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(en) MEDIA, Hong Kong: Anarchists in the resistance against the "Law of Extradition" (ca)
Mon, 9 Sep 2019 08:47:26 +0300
It's been more than two months of almost continuous protests in Hong Kong. From the
resistance against the "Law of Extradition" to the requests for resignation of the head of
the Hong Kong executive Carrie Lam, all dotted with mass demonstrations, occupations of
government buildings and major clashes with police forces. With the intention of
approaching this conflict, we reproduce below an interview conducted by the CrimethInc
portal (and translated into Spanish by tarcoteca) to a local anarchist collective. The
interview is already a few weeks old, but its general analysis of the events makes it
essential to read. ---- Since 1997, when it ceased to be Britain's last major colonial
possession, Hong Kong has been part of the People's Republic of China, while maintaining a
distinct political and legal system. In February 2019, an unpopular bill was introduced
that would allow extraditing Hong Kong fugitives to countries with which the regional
government has no extradition agreements, including mainland China. On June 9, more than
one million people took to the streets in protest; on June 12, protesters clashed with
police; On June 16, two million people participated in one of the largest marches in the
history of the city[of 7.3 million inhabitants]. The following interview, with an
anarchist collective from Hong Kong, explores the context of this wave of riots.
In the United States, the most recent popular struggles have converged around resistance
to Donald Trump and the extreme right. In France, the Gilets Jaunes movement attracted
anarchists, leftists and far-right nationalists to the streets against the centrist
government of Macron; Already a fight between themselves . In Hong Kong, we see a social
movement that opposes a state ruled by the authoritarian left. What challenges do
opponents face capitalism and the state in this context? How can we overcome nationalists,
neo-liberals and pacifists who seek to control and exploit our movements?
As China extends its reach, competing with the United States and the European Union for
global hegemony, it is important to experiment with models of resistance against the
political model it represents, while taking care to prevent the neo-liberals and
reactionaries from capitalizing on the popular opposition to the authoritarian left.
Anarchists in Hong Kong are in a unique position to talk about this.
"The left" is institutionalist and ineffective in Hong Kong. In general, liberal "experts"
and right-wing "citizens" have absolute mastery of the narrative whenever protests erupt,
especially when China is involved.
In the fight against the "Extradition Law" project, has the escalation of tactics made it
difficult for these factions to represent or manage "the movement"? Has the revolt
exceeded or undermined its ability to shape the speech? Did the events of the past month
announce similar developments in the future, or has this been an issue already common in
popular discontent in Hong Kong?
We believe it is important for everyone to understand that, so far, what has happened
cannot be properly understood as "a movement." He is too immature for it. What I want to
say is that, unlike the so-called " Umbrella Movement ", which escaped the control of its
founding architects, the intellectuals who called "Occupy the Center with Love and Peace"
a year ago, to which they joined a majority with pacifist and civic principles that
delineated it, in this there is no real narrative guide that unifies the events that have
occurred so far, there is no foundational creed that authorizes or sanctifies certain
forms of action while outlawing others to create a spectacular cover that can be
photograph and relay to screens around the world.
The short answer to your question, then, is ... yes, so far, no one is allowed to speak on
behalf of the movement. Everyone struggles to reach an agreement with a nascent form of
subjectivity that is being set before us, now that the formal figures of the trends to
which they refer have been crushed and largely marginalized. That includes the "academic"
section of the students, until now known as " Demosisto ", and the "right-wing" nativists,
both disqualified from participating in the legislative council after being voted.
Throughout this interview, we will try to describe our own intuitions about what this
embryonic form of subjectivity looks like and the conditions from which it originates. But
these are only attempts. Whatever happens, we can say that it is born in a field in which
the visible and recognizable protagonists of previous sequences, including political
parties, student bodies, right-wing groups and populists, have been defeated or
discredited. It is a field sown with shadows, tormented by shadows, echoes and murmurs. As
of now, the center of the stage remains empty.
This means that the most common "default" modes of understanding are invoked to fill in
the gaps. Often, it seems that we are prepared for an unfortunate repetition of the
sequence that developed with the Umbrella Movement:
- Horrible police force deployment
- Public outrage manifests itself in great marches and subsequent occupations, organized
and understood as demonstrations of sanctified civic virtues.
- These occupations are ossified in tense, puritan and paranoid camps, obsessed with
political behavior to keep them in line with the prescribed script.
- The movement collapses, which leads to five years of disenchantment among young people
who lack the necessary understanding to understand that their failure to achieve universal
suffrage is something less than an abject defeat.
Of course, this is only a brief description of the Umbrella Movement five years ago, and
even then there was a considerable amount of "excesses": novel and emancipatory practices
and encounters that the official narrative could not explain. These experiences must be
recovered and recovered, although this is not the time or place for it. What we now face
is another mystification exercise, in which the protocols that come into operation each
time the social fabric enters a crisis can close the possibilities that are being opened.
However, it would be premature to suggest that it is about to happen.
In our brief and often extremely unpleasant publications of Western social networks of the
extreme left, we have noticed that, all too often, intelligence falls victim to our
inclination to dominate this or that struggle. Much of what goes through "comments" tends
to fall toward one of the two poles: passionate acclamation of the power of proletarian
intelligence or cynical denunciation of its populist recovery. None of us can stand the
suspense of having to suspend our judgment on something outside our knowledge, and we
hurry up wanting to find someone who can formalize this mass of information difficult to
handle in a rubric that we can understand and digest, in order to express our support or
We have no real answers for anyone who wants to know if they should worry more about what
is happening in Hong Kong instead of, for example, France, Algeria or Sudan. But we can
appeal to those who are interested in understanding what is happening and take the time to
develop an understanding about this city.
Although we do not fully share its policy and have some doubts with the facts presented in
it, we support any coverage of the events in Hong Kong that the Ultra, Nao and Chuang
media have offered over the years to the English-speaking world. Ultra's piece about the
Umbrella Movement[" Black versus Yellow ", Autonomous vs. Civic]is probably the one that
best counts the current events in development.
If we understand that "the left" is a political subject who places the questions of class
struggle and work at the center of his politics, it is not entirely true that such a thing
exists in Hong Kong. Of course, our friends have excellent blogs, there are small groups
and things like that. Certainly, everyone talks about the wealth gap, rampant poverty, the
capitalist class, the fact that we are all "?? ?" (workers, working people) struggling to
survive. But, as in almost any other place, the main form of subjectivity and
identification to which everyone subscribes is to the idea of citizenship in a national
community[Hong Kong]. It follows that this imagined belonging is based on the denial,
exclusion and demarcation of the continent.
It should interest foreign readers to know that the word "left" in Hong Kong has two
connotations. Obviously, for the generation of our parents and their parents before them,
"left" means communist. That is why "left" can refer to a businessman who is a member of
the Party, or a pro-establishment politician who is notoriously pro-Chinese. For younger
people, the word "left" is a stigma (often conjugated with "plastic", a Cantonese word
that sounds like "jerk") associated with a previous generation of activists who
participated in a previous period of social struggle , including struggles to prevent the
demolition of Queen's Ferry Pier in Central, against the construction of the high-speed
railway that crosses the northeast of Hong Kong to China and against the destruction of
vast tracts of farmland in the northeastern territories, all of which ended in
demoralizing defeats. These movements were often led by spokesman-puppets, artists or NGO
representatives who forged tactical alliances with progressives in such a pan-democratic
movement. The defeat of these movements, attributed to their reluctance to direct action
practices and their requests for patience and negotiation with the authority, is now
attributed to that generation of activists. All the anger and frustration of the young
people who came of age in that period, Paying attention to the direction of these figures
who ordered them to disperse when they witnessed another defeat, another exhibition of
orchestrated passivity, has taken a progressive turn to the right. Even the bodies of high
school and university students who have traditionally been center-left and progressive
have become explicitly nationalist.
A crucial principle of this generation, which arises from a series of disappointments and
failures, is the focus on direct action and the consequent rejection of "discussions in
petit commits," "consensus," and the like. This issue first appeared in the Umbrella
Movement, mainly in the Mong Kok camp , where the possibilities were richer, but where,
unfortunately, the right was also able to establish a firmer foothold.
Distrust in the previous generation continues to prevail. For example, on the afternoon of
June 12, in the middle of street fights between the police and the protesters, several
members of a veteran Social Democratic party were responsible for transmitting information
through a microphone to those in the front telling them where to retire if they needed to
escape, what holes in the fronts should be recomposed and similar information. Due to this
distrust in the parties, politicians, professional activists and their agendas, many
ignored these instructions and instead relied on word of mouth information or information
circulating in online messaging groups.
It is no exaggeration to say that the founding myth of this city is that refugees and
dissidents fled from communist persecution to build an oasis of wealth and freedom, a
fortress of civil liberties safeguarded by the rule of law. In view of that, at the
mundane level, one could say that many in Hong Kong already consider themselves rebels, in
the way they live and enjoy freedoms, and that they consider as identity, however empty
and tenuous it may be. , a property that must be defended at all costs. It should not be
necessary to say much here about the fact that much of the real ecological "wealth" that
constitutes this city, its most interesting neighborhoods (and often the poorest), a lot
of informal clubs, studios and homes located in industrial buildings, State and private
promoters have been ransacked, and farmland destroyed in the northeastern territories,
walled historic villages and rural districts piece by piece; before the outrageous
indifference of these outraged citizens.
In any case, if the liberals are able to display their Cold War language about the need to
defend civil liberties and human rights in the face of the red tide that invades us, and
the populist appeals of the right call to defend the integrity of our identity gain
ground, it is for these deeply rooted and quite banal historical reasons.
Considering the time of this fight, how it exploded when the images of the police who
mistreated and arrested young students became viral, we see the perfect repetition of the
prelude to the umbrella movement. This happened a week after the annual vigil
commemorating the dead in the Tiananmen Massacre on June 4, 1989, a date remembered in
Hong Kong as the day the tanks were called to crush the students who were peacefully
gathering in vindication of civil liberties. It is impossible to exaggerate the depth of
this wound, this trauma, in the formation of the popular psyche; this came to homes when
thousands of mothers met in public, in an almost perfect reflection of the Tiananmen
mothers, to publicly complain about the future of their missing children, done now
eclipsed by the shadow of the communist monolith. It is surprising to think that the
police, not once, but twice, violated the greatest of all taboos: open fire on young people.
In light of this, it would be naive to suggest that something significant has happened so
far as to suggest what to do to escape the "strangulation" of those you describe as
"liberal scholars" and the "right-wing" citizens who remain here in the narrative. Both
factions are simply symptoms of an underlying condition, aspects of an ideology that must
be attacked and disarmed in practice.
Perhaps we should address what is happening right now as a kind of public psychoanalysis,
with the psychopathology of our city exposed to the eye, and contemplate the actions in
which we participate collectively as an opportunity to work together in traumas, manias
and obsessive complexes . While there is no doubt that the momentum and morals of this
struggle are sustained throughout the social spectrum through the constant invocation of
the "people of Hong Kong," who are encouraged to protect their home at all costs, and
while this unanimous concern covers many problems, we accept the turmoil and calamity
of our time, the need to intervene in circumstances that are never of our choice. However,
bleak things may appear, this fight offers an opportunity for new meetings,
What happened to the civic discourse in the interlude between the umbrella movement and
the one now? Did it contract, expand, decay, transform?
That is an interesting question to ask. Perhaps the most important thing we can report on
the current sequence is that, surprisingly, when a small fraction of protesters tried to
access the Legislative Council on June 9 after a one-day march, it was not universally
criticized as an act of insanity, or worse , the work of China or the police as
provocateurs. Note that between June 9 and 12, in the two attempts to enter the
legislative council building until now, the legislative assembly was not in session;
people were effectively trying to enter an empty building.
Now, as much as we have our reservations about the effectiveness of doing this or that
action, this is extraordinary, considering the fact that the last attempt to do so,
which occurred in a protest against development in the northeastern territories little
before the umbrella movement, it took place while the deliberations were pending and were
widely condemned or ignored.Some might suggest that the legacy of the Sunflowers
movement in Taiwan remains a great inspiration to many here; others might say that the
imminent threat of Chinese annexation is driving the public to support desperate measures
that would otherwise punish.
On the afternoon of June 12, when tens of thousands of people were suddenly assaulted by
riot police, fighting to escape rubber bullets and tear gas, no one condemned the masked
squadrons of the front fighting against the advance lines of the police and turned off the
tear gas canisters when they landed. There has always been a seemingly insurmountable
chasm between "peaceful" protesters (pejoratively called the "peaceful non-violent
rational morons" by most of us on the other side) and "bellicose" protesters who believe
in action direct. Each side tends to see the other with contempt.
The online forum LIHGK has functioned as a central axis for the organization of young
people, exchange of political comments and to move information related to this struggle.
For the first time, a large number of threads on this site are dedicated to closing this
gap or, at least, to cultivating respect for those who do nothing but show up at the
marches every Sunday; if only because the marches move millions of participants, take
sides and are quite important, no matter how boring they really are.
The last time the marches were close to this magnitude, an Executive Director[title of the
mayor of Hong Kong]had to resign and the amendment to a law on freedom of expression moved
to the background. All kinds of groups try to invent a way to contribute to the struggle,
the most notable of which is the congregation of Christians who have gathered in front of
the police lines before the legislative council singing the same hymn without rest for a
week and a half . That hymn has become a chorus that will probably resonate through
struggles in the future, for better or worse.
Are there openings or lines of escape in this movement that could allow interventions that
undermine the power of the police, the law, the merchandise, without producing a militant
subject that can be identified and eliminated?
It is difficult to answer this question. Despite the fact that the proletarians make up
the vast majority of people who fight this fight, the proletarians whose lives are stolen
from jobs without a soul, who are forced to spend more and more of their salaries on the
payment of income that continue to skyrocket due to the extensive gentrification projects
undertaken by state officials and private promoters that are often the same, we must
remember that many believe that "free market capitalism" is a defining feature of Hong
Kong's cultural identity, which distinguishes it from "red capitalism manipulated by the
communist party." What currently exists in Hong Kong, for some people, is far from ideal;
when you say "the rich", images of the monopolies of the magnates are evoked,
So, just as people cry out for a government and institutions that we can adequately call
"our," yes, including the police, they want capitalism that we can finally call "our," a
capitalism free of corruption, political deception and Similar. It's easy to laugh at
this, but like any community gathered around a founding myth of pioneers fleeing
persecution and building a land of freedom and a lot of sacrifice and hard work ... it's
easy to understand why this fixation exercises such powerful control over the imagination.
This is a city that fiercely defends the initiative of the entrepreneur, of the private
company, and understands each trickery as a way to make a living, a tactic in the struggle
to survive. This bleak sense of life as survival is omnipresent in our discourse; When we
talk about "work," we use the term "??," which literally means "look for the next meal."
That explains why protesters have traditionally been very careful to avoid opposing the
working masses through actions such as blocking the roads used by buses that transport
workers back home.
While we understand that a large part of our lives are occupied and consumed by work,
nobody dares to propose a rejection of work, to oppose the indignity of being treated as
producer-consumers under the domain of the product. The cops are unbelievable for being
the "guard dogs" of an evil totalitarian empire, rather than for what they really are: the
infantrymen of the property regime.
What is novel about the current situation is that many people now accept that acts of
solidarity with the struggle, however small, can lead to an arrest, and are willing to
cross this changing line between legality and Illegality It is no exaggeration to say that
we are witnessing the emergence of a generation that is prepared for imprisonment,
something that was previously restricted to "professional activists" at the forefront of
social movements. At the same time, there is no discussion about what the force of the law
is, how it works or the legitimacy of the police and prisons as institutions. People
simply feel that they need to employ measures that transgress the law to preserve the
sanctity of the law,
However, it is important to keep in mind that this is the first time that proposals for
strikes are presented in various sectors and general strikes regarding an issue that, on
the surface, has no relation to work.
How do barricades and occupations like those of a few days ago reproduce in the context of
Barricades are now common. When people gather in mass and intend to occupy a certain
territory to establish a front, the barricades are built quickly and effectively. Now
there is a growing sense that occupations are becoming routine and useless, physically
demanding and, ultimately, inefficient. What is interesting in this fight is that people
really spend a lot of time thinking about what "works", which requires the least effort
and achieves the maximum effect in paralyzing parts of the city or interrupting
circulation, rather than what it is more morally attractive to an imaginary "public" who
observes everything from the safety of the living room; or even, conversely, what "feels"
as more militant.
There have been many popular proposals for "non-cooperative" daily actions, such as
clogging a whole meter by coordinating groups of friends "packing" wagons with people and
luggage inside for an entire afternoon, or canceling bank accounts and withdrawing savings
from accounts with In order to create inflation. Some have made suggestions on how to
avoid paying taxes for the rest of their lives. This may seem little, but the interesting
thing is the implacable circulation of proposals of all kinds, of people with different
types of experience, and how people can act on their own initiative where they live or
work and in their daily lives, instead of imagining "The fight" as something that is
fought exclusively in the streets by masked and capable young people.
Faced with any criticism that someone might have about what has happened so far, this
formidable exercise of collective intelligence is really impressive: an action can be
proposed in a messaging group or in an anonymous message thread, some people organize
themselves to do it, and it runs without any problem or fanfare. The forms circulate and
multiply as the different groups test and modify them.
In the West, Leninists and Maoists have been asking about "Agents of the CIA" or "Color
Revolution promoted by the West." Have the hegemonic forces of Hong Kong invoked the issue
of "external agitator" at the plot level?
In fact, that is the official line of the Executive Director, who has repeatedly said that
he considers last week's events as unbridled behavior incited by foreign interests
interested in carrying out a "color revolution" in the city. I'm not sure if he would
repeat that phrase now that he has publicly apologized for "creating contradictions" and
disagreeing with his decisions, but anyway, it's very funny that the tankies[staunch
communists in favor of taking out the tanks]share exactly the same opinion than our Head
It is an open secret that several NGOs, parties and pro-democracy expert groups receive US
funds. It is not some kind of hidden conspiracy theory that only tankies know. But these
tankiesThey are suggesting that the platform that coordinates the marches, a broad
alliance of political parties, NGOs and the like, is also the ideological spearhead and
the architect of the "movement," which is simply a colossal misunderstanding. That
platform has been widely denounced, discredited and ridiculed by the partisan tendencies
of "direct action" that are forming around us, and it is only recently, as we said before,
that there are twisted threads on the Internet that indirectly praise them for being able
of coordinating the marches that really achieve something. Hopefully the tankies will stop
treating the whole world as insane neo-colonial sheep acting at the cryptic instances of
Western imperialist intelligence.
That said, it would be dishonest if we did not mention that, along with the message
threads that analyze the subtleties of direct action tactics abroad, there are also
threads that alert everyone to the fact that the White House voices have expressed
disapproval by the[extradition]law.
In addition, there is a really extravagant request circulating on Facebook for people to
call the White House for a foreign intervention. I am sure that one would see this kind of
thing in any fight of this scale in any non-western city. They are not 'gunmen' who
confirm the theory of imperialist manipulation; they are marginal phenomena that are not
the driving force behind the events.
Has any slogan, neologism, new jargon, popular conversation topics or funny phrases that
are exclusive to the situation?
Yes, many, although we are not sure how to translate them. But the force generated by
these memes, which inspire all these stickers and phrases of WhatsApp and Telegram, is
actually the police force.
Between shooting people in the eyes with rubber bullets, dropping the batons and
indiscriminately firing tear gas canisters at the head and groin of the people, they also
found the time to throw some truly classic pearls that made their way to the shirts .
One of these reasons is the unfortunate and politically incorrect "liberal pussy." In the
middle of a skirmish between police and protesters, a policeman called someone on the
front line for that epithet. Unfortunately, all of our Cantonese tacos revolve around the
male and female genitals; We have a few words for private parties. In Cantonese, this
formulation does not sound as strong as in English. These meetings in Cantonese, "liberal"
and "pussy" sound positively fun.
Does this turmoil have anything to do with the Fishball riots or the autonomy of Hong Kong
a few years ago?
The "fishball riots" were a lesson in many ways, especially for people like us, who were
some distance from the people involved. It was an explosion of paroxysmal fury against the
police, a completely unexpected replica of the collapse of the umbrella movement. A whole
party, the previously beloved of the right-wing youth, the «Hong Kong Indigenous«, They
owe their entire career to this riot. They made sure everyone knew they were going to
attend, presented themselves in uniform and waved their blue flags on stage. They were
taken to the police station, disqualified and imprisoned: one of the most important
members is now seeking asylum in Germany. His views on Hong Kong's independence have
apparently softened considerably in the course of the relationship with the German Greens.
That is still fresh in the memory of people who know that invisibility is now of the
What effect has the release of Joshua Wong had?
We are not sure how surprised foreign readers will be to discover, after watching that
horrible documentary about Joshua Wong on Netflix, that his release has not inspired much
joy. Demosisto is now effectively the "stick left" among a new group of high school students.
Are populist factions functioning as a true restoration force?
Everything we have described above illustrates that, while the struggle is currently
beyond the reach of each established group, party or organization, its content is populist
by default. The struggle has reached a growing scale and has attracted a wide range of
actors; at this time, it expands by minutes. But little is thought about the fact that
many of those who are most obviously and immediately affected by the law will be people
whose work is carried out at the border; working and providing assistance to Shenzhen
workers, for example.
No one is completely sure what the real implications of the law are. Even the perspectives
described by professional lawyers vary greatly, and this allows media corporations to
grant themselves permission to self-qualify as the "voice of the people", ample space
to frame the whole issue as simply a matter of danger to Constitutional Autonomy of Hong
Kong, with an entire city in revolt against the imposition of a surveillance state that
When reading the messages and talking with people around the government complex, one might
think that the introduction of this law means that expressions of online dissent or
inconvenient messages to friends in the continent could lead to extradition. This is far
from being the case, as far as the law itself is concerned. But the events of recent
years, during which bookstores in Hong Kong have disappeared for selling prohibited
publications in mainland China, and in which activists have been detained in Hong Kong and
deprived of any communication across the border, offer little reason to trust a match[see
Carrie Lam]that it is already notorious for imputing invented charges and contravening
laws when it is convenient. Who knows what they will do once the official authorization
has been granted.
Paranoia invariably establishes itself whenever the problem of China arises. On the
afternoon of June 12, when the tear gas clouds began to clear up, the founder of a
Telegram group with more than 10,000 active members was arrested by the police, who
ordered him to unlock his phone. His testimony revealed that he was told that even if he
refused, they would hack his phone anyway. Later, the news reported that he was using a
Xiaomi phone at that time. This news went viral, and many commented that their choice of
phone was bold and idiotic, since the urban legend says that Xiaomi phones not only have a
"backdoor" that allows Xiaomi to access the information of each of them, but Xiaomi, by
virtue of having its servers in China, Download all the information stored in your cloud
to the database of the Party Masters. It is useless to try to suggest that users who feel
anxious about such things can take steps to block the back doors, or that the removal of
background information can be detected simply by verifying the use of the data on their
phone. Xiaomi is effectively considered a communist tracking device designed by experts,
and the arguments are no longer technical, but ideological to the point of superstition.
or that the elimination of background information can be detected simply by verifying the
use of the data on your phone. Xiaomi is effectively considered a communist tracking
device designed by experts, and the arguments are no longer technical, but ideological to
the point of superstition. or that the elimination of background information can be
detected simply by verifying the use of the data on your phone. Xiaomi is effectively
considered a communist tracking device designed by experts, and the arguments are no
longer technical, but ideological to the point of superstition.
This "post-truth" dimension of this struggle, combined with all the psychopathological
factors we listed above, makes everything that is happening much more disconcerting, much
more overwhelming. For a long time, fantasy was the impetus for social struggle in this
city: the fantasy of a national, urban, free-thinking, civilized community and sharing
each of the negative freedoms provided by law, the fantasy of electoral democracy ...
Wherever affirmative fantasies are put at risk, they defend themselves and proclaim
themselves in public, en masse, and in the sales of «I am Honkonés»[sic]they are exalted
This is what gives the processes a distinctively conservative and reactionary flavor,
despite the radical and decentralized new forms of action. All we can do as a collective
is to look for ways to subvert this fantasy, expose and demonstrate its emptiness of form
At this time, it seems unreal that everyone around us is so sure, they have such clear
things about what they should do (oppose this law with all the means at their disposal),
while the reasons for doing so remain hopelessly in the dark. It could well be the case
that this suffocating opacity is our luck at the moment, in this phase based on more
action, less talk, more in the relentless need to be aware and act on the flow of
information that is constantly accelerating to Around us.
In many ways, what we see happening around us is the fulfillment of what we have dreamed
for years. Many regret the "lack of political leadership," which they see as a harmful
habit developed over years of failed social movements, but the truth is that those who are
accustomed to being protagonists of struggles, including ourselves as a collective, We
have been overtaken by events. It is no longer a small scene of activists who invent a set
of tactics and programs and try to sell them to the public. "The public" is taking action
around us, exchanging techniques in the forums, devising ways to circumvent surveillance,
to avoid being arrested. It is now possible to learn more about fighting the police in an
afternoon than before in years.
Amid this strenuous acceleration, is it possible to introduce another rhythm, in which we
can engage in a collective contemplation of what we have become, and what we are becoming
as we rush into the tumult?
As always, here we are, fighting alongside our neighbors, ardently looking for our friends.
After discussing the preliminary draft of this article, one of us made reservations
about this statement, stating that it was not a completely accurate representation of the
events. While a few people ignored the instructions of those who had the microphones,
others were receptive to them, taking them into account while receiving information from
various messaging apps.
We must remember that a significant proportion of people who have taken to the streets are
out there for the first time, and very often they may feel overwhelmed by panic. There
were scenes, for example, of young people who suffered anxiety attacks in front of the
police lines, and others had to be removed from the line of fire. It is also worth
describing our own experiences on June 21, when protesters organized several blockades of
government buildings after the Chief Executive did not respond to a popular ultimatum.
That afternoon involved hundreds of protesters who rushed to propose, discuss, evaluate
and make decisions spontaneously, and lied about the suggestions that this new generation
simply rejects the discussion for fear of co-optation.
Of course, there are doubtful phenomena in this effort to create forms of decision-making
in a popular struggle: the occupation of the entrance to the headquarters of the Hong Kong
police, which lasted until night, became a debacle when the The debate over whether the
occupation should continue was submitted to a contested vote.
In addition, it is worth asking whether the movement's amorphous and amorphous nature,
composed of newbies who are inventing things as they go, makes it vulnerable to capture:
on the afternoon of the 21st, it was Joshua Wong who gathered dispersed units of
protesters to meet in front of police headquarters. We suspect that this had more to do
with the fact that everyone had presented themselves to the area without having a clear
idea of what they could do, rather than the person of Joshua Wong, but it is not clear.
In reflecting on the hidden problems because of the apparent unanimity of the "people
of Hong Kong," we could begin by asking ourselves who suggests that framework that is this
city, who composes this imaginary subject. We have seen Nepalese and Pakistani brothers
and sisters on the streets, but they hesitate to make their presence known for fear of
being accused of being thugs employed by the police.
"The places of institutional power exert a magnetic attraction on the revolutionaries.
But when insurgents manage to penetrate parliaments, presidential palaces and other
institutional headquarters, such as in Ukraine, in Libya or in Wisconsin, it is only to
discover empty places, that is, without power, and furnished without any taste. It is not
about preventing "people" from "taking power" because they are so fiercely prevented from
invading these places, but about preventing them from realizing that power no longer
resides in institutions. There are only desert temples, strengths out of service, nothing
more than scenery, true traps for revolutionaries. «-The invisible Committee,«For our
Accidentally, that attempt was much more spontaneous and successful. The police had not
assumed that crowds of people who had sat peacefully with their heads in their hands
feeling helpless while authorizing developments, would suddenly try to run to the council
doors by force, breaking some of the windows.
On the night of June 11, all young clients of a McDonald's of 'Admiralty' were retained
and their identities recorded. On June 12, a video that went viral showed a young man
carrying a box of bottled water to the protesters being attacked by a squad of policemen
To give two quite different examples, this includes the populist Apple Daily,
xenophobic and vehemently anti-communist, and the "Hong Kong Free Press," an independent
online medium in English of the band of "outraged liberals" run by expatriates who have an
affinity for young localist / nativist leaders.
A - I N F O S N E W S S E R V I C E
By, For, and About Anarchists
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