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(en) Ireland, Derry, Report of Anarchism Not Chaos mini-festival

Date Mon, 02 Oct 2006 16:54:27 +0200


Saturday 30th of September saw Derry's Dunlgoe bar play host to
a day of anarchist talks, films and music hosted by the Workers
Solidarity Movement. The event which was organised by a local
Derry WSM member saw people from Dublin, Switzerland, Copenhagen
and Belfast as well as locals gather to discuss anarchist ideas.
Gregor Kerr, Secretary of the Federation of Dublin Anti-Water
Charge Campaigns, kicked things off with a discussion on how the
water charges were defeated in the Republic and the role anarchists
played in that struggle. The current campaign in the North to defeat
the tap tax was discussed with updates on the campaign provided by
a comrade from the Belfast anarchist group Organise! and Eamonn
McCann of the SWP. Julia Doherty of the wsm then gave an
introductory talk on Anarchism covering history, theory and practice
and a lively debate ensued over violence, white-male dominance of
anarchism and republicanism.

Stalls by Just Books, WSM and Mujeres Libres Derry were on hand
stocking everything from pamphlets and books to flags and t-shirts.
The mujeres libres had the most creative stall offering t-shirts
commemorating free Derry, the Paris commune, Spain 1936 and the
limerick soviet as "temporary autonomous zones" with cool front
and back logos.

Ramor Ryan, author of "Clandestines: The Pirate Journals of an
Irish Exile" gave a reading of his book to a packed upstairs room
with a discussion afterwards. The book covers his life from the
squats of west-Berlin to Chiapas via a number of hairy and exciting
situations, well worth checking out when it's launched in Dublin this
Thursday.

A Swiss comrade put on a "comedy" show about police violence
which was very informative and gruesome although I didn't really
see the comedy aspect. The dangers of baton rounds, tear gas and
other "less lethal" weapons were explained and the gory reality of the
damage these weapons cause was project on a six foot screen. The
message was all the more relevant in Derry where many of these
weapons are still in use.

A benefit gig for Belfast's Just Books collective finished off the night
with Anti-State and Tin Pot Operation playing to a packed out bar.
Hundreds of stickers and anarchist papers were distributed to the
crowd as well as leaflets detailing the Justice for Terrence Wheelock
campaign.

This was the WSM’s second public event in Derry and the
positive reaction we received from many people attending was
encouraging. Although anarchism is still a very small political
current in Ireland it is currently growing and chaotic cities like Derry
need a strong, organised and united working class to get beyond the
dead end of both republican and loyalist ideas.
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