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(en) IFA statement: International Anarchism against the Bosses

From ralf@anarch.free.de (Ralf Landmesser)
Date Tue, 12 Nov 2002 04:44:11 -0500 (EST)

      A - I N F O S  N E W S  S E R V I C E

> From ifanarch@tin.it

[IFA - Internationale des Fédérations Anarchists - International of the  
Anarchist Federations --- founded 1968 in Carrara / Italia]


The "long-lasting and permanent" climate of war we have been thrown into
since September 11th, has become a constant part of our daily lives. It has
implications and repercussions concerning the manipulation of information,
propaganda, lies, repression, psychological manipulation, etc. At every
level, the pedlars of war are working openly or covertly to restrict
political freedom and that of workers' organisations everywhere. The "war
against terrorism" has become the pretext to launch a definite and
determined attack against all areas of resistance, and against any
obstacles which stand in the way of the interests of the international
power system which has the US as its axis. This attack is intended to
hinder any discussion or opposition to this supremacy.On the world stage,  
the threat of a war of aggression against Iraq, the endless massacres in  
the Middle East, the increasing military presence in Colombia (which as a  
recipient of US military aid, is in third place after Turkey and Israel)  
and the Afghan war, continue to be at the centre of attention while other  
possible theatres of conflict are opening up. The euphoria and boldness  
which characterised the "magnificent progressive fortunes" of economic  
globalisation, so hailed by the neo-liberal rulers, are becoming  
increasingly deflated following the current recession.

Particularly symptomatic of this recession is a reduction in commerce,
limited financial transactions and a highly cautious attitude towards any
new developments.Consequently, the ruling classes are now forced to rethink
and reorganise their politics of "public" intervention (read "state"
intervention), confront their politics of war and their process of

In this context, the process of economic globalisation, pushed forward by
the multinationals and their organisations of reference (the WTO, IMF,
etc.) is slowing down. At the same time, a strong upsurge of national and
macro-regional politics can be seen - such as with the handling of the war
in Afghanistan, the process of building up Europe, the reorganisation of
the role of NATO, and France and Germany pulling out of the Iraq crisis. On
the other hand, discussion of "matters" such as public spending, with all
its related priorities of interventions and incentives, really means
talking about the politics of profit.

This results in a necessary relaunch of the role of national states where,
however, the military force of the North American state is such that we can
glimpse a new phase in the globalistion process; namely, one centred on a
type of political imperialism which forces all the other states into a
subordinate relationship. Simultaneously, practices of integration and
competition coexist in a scenario which sees war as the inevitable outcome
of a crisis in international relations.

Bush's warning - with us or against us - bears witness to the US desire to
impose itself, always and in whatever way, and in a context which is made
more complex by the processes and inextricable intrigues of economic
globalisation. In the recent past these intrigues have, more than once,
conditioned the development of such an imposition, but after the attack on
the Twin Towers they no longer seem to be relevant. In fact, if economic
globalisation had become a giant curtain concealing the continual
redefinition of the powers and their hierarchy, September 11th cut it to
shreds and revealed the wish for totalitarian control of the world by the
ruling US groups.

Their behaviour is not subject to any judgement, as can be seen by the US
stance not only towards the United Nations International War Crimes
Tribunal but also towards the whole of the United Nations. In this
situation, the present movement against economic globalisation,
multinationals and their organisations, is forced to redefine its practices
and objectives. In a context of war, we cannot confine ourselves to
challenging these economic organs without confronting what and who supports
them and the politics that drives them. A leap must be made, so as to give
political and social consistency to our own proposals, our anger and our
personal indignation; thereby bringing up-to-date the revolutionary
proposals directed towards the demolition of political and economic power
and for generalised self-management. In this climate of "civil war,"
cunningly created to conceal people's real desires and responsibilities,
unleashing one person against another - workers and peoples, young people
and movements - we need to see ourselves clearly; we need to recognise the
dangers and traps before us.

One such very present danger is the tendency to enclose oneself in a
regional or national, or an ethnic or religious base, thus breathing life
back into the logic of nationalism. Instead, it is necessary to breathe
life back into internationalism which has animated this period of
struggles. Such internationalism, in its most radical and libertarian
social components, has had the clearest and most determined spirit.
In order to politically oppose the barbarities of war, to bury it and the
whole system it generates, it is essential to coordinate movements wherever
they may be, to have dialogue between the various political and ideological
cultures which animate these movements, and to make comparisons in all
areas. But for this to succeed, it must not fall into the usual reformist
trap, generally Social Democratic, which celebrated its last rites in Porto

In fact, internationalism only has meaning if it has a very solid base
built on a commitment to struggle against "one's own" state, "one's own"
power system - and, in fact, it is only in this way that the effectiveness
of social transformation, animating the different spirits of the movement,
can be measured. This current phase we are living through is characterised
by a speeding up of the politics of fragmentation and the ending of social
"guarantees", a period of containment and social selection. Therefore the
development and direction of the movement will depend on how much we are
able to come up with proposals, with intelligence and energy. It must be a
movement which has the ability to by-pass the formal established
opposition, in order to bring into the movement those people who are no
longer willing to submit to the daily violence of the power system, those
who genuinely believe that another world is not only possible but is in
fact essential.

All over the world, anarchists are giving their practical, incisive and
active contributions towards these aims. The effects of the mobilisation in
Seattle are still being felt. This saw a determined and effective anarchist
presence and is a sign of libertarian renewal in the USA. In Russia, crime  
and repression have not stopped anarchists from being deeply committed  
against an openly fascist regime. Latin America has seen a continued  
growth of groups, newspapers and mobilisations. They are putting as the  
order of the day, the problem of coordinating the ever increasing number  
of initiatives developed on a national scale, especially in Argentina,  
Chile, Venezuela, Uruguay and Brazil.

In Europe, even in the complexity of the anarchist and anarcho-syndicalist
movement, there have been many instances of high visibility of the movement
- from Lyon to Amsterdam, as well as in Genoa, Rome, Paris, London, Prague,
Athens and Seville. Other signals are also coming from Turkey, Nigeria,
Senegal, South Africa, Lebanon and Australia.

Therefore, at such a point in time, it is even more essential that we do
not delay in acquiring an internationalist dimension in local practices.
The International of Anarchist Federations is aiming to promote a
strengthening of ties between its affiliated organisations and urges a
united initiative with the whole of the anarchist movement, taking into
account the richness and diversity of all involved, both recognising and
working on common routes and purposes.

In relation to this, some important stages of this process are:

- Czech actions against summit of NATO, which will be in Prague in
  November 2002. CSAF participates on preparing of these protests very
- the IFA International Congress, Germany, 18-20 April 2003
- mobilisation against the G8 in France, June 2003
- the International Convention on Globalisation, organised by the Italian
  Anarchist Federation (FAI), autumn 2003

p. il Segretariato dell'IFA

   (Massimo Varengo)

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