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(en) Czech, AFED: Activities of the Anarchist Federation in 2022 (ca, de, it, pt, tr)[machine translation]

Date Tue, 24 Jan 2023 09:50:52 +0200

Traditional summary of the previous year from the point of view of organized anarchists with links to texts on the afed.cz website ---- The Anarchist Federation (AF) has been operating continuously since 1995, previously with the attributes Czech, or Czechoslovak. A lot of people have passed through its ranks since then, but the membership has always consisted of only a few dozen people. It is no different even today. So there is no quantitative progress, yet it was never and still is not a reason for us to abandon our activities, or even to give up the anarchist vision of a free and self-governing society or the idea of the need for federative organization. On the contrary, with the deepening climate and social crisis, we are all the more convinced that the self-organization of the underprivileged on the principles of equality, horizontality, mutual aid and solidarity is needed more than ever.

From the life of the federation
In 2022, exceptionally, only one regular congress of members of the federation was held, namely in mid-October in Hradec Králové.

Until now, AF has been somewhat characteristic of not going anywhere, as we have always cared more about content and principles than under which banner what is organized. We recognized that it wouldn't be out of place to introduce ourselves a bit and more actively offer our own ranks as a platform for anarchist organizing. So we published a short leaflet "Who are anarchists?" and the Prague AF group organized an informal meeting with sympathizers in June and August with a barbecue or other program.

According to their personal focus, the activities of AF members are usually connected with other groups - some of us are active in the collectives Food not Bombs , Limity jsme mi , Really good squats (ODS), NoLog , Shared houses, MSDN , Zdena , Cocina. Perdida, Committee for the Defense of the Revolution in Rojava and others.

Internationally, AF is a member section of the International Anarchist Federations ( IFA ) and our delegate attended the regular meeting of the IFA Relations Committee in March. As part of the IFA, we are trying to make the voice of anarchists from Central and Eastern Europe heard as well.

If in the previous year the main topic was the pandemic (AF joined the international anarchist statement on the covid-19 pandemic in February), the year 2022 was undoubtedly influenced by the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

The war in Ukraine
Aggressive actions by Russia hung in the air. A few days before the invasion of Ukraine, we published articles about the anti-authoritarian movement and tendencies in Ukraine. Like everyone else, we didn't believe he would come. She came. Immediately after its launch, we issued a statement "Against the invasion, but without hypocrisy", in which we wrote, among other things, about the task of "supporting anti-authoritarians in Ukraine and Russia, listening to them, informing them about their positions and fates, and permanently showing them our solidarity". The next steps could not wait. We just organized a successful eventagainst the Putinist demonstration in Prague, they "decorated" the windows of the Russian Sberbank, they participated in food and clothing collections and their transportation to Ukraine. We made a collection between us - about 80,000 went to Solidarity Operation (today Solidarity Collective), to support specific people, to the Anarchist Black Cross in Moscow, Irkutsk and Belarus and some other projects. We helped people who were stuck at the border while fleeing, as well as with accommodation here or organizing volunteer medical assistance in Ukraine. We also devoted a couple of issues of the wall newspaper A3 to the topic - one warned against Russophobia, the other relied on the racism of the state, which openly discriminated against Roma refugees from Ukraine. On that occasion, we participated in a demonstrationfor the dignified treatment of these refugees, which took place on May 19 in front of the Ministry of the Interior.

In terms of information, we focused mainly on the view of anarchists in Eastern, and thus also in Central Europe - we published the texts of the collectives Autonomous Action , KRAS , Militant Anarchist , Pramen , Antijob , Antiauthoritarian Squad , Operation Solidarity , ABC Dresden , Committee of Resistance , ABC Belarus , Anti-Fascist Action , Group of Belarusian Anarchists in Warsaw , Collectives of Solidarity , ABC Galicja and Zone of Solidarity . We translated interviews withan anarchist from Luhansk, with a member of the Resistance Committee , with an anarchist from Donbass, with one of the founders of Operation Solidarity , with an anarchist from Kiev, with a Belarusian anarchist in the Ukrainian militia, with a Finnish anarchist with strong ties in Russia, with a member of the Assemblea group , with the Anarcho-Communist Combat organization , with anarcho-syndicalists from eastern Ukraine and the Ecological Platform . We zoomed in on the positions of individual anti-authoritarians from Russia , a Belarusian anarchist fighting in Ukraine, a fighterAnti-authoritarian units or activists of the Dresden Anarchist Black Cross. We also published the statements of some other movements and groups outside the given area, such as the Zapatista rebels from the EZLN , the Syrian rebels in exile, the support network RiseUp4Rojava or the anarchist portal Freedom . We are aware that the Ukrainian state is a bourgeois democracy similar to Western ones, so we do not close our eyes to the social status of the workers there and how the economic elite try to use the war to undermine labor law legislation.

We also drew attention to anti-war protests in Russia , the burning of recruitment centers and property of repressive authorities, and sabotage on the railways. We covered anti-authoritarian and " interbrigadist " POWs , partial mobilization (including the homeless ) and resistance to it.

In their statements, anarchists from Eastern Europe are very disappointed by the attitude of a large part of the left , i.e. anarchist movement in the West, which does not want to hear or understand their positions, and they point to the pathology of Western pacifism. Differences in attitude towards the war also occurred within the IFA , where we made it clear that we were on the side of the fight against Z-fascism. Although a joint compromise statement was issued, we have attached our own critical commentary to it, in which we consider the joint statement to be insufficient. However, there was no further discussion. All that was left was to react critically again, when the Italian Anarchist Federation published the text "For a new anarchist manifesto against the war" ignoring the reality in Ukraine and our friends from Eastern Europe. We also addressed attitudes within the anarchist movement in the main topic ("Resistance to Invasion") of the spring issue of Existence magazine , where we also discussed how anarchists in the Czech Republic stand towards the war in Ukraine. We had no idea how, within the Czech movement, fringe opponents of the Ukrainian resistance to Z-fascism would often attack our position in an obscene and dogmatic way. For that reason, on the one hand, we published a study on Malatesta's (whom the aforementioned like to quote) attitude to the struggle for national self-determination, we presented modern historyof Ukrainian anarchism and also prepared a lecture "Anarchists and the war in Ukraine", which we performed at the Fluff and Riot over River festivals. At the autumn congress, the continuation of our support for the defense of Ukrainian workers against the bloody imperial appetites of Putin and his sycophants was confirmed, especially in the practical form of supporting anarchist initiatives, projects and fighters directly in Ukraine, but also by supporting anarchists in Russia and Belarus.

In this regard, during the year we also tried to present anti-authoritarian platforms that help in Ukraine, their specific activities (e.g. Solidarity Collectives , Cars of Hope , ABC Dresden , Medical Self-Defense Network ) and the possibilities of directly or indirectly supporting them, and this includes very specific collections (e.g. for a field medic or for a car for a combat unit). In the same way, we called for the support of ( not only ) anarchists in Russia and Belarus. We also enjoyed participating in benefit concerts .

May Day and Anarchist Strategy
We also touched on the topic of the war in Ukraine at the Anarchist May 1st , which we organized together with FNB Žižkov and Krisa in the form of a picnic with speeches and placing a bouquet at the memorial plaque of the first May Day workers' meeting, traditionally in Prague on Strelecky Island, with the participation of about a hundred people. We focused on the workers' roots of May Day and the topic of work from an anarchist perspective, i.e. the struggle for free work, which is opposed to the existing system of wage labor. In one of AF's speeches, we emphasized the federation's relationship to tradition and warned against ideological slogans that stray from reality. This is because it does not follow our wishes, and therefore we have to take it into account and think over our positions repeatedly.

We analyzed this in greater depth in the autumn issue of the Existence magazine on the topic "Anarchist strategy", which is dedicated to thinking about anarchist politics and understands anarchism as a dynamic direction of thought and a compass in our decision-making, daily actions and planning of longer-term activities.

For climate justice and against the energy crisis
Also in 2022, we were involved in the fight for climate justice, especially by supporting the activities of the Limity jsme my! initiative, which, among other things, organized Climate Camp 2022 in Ostrava in connection with the blockade of the local coke plant. We also joined the parody party , which targeted the fossil billionaire Kretínský. In addition, we dusted off our anarchist wagon and formed an anarchist block at a high school climate strike, and in November we supported a college climate strike and participated in a related demonstration on November 17th. We commented on the climate battlefield from an anti-capitalist perspective in the November issue of the wall newspaper A3 .

The effort to drag out the fossil business for as long as possible at the expense of life on the planet was behind, among other things, the energy crisis, which, in conjunction with rising inflation, often means the complete breakdown of family budgets. In the A3 newspaper , we responded to this with the texts " Let's not pay for rich people! ", " Expropriate the oligarchs! " and " Luxury for all ". The latter text explained why anarchists were joining the trade union demonstration against poverty that took place on October 8. Several dozen people supported the anarchist block under the slogan of the same name, and there was also a conflict with one of the nationalists present. It was this sort of people who took part in other demonstrations, which responded to the crisis essentially only marginally, in fact it was still a similar brownish coalition, as we know it from previous years.

More and more people find themselves at the bottom of the social ladder, which is why we actively and passively support the Food not Bombs collectives, which provide food to the needy and organize charity events . We were able to personally wish the Pilsen team a happy 10th birthday. At the same time, we mediate similar inspirations from abroad, such as solidarity breakfasts .

Another unsolved problem is the housing crisis, where many cannot afford their own housing due to high prices and often have to work to pay high rents. At the same time, there are still quite a few empty apartments and entire buildings in the cities. One of these was occupied by the ODS team and we helped him in this. This happened at the end of November in Prague-Strašnice. With this demonstrative action, it was possible to get the management of the city district to negotiate on the allocation of a building for the project of an autonomous social center. We supported a solidarity protest in front of the Greek embassy against the eviction of the Prosfygika squatter neighborhood in Athens. We also closely followed the events surrounding squats in Europe and subsequently reported on the accused in connection with the raid in Berlin's Rigaer94, about the threat to Poznan 's Rozbrat , about the prosecution of the inhabitants of the Spanish squatter village of Fraguas or about the occupation of new space in Ljubljana.

For the rights of women, LGBT+ and migrants
The fight for women's rights is permanently present in the AF agenda. International Women's Day is a traditional reminder of this struggle. In 2022, I participated in the feminist festival in Žižkov and the subsequent demonstration "Shout NO to violence on all fronts!", which thematized anti-militarism in feminism due to the events. We were pleased to initiate the MDŽ celebration in Pilsen, which was organized by local activists. In the A3 wall newspaper , we have the text " Regressive parade "." condemned the clero-fascist "March for Life" and subsequently participated in various forms of protest against it. In June, we took part in a demonstration in Prague that protested against the decision of the US Supreme Court regarding the legality of abortion. Separately, although with a minimal response, we then launched a campaign against restricting the right to abortion, as part of which several banners were put up in Prague. As an inspiration in the struggle of women, we brought in our media an extensive description of the feminist movement in Chile.

We also addressed the topic of the status of LGBT+ people. And so we joined the black and pink bloc at the Prague Pride parade, which spoke out against the presence of corporations (including fossil ones) at this pride celebration. We reported on the death sentences for two lesbians in Iran, and the terrorist attack on the Tepláren club in Bratislava certainly did not leave us in peace. We published a thematic issue of the A3 newspaper with the text " We are all the Heating Plant! ", we initiated the announcement of a decentralized march against violence against LGBTIQAI+ people, which eventually took place in six cities. Organizationally, we contributed to the biggest one in Prague , which was attended by more than a thousand people. In Pilsenwe again participated in honoring the victims of the attack through a musical party.

Regarding the rights of migrants, in addition to the protest against the discrimination of the Ukrainian Roma, we reported on Greek border guards torturing migrants and deporting them to Turkey or on protests against the criminalization of migration in Poland .

We did not stop drawing attention to the racism of the Czech police and remembered Roma, whose life was ended by a police intervention in 2021, which was followed by racist expressions of police and political leaders. We also provided informational support to anti-fascists who, through direct actions , repeatedly draw attention to the presence of the Nazi memorial on Hvezda hill near Tanvald. And last but not least, we mobilized for the August anti-fascist festival in Bratislava.

Resistance and solidarity in the world
We have been providing information and anarchist perspectives on the various uprisings and protests occurring throughout the planet during 2022.

At the beginning of the year, we reported on the uprising in Kazakhstan . In Prague, we participated in a solidarity rally with the anti-authoritarian protests there, and after the suppression of the uprising with the help of military intervention from Russia, we published the January issue of the newspaper A3 on this topic .

We have been following the events in Rojava for a long time. We brought an interview with a call to support the completion of a documentary film about daily life in revolutionary Rojava. We have prepared a book review by a Czech fighter in Rojava about his stay in a Turkish prison. We joined the protest against Turkish military intervention in the affairs of the northern Syrian Rojava, which took place in front of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic on the occasion of the visit of the Turkish Foreign Minister. About the fascist nature of the Turkish state, we published an issue of the A3 newspaper with the text " What is NATO silent about?" " and recalled the Turkish invasion of Afrin or the suppression of the anti-authoritarian uprisingin Turkey which occurred in June 2013.

We are also monitoring the situation in Myanmar, where there was a military coup in 2021 and subsequent protests. These continue to this day, anarchists are also involved in them, and at the same time, several FNB groups work amazingly here . We commemorated the first anniversary of the coup and provided extensive material to the anarchopunk zine Postaztaa .

We focused on the uprising in Sri Lanka, about which we did not have much information at first, but fortunately after some time we discovered detailed interviews with anarchists from Colombo and Kandy for translation and a reflex of the occupation movement during the riots from another anarchist there.

Vast areas of Pakistan found themselves under water during the devastating floods , the state was unable to respond effectively. People often have no choice but to help each other. Anarchists there organized aid and we joined their call for financial support.

In September , the morality police killed a young Kurdish woman, sparking an uprising across the country. On that occasion, we published a comment by a friendly KPK collective, an interview with an anarchist from Iran, and information about the protest " decoration " of the Iranian embassy in Prague. We also reflected on the uprising against the military junta in Sudan through an interview with an anarchist there.

We also reported on, for example, the strike in the contract sector in Britain, the eviction of the Nora forest occupation in Poland, the fight against limestone mining in Sweden and the fight against the Mountain Valey gas pipeline in the USA.

Against the repressive machinery
A movement that does not care about its persecuted friends is not worth much. This is not the case with the anarchist, who - and we with him - remembers his prisoners during, for example, the International Week of Solidarity with Anarchist Prisoners in August. On that occasion, we published a text about the effort to publicly honor the memory of Sacco and Vanzetti in Boston (a week of action was announced on the anniversary of their judicial murder), sent a joint birthday wish to our friend Mikol Dziadok, who is held in a Belarusian prison, remindedat least some imprisoned anarchists and anti-fascists or the names of prisoners of conscience in Putin's and Lukashenko's empires, brought references to groups of the Anarchist Black Cross (ABC), which takes care of the persecuted and imprisoned, from all over the world and specially introduced the Galician ABC, which was involved in helping anarchists fighting against the Russian invasion.

For a long time, we have been interested in repression against our friends in Eastern Europe, especially in Belarus, many of them received long-term sentences, but before that they were often tortured by the police . Due to repressive pressure, some activities were terminated, e.g. FNB Minsk . Igor Olinevic, who was sentenced to 20 years on hunger strike , wrote the book Jedu do Magadan during his earlier imprisonment . Her first Czech edition is hopelessly dismantled, moreover, according to her, the 3+KK Theater staged the play , and so the AF Publishing House started preparing a second edition. In 2022, we shared calls to help those prosecuted in several processes, such as lawsuitsPramen or Revolutionary Action (we have published several closing speeches from it). We continued to focus on the trials of Krystyna (Kita) Cerenková, Dmitrij Dubovský and Nastya Kuchta. Let's also mention that we were interviewed by Belarusian activist Piotr Markielau, who in November protested at the Prague branch of IKEA against the corporation's use of prisoner slave labor.

Likewise, repression against anarchists (and newly anti -war activists) in Russia continues. Therefore, as a sign of support, we sent a collective photo with a flag and banner to our friends in Irkutsk, Siberia.

We also publicized some repressive cases in Western Europe - the attempt to produce terrorists in France , the condemnation of anarcho-syndicalists in Spain or the protest hunger strike of anarchists in Italy .

Magón 2022 and other memories
We decided to dedicate each year to a personality associated with the anarchist movement. This time we focused on the Mexican revolutionary Ricard a Flores e Magón , to whom we dedicated the year-long Magón 2022 series on our website to mark the 100th anniversary of his death . As part of it, we also presented his closest comrades-in-arms, the context of the Mexican Revolution , the manifesto of the Mexican Liberal Party, the significance for the current Zapatista movement, but also some of his texts about women , war , government or industrialization. We completed all this by publishing a book with these and other texts.

In 2022, we said goodbye to our friend and historian of anarchism Václav Tomek, dedicated a personal memory to him and presented his extensive publishing activity. After 10 years since the death of our friend Jakub Polák, we had the honor of actively participating in the scattering of his ashes and the subsequent discussion dedicated to his memory. Like every year, we commemorated the death of the anti-fascist skinhead Jan Kucera and talked about him at the music festival .

We also remembered others: 17 years since the brutal police murder of Oury Jalloh in Dessau, Germany, 13 years since the murder of Stanislav Markelov and Anastázia Baburová , 53 years since the self-immolation of Jan Zajíce , 101 years since the death of PA Kropotkin , 60 years since the death of E. Armand , 135 years since the execution of the Chicago anarchists , 140 years since the birth of Franta Sauer . Other anniversaries we have not forgotten: 150 years since the anarchist congress in St-Imier, 100 years since the foundation of the International Workers' Association or 33 years since the foundation of the first modern anarchist organization in our country.

In addition, we brought obituaries of anarchists such as Sergio Castilla , Claudio Venza , José Morato , Serge Livrozet , Pepe Cuevas (known from the Scala case ) and Filip Rusina . In connection with the war in Ukraine, we wrote about the death of Igor Volokhov , Sergey Petrovichov, Yuriy Samoilenko , Olga Volkové and five social activists . We also reported on the murder of June Knightly and the suicide of Pavel Koršunov .

Anarchist media
AF operates its daily updated website afed.cz as a central medium . In addition, we manage the AF Publishing website , and before the presidential elections in January 2023, we started working on a special website that would clearly express our position on the presidential office itself, as we described, among other things, in the December issue of the A3 newspaper . In addition, we maintain federation profiles on social networks such as Mastodon , Facebook , Twitter and Instagram .

During 2022, we published two issues of the anarchist review Existence and one issue of the wall newspaper A3 every month . These are intended for pasting - the AF-Olomouc group was undoubtedly the most active in this direction, including the pasting of May Day posters and stickers with anarchist and anti-fascist messages. As part of the AF Publishing House, we published the comic book Goodbye, Batman in 2022 .

With it and other publications, we then participated in the Anarchist Book Festival 2022 , in which we took part in the organization . With the distribution of our printed materials, we presented ourselves at the Fluff fest , the LITR 2022 book festival, the Riot over River music festival or at various benefit concerts .

In addition to our own publications, we also tried to promote in the form of reviews books from friendly publishers or those that we found interesting . Such publishers are, for example, the Neklid publishing house (we reviewed the books Communal luxury , Mutual help: the evolution factor , Women who didn't want to be silent , Anarchy here and now and Believe in beasts ), UTOPIA LIBRI , Salé distribution and Nevim . When we didn't like something, we spared no criticism, as with the book about Luisa Landová-Štychová.

At the end of the year, we published a series of " Punk Christmas " texts on our website about the relationship between the punk subculture and anarchism.

Next year
In 2023 , we want to continue to focus on supporting our friends in Eastern Europe and trying to make their voice heard within the global anarchist movement. We have prepared a rich publishing plan for two years ahead, so everything depends only on how the costs invested in earlier publications will be returned. We have been working on expanding the "Anarchism for Beginners" project, so we can expect to see more of its output published. We dedicate the year 2023 to the centenary of the death of Jaroslav Hašek. We would like to make the traditional May Day meeting a little richer and we intend to continue to be involved - whether under the banner of AF or outside it - in activities against various forms of discrimination, for autonomous spaces, climate justice, the right to housing and other topics corresponding to our agenda.

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