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(en) resistance issue 57 - Jan 2004. AF (Britain)

From Worker <a-infos-en@ainfos.ca>
Date Mon, 5 Jan 2004 12:30:32 +0100 (CET)


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From: E W <nastyned-A-email.com>
A TALE OF TWO TYRANTS
You could be forgiven for thinking that "The War Against Terror" is just an
excuse for aggressive American foreign policy. Certainly someone needs forgiving
judging by the range of excuses we've been given for starting the war on Iraq.
First it was because Saddam had "Weapons of Mass Destruction" ready to
use within 45 minutes. When no such weapons were found, despite rigorous
inspections both before and after the war, the excuse was changed to one
about human rights. Now the war was to bring freedom to the Iraqi
people, though how a country being occupied by foreign armies is free is unclear.

Of the fact that Saddam Hussein murdered and tortured thousands there
can be no doubt. But this never bothered the American or British states
when he was fighting Iran. When Saddam used poison gas on the people of
Halabja Donald Rumsfeld, now US Secretary of Defense, personally visited
Saddam to reassure him that the faint criticism from the US government
was only words and th ey continued to support him. Saddam only became a
problem when he started to control more of the worlds oil supply than
the US was happy with.
Now Muamar Gaddafi, one potential member of “the axis of evil” and
candidate to be the latest “new Hitler” has made a stunning
transformation into a friend of Britain and the US.
Has he done this by ending his tyrannical oppression of the people of
Libya? Are Libyans now safe to exercise such basic freedoms as, say,
criticising his government without fear of arrest by the secret police?
In a word, no.
Humans rights are off the agenda again and it’s by renouncing weapons of
mass destruction that Gaddafi has rehabilitated himself. Some old
machine parts and an ageing stock of mustard gas (a first world war era
weapon) will be destroyed and Libya will be welcomed back into the
“international community” (AKA the international ruling class). Expect
US oil companies to set up shop in Libya anytime soon. Once again
“ethical princip les” behind US and British foreign policy are clear:
they’ll support whatever’s good for business.
The term “human rights” is used as a weapon by the ruling class to
justify actions in their own interests. By selectively showing concern
for human rights our rulers justify in one case starting a war and in
another making peace with a tyrant.
The rulers of the world will continue to act in their own interests,
irrespective of the consequences for others, or appeals for human rights
to be respected. It’s time the rest of us started to act in our own
interests.

---

HAPPY NEW YEAR

The seasonal festivities are now over and it's time to cope with the
hangover. OK, this time of the year is a time for celebrations. Let’s
face it our lives can be pretty crap all the year through but in the
dark months we need to brighten up our lives.
But of course there’s a payback. With credit card firms screwing what
they can with extortionate interest rates you can guess who had the best
Xmas. Loan organisations like the Provident charge even more. So, we'll
be paying for our holiday fun for months to come.
Now you are back at work, the boring emptiness and stress of everyday
life are all back in force. After we have battled to get to work on
over-crowded and over-priced public transport we face all sorts of
controls over our lives when we’re at work. But the pay is not good and
the boss is worse. However, do not despair. We can find ways to take our
lives back. Instead of work controlling us, it is time for us to take
our lives back. There are countless ways o f slowing down and sabotaging
the work/slave system. It just takes a little imagination, that's all.
So, our new year's message is clear. Fight back against the countless
little dictators who govern so many aspects of our lives. Demand more of
the things we really need like friendship, community and freedom. Reject
what we don't need, endless, pointless toil. The year is new and so is
our determination to fight back.
See inside for more examples of people fighting back.

---

ON THE FRONTLINE


Christmas has done nothing to dampen workplace resistance.
The first strike by refuse collectors in Scotland for more than a decade
meant the waste of thousands of households and businesses was not
collected on 10th Dec. More than 150 members of the GMB in North
Lanarkshire Council's cleansing department refused to work in the first
24 hours of a two-day stoppage.
Workers at a Stoke-on-Trent security company staged a wildcat strike
mid-December in a dispute over pay. Staff at Security Plus’ Hanley depot
staged the unofficial action after bosses at the Uttoxeter-based company
turned down pleas for a pay rise. The employees, who all work in the
packing department at the Samson Street depot, said they were angry
because drivers at the company had already received a wage increase.
Staff working at the plush headquarters of one of Britain’s most
powerful unions are threatening to walk out over alleged harassment and
bullying by the organisation’s new leader. Emplo yees at ASLEF, the
train drivers’ union, based in Hampstead, London, have decided to hold a
strike ballot in protest at the allegedly authoritarian regime
introduced by Shaun Brady, the recently elected general secretary.
Workers at Land Rover are to ban overtime as part of industrial action
in a dispute over pay, it was announced. But union leaders pulled back
from calling workers at the company’s plant in Solihull out on strike
even though they voted in favour of stoppages. Which side are they on?
Hundreds of school pupils staged a walkout in Colchester at St. Helena
school where they rose up in revolt. Around 300 school kids walked out
of lessons, demonstrated, ran amok and caused general mayhem. The
protests have been a reaction to plans by the school to split up classes
(and class mates) into divided houses. The shouts of “strike, strike,
strike” and “we will not be moved” were heard as kids rushed round their
teachers who helplessly looked on and tried to gain so me sort of
command of them. Burning school ties and blocking the road the
protesters were not going to be moved and were learning strategy and
tactics as they marched, blockaded and sang.
More from: www.prol-position.net <http://www.prol-position.net>

---

Anarchist Federation members in Hereford are trying to set up a local AF
group there. Anyone interested should contact Hereford AF, c/o PO Box 7,
Pontypool, Gwent, NP4 8YB or Email hereford@afed.cjb.net
<mailto:hereford@afed.cjb.net>

--

CELEBRITY PRAT OF THE MONTH

“Not…peasantry but professionals and business people” stand to benefit
from a Stanstead upgrade. “Airports are the cities of the future” so
says Germaine Greer.
As if suited types are somehow of more importance than rural working
class communities when these decisions are taken. Greer’s radical
feminism was always mostly self-serving anyway. She did little for women
who didn’t enjoy her own arty-farty middle class values. Greer
persistently feigned lip service to limp shades of socialism whilst
living the life of a grand dame luxuriating in the comforts of an
ancient Essex farmhouse. Her home is situated on the outer fringes of
the area designated to suffer most from the increase in jet noise if the
Stanstead expansion goes ahead as she advocates. Her brand of feminist
ideology was flawed by the vitriolic anti-maleness she employed in ‘90s
work like “The Change”. Who is Greer speaking for now?
True to form, typical of her class, Greer comes out in favour of
hard-nose d strategists, greedy profit makers of the Global Airline and
Airport industry, propped up by the government of the day. What do the
likes of Greer care, that 3000 acres of recreational unspoilt
countryside are up for development and that up to 200 planes will take
off once Stanstead is made into one of the worlds largest airports? Do
working class people (peasants the arch-feminist calls us) need this
expansion? Whose interest rates does it best serve? That’s right,
lukewarm, red professor Greer obligingly parades her influence as a
celebrity alongside the destroying infrastructures of capitalism. Some
socialism! Some prat!

---

TRANSPORT

Unless you are obscenely rich you will likely be familiar with the
rigmarole that is public transport. You won’t need us to tell you about
the cost, the never-ending delays and cancellations, the dirty
conditions of carriages/busses and even the injuries caused by neglected
states of service
However for many of us we see using these expensive, uncomfortable
services as a necessary evil. After all, in the current society we often
have little choice but to spend eight hours a day cooped up engaged in
often pointless work. To reach our oh-so exciting workplaces we need to
travel. For those of us without cars or where we have little option but
to be squeezed in to public transport, “tighter than cattle” – this
isn’t just the opinion of a bunch of pissed off anarchists, these are
the words of a recent Parliamentary report on public transport in the
UK. By the time we get to work we are unsurprisingly knackered, let
alone by the time we get home!
It isn’t all negative thou gh. There are numerous instances of people
not taking this bad situation lying down. Fare Evasion is described as
“common” with a link between bad service and refusal to pay, and with
the fines relatively low it is often cheaper not to pay and risk a low
fine.
Of course the bosses and their lackeys will moan, but us here at
resistance we can’t help but notice that not paying for crap services
eases the strain on our finances.
Over the summer on one very delayed train on route to Glasgow the
passengers on the train united and showed how powerful they could be
collectively. They took over the train and the nearby tracks and refused
to move until they were given alternative forms of transport and
compensation!
In Sweden and Paris striking transport workers have adopted novel
tactics –tactics our often striking transport workers could well benefit
from learning. Instead of shutting down public transport they instead
open up all gates and refuse to charge for trav el!
Transport workers certainly wouldn’t have to worry about public support
and situations like this give brief glimpses of how much better society
would be if it was run for collective needs, not the greed of a few.

---

WORKING CLASS RESISTANCE!

A new Irish anarchist organisation has formed and published a new
publication.

Working Class Resistance (WCR!) is a new eight page anarchist paper
which will be appearing six times a year from this point on. The next
edition will be ready by early February 2004.
Who are involved with ‘Working Class Resistance’? The appearance of this
publication marks the coming together of the Anarcho-Syndicalist
Federation, Anarchist Federation (Ireland), Anarchist Prisoner Support
and a number of other individuals to create a more effective and better
resourced class struggle anarchist organisation across Ireland. Together
they have created a new organisation, Organise!, with local groups and
individual members throughout the country.

Some background
The ASF and AF in Ireland had already collaborated on two previous
publications, called Wildcat, which presented agreed positions on the
trades unions and the “north”. The impetus for the creation of this
organisation goes back to a proposal made earlier this year asking
anarchists to look seriously at building more effective organisation
across Ireland. The response to this proposal was mixed, but discussion
on moving things forward took place between those who were most
interested in pursuing it and who felt they had most in common. Their
attitude to those class struggle anarchists outside their organisation
is comradely and co-operative; while we may have differences, we seek to
work to overcome these where possible and to build stronger links and
more effect methods of working together as part of the process of
building a broad libertarian movement in Ireland. They will not, on the
other hand, shy away from debate and discussion of differences, but a
ttempt to deal with these in an open and comradely fashion.
Most importantly, they seek through their activity and propaganda,
through discussion and practical solidarity with their fellow workers,
to show the relevance of anarchist methods of organising and ultimately
the benefits of a future libertarian communist revolution for workers
everywhere.
A new website should be online in the very near future.
If you would like more information, to get in touch with Organise!
members , or distribute WCR!, contact them at:
ORGANISE!, PO BOX 505, BELFAST, BT12 6BQ.
Email: organiseireland@yahoo.ie <mailto:organiseireland@yahoo.ie>

---

FASCISTS FLEE

On 9th December, two fascists from the BNP were spotted door-to-door
leafleting in Dorking, Surrey. Two angry residents quickly confronted
one of the BNP pair, who weren’t local, in the street. He quickly walked
off towards some nearby flats where the second man was. An aggressive
verbal exchange took place. The fascists quickly left the area heading
towards the other side of town, but after a third resident joined the
other two, they decided that they would go and give the BNP some more grief.
They soon spotted the pair in nearby roads. Having seen the residents
coming towards them the fascists fled into a side road – a dead end. The
locals waited at the entrance of the road until one of them went to see
where the leafleters had gone and found them, hiding behind a large
hedge, where they had been for over half an hour. Then having realised
that their hiding place had been found they began making frantic phone
calls and concerned that the fascists had called the cops, the residents
headed home leaving the pair behind the hedge. It doesn’t take much to
get the fascists running scared.
Info from: www.surreyanarchy.org.uk <http://www.surreyanarchy.org.uk>

---

DESERTERS IN THE DESERT

Plans to deploy the first battalion of Iraq’s new army are in doubt
because a third of the soldiers trained by the US led forces have quit.
Touted as a key to Iraq’s future, the 700 man battalion lost over 250
men over recent weeks as it prepared to begin operations.
Pay of just £40 a month and fear of violence from Iraqis fighting the
occupying armies are thought to be to blame.

US soldiers deserting too
And it’s not just Iraqis that are deserting. According to a French
weekly magazine over 1700 U.S. soldiers have deserted their posts in
Iraq, with many of them failing to return to military duty after getting
permission to go back to the United States.
The magazine says the French intelligence agency obtained the
information from what it described an “American colleague.” Citing a
senior French official posted in Washington, the magazine also said that
7,000 U.S. soldiers have left Iraq allegedly due to psychological
troubles and other illnesses. Some 2,200 others sustained serious
injuries including the loss of limbs, it said.

---

TIME BOMB

“Ya Basta” (Enough is Enough) declared the EZLN (Zapatista National
Liberation Army), as they burst to international attention ten years
ago, New Years day 1994.
The rebellion started in San Cristobal de las Casas, Chiapas, Mexico in
the tradition of all peasant armies: ransacking town halls and burning
land deeds! Destroying 10 government offices, freeing 179 prisoners,
then attacking an army garrison, and in one town shooting down an army
helicopter, and torching the town hall before quietly slipping back into
the jungle. The timing for the international “audience” was crucial,
coinciding with the controversial introduction of the North American
Free Trade Agreement.
It didn’t take long for the state to respond, on January 4th ten towns
near San Cristobal were bombed, 400 people died. On the 5th tanks
arrived in the area along with more troops, yet more died. The
government began to distribute black propaganda, and prevent human
rights organizations enterin g Chiapas. The EZLN then withdrew to the
jungle, and a tense ceasefire began on January 12th. Since then the
Mexican army has been using a tactic of low intensity warfare (killing
and displacing civilians), which continues to this day.
The Zapatistas have organised international “ecuentros” attracting
thousands of people from around the world which have been influential on
the global anti-capitalist movement.
The Zapatista uprising has allowed over 1100 communities in Chiapas of
300-400 people to organize federally into 32 autonomous municipalities
where power lies at the base. Local decisions are taken at a local level
and important decisions are made at a wider regional or municipal level,
discussions continuing until something like consensus is reached. In
these areas the people have much more control over their lives than
before and women can play a much bigger role than traditional society
allowed.
On the negative side the EZLN is hierarchically organized with officers
of different ranks and high profile leaders. Their stated aim is a
programme offering little more than liberal capitalism and it’s even
backed up by appeals to the Mexican constitution.
Nevertheless, the struggle of the peasants in Chiapas has been
inspirational to many people around the world. On this the tenth
anniversary of the Zapatista uprising the people producig resistance
send our solidarity to all those struggling for freedom and equality in
Chiapas.

---

INSIDE INFORMATION

Prisoners Support Email List
Not being aware of any anarchist mailing list in Ireland or Yorkshire
concerned with Prisoners, Prisons and related areas, Dublin and Hull
Anarchist Prisoner Support has decided to try and create some sort of
place where information of this type can be exchanged. It has thus
created the lumpenlist@anarchistps.org
<mailto:lumpenlist@anarchistps.org>.
They see no reason to keep this discussion limited to political or POW’s
and would encourage posting & debate about all categories of prisoners
and prisons.
To subscribe to the list send an Email with the text “subscribe
lumpenlist” to majordomo@anarchistps.org
<mailto:majordomo@anarchistps.org>
Email:
anarprisonersupp@hotmail.com <mailto:anarprisonersupp@hotmail.com>
Visit: www.anarchistps.org <http://www.anarchistps.org>

Anarchists Arrested in Italy
During the early morning of the 3rd of December a furious man-hunt led
to the arrest of an anarchist comrade after many searches throughout
Rome and its surroundings. Marco, the arrested comrade, is accused to be
one of the two people who, together with Massimo (who was arrested in
October) had rightly beaten the police infiltrator inside the demo
against the intergovernment conference of the EU on the 4th of October.
A picture, taken by one of those informers who populate demos, has been
enough to cause the arrest of both Massimo and Marco. Write to them at:
Marco Ferruzzi c.c. Regina Coeli via della lungara, 28 00165 Roma Italy
and Massimo Leonardi c.c. Rebibbia via R.Majetti, 165 00156 Roma Italy.

Prisoner of War Against War Needs Our Solidarity!
Write to a prisoner today! Sue Brackenbury is on remand in HMP Eastwood
Park - having climbed one wall and cut one fence too many, at UK nuclear
establishments. She has five trials in the pipeline - most of them in
magistrates’ courts - and one in Plymouth, in the Crown Court ( “Going
equipped” = Looking for a submarine with a hammer, at Devonport nuclear
dockyard) .
Sue would LOVE to hear from people. Her address is:
Sue Brackenbury HT 6792, HMP Eastwood Park, Wotton-under-Edge, Falfield,
Gloucestershire, GL12 8DB.
She can also receive ( and would love to have) CDs, and stamps. If you
wish to further show your solidarity with Sue, why not arrange to visit
her? If you wish to do so, Emai:l nabataat@yahoo.co.uk
<mailto:nabataat@yahoo.co.uk> to sort it out.

Freedom for Michel Gaucher!
Anti-capitalist militant Michel Gaucher is currently illegally
imprisoned in Portugal.
The Comité de Libertacão de Michel Gaucher is calling for solidarity in
the fight against the abuse of power and law, committed by the
authorities of France, Germany, Portugal and the European Union by
detention and ill-treatment of MG.
You can write to him at:
Michel Gaucher, E.P.L., Rua Marques de la Fronteira 1, Lisboa, Portugal
Visit: www.geocities.com/freemichaelg
<http://www.geocities.com/freemichaelg>
Email: freemichaelg@yahoo.com <mailto:freemichaelg@yahoo.com>

---

Subvert and resist

Take precautions when going on demonstrations and don’t take cameras,
booze or drugs. If you’re nicked give your name and address then say ‘no
comment’ to any other questions.

JANUARY: 5th – London Earth First! is holding an open discussion on the
plans for a new runway in the South East and how we can fight it. 7pm,
Autonomy Club, Freedom Bookshop, 84B Whitechapel High Street, London E1 7QX.
17-18th – Reclaim the bases weekend of anti-militarist action. . Start
organising an event at a base close to you. Networking via:
www.reclaimthebases.org.uk <http://www.reclaimthebases.org.uk>
reclaimbases-discuss@yahoogroups.com
<mailto:reclaimbases-discuss@yahoogroups.com>
17th – From World War II...to Iraq 2003...to...? A Bloody History of
Northwood HQ, Assemble at 12pm Northwood tube, Or 11am Baker St exit of
Baker St tube. Northwood is where the UK Permanent Joint Forces HQ are
based. Contact: info@thed10group.org.uk <mailto:info@thed10group.org.uk>
www.thed10group.org.uk <http://www.thed10group.org.uk> 07887 585721
18th – Disarm DSEi 2005 Open Meeting. To target Spearhead the company
who orga nize Europe’s biggest arms fair. 2pm, London Action Resource
Centre, Fieldgate Street, London. www.dsei.org <http://www.dsei.org>
18th – Open Meeting to Plan for Mayday 2004. 2-5pm, London Action
Resource Centre, 62 Fieldgate Street, London. Visit:
www.ourmayday.org.uk <http://www.ourmayday.org.uk>
22nd – Discussion meeting on workplace struggles. Organised by London AF
and other anarchists. 7pm, Autonomy Club, Freedom Bookshop, 84B
Whitechapel High Street, London E1 7QX.

---

Join the resistance

The Anarchist Federation is an organisation of class struggle anarchists
aiming to
abolish capitalism and all oppression to
create a free and equal society. This is
Anarchist Communism.
We see today’s society as being divided into two main opposing classes:
the ruling class which controls all the power and wealth, and the
working class which the rulers exploit to maintain this. By racism,
sexism and other forms of oppression, as well as war and environmental
destruction the rulers weaken and divide us. Only the direct action of
working class people can defeat these attacks and ultimately overthrow
capitalism.
As the capitalist system rules the whole world, its destruction must be
complete and world wide. We reject attempts to reform it, such as
working through parliament and
national liberation movements, as they fail to challenge capitalism
itself. Unions also work as a part of the capitalist system, so although
workers struggle within them they wi ll be unable to bring about
capitalism’s destruction unless they go beyond these limits.
Organisation is vital if we’re to beat
the bosses, so we work for a united
anarchist movement and are affiliated to the International of Anarchist
Federations.
The Anarchist Federation has members across Britain and Ireland fighting
for the kind of world outlined above. Contact us at:

Anarchist Federation,
84B, Whitechapel High Street,
London, E1 7QX. Tel: 07946 214 590
Visit: http://www.afed.org.uk
Email: anarchistfederation@bigfoot.com
<mailto:anarchistfederation@bigfoot.com>


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