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(en) <alter-ee> Chronicles from Ukraine - RKAS - part 2 (Anarchy and the Camp) Donetsk - Izyum, August 2003

From Worker <a-infos-en@ainfos.ca>
Date Sun, 19 Oct 2003 19:14:28 +0200 (CEST)

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My summer trip to the Black Guard Camp
Many people know Proudhon's famous phrase "Anarchy is the Mother of Order"
but, unfortunately, after a long time of being twisted in the public
consciousness, almost everybody has a bad association with anarchy,
considering it to be chaos and anarchists to be a drunken mob.
In August I was at a camp organized by the Revolutionary Confederation of
Anarcho-Syndicalists (RKAS) Makhno from Donetsk. At first there was the
travel from Donetsk to Izyum to Diborovo to Belaya Gorka (a remote place on
a riverbank). The travel went down without any adventures but a week before
this, it had rained for almost a week and there were lots of puddles and
flooding in the forest. In order to make it through the forest, you
sometimes had to go through this muck which could come up to your knees or
sometimes even up to your waist. In addition, our group of 23 was carrying
quite a load - besides tents and personal belongings, we had to lug
provisions for 2 weeks. The weather was unpredictable - it rained and
cleared up only to pour down again. We had to send reconnaisance ahead to
find the best trails and at one time it poured for two days straight. Nobody
had any dry clothes left, it was near impossible to dry anything and when
people started to dry their shoes and socks by the fire, a lot of them

When the weather finally cleared up, the anarchist commune came to life.
Despite the stereotype that anarchists are a disorganized crowd, at the
general meetings the daily agendas were set. There was a tabu on drinking
and smoking and playing cards. It should be noted that everybody observed
these rules.

The days looked like this: we got up at 5:30 (people on duty at 4). We had
tea to wake us up and at 6 there was training with exercise, running and
meditation. After breakfast there were psychotraining sessions. Later there
was hand-to-hand combat and training on collective resistance at actions.
During the theorectical sessions we discussed problems in the Ukraine and
around the world. Everybody told something about the situation in their city
or country. (There were comrades from France, Germany and Spain at the
camp.) There was talk on the thesme of mass fascist currents and how this
problem may be solved by active work with the public, especially with youth.
After dinner there were campfires and each night there was a talk on a
particular subject, for example on the theory of anarchism or history. (I
personally did a talk on the psychological character of Nestor Makhno.)
There were talks on the history of UNA - UNSO and on skinheads amongt many

I should add that in addition to my great moral satisfaction, I also
improved by physical condition. I have to say that anarchists do not live up
to their stereotype and Proudhon's saying should not be treated as a joke.
Practice shows that anarchist society is capable of building an ideal world
with self-discipline, self-management and can make order!
Arkadiy Povazhniy, Sumy, Ukraine
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