Apr 9 2019

June 11th: International Day of Solidarity with Marius Mason and long-term anarchist prisoners.

 

June 11th: The international day of solidarity with Marius Mason and long-term anarchist prisoners. In the 15 years this tradition has been observed, June 11th has facilitated support and action inspired by imprisoned anarchists — from noise demonstrations outside of jails to letter-writing nights, from fundraisers to arson. Setting aside this day is one way of remembering anarchists who are serving long prison sentences, generating support for them, and inspiring solidarity actions.

Because social struggles phase in and out, this day is a way to make sure that our imprisoned comrades are not forgotten. Our lack of memory is partially a result of the techno-alienation of the larger culture we’re fighting against. But it’s also a product of the dynamics of the anarchist space. People become burnt out and the cycle of forgetting continues.

June 11th is a way of combating that amnesia, of trying to sustain a long-term memory in the anarchist space. Not only does this generate support for anarchists locked in the state’s prisons, it forces us to look back at what came before. Considering what previous generations did can both inspire us with ideas we’ve forgotten, and help us understand how our current practices came to be. Continue reading


Apr 9 2019

Freedom for Radek! (Netherlands)

via 325

Our friend Radek, has been held in custody, in the Netherlands, for 5 months now. He was charged with attempted arson at the Polish embassy, which carries a sentence of up to 12 years in jail. Radek – just as many other workers on emigration – had dealt with exploitation by the employers, on a daily basis. Exploitation, unfair pay, unpaid overtime, atrocious living conditions – the realities of work in the West. Radek had tried to solve those problems in a less radical matter. He had given a shot by going public with it, informing the media, executing his rights. None of it helped. Eventually, he took a brave step forward. He went to the Polish embassy in The Hague, with a can full of gas and a lighter. He then informed, that he would burn the place and asked for people inside the building to be evacuated. In reality: springs from the lighter were taken out, so as to make sure, that starting a fire wouldn’t be possible.

By drawing attention onto himself, his goal was to make people aware, of what kind of conditions do employment agencies ‘serve’ Polish workers in the Netherlands. He did it in his own name and in the name of everyone, who are just as him – oppressed by this whole machine of exploitation.
We’ll keep you updated with more details about the incident, after we get Radek’s letter, in which he describes his actions and labour conditions in the Netherlands. Continue reading


Apr 9 2019

Interview with Anarchist Comrade Alfredo Cospito (Ferrara Prison- Italy)

via Inferno Urbano and Abolition Media Worldwide

The following text is from the second part of “Which international? Interview and dialogue with Alfredo Cospito from the Ferrara Prison,” part of a debate that some comrades are undertaking with imprisoned anarchist comrade Alfredo Cospito, published in winter 2019 in the anarchist newspaper “Vitriol” in Italian.

Analyzing the history of the movement of the exploited, of the poor, oppressed and proletarians, we see that anarchist ideas are born, nourished and developed in these contexts; on the other hand, most of the anarchists also come from there (of course there are also exceptions). These ideas were born mainly during the birth and growth of industrial capitalism (indicatively from the early 1800s to the 1970s), and up to 40 years ago, the organizations of the exploited and of the workers are mainly mass and the anarchist groups (and the individuals who are part of them) are also the fruit of that historical era. With the advent of capitalist restructuring in the 1980s, followed by a drastic change in the world of work, even anarchist action and organization undergo changes; to the classic organizations of synthesis (or mass), the less rigid structures, based on affinity and informality, are opposed. The new technological restructuring, based mainly on robotics will obviously lead to other drastic changes (mass unemployment) and the new proletarians will probably be employed in moving goods. In this context, in which the impoverishment of the proletarians (and obviously the exploitation of humans, animals and land) and the wealth of the exploiters will increase, does it still make sense to talk about class struggle? Are there still margins to involve – in the struggle for the destruction of this techno-industrial civilization – the exploited, the proletarians, the excluded? Should we try or renew forms of struggle organization? Continue reading


Apr 9 2019

Anarchist prisoner John Bowden denied parole (UK)

On the 22nd January 2019 after almost forty years in prison the Parole Board considered the case for either my release or continued imprisonment. In the case of life sentence or indeterminately sentenced prisoners once such prisoners have been detained for the length of time originally recommended by the judiciary or Secretary of State, in my case 25 years, then the Parole Board has a statuary and legal obligation and responsibility to review the case for either the release or the continued detention of such prisoners. At three previous parole hearings my release had been denied by the Parole Board on the grounds that I was a “difficult and anti-authoritarian” prisoner, and insufficiently obedient to prison authority; my actual risk or danger to the public, the prime official criteria for denying the release of life sentence prisoners, was never cited as a reason for my continued imprisonment.

At my parole hearing on the 22nd January all of the professionals employed to assess the potential risk of prisoners the community, prison psychologists, probation officers, etc., all provided evidence stating that my actual risk to the community was either minimal or non-existent and that I could be ‘safely managed’ outside of prison. My lawyer informed the parole panel that the three chief criteria determining the ‘suitability of release’ of life sentence prisoners [has the prisoner served a sufficient length of time to satisfy the interest of retribution?; does the prisoner represent a minimal risk to the community?; can the prisoner be safely managed in the community?] were all confirmed in my case and therefore there was no real lawful justification for my continued imprisonment, especially as I remained still in prison almost fifteen years beyond the length of time originally recommended by the judiciary. The issues raised by the parole panel were not in fact my potential risk to the community or potential for violent behaviour, all of which had been assessed by the system professionals who gave evidence at the hearing and who unanimously attested that my risk of either violent behaviour or risk to the community was minimal; the main concern of the parole panel was my propensity to challenge prison authority and my association with radical political groups on the outside, specifically Anarchist Black Cross. Representatives from the London Probation Service informed the panel that all of the groups that I was associated with were lawful and none were associated with illegal activity, and in terms of my relationship with the prison system whilst I continued to question and challenge what I perceived as abuses of power, I had not been involved in violent protest actions against the system for over twenty years. Continue reading