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(en) US, Phoenix: Over sixty people gather to form the Valley Anarchist Circle

Date Tue, 11 Sep 2012 10:06:16 +0300


On one of the first cooler nights in Phoenix a large assorted group of individuals attended a meeting with the stated goal of forming a new anarchist organization. It had been over a decade since the now mostly defunct Phoenix Anarchist Coalition formed. This group, widely known throughout the states engaged in generalized organizing in the Phoenix Valley and beyond. Last year, prior to Occupy, the last few meetings of the Phoenix Anarchist Coalition were held. By this point most of the Phoenix militants who participated in the founding of the organization had moved on. ---- In order to understand why the move to form a new organization was made it is important to go back a bit further in time.

The excitement after the Seattle '99 rebellion and local May Day organizing created a climate in Phoenix that necessitated further coordination amongst individuals and groups. Or at least at the time, it was the best idea we could come up with. The organization that was formed was general, with a basic mission statement and regular open meetings. Out of this group Phoenix radicalism slowly began to take shape. This group, which encouraged people to find affinity with others and build off their own ideas spawned many different projects. The organization itself, became a force in Phoenix politics to be reckoned with. Maybe most important, the individuals who were involved came from different subcultures, walks of life and age groups. This allowed a culture of resistance to build that would influence different segments of society. On a personal note, I think many anarchists who visit and meet folks from Phoenix notice this.

With the introduction of anti-union bills with no real opposition, a faltering pro-immigration movement and Occupations around the country some anarchists in Phoenix made the decision to intervene. Over the past year many of us have put a decent amount of work into propagandizing, inspiring organizing, and making new connections. The assumption was that this intersection would provide space for new groups of people to enter into a more radical struggle. It is worth noting that most if not all of the anarchists that initiated the Phoenix Anarchist Coalition understood the importance of this intervention.

It seemed that at this moment in time, if our cards were played right, a new organization similar to the one started a decade ago could be useful to a new set of people. Timing was key, Occupy served its course, the Left Immigration Movement suffered a major blow and radical action seemed disorganized and unpredictable.

A group of new and old anarchists got together and made the decision to initiate a new open organization that would welcome all and provide the same things we were provided over a decade ago. Nobody could have predicted the overflow crowd that showed up, over half of which being former Occupy and unnafiliated folks. We have a lot of fighting to do in Arizona, we are the frontline. Wish us luck, if you need to contact us we have bi-monthly meetings that we encourage anyone to come to. We are also available on the internet.

If your city sounds like it could use something like this we would be happy to consult with you as well. Good Luck!
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