Tuesday, 27 February 2018

The Unbalanced Scales Of Justice.

        The idea that justice is blind, and all are treated the same before the scales of justice, is one of those enduring illusions and fantasies of the modern society. Justice has never been equal to all in society, wealth, privilege, and position in the ranks of society, all play their part on how that so called blind justice will deal with you. More and more, the modern state sees anarchists as needing a different type of justice from others, the state fears most, those who see another world beyond the authoritarian system of state/capitalism, and are prepare to struggle for that better world. A world that would destroy the privileges, wealth and power of the parasitic leeches that hold the reins of power in present day society.
            Letter from anarchist prisoner Kostantinos Giagtzoglou, on hunger strike since 21/2/18, and updates. 
         This moment I am in the prison of Larissa after the operation that the Special Anti-Terrorist Police Unit carried out early this morning in the isle “A” of Korydallos prison where I had been transferred for court reasons. The cops invaded the isle and the cell I was in, while I was bed-ridden as I was in hunger strike, after a faint episode I had last night, they pulled me out of prison, they hit me and they threw me into the transport vehicle. I tried to resist as much as I could and at the same time I was demanding to take my personal items (shoes, clothes, medicines, etc.) which never happened. They did not allow me to even take a bottle of water I had in my cell although they were aware of my hunger strike and my burdened health condition. As far as I am concerned, I declare that the regime’s attempt to bend my morals will not work.
        “At the moment of dedication, the whole universe conspires to help you”- Johann Wolfgang Goethe
       “Those who oppress their desires, they do so, because their desires are so weak, that can be oppressed” – William Blake
        First of all my captivity does not in any way mean that I am defeated morally or politically. As long as I stand on my feet and my lungs are able to breath, my values and my principles are not negotiable, because my decision to revolt against authority will not be stopped by dungeons and “exiles”. And this is a promise to all comrades.
          It seems though, that my imprisonment alone, as well as my long standing conviction, which has been announced by the police investigation authorities (in the indictment prepared, it is stated that the acts for which I am accused of, seek life sentence) are not enough for the regime. The statists desire to impose on me an unofficial “exile”, apart from the deprivation of my physical freedom. Therefore prosecutor Raikou, instead of ordering my preventive detention in Korydallos Jail, where people arrested in Athens and are awaiting trial shall be detained in custody, she decided to exile me in Larissa jail. An “exile” that aims to:

  1. Keep me apart from my familiar faces, making visits practically impossible by forcing my relatives to travel enormous distances crossing half the country with the expected financial and physical burden, to be able to see me just for a few minutes behind a window glass.
  2. Alienate me from the complex and massive file of the case that keeps me imprisoned, as my lawyers are not able to travel to Larissa so as to have frequent and uninterrupted communication with me. Also the very nature of the case file (thousands of pages in electronic form, video, etc.) makes it impossible for me to access it, even after so many months, from Larissa’s prison as there is no proper equipment.
  3. Facilitate the supervision, control and severe restriction of my contact with comrades who stand in solidarity and other imprisoned anarchists, by trying to isolate me.
        Ultimately they are aiming to convict me before the court decision does, in a forgetfulness regime, “forgotten in a depository of defective and human leftovers” …
      This practice of authority is not something new. However, its strong imposition by the Greek state was evident during 2010-2011, when dozens of anarchist comrades were arrested and then dispersed in several greek prisons (Grevena, Malandrino, Corfu, Trikala, Komotini, Domokos etc.) while they were facing common accusations for the same cases. A role model to this practice was the anti-rebellion repressive method applied by other states abroad, for example in Spain, with the isolation of the separatist ETA fighters at distances of 700 kilometers from the Basque country so that they cannot have any visits and any form of communication between them.
       In my case, the unofficial “exile” (which is not the only one that has taken place recently) seems like and experiment on the authority’s behalf , in view of the adoption of the new correctional Code, since in some way this is a condition for some of its provisions. In particular, authority reopens the exception regime for anarchist prisoners. It has not been many months since the anti-criminal policy secretary, Eftihis Fytrakis of the ministry of justice, declared that “Anarchist prisoners will not be accepted in Korydallos prison”. Today I face my “exile” in Larissa, in the future we’ll see specialized isles for all political and disobedient prisoners. Of course, the experimentation previously mentioned is based on the calculation of our reactions, and especially of the anarchists’ reflexes outside the walls and the solidarity movements to the struggles of the prisoners.
       Also, my transfer to Korydallos prison for another court case of mine (arrest in clashes with the police after an anti-memorandum demonstration on 11 May 2011) took place just one day before, and this did not happen accidentally. It is indicative of the fast track procedures they want to apply in my case, as it seems that there are political pressures from high levels of the regime and their “justice” works on demand …
      “The moral determination of who attacks and gives up on the structures of power is a perception, a moment in which he perceives the beauty of his comrades and the misery of obedience and submission.” I rebel, therefore i exist ” is a phrase of Camus that never ceases to fascinate me, in a way that only a reason to stay alive could. In a world that presents ethics as an area of power and law, I think there is no other moral dimension than rebellion, risk, and dream. The survival in which we are imprisoned is unfair because it is abusive and disfiguring”
Massimo Passamani

        For all these reasons, I REFUSE to passively accept the regime of “exile” and the transfers – abductions in one night. Against these practices I become a 90 degree barrier with my words and actions. As my deep belief is that our actions and attitude should not be orientated in the repression-antirepression dipole, but penetrate every aspect of our being, I wish my struggle will be seen as one more base to attack and open cracks of freedom in the multiple and multiform cells within society – prison. An attack, a result of the rebellion, which, if it doesn’t take place now, it will never be a future option…
       The fact that I am a prisoner of war of the greek democracy does not mean that I left my dignity at the prison’s entrance and backed away. On the contrary, in prison, in the yard, in the cell, in the transport van, I carry with me the pure lust for freedom, every gesture of solidarity, every act of revolutionary complicity that lowers the walls of the prison and the decision to fight for anarchy UNTIL THE END.
      This is the reason why, I started a hunger strike from 21/02/2018, with a request that my transfer to Korydallos prison will be official and the regime of “exile” in which I am in, will be terminated. The transfer request I had applied since my first week in jail of Larissa was rejected, confirming the decision of the authority to put me in a “political quarantine” in Larissa’s prisons and to “be forgotten” there. But the power and the will for a constant anarchist rebellion is capable of reversing every decision made by those who think they can have power over our lives without consequences. Not a single enemy of freedom stays on the safe side and not a single imprisoned comrade is alone…
       I also announce that from tomorrow, Sunday 25/2, I will begin a thirst strike as an escalation to the hunger strike I’m already undergoing. I thank from the heart the thousands of Korydallos prisoners who reminded all of us, today, with their mobilization, that when they hit and treat unfairly one of us it is like hitting all of us. United we will win. Their strength gives me the power to reach to the end in order to win my struggle.








Konstantinos Giagtzoglou.
All political prisoners deserve our unfailing support and solidarity.
Visit ann arky's home at radicalglasgow.me.uk:

We Are All In This Together!!!

       As I have often said, words mean different things to different people. Take the word "austerity", if you are one of the ordinary people of this country you will be well aware of what that word means. It will probably conjure up such words as hardship, anxiety, poverty, stress, deprivation, and misery, or worse. However, if you are in that bracket of the upper echelons of society's parasites, "austerity" will be difficult to understand, if you are one of the political ballerinas, then the word will be translated in your head to a strategy for "balancing the books" or for those of a slightly different political persuasion, dispossessing the poor. 
     How do you comprehend "austerity" if you are one of the UK's top business bosses? Obviously it is impossible when you enter that greed driven world, and your salary for 2015 increased by 10% raising your average salary to £5.5 million.
      Another group that will probably have all sorts of academic explanations for the word "austerity", but unable to really know what it is, is our academic guardians. The figures for the salary increases to the already well paid principals of Scottish universities is really staggering, as the table below shows.

        Hands up all those in lousy jobs on crap wages, those on zero hours contracts, the gig-economy, part-time work etc., have seen their wages rise by 76% in the last ten years? I thought so, no hands. 
       Our political ballerinas are not shy of granting themselves a whopping pay increase, while insisting on a 1% pay cap on public sector workers. In 2015, MP's enjoyed a nice little increase in their salaries of 10%, and again in April 2017, granted themselves another increase of £1,049 bring the MP's salary up to £76,011, plus very generous expenses. Of course most of them have second and third jobs to push that meager income up considerably.  
       So there you have it, we are all in this together, my arse. It is just a matter of how long will we tolerate this man made unjust, unequal, exploitative system that produces so much wealth, but leaves those who produce all that wealth in a life of constant struggle, poverty and deprivation, while the parasites who hold the reins of power, wallow in opulence with complete disregard for the misery that surrounds them, and for which they are responsible.
      To tolerate this system of capitalism is to be complicit in our own exploitation. We owe it to our children and grandchildren to become involved in the dismantling and total destruction of this cancer that breeds deprivation, wars and the destruction of our planet. Capitalism can not be reformed, it has to be destroyed.
Visit ann arky's home at radicalglasgow.me.uk

Monday, 26 February 2018

Call For Solidarity, Glasgow IWW.

         Panos Theodoropoulos of the IWW was arrested while attempting to prevent the harassment and unjust arrest of a 16 year old during the Glasgow Pride march. The 16 year old had been targeted for holding a sign with the slogan ‘This Faggot Fights Fascists’. The police used extensive physical force on Panos, tackled him to the ground, and subsequently held him in custody for over 30 hours. Thankfully, the police dropped all charges on the 16-year-old, though they still see the need to drag Panos through the courts, for attempting to prevent what they basically admitted was a wrongful arrest!
         The arrested comrades were participating in the ‘Red and Black Bloc’, organised by queer members of the IWW as an anti-capitalist, anti-fascist presence in an increasingly commercialised and depoliticized Pride.
        In the same Pride march the police arrested 3 trans activists protesting Pride’s decision to have police lead. These arrestees have not been issued court dates as the police continue to ‘search for evidence’. We know from experience that the police don’t like attempts to undermine them or their attempts at ‘community outreach’. We are committed to ongoing solidarity with these arrestees, along with all those in the trans community who face harassment from the police.
       At the same time, the fact that Panos’s court date is set for International Women’s Day gives us the opportunity to highlight how seemingly different struggles are intimately connected. Patriarchy, racism and heteronormativity are crucial elements of the system of repression we are living in. As imprisonment and social control increasingly penetrate our precarious lives, we extend our solidarity to the increasing number of women prisoners in the UK and to the members of the trans community who are not only imprisoned but also suffer from being misgendered by the authorities and disproportionately experience violence and harassment. We therefore encourage everyone to participate in the various events organised around Glasgow for IWD (provided below).
        When activists are targeted simply for protesting, court solidarity becomes a crucial part of the fight to defend our fundamental rights to protest. Let it be shown that the movement refuses to accept the criminalisation of protesters, whether now or in the future. Let us lay the foundations, in our budding movements, for lasting, practical political solidarity.

       As the IWW slogan goes, ‘an injury to one is an injury to us all’.



More information:
Original statement released by Clydeside IWW following the arrests:https://www.facebook.com/clydesideiww/posts/1446956275339793

Original Statement by Anti-Capitalist Queers following the arrests: https://acqueescotland.wordpress.com/2017/10/26/anti-capitalist-queers-mission-statement/

Anti-Capitalist Queers/ Pride 5 Solidarity page: https://www.facebook.com/ACQueeScotland/
Visit ann arky's home at radicalglasgow.me.uk

Bonnie Scotland.

          It is still too cold for me to get out on the bike, for certain reasons, I'm now a fair weather cyclist, but the bike time is just on the horizon.
           This wee video will keep me going until then.
Visit ann arky's home at radicalglasgow.me.uk

Saturday, 24 February 2018

International Women's Day Glasgow Event.

          An International Women's Day event, initiated by the Equality Officers of the Clydeside Branch of the Industrial Workers of the World, will be held on Thursday, the 8th of March.
            The rally and Walk of Pride will assemble at 4.30 pm at the La Pasionaria statue located on the north bank of the River Clyde next to Glasgow Bridge, opposite the Custom House on Clyde Street.
          This site was chosen because of the prominent role Dolores Ibarruri, called La Pasionaria ('The Passionate Flower') played in the Spanish Civil War of 1936-1939, in defense of the Spanish Republic; and because the statue of her by sculptor Arthur Dooley so beautifully represents the revolutionary woman of courage that she was-- and that many of us strive to be.
            The rally will also honour the Scottish revolutionary, Ethel MacDonald, who was a key figure in the Scottish anarchist movement and in the Spanish Civil War. In 1936 she was sent by the United Socialist Movement to Barcelona where she became world-renowned as the English-speaking reporter for an anarchist radio station. She also remained an activist, daringly organising hunger strikes among the political prisoners, smuggling in letters, and helping some escape .
          The rally will feature a banner that says Celebrate International Women's Day For a World Free from Capitalism and Patriarchy, singing, and an open mic.
         At 5.30 pm we will start our Walk of Pride, with banner and placards, to George Square where we will join up with the Scottish Irish Abortion Rights campaigners for a #Solidarity4Repeal demo at 6 pm-- thus linking it to one of the most critical issues of the day: access to abortion as a woman's right. Throughout the afternoon, we will be proudly expressing our belief that Sisterhood, and Comradeship, are Powerful!
          All are welcome to attend. Please spread the word.
More information is available from

Visit ann arky's home at radicalglasgow.me.uk

Humans, Surplus To Requirements.

       The labels vary, refugees, asylum seekers, migrants, but these labels are usually badges of misery. People, human beings, uprooted forcibly, or fleeing hurriedly, in fear and desperation. According to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, in 2017, 65.6 million people were forcibly displaced worldwide because of persecution, conflict, violence, or human rights violations alone. Think of that figure, approximately the population of the UK hurriedly uprooted and moved on, usually in fear and desperation.
       A river of misery flows from Africa and washes over the graveyard that is the Mediterranean Sea, the inscription “We are not all there – The drowned are missing” is a bitter one. Those who survive that passage find themselves locked in groups at various borders, living in deprivation or in detention centres. Held at the vagaries of the autocratic states, who see them, not as suffering human beings, but as a problem of control. 
      The lot of the refugee, asylum seeker, migrant, is one of being stalked, and if found to be lacking the necessary piece of paper, locked up in some inhumane detention centre, with the constant threat of being thrown back into the hell that they tried to escape. A hell, in most cases, caused by the foreign policy of the host nations, who treat them like cattle. They will be stalked by uniformed gangs of thugs, paid members of the state's protection squad, whose duties are to protect the rich and powerful. These paid minions of the state with complete lack of morality will always obey orders, they are part and parcel of this corrupt and dying system.
       The so called "refugee/asylum seeker/migrant" crisis will only disappear when we end this system of capitalism, that sees humans as productive units or surplus to requirements. This system that spawns wars as a means of profit, that destroys vast swaths of the planet for control of resources, creating that 65.6 million "displaced persons". History tells us a bitter story written in letters of blood, of the dismal failure of this man made system. The future is yet unwritten, we can write that future, a future of humanity, mutual aid, co-operation and sustainability. A future where no one is a refugee, or an asylum seeker, where those power drawn lines known as borders, melt and fade into the dust of history. Only the ordinary people of this world can write that future, but only when they discard the man made cancer that is capitalism and abandon any belief in "leaders" and party "messiahs" who offer to guide them to that "pie-in the-sky" illusion of the promised land. 
Visit ann arky's home at radicalglasgow.me.uk

Thursday, 22 February 2018

Call For Solidarity.

          As you may know there is industrial action planned across the University sector. There will be a picket outside some of the main buildings operated by the University of Glasgow on the Crichton campus on Thursday 22, Friday 23rd, Monday 26th, Tuesday 27th and Wednesday 28th February, from approximately 8.30am-11.30am (though on some days it may well go on longer and start earlier).
         We have also organised a TEACH OUT at the Theatre Royal, Shakespeare Street, Dumfries on the afternoons of Thursday (22nd), Friday (23rd), Tuesday (27th) and Wednesday (28th). The aim, is to show students that we care about education and we are not simply putting our feet up. It is a chance for more informal, experimental, less stressful and collaborative education. It is free for anyone to take part and we are open to more spontaneous events taking place in the space .
         We would love you to show support, if you can, by taking part in visiting the picket or taking part in the TEACH OUT or just dropping by for a tea and a chat and/or publicising the events by passing on the attached flier.

Visit ann arky's home at radicalglasggow.me.uk

Wednesday, 21 February 2018

Privatisation Equals Enclosures.

         It is sad that here we are in the 21st. century, still angry at the inequality, still complaining about being ripped off by our "betters" and at best most groups want to tinker with the system to make it a little bit fairer. A brief look at history tells you that all the reformers up to the present day have done nothing to change that inequality and injustice. Today the rich are richer than ever before, while the poor struggle to stave off deprivation. When will we ever learn.
        It's not as if we have been unaware of the injustice we live under, it has been recorded and catalogued in song and poem, and in the history of the struggles of the ordinary people, but still there is this sad belief, that reform, after centuries of failure, somehow will deliver. We have to wake up to the fact that capitalism cannot be reformed, under this system, any pittances won in struggle can and will be taken back at a later date, note the destruction of the hard won welfare state.
        How many more centuries will we allow our kids to be shackled to poverty, how many more centuries will we carry the burden of the parasitic rich on our backs, while we struggle for survival? The answer is in our own hands, we have the power, the ability, the means and the imagination to destroy this capitalist cancer that is devouring our world, all that is lacking is the will.
         This poem, by an unknown author from the 17th. century, highlights the awareness of injustice back then, but it still applies to our world today. The privatisation of the public assets today, is just a modern version of the enclosures of the past.
The law locks up the man or woman
Who steals the goose off the common
But leaves the greater villain loose
Who steals the common from the goose.
The law demands that we atone
When we take things we do not own
But leaves the lords and ladies fine
Who takes things that are yours and mine.
The poor and wretched don’t escape
If they conspire the law to break;
This must be so but they endure
Those who conspire to make the law.
The law locks up the man or woman
Who steals the goose from off the common
And geese will still a common lack
Till they go and steal it back.

The book "Celebrating The Commons" can be downloaded free HERE:
Visit ann arky's home at radicalglasgow.me.uk

Sunday, 18 February 2018

Spirit of Revolt, Archives of Dissent.

       A wee bit of info about Spirit of Revolt Archive and how you might get involved and support  the growth of this unique archive of dissent.

         If you wish to donate to Spirit of Revolt, no matter how little, it will be very much appreciated. You can do so by  visiting our DONATE page. Thank You. 
Visit ann arky's home at radicalglasgow.me.uk

Thursday, 15 February 2018

What A Wonderful Soundbite, "This Should Not Happen"!!

     Our political ballerinas are all upset, and creating a fuss. The reason, a homeless man died from the cold, on the street, a few yards from the entrance to their privilege club, The Westminster Houses of Hypocrisy and Corruption. How inconsiderate of that homeless person to die there, why didn't he take himself off to one of the poorer districts, then the political ballerinas would not be so upset. 
     The fact that homeless people are dying on our streets, almost on a daily basis, but no song and dance from The "Right Honourable Members" shows their utter contempt for the homeless, only when it is on the doorstep of their privileged palace do they get upset.
      Where have their crocodile tears been for the last three years over which period, the number homeless rough sleepers has increased by 73% in England only. It has been calculated that on any given night during autumn last year, 2017, 4,751 people were sleeping rough on the streets of England alone, this is more than double the figures for 2010. No agitated responses and calls of this is a disgrace, etc.. The sad, pointless and avoidable death of this young man, is replicated across our country, while our privileged political ballerinas, spout sound bites and platitudes, grasp photo opportunities, anything that might further their careers, but nothing changes. They all go home to their very comfortable mansions, and plan their next career move.

        Jon Glackin, a former rough sleeper who is the founder of Street Kitchen, which provides meals for homeless people, urged that the latest death is one of many.
“It’s getting far too common. This one is poignant because it was outside the Houses of Parliament. But I’ve already been to three funerals of homeless people this year. There is no need for this,” he said.
      “It’s beyond breaking point. All services are over-subscribed, services are closing down left right and centre. Everybody seems to think the problem was solved over Christmas. It’s gone out of the public spotlight but it’s becoming worse than ever.”
Read the full article HERE:

       Of course nothing will happen, the process of dispossessing the poor is in full swing. In Greece it is being done savagely, mercilessly, brutally and quickly, elsewhere in the capitalist world it is happening at different rates, some slower than others, but the aim and direction remains the same, the dispossession of the poor. Everything must end up in the the hands of the corporate greed machine and the financial Mafia. Public assets will go for a song to the cabal of CEO and the financial Mafia. Libraries, public swimming baths, health care, social service, will all be run for profit by private companies. The NHS will continue to be squeezed encouraging the public outcry of "something must be done", and then the "think-tank" of "financial experts", business entrepreneurs, CEO, and members of the financial Mafia, will come up with the magic solution, "private capital" is the only way forward. Then the size of your premium will determine the type of care you will get, not the nature of your illness.
      The so called government will then be tasked with its only purpose, keeping civil unrest of the streets. We haven't reach the stage yet where armed Coca Cola militia patrol our streets, so the government will be the keeper of peace to allow the corporate juggernaut to run roughshod over society, shaping it to meet its ever growing appetite for profit. 
      Those who are naive enough to believe that somehow capitalism can be reformed, should take a closer look at Greece. Within a few years, they have destroyed the health service, the education system, trash all incomes for those who can still find work, reigned over rising suicides, sky rocketing substance abuse, crime, poverty and deprivation. And they are not finished yet, they want more from the people of Greece. With that in mind, do you think they are bothered by a few people dying on on streets every other day. The only answer to our problems, the only way to end people dying from cold and hunger on our streets is to get rid of the cause, capitalism.

        Westminster City Council has described the incident as a “very sad incident” and pledged they would work with police to establish the cause of death.
      A Metropolitan Police spokesperson said the death was being treated as “unexplained but not suspicious”. A file will now be prepared for the coroner.
        Are they stupid, we know the cause of death, it was death by capitalist induce homelessness and hunger, or you could say, murder by capitalism, we also know the remedy, get rid of capitalism.
Visit ann arky's home at radicalglasgow.me.uk

Wednesday, 14 February 2018

The Archive of Terror: Mundane Denunciations

        It is sad that so many of the ordinary citizens see it as their duty to become part of the system of repression that is the state. They pass on information about their neighbours, workmates and associates to the authorities, and so strengthen the state's control over the population. They are the unpaid arm of state's repressive machine, they are the people with the cop in their head.
       This is an interesting article about how the minute, mundane pieces if information can be used by the state to operate a reign of terror, aided and abetted by the very people who are being repressed. Today the snippets of information passed to the state authorities adds to the mountain of information gathered by our 24 hour surveillance society, you are guilty 'till proven innocent.
The Archive of Terror: Mundane Denunciations

          On December 22, 1992, acting on a tip off, human rights activist Dr. Martín Almada, and Judge José Agustín Fernández uncovered some five tons of yellowed, raw files detailing institutional kidnapping, torture, disappearance and execution across the Southern Cone of the Americas. The document stash was buried in the back room of a police substation in Lambaré, a suburb of Asuncion, Paraguay. The program, called Operation Condor, in honor of the Chilean secret service (DINA) who first proposed the international system of repression, lasted from 1975 until the late 1980s and is responsible—at least according to the records in the Archive-- for the murder of 50,000 individuals, another 30,000 disappeared, and a total of 400,000 imprisoned, interrogated and likely tortured. The Archive is the mother lode of evil, documented.
          Currently the files are housed in the Palacio de Justicia in Asunción, in a series of small rooms off the main lobby. After the initial discovery and media frenzy, interest in the files from North American or European sources ebbed and remained low. Other than a few South American and European scholars working on articles or advanced degrees the Archive remains painfully untapped as a resource.
          The first encounter with the archive is strange, a quiet room, several computer terminals with access to the entire digitized collection, and large, rolling cases overflowing with the physical files. A few archivists work at computers, one or two students lean into their monitors reading, and there is a centrally placed table, barren and unused.
        ” Excuse me, but where do I start?” I asked the curator Rosa Palau, a women of about sixty, matronly--in charge. She looked up, registered mild shock at the norteamericano in the archive and pulled one large bound book out of the wheeled shelves. "Start here, with the birth of the Condor. If you need anything else, let me know.”
         Pages, pages, pages. Yellowing with time, double hole punched and crammed into large folders. No noticeable system, perhaps location, maybe subject matter, possibly chronological. Hard to say.
         Then the realization, the system, how it works, peeks out from behind the memos, the denunciations, the reports, the interrogations—and its defining characteristic, its distinguishing mark is how dreary it all is. The banality of denunciation after denunciation, the day-to-day reality of writing up the agenda of meetings, a discussion in a classroom, the content of a conversation with a taxi driver. There is a painful sense of the commonplace--to the point of boredom. These weren’t secret agents tracking revolutionaries in the rain, this was the next door neighbor, the work colleague, the owner of the corner store, the cousin, the professor-- sending in unsolicited reports to the police. The cop in everyone’s head.
           Let’s look at some files…
From a meeting of the Agrarian Christian League, and specifically the Agrarian Catholic Youth group, dated 9 June, 1976. Reported by a Sr. Lidio Ortiz, who informs the local Chief of Police that included in the discussion at this meeting were expositions from that most dangerous of books, the Holy Bible. We are told that among the various parables discussed were the stories of the freeing of the children of Israel from bondage in Egypt, the tale of the Good Samaritan, and the raising of Lazarus from the dead. The meeting then took a darker turn and one of the facilitators presented on the organization and goals of the OPM (Military Political Organization) a Tupamaro-like guerrilla group, and one of the main headaches of the Stroessner dictatorship in the 70s and early 80s. Finally, a facilitator closes with the statement that,” the only way for socialism to enter Paraguay is through the Catholic Church.” A prayer, and everyone went home. I haven’t been able to track down what happened to the participants of this sinister meeting yet, but I’m betting that at least the facilitators were detained and interrogated, perhaps even disappeared.
            The archives have some tangential additions as in a note dated 19 March, 1975 denouncing Sr. Pedro Benitez, a resident of Asunción who evidently tried to sell a car which in fact belonged to an unnamed Brazilian. I’m still unsure where this fits in with subversion, or maybe it was just misfiled.
          Of course, denunciation works both ways. A lengthy memo to Pastor Coronel, the Chief of the National Police and a sadistic torturer, discusses numerous instances of corruption by Asunción Police Officer Arturo Hellman. The memo is so long that it has an appendix that includes the following event, Dr. Rafael Ferriera a “comunista dirigente” (communist director) was arrested and being taken to La Tecnica, one of the main torture centers in Asunción. Dr. Ferriera’s wife, however, had different plans for her spouse and offered Officer Hellman 70,000 Guaranís (today about $17USD) for his release. Unfortunately, she only had 30,000 Gs on her at the time. So, she showed up at the prison some time later and paid Hellman the remaining 40,000Gs, and the file seems to indicate that Dr. Ferriera was, in fact, released.
          Finally, cultural workers and events were not immune to denunciation. In a unique entry, a newspaper account of an upcoming performance by the Argentine actress, Maria Rosa Gallo, had been clipped and sent to the local police chief. Among her repertoire for the event in Asunción is the reading of poetry by Sylvain Maréchal, Pablo Neruda, and Jesús López Pacheco. Scribbled in ballpoint pen next to the names of these writers is the cryptic, and relatively accurate, description “poetas comunistas.” Evidently the Asunción police took the denunciation seriously as there is a small typewritten note attached to the clipping indicating that the theater owner was questioned about Gallo’s “judeo-marxist activities.” I haven’t verified yet if the performance was allowed to proceed, or not.
          A scrap of newspaper, notes from a meeting, a corrupt cop, a car sale gone wrong—such is the stuff of denunciation and repression. So seemingly inane as to be laughable, yet in its impact, in the violence, fear, and death that such material produced from such bland sources one is led inevitably to the conclusion that at all times, in all places, where authority exists, repression like this is only one step, one phone call, one email, one thought away. Where there is a nation-state, there is always the possibility of a Condor.

El Errante
Visit ann arky's home at radicalglasgow.me.uk

Tuesday, 13 February 2018

Depleted Uranium, A War Crime.

          I wrote the following article some years ago, to highlight the scandal of depleted uranium, being acted out in Europe, Iraq and elsewhere, and at the Dundrennan firing range near the Solway Firth in south west Scotland, but due to the fact that the US has used depleted uranium in the present illegal Syrian invasion, I thought it would be worth repeating. Once again, the state shows itself, in its savagery of war, to have little to no regard for humanity.

 Remember him? UN ambassador for peace in the Middle East!!!
          Depleted Uranium, (DU) is a radioactive waste product which is also chemically toxic and is used by the military in armour piercing shells and bullets. When it hits a hard target it ignites and aerolizies into a fine mist of radioactive particles, if inhaled or ingested can cause cancer, leukaemia, birth defects, Gulf War Syndrome and other illnesses. It can also enter the food chain through water and/or soil. The wind can send particles in all directions over a wide area. The area near the Dundrennan base in Scotland, where depleted uranium weaponry is tested, has the highest incidence of Leukaemia in the UK.

        The UK MOD claim that they don’t hit hard targets at the range but only fire into the Solway Firth. Around 20-30 tons of DU waste is lying on the Solway seabed with the MOD making no attempt to retrieve this danger. As DU is a radioactive waste, it is in breach of the Convention on the Prevention of Marine Pollution by Dumping Wastes and other Matter, 1972. The MOD are therefore in breach of international law through the dumping of radioactive waste in the Solway Firth. There are also claims that they are creating environmental and health problems by hitting hard targets with DU weapons.
        After the NATO invasion in former Yugoslavia evidence was found that NATO forces used DU on 8 sites. Seven of these sites were in the Republic of Serbia and one in the Republic of Montenegro. Remains of weapons with DU were taken from the soil in these regions and contaminated soil was registered in each of these regions. It is difficult to establish the amount of DU that contaminated these sites. However, Yugoslav Army reports compiled during the war, plus investigation of projectile fragments and data about these types of weapons and how they are used, it can be estimated that NATO fired approximately 3,000-5,000 shells which is the equivalent 1-1.5 tons of uranium 238.
        After the US operation Anaconda in Afghanistan in the region of Tora Bora, it was found that urine samples taken from the local population contained uranium amounts 200 times higher than the population at large.
         These weapons were also used in both attacks on Iraq. The Gulf War 1 in 1991 resulted in 350 metric tons of DU being deposited in the environment and 3-6 million grms of DU being released into the atmosphere. Its legacy to the troops involved in the war, Gulf War Disease, a progressive, incapacitating, multiorgan system disorder, its symptoms include, incapacitating fatigue, musculoskeletel and joint pains, headaches, neuropsychiatric disorders, confusion, visual problems, changes in gait, lose of memory, respiratory impairment, impotence and urinary tract morphological and functional alterations. The understanding of the disease is far from adequate. Uranium isotopes have been detected in urine samples of Gulf War veterans 10 years after inhalation exposure.
          Rageh Omaar, a BBC journalist reporting from Basra stated that Iraqi doctors reported a 20-fold increase in cancers since the end of the 1st Gulf war. Internal contamination with DU isotopes were detected in British, American and Canadian veterans 9 years after inhalation exposure to radioactive dust in Gulf War 1. DU isotopes were also identified in a Canadian veteran’s autopsy samples of lung, liver, kidney and bone. DU danger is illustrated by the following example. In February 1980 a court order from the State of New York forced National Lead Industries, a manufacturer of DU tips, to stop production as they had exceeded the proscribed monthly limits of discharging radioactive material into the air of 150Ci. This value corresponds to 387g of DU. The tip of one shell in a 30mm gun contains 298g. Some time later in a letter to the Atomic Scientists’ Bulletin, Mr Dietz asks if the authorities were worried about discharges that were the monthly equivalent of the particles from 1 or 2 uranium projectiles, why wasn’t the US government worried about the effects of tens of thousands of projectiles fired in the several days of the Gulf War?
        The US Army’s radiology unit suggested press releases should be issued to prevent possible negative international reaction to the use of DU due to public concerns. The report offers the use of tungsten or titanium as an alternative, stating that the only reason to use DU was a cheap way of getting rid of waste. It also outlines ways in which “using arms with depleted uranium is in violation of the basic principles of international law.”

       It is obvious that DU is a highly dangerous substance and is indiscriminate in where it blows and who it affects. The fact that the states that use it are aware of this but continue to use it and put their own troops and the local populations at risk to further their own imperialist gains is just another example of the State’s disregard for the people. War is an arm of the state and it needs ordinary people as cannon fodder but has little interest in the resultant suffering. If we wish to put an end to war and its suffering we have to find a way round the state. We have to eliminate its power by organising at community level, bring power into the hands of the people, work in federation with other communities, creating a world of mutual aid, not profit, of co-operation, not competition, seeing to need, not greed.
Visit ann arky's home at radicalglasgow.me.uk

Friday, 9 February 2018

In This Society Politeness Is A Counter-Revolutionary Weapon,

         In this society politeness is posted as the necessary requisite for a civilised society. However, what if your society is not civilised, but is an exploitative, brutal, greed driven free for all, for the wealthy and powerful. Then, in dealing with that society, your politeness is no more than your display of submissiveness.  Most UK anarchists will know of Ian Bone, today, pensioner Ian is facing the corrupt might of a Qatari royal family, who have served him with an injunction. Let's make sure Ian does not fight this battle alone. Some may not like his methods, but he is always on the side of the ordinary people and deserves our solidarity, after all, like it or lump it, we are in a class war.
      Some praise for an anarchist from an unusual source, The Guardian: 

         This week the Qatari royal family is taking a pensioner who walks with a stick to court to stop him protesting outside the Shard. The Shard is owned by this family via funds held in Jersey. They also own Harrods, the Olympic village and half of One Hyde Park. They reportedly own more property in London than our own royal family.
         At the top of the Shard are 10 flats with the price tag of £50m each, and they are currently empty. This is partly what has upset the protester, who lives on his pension of £154.56 a week. The Qatar royals are taking him and “persons unknown” to the high court on Thursday and also asking him to pay costs. He was served with an injunction because of his intention to protest. He had encouraged supporters to “ask at the door to see the £50m flats”, or “make a reservation at one of the Shard restaurants and ask if you can bring your own food”. If any made it inside he suggested shouting about the injustices and the empty flats. And Grenfell.
        “We also want musicians to come down and play, sing, dance, rant,” he said. “Need yer own amps.”
        He, however, needs no amps. For the pensioner is Ian Bone of Class War who has been protesting about gentrification and social cleansing since the 80s. I adore the man. To me he is the best tabloid journalist this country has ever produced. Provocative, hilarious, scathing.
        His Class War slogans are full of bile and bite and angrily brilliant. Described by actual tabloids at times as a dangerous insurrectionary, Bone is full of life and fun, someone who monsters the pieties of the left and simply refuses to play any game that involves subservience to the right.
          The injunction that was served against him contains a statement about him from the Shard’s head of security who had contacted the Metropolitan police. They are worried about the inherent security flaws of the Shard but they are clearly more worried about Bone and his anarchy. He is described in the statement as “belligerent and uncooperative when interacting with persons of authority, such as police officers and security officers”. Amazing investigative work there! Who would have thought that the founder of Class War was a little awkward? Bone has since pointed out that he has never hit anyone with his stick and has Parkinson’s.
        Bone’s real stick is his words. His attitude. His joy at pointing to obvious wrongs and asking us which side we are on. “I hate dull lefties,” he tells me. “All the miserabilism.” He likes action and shock. And swearing. I loved all those posters that appalled all those who like to be appalled. “Eat the rich.” The one of Diana and Charles with baby William and “Another Fucking Royal Parasite”. He doesn’t do deference or respect. The banners on marches that referred to the Socialist Workers as Social Wankers. Bone’s stance has always been about having a laugh along the way to smashing it all up.
       His father was a butler. His family grew up “in service”. “So I grew up bitter and resentful with a chip on my shoulder,” he tells me gleefully. When he was 15 he wrote off to an address that he found in Punch to find out more about anarchism. “I believed in chaos,” he said. “I then panicked for weeks. I though they might send round a bearded person.” Since then, of course, he has realised that anarchists are just not that efficient.
       Underneath all the sloganeering though, Bone has been protesting about social cleansing all his life. He lived in Grenfell for two years. He knew people who were in the fire. He led “poor doors” protests in the East End in 2014. “If you grow up like I did, that gets you. The tradesman’s entrance.” He saw the developing ghost towers but he sees the working class being squeezed out everywhere. “Who wants another coffee shop or prep school?” he asks of Ladbroke Grove.
Statue of suffragist Millicent Fawcett to be unveiled in April
Read more
        Now that social housing is very much on the agenda, Bone as usual doesn’t want anything to do with Labour. He doesn’t see Corbyn as different to any other Labour leader. Everything for him is about people taking over and running things for themselves.
       Whether this means inciting people to march on Boris Johnson’s house or setting up the South Norwood Tourist Board, Bone is a provocateur, incredibly funny and mostly right. If all this pardoning of suffragettes’ civil disobedience by the political class made you feel as nauseous as it did me, Bone is the antidote. If you value politeness and respectability then Class War may not be for you.
       But on Thursday, I want this anarchist grandad to shake his stick at those Qatari billionaires. He wants, as always, to “push things further”. We should help him. All power to the inimitable Mr Bone.

Suzanne Moore is a Guardian columnist
Visit ann arky's home at radicalglasgow.me.uk

Thursday, 8 February 2018

The Natives Are Revolting, Free Event.

           Just a few days to go, clear your diary, make a mark on the page, reserve your place to attend the Spirit of Revolt free event in The Mitchell Library, The Natives Are Revolting, the Blythswood Room is on the fifth floor of The Mitchell. Please spread the word, as this type of event could become a regular feature of Spirit of Revolt.

         Spirit of Revolt in its continuing process of making the history of the ordinary people's struggles accessible to the public at large, is working in conjunction with The Mitchell Library, on putting on a free event. This event should be of interest to everyone who lives, or has lived in Glasgow or has connections with the city. So mark your diary, phone for a place 0141 287 2999, or pop in to Granville Street and book you spot.
           Spirit of Revolt – Archives of Dissent
Show and Tell
Monday 12th February 2018, 12–2pm
Blythsewood Room, The Mitchell Library, Glasgow
Free event
Limited places, please book on 0141 287 2999 or at Granville Street
reception desk.

The Natives Are Revolting – over 40 years of organising & direct action in Castlemilk and beyond.

       A display of material from the Spirit of Revolt's John Cooper Collection.
John Cooper and Paula Larkin (Project Archivist) will be on hand to answer any
questions and inform the session.


Admission Free

All Welcome.
Please share.
Visit ann arky's home at radicalglasgow.me.uk