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(en) resistance issue 50. June 2003. Anarchist Federation (Britain)

From E W <nastyned@email.com>
Date Thu, 5 Jun 2003 05:57:18 +0200 (CEST)

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

There's a hot June month ahead, regardless of the rainy English
To start with, the G8 summit in Evian, France on 1 - 3 June is going
to be met with widespread opposition. This is the first summit to be
held in Europe after the Genoa riots in which one demonstrator,
Carlo Giuliani, was killed by the defenders of the rich and powerful.
Since then, they have held their meetings in unreachable places
such as the Seychelles. The leaders have been cast out by their own
governed and as usual in their case they found it better to run away
and hide than to think about why so many people are opposed to
them. Of course, once again the opinion of the democratically
governed people had nothing to do with the decisions made in these
far away places. Now they are trying to hold their meetings in a very
central European location again, not far from Genoa.
The aim of the our movement will be to show that our opinion of
them hasn't changed at all. We still consider them to be murderers,
and puppets of big corporations implementing policies that only
bring destruction to the environment; empoverishment of the
already poor and lots of money for such nice guys as land mine
manufacturers and rain forest destroyers.
Also, later in the month on the 20 - 22, there will be a meeting of the
European Union representatives in the Greek town of Thessalonika
as the start of the six month Greek presidency of the union.
Widespread opposition is expected at this summit as well. We can't
help but have the impression that the whole process of the EU
construction is being carried along according to an agenda agreed
before hand, considering the opposition of the respective peoples as
obstacles to surmount. Not very democratic, eh? Curiously enough
the only point of the construction already being implemented is the
Europol, the pan-European police with wide power of surveillance on
all the citizens of this free union of countries.
We can see a general trend in both the G8 and EU summit: the lack
of real democratic decision making forums in the so called
democratic world. If we want to build an alternative to capitalism and
corporate rule of our lives, then we need to do it ourselves from now
and getting together in the streets and discussing it is the best way
to start. If by simply doing this we meet the violence of the state and
its defenders so be it, but it will be their choice not ours.


Recently, the Anarchist Federation gave its support to the
"Convergence of Anti-Authoritarian and Anti-capitalist Struggles" (
CLAAAC), the French-Italian based network which has been set up
to counter the G8 at Evian. They write: "We believe that between
human beings, there should exist relationships other than that of
the market, of domination, alienation and exploitation. Pollution,
the waste of natural resources and differences in wealth are ever
more catastrophic..."
Read the full statement online at www.claaacg8.org contact us for
a copy.


...aND THE LABOUR PARTY. Over the past few weeks, as
weapons of mass destruction (WMD) have stubbornly refused to
be found, Labour ministers have come up with a succession of
excuses. What are they?
The 'Sneaky IRA' Defence
John Reid, Leader of The Commons, argued that if the IRA could
hide their weapons during 35 years of searches, it was no surprise
the Iraqis could do the same. He forgot that dozens of IRA arms
caches actually were found, but then they actually existed.
The 'Big Country' Defence
Before the war Jack Straw told us it would be hard to find WMD in
a country as big as France. Weeks later he pointed out that Iraq
was "twice the size of France". Finally he admitted that WMD might
never be found. How big does Iraq have to be before Straw admits
he's a warmonger?
The 'Fast Shooter' Defence
Tony Blair said that Saddam had "chemical and biological weapons
which could be activated within 45 minutes" and needed to be
taken out. Yet none were used, so where are they hidden? On
The 'Documents' Defence
Bush's national security advisor, Condoleeza Rice, recently
announced that, with no weapons to be found, the US was pinning
its hopes on finding "incriminating documents" instead. As if
there's a government in the world that doesn't have "incriminating
The 'Biggs Was Guilty' Defence
According to John Reid, everyone knew Ronnie Biggs carried out
the Great Train Robbery even though they couldn't prove it. Now
this excuse is used about Iraq.
The disease of lies and hypocrisy is rotting the whole fabric of
government and always will because it serves to create and
protect privilege and power.



as predicted in previous issues of
resistance it appears the union bosses are joining hands with the
state bosses to try and impose a previously rejected deal over the
heads of ordinary fire-fighters. The FBU executive is again
recommending acceptance of the 16% (phased) offer that was
thrown out earlier this year - it would be no surprise to see
delegates reject it as they did when voting down the previous FBU
recommendation. This would lead to the scenario of workers
having to organise outside of their official union representatives,
who would in turn be doing all they could to sabotage the new
strike - it's happened before.
Nursery workers across Scotland have been staging strikes in
support of a 30% pay rise and a 35-hour week. Over 5000
walked-out closing workplaces in all the countries Local
Authorities. The dispute is especially bitter as there hasn't been a
pay or status review in 15 years! Funny that MPs and company
directors seen to need a review at least once a year...
In London there's been more of the constantly recurring walk-outs
over the inadequate 'London Weighting' - this time local
government workers ( mainly low paid school workers) went on
strike in 9 boroughs in support of a £4000 rating - which has been
accepted in other sectors - in effect these workers are facing
pay-cuts. With rising rents, many local authority jobs are going
un-filled and having to be staffed by high-wage temps - further
worsening the financial situation. The words piss-up and brewery
spring to mind.
Across the channel now - and the French state was hit by a series
of strikes connected to pension reforms in the public sector. Two
million postal workers, bank staff and employees of the
state-controlled communications giant France Telecom joined the
strike - schools were worst affected, as around half the country's
primary and nursery teachers and 40% of other teachers
reportedly joined the stoppage - including blocking entrances to
end-of-year exams.
Given that similar reforms have led to General Strikes in Italy,
Spain and Portugal recently then this could develop into an
extremely serious dispute - especially if linked with the current
industrial unrest sweeping the continents docks, airports and other
transport networks.
Israel was the scene of a five day national strike that crippled the
public sector and shut down much of the economy - the strikes
were in protest at budget proposals for job and salary cuts. It
seems the workers determined action actually paid off with the
budget being altered.


If Mayday demonstrations are a show of strength then the
anarchist movement in Britain needs to put in some more effort at
the gym.
Despite the usual hostile press about Mayday before hand a few
thousand people still turned up in central London to protest about
the way business and the state actively promote war and
repression. But thousands more coppers turned up and were able
to stifle dissent with little effort. Whether anarchists in Britain like it
or not events like this are showing diminishing returns. It's time for
some serious though about what's the best way of promoting our
To make anarchism a threat to capitalism and the state we need
strategy of building up our strength and the long-term commitment
to follow it through. Amongst other things, members of the
Anarchist Federation (AF) have recently been making the effort to
build anarchist groups locally and have already seen success in
Walthamstow, Herefordshire and Surrey. The AF works to build
anarchist organisation locally, regionally, nationally and
internationally. By putting the effort in to build anarchist groups
where we live and work we might be able to build a grass roots
movement strong enough to challenge our enemies when we
demonstrate and strike on Mayday or any day.
At the moment there are real opportunities for anarchists. The
mainstream political parties are discredited and the Leninist left
seems to be in terminal decline. It's an excellent time to build a real
Anarchists, inside and outside of the AF, should seize the
We're always open to honest debate about this or other issues. The
Anarchist Federation discussion forum can be visited via our
website at: www.afed.org.uk.
For more on the views of the AF read 'Beyond Resistance' also on
the website or two pounds from the address on the back page.
The Mayday website can be seen at www.ourmayday.org.uk



Meanwhile, in Walthamstow, local anarchists within the Reclaim
our Cinema group have been busy in their fight to stop a cinema
being turned into a branch of the Universal Church of the Kingdom
of God, that well-known Christian sect.
Over 100 - 150 people went along to the church/former sinhouse of
moving pictures, having requested an opportunity to inspect the
listed building. It had previously been thought that sect members
hadn't had the decency to reply, but anarchists were forced to eat
humble pie when they saw that the Christians, bless them, had
planned a little surprise.
Knowing that demonstrations can get a bit boring, the godheads
had travelled all the way from Finsbury Park to lay on some
sounds, with a choir of 200 and a sound system blasting out
hymns. Locals didn't seem too keen on the UCKGers whose
raucous singing and pavement blocking was an unwelcome taste
of the Kingdom of God on earth. Ironically, the church members
whose counter protest was to ensure that the cinema would belong
to them and nobody else (except possibly God), stood around
singing "Hosanna" and carrying placards that proclaimed, "The
cinema is yours". It later transpired that this wasn't a surrender
note, just a new spin on the word "Yours". "Yours" is really "ours"
without the "why". And that pretty much sums up religion in a
nutshell, don't you think?


Acitivists from argentina are coming to Britain for speaking tour
about the huge social struggle happening there. The (as yet
unconfirmed) dates are:

JUNE: Brighton 16th, Guildford 18th,
North London 17th, East London 19th,
Durham 21st, Manchester 23rd,
Hebdon Bridge 25th, Leeds 27th,
Newcastle 28th,

JULY: Glasgow 1st, Edinburgh 2nd and
3rd, Lancaster 5th, Bradford 7th,
Liverpool 9th, Cardiff 11th.

The tour has been arranged by anarchists and activists across
Britain. Contact the AF for final details.



On Sat 10th of May, West Midlands Anarchists held a
demonstration outside Brighthouse, in Birmingham, off
Corporation St. near Virgin. Here is why:
Got hardly any money? Bad credit rating? Then Brighthouse wants
you to sell them your soul (well, almost).
For many of us, Brighthouse is one of the only places we can
actually buy anything. Well, we say buy, what that normally means
when you get something from Brighthouse is being badly ripped
off and lumbered with debts for years, paying a ridiculously high
interest rate (almost 30% in many cases). This means you actually
end up paying several times the actual value of whatever it is
you've bought, while the rich who can afford the full price to begin
with actually pay less than you!
If for some reason you should miss an instalment, you get a hefty
fine on top of the amount you're already being ripped off for.
Worse if they think you're not being quick enough in paying their
extortionate prices, they'll send the bailiffs round to intimidate you
and seize back the goods that you've probably already paid more
than the full value for. They don't care that you've lost your job, or
that you've got kids, or whatever the reason you can't pay is.
Not surprisingly, this vile practice of exploiting the most financially
vulnerable of us has not gone unchallenged. Questions have been
asked about the company in parliament, the company is a target of
the "Debt on Our Doorstep" Campaign
(www.debt-on-our-doorstep.com), in Birmingham residents of an
estate in Bartley Green took direct action against two bailiffs
employed by Brighthouse, and it was even kicked out of France for
unethical practices!
However, this is not enough. In the long term what is needed is a
mass non-payment campaign such as the one that defeated the
poll tax in the early 1990s. Unfortunately, this is not easy, as
isolated individuals refusing to pay will only result in their lives
becoming hell. This has to be an organised community effort so we
can defend each other's property from the bailiffs and support
each other through any court cases until Brighthouse is forced to
stop trying to squeeze the our last pennies out of us.
If you would like further information get in touch with West
Midlands' Anarchists - Tel: 07866 933 927 Visit:
www.wmanarchists.org.uk Email: info@wmanarchists.org.uk



London Anarchist Federation started mayday by going to the
picket of Wilkinsons organised by London Class War.
This was part of the "Campaign Against Prison Slavery" as
Wilkinsons use prison labour. Prisoners are forced to work for
pitifully low wages (£10 for 30 hours work is common!), helping to
keep Wilkos profits high and wages for the rest of us low. There
was a good turn out of anarchists (and police!) at the
demonstration and passers by were very interested about both
why we were picketing Wilkos and anarchism in general. The
manager of Wilkos didn't look too happy though!
Meanwhile in Wales AF members were picketing Wilco's in
Blackwood, Gwent:
"Just got back from picket of Wilkinson's in Blackwood, Gwent. A
couple of us went up and handed out leaflets to passers by and
customers for well over an hour. The reaction was mixed - a lot of
people had little regard for prisoner's human rights but we made
more headway by explaining about it undermining wage levels/job
security etc. on the outside. Even the man they sent out to
intimidate us seemed to concede this point. After some harassment
by the management we were finally paid a visit by the local plod,
who said they had received complaints from "residents".
When we said what we were doing and showed no sign of leaving
she had to radio back to base for instructions, finally returning to
explain we were not breaking the law and then walking off, much to
the disappointment of the Wilco management!"
AF (Cymru) can be contacted by Email at:

The Campaign Against Prison Slavery can be contacted at CAPS,
The Cardigan Centre, Cardigan Road, Leeds LS6 1LJ. Email:


Untamed Distribution is a small anarchist inspired pamphlet,
magazines and books distribution service based in Bristol.
Write to: Untamed Distribution, Box 18, Greenleaf Bookshop, 82
Colston Street, Bristol, BS1 5BB or send an Email to:



The past year has seen a growth in the national anarchist
movement, most notably with a number of local groups springing
up around the country.
Local anarchist groupings are what make networks and federations
such as the Anarchist Federation stronger and make the
destruction of capitalism and the state that bit closer. Here, a
member of Herefordshire Anarchist Group
(www.herefordanarchists.cjb.net) gives a guide to setting up your
own anarchist group:
"Firstly, it's always best to get in contact with existing anarchist
organisations to see if they know of any groups or individuals in
your area. Get anarchist propaganda out onto the streets. Make
sure people can visibly see posters and stickers etc. Perhaps hand
out leaflets to raise the anarchist profile. But remember to add a
local contact address such as an email people are more inclined to
get involved with local projects.
Once you have started to generate a bit of interest, it is best to call
a meeting to set up a local anarchist group. It is best to draw up a
set of principles, even if a short paragraph, perhaps a mission
statement, perhaps as criteria other people wanting to join have to
agree to. Discuss local issues or whatever takes your fancy, but
get to know people. Most importantly decide on something, if only
the date of your next meeting. People don't want to feel that the
meeting didn't have a purpose.
Once you have a local group set up tell people about it. There may
be other anarchists or people keen to get involved who you've just
managed to miss. Publicise it in bulletins such as resistance.
Perhaps even your local newspaper. After your group has
established itself, it's up to you what you do publish a newspaper
of your own; support struggles that are already going on; distribute
anarchist literature whatever."
For information or help setting up your group contact the Anarchist
Federation, details on back page.


Issue 60 of Organise!, the magazine of the Anarchist Federation, is
now out. Available from the address on the back page for one
pound fifty.



Mayday update
>From the Legal Defence and Monitoring Group (LDMG) :
"Although Mayday was very peaceful, the cops still managed to
arrest about 30 people. Not all have been charged and the picture
is still slightly confused, but we know of 15 people who have been
charged (including a journalist on the Evening Standard!). Of
these, one pleaded guilty (see below). All the others are on bail.
Trials will not take place for at least a few months. Most people are
facing s4 (threatening words & behaviour) or assaulting a cop. One
is charged with s3 (affray). The desperate nature of the charges is
illustrated by the person charged with possession of an offensive
weapon - they had a multi-tool in a pouch, in a pannier, attached to
a bicycle!

WITNESSES NEEDED We urgently need to make contact with
potential witnesses. If you saw an arrest or have photos or video of
an arrest, please get in touch (email is quickest). Please let us
know the time and location. This information may keep someone
out of prison.
Of the 30 or so people arrested at Mayday this year, about 20 have
so far been charged. The first court appearances were at Bow
Street on 2nd May. Only one person pleaded guilty and he was
sentenced to 28 days prison for spitting at a cop. He will serve a
minimum of 14 days inside. LDMG has long warned against
pleading guilty before all the evidence has been produced in
protest cases as, where there is lots of media interest, sentences
are handed down with an eye to how it will be reported.

Legal Defence & Monitoring Group can be contacted by post:
LDMG, c/o BM Haven, London WC1N 3XX (please send a stamped
self-addressed envelope); by e-mail: ldmgmail@yahoo.co.uk and
by 'phone: 020 8245 2930 (24hr answerphone).
www2.phreak.co.uk/ldmg/index.php Postal address: LDMG, c/o BM
Haven, London WC1N 3XX"
Harold H Thompson
U.S. prisoner activist /jailhouse lawyer Harold H. Thompson has
had his most vital piece of equipment, his electric typewriter, go
bust on him and the authorities have ruled inmates cannot
replace/renew any more. Harold's workload on behalf of other
prisoners has increased enormously as a result as everything has
now to be handwritten, which is not only time consuming, but a big
strain on Harold's health. Please write protest letters to:

Mr Quinton White,
Departmental Commissioner,
Northwest Correctional Complex,
Route 1,
Box 660,
Tennessee 38079,

Harold's support group can be contacted at:
Friends of Harold H Thompson,
PO Box 375, Knaphill, Woking, Surrey, GU21 2XL.


Subvert and resist

Take precautions when going on demonstrations and don't take
cameras, booze or drugs. If you're nicked give your name and
address then say 'no comment' to any other questions.

JUNE: 1 - Campaign Against Prison Slavery Conference A
conference in Leeds is planned to highlight the slave work
prisoners do. The use of prisoners is slavery (they have no choice)
and affects workers outside prison whose pay and conditions are
undermined. For more info Tel: 07944 522 001 Email:
1-8 - Stop the Arms Trade week of action. Info from: Campaign
Against the Arms Trade Tel: 020 7281 0297 Email:
enquries@caat.demon.co.uk Visit: www.caat.org.uk
3 - Leicester AF meeting. Upstairs at Ale Wagon Pub, Charles
7 - Campaign Against Prison Slavery picket of Wilkinson's Burgess
Hill Store. Organised by Brighton Anarchist Black Cross. 12.30pm
bring banners, placards etc...
9-15 - Faslane Peace Camp 21st Birthday week of action. Faslane
Peace Camp, Shandon, Helensburgh, Argyll, G84 8NT. Tel: 01436
820 901 Email: faslania@faslanepeacecamp.org Visit:
13 - Pro Missile Defence Rally! Join Blair and Bin Laden, Bush and
Saddam standing side by side, hand in hand supporting missile
defence. Outside the US Embassy in Grosvenor Square, London.
Info: CND - Tel: 020 7700 2393 Visit: www.cnduk.org
19 - North London Critical Mass. Bring your wheels to take part in
this carnival of anti-car culture. Meet 2pm outside Finsbury Park
main gate, Seven Sisters Road. Takes place the third Sat of every
month. Email: northlondoncm@home.se

Join the resistance

The Anarchist Federation is an organisation of class struggle
anarchists aiming to
abolish capitalism and all oppression to
create a free and equal society. This is
Anarchist Communism.
We see today's society as being divided into two main opposing
classes: the ruling class which controls all the power and wealth,
and the working class which the rulers exploit to maintain this. By
racism, sexism and other forms of oppression, as well as war and
environmental destruction the rulers weaken and divide us. Only
the direct action of working class people can defeat these attacks
and ultimately overthrow capitalism.
As the capitalist system rules the whole world, its destruction must
be complete and world wide. We reject attempts to reform it, such
as working through parliament and
national liberation movements, as they fail to challenge capitalism
itself. Unions also work as a part of the capitalist system, so
although workers struggle within them they will be unable to bring
about capitalism's destruction unless they go beyond these limits.
Organisation is vital if we're to beat
the bosses, so we work for a united
anarchist movement and are affiliated to the International of
Anarchist Federations.
The Anarchist Federation has members across Britain and Ireland
fighting for the kind of world outlined above. Contact us at:

Anarchist Federation,
84B, Whitechapel High Street,
London, E1 7QX. Tel: 07946 214 590
Visit: www.afed.org.uk
Email: anarchistfederation@bigfoot.com

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