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(en) US, BAAM* Boston's 4rd Monthly Newsletter II. (2/2)

Date Tue, 27 Nov 2007 14:27:00 +0200


Greek Anarchists Protest Prisons, Continuing Struggle for Freedom by Jake Carman

On November 5th, thousands of Greek anarchists protested outside prisons in 8 different cities simultaneously. In Athens, police attacked a gathering of over 1000, resulting in a street battle with rocks and tear gas. Protests also occurred in Thessaloniki, Patra, Heraklion Crete, Larisa, Volos, Ioannina and Komotini, calling for the abolition of prisons among other demands. --- This month's protests follow a string of prison uprisings last April, triggered by the beating of anarchist prisoner Giannis Dimitrakis. The revolt began in Malandrino prison, and soon spread to at least 11 other prisons, where prisoners, fed up with poor living conditions, frequent discipline and transfers, rose up not just against their guards but the notion of prisons themselves.

"All wards are now under our control," Giannis Dimitrakis told
the Athens daily `Eleftherotipia'. In prisons across the country,
hundreds escaped their cells and gathered on prison rooftops,
demanding, according to Athens Indymedia, "the abolition of
disciplinary measures, the conversion of life to twelve-year sen-
tences, regular leaves for all, release after spending 3/7 of the
sentence and the conversion of 25-year sentences to 10 years."
The anarchist movement in Greece is one of the oldest
and strongest in the world, with a long tradition of insurrection-
ary struggle that manifests in frequent attacks on police stations,
banks, and government buildings, very rarely resulting in arrests.
--------------------------------------------

In Case You Weren't Convinced That Capitalism Is Bad By Adrienne
November 10th, in Chongqing in Southwest China, 3 peo-
ple were killed and 31 were injured during a stampede. That's awful,
yes? But why were they stampeding? Were they trying to escape a
fire? Was it an athletic event? Why were these people crushing each
other, you ask. Well, readers, you will be grieved to learn that 3 peo-
ple were killed and 31 were injured trying to get into a supermarket
with a time-limited sale on cooking oil. Just let that sink in for a
moment. 3 people were killed and 31 were injured over cooking oil.
In present day U.S., we have yet to understand, let alone
witness, the kind of widespread poverty and the accompanying
desperation that causes people to trample upon their fellow humans
to get a discount on food items. While food prices are generally on
the rise, China is especially feeling the pinch, being saddled with
a 17.6% increase from last year. This seems a good time to point
out that the earth is not stricken with a food shortage crisis, mere-
ly a distribution crisis. The current production of food is enough
to give every man, woman, child and genderqueer individual 4.3
pounds of food every day. So why do we have dumpsters filled
with fresh, edible food while hundreds of millions of people starve
around the globe? That's a good question. Let's ask the capitalists.
--------------------------------------------

A New World in Our Streets Meditations on Fascism in Spain by Autumn

When most people hear fascism, especially in its rela-
tion to Europe, they generally think of Adolph Hitler or Benito
Mussolini. History textbooks conjure up images from World War
Two: D-Day, the capture of France, even the Warsaw Ghetto up-
rising. But what of the Iberian Peninsula? Given recent events
in Spain it is necessary to revisit the Spanish Civil War, the re-
sistance to Franco's dictatorship, and how it all relates to now.
Starting with the summer of 1936, Spain was in the
grips of an all-out civil war. What the far-right nationalists had
intended as a simple coup d'etat had exploded into a scramble for
control of Spain. The loyalists, who supported the leftist/socialist
regime currently in charge of the Spanish government, and those
proposing a deeper social revolution like the anarchist worker's
union the CNT (National Confederation of Workers), were on
one side. They comprised a popular front of socialists, com-
munists, liberals, republicans, and anarchists. On the other side
were the so-called "rebels" looking to re-conquer Spain and turn
it into a nationalist dictatorship, backed by the Catholic Church.
The war itself raged on for three years, resulting in a
victory for the nationalists led by General Francisco Franco.
Franco's regime lasted until the mid-1970s and until just recently
had not gained official recognition as a brutal dictatorship. My
father, who grew up in Franco's Spain, often said that the time
period was looked upon briefly and as a "necessary step" in the
evolution of a modern Spanish state. After all, fascism brings
order to a country like nothing else. "Whose order?" is cer-
tainly a topic of discussion. George Orwell talks of the horrific
anarchy in his account of the Civil War, Homage to Catalonia:
Practically every building of any size had been seized
by the workers and was draped with red flags or with
the red-and-black flag of the Anarchists; every
wall was scrawled with hammer and sickle and with the
initials of the revolutionary parties; almost every
church had been gutted and its images burnt. ... Every
shop and cafe had an inscription saying that it had been
collectivized; even the bootblacks had been collectivized
and their boxes painted red and black. Waiters and shop-
walkers looked you in the face and treated you as an
equal. Ser vile and even ceremonial forms of speech had
temporarily disappeared.
Horrific chaos indeed! One can easily see how this situation
would need remedy, and why groups such as "National De-
mocracy" (a fascist front group) would fight so hard to pre-
vent the anarchy of Catalonia from ever occurring again.
This month, an already turbulent time for Spain given it marks
the death of Franco (November 20th, 1975), a clash between one
fascist and a group of anti-fascist activists came about on the heels
of an official declaration by the Spanish government denouncing
Franco's reign of terror. As of now, Spain's president hopes to take
down any statues that commemorate the former dictator. Of course,
the government still continues to grant legitimacy to fascist groups
and permits them to celebrate the lives of nationalist soldiers from
the Civil War. The fight broke out on November 11, right before
an anti-immigration rally organized by National Democracy. A
small handful of anti-fascist activists spotted Josué Estébanez de
la Hija, an off-duty soldier for the Spanish armed forces, sporting
a neo-Nazi symbol. After a brief verbal exchange, Estébanez de
la Hija pulled out a knife and fatally stabbed Carlos Javier in the
heart. This incident brought outrage from the anti-fascist commu-
nity. From Barcelona to Madrid riots have broken out, resulting in
arrests of activists and police injuries. On November 12th in San
Sebastian, thousands of antifascists--including elderly veterans
of the Spanish Civil War--built barricades and fought the police
forcing 8 busloads of fascists to turn back and hold their rally in a
supermarket parking lot instead of the center of town. To be frank,
it's about time fascists started to see this kind of resistance here in
the United States as well. We cannot expect the State to give us
aid -- they gave none to the loyalists in 1936, despite the so-called
"Good War" to end right-wing nationalism and brutality the world
over. If we truly wish to end the wave of fascism that is sweep-
ing through society today, we must build the new world in our
hearts now and be prepared to defend it with everything we've got.
Sources: http://slackbastard.anarchobase.com/?p=939
http://www.infoshop.org/inews/article.php?story=20071120084
512457 http://www.expatica.com/actual/article.asp?subchannel_
id=81&story_id=46097 http://www.kaosenlared.net/noticia.php?id_
noticia=44742 http://www.infoshop.org/inews/article.php?story=200
71115133903498 http://www.infoshop.org/inews/article.php?story=2
0071015050822238 http://www.indymedia.nl/nl/2007/11/48329.sht-
ml http://www.guardian.co.uk/international/story/0,,2213063,00.html
Antifacists line up against police at a Novem-
ber 19th protest of the fascist murder of 16 year
old Carlos Javier. A riot ensued, with 10 officers
injuried. http://bombsandshields.blogspot.com/

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

Gay Liberationist Massimo Consoli Dies at age 61 by Jake Carman

On November 4th, famed gay Italian anarchist Massimo
Consoli, 61, succumbed to cancer. A gay rights activist, historian,
teacher, theorist, and writer, responsible for 40 books including
"Andata & Ritorno," (2003)--an autobiography--and "Homo-
caust," (1984)--a historical work about Nazi crimes against gays,
Consoli is credited with founding the modern Italian gay movement.
In 1963, Consoli started the organization La Rivoluzione
à Verde (The Revolution is Green), and in 1966 the Associazione
Culturale Roma-1. According to a November 8th article in Gay City
News by Doug Ireland, "The name `Roma-1' did not refer to Italy's
capital city, but was a secret acronym for Rivolta Omosessuale dei
Maschi Anarchici - Prima fase (Homosexual Revolt of Male Anar-
chists - First phase)." He quickly gained the attention of the Catho-
lic Church and the Italian Counter-Espionage Service, (Servizio
Informazioni Difesa), and he moved to the Netherlands in 1969,
where he published the "Manifesto per la Rivoluzione Morale:
l'Omosessualità Rivoluzionaria" ("Manifesto for the Moral Revo-
lution: Revolutionary Homosexuality") in 1971. This document
circulated widely in Italy, spurring the creation of numerous orga-
nizations, and marking the beginning of the Italian gay movement.
A dedicated organizer his whole life, Consoli started the
paper Gay News Rome in 1982. He also maintained a website (in
Italian) up until his death: www.cybercore.com/consoli/. He was
remembered at his funeral by gay Italian Parliament member,
Franco Grillini, who said, "Massimo told with energy and pas-
sion...the reality of gay and lesbian life both in Italy and inter-
nationally, and its history. He has been a tireless promoter of the
spread of gay culture in Italy. The death of Consoli, with his ex-
ample of vision and courage, is a serious loss for the Italian LGBT
movement and the culture of our country. We promise that we will
carry on the many works of Massimo which remained unfinished."

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

Reportback: Fifth Assembly of the Northeast Anarchist Network.

On November 17th and 18th, 80-100 anarchists gathered
at Hampshire College in Western Massachusetts for the fifth As-
sembly of the Northeast Anarchist Network (NEAN). This Assem-
bly was an overwhelming success. With nine organizations from
Pittsburgh to Portland (Maine) and Syracuse to Cape Cod now of-
ficially affiliated with the NEAN, the Network structure is up and
running. Participants solidified the Network's committees, such as
Internal Communications, Legal Defense, Education/Outreach, and
Website, and developed campaigns and projects.
The Network has a lot on its plate for this winter. The New England
Subregional of NEAN will hold its second Assembly in Portland,
Maine, January 12th and 13th. Check the calendar on page 8 of this
issue for details. NEAN plans to meet with the Midwest Action Net-
work in February, hold a meeting at this year's National Conference
of Organized Resistance, and also organize against bourgeois elec-
toral politics on two fronts: with an anti-election campaign aimed
at discrediting representative democracy and promoting direct de-
mocracy/anarchy, and by organizing and educating for, as well as
directly participating in, anti DNC/RNC protests this com-
ing summer. The Assembly set up a Newspaper working
group, which will publish its first quarterly paper in Febru-
ary. They also set up a working group to make a list of all
NEAN skill-shares and workshops. This list will soon be up
on our website so that groups in the region can "order" skill-
shares such as "Know Your Rights," "Medic Training," etc.
This Assembly benefited from the momentum coming off
last month's anarchist victory in Georgetown, DC (see Octo-
ber Issue of BAAM), and the impressive rise of Northeast An-
archism in general. This winter promises to be an exciting one.
Learn more about NEAN at NeAnarchist.net.
the northeast anarchist network
--------------------------------------------

Unmanned Car Ravaging Through the Desert by Alex

A Land rover careens through the desert, top-heavy
with a half-million dollars of video cameras, radar, and la-
ser rangefinders. No hands are needed to touch the steer-
ing wheel as the vehicle merges into traffic. Sensors whir-
ring and focusing, the car picks up speed- with nobody driving.
November 3rd saw eleven self-controlled robotic vehicles
hit the road at an empty airport for the 2007 Urban Challenge, a
contest funded by the Defense Research Projects Agency (DAR-
PA) to push development on robotic war machines. But for the
MIT team, which placed fourth in the competition, mounting a ma-
chine gun turret atop their modified Land Rover LR3 didn't seem
to be a high priority. "To have a robot that can drive in traffic ­ that
just captured our imagination," says John Leonard, Professor of
Mechanical Engineering, speaking as the team's leader. Over the
last sixteen months, a 30-person team of faculty and students from
MIT, WPI, Wellesley College, and Olin College have been collab-
orating on the project, funded by a grant from DARPA and fueled
by a zealous wish to see a robotic car driving. Says Dr. Leonard,
"This is an impossible challenge; that's why we were drawn to it."
But this isn't an innocent science fair project. The Urban
Challenge competition was created explicitly to create technol-
ogy for sending robotic vehicles into war zones, allowing the U.S.
military to pursue riskier and more dangerous military operations
around the globe. Cargo-carrying vehicles such as these are just
one aspect of the "Future Combat Systems" project, which hopes
to see 46 new technologies rolled out into the battlefield by 2015.
The cost to the American taxpayer? $160.7 billion, a price that will
be bumped up further as more delays and cost overruns get filed.
Even though putting a robot at the steering wheel might
save a few soldiers, programs like this keep bumping up the
country's defense budgets, to the highest levels since the cold
war ended. While international peacekeeping forces and hu-
manitarian efforts are seeing their budgets cut, unilateral defense
spending is going up yearly- sucking 21 to 51 cents out of ev-
ery dollar paid into income tax (depending on accounting meth-
ods). Add that discretionary spending to the price tag for veter-
ans' services, and even the most conservative economists are left
shuddering at the prospect of higher taxes and a devalued dollar.
While DARPA scrambles to raise funds for truly mili-
tarized robotic vehicles, the MIT team's vehicle, Talos, is once
again on the sidelines as the team members steam forwards with
other projects. Of the school's $1.1 billion federal research bud-
get, $677 million comes from the department of defense ­ mak-
ing it good betting that the brightest minds in engineering will
be seeing their creations sent to the battlefield in the years ahead.
Team member Troy Jones smiles as he thinks about the
prospects of the technology that he's developed, looking to see it
deployed in consumer cars in the near future. But while his atten-
tion has moved on to the next exciting challenge, the Department of
Defense is working just as purposefully to see that his ideas next see
life in the cockpit of a hummer, running convoys in the dust of Iraq.
Wachovia, AXA, Rathbone Drop
--------------------------------------------

Huntingdon Life Sciences Shares By Boston Animal Defense League

Another campaign win against notorious commercial
animal testing lab, Huntingdon Life Sciences, leaves the lab with
197,218 dumped shares: HLS is much closer to closing. Global
AXA Group was HLS' 2nd largest shareholder, with 84,618,
and number one supporter Wachovia dropped 92,600. After one
demonstration, Rathbone threw out their 20,000 shares. Help is
needed to wake up the rest of the shareholders, suppliers, and cus-
tomers to bring HLS to financial bankruptcy to match its moral
bankruptcy. To get involved locally, check out www.boston.an-
imaldefense.info, and nationally, check out www.closehls.net

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

A lesson in Radical Carols! Frosty The Snowman by Jamie and Alexander

Frosty the Snowman, was a jolly happy soul,
With a can of beer and all black clothes, and a flag on a wooden pole.
Frosty the Snowman, is an anarchist, they say.
Capitalism may grow, but the children know that they'll be free
one day.
There must have been some magic in that smashing
window sound,
cause people started using their heads, and capitalism soon fell down!
Oh, Frosty, the Snowman, was alive as he could be;
and the children say we'll smash capital today,
just the same as you and me.
Smashity, smash, smash, Smashity, smash, smash,
look at capitalism go.
Smashity, smash, smash, Smashity, smash, smash
We will overthrow.
Frosty the Snowman, knew that liberation was here to stay,
so he said, "Let's run, and we'll have some fun and keep the
bosses far away."
Down to the village, with a black flag in his hand,
Running here and there, all around the square, sayin',
"Catch me if you can."
He led them down the streets of town, right to the traffic cop;
and only paused a moment, when he heard him holler, "Stop!"
But Frosty, the Snowman, kept going his own way,
And he raised his fist, sayin' "I won't stop cause I'm fuckin' here
to stay!'
Pick up your own book of Rad Carols at the Lucy Parsons Center
--------------------------------------------

Help us save trees! (paper and money)

For a free email subscription, contact Jake at trenchesfullofpoets@riseup.net

Contributors to this month's issue:
-Adrienne -Sacco +Vancetti Commem. Soceity
-Lydia T. -Clara Hendricks
-Hayduke -Sublett
-Jake Carman -Autum
-Laila M. -Boston Animal Defense League
Photographers
-Tom M.
-Jake Carman
-Robert Whitlock
Editors:
-John Cleary
-Clara Hendricks
-Jake Carman
-Rowan
-Patrick O'Meara
-www.BAAMBoston.org-

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

Calendar of events:
First Tuesday of every month: BAAM meeting,
7pm, Lucy Parsons Center 549 Columbus Ave (this month, Dec. 4)
Second Tuesday of every month:
Anarchist Black Cross (defense and prison abolition group), 8pm,
45 Mnt Aubrurn st, Cambridge, Ma (this month, Dec. 11th)
Second Sunday of every month:
Meeting of the Industrial Workers of the World. 2pm, Lucy Par-
sons Center 549 Columbus Ave (this month, Dec. 9th)
Every Friday Boston Common 4-6pm- Food Not
Bombs community meal rain or shine
UPCOMING EVENTS
November 27th: ABC Prisoner Support Night.
Help out by folding and mailing literature, responding to re-
quests, getting a penpal, doing research. Free vegan pizza!
7pm at the papercut zine library. 45 Mt. Auburn st., Cambridge
December 1st, 10am-5pm: Papercut yard sale followed
by a pop-punk papercut benefit show. 45 Mnt Auburn, Cambridge
11:30am: Sacco and Vanzetti Commemoration Society
Plaque Rededication ceremondy. 256 Hanover Street, North End.
1:30pm: Jericho Boston Presents: The Shootout, w/ Per-
formance artist, Jihad Abdul-Mumit: two-person performance and
workshop. Great Hall, Codman Square, Dorchester
December 2nd: International Day of Solidarity with
Political Prisoners Pannel. Encuentro 5. 2-6pm 33 Harrison Ave.,
Chinatown. Panel organized by Jericho Boston. Seakers include:
Ashanti Alston (ex Black Liberation Army Political Prisoner)
Edwin Cortes (former FALN Prisoner of War)
Jihad Abdul-Mumit (ex Black Liberation Army Political Prisoner)
Pam Africa (MOVE! Organization, ICFFMAJ)
Ward Churchill (American Indian Movement, Author)
December 9th: ABC Prisoner Support Night. 5pm Pa-
percut. potluck! Papercut zine library. 45 Mt.Auburn st., Cambridge
December 15th, 22nd and 23rd: BAAM Radical
Caroling. Join us on a tirp to the busy shopping centers of Boston
to sign anti-capitalist holiday songs. Location/time TBA. Check
BAAMBoston.org, or come to our monthly meeting for updates
January 12th-13th. The second New England Sub-
regional of the Northeast Anarchist Network (NEAN). Portland,
Maine. Meetings at 10:00 am ar the Meg Perry Center at 644 Con-
gress St. Contact Ani at stamand@riseup.net or (850) 502-7420.
Check www.NEanarchist.net
January 19th: Industrial Workers of the World In-
dustrial Union 460 benifit. Food, drinks and entertianment. Film:
"Hallelujah, I'm a Bum" with Al Jolson (83 mins). Musical perfor-
mances: Bill Bumpus, Jake and the Infernal Machine + more TBA.
6-10pm. Encuentro 5, 33 Harrison, Chinatown. Date is tentative,
email Bill at wbumpus62@comcast.net
January 21st-23rd: Unconventional Action Network
Consulta. Meeting for the NEAN and allies to plan resistance to the
Conventions. Binghamton, NY. Check NEanarchist.net for updates
February 16th-17th. Meeting between NEAN and the
Midwest Action Network. Pittsburg, PA. Check NEanarchist.net
"Anarchism does not mean bloodshed; it does
not mean robbery, arson, etc. These monstrosi-
ties are, on the contrary, the characteristic fea-
tures of capitalism. Anarchism means peace and
tranquility to all." --August Spies, Haymarket Martyr

=====================================
* BAAM is a general anarchist union in the Boston area
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