Wednesday, 23 May 2018

Let The Prisoners Speak.

          Anyone with half a brain cell knows that the prison system is a state tool of repression and control, and has nothing to do with "rehabilitation". Prisons are also a place where people with learning difficulties, mental health problems and addiction problems and various other problems, are stored out of public view. They are places of violence and brutality where the human spirit can be ground down, where people are caged, and in most cases, in grossly overcrowded conditions. 
    The only humane approach to prisons is to demolish them completely, removing this scar from the face of our society. 
   There is a call out for all prisoners and ex-prisoners to let the world hear their stories, their experiences, their points of view. Bring the prison experience to the public at large, open their eyes and awaken their sense of humanity to the brutal savagery of the state prison system.

A call for contributions for a new publication.
       The Empty Cages Collective and the Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee (IWOC) in Wales, Ireland, Scotland and England is calling out to prisoners and ex-prisoners worldwide to contribute their writing to a new publication: Prisoner Writings on Prison Abolition.
         This publication will share prisoner voices in the prison abolition conversation. It will centre the experiences of people in prison and their ideas on questioning, resisting and dismantling the prison industrial complex – as well as building a world without prisons.
It will be published during the International Week of Solidarity of Solidarity with Anarchist Prisoners at the end of August 2018.
           Material received before the 1st June will be published in an interim publication distributed at the International Conference on Prison Abolition (ICOPA) that is taking place in London, England from 15-18th June 2018. It will also be distributed online, be posted to prisoners and shared with radical distributors across the planet.
Prisoners are invited to send letters, articles and artwork to:
Empty Cages Collective, c/o BASE Social Centre, 14 Robertson Road, Bristol BS5 6JY, UK
Or supporters can email typed-up contributions to:

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Sunday, 20 May 2018

Royal Statues, Symbols Of Brutal Conquest.

         A little reminder of how the British monarchy, as head of state, presided over the plunder and brutalising the planet. How they and their privileged parasites grew fat on the spoils of that plunder, riding roughshod over the indigenous people. Theirs is a history of brutal conquest and vicious control, a history written in the blood of millions of ordinary people across the globe. Statues of royalty are symbols to a bloody and brutal history for self gain and power. Thanks Loam for the video link.

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Let Your Righteous Anger Burst Forth.

      At the moment, looking at our babbling brook of bullshit, the mainstream media, you would be forgiven for thinking that our world comprises of over privileged useless prats, prancing around in ridiculous attire, being cheered on by a mindless horde of adoring fans. All because our biggest social benefit family have decided to try to cement their family's privileged position by having another wedding. No mention in the babbling brook of bullshit's out pouring, of the strikes and mass demonstrations in France against this system that spawns these over privileged prancing prats.

        France is in turmoil with transport strikes, social service strikes and student strikes. Not to mention the brutal state attempt at the eviction of ZAD, which has been going on for weeks now. Groups from various sections of French society are calling and organising for a general strike. The simmering anger that has been bubbling away under the surface is starting to break through in an attempt to tear this rotten corrupt system apart. We should be supporting their efforts in any way we can, and be trying to bring to boiling point, that simmering anger that lies just below the surface in our own society. Years of a deliberate ideology of dispossessing the poor, has fuelled that anger, but anger without a target is like a blind archer behind a bow. We have to direct that anger at the root cause of our ever decreasing share of the country's wealth, that we the people create, capitalism itself.
       This from Enough is Enough:
           As we reported more and more people discuss an indefenite general strike on the French territory. In the coming week there are two major mobilizations: on May 22 and May 26. On May 22 students are mobilizing for the “Day of the Barricades”and the public services sector will go on strike.
        On May 14 there was a first meeting in Paris about the current mobilizations and a general strike. The meeting was organized in less than two weeks by Front Social and about 300 people attended. There is now a proposal for another meeting with activists of various general assemblies (railway workers, postmen, students etc.) to meet in the evening of May 22. Gaël Quirante (a union member of SUD Post 92) said during the May 14 meeting: “It is time to discuss how we go on strike, how to amplify the strike, how we generalize it, how we build a general strike. And a general strike is something different than just not working, it’s not only for those who have a job: a general strike means that at some point, with or without job, is a strike that raises the question of who decides in our lives.”
Read the full article HERE:
        The ongoing struggle for ZAD:
          Since the government’s decision to cancel the construction of an airport at Notre-Dame-des-Landes (NDDL) on January 17, 2018, life on la ZAD—the Zone a Défendre (Zone To Defend) where the airport was to be built—has been a complicated series of conflicts about whether to negotiate with the government for the future of the land. Any lingering illusions that it could be possible to coexist peacefully with the authority of the state were dispelled this week, as the French government initiated what they hope will be the decisive eviction of this world-famous inspiring autonomous zone. To learn about the fifty years of struggle that led up to this moment, read our full history, “La ZAD: Another End of the World Is Possible.”
The latest from ZAD:
           The government has announced a second wave of evictions on the zad of Notre-Dame des-Landes. The operation could be launched as soon as May 15th. We have no idea how large or how long it will be. What is certain is that we cannot trust official announcements and that we will mobilise if faced with any new attempt to pick and choose, which living places on the zad they will evict.
           Despite those, from the government or unfortunately even from the movement, who try to sow divisions, label and increase tensions, we will maintain as wide as possible a common defense for all the living places, perspectives and activities that are intertwined on the zad.
         This is the line that we have wanted to hold, as much within the negotiations as with the various forms of resistance and mobilisations on site for several weeks. We thus invite everyone to be ready to react again on the zad and everywhere else from May 15th.
Read the full article HERE: 


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Saturday, 19 May 2018

Where Is The Righteous Anger?

       The recent weeks of murder on the false border between the Zionist Israeli state and the occupied territory known as Gaza, should have shocked and outraged the whole of humanity, but it didn't. The Zionist state of Israel's response was that its military thugs acted with great restraint. The UN Human Rights Council voted to lauch an investigation into the killing of 110 Palestinian protesters, the UK representative abstained, obviously not moved by the Zionists' murder of unarmed protesters. 110 unarmed protesters shot dead, 64 in one day, was insufficient to move the UK government.
     These Palestinian deaths were not something in the heat of battle, this was for the Zionists military machine, an outing where they could insult, laugh at and cheer when they deliberately shot a protester dead.
       This from Middle East Eye: 
          The extent of the violence against unarmed civilians, coupled with the fact that Israel has non-lethal options for dealing with demonstrations, has failed to evoke a significant public discussion in Israel.
          Even some of the most disturbing footage - such as the clip of a protester rising from his prayers only to be met with a bullet, or the woman holding a flag and nearing the fence and falling to the ground from a sniper's shot - have failed to evoke a collective sense of horror.
         When a Palestinian journalist was shot by a sniper despite wearing a vest clearly marked "Press," Israelis were quick to brand him as a "Hamas activist" or a "terrorist with a drone". -----
  ------And then the media got hold of a short video, just a minute and 24 seconds long. Once again, it showed a blurry image of an unarmed Palestinian approaching the fence, only to be shot by a soldier before falling to the ground. We've already seen other similar videos, and Israel did not get upset. But in this one, there was a soundtrack that made a difference: In the background, soldiers can be heard cursing and expressing overt, vulgar enthusiasm as the unarmed victim falls to the ground.
        All these killings were when the Zionist military machine was well out of reach of any harm from the protesters, and in the weeks of protests, only one Israeli soldier was slightly hurt by a stone.
        These state murders should not be allowed to drift into the fog of history, but should be protested in every city continuously until the Zionist state of Israel is halted in its cold blooded brutality, its genocide of the Palestinian people, and its continuous land grabs, and the Palestinian people are free to determine their own direction.
        This Saturday saw one such protest, held in Buchanan Street by the Scottish Palestinian Support Campaign. It was well attended, though in my belief, due to the magnitude of the recent brutal events, it should have been far larger. 
       One little criticism was that there was only one red and black flag there, held by a friend and comrade, with a couple of his mates, thank you, you know who you are. I believe that state repression is state repression, state violence is state violence, state murder is state murder, and we should be there on the street making our voices heard. 

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A Second Start.

       After a very late and false start to my cycling season about a month ago, I was hit with some more problems. So feeling good and Friday being a beautiful day, start number two was scheduled. So Stasia and I set off for the same very easy, and very short, relatively flat run along part of the Forth and Clyde canal. I can't believe it is halfway through May and I am just starting (again) my cycling season, what a crap year. However, once again that wonderful feeling of pumping the pedals, looking around at the countryside and enjoying the brilliant weather. Being a weekday, the canal path was not that busy, at the weekends it can be a bit of a nightmare as it very popular with walkers, runners, families, dog walkers, couples with prams and of course cyclists, it is not a wide path. It was also good to see that the canal was relatively busy with various pleasure craft. A stop off at the Stables, a favourite watering hole on the canal bank a little before Kirkintilloch. A great afternoon, and the legs didn't complain too much, but seem to have forgotten the word "pace".

Some "canalfarers" at rest.

The bridge at Kirkintilloch.

The Stables, a pleasant watering hole on the canal near Kirkintilloch. 
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Thursday, 17 May 2018

Stop The Flow Of Money And Weapons To Zionist Israel.

        While the Zionist state of Israel continues with its brutal genocide of the Palestinian people, you might feel helpless as an individual to do anything about the situation. However as individuals we can hit the Zionists where it hurts, in their pocket. We all shop for food and other necessities, well just take the time to check the country of origin, if it's Israel, just throw it back on the shelf. Some people check by reading the barcode, but this is not always accurate. This brief explanation from Ireland Palestinian Solidarity Campaign, helps to clarify matters:

         Stories and images have been doing the rounds on social media sites claiming that Israel has changed its barcode from 729 to 871 (or other numbers like 500) in order to fool people looking out for the 729 barcode.
       This mistaken belief stems from a misunderstanding of how barcodes work. A barcode only tells you which country a company is from, not where the contents of the product originate.
         What appears to be happening is that 871 is the Dutch barcode (and 500 is the UK one) and Israeli products are being sold by Dutch and UK (and even Irish)-based companies. To take a concrete example, in the case of Tesco ‘meat free mince’, Tesco is a UK-based company so the barcode is 500, even though the product inside is manufactured and packaged in Israel. What is important for barcode purposes is where the company who sells the goods are registered, NOT where the contents of the goods are produced, manufactured or packaged.
        A country can’t simply change its barcode assignation because it feels like it, it doesn’t work like that and barcode assignation is a complicated and regulated international process.
         This is just another reason to always look for the country of origin of a product and not rely solely on barcodes. Similarly, some things that may be made in a third country are sold by Israeli-registered companies with the 729 barcode, even though they may say (eg) ‘Made in Taiwan’ on the packaging. These should be boycotted too.

     There are other areas in which you should carry out the boycott, goods from Zionist settlements on the occupied territories, of which there are many, mainly agricultural food products. The sale of these products help to sustain the illegal Zionist settlements. For a full list of these Zionist settlements visit Boycott Israel Campaign
      Then there is the despicable actions of our own lords and masters sitting in the Westminster Houses of Hypocrisy and Corruption and their collusion with the arms industry bandits. This must be challenged, as millions of pounds of military equipment flows from this country into the hands of the Zionist's military machine which is responsible for the continuing genocide of the Palestinian people. 
       Here is a list of military material sold in 2017, by this country to the Zionist state of Israel. Source Canary:
     Within the document [] are the exact types
of weapons and their components exported:
Types of goods on licence     No. of licences       Value
Military                                     109               £215,585,497
Non-military                              158                £65,428,168
Both Military and Non-military     7                  £2,545,798
Total                                           274              £283,559,464
         That's a lot of gravy flowing into the coffers of the Arms Bandits, blood money, of which the Palestinian people pay for with their blood, and of which we are complicit if we don't protest loudly and in numbers at the corrupt cabal of political ballerinas that go by the name of government.
    Stop buying Zionist products, protest loud and long.

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Monday, 14 May 2018

More Than 70 Dead, The Price Of Protest!!

       Six weeks of protests, over 70 dead, including elderly and children, thousands injured, 37 dead and 1,600 injured, today alone, and rising. As far as I can gather, only one Israeli soldier has been slightly injured during this protest. If this was happening in North Korea, China or Russia or any Western country, for that matter, it would be banner headlines in every newspaper, and our TV screens would be pumping it out non stop. However this is Palestinian people, this is the Zionist Israeli state's slaughter, so it may be reported but criticism will be muted. There may even be talk of an inquire about Israeli military's excessive use of force, then it will all settle down and the Palestinian people will be expected to get on with their lives under the yoke of brutal occupation and genocide. How much longer will the people of the world accept this, how much longer will we be complicit in this 21st. century genocide by our silence and inaction?
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70 Years Of Genocid, And It Still Continues.

      May 15th. a day the Palestinians mark with righteous anger, it is the day the Nakba is commemorated, (which in Arabic means catastrophe). This year it will mark 70 years of persecution, repression and genocide,70 years of a continuous brutal land grab by the Israeli state,70 years of generations of Palestinians being confined to the largest open air prison in the world. Yet the states of this world ignore this savagery against an entire people, not only do they turn their backs on the ongoing genocide of a people, but they arm the aggressor state with all the latest weaponry, and give them a welcoming seat the the table of international power structures. 
      We can't expect the Western power states of this world to end this genocide and land grab, they are friends of the Zionist state of Israel, it is their policeman in the Middle East, Also, the Israeli Zionist state is worth a lot of business to the power brokers of the West. It will only change when the people across the world take matters into their own hands and stand with the persecuted Palestinian people. 
           The following two extracts are from The Independent and are worth reading in full.
   ---The current Israeli land grab in the West Bank and the mushrooming illegal settlement construction that is squeezing Palestinians out of Jerusalem is a repeat of an earlier episode, a perpetual drama that has lasted more than a century.
       Zionist colonial settlement in Palestine began in earnest in 1881, when the leaders of the Zionist Movement in Europe eyed Arab Palestine as an exclusive home for Jews, paying little heed to the indigenous inhabitants of the land. These early ambitions culminated into a bloody but well-orchestrated terror campaign in 1947-48, resulting in the creation of the state of Israel atop the ruins of Palestine. Nearly 600 Palestinian towns, villages and localities were destroyed to make space for an exclusively Jewish state.
      Since then, only names and titles have changed. Zionist militias that orchestrated the genocide of the Palestinians prior to the establishment of Israel merged together to form the Israeli army; and the leaders of these groups became Israel’s leaders.
       At the end of his life, my grandfather’s only wish was to be buried in Beit Daras. Instead, he was crammed into the ever-bourgeoning Nuseirat Refugee Camp cemetery. However, he remained a Badrasawi – as the people of my village are called – to the end, holding so passionately onto the memories of a place that, for him – for all of us – remains sacred and real.
       For the millions of refugees, and for the thousands of protesters at the Gaza border, Palestine is no longer just a piece of earth but a perpetual fight for justice – in the name of those who died along the dusty trails of exile and of those who are yet to be born 
Read the full article HERE:


   ---Everyone in the Great Return March knows full well they will not be returning to their ’48 lands, as they call them – at least not any day soon. They know full well that they risk being killed by Israeli snipers by even approaching the barrier wall – 40 have been shot dead in the past four weeks. But for most protesters it will be an achievement just to show the world they have not forgotten what happened in 1948, even if the world has forgotten them.
          The “right of return” enshrined in 1948 in United Nations Resolution 194 is felt perhaps most strongly by Palestinian refugees of Gaza precisely because so many once lived just a few miles from Gaza’s walls. Almost all the refugees who reached Gaza were village farmers, deprived of their livelihoods too as they lived off the land. Running in terror, past other burning villages, they left grapes on the vine and wheat just harvested, taking nothing with them, such was the panic. Many soon tried to return if only to get food to eat and to finish the harvest, but almost all were forced back by Israeli troops. From the end of the war the attempt to return never stopped, but Israel called returnees terrorists, imprisoning them or shooting them on sight.
Read the full article HERE: 
 Palestinians run from Israeli tear gas in Bethlehem.
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Sunday, 13 May 2018

Progress For The Masses.

   A little verse that offers food for thought on capitalist progress for the masses.

Our grandmothers yesterday, struggling to "give them studies" scrubbed their floors,
they cooked their stews, whitewashed their walls, washed their clothes by hand ...
We today, with two careers and a master's degree, we scrub your floors, clean your sheets, sweep your lint, check your entrance to the apartment, check in after 17, check out before 12, the keys in the mailbox .. .

Well, something has changed.

Isabel Martín Ruiz
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Saturday, 12 May 2018

Spirit of Revolt, Show and Tell, The Free Hetherington.

      In conjunction with the Mitchell Library, Spirit of Revolt has another of its very successful and interesting outreach events, Show and Tell. This time the subject matter is on an occupation at Glasgow University that became known as the Free Hetherington. Spirit of Revolt archivist Paula will open the event, and present to give their story, will be some who were involved in the occupation. It will take the form of chats by some of those involved in the occupation of the "Hetherington", and an open discussion, questions and answers from any of those present. On display will be some of the material from the occupation which is now held in the Spirit of Revolt Archive.
        Display, talk and discussion on The  Free Hetherington occupation & other temporary autonomous zones - free spaces for thought, debate & action in Glasgow. Hetherington House, 13 University Gardens, was a place for mature and postgraduate students and staff to meet as a research club. From February until August 2011 students and staff occupied it against the cuts in Higher Education becoming one of the longest-running student occupations, known as the 'Free Hetherington'. It hosted an active schedule of talks, debate and discussion sessions. After months of protest actions and consultation an agreement was made between the occupation and Glasgow University management.
Details: FREE.
Monday 14th. May, 12 noon - 2pm.
Venue: Mitchell Library, 5th. floor,
Blytheswood Room.

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Tuesday, 8 May 2018

The Myth Of The Legal Society.

       I repost the following extract from a previous post taken from The Invisible Ground. I think it is obviously very relevant to the following case of Tasos Theofilou, in Greece. Though I'm sure if you look you will find these sort of duplicitous standards working in states across the globe as they struggle to keep their tenuous hold on power.

The myth of the Legal Society
        There are many myths that are crucial in upholding behaviors that ensure the public’s continued participation in, and identification with the nation state. Few of these myths are as pernicious as that of the Legal Society; the notion that the actions of the state are bound by a code of laws, and not simply motivated by the state’s desires.
     State atrocities committed through the police and military throughout history and in recent memory have proven the ideal of the free and legal society is a myth.
       How many lived through the evictions of Oceti Sakowin and Sacred Stone Camp? How many more watched via livestream? How many injustices must we witness before we admit that the state is limited in action only by its own ability, and driven only by its own desire!
       It doesn’t matter if we believe our actions will be considered “legal”. When the state feels threatened, legality becomes difficult to define.
The state persecution of Tasos Theofilou, from Act For Freedom Now:

How many times does a person have to be retried? – Athens,Greece

        As many times as it takes the “anti-terrorist” brigade to declare them guilty.
        On March 27, 2018, the deputy attorney of the Supreme Court and the former supervising prosecutor of the “anti-terrorist” brigade appealed to the Supreme Court against the acquittal by the five members (of department A) of the Criminal Court of Appeal of Athens, which declared the innocence our comrade’s innocence.
May 11, the E department of the Supreme Court will consider this appeal. If it is accepted, Tasos Theofilou will return to prison with the initial charges against him (which could even lead to life imprisonment) pending the completion of a new trial at the Court of Appeals, once again with a different set of judges.
       Tasos Theofilou was arrested in August 2012, a few days after a robbery at the Alpha Bank on the island of Paros, during which a driver taxi was mortally wounded while attempting to prevent the thieves from escaping.
          “Following rushed procedures” Tasos Theofilou was described by the anti-terrorist brigade as well as by the media as the thief in a cowboy hat who allegedly killed the 53-year-old taxi driver. In July 2017, the decision of the five members of the Court of Appeal seemed not to obey the orders of the “anti-terrorist” brigade and media because they acquitted him of all charges against him.
          On Friday May 11, they will consider whether the acquittal of the Court of Appeals will be final or whether the comrade will be once again be dragged into another trial on the basis of the following accusations: participation and belonging to the CCF, participation and involvement in terrorist groups, attempted manslaughter, intentional homicide. May 11 will not be the end of the story. It is rather the beginning of a new undeclared, yet very real, period of hostage-taking of our comrade until the decision of the Supreme Court is finally announced, which could take from a few weeks to several months.
           Although the legal proceedings of Tasos Theofilou might appear as the manifestation of personal revenge, this is not the case. This is a political accusation related to the repressive restriction of the anarchist movement, the wider combative movement and our class in its entirety.
         This is directly related to recent developments in the cases of other comrades, who were sentenced to severe prison sentences based on Article 187A of the Penal Code and the article on individual terrorism, as well as the coming trials of comrades, apolitical prisoners and those close to them as in the case of Distomo, which was blithely elevated to the rank of “terrorism” under cover of the case of a revolutionary struggle. That is part of the same repressive plan against any active individual or someone in any way related to the anarchist movement; of the anarchist Marios Seisidis, who was sentenced to 36 years’ imprisonment only because of a DNA report of an expert, to the outrageous convictions of Irianna and Perikilis based on their social relations coupled with samples of questionable genetic material.
           The broad solidarity movement that surrounds the comrade’s affair and which greatly contributed to his acquittal, was a bulwark against the laws of terror and the falsification of DNA samples by the police. Of course, this could not remain unanswered by the “anti-terrorist” brigade and their political chiefs, namely the SYRIZA government, who have faithfully defended both Article 187A and the uncontrollable use of DNA samples by the police since they began exercising their functions. In revenge they are now trying to take him away, and we will oppose them once again.
In solidarity with anarchist Tasos Theofilou
It’s time to get rid of their terror laws!
Organization and struggle for the social revolution.
Demonstration: Saturday 5/5, at 13h, Thiseio (subway station)
Gathering: 11/5, at 9 am, Court of Appeal (avenue Alexandras)
Groups and comrades
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Monday, 7 May 2018

Picnic On The Green, May 2018.

      Well our May Day week celebrations came to a very pleasant end with our annual Picnic on the Green. The sun came out, the temperature soared and the people had a great time. May Day celebrations as they should be, family, friends, chat, music, poetry, fun, dance, food to share, face painting for the kids, and thoughts of past struggles and hopes for the future. Even although some of the performers couldn't make it at the last moment, it was a wonderful mixed afternoon of fun. A special thanks to our to young dancers, they were a star turn.
    Our week started with the Donald Dewar statue gathering on May 1st. music, poetry and leafleting. Wednesday May 2nd was our history walk through the city centre, about 25 interested individuals gathered to follow, listen, question and learn, as they twisted their way through the city. A great success with lots of literature handed out on some of our working class struggles.
     The culmination of our week's celebrations was the Picnic on the Green, Sunday May 6th. This was our third year, and each year it has got larger, so here's hoping that the next one will be bigger still.
     None of this would have been possible if it wasn't for that wee band of dedicated volunteers, who took the idea and pushed it into a reality, nor would it have worked without all those wonderful people who gave up their valuable time to come and take a shot at centre stage, without them it would be nothing. A big thank you to those who came with their stalls and set up, adding colour and interest to the event. Of course there is the most important group of all, the general public that turned up and supported the idea of May Day celebrations on the Green. A big thank you to all and each of you.
     Some photos and video from the afternoon Picnic on the Green:

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