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(en) UK, London Calling - THE BULLETIN OF LONDON CLASS WAR APRIL 2004

From Worker <a-infos-en@ainfos.ca>
Date Fri, 23 Apr 2004 21:15:22 +0200 (CEST)


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A - I N F O S N E W S S E R V I C E
News about and of interest to anarchists
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CAPS WILKO'S PICKET - This Saturday, April 24 Wilkinson's, The
Broadway, Stratford - nearest tube/br: Stratford 12.30 - 2pm
ISSUE 86 of Class War is OUT NOW! Get your copy now from the London address!
MAYDAY!
Mayday this year is famously not in London! We're going to
Barnsley - for the Yorkshire Miners' Gala, and Dublin, for the
anti-EU festivities. Although it's disappointing that the annual
anarchist street fun and games won't be taking place in London
this year, replaced by a picnic and anarchist cricket - as well as the
annual TUC march - the dwindling attendance left it struggling
last year. With the G8 to look forward to next year, we hope that
people going to Dublin will forge new links and make new
friendships which will help to make the showcase anarchist event
of 2005 a resounding success.

Although the Miners' Gala is likely to prove a more relaxing day
out than the exercise people will get in Dublin, it's the 20th
anniversary of the Miners' Strike this year. If you can't go to
Dublin and fancy a weekend in Yorkshire - or even a day-trip -
why not spend your Mayday with us in Locke Park, Barnsley?
Of course, for people staying in London, there's always the chance
of an unlawful arrest at the most heavily policed picnic London's
ever seen!
Whatever you're doing, have a good one on Mayday!

NEW ANTIFASCIST GROUP LAUNCHED
Antifa, a new anti-fascist group, was launched recently. From the
Antifa launch statement:
Antifa is a collective of militant anti-fascists committed to
opposing the rise of the far-right in Britain and abroad. We believe
in the 'no platform' philosophy and the tradition of fighting
fascism and racism stretching back to Cable Street, Red Lion
Square, Lewisham and Waterloo. We are a network of various
organisations and individuals who see anti-fascism as part of the
class struggle. After decades of underperforming, the far-right
now poses a significant threat politically. This initiative aims to
bring together those who wish to act rather than talk. We aim to
oppose the far-right's electoral politics and - where possible - do
so by means of direct action. As well as street activities, we aim to
promote militant anti-fascism in the football and music areas.
The Antifa website - www.antifa.org.uk - will serve as an
information and activity site where we will post up intelligence on
far-right activities - and we invite other anti-fascists to join us in
our activities.
Some of the groups supporting the Antifa initiative are the
Anarchist Federation, the Class War Federation, No Platform and
the Solidarity Federation.
Although we come from the anarchist tradition, we are open to
work with any group or individual serious about militant
anti-fascism. We will NOT, though, work with any state affiliated
groups.
If you are interested in getting involved, please contact Antifa via
email - info@antifa.org.uk - or via post - c/o 84b Whitechapel
High St, London E1 7QX.

LUCY PARSONS HARRASSED BY POLICE - FROM
BEYOND THE GRAVE!
Word reaches us from Chicago of a storm brewing over the
naming of a park after Lucy Parsons, who coined the phrase
"Behold your future executioners
Lucy Parsons died 62 years ago, but the controversy over her life
rages on over a plot of land at 4712 W. Belmont Ave.
That's the site of a proposed small park the Chicago Park District
wants to name after Parsons, a Chicago labor organizer who for a
time called herself an anarchist.
But Mark Donahue, president of the Chicago Fraternal Order of
Police, strongly opposes that idea. No doubt the execution of
Parsons' husband, Albert, in the Haymarket Riot that left eight
police officers dead caught his attention.
But historians say Albert Parsons wasn't guilty and neither he nor
his wife were at the riot.
Mayor Richard Daley backs naming the park after Parsons, an
African-American with Native American and Mexican blood who
continued to be a force in the labor movement until her death in
1942.
Nevertheless, Charles Paidock, a local labor representative, is
miffed at the tiff.
"I've represented a lot of people over the years, but never anyone
for an alleged incident 100 years ago," he said, speaking on behalf
of Parsons at a Park District meeting last week.
And Bob Matter, who also spoke on behalf of Parsons, noted the
woman was harassed by Chicago police in her lifetime.
"She was continually shut down by the Chicago Police
Department her whole life when she tried to speak," he said.
"Now, the Chicago police are trying to shut the memory of her
down.

**REVIEWS**
"Violent London: 2,000 Years of Riots, Rebels and Revolts", Clive
Bloom.
Pan Books, ?9.99

This book has been out in hardback for quite a while. The reason
we've not reviewed it before is that we were unable to find a
member prepared to part with a score for a crock. Looking at the
quotes on the back, one can see that Violent London is the
product of some manner of liberal lefty: "Bloom's viewpoint is
nicely balanced, critical of government and especially of the police
but not unreasonably so, and not too passionately keen that the
rebels should win every time" (Times Literary Supplement). That
on its own is not enough to condemn this book as a great
disappointment: the contents do that well enough without
assistance.
What first struck me as peculiar about Violent London is that its
author is Professor of English and American Studies at Middlesex
University. His previous works include titles such as Gothic
Horror: A Reader's Guide from Poe to King and Beyond and
Bestsellers: Popular Fiction Since 1900. Why has he strayed so far
from his subject? I always feel wary of people who are well-known
for writing one sort of book, but then venture into a field they
know little of. Sometimes the results are wonderful: but more
often they turn out like Violent London, an interesting enough
book about a fascinating subject, but a book which leaves one
with the impression that the author has greatly struggled.
There are significant omissions too. Although there are a few
pages on Cable Street, there is little about anti-fascism since the
war. Though the ANL (Mk I) gets a few mentions, there is
nothing about AFA, the 43 Group, Welling or Waterloo - or the
ANL Mk II. It's perhaps one thing to be unaware of the 42 Group
(though unlikely: it's not many years since the 43 Group book
came out) - but to have missed events like Waterloo in '92 or
Welling the following year beggars belief. Equally, there is nothing
about Irish protests, like the Bloody Sunday march when
hundreds of fascists were arrested.
More strangely, in the preface Bloom refers to "the story
unfolding" in "Smithfield, Clerkenwell Green, Hyde Park,
Trafalgar Square and the streets and alleys of Whitechapel,
Brixton, Dalston or Broadwater Farm". Dalston, despite the
fighting there when Mosley came to speak in the early '60s,
receives no further mention in the book.
In his acknowledgements, Bloom nicely thanks Class War for
permission to quote from our website. MA'M extended the same
generosity. However, Bloom's mentions of Class War are both
complimentary - "The three main groups that have emerged as
the coordinating backbone of the anarchist movement are the
Animal Liberation Front (ALF), Class War and Reclaim the
Streets (RTS)." (which on rereading it sounds very much like a
backhanded compliment) - to rather savage and insulting attacks:
"[Class War's] general credo was little more than a poorly restated
(and unacknowledged) nineteenth-century Bakuninist socialism
lacking the sophistication of mainstream Marxism but retaining
the excitement of anarchist spontaneous revolution". Eh? He also
puts the boot into us (and the ALF) by highlighting former
members' previous association with fascism. The 'Keep It Spikey'
leaflet gets a quick mention: but
Bloom really doesn't have a clue what he's talking about when it
comes to Class War or MA'M.
Violent London should be a really good bookand it is an
interesting read. However, when he gets on to talking about
events I know well I am left disappointed. It's worth borrowing
from a library or shoplifting - or maybe getting secondhand. But it
isn't worth a tenner. 2/5


"Stakeknife: Britain's Secret Agents in Ireland", Martin Ingram &
Greg Harkin
O'Brien Press, ?8.99
Stakeknife is a very interesting, readable book by a former
member of the Army's Force Research Unit and a journalist for
the People. I'm not sure precisely why I feel uneasy about the
book - it makes a damning case against Alfredo Scappaticci and
provides interesting evidence about the activities of touts in the
Six Counties which seem to hold together. Perhaps the cause of
my unease is a distrust of anything emanating from members
(former or otherwise) of intelligence services, and my antipathy to
journalists. Be that as it may, it's surprising that (in England, at
least) the Stakeknife story has essentially vanished from sight. The
crown forces' use of touts - and their criminal activities - make
fascinating reading, and I feel that Stakeknife is a valuable
addition to a library about Ireland, sitting perhaps beside Fred
Hoyle's War Without Honour.
4/5

"John Zerzan and the Primitive Confusion", Boomerang #10
CHRONOS Publications, ?2.50 (inc. p&p from CHRONOS
Publications, BM CHRONOS, London WC1N 3XX)
This short pamphlet (29 pages) is a valuable examination of John
Zerzan's method in Zerzan's book Future Primitive. From the
looks of it, Zerzan's method was more than a little flawed, being
nothing more than fitting flesh on the bones of his assumed
conclusion. Zerzan, it's asserted, ignores evidence he's well aware
of, when it does not fit the conclusions he determined before
writing Future Primitive. Recent primitivist articles in Freedom
make this reprint of John Zerzan and the Primitivist Confusion
one of those rare publications which can genuinely be described as
timely. 4/5

REMEMBERING THE PAST - ANNIVERSARIES FOR APRIL

1: 1549 -- Diggers occupy St. George's Hill, near Cobham, Surrey,
seizing land to hold in common & to plant.
2: 1851 -- Joseph Lane (1851-1920), British anarchist, born.
3: 1969 -- US: 7,000 Illinois National Guardsmen mobilized to
quell a wave of shooting, stoning & looting that broke out in black
neighborhoods of Chicago in response to police brutality.
4: The Clash by the Clash released.
5: 1531 -- Richard Roose boiled to death for trying to poison an
archbishop.
6: 1878 -- Germany: Erich Muhsam, poet & anarchist militant,
lives, Berlin. Killed by the Nazis during the night of July 9 / 10,
1934 (Orianenburg Concentration Camp
7: 1926 -- Italy: The first of several attempts to assassinate Benito
Mussolini is made (by an Englishwoman, Violet Gibson;
Mussolini is slightly injured
8: 1966 - US: Last poll tax outlawed by Federal courts.
9: 1927 -- US: Massachusetts: Death sentences for Nicolas Sacco
& Bartolomeo Vanzetti are upheld.
10: 1981 -- Ireland: Imprisoned IRA hunger striker Bobby Sands
elected to British Parliament during the 6th week of his hunger
strike.
11: 1938 -- US: Richard Whitney, five-term president of the New
York Stock Exchange, is sentenced to 5 to 10 years in prison for
grand larceny.
12: 1918 -- Russia: Moscow headquarters of the anarchists
surrounded & attacked by Bolshevik troops.
13: 1570: Guy Fawkes born.
14: 1968 -- West Germany: 4,000 anti-Vietnam War student
protesters battle police in West Berlin.
15: 1902 -- Russia: In a general uprising, with riot, arson &
peasant plunder of estates, Sipyengin, the Russian head of the
secret police, is assassinated.
16: 1922 -- US: First sermon preached from an airplane. Ranks up
there with dropping cows from an airplane but not so exciting.
17: 1959 -- US: 22 arrested in Times Square for refusing to take
part in civil defense drill, New York City.
18: 1968 -- US: Army concedes that nerve gas sprayed from
planes, burned in pits, & released from 155mm shells at its
Dugway Proving Ground is responsible for the death of at least
6,400 Utah sheep.
19: 1993 -- US: Whacko Federal agents attack whacko Branch
Davidian compound near Waco, Texas, whacking or incinerating
over 80 women, men, & children.
20: 1969 -- US: The LA Free Festival in Venice, California ends in
violence before it begins with lots hurt & 117 arrested. Trouble
starts when police chase a youth through the crowd on the beach.
When they cuff him, the crowd starts chanting "Pig, pig, pig!" A
riot ensues & none of the bands scheduled to play appear.
21: 1913 -- France: Andre Soudy, member of the anarchist
Bonnot Gang, is executed.
22: 1873 -- France: Luigi Lucheni lives. An adherent of
"propaganda by the deed," he killed the Empress Elisabeth of Austria.
23: 1918 -- Ireland: General Strike ends conscription of Irishmen
into British army during WWI.
24: 1972 -- A 15-year-old plants a home-made bomb at police
HQ, Sleaford, Lancs.
25: 1993 -- US: Over one million march in Washington, D.C., for
gay, lesbian, bisexual, & transgender rights.
26: 1968 -- Germany: Photomontage pioneer and anti-fascist artist
John Heartfield dies, East Berlin, East Germany.
27: 1937 -- US: Social Security system makes its first benefit payment.
28: 1912 -- France: Jules Bonnot, French illegalist gang leader,
killed in police shootout.
29: 1916 - Ireland: The Easter Rising ends as Patrick Pearse and
the Volunteers surrender to British in Dublin.
30: 1883 -- Jaroslav Ha_ek born (1883-1923), Prague. Czech
novelist, anarchist, author of comic novel "The Good Soldier
Svejk
--COMPILED BY THE CLASS WAR HISTORIAN

**DIARY DATES**
Saturday 24 April: Campaign Against Prison Slavery picket of
Wilkinson's, The Broadway, Stratford. 12.30-2pm. Stratford tube/BR.
Saturday 1 May: Yorkshire Miners' Gala, Lock Park, Barnsley.
Saturday 1 May: Lots of stuff in Dublin
Saturday 1 May: Picnic in Hyde Park
Sunday 8 May: London Class War meeting. Contact your local member for details!
Saturday 15 May: Wolfe Tone Society James Connolly/Bobby Sands Commemoration. March in central London. No details at time of writing, phone 020 8442 8778 or visit www.wolfetone.org for information.
Tuesday May 18, STWC (!!) picket against George Bush Sr., 4.30-6.30pm, Landmark Hotel, 222 Marylebone Road, London NW1. Nearest tube Marylebone, Bakerloo Line. Although a trot do, should be some fun and games that night.
Class War
Po Box 467
London E8 3QX
www.londonclasswar.org
classwaruk-A-hotmail.com





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