 2000

---------------------------------------------------------------

Address: AF c/o 84b Whitechapel High Street, London, E1 7QX, England, UK
E-mail: acf@burn.ucsd.edu   Web: http://burn.ucsd.edu/~acf/

Note: HTML and PDF versions of resistance are available via:
 http://burn.ucsd.edu/~acf/res/

For more in-depth articles, read Organise! magazine in print or on-line: 
 http://burn.ucsd.edu/~acf/org/

-------------------------------------------------------------

                      AF joins Anarchist International

The Anarchist Federation has now been accepted as the British affiliate to
the International of Anarchist Federations/l'Internationale des Federations
Anarchistes (IFA). IFA now has sections covering Argentina, Bulgaria,
Belgium, Britain, France, Germany, Luxembourg, Italy, Spain and Portugal.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------

                           The Blair Rich Project

The government has shown itself to be what anarchists have always said about
previous Labour administrations- a sweet little pussy cat for the bosses and
a vicious yard cat with sharp claws for the working class. The way Labour
has shaped up is no surprise to anarchists. We have never called for a vote
for Labour- unlike the left who when it comes around to an election ditch
their fake anti-Labourism.

We never doubted that this government would be not afraid to use
authoritarian methods faced with any sign of dissent. In fact, we said that
the election of a Labour government was looked on with pleasure by many
sections of the boss class. The Tory administration was discredited, and a
change was needed to restore confidence in parliament and the other British
institutions. The old creaking structure of British society needed a few
reforms, but not too many! These included a ditching of the House of Lords,
a reformed (but not abolished) monarchy, concessions to the Scottish and
Welsh nationalists -not to break up the United Kingdom but to preserve it-
and a deal to sort out the burdensome and expensive situation in Northern
Ireland, these were all needed in order to restore confidence in the British
political system.

Alongside these were a package of various reforms, like the abolition of
fox-hunting and greater access to the countryside by walkers, the abolition
of Section 28, as well as a promised 'green ' approach to roads, public
transport and industry. These were designed to win votes. Most of these
promised reforms have never been, and are unlikely to be, delivered. The
Blair government is terrified of passing even mild legislation that might
upset either the industrialists or the rural rich.

In preparation for any escalation of unrest, be it either in the streets or
in the workplaces, Home Secretary Jack Straw has prepared a whole raft of
repressive legislation designed to muzzle any direct action movements,
wherever these might appear.

                                Judge Dredd

At the same time, in the tradition of 'old' Labour, the Blair government has
continued with immigrant bashing by deporting at least 90,000 asylum seekers
and creating prison camps for many asylum seeker. A huge prison building
programme is under way, designed to house the spiralling numbers who fall
foul of the system either through poverty or through active resistance.
State surveillance is on the increase, through phone tapping, infiltration
of meetings, vast displays of police power with demonstrations swamped by
huge numbers of riot wagons, police helicopters, cops toting cameras and
vide gear as well as the sinister contingents of Robocops and Judge Dredds!

All Labour governments have been enemies of the poor and dispossessed. This
one has enthusiastically carried out the agenda of the bosses and the State.
Don't listen anyone who tells you to vote Labour, don't believe any claptrap
about the Labour Left either.

Which brings us to 'Red' Ken Livingstone. Our Ken has tried so hard to
further his career in the Labour Party by bending over backwards to please
the Blair regime. He was an enthusiastic warmonger when it came to Kosovo
recently. A more eager cheerleader for the bombings you could not find! The
Left expressed amazement at this, saying they would not support him - but
surprise surprise, when it came to the build-up for the election campaign
for London mayor, they have fallen over themselves to offer support in their
papers, even the most supposedly anti-Labour of them. When it comes down to
it, this anti-Labourism is a sham and the Left is revealed as a wing of
Labourism, unable to break with it and develop any genuine revolutionary
position. Livingstone is as much an enemy of our class as Blair. He voted
for the privatisation package on the Tube and has now made a clever
vote-winning U-turn. We do not call for a vote for him, on the misleading
position that this might be at all 'progressive' or 'left'.

                              Attacks Escalate

The Blair government is still popular among many people, it appears. But as
the attacks on us escalate, be they economic or the stifling of any
'rights', resistance may very well grow rapidly. Already resistance to Blair
and the ruling class behind him, is developing here and around the world.
The opportunities for the growth of a revolutionary anarchist movement seem
favourable. We must not shirk the tasks ahead.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------

                        CLASS WAR ON THE HOME FRONT

                          FIRE FIGHTERS FIGHT BACK

  11 East London firefighters were suspended on New Year's Day for refusing
  overtime. Firefighters are planning strikes if disciplinary action is not
                                  dropped.

 Demonstrate in support: Friday 4 February. Assemble 10.30 am, Homerton Fire
                 Station, Homerton High Street, London E9.

                            DEAD HAND OF UNIONS

 Thousands of health workers reacted angrily to the latest pay offer of just
  3%. The union UNISON showed where its class interests lie by refusing to
  hold a ballot for industrial action saying they could negotiate a better
 deal. The union bureaucrats managed to come up with an improvement of under
 half a percent! Which just shows the need to organise direct action outside
                             of union control.

                           PRIVATISED SOCIALISM?

Plymouth bus drivers have again refused to be suckered by measly pay rises -
   third time running. Drivers refused to settle for a firms original 2.5%
   offer and have rejected new offers of 3%. The bus company has made over
 800,000 pounds in profit for it's share holders - the biggest of which is 
                       Labour run Plymouth council.

                           DON'T HOLD YOUR BREATH

1999 saw the worst ever recorded fall in air quality in Britain. So remember
        to take fewer breaths between fags and don't inhale deeply.

                          DON'T VOTE, MAKE TROUBLE

In the irrelevant world of elections, Labour are now refusing to guarantee a
referendum on electoral reform, despite previous promises. Does proportional
      representation mean that if you don't vote nobody gets elected?

                              MERCHANT BANKERS

  In 1997 Christmas bonuses handed out to 1500 city bankers and brokers in
 London topped 1billion pounds, an average of 666,000 pounds (the number of
the beast?) each.

                             PINOCHET GOES HOME

 Jack Straw has looks set to allow General Pinochet to return to Chile, free
    from the danger of having to stand trial for the torture and murders
 committed when he was in power there. Pinochet managed to successfully use
 the 'Earnest Saunders' defence of senility. He's expected to recover soon.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------

                            Flu Epidemic My Arse

In England and Wales, there is a strict definition of 'flu - you have to
have the high fever and aching joints of the real influenza. In Scotland the
definition is less strict. But even here the 'flu outbreak has been no more
than 400 in every 100,000. An 'epidemic' is officially 1000 in every 100,000
so the rate of 'flu infections is officially 'normal' in Scotland, whilst
'higher than expected' in the rest of the UK. Unless you are Professor Liam
Donaldson, the government's Chief Medical Officer. Basing his figures on
200,000 people who have phoned the NHS Direct call centres asking for advice
on 'flu like symptoms, Donaldson then doubled the number of 'flu cases from
the official 144 -200 per 100,000 reported through GPs' to the magic figure
of 400. Bingo! There is now a 'flu epidemic! One of Labour's five election
promises - to reduce waiting lists in the NHS, is looking very wobbily
indeed. There is no epidemic. If the 'flu outbreak - normal at this time of
year - causes waiting lists to lengthen, this indicates not an epidemic, but
a health service with little investment. The NHS is still being run the way
it was under the Tories. If the beds are empty, then they are axed by the
sharp suited managers running the health service. EVERYTHING IS GEARED TO
THE MARKET. This fails to take into account things like epidemics and the
need for patients to be dealt with quickly. Many people are dying because
they cannot get the operations and treatment they need to save their lives.
The 'flu epidemic' is a smoke screen. By putting out such an idea and then
saying there is no problem in the NHS, before making vague promises about
more investment, Labour have shown that they are as unwilling as the
Conservatives to put more money into the NHS. Their God, the market, will
receive more sacrifices as more people die because they could not receive
treatment in time.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------

                               Vampire Alert

The Socialist Workers Party (SWP) is once again sniffing around what could
be loosely called the direct action movement . Seeing the growing awareness
in this scene of capitalism as our enemy , and gutted that an event of the
scale and militancy of June 18th could pass with not an SWP paper seller in
sight, the party leadership has obviously decided that we're a prime target
for recruitment.

The SWP has a long history of seizing on every new 'issue' or movement and
trying to dominate it, recruiting who they can and then moving on to the
next big thing. These parasites on resistance are as much our enemy as the
bosses. Just because they've got sod all power at the moment is no reason to
tolerate them. On the contrary, it's the best time to discredit their ideas
completely! Lots of people probably join the SWP because they were the first
and only 'alternative' they came across. Not everyone who sells the paper is
totally committed to the Party, and hopefully more and more will pack it in
and do something useful instead. But the party itself can only be our enemy.
It's not, and never will be on our side.

So let's learn from the past and tell the SWP and their rivals to stick
their leadership and their papers where the sun don't shine.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------

                                MayDay 2000

The next Global Day of Action against Capitalism takes place on May 1. So
far 23 cities around the world have pledged to take action and more are
following. In Britain, events are taking place in London, Manchester,
Sheffield and Bristol. The London event plans 4-days of action around
MayDay, networking, workshops, meetings, a bookfair, film festival, football
tournament and loads more besides.

The group currently working on the 2-day conference are organising a
pre-conference gathering to brainstorm ideas for workshops, meetings and the
structure of the Saturday and Sunday events. Everyone is asked to bring
along their energy, enthusiasm and ideas - it doesn't matter how sketchy
they might be at the moment.

There will be a social event in the evening and ideas will be pooled the
next day.

The Pre-Conference gathering takes place on Saturday 12th February at The
Pullens Centre, 184 Crampton Street, London SE17, same street as 56@
InfoShop (nearest tubes Kennington and Elephant and Castle)
----------------------------------------------------------------------------

                                More Misery

Burundi: Peace talks are taking place between 18 political parties in
Tanzania, who also host some 320,000 refugees, to try and end the civil war
started in October '93 when Hutu president Ndadaye was assassinated by Tutsi
paratroops. More than 200,000 have died as a result. The accompanying
cease-fire has been ignored, and the humanitarian situation continues to
deteriorate.

Reports also suggest Hutu rebels have been trying to buy arms from Zimbabwe,
who currently have 11,000 troops in the DR Congo to repress the Tutsi led
rebellion. They have also been accused of training Interahamwe Hutu militias
fighting Tutsis in the Great Lakes region.

Some 850,000 Hutus are being held in concentration camps. There are no
fences, but being caught beyond the perimeter amounts to a death sentence.
350,000 are being held on hills around the capital Bujumbura. Homes are
being looted; disappearances and killings are taking place particularly
targeting young men. The army killed at least 43 civilians near one of the
largest camps on December 31st. Water and medicines are precious, and food
is likely to run out soon as detainees are being prevented from replanting
crops. There is little or no shelter, with malnutrition and disease becoming
increasingly evident. Families were split during the internment, amidst
shootings and chaos. Over half the camps are receiving no aid. Camps were
set up after repeated attacks by Hutu rebels on Tutsi communities in
Bujumbura, sparking killings by Tutsi militias. Tutsis are the majority in
Bujumbura since Hutus were massacred 3 years ago by Tutsi militia. A similar
policy in the north and east 3 years ago curbed armed violence but left
thousands dead. The UN has pulled out after rebels killed 2 of its workers.

Kavumu camp has been shut off by the army following an apparent revolt by
its 16,000 detainees!
----------------------------------------------------------------------------

                             NEWS OF THE WORLD

Japan: The State has been tackling homelessness problem by employing 5000
homeless people in the past year as menial staff in nuclear plants. Paid
equivalent of 60 pounds/day, for which many have been diagnosed as having
contracted diseases such as leukaemia due to pathetic safety measures. A
third of Japan's electricity is generated by the nuclear industry, which is
accused of putting profits before safety, a situation highlighted by the
Tokaimura reactor coming within seconds of a meltdown.

Senegal: While the EU fishing industry blames each other, and calls for the
wholesale massacring of pesky wildlife in the wake of massive reductions in
quotas for fish such as cod depleted by decades of over-fishing, spare a
thought for the people of Senegal. For centuries they have fished their
coastal waters from small boats taking what they needed to live, using every
bit of their catch. Now they are seeing fish populations devastated by
trawlers from the EU and elsewhere. The EU fleet is one of the worlds's
largest. A third of their catch is thrown back into the sea - dead. A case
of the rich literally taking the food out of the mouths of the poor!

Russia: IMF economic reform programme is being blamed for causing social
disaster. Economic crashes in '92 and '98 led to hyperinflation wiping out
most people's savings. The percentage living below the minimum subsistence
level of 22 pounds/month leapt 22% to 35%, over 51million people! An
additional
half the population have a monthly income of only 26 pounds. 
People living in the
countryside fair worse than those in cities, with those in Moscow doing a
little better. Western economists argue that the situation isn't as bad as
it seems because the black market offsets poverty, and while TB has
re-emerged they point to the rise of the domestic beer industry as a
positive sign of economic progress. The first 5 months of '99 saw the
Russian population fall by 346,700 primarily due to an increase in the death
rate.

Venezuela: Following the December storms and mudslides which claimed
10-20,000 lives the government has admitted that at least 60 people were
killed by the military supposedly for looting. Having been forced to admit
the killings, President Hugo Chavez, a former paratrooper who has been
involved with previous military uprisings, has sought to protect the
military.

Sudan: Ugandan rebel group, the Lords Resistance Army killed 8 aid workers
in Southern Sudan during an attack on their vehicle.

Sierra Leone: After 9 years of war which saw widespread murder and rape of
civilians, and around 30,000 people with amputated limbs, a truth and
reconciliation commission is to be set up, with the UK donating 250,000 pounds
towards it - a small price from their arms profits! So, once again, a few
scapegoats, while the real perpetrators slip back into the ruling echelons?

Greece: 14.1.00. Demonstrators protesting educational reforms fought pitch
battles with police at the Polytechnic University in Athens.

Pakistan: Police have been accused of having a shoot to kill policy in
Punjab province. Since '97 over 850 people have been killed in so called
'police encounters'. Police claim their convoys come under attack from
accomplices on their way to visit crime scenes, and all the suspects just
happen to get killed in the crossfire. Doctors, lawyers, and even some
police admit that most if not all shootings are faked. Extra-judicial
killings, torture, rape and extortion accusations have all been levelled at
the police and the government, who are accused of operating this as policy.
While obviously denying this, the now former government pointed to the 240
police killed in shootouts since February '97.

France: Eight hundred angry miners fought running street battles with
police, ransacking a tax office and leaving burning cars in their wake,
following pay protests in Eastern France. The miners march started in Metz,
where a number of police cars, used to block their advance, were set on
fire. Police repeatedly fired tear gas at the protesters.
Miners protesting in the nearby town of Forbach, just across the border from
the German town of Saarbruecken, ransacked the local tax office later in the
day.

Czech Republic: In Prague, on the anniversary of the founding of the state
4,000 (mostly bonehead) fascists of the National Front attend a rally to
hear Vladimir Skoupy deny the Nazi Holocaust. 12 anarchist militants were
able to disrupt the rally by climbing the monument from which Skoupy was due
to speak, and unfurling two anarchist flags and a banner saying 'Let's stop
the nazis together'. Elsewhere in the city other anti-fascist demonstrations
were taking place nearby. One was made up of the mostly anarchist AFA,
carrying banners saying 'Against Fascism, Against Bolshevism'. The police
encircled them whilst nazis were free to go where they pleased.

Also:

* Libertarian Socialist Discussion Group. Meets every second Wednesday of
the month for action and discussion. 8pm in the Vine, Kenedy St. (off
Fountain St.) near Manchester town hall.

* Okasional Cafe. Squatted social space with film shows art exhibitions,
food and drink and discussion meetings at 61 Brighton Grove, Birchfields, in
Manchester area. Phone 0161 2266814.

* In opposition to building of M25 relief road a protest camp has been set
up in Gorse Wood in Essex. Contact the camp on 07957 715 977. Food, building
materials, clothing, bedding and camping equipment are urgently required.
Donations to Gorse Wood camp c/o Mick Stanners, 1 Wick Drive, Wickford,
Essex. The local campaign is organising demonstrations and action against
this and the building of 150, 000 homes in the Essex green belt. Donation to
'M Way No Way Campaign' c/o 17, St John's Green, Writtle, Chelmsford, Essex.
CM1 3DZ.

Prisoner support

Long time anarchist prisoner John Perotti has recently suffered a heart
attack and his spirits are understandably low. John was jailed over twenty
years ago for stealing $7. Because of his work as a prison lawyer the
American state has added more and more to his sentence. Send letters of
support. Write to John W. Perotti 167712 878 Coitsville-Hubbard Road,
Youngstown, Ohio, 44505, USA

----------------------------------------------------------------------------

                              What's Going on?

    Please visit the regularly updated Anarchist Federation diary page for
        details of the latest events: http://burn.ucsd.edu/~acf/news/



                       ********
               The A-Infos News Service
      News about and of interest to anarchists
                       ********
               COMMANDS: lists@tao.ca
               REPLIES: a-infos-d@lists.tao.ca
               HELP: a-infos-org@lists.tao.ca
               WWW: http://www.ainfos.ca
               INFO: http://www.ainfos.ca/org

 To receive a-infos in one language only mail lists@tao.ca the message
                unsubscribe a-infos
                subscribe a-infos-X
 where X = en, ca, de, fr, etc. (i.e. the language code)


A-Infos
News