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Updated: 17 min 34 sec ago

Kite Line: The Rise of Mass Incarceration, Part Two

Sat, 10/21/2017 - 02:09

The post Kite Line: The Rise of Mass Incarceration, Part Two appeared first on It's Going Down.

Listen and Download Here

Our news this week focuses on the prisoners who are fighting California’s wildfires for as little as a dollar an hour while actually fighting fires. In total, about thirty-eight hundred male and female inmates are fighting fires in California. They constitute around thirteen percent of the state’s firefighters. Their low salaries save taxpayers a hundred twenty-four million dollars a year. But does this say more about the program or about the prison system itself? This is one of the questions we asked Mohammed Scheck of Critical Resistance, a California based Prison abolition organization. Mohammed gave us some insight into how the program is viewed by inmates, politicians, and the media.

We then finish the 2nd part of Elizabeth Hinton’s lecture on the rise of mass incarceration. In her talk, she traces the creation and rise of mass incarceration as a strategy of America’s ruling class. Her historical research, which culminated in a book last year called “From the War on Poverty to the War on Crime,” demonstrates that the explosion of prison construction predated any rise in crime, but was instead a response to the spread of social unrest and black protest. You can hear the first half of her lecture in last week’s episode of Kite Line.

Categories: News

Puerto Rico: Punk Rock Hurricane Relief

Sat, 10/21/2017 - 01:41

The post Puerto Rico: Punk Rock Hurricane Relief appeared first on It's Going Down.

While Trump gave himself a score of 10 for the disastrous relief efforts by the US government in Puerto Rico, punks, artists, queers and freaks of all stripes took matter into their own hands to feed people in their community and give them a place to hang out while they wait for electric power to be restored.

Music by Anti-Sociales

Categories: News

Philadelphia, PA: Antifa Ruins Leif Erikson Day for Keystone State Boneheads

Sat, 10/21/2017 - 01:37

The post Philadelphia, PA: Antifa Ruins Leif Erikson Day for Keystone State Boneheads appeared first on It's Going Down.

For years, neo-Nazis have converged in Philadelphia for ‘Leif Erikson Day,’ and since 2013, they have faced intense opposition. This year, neo-Nazis failed to materialize on the actual day but antifascists and anarchists converged regardless, as the Leif Erikson statue was fabulously redecorated. Neo-Nazis did mobilize however in secret for the following week, and people in Philadelphia were ready to meet them head on, as Philly Antifa reports. 

Acting on an anonymous tip sent by an infiltrator within Neo-Nazi circles, Antifa Philadelphia, Love City Antifa, local anarchists and several other organizations/individuals arrived at Fairmount Park Saturday morning to confirm that Keystone State Skinheads were indeed holding their Leif Erikson Day event.

Even before the Nazis had arrived, there were indicators that the tip was true. Civil affairs and Uniform PD were on the scene around the Gazebo, and a small detachment of Antifa were being shadowed by bike cops. Eventually though, Antifa made visual confirmation of Mark Daniel “Illegal Aryan” Reardon heading towards the Gazebo on Lemon Hill on his red bike.

Reardon met up with Bryan Christopher Sawyer, the model who was fired from his job at the PA Academy of Fine Arts after posting a video of himself harassing a black woman with racist and sexist insults and abuse. Sawyer was repping Red Ice, a Neo-Nazi media company based in Sweden.

Antifa attempted to approach Reardon and Sawyer to discuss some of their activities, but unsurprisingly they elected to run to the safety of Philly Police Department who had begun to congregate up around the Gazebo to undertake their traditional role as protectors for Fascists and Nazis.

“The Thorfinn Karlsefni statue got tarred, glittered, and spray painted before Lief Erikson day.” From Philly Anti-Capitalist

By now, KSS began to arrive in carloads. We blasted the info out on social media in hopes of gathering some more opposition on short notice. Surprisingly, this appears to have been a new low in terms of attendance for KSS for this event. They managed to muster only about 25 Nazis to rally despite having opened up the event to strangers like Reardon and Sawyer and having gathered 40+ for the last 3 years since moving the event underground following a disastrous 2013 event.

Their original plan was to march all the way to the art museum to give speeches in front of the Washington Monument in Eakins Oval which were to be broadcast on Red Ice. Once Antifa began to form up, though, that plan was quickly abandoned in favor of their time honored tradition of saying some dumb shit in a megaphone at the Thorfin Karlsefni Statue while Antifa chanted, shouted at and heckled them. After maybe 20 minutes at the statue, police pushed Antifa down the sidewalk and street to escort the Nazis back up Lemon Hill and to their cars.

“The Antifa fought bravely, using mace and fists to defend themselves against the bones who were armed with various weapons. Two of the Antifa sustained minor injuries. It could have been even worse, but a wedding was being held at the Swedish History Museum. As a result, the KSS after-party ended before it could even begin.”

As the Nazis left, Anti-Fascists blocked Lemon Hill Road to get pictures of the vehicles for future identification of any Fascists yet unknown to us.

The leaked info also gave Anti-Fascists the details on the KSS after party in FDR park, which was to be held in the stone pavilion behind the Swedish History Museum. Anti-Fascists also blasted this info out and small groups began arriving in the area.

This proved to be the one major mis-step Antifa made that day. By just releasing the info and not giving a point for opposition to converge, a roving band of about 15 KSS bones were able to target small groups of Anti-Fascists. One car with 2 Anti-Racist Punx was surrounded by KSS, some of whom were armed with pistols. Fortunately, they were able to de-escalate the situation and were uninjured. Less fortunately, 3 Anti-Fascists who had arrived on the scene to try and help evacuate the Punx were recognized from the earlier demo and attacked by KSS. The Antifa fought bravely, using mace and fists to defend themselves against the bones who were armed with various weapons. Two of the Antifa sustained minor injuries.

It could have been even worse, but a wedding was being held at the Swedish History Museum. Bystanders began recording the incident on their phones which prompted the KSS bones to run (well, one was limping) for their cars and leave the area. As a result, the KSS after-party ended before it could even begin.

10 years on and smaller than ever… Keep it up, yall.

While the Nazis’ event was totally ruined and shut down prematurely both at Fairmount and FDR, we cannot claim full victory when any of our comrades are injured. We also recognize that the situation in FDR park could have gone much worse. This op was planned on almost no notice and questionable intel which presented a real challenge for us. That all said, it’s safe to say that Leif Erikson Day 2017 was a disaster for KSS thanks to the bravery and hard work of local and regional Anti-Fascists.

Here are some pics of the Fascists who showed up Saturday. Our goal is to identify every single participant and expose them as the Nazis they are to their neighbors and co-workers. If you have any information on any of the Fascists who were there this weekend, e-mail us. When you come to Philly to rep KSS, Blood and Honour or any other Neo-Nazi organizations, and attack Anti-Racists, we will make you regret it.

Categories: News

Statement on ‘Great Lakes Antifa’ from Cleveland Antifascist Network

Sat, 10/21/2017 - 00:04

The post Statement on ‘Great Lakes Antifa’ from Cleveland Antifascist Network appeared first on It's Going Down.

People that have been with IGD for a long time know that we aren’t prone to secretarian attacks or the airing of internal movement divisions, however we feel that in this instance, a line in the sand must be drawn. In the last 9 months, many new people have come into our movement, and as people that have been involved for years, we must help point out problem behaviors, regardless of if they are in the work of disruptive elements, informants, or active agents of the State. With that in mind, we share and endorse the following statement from Cleveland. 

We do not undertake this task joyously.  Those in the anarchist milieu that have interacted with people from the Cleveland scene in the last few years know that we are not prone to get involved in personal conflicts and cause “drama,” and avoid it as much as we can.  We are also not very apt to air our collective decisions, particularly when they involve other groups, publicly.  But, with this said, this moment, and this specific situation is an exception to this rule.  Over the past 8 months we have watched as an organization known as Great Lakes Antifa has caused problems, not only within other cities, but within Cleveland as well, following a pattern of behavior that is dangerous and deceptive.  Over the past week this situation has hit a point of critical mass, with threats and recriminations being articulated by a number of different groups, which have forced us to have to articulate an otherwise internal decision publicly, and explain why we will not work with Great Lakes Antifa or anyone associated with them.

Before getting into the specifics of this decision there are some disclaimers that we would like to put forward first.  The decision that has been made internally within the Cleveland Antifascist Network is not a result of the horrendous behavior that we have seen some within GLA engage in over the course of the past week, since the Antiracist Action Network statement was released on October 6, 2017.  The only decision that has been made as a result of the gas-lighting, threats and general abuse exhibited over the past week has been to articulate already existing concerns in public.  This is also not a decision that has been made for personal reasons, or in relation to the dynamics of GLA’s conflicts with groups in other cities.  Our decision to not associate with GLA or any affiliated persons is a decision purely based on behavior we have seen in relation to those in Cleveland, and the risks that this behavior poses to our selves, our friends, our communities, our reputation and our projects; the question of whether we like or dislike members or GLA is irrelevant here.  This has nothing to do with personality conflicts, things that can be loosely called “drama,” or anything having to do with the social dynamics between us and them, and this is not a question of “purism” – an accusation thrown around by GLA consistently –  and one that has been aimed at us in the past.  We will be sticking to our reflections of their general strategy and style of action, and articulating our concerns in relation to this only.

We will also not be releasing personal information about people in GLA, although we have it, and we will not be revealing some of the more damning information that we possess.  At this point we are unsure what the motivations behind some of the more reckless and deceptive behavior that we will outline here are, but do not feel it is appropriate to reveal any information that could put GLA members at risk for repression by the state.  As such, we will reveal as much as we can, and nothing more, while avoiding any additional risk, beyond the risk that GLA poses to itself and others in proximity to it. We will only be discussing what is relevant in relation to the specific behavior that we would like to outline here.

This statement is also not a topic of continued discussion.  We have no desire to debate this.  For the past series of weeks we have been compiling information, doing our research, obtaining verifiable information and discussing events with people from a variety of scenes and political tendencies, and our conclusions are the same now as they were months ago.  We will not be responding to attacks on social media and we will not be engaging with those that wish to debate this.  If you do not like the decision that we have made, then please feel free to not associate with us.  Given some of the information that we have been privy to over the past week we will be taking a position of protecting ourselves from threats that anyone associated with GLA would like to make, and will be immediately documenting and making public within the anarchist milieu, nationally and internationally, any threats that we do receive without responding to those that may choose to resort to threatening tactics.  This is the case for any member of any group associated with the Cleveland Antifascist Network, and any of the people that are within our circles of trust, families, friend groups and associated circles.

Now, with that out of the way, lets get down to it.  The reasons that we have chosen, months ago, to not only not associate with Great Lakes Antifa, but to treat them as a possible threat to our safety, can be broken down into five primary categories of behavior: deceptive behavior, recklessness, horrendous operational security and the illusion of security expertise, inaccurate portrayals of relationships and associations in the attempt to gain entry into groups or scenes, and general shit-talking.  These behaviors will be outlined below, with as many specifics as we deem necessary to reveal.  This behavior began around the beginning of 2017, with our first contact with anyone associated with GLA occurring in February, and has continued throughout the entirety of this year.  The decision to not associate with GLA, just for context, was made internally at the end of April / early May, and has been held internally since that time.  Since that decision was made we have had other interactions with them, but have also been paying close attention to their behavior over the five months since we chose to quietly disassociate from them entirely.  In that time we have not only found that this behavior has continued, but that it has increased in frequency and magnitude, and has hit a point in which our grievances need to be aired to the anarchist milieu at large.

Timeline

“This person claims to be operating a “Resistance network” which had contacts in 27 states, Puerto Rico, the UK, Canada and Finland, and which has access to significant funding, “training and project management” and technical resources.  They also provided their personal cell phone number.”

The initial contact that any members from GLA made with Cleveland, through a Facebook sock puppet account, occurred on February 27th.  This account, which currently uses a username in Russian, but which at the time was under the name “Jessica Marie” and signed their message “Jessica,” sent a message in an attempt to get in contact with someone in Cleveland Antifa. We will refer to this person as “XX” as a shorthand to protect their (presumably) real name. This person claims to be operating a “Resistance network” which had contacts in 27 states, Puerto Rico, the UK, Canada and Finland, and which has access to significant funding, “training and project management” and technical resources.  They also provided their personal cell phone number.

The first record that anyone from Cleveland can find of XX undertaking any political organizing in the Cleveland area is a GoFundMe page created in February of 2017, attempting to raise money to defeat Rob Portman, a state politician, in 2022.  This page was set up by XX, prior to the creation of the Great Lakes Antifa page (which seems to have occurred in March of 2017), who has since become a distinct source of much of the controversy between antifascist crews in the region. This page, which we have found in our research into the group, was set up under an alias, one that has been the medium of much of the communication with groups in Cleveland, with the only update on the page being posted under a verifiable real name of XX.  At this point, contrary to claims that XX had been active in antifascist circles in Cleveland for years, none of us had ever had any contact with this specific person.  We would not make any contact with them until around one month later.

Our first record of real-life interaction with XX occurred on March 4th of 2017 during a counter-demonstration during a pro-Trump rally.  That evening, XX attended an IWW bowling social in town and had some discussions with members of the Red Triangle CLE nonprofit, a group attempting to raise money to open a radical community space in Cleveland. XX told the locals involved in the discussion that they were able to train people in security culture and secure their computers, as well as raise a bunch of money from wealthy liberals.  XX claimed that they were part of a big organization that was operating locally, but knew nothing about other groups operating in Cleveland.  A day later, XX contacted Red Triangle from a profile under the name “Jessica Marie,” but immediately gave their real name (we have verified this) and claimed to be locked up in organizing for Pikeville for the time being.  The following day XX messaged again, and said that they had gotten a call from the office of Senator Sherrod Brown and tried to get the group to attend a meeting about funding.  They then sent along a file claiming to be a “whitepaper” about this organization they were claiming to be a part of.  Upon checking on this organization we found it to be a small organization, with only a handful of members and no discernible sources for the funding that they claim to have access to.

“XX told the locals involved in the discussion that they were able to train people in security culture and secure their computers, as well as raise a bunch of money from wealthy liberals.  XX claimed that they were part of a big organization that was operating locally, but knew nothing about other groups operating in Cleveland.”

Around this time we had started vetting XX, who had contacted the Red Triangle group in late March / early April as a member of Great Lakes Antifa, an organization that has seemingly existed since March of 2017.  During this process we attempted to find any history of their past work, and could not find any.  We went as far as to contact people throughout the region, and to ask whether anyone knew who XX was, and no one had any experiences with them.  We heard through contacts in Louisville that word of the vetting process had reached XX, and they started complaining that they were being “picked on” and said that they wanted nothing to do with the “antifa community” anymore.  At this time the approach that was being taken was one of caution, but still possible engagement.  After their reaction to the vetting process, a common process in this area, suspicions started to be raised about their practices and their interactions with other groups in the region.  Nothing, at this point, however, was severe enough for us to completely cut ties.

In mid-March, after an admin on the Cleveland Antifa Facebook page made contact with XX to discuss Pikeville and transportation to the demonstration.  A meeting was scheduled and during, XX claimed to have experience in doxxing people, a claim that was echoed in their other Facebook messages to others within our circles. XX offered doxxing classes, food, transportation and lodging for Pikeville.  They also mentioned that they help people get resources for wheatpasting and banner drops.  At the end of the meeting, XX handed members of Cleveland Antifa their official business card, which listed their real job, their real name and their office phone number. The group was willing to accept the assistance in getting to Pikeville, but suspicions were beginning to be raised by some around how incredibly open this person was about illegal and pseudo-illegal activities and the connections they purported to have, especially because they were willing to do this and then identify with their real name.

Following this meeting there was a short discussion about logistics for coordinating the counter-demonstration to the white supremacist convergence in Pikeville.  Two days before Cleveland was to leave for Pikeville, XX told people from Cleveland that “basecamp” in Pikeville was compromised, that no one should go, and then cut off contact.  They then tried to get people from Cleveland to post this information to a group chat for the organizing of “basecamp” which people from Cleveland were a part of, but XX was not. Cleveland Antifa checked the information to others involved in organizing “basecamp” before posting it to the wider group, and were assured that this information was incorrect.  When asked where this information came from they said it came from Nashville, but when checked with people from Nashville this was also shown to be incorrect.  When confronted about this in Nashville, XX started arguing with others in the discussion, deleted their social media profiles and disappeared. Over the past week, we have been privy to a statement that was being drafted within Nashville Antifa, a crew very close to and comprised of many of the same people as GLA, in which they claim that this claim stemmed from someone in Cleveland outing the real name of this specific GLA member to the people running “basecamp.”

We will discuss this more later, but, in brief, the person being accused of providing XX’s real name to the organizers did not in fact know their real name; although XX was not that careful about what their real name was, having provided business cards to people in Cleveland, identifying with their real name to others in Cleveland and posting the GoFundMe page under both their assumed name and updating it under their real name.

After this incident, and the general behavior of XX and others in GLA around Pikeville, those within the Cleveland Antifascist Network decided that we were not going to have anything further to do with GLA or anyone affiliated with them, but at the time decided that we would keep this to ourselves and not go public with our experiences.  Throughout the summer we had no contact with XX or anyone else affiliated with the group.  This stayed the case until August 19th, when Burning River Anarchist Collective hosted a community solidarity event in the Slavic Village neighborhood with antifascists in Charlottesville.  This was a community oriented event, one that was meant to provide a space in which community organizing could be done around antifascist struggle.  During this event 4 members of GLA, including XX, showed up to the event in full black bloc, wearing body armor, held up a banner, snapped a picture and then promptly left.  Locally, this raised significant suspicions about the direction and general strategy of GLA, leaving many of us feeling as if their approach was generally reckless.

This prompted an argument, which played out over Facebook, between XX and a member of Cleveland Antifa.  The argument was started when the member of Cleveland Antifa criticized GLA for showing up to a community event and being generally intimidating, questioning their strategic decisions in relation to the event.  XX got immediately defensive and then cut off the conversation.  We have come to find out that this prompted a post on a Facebook page run by another member of GLA, which we will call YY.  In this post YY accuses an unknown group, which is clearly Cleveland Antifa, of being “purists” and fostering division, for merely being mildly critical of their approach to a community event.

Also, we came to find out in the weeks following this incident that XX was present at an anti-police brutality demonstration in Euclid, Ohio, an inner ring suburb of Cleveland.  During this event XX discussed purchasing weapons and body armor for a group of people.  They also stated that they were the “real antifa” and that “other antifa in Cleveland are unreliable and cannot be trusted.”  They then tried to recruit a number of people at the event.  This fits a general pattern that we have become aware of in the time since the Burning River event, in which XX will approach people either that live in suburbs, or that are on the fringes of activity in Cleveland, offering to provide training, and talking openly about purchasing “weapons” and body armor.

We have also become aware, since this time, that XX has tried to claim that they had done a lot of work with people in Burning River Anarchist Collective, in discussions with local liberals, even though Burning River only knows XX through showing up at their event, and had no interaction with them there.  A member of GLA, who we will refer to as ZZ, attempted to use one former member of Columbus ARA as a vouch with a member of the Cleveland Antifascist Network, even though this person had never met ZZ.  ZZ then started posting evidence of illegal actions directly to the Cleveland Antifa page on Facebook, encouraging members to participate.  We have heard that a person claiming to be in GLA has attempted to use Cleveland antifascists as a vouch in an attempt to get involved in Cincinnatti. We have also become aware that XX has moved to the area.  Since then we have been in contact with a number of people that have interacted with XX, who all have similar stories.  In this common narrative XX will show up at some sort of event in the suburbs, talk to the people there and then convince them that they should engage in low-level illegal activities, while convincing them that they can help with information security and resources.

“In this common narrative XX will show up at some sort of event in the suburbs, talk to the people there and then convince them that they should engage in low-level illegal activities, while convincing them that they can help with information security and resources.”

Since the ARA Network statement about GLA and Nashville Antifa we have become aware of a number of other incidents that are both disturbing and in keeping with a pattern of general retaliation, deception and recklessness.  The Cleveland Antifa Facebook page reposted the ARA Network statement about GLA, and immediately began to get attacked by trolls, claiming either to be in GLA, or to “know people” in GLA.  We have heard that XX claimed to have had a four-hour long meeting with Columbus ARA, during which they worked out their differences; we checked with Columbus ARA and this meeting never took place.  Through talking to people in other cities we have become aware of a general pattern of XX and others claiming affiliation with It’s Going Down and Idavox, both of which have only had passing discussions with them on Facebook (and with Idavox specifically interacting with them in an attempt to mediate the conflict between Nashville people in the wake of the release of the statement).  It has also become clear that GLA has a general pattern of isolating marginally connected radical-leaning people in a city through claiming that known groups vouch for them, then speaking ill of local antifascists and attempting to get people that they have isolated to engage in risky activity, even to the point of providing weapons and body armor.

Needless to say, this is a disturbing pattern; below we will be outlining the specific issues we have had with their behavior since the beginning of the year. In hearing these stories, having these experiences and generally coming to understand the scale of the disruption XX and others in GLA have caused throughout the region the decision was made to break our silence about this situation and explain our decision to not work with GLA or anyone affiliated with the group.  Again, this is a long standing decision that was made before our interactions with those in other cities about the subject.  We want to reiterate that we are unclear as to the motivations for this behavior, and do not want to openly speculate about this at this time.  We would just like to encourage other to approach GLA with extreme caution, to not necessarily take what they are saying at face value and to confirm any claims that they make with others that are involved.

Reasons Recklessness

The first thing that struck people in Cleveland as being amiss with XX and their close associates in Great Lakes Antifa that we have interacted with was the way in which they were 1) willing to both divulge details about their group, or what they said were details about their group, and 2) encourage others to do illegal actions in contexts in which their connections to said people were superficial and often did not extend beyond the immediate discussions they were having at the time.  This is coupled with a tendency to engage in a sort of aesthetic militancy, wherein GLA (or specifically XX) portrays itself as being “the most militant,” while not actually focusing on the proper or strategic action for the moment.

“This is coupled with a tendency to engage in a sort of aesthetic militancy, wherein GLA (or specifically XX) portrays itself as being “the most militant,” while not actually focusing on the proper or strategic action for the moment.”

The reality is that – for all of the talk and aesthetics of militancy put forward by XX and others within GLA, there is very little actual action to show for it.  They have been present at some actions, carried out some minor direct actions within march contexts (which they then would openly admit to online) and engaged in wheatpasting campaigns.  Beyond this, there is very little actual action to show for all of the work that they are claiming to have done.  Now, we aren’t saying this to discredit their militant credibility as “not doing enough” – rather we are concerned that, despite realtively little engagement in seriously disruptive or confrontational action, they are openly encouraging a sort of reckless militancy based in the idea that presenting as militant, and dressing the part, can compensate for a lack of strategic understanding of the context of actions, the wishes and desires of strategic unity from local organizers (both inside and outside of the anarchist / leftist milieu) or the ways that these impact local dynamics.  They tend to engage in this sort of aesthetic militancy in ways that are completely out of context for the actions that they are participating in, needlessly escalating dynamics and pushing community members outside of the closed bubble of the anarchist milieu away.

“They tend to engage in this sort of aesthetic militancy in ways that are completely out of context for the actions that they are participating in, needlessly escalating dynamics and pushing community members outside of the closed bubble of the anarchist milieu away.”

This generally demonstrates not only a complete misunderstanding of when militant resistance is called for, but also betrays a complete lack of understanding of localized strategic approaches to resistance, and the reasons that certain activities may be undertaken in said contexts. This lack of strategic awareness, if combined with rhetorical and aesthetic militancy and a lack of experience, creates the opportunity for newer participants to begin to engage in actions that they are not prepared without an understanding of the possible consequences of that action. By focusing entirely on the need to immediately escalate, without any attention to the strategic imperatives of specific forms of action, GLA risks putting the newer, less engaged and less experienced people within the fringes of the local scenes they tend to recruit their members from needlessly at risk of victimization by the state or our adversaries on the right.

GLA’s open talk of weapons, their tendency to show up to actions in body armor, and their tendency to present as “the most militant” also paints a huge target on their back in relation to the state.  This makes GLA a clear target for infiltration by federal agencies and local law enforcement.  While this would not be a reason to cease working with a group in and of itself, their tendency to engage in the aesthetics of escalation, combined with horrendous operational security (which we will talk about in a bit) and a tendency to work with newer and less experiences members of a community, presents a significant risk to those around active members of GLA – enough so that we in Cleveland are willing to go on record stating that we will be keeping our distance.

Horrendous Operational Security and the Illusion of Security

Since our first contacts with XX, and later with GLA formally, people in Cleveland have been generally concerned at the absolutely despicable operational security that the group has demonstrated.  The initial contact with XX resulted in them sharing information about some sort of secret organization that supposedly existed, being told the real first name of the person reaching out, and being told that they could provide money, support and information security training to individuals that they had not met or previously interacted with in any capacity.  This was followed by XX providing people in Cleveland with proof of their employment and real name in the form of a verifiably-true business card to one person in Cleveland Antifa, as well as revealing numerous details about their personal life to others with whom they have no reason to trust outside of a naive general sense of leftist camraderie.  XX and others in GLA have also been relatively open with near-strangers (including their own members, many of whom it is evident have not met each other in real life outside the context of anonymous masked action) about illegal and semi-illegal actions to others within the Cleveland Antifascist Network.  They have also generously extended this indiscretion to people outside the anarchist milieu, engaging liberal organizations in the area with talks of procuring weapons and body armor for near-strangers on their initial contact with said people.

“What is even more concerning is that XX has portrayed themselves as someone with a sort of expertise in operational security and information security practices.”  

What is even more concerning is that XX has portrayed themselves as someone with a sort of expertise in operational security and information security practices.  In the interest of being generous to the remains of their reputation, let us just say that when a person tries to convince others that writing their name on Facebook in Russian Cyrillic will protect them from doxxing – and who posts updates to online political fundraisers under their real name, even after creating the campaign under an assumed name sock puppet account – well, it doesn’t particularly inspire confidence in their capacity to teach good operational security.  It is clear that outside of the use of Signal chats, GLA carries out most of its organizational discussions over Facebook – a completely monitored and effectively compromised platform which has a history of collusion with law enforcement.  Members of the group are also completely willing to provide their personal contact information to people that they have no relationship with, and who they have only met online.

There are numerous problems here which would be enough for most of us to want to keep distance from a group of people.  However, the most troubling thing about these practices, and the almost total lack of any coherent operational security practices, is that XX attempts to convince others that they are some sort of expert in operational and information security.  This creates the idea that by following the practices that XX recommends that others will be able to protect themselves from surveillance, which is not only far from the case, but also which creates a false sense of security allowing for the open discussion of illegal actions on open social media platforms.  Not only are their security practices horrendous, but this false sense of security has made it incredibly easy to map out members of the group, find personal information, and even to get information and documents from people that participate in “private” Facebook groups about internal GLA operations.  From what we have seen, the tendency to default to Russian usernames, the shifting of sock puppet accounts while still maintaining the same circle of friends, the thinly-veiled opacity through which XX and others in GLA frame their discussions about internal matters with those outside of the group, gives off the air of people attempting to build opsec around what people who think they know about opsec – but do not actually understand opsec – think opsec is.

If it was this easy for people in Cleveland – who work full-time jobs, have kids and busy lives outside of antifascist work – to gain this much information about GLA and their membership in the span of just over a week of actual info-gathering, then we shudder to think about what the federal agencies have found out should GLA’s aesthetic militancy have alerted them to a potential threat.  When combined, the tendency to engage in public declarations of militancy, to openly talk about procuring weapons and body armor as declared enemies of the existence of the state, and to both encourage and brag about illegal activity, their failure to even impose a modicum of functional operational security is clearly a threat to anyone in or adjacent to this crew.

Deceptive Behavior and Inaccurate Portrayals of Relationships and Associations

It is almost impossible to know where to begin, given the layers upon layers of accusations that have been thrown back and forth between GLA and their detractors.  So, with that said, we will keep this discussion to the specifics of the local situation and our experiences with XX and GLA.  Our mistrust of XX initial was created by their willingness to make completely over-the-top claims about their access to seemingly unlimited resources and the connections that they claimed that they had.  In all of the research that we had done, and in all of the discussions that occurred, no specific evidence of the existence of this network of groups, nor of the resources that they claimed to possess, were ever produced or discovered.  For some of us, this raised suspicions immediately that not everything was at it was being presented to be by XX and their fellow crew members.

“When we take this tendency to exaggerate their connections with others in the light of a tendency to react to being called out, AS WELL AS a tendency toward building layers and layers of deception on top of one another, it becomes impossible for us to trust anything that XX, or anyone else in GLA, has to say.”

The experiences that Cleveland Antifa had around Pikeville essentially cemented that suspicion.  XX, after having discussions with people in Cleveland about funding their travels to Pikeville, became difficult to get a hold of for most of the two weeks leading up to the action.  When contact was finally re-established, XX asked someone from Cleveland Antifa to relay a message claiming that the Pikeville “basecamp” was compromised to an internal organizers list from which XX was intentionally excluded.  This claim was found to be entirely baseless, and XX vanished upon being confronted by organizers and offered no explanation to their contact with Cleveland Antifa.  We have been privy to a currently unreleased Nashville Antifa internal document, which is meant to explain some of the conflicts with ARA Network from their perspective, in which they make the claim that a person traveling with the Cleveland Antifa crew told people at “basecamp” XX’s real name.  The problem is (outside of the fact that they essentially dox this person by showing their real Facebook username in a screenshot in this document) the person in question was unaware of XX’s real name at the time, which we have confirmed with the person in question.  The name given to people in “basecamp” was in fact the assumed name that XX used freely with many of the people they interacted with.

As stated earlier, we have also been able to track a number of other deceptive claims that XX and others close to them in GLA have made around their associations and pasts in the antifascist and anarchist milieu.  XX claimed, for example, they had done a lot of work with Burning River Anarchist Collective , despite only meeting a couple of members of the group once and not actually talking to them about the group.  We found that a member of GLA, who we refer to above as ZZ, attempted to use their connection to high profile members of Columbus ARA as a vouch to get involved in Cleveland crews besides GLA; when we checked in with Columbus ARA, few people knew who this person was, and everyone that did said that they were completely unreliable and not to be trusted in an organizational capactiy.

As stated above, we have come to find out that XX claimed that they had a four-hour long meeting with Columbus ARA about the ARA Network statement, a meeting which never happened, and we checked with literally everyone involved with Columbus ARA.  We have seen evidence of GLA claiming to have a relationship with It’s Going Down, based off seemingly nothing more than a handful of Facebook discussions.  GLA has also claimed this relationship with Idavox, which again consists of a few Facebook conversations and people within Idavox attempting to mediate conflicts after the ARA Network statement.  Another member of GLA (reference them as QQ) attempted to use supposed connections in Cleveland (which do not exist) to gain access to people in Cincinnatti.  XX has also used a similar ploy, saying that they have been involved in the Cleveland scene for years, which is not the case, in an attempt to either convince others to work with them or to gain access to people in other cities.

Time and time again, people in Cleveland have been contacted and asked to look into these claims, and every time – literally every time – we have found these claims of support and relationships to either be completely overblown, or entirely nonexistent.  When we take this tendency to exaggerate their connections with others in the light of a tendency to react to being called out, AS WELL AS a tendency toward building layers and layers of deception on top of one another, it becomes impossible for us to trust anything that XX, or anyone else in GLA, has to say.

General Shit-Talking

Regarding the aforementioned statement about “purity politics” in the wake of our criticism of GLA at the Charlottesville memorial, we would like to take this opportunity to eschew pettiness and rather focus on their over-the-top defensiveness in the context of the other patterns of behavior exhibited by XX and their close associates in GLA, which paints a significantly more disturbing portrait of their conduct with those who question their methods or legitimacy as an organization. The initial issue here is that GLA has a tendency to take justifiable strategic critique and well-meaning discourse as an assault on their character, and react to it in over-exaggerated, overly-politicized ways, rather than addressing it within the context of the critique.  This approach tends to mean that minor criticisms, like a criticism of them showing up to a community event in body armor, makes them unbridgeable chasms of absolute political difference couched in absolutist terms.  In this specific case, we – a crew that spans tendencies from platformists to nihilists –  was accused of “purism” simply for implying that GLA may want to take a different approach to community – and declaratively non-militant – events.

“If we take these incidents individually, none of them add up to any specific necessity to inform the community at large.  But, when taken in aggregate, a problematic pattern emerges…”

The problem extends beyond this however.  In discussions with others locally that have had interactions with GLA, one common thread appears over and over again.  In all of these interactions we are told that XX has told others that all of the antifa and anarchist groups in Cleveland are unreliable, untrustworthy purists that should not be bothered with, and that GLA are the only group worth working with.  This generates a situation in which newer, and often younger, participants in the anarchist milieu in northern Ohio are isolated from older, more established groups, and compelled to work with XX and GLA, without any context to make that decision.  The conversations that tend to result, which often involve confused new participants wondering why we are awful would be humorous, if the reasons for their perceptions did not all lead back to the same person, at which point it just seems malicious and an attempt to construct a bubble of isolation around their recruits which renders them immune to criticism from what they consider bad actors trying to sabotage their “Herculean efforts” toward a revolutionary uprising. As we have come to understand over the past couple of weeks, XX went about trying to recruit new participants in the radical scene through a process of shit-talking local established anarchists and offering weapons, body armor and training for these new participants.  When combined with exaggerating their operational security and information security prowess, as well as making false claims as to the relationships that they have with other groups, the conclusion has been made, and was made long ago, to not associate with XX and others within GLA.

End

Though this statement may seem long – and fucking believe us, it is –  keep in mind that this is what has arisen out very limited interactions with XX and others in GLA in both Northeast Ohio and the wider region in which GLA operates.  We do not even have an extensive relationship with XX or anyone in the group – many of us have never met them or anyone in their crew – and this extensive recounting of their behavior has been the result of glancing and tangential interactions.  What has been displayed in these limited experiences, as well as the experiences with others, is a disturbing pattern of recklessness, deception, horrendous operational security, a tendency toward an unfocused militancy and an approach which isolates new participants and places them in a potentially insular and risky environment.

“This is not to say that everyone in GLA is unable to be worked with, but locally we have decided that we will not work with many of those within GLA, or the organization as a group.”

If we take these incidents individually, none of them add up to any specific necessity to inform the community at large.  But, when taken in aggregate, a problematic pattern emerges – not just in our own community but also in the context of incidents of nearly identical behavior reported by established antifascist groups throughout the region that have, for one reason or another, grown to distrust XX, YY and any number of their comrades who take part in their activities. This is not to say that everyone in GLA is unable to be worked with, but locally we have decided that we will not work with many of those within GLA, or the organization as a group.  We would highly encourage others to take the same approach, at least until the situation can be clarified, or steps are taken within the organization to remedy the conflict, pain, mistrust and damage that they have caused here in northern Ohio.

-Cleveland Antifascist Network

Note: Cleveland Antifa and the Cleveland Antifascist Network are not the same organization.  Cleveland Antifa is one group within the wider network that is the Cleveland Antifascist Network.

Categories: News

Call to Action: Murfreesboro, Tennessee October 28th

Fri, 10/20/2017 - 23:35

The post Call to Action: Murfreesboro, Tennessee October 28th appeared first on It's Going Down.

On October 28th, neo-Nazis from all over the region plan to hold a White Lives Matter rally in Murfreesboro, TN. Matthew Heimbach, the leader of the Traditionalist Worker Party, has stated that attendance is required for all Nationalist Front members.

These groups will initially meet in Shelbyville Tennessee (where another counter-demonstration is planned) and migrate to their permitted march which will be held in the Town Center Square of Murfreesboro, Tennessee.

The Nationalist Front consists of League of the South, Traditionalist Worker Party, and the National Socialist Movement, but they are also planning to bring other neo-Nazi groups such as Identity Evropa and Anti-Communist Action, as well as expecting local support. We anticipate a large crowd on their side, and we need your help to outnumber them.

We have all witnessed, either in person or through the media, these cowards spew their message of white supremacy, misogyny, and genocide while openly floating the threat of physical violence at every event they attend.

We are asking that people across the US join us in defending Middle Tennessee and preventing the rise of fascism. Bring your bodies, your voices, your comrades, and your skills to meet us at the square at 11 AM on Saturday, October 28th, intersection of South Maple and South Public Square. To contact local anti-fascist organizers, to find out about housing options, and to connect with others who are coming, email DefendMidTNAction@protonmail.com.

#DefendMidTN #O28
Categories: News

A Report-Back from the Rally Against Rapist Police

Fri, 10/20/2017 - 22:44

The post A Report-Back from the Rally Against Rapist Police appeared first on It's Going Down.

The following report back details a recent march in Brooklyn against rapist police officers. View the original call out here

In response to the neoliberal recuperation and commodification of “feminism,” we are calling for a prominent militant anarchist femme presence on the left. Feminist CEO’s and irony bros can fuck off. Combating patriarchy and sexual violence does not include whimsical “grlpwr” tote bags or chapo trash house donations. We uncompromisingly intend to liberate ourselves by supporting a diversity of tactics. This may manifest in a plethora of ways including: survivor support networks, safer spaces policies and survivor led accountability measures, rapist beat downs, and prison abolition to name a few.

Black, brown, indigenous, trans, and gender non-conforming lives are at stake. Sex workers and undocumented people’s lives are at stake. Physical and sexual violence are daily dangers to our comrades in the streets. The odds of experiencing sexual violence are only magnified for the incarcerated. It is imperative that we not only attack the systems that threaten our communities, but that we provide support through retributive and transformative justice to survivors.

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Our aim is to build a large and uncompromising anti-rape campaign in NYC and beyond, because our liberation and our lives depend on it. For this reason, we responded to the repulsive but unsurprising news that an eighteen year old was handcuffed, raped in a parking lot, and pushed out of an unmarked vehicle by two NYPD detectives, Edward Martins and Richard Hall who are now on desk duty as paid rapists. Similarly, on October 10th, a Bronx police officer was indicted on charges for paying a 15 year old girl for sex and taping it. Just hours before our demo, another Bronx officer was arraigned in criminal court for flashing his junk to 7 and 12 year old girls. We know all of these officers will rape again. This is not just the NYPD. If reported assaults happen so frequently within just this one department, how many nameless survivors must exists from other departments? The police tradition of using sexual violence as tyranny dates back to its inception. They will not stop until we demolish them.

On October 17th, we arrived at Calvert Vaux Park where Anna Chambers was kidnapped and handcuffed by the two rapist pigs. Unsurprisingly, they had five squad cars in the parking lot along with unmarked vehicles and undercover rapists on foot patrolling the area. We unfurled our banners and read our statement in solidarity with Anna Chambers and all victims of police sexual violence. From there, we marched down Cropsey Ave, the road where the rapist pigs drove Anna, passing the parking lot where they raped her. The entire way, we read out the recent violent sexual abuses by the NYPD.

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“In 2015 there were 131 allegations of sexual abuse against Riker’s staff. This year, New York City agreed to pay $1.2 million to settle a lawsuit brought by two female inmates who accused a C.O. of serial sexual abuse.” This is no isolated incident. This summer, at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn, nine female inmates came forward to tell of their serial rape at the hands of two lieutenants and an officer. This report surfaced after MDC passed their audit for the prison rape elimination act “with flying colors.” We know that rape is rampant but underreported in the jails and prisons. We know that police threaten prisoners with deportation, extended sentences and continued physical and emotional abuse. We know reform is not going to stop the systematic sexual abuse by the rapist police. It was both empowering and blood boiling to hear their abuses echoing down the streets as the rapist police made attempts to contain our march. We amplified our voices in solidarity with the courageous femmes that have come forward and for those who have been silenced. We want all victims of sexual violence to know that we believe you.

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They knew where we were headed. They were hosting an “open community meeting” at the 60th precinct, (the precinct responsible for patrolling the area of the recent rapes by rapist detectives Martins and Hall) where they could railroad community attempts to hold them accountable for being rapists, protecting rapists, and paying their rapist brothers. We shouted, “This year, Officer Michael Golden of the NYPD was discovered to have raped and sexually assaulted undocumented sex workers working in New York on the NYPD’s tab. As last reported, five of the six women went back to their countries of origin.” We know the police use the “justice” system as a weapon against the most marginalized.

Our aim was to provide an alternative assembly for the community they are terrorizing. As expected, they had the precinct barricaded off and had moved the “open community meeting” to a secret location. Unfortunately for them, we had received intel of the new location from a comrade. This secret location ended up being in a unit in the same building as Foxy’s Gentleman Club on Surf Avenue. The symbolism was not lost on us.

Regardless, we marched there, letting it be known that “this year, it came to light that female correctional officers at the Bronx Juvenile Detention Center were sexually assaulting underage male detainees, coaxing them with alcohol, candy, extra food, and phone privileges.” And, “In 2015, two officers of the NYPD special victims unit sexually assaulted a woman whose crime they were tasked to investigate, calling her their ‘favorite victim’ and harassing her via phone from across the country for months”. Our mic checks regarding these incidents were constantly interrupted by the trains passing overhead. The police found it humorous that we were unable to contiguously express our anger toward their seemingly endless number of rape cases. But we know they were petrified of our power. Of course they denied our entrance to the “open” meeting and strategically moved it to an inaccessible location unfit for communication. They are scared to hear the stories of survivors because they are rapists themselves. They know they cannot escape our wrath.

"Cops don't stop rape b/c cops are rapists!" Speakout in Coney Island Brooklyn against rapist cops. pic.twitter.com/vXebTQM45u

— Ash J (@AshAgony) October 18, 2017

We know the NYPD is well protected by their lawyers and superiors. We know they will take any measure and pay any price to protect their fellow rapists. Since we were barred from entering their “open” meeting, we held a community meeting of our own outside. We moved where we could be heard. We found a location far enough from the trains, but close enough so the police could still hear us. And to the beautiful backdrop of a shadowy ferris wheel, brave femme comrades shared their harrowing experiences with sexual abuse and police inaction.

One comrade likened the epidemic of rape to the pillaging of indigenous land. There is a clear delineation from the Indigenous Genocide and the slave economy to the continued epidemics of mass incarceration and rape culture that disproportionately violate our black, brown, and indigenous comrades. There are clear lines tracing the violation of our trans and gender nonconforming comrades to cis-male homophobia and misogyny. These forces are the lifeblood of the police. We acknowledge that fact, and we revel in the knowing feeling that we will win.

Police are rapists and domestic abusers at home and on the job #NYPD #ACAB https://t.co/Jac8VahAg4 pic.twitter.com/UN3BDqTyOn

— MACC NYC (@macc_nyc) October 17, 2017

Together, we can dismantle the violent systems that oppress us all. Our liberation depends on our collective commitment to burning this racist heteropatriarchy to the ground. We do not expect the state to administer restorative justice to our survivors. Cops don’t stop rapists because cops are rapists. We must be thoughtful, rigorous and committed in our support of survivors. While the pigs are throwing cum on their female rapist counterparts and extorting them for sex and money, we call on our cis-male comrades to bridge the gaps between theory and praxis. Groups like Fuck it, Masc off! must continue to deconstruct their masculinity and center anti-rape and anti-sexism in their struggle. This is non-negotiable.

Although the timing of our demonstration fell in the middle of the #MeToo campaign, we emphasize to all that this is a committment that must outlast the lifecycle of a trending hashtag. In an effort to respect survivors and prevent cops from interfering in our efforts, we need to be more militant on the streets, more diligent in our care, and stealthier on the internet. We compel you to endorse this sentiment in your personal lives and in your affinity groups.

In the wake of our march, one online rape apologist voiced his concern that we are fostering a culture of “lynch mobbing” men. If you are worried that we will come for you, then you should most definitely check yourself. We know who the rapists are. We know who the harassers are. You are not welcome. If you stand with us, you need not be afraid. Fear the replication of systems we aim to dismantle in our radical spaces. Affinity grows out of our unrelenting commitment to each other, and it feeds our movement.

Femmes, we are unified in our suffering. We are filled with rage. We love each other. We are dancing on the grave of Hugh Hefner. We are going to march the Harvey Weinsteins of the world to the slaughterhouse. We will not be dominated. Fuck the patriarchy! Fuck white feminism! Fuck the police! Fuck misogynists, racists, TERFS and SWERFS! In solidarity with sex workers, incarcerated people and all survivors of sexual violence, KILL ALL RAPISTS!

Cover photo from @huntedhorse and inspired by recent anti-frat march in Minneapolis
Categories: News

#NoNazisAtUF: Lessons for the Struggles Ahead

Fri, 10/20/2017 - 22:11

The post #NoNazisAtUF: Lessons for the Struggles Ahead appeared first on It's Going Down.

GAINESVILLE, Florida — The University of Florida and the surrounding community came out in force Thursday, October 19th, to show Richard Spencer and his cadre of white nationalists that white supremacy would not be given a safe place in our state. Before the sun set, cowardly fascists would flee the wrath of UF, Spencer would decry the “free speech” event attendees as “babies” for speaking over him, and Tyler Eugene Tenbrink—accompanied by William Henry Fears and Colton Jean Fears—would shoot at protesters on the corner of 34th and Archer. Self-defense, community organizing, and mutual aid remain our only hope for a future without masters, for a world built on a foundation of liberty, equality, and solidarity.

Gators Chomp Nazis

School spirit.

At the request of local organizers in Gainesville, we adopted a broad-based strategy to build popular support for the day’s resistance. Learning from the lessons of Auburn, Boston, and Berkeley, we eschewed the black bloc tactic in order to show community members that we were just like them: average, angry human beings with hearts that burned for justice. We say this in order to explain that while the black bloc can be an immensely strategic resource, at times it can also alienate the local populace. Tactically, we must be good listeners and show solidarity to our comrades who understand their communities more intimately than we ever could. By being responsive to community organizers’ desires, we can build broad-based movements that are inviting to sympathetic liberals and progressives while simultaneously being effective and militant in deplatforming fascist and racist organizers.

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Some street art on 34th.

“A particularly memorable occasion involved a local skinhead who’s been known in the community for instigating violence. After sieg heiling several times, calling people of color racial slurs, and referring to the protesters as “animals,” he was dealt a rather ferocious blow that has taken the internet by storm.”

Throughout the day, anti-fascists chased Richard Spencer’s supporters away from the event. A particularly memorable occasion involved a local skinhead who’s been known in the community for instigating violence. The Nazi punk marched into the protest zone, decked out in scarlet suspenders and a white shirt littered with hand-drawn swastikas. After sieg heiling several times, calling people of color racial slurs, and referring to the protesters as “animals,” he was dealt a rather ferocious blow that has taken the internet by storm. Anti-fascists proceeded to chase the skinhead from the scene, as blood drizzled from his nose and he wore his self-satisfied smirk. When we reached the edge of the “designated protest zone”—an area in which a wide arrange of materials were “banned” from entry—the militarized police force pulled out tear-gas launchers and loaded up rubber bullets, ordering us to disperse.

Richard Spencer was consistently drowned out by the fury of protesters, who managed to weasel their way into the event and organize a series of chants like, “Fuck you, Spencer!” and “Go home, Spencer!” Despite the fact that Identity Evropa members stood at the gates, despite the fact that Spencer’s National Policy Institute was given full control of ticket distribution and were even allowed to decide which journalists were permitted to attend the “free speech” event, local organizers ensured that the crowd inside the event was overwhelmingly populated by anti-fascist demonstrators who proceeded to silence Spencer and his crooked cronies, Mike “Enoch” Penovich and Eli Mosley.

"F– you, Spencer" chant takes over as he is introduced. "Thank you for coming," he says. #SpencerAtUF pic.twitter.com/XIYY7trQjB

— Claire McNeill (@clairemcneill) October 19, 2017

Spencer decried the crowd on several occasions, saying we’d, “Intimidated people who wanted to be here…unlike you childish antifa.” Unable to get scarcely a word in, Spencer was forced to end his event early. Although $500,000 had been spent on security for his event, in trademark fashion, Spencer threw a tantrum saying, “Do you not want to hear something, poor little babies?”

Spencer just bitching & whining at protesters now. $500,000 in university money to do this. #SpencerAtUF pic.twitter.com/z4hYqkMZGT

— Christopher Mathias (@letsgomathias) October 19, 2017

Cutting through the rumors and misinformation thrown about in the lead-up to the planned Spencer speech proved difficult. One thing, however, was abundantly clear from the get-go: the fascists were not merely interested in holding a “free speech” rally on a public university campus, they wanted to get a head-start on their campaign of ethnic cleansing and genocide by instigating violence. As was reported in the days leading up to Spencer’s event, the fascists had promoted “flash mob” style attacks and demonstrations at community centers. Over half-a-million dollars had been spent on “security,” but that didn’t stop three Nazis from trying to commit murder in broad daylight.

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Tyler Eugene Tenbrink

Tyler Eugene Tenbrink, William Henry Fears, and Colton Jean Fears were all chased off campus by anti-fascist demonstrators. We watched as Tenbrink literally threw himself over a barricade to get away from protesters—as has become yet another overnight internet phenomenon. We watched, with many others, as he was told that he would either have to return to the designated “free speech” zone or he would be “arrested.” Tenbrink chose “arrest.” We watched as the police clapped him in handcuffs and escorted him from the premises. People cheered, likely because they did not know, as the adage goes, “Cops and klan go hand-in-hand.”

Because the police released Tenbrink…then he and his Nazi buddies went to try and shoot some protesters.

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William Henry Fears

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Colton Jean Fears

“The Nazis sieg hieled, shouted about Adolf Hitler, and Tenbrink hopped out with a gun as the Fears brothers shouted “Shoot them!” One shot was fired, then the Nazis fled.”

On the corner of Archer and 34th, Tenbrink and the Fears Brothers drove up in a silver jeep to a number of demonstrators who held anti-Nazi signs. The Nazis sieg heiled, shouted about Adolf Hitler, and Tenbrink hopped out with a gun as the Fears brothers shouted “Shoot them!” One shot was fired, then the Nazis fled.

Now, more than ever, we must begin to organize in self-defense. These fascists and white supremacists are not merely organizing to defend the “First Amendment.” This is the thin veil they hide behind, hoping to win sympathy from liberals and conservatives across the traditional political spectrum. The true intentions they harbor are for ethnic cleansing and genocide, a campaign of hatred and violence against people of color, queer folks, trans* folks, Muslims, and other marginalized communities. They’re motivated by fear. Fear that the global paradigm of white, heteronormative patriarchy is crumbling all around them. Rather than join with us to face our common enemy—the State and all its corporate powers—they’ve chosen to become the lap-dogs and boot-lickers of oligarchs.

We have a choice. We can, as New York Times op-eds and university presidents insist, simply “ignore” the fascist creep, hope that if we bury our heads in the sand, white nationalists and neo-Nazis will simply “go away.” Or we can take back our streets, like the people of Gainesville, and organize our communities in mutual aid and self-defense. We carry a better world in our heads and hearts. Let’s start building it right here, right now.

Stay wild.

Categories: News

Puerto Rico: SWAT Team Raids Mutual Aid Disaster Relief

Fri, 10/20/2017 - 02:51

The post Puerto Rico: SWAT Team Raids Mutual Aid Disaster Relief appeared first on It's Going Down.

Members of the Mutual Aid Disaster Relief collective, went to Puerto Rico, to help distribute food and water and to provide medical aid in the aftermath of hurricane Maria. On the morning of October 16th, their base of operations was raided by a SWAT team with the pretext that they were responding to a hostage situation. Read their account of the incident here

Categories: News

Puerto Rico: No Longer Forgotten

Fri, 10/20/2017 - 02:24

The post Puerto Rico: No Longer Forgotten appeared first on It's Going Down.

As the days grind up in number, creating time and distance from the thrashing winds and surging inundation of the deluge of water hurricane Maria pulled over Puerto Rico, statistics remain alien from the view on the ground, a tangible contradiction to a popular and racially charged narrative that Puerto Ricans “need to stop relying on the trump administration for relief and rebuild themselves”.

A Puerto Rico which was already a decade behind in infrastructure, limping with debt and who is projected by economists to run dry of money by November cannot rebuild from this level of damage.

Puerto Rico is heavily scarred with countless homes populated by home bound and bed bound elders sitting in a silence that was once occupied by the sounds of air conditioners and televisions, sheets of perspiration from the sweltering heat falling into their frustration furrowed brows.

Debris clogs traverses. Telephone and Electric poles are snapped, bent, broken and either lie on people’s roofs or sprawl across busy roadways.

Long stretches of lush fields of trees, crowded in elbow to elbow are naked of leaves and have torn appendages scattered across the land.

And rather than learn from a decentralized model of human to human, neighbor to neighbor circumvention of FEMA and military protocols which limit food resource output to 200,000 meals per day on an island of more than 3 million people needing 3 meals a day, they continue to prop up their relentless disaster occupation ethic against stacks of financial subsidization.

Throwing money and resources to power structures that have proven their bottle neck relief structure to be sorely lacking, at a time where ‘sorely lacking’ means life or death to people not privy to catered buffets in air conditioning at the glitzy Sheraton hotel where these defective models legitimize their worth through meetings and op sec tactical strategizing while people cook to death in their living rooms.

Mutual Aid Disaster Relief workers have traversed these waste models as being just as unpassable as collapsed bridges in Utuado.

An assessment, supplies and medical team has been circulating through mountain villages, Refugee camps and resource-untouched communities and with tons per day of supplies to mitigate the damage that has been wreaked upon them by the crime of abandonment.

We are working to reduce harm and provide access to medical care. We are supporting radical, grassroots efforts on the ground with supplies and amplification. We are countering the narrative taped over the mouths of a people with a history ripping at the seams with endured violence, colonization and exploitation from San Juan to Aguadilla.

We continue short term relief as the opening scenes to a committed effort which is preparing for a systems team to come in with long term solar and water purification infrastructure.

Decolonization is fueled by independence and empowered self determination.

In Puerto Rico, relief efforts continue to be constructed by the determined hands of communities rooted in environmental justice and supported by the hands of comrade movements.

We continue to amplify the people’s struggle.

This story will be told by the people of Puerto Rico.

Categories: News

Logging at the ‘Goose’ Timber Sale: A Call to Action from Cascadia Forest Defenders

Fri, 10/20/2017 - 02:11

The post Logging at the ‘Goose’ Timber Sale: A Call to Action from Cascadia Forest Defenders appeared first on It's Going Down.

The Forest Defender tree sit was searched and extensively photographed Wednesday October 18th by Lane County Sherriff’s Deputies and Forest Service Officers with a promise to “see you tomorrow,” says one Forest Defender. This is the first contact CFD has had with law enforcement since the tree sit protest began six months ago. LANE COUNTY OREGON: Logging has begun at the Goose Timber Sale in the Willamette National Forest north of McKenzie Bridge and Highway 126. The Cascadia Forest Defenders (CFD) have maintained a tree sit protest inside the Goose Timber Sale since late May and CFD first observed evidence of logging on Tuesday October 17th.

Cascadia Forest Defenders are making a general call to action to all activists and organizers in the Pacific Northwest to help stop the Goose Timber Sale. CFD will maintain a presence inside the Goose Timber Sale that will force Seneca Jones Timber Company and the U.S. Forest Service to abandon logging of public lands.

Climbing libre

A post shared by goose treesit (@goosetreesit) on Jul 26, 2017 at 7:16pm PDT

Logging has begun along forest road 704 near the entrance to the Frissell Trail. CFD asks all participating volunteers, activists, and media to access forest road 705 at the intersection of Highway 126 and McKenzie River Dr. Lane Transit District bus route 91 intersects with forest road 705 at Stop ID: 09086 near mile post 49 on Highway 126.

The Cascadia Forest Defenders are committed to ending logging on all Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Forest Services public lands. In the spirit of legendary American naturalist Edward O. Wilson, CFD wishes to keep half of Oregon wild, just as E.O. Wilson believes half of Earth must remain wild to maintain a livable biosphere. The Goose Timber Sale borders the H.J. Andrews Experimental Forest and has a high concentration of mountain springs that feed the McKenzie River. The McKenzie River is the primary water source for Eugene/Springfield and a crucial Bull Trout habitat.

“This action is not just about saving ancient forests or the McKenzie River, it’s about preventing human extinction and all the suffering to come,” says veteran activist Shannon Wilson.

For more information visit: forestdefensenow.com

Contact: forestdefensenow@gmail.com or keepgoosewild@protonmail.com

Categories: News

Neo-Nazis Organizing Richard Spencer Event Release Hit List of Gainesville Establishments

Thu, 10/19/2017 - 15:59

The post Neo-Nazis Organizing Richard Spencer Event Release Hit List of Gainesville Establishments appeared first on It's Going Down.

Neo-Nazis with The Daily Stormer, in concert with Richard Spencer and his website AltRight.com, have released an action plan for Spencer’s talk at the University of Florida that includes a ‘hit list’ of synagogues, black museums, and newspapers to be targeted in flash demonstrations after the speaking event. They also encourage all neo-Nazis in Gainesville to leave the campus and begin targeting these establishments if they cannot get inside Spencer’s talk.

In lead up to @RichardBSpencer event in #Gainesville, one of the neo-Nazi groups coming to event vandalizes MLK statue. #nonazisatuf pic.twitter.com/WswzATjrQa

— It's Going Down (@IGD_News) October 17, 2017

As documented by IGD and Unicorn RiotSpencer is also using a variety of neo-Nazi groups such as Anti-Communist Action and Vanguard America, known for violence and murder at rallies such as Unite the Right in Charlottesville, for security. In a set of Discord chats released by Unicorn Riotmembers of Anti-Communist Action detailed plans to manufacture bombs and kill counter-protesters at similar events.

In the lead up to Spencer’s talk, neo-Nazi groups have also carried out acts of vandalism in the state of Florida; vandalizing a statue of Martin Luther King, Jr. last week.

Controlling Tickets and Media

As The Guardian reported, Richard Spencer and his neo-Nazi minions will control what journalists are allowed to enter and report on the event.

Also, neo-Nazis will be in charge of who gets tickets and how they are distributed. According to AltRight.com: 

We are told that tickets will be distributed beginning at 1:30pm at the intersection of Hull Road and SW 34th Street, which is north-west of the event center location marked on the map below. Seven hundred (700) tickets will be distributed to attendees on a first-come, first-served basis. The location of the ticket distribution is subject to change.

The Phillips Center for the Performing Arts is located at

3201 Hull Rd
Gainesville, FL 32611

The Daily Stormer gave further instructions to neo-Nazi and Alt-Right attendees. They write:

Arrive as early as possible (11 AM). Go to the event, preferably with a group, dressed normally – no uniform or racist anything, no white polo and khakis, no flags or signs, if you’ve got Nazi tattoos cover them up. Our people are going to be giving out the tickets, so walk up and don’t look like an antifa (but don’t look too Nazi either…). Don’t talk to anyone who is not in your group, at all, even if you know them. If you don’t get a ticket, don’t fret. Don’t go to the designated protest area/TRAP ZONE. Go other places in the city of Gainsville and stage multiple flash demonstrations with a group of people. The the event gets shut down, move to step two.

Neo-Nazis Release Hit List for Flash Demonstrations

The Daily Stormer then goes on to advise people that there will be “flash demonstrations” later on in the day. The neo-Nazi website lists four places intended for targeting, including a local Jewish Center, a newspaper, Starbucks (for supposedly selling “anti-white coffee”), and a black museum. They write:

Just – all of you guys, I’m serious – if you don’t get in the event, get off the campus quickly. As soon as you get denied a ticket, go to your car and hit the first spot you find on Google.

For more updates, follow @IGD_News and @NoNazisAtUF

Categories: News

Nazi Group Providing Richard Spencer Security in Gainesville Promotes Murder & Bombings Online

Wed, 10/18/2017 - 22:05

The post Nazi Group Providing Richard Spencer Security in Gainesville Promotes Murder & Bombings Online appeared first on It's Going Down.

Charlottesville, VA – Over two months after the murder of Heather Heyer at the neo-nazi Unite The Right rally on August 12, the broader neo-fascist “alt-right” movement has generally become fractured, due to external pressures, de-platforming and infighting. Recent attempts to hold white supremacist rallies and events have repeatedly been cancelled or shut down. Most recently, the Nazi front group Anti-Communist Action (‘Anticom’ for short) announced it was holding a torch rally with Richard Spencer in Charlotte, NC on December 28th, only to announce days later that the event had been cancelled for “safety” reasons.

More recently Anticom was revealed to have been contacted by Spencer requesting assistance providing security at his appearance at the University of Florida on October 19:

‘Pence Bot’ sends automated direct messages from Anticom Discord administrators to other users in the chat.

As part of the alt-right communication leaks obtained during Unite The Right in Charlottesville, Unicorn Riot received logs taken from Anticom’s Discord chat server, with messages spanning from February 2nd to September 5th, 2017. Today’s release is the first part of series, and the initial data set includes Anticom chat logs from February 2 to March 27, 2017.

Anticom’s website (which was recently shut down) described themselves as “the right’s response to antifa” and that their “mission is to defend our communities from radical political violence by physically resisting leftist terrorists and rioters.”

The Anticom chat logs show a strong theme of a desire to injure and/or murder antifascists and leftists, generally justified under the pretext of “self-defense.”

The Anticom #general chat channel opened up on the night of February 2nd and within minutes the username ‘bungu’ suggested “I think a few cities should be selected to create groups to work with police and counter antifa” and the user ‘Anticom – Head Representative’ calling for “edginess…to gain attention.”

The self-proclaimed leader of Anticom goes by ‘Seth’, a young white male living in or near Charlotte, North Carolina. In most copies of the chat logs we obtained, he instead appears with the username ‘Haupstürmfuhrer Pepe’. (‘Haupstürmfuhrer’ was a title given to paramilitary commanders in Hitler’s SS.)

One of several selfies posted by Anticom organizer ‘Seth’ under the Discord usernames ‘Anticom – Head Representative’ and/or ‘Haupstürmfuhrer Pepe’

Among the first proposed symbols of the group was a backward rendition of the Anti-Fascist Action flag, colored yellow and black and emblazoned with the words “Anti-Communist Action”.

A helicopter is seen in the version of the flag is in reference to the ‘helicopter rides’ used to execute political dissidents, often after they were brutally tortured, by Chile’s US-backed military dictatorship that existed under General Augusto Pinochet from 1973 to 1990.

Two days later, on February 4th, the username ‘Junge’ suggested Anticom “get rid of the helicopter so there’s no needless controversy about Pinochet and all that”; however, Anticom has since continued to use Pinochet and “helicopter rides” meme in its graphics. Many messages throughout the months of Anticom chat logs contain tributes to Pinochet.

The discussion then turned to Anticom chat participants expressing hopes for an upcoming civil war; user name ‘Karling’ speculated that a “massacre” and “a genocide” would take place with “the military on our side”.

While the server was still in its first day of use, Anticom chat user “Odalist Refrain” posted about the need to “drive the desert invader out” and proceeded to recommend bombing “a major federal building”.

The night of February 2, the username ‘GoGo’ boasted in the Anticom chat about how they “got the local gay club fined and shut down for a couple weeks” by reporting them for alleged building code violations. As we reported last December, neo-nazis and other far-right elements orchestrated campaigns to get DIY and queer-friendly venues shut down in the wake of the Ghost Ship fire in Oakland.

The next day, February 3, Anticom chat user ‘webdevanon’ outlined a four-step plan to “hunt down antifags” which included watching an ISIS “kitchen video” about how “to make a bomb out of household ingredients”, and go to the next protest disguised as antifa “with backpack and black block” and “do it Boston bomber style.”

A recurring theme throughout all the conversations in the Anticom Discord server were talks of violently confronting antifascists and shutting down leftist and antifascist protests. Anticom chat users talked about their desires to “conduct citizens arrests during violent protests” and “beat down some commie scum,” with plans to eventually form “Minuteman type…riot response teams.”

Some in the chat went further and expressed explicit desires to commit murder, making statements such as “run them over” and “I want to kill lefties so bad.”

Anticom members were also keen to discuss holocaust denial as well as valorize attacks on Jews, Muslims and people of color, with many references to lynchings and gas chambers. Anticom’s Discord chats contained a substantial amount of hate speech – server logs we received show 1,107 messages containing the word ‘nigger’, 445 uses of the word ‘kike’ and 412 references to Hitler, sent over a span of seven months.  The phrase “Hitler did nothing wrong” appears 21 times.

As the weeks and months went on after first convening in their Discord server, Anticom members and supporters began to form a more cohesive entity with a basis in real-life streetfights and large-scale event organizing.

Part Two of our Anticom Discord leak reporting will release the remainder of the Anticom #general chat logs, which includes conversations leading up to, during, and after Unite The Right in Charlottesville.

(Anticom did not respond to requests for comment for this article as of the time of this writing.)

Over the last two months a team of anonymous web developers generously donated their time to create this searchable platform for Discord chat servers with support from Unicorn Riot collective members. It is located at https://discordleaks.unicornriot.ninja. We are pleased to present the first version of this software – there are a few bugs but most of the content is indexed and accessible. We have made redactions to the chat logs to protect the personal information of people identified as targets for harassment; other than these minimal redactions these logs have not been altered.

-CLICK HERE-

To help our volunteer-operated, horizontally-organized, non-profit media collective please consider a tax-deductible donation:

supportourworknew

Categories: News

Hotwire #9: Puerto Rico, J20 Trials, & Raqqa

Wed, 10/18/2017 - 19:46

The post Hotwire #9: Puerto Rico, J20 Trials, & Raqqa appeared first on It's Going Down.

In this Hotwire we share the anti-fascist call from Florida to oppose Richard Spencer in Gainesville on October 19. We discuss the upcoming J20 trials in which nearly 200 protesters are charged with conspiracy for protesting the inauguration, as well as the outcome of the burning cop car case that just concluded in Paris. Considering the bullshit repression and liberal lawsuits in the wake of #Charlottesville, we make the case about why anti-fascism must mean anti-statism.

http://traffic.libsyn.com/exworker/The-Hotwire_9_Puerto-Rico-breaking-with-the-state-J20-trials-approach-ducks-of-the-east.mp3
We also borrow part of a great interview with Puerto Rican anarchist Frank Lopez on mutual relief efforts in the wake of Hurricane Maria. Stay tuned until the end because we have some important calls to support political prisoners, calls to support forest defenders in Oregonpolitical prisoner birthdays, announcements for upcoming anarchist book fairs, and the repression roundup. {October 18, 2017}

Notes and Links TRANSCRIPT:

Rebel Girl: October 18, 2017: Mutual Aid Disaster Relief in Puerto Rico, anarchists rally against rapist cops in New York City, Kurdish forces liberate Raqqa, anti-fascists call for opposition to white nationalists tomorrow in Florida, and Ебет полиции on this episode of…

The Hotwire.

A weekly anarchist news show brought to you by The Ex-Worker.

With me, the Rebel Girl.

Welcome back to the Hotwire. This week we compare the capitalist, statist, and anarchist solutions for the disaster in Puerto Rico. In the Repression Roundup, we argue against the extreme-centrist positions that bolster the state rather than popular struggles against fascism. Anti-fascists across Florida are calling for opposition TOMORROW, Thursday, October 19against white nationalist Richard Spencer at the University of Florida in Gainesville. We also discuss the liberation of Raqqa, upcoming anarchist book fairs, and the first J20 trial happening in November.

If we missed something important, or to include something in a future episode, shoot us an e-mail at podcast[AT]CrimethInc[DOT]com. A full transcript of this episode with shownotes and useful links can be found at our website, CrimethInc.com/podcast. You can subscribe to The Hotwire on iTunes or wherever you get your podcasts. You can also listen to us through the new anarchist podcast network Channel Zero. Listeners in Tacoma, Washington can catch us every Wednesday at 9 AM on KUPS 90.1 FM. Believe it or not, every Hotwire is radio friendly, so just get in touch if you’d like to put The Hotwire on your local airwaves.

HEADLINES

Now… for the headlines.

A German military vehicle was burned near Munich on October 10. The communiqué for the action signs off with, “Against every war, against every deportation!”

Squatters in Toulouse, France opened up an abandoned hotel to house 75 unaccompanied refugee minors.

Thousands marched in Chiapas, Mexico against extractive mining and repression. Chiapas is the home of the Zapatistas, a horizontal network of rural communities against neo-liberal development and for indigenous autonomy.

Anarchists in Ukraine smashed the windows of a fascist headquartersand left a big circle-a painted on the building’s facade. In their communiqué, the anti-fascists state, “The anarchists will continue to ensure Nazis and their supporters do not live in peace.”

Anarchists also redecorated the façade of a fascist-owned storefront in Quebec, while the owner was off harassing migrants with the racist, anti-immigrant group La Meute. The store’s owner Robert Proule blamed the vandalism on high-profile anti-capitalist Jaggi Singh, but in an online communiqué, the anti-fascists made it clear that , “we don’t know Jaggi Singh. We self-organize, autonomously and informally. Everybody hates racists and Robert Proule.”

Neo-Nazis trying to celebrate “Leif Erikson Day” in Philadelphia were chased away from a statue to Icelandic explorers. They re-gathered in another park, but after another brief altercation when anti-fascists showed up again, the neo-Nazis just decided to go home.

On Monday, the No Nazis coalition at the University of Florida marched to the University President’s house in Gainesville. Anti-fascists are angry at the University for not only providing a platform for white nationalist Richard Spencer, but also for spending half a million dollars on security for his October 19 event. That’s tomorrow!!!

Anti-fascists in Florida are calling for anti-racists throughout the south to oppose the white power leader in Gainesville. On Monday, Florida’s governor declared a State of Emergency in order to bring in outside police to protect the fascist event. This is the quintessence of statist priorities: spend money that could otherwise benefit hurricane-battered communities on putting down any sort of popular mobilization against neo-Nazis. Disgusting.

Anti-fascist Drexel professor George Ciccariello-Maher was placed on administrative leave last week after the university caved to right-wing threats of violence against him. The threats were sparked by, well, let’s just say Ciccariello-Maher has a way with tweets. Basically he chalked up the Las Vegas mass shooting as a natural product of white masculinity and Trumpism. In a heartwarming gesture of solidarity, Ciccariello-Maher’s students have been posting photos of themselves with supportive signs. So much for all that disingenuous whining about academic freedom peddled by right-wingers who just want to be able to spout racism free of consequences. Woof.

Hundreds of students walked out in protest after police threw two teenage sisters to the ground at a restaurant near their New Jersey high school. The student protesters shouted “We want justice!”

The Unist’ot’en Camp in so-called British Columbia have begun their October work season. In addition to finishing up a Healing Lodge, the indigenous water protectors are building houses along pipeline routes throughout their unceded, ancestral land. To get involved, visit their website at unistoten.camp. We have the link in our shownotes.

Thirteen unlucky animal agriculture websites in France got hacked on October 4, the day of a French animal industry conference. In their communiqué, the hackers declare, “Most of the websites on this server are participants and exhibitors of this grotesque production of violent and obscene cruelties towards non-human animals all the while killing the land and exploiting those that work it. We had the capacity and the means to shut these websites down, so we did.” They go on to invite those who sympathize with the hack to, “Join the anarchists, ALF, ELF, Anonymous or your local antispeciesist or antifa movements.”

Normalista student-teachers in Michoacan, Mexico were brutally repressedon Saturday while preparing to commemorate the fifth anniversary of police repression that took place at their school in 2012. One student was struck in the head by a police projectile. 74 students were detained in total. Just last month was the three-year anniversary of the 43 disappeared normalistas from Ayotzinapa.

Last week, prisoners at Pasquotank Prison in North Carolina set fire to their sewing factory and made a break for it. Two guards died and ten more were injured. The escape wasn’t successful, but this Rebel Girl is all about any action taken against the modern day slave plantations of prisons. And that modern day slavery stuff, it’s not just hyperbole. In case you missed it, listen to this clip from Friday of a Louisiana Sherriff.

Roughly 4,000 of the firefighters battling the blazes in northern California are inmates. They get paid one dollar an hour for their life-threatening work, but most counties won’t hire them as firefighters when they get out due to having a record.

The struggle to save the Bialowieza Forest in Poland continues. For the first time in the campaign’s history three blockades of heavy equipment took place simultaneously at different points of the forest. Unfortunately, one anarchist comrade was brutally assaulted by police. The Bialowieza Forest is one of the last and largest remaining primeval forests that once stretched across Europe.

Piotr Riabov, the most well-known anarchist historian in Russia, was jailed for six days for swearing at police in Belarus after they broke up a lecture of his on anarchist history. He is spending those six days on hunger strike. In solidarity with Piotr, we’d like to say Ебет полиции! We can’t tell you what that means in English since our show gets played on FCC airwaves, but let’s just say it rhymes with “ducks of the east.”

Anarchist bio-hacker Michael Laufer made headlines this week when he announced plans to subvert the pharmaceutical industry by building a DIY movement to teach patients how to make their own medications. Laufer, who wears an antifa pin on his three-piece suit, was quoted saying, “To deny someone access to a lifesaving medication is murder. An act of theft [of intellectual property] to prevent an act of murder is morally acceptable.” In 1977 anarchists were making DIY punk. In 2017, now they’re making DIY prescription meds. What a world.

On Tuesday in Brooklyn, New York dozens marched in response to two NYPD detectives who handcuffed and raped an 18 year-old woman in September. The rapist cops are now on “modified duty,” still getting paid. Angry protesters marched behind a banner that read “Anna Chambers, We Believe You” and chanted “No more rape! No more police state!” They tried to enter a co-called “public community meeting,” but were denied entry. So they had their own community meeting outside, where survivors of sexual assault spoke.

The Metropolitan Anarchist Coordinating Council’s call for the march reads:

“We know police officers have the power to arrest people with minimal cause and throw them into jails where they are raped by correctional officers. We know that cops target and rape sex workers on the streets. We know that police departments “lose” rape kits and claim their assaults are consensual. We know that cops do “cavity searches” both publicly and privately on their chosen victims. We know that cops rape underage women. We know they commit racially motivated acts of rape and murder under the guise of law and order. We know they are well protected by their superiors, their unions, their lawyers, and the media outlets that blame victims while the vulnerable are silenced and beaten to submission.

Cops don’t stop rapists because cops are rapists. It is up to us to defend our communities.”

While Catalonia’s president remains unclear about declaring independence for the region, an independence referendum voted on by the Kurds in Northern Iraq seems to be leading towards civil war. The Iraqi military has begun to occupy towns like Kirkuk and Sinjar in retaliation for the vote. The Peshmerga withdrew without a fight, leaving PKK and other revolutionary forces there to defend several towns. Meanwhile, the once-capitol of the Islamic State, Raqqa, Syria has finally been taken back by the Syrian Democratic Forces, who are composed of Kurdish fighters influenced by the late anarchist Murray Bookchin. They even count an internationalist anarchist militia in their ranks, the International Revolutionary People’s Guerrilla Forces. Improbably, the SDF receives support from the Pentagon, but it should be no surprise that an anarchist-influenced movement would have the most dedicated fighters against the fascism and fundamentalism of the Islamic State. We have a link in our shownotes to fund the return of an internationalist anti-fascist from Rojava. Hopefully their return will lead to more information about the egalitarian social revolution taking place there. For more background, check out Ex-Worker episodes 36 and 39 on the revolution in Rojava.

PUERTO RICO

85% of Puerto Rico still remains without electricity a month after Hurricane Maria hit the island. Some anti-Trump liberals like Elon Musk’s proposal, for Tesla to rebuild the electrical grid off solar power. They see it as a way to popularize so-called sustainable solar energy over fossil fuels and coal. However, the thought of privatizing Puerto Rico’s energy grid and handing it over to one of the world’s leading capitalists gives us pause. With privatization, any service becomes even more about profit than about human needs—just look at the wave of neoliberal reforms in Latin America in the 80s and 90s, and the crises and class divisions those sparked. The same arguments that have been going on about net neutrality apply here—privately owned services lead to high class and low class options, further entrenching the class divisions that persist as the man-made disaster that underlies any natural one.

It’s not only capitalists who are trying to consolidate their power in Puerto Rico. Early Monday morning, law enforcement including SWAT team personnel raided the Mutual Aid Disaster Relief base of operations in Guaynabo. After forcing all volunteers out of the building at gunpoint, the cops proceeded to ask questions about whether the volunteers were antifa, if they had ever used the raised fist, or if they were planning on overthrowing the government. Come on.

In their report on It’s Going Down, Mutual Aid Disaster Relief write, “We know that repression from the state intensifies when our organizing is perceived by those in power as effective. Rather than be intimidated into silence and passivity, this just furthers our resolve to continue organizing from below to support people’s survival and self-determination.” Mutual Aid Disaster Relief have been writing excellent reports from their work in Puerto Rico, detailing local groups worth supporting. We have links to some of their reports in our shownotes, at CrimethInc.com/podcast.

Frank Lopez, of the excellent anarchist video collective Submedia, is from Puerto Rico and recently caught up with It’s Going Down about his recent trip to the island.

Frank Lopez: Maybe I will just jump into what the folks from Mutual Aid Disaster Relief were doing. It was the equivalent to someone raising their hand and saying “we need help,” and they would just go there. They would listen to them, to what they needed, and they would go and do it. We went to a really poor community, a resistance community as well. A community that fought off being expropriated to build a hotel. This really poor community in the town of Guaynabo had been there for three weeks and had not received any aid from anybody. When we arrived there the folks from Mutual Aid Disaster Relief who were working with this church were the first people to bring anything. If there’s anything needed in Puerto Rico, more than anything it’s that sort of decentralized mutual aid. Folks just basically looking to where needs are and just trying to fill those needs

I think what really blows people’s minds about Mutual Aid Disaster Relief is that they just do it, and I just think that anybody can do this. The idea that we have to go through official channels is bullshit. If you wait for bureaucracies like the Red Cross sometimes you’d be dead.

IGD: Do people feel like this is the breaking point with the state? That things will go in a more autonomous direction? Or, instead, do you think people are more and more looking to the state for help? I mean obviously, the mayor of San Juan is definitely taking a leadership role in this and a lot of people are looking to her.

Frank Lopez: The mayor of San Juan is a politician, so I wouldn’t trust her. I don’t trust the governor of Puerto Rico. I think that some people are going to make a break with the state, especially as they experience folks who just decided to help them without going through that hurdle of state bureaucracy to get them aid. But, the undoing of the colonial mentality of the island is a really long-term project. We have 500 years of being colonized so I think there’s a lot of work to be done in changing that mindset. I think particularly young people are the ones that I see as the most promising of the populations who are going to be able to recognize this.

I don’t want to sound like I’m being politically opportunistic, like within this disaster I’m using it to push other things, but I think in this particular moment it seems extremely necessary that people recognize their collective power, recognize that the government has failed them at the moment when they’re most needed, and start doing the shit to stop the dependency on the local and the federal government. I don’t think we really need a referendum to let Puerto Ricans understand that they’re independent already. The United States doesn’t do anything for us; they have never done anything for us. All they’ve ever done is take, take, take. It’s really, really clear right now. People should seize this opportunity to help each other out and start to build the shit that is going to make them independent for years to come.

Rebel Girl: In our shownotes, we have links to the full interview as well as fundraising sites from both Submedia and Mutual Aid Disaster Relief.

REPRESSION ROUNDUP

In this week’s repression roundup…

Last Hotwire, we reported on the 10-minute demonstration of white nationalists who returned to Charlottesville, Virginia. Cops, courts and Klan all go hand in hand, so in the week since, two black counterprotesters who were on the streets during the Unite the Right rally have been arrested.

DeAndre Harris, a 20-year-old local who was beat by a gang of white nationalists on August 12, is somehow now facing charges himself for injuries that one of his attackers sustained later that day.

Unfortunately, Harris’ lawyer has been tweeting out images of other anti-fascists from August 12, holding them responsible for the injuries that Harris is being charged with. We want the charges against Harris dropped, and later on we have details about flooding the Commonwealth Attorney’s phone lines to that end, but if we turn over other anti-fascists whenever neo-Nazis or the state come hunting for us, it will dissuade people from taking the kind of action that was crucial to stopping the Unite the Right rally in the first place. We should get these charges dropped by popular pressure, not by sacrificing other comrades to the state or fascists.

Police also arrested Corey Long, who now faces charges of assault and battery for allegedly warding fascists away from counterprotesters by wielding an improvised blowtorch. You’ve probably seen the image, it looks like it was basically an aerosol can lit up with a lighter. Of course, this was less than 24 hours after hundreds of white supremacists marched with open-flame tiki torches and used them to beat anti-racists.

Some of the fascist Unite the Right attendees have also received warrants, which may seem like a positive development to some, but as anarchists we don’t trust the state to resolve our conflicts with fascists for us, let alone accept its legitimacy as the sole arbiter of justice. We’re supposed to trust that the same system that provided police escorts for fascists, that responded to Heather Heyer’s murder with riot police before ambulances, and that is now arresting black counterprotesters for legitimate self-defense is going to protect us from fascist violence? Yeah right.

Unfortunately, there are still those who are pushing an extreme-centrist agenda. Unicorn Riot reports that last week a criminal complaint was filed in Virginia court against the “illegal paramilitary activity” during the Unite the Right rally. The suit names white nationalist groups like the Traditionalist Workers Party and League of the South, but also two of the armed leftist groups present: Redneck Revolt and the Socialist Rifle Club. Let’s not forget that the history of modern gun control in America began against the Black Panther Party in the sixties. Since then, gun control has given a platform to right-wing groups like the NRA while continuing to further criminalize communities of color. From history, we can already tell where a lawsuit like this will lead.

Remember that whole “no moral equivalency” line that was so popular with liberals in the wake of Charlottesville? Well, this suit would codify precisely the “both-sides” discourse that Trump used to excuse white nationalists and demonize anti-fascists. We’ve heard liberals say that they’re worried about the rise of unchecked political violence, but an anarchist understanding of power tells us is that politics is violence, the state being the monopoly of the legitimate use of it. With a million black men in prisons and the roots of the police being in southern slave patrols, it’s not like the state is neutral in wielding that force either—the neo-Nazis who sought out the magistrate that issued DeAndre Harris’ warrant know that well.

That is what distinguishes anarchists from liberals—our search for a defeat of fascism that lifts up the communities it threatens, rather than re-asserting the state over all of us. You might wonder what this actually looks like. Thankfully, last week in Charlottesville local anti-fascists demonstrated one way of putting these principles into action. Three Unite the Right attendees faced court on Friday. Instead of trusting that the measly fines they received would sufficiently dissuade the fascists from coming back to Charlottesville, anti-fascists reportedly chased them out of the courthouse and all the way to their cars, until a group of police officers ordered the anti-fascists to disperse.

Cheers to the brave folks in Charlottesville. The Anarchist People of Color collective there is calling on folks to flood the Commonwealth Attorney’s phone lines with demands to drop the charges against DeAndre Harris, Corey Long and all others facing charges from taking anti-racist action. That number is 434–970–3176.

With anti-fascist self-defense under attack, it’s only a matter of time before they start criminalizing even administering first aid to other comrades. Oh wait, no it’s not. In just one month the first trial in the J20 case begins, and some of the defendants are on trial precisely for being street medics. During the presidential inauguration, police illegally kettled, mass arrested, and brutalized over 200 people who now face at least 8 felonies each. The government’s case consists of the fact that a handful of windows were broken. So how are they holding over 200 people responsible? By chalking up the J20 protests as a conspiracy. In characterizing the protests as a conspiracy, they get to identify activity like chanting slogans or dressing in black or even providing first aid as evidence of conspiring, arguing that therefore, all of the nearly 200 codefendants are equally responsible for the small amount of property destruction that occurred. If this precedent had existed during the Black Lives Matter or Occupy waves of action, there would be thousands of people awaiting felony trials as a result.

Just last week, J20 defendants went to court after the prosecutors moved to suppress videos and other evidence of police misconduct.

Supporters have announced a brand new call-in campaign to pressure the US Attorney’s office to drop the cases. Check out DropJ20.org for details.

Also, consider coming to DC at the end of November to pack the courthouse and show some love for the first batch of J20 trial defendants.

The trial for the burning cop car case in Paris came to a close last week, with eight comrades receiving sentences ranging from fines and probation to seven years imprisonment. At the height of last year’s Occupy-style Nuit Debout movement against the Loi Travail labor law, a spontaneous march took the streets of Paris and trashed a police car, eventually lighting it up with a flare. Nine people were charged in relation to the act, including Kara Wild, an anarchist from Chicago. Kara received a four-year sentence with two years suspended. Over the last year and a half, solidarity actions have taken place across Europe and North America, ranging from rallies to smashing windows at correctional facilities to torching French gendarme vehicles. You can lock up a few anarchists, but you can’t cage the spirit!

Our hearts go out to all the burning cop car defendants. For a full report on the case, check out “The Poetry of Flames: French Tales of Arson,” which you can find on our website, CrimethInc.com.

Supporters of the anti-police brutality activist Reverend Joy Powell have organized a phone blast to support her this week. Powell was railroaded by the Rochester police for her community activism and is currently in a dilapidated facility full of health risks. We have more details on the phone blast, and an address where you can write the Reverend Powell herself, linked in our shownotes.

Political Prisoner Seth Hayes is on the verge of a diabetic coma and is in urgent need of medical attention. His supporters are asking people to call the supervisor at Sullivan Correctional to demand that he be taken to Albany Medical Center as soon as possible. You can call Superintendent Keyser at 845–434–2080. Just let them know you’re calling about Robert Seth Hayes, number 74-A–2280.

Unfortunately, that’s all the time we have for news. If you want us to include something in a future Hotwire, just send us an email at podcast[AT]CrimethInc[DOT]com.

POLITICAL PRISONER BIRTHDAYS

We’ll close out our episode with next week’s news, but first…

Black Panther political prisoner Jalil Muntaqim celebrates his birthday today, October 18. Jalil was captured in 1971 after a shootout with San Francisco police and then charged with attempting to assassinate police in retaliation for the murder of political prisoner George Jackson. He has maintained his political convictions through organizing in prison for over 30 years.

And that’s the only political prisoner birthday we have for you this week. So come on, just sit down and write a letter to Jalil. It only takes a few minutes for you, but getting your letter could be the highlight of his week, seriously! We have his address and a guide to writing prisoners in our shownotes. We also have a link to this month’s Political Prisoner Birthday Calendar from PrisonBooks.info, which you can use to organize monthly letter writing nights.

NEXT WEEK’S NEWS

And now, next week’s news, our list of events that you can plug into in real life.

Alerta! Tomorrow, October 19 is the protest against Richard Spencer at the University of Florida in Gainesville. Stay tuned to @IGD_news on twitter for details.

Some of the major neo-Nazi groups behind the Charlottesville Unite the Right rally are planning to descend on central Tennessee on October 28. Organizers are calling for anti-fascists to gather at 9am on the corner of North Cannon Blvd and Lane Parkway in Northwest Shelbyville on the 28. We have a link with more details in our shownotes at CrimethInc.com/podcast.

There’s a call to disrupt the International Association of Chiefs of Police conference in Philadelphia this weekend. They’re calling for a march to gather at Thomas Paine Plaza on Saturday, October 21 at 10 AM under the slogan, “For a world without police.” You can find out more details at noiacp.blackblogs.org, and you can donate to their action bail fund through a link posted in our shownotes.

Two Catholic Workers who sabotaged Dakota Access Pipeline infrastructure are touring around the pacific northwest this week, speaking on climate change, direct action, and the indigenous-led No DAPL struggle. They’re in Phoenix, Oregon on October 18 Portland, Oregon on the 20 Seattle, Washington on the 25 and Olympia, Washington at a date and location to be determined. We have the event details linked in our shownotes.

The London Anarchist Book Fair takes place on Saturday, October 28 at Park View School.

The Los Angeles Anarchist Book Fair also takes place the weekend of October 28 and 29 at Leimert Park Plaza. You can find out more, in both English and Spanish, on their website: la.anarchistbookfair.com.

Forest defenders in Oregon are in need of support to stop the logging of approximately 2,500 acres of the Willamette National Forest. Endangered salmon and trout, cougars, and even the spotted owl call the forest home. In May, Cascadia Forest Defenders attached two platforms to Douglas fir trees, 110 feet up in the air! And they’ve been there since, utilizing a diversity of legal and direct action tactics in the course of their campaign. The forest defenders are seeking more people who are willing to stay out in the forest as the weather turns and as tactics escalate. They’re also in need of gear like tarps and sleeping bags, or just plain old cash. We have a link in our shownotes for the Cascadia Forest Defenders website, where you can contact them or make a donation in support.

In Santiago, Chile on November 4 is the 7th tattoo and body art convention to benefit political prisoners. Damn, that just sounds so cool—see some punk and hip-hop acts, get some ink, peruse some insurrectionary anarchist distros and just feel part of a badass rebel culture, all to benefit political prisoners. Go Santiago!

The 2018 Certain Days: Freedom for Political Prisoners calendar is now available! Your group can buy 10 or more at the rate of $10 each and sell them for 15, keeping the difference for your organization. Single issues are available from LeftWingBooks.net and AK Press.

This year’s theme is “Awakening Resistance,” and features art and writings by Jesus Barraza, Andrea Ritchie, Herman Bell, Marius Mason, CrimethInc, and more. People can sponsor copies for prisoners for only $8, postage included! Just be sure to specify their full legal name and prisoner number. Any questions can be sent to info@certaindays.org.

Finally, for October 30 to November 5, the Earth First! newswire republished an international call for a week of action against speciesism and in memory of animal liberation political prisoner Barry Horne. It encourages folks to carry out all kinds of actions, from street propaganda to workshops and debates in your social centers, to organizing actions against animal exploiting businesses.

That’s it for your weekly Hotwire. Thanks to the IGDcast for letting us borrow some of their interview, and as always thanks to Underground Reverie for the music. Don’t forget to check out all the links, mailing addresses, and useful notes we have posted alongside this episode at CrimethInc.com. If you want to replay part or all of this show, go for it. Every Hotwire episode is radio-friendly, in case you want to put it on the airwaves. Just gives us a heads up at podcast[AT]CrimethInc[DOT]com. You can also send us news or announcements to include in future episodes.

Stay informed. Stay rebel. Plug into The Hotwire.

Categories: News

Anti-FOP March during Philly IACP

Wed, 10/18/2017 - 18:21

The post Anti-FOP March during Philly IACP appeared first on It's Going Down.

October 21 – Philly Anti-F.O.P. March
7:30pm @ Rittenhouse Square

Nationwide, people have taken over streets and highways to fight back against local police departments and their brutality. Putting heat on the department results in police chiefs and PR managers recycling the same lies to persuade the people to “move on” with our lives. Meanwhile, police unions such as the Fraternal Order of Police go out of their way to openly mock and intimidate the victims (and victims’ families) with their perpetual terror. In rare occasions where departments attempt to fire officers, police unions fight tooth and nail to keep them instated. The F.O.P. does not care about public relations. They do not care to present themselves differently from what they truly are, a violent gang of bullies and proud of it. Philadelphia is home to arguably the most brutal branch of the F.O.P., historically and present. The F.O.P. continues to brutalize with impunity, while chiefs and PR managers try their best to cover their asses.

All struggles are anti-police struggles. For every slain, maimed, and brutalized victim of police terror, this is for us. Join your community for an intentional Anti-F.O.P. march on Saturday October 21st, Rittenhouse Square at 7:30pm.

Let the Philadelphia F.O.P. know we are sick of their shit. Wear Black!

FTP//1312

Things you can do in the meantime:

Categories: News

What You Need to Know About the Nazis Coming to Gainesville

Wed, 10/18/2017 - 04:41

The post What You Need to Know About the Nazis Coming to Gainesville appeared first on It's Going Down.

On Thursday, October 19th, neo-Nazi leader Richard Spencer, one of the main organizers of the deadly Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia on August 12th, will speak at the University of Florida in Gainesville. Along side Richard Spencer will also be two other white supremacists, Mike “Enoch” Peinovich of The Right Stuff podcast network, and Eli Mosley, leader of the group Identity Evropa.

Several neo-Nazi groups that attended Unite the Right have also recently been tapped to provide the security, and the university is allowing Spencer to give them free reign. While the university is not sponsoring Richard Spencer’s event, they are paying upwards of half a million dollars in order to provide him extra security, allowing Spencer to control who gets tickets in order to keep out potential protesters, and also are strictly regulating (and shutting down entire sections of) both the campus as well as items that people can have on their person. Furthermore, a state of emergency has been declared, which will make it easier for police from across the region to come to the campus and help facilitate a large neo-Nazi event.

At a time when poor and working-class communities across Florida are still rebuilding from hurricane Irma, one has to ask: how can the State and the university go to such lengths to facilitate an event by known neo-Nazis? Why are they marshaling so much money and resources to stop possible resistance to fascists and racists but couldn’t help people in the middle of a disaster? The answer is clear: the State is not neutral. The State is more concerned about putting down resistance from below than with the violence that grows out of the Alt-Right, neo-Nazi, and white nationalist groups that has risen up under the Trump administration. In short, the government is more concerned with people fighting white supremacy than it is with white supremacy, just as it was more focused on protecting private property during the hurricane than in saving the lives of everyday people.

Richard Spencer, his neo-Nazi followers, and his legal team which threatened to sue the University of Florida (which put up no fight) in order to gain access to the campus, view Gainesville as a testing ground. After the University of Florida folded, another university in Ohio buckled under their pressure and moved to allow Spencer space at a university in Cincinnati. Spencer hopes to continue this strategy across the United States, gaining access to public schools under the threat of neo-Nazi muscle, online troll storms, and future lawsuits.

A "Battle of Charlottesville veteran" anticipates the suffering of anti-racists in Gainesville. These are the people Richard Spencer is bringing to @UF.#NoNazisAtUF pic.twitter.com/KIUoGnGwJD

— Atlanta Antifascists (@afainatl) October 17, 2017

Non-profits and ‘extremist’ watch organizations like the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) implore people to either ignore neo-Nazis on campus or turn towards school administrators for help. But each and every time students do this, we see that this strategy places people only in more dangerAt UC Berkeley during Milo’s failed “Free Speech Week,” administrators paid almost a million dollars to facilitate a non-permitted event that lasted only 15 minutes. Meanwhile, Alt-Right trolls, neo-Nazis, and Milo fans attacked people on the street, harassed Leftist groups, and blanketed the campus with racist and reactionary slogans and flyers. In Charlottesville the night before Unite the Right, unarmed students were attacked by hundreds of neo-Nazis with torches, and faced no sizable opposition. In Seattle on January 20th, two Milo Yiannopoulos supporters shot an antifascist, almost killing them. Clearly, when we ignore the Alt-Right and give them control over the streets, they find those least likely to fight back and attack them. Not confronting them leads simply – to more violence. 

In lead up to @RichardBSpencer event in #Gainesville, one of the neo-Nazi groups coming to event vandalizes MLK statue. #nonazisatuf pic.twitter.com/WswzATjrQa

— It's Going Down (@IGD_News) October 17, 2017

For police and university administrators, these acts of violence, harassment, and intimidation have become the “new normal,” and their larger concerns lay squarely on managing, containing, and stopping community based resistance. Because of this, both the Alt-Right and local authorities often find common cause, as evidenced in both Berkeley and Charlottesville, where police worked closely with the Alt-Right and traded information about how to thwart antifascist and community groups. As the old saying goes, cops and Klan, hand in hand.

Today Richard Spencer announced he'll speak alongside Mike "Enoch" Penovich, Nazi organizer of #UniteTheRight in #Gainesville #NoNazisAtUF pic.twitter.com/CxgmmsVTtn

— It's Going Down (@IGD_News) October 16, 2017

To save face, local universities and city governments often double down on talk of “diversity” and respecting “multiculturalism,” while at the same time, bending over backwards to give a platform to people dedicated to destroying those ideals. Examples of this abound, from “unity” campus events which seek to divert people away from potentially rowdy demonstrations, to music events intended to “heal divisions” and regain credibility to illegitimate power structures, to the setting up of powerless ‘advisory’ boards. In this way, we see that both the ‘multiculturalism’ of settler democracy as well as the fascism of the auxiliary Alt-Right – to really be two sides of the same coin.

With this in mind, both talk of ‘diversity’ from the institutions and ‘free speech’ from the fascists is meaningless; behind such empty sloganeering, the real question is who has the force at their disposal to advance their agenda. Ironically however, success on the end of the fascists comes only through colluding with the State in order to get police protection. Without the State, the Alt-Right is powerless. This is why in Charlottesville their entire strategy relied on developing a relationship with the police, and the neo-Nazis even expected that police would “clear” counter-demonstrators. On the other hand, the State succeeds only in either beating down or placating potential resistance from proletarians. To state it plain, we and the resistance that is collectively and individually generated, are the main force at work in these situations. While we may feel at times powerless, it is we who ultimately hold the most power above all other actors; those who in turn attempt to contain and subdue us. We are the real engine at work, and we can shut things fucking down. Let us not delude or forget that power.

The enemy is white supremacy!
All out for Gainesville!
No Nazis at UF!

Who is Richard Spencer? 

Richard Spencer is the son of two wealthy Republicans who attended private and ivy league schools, before starting a career as a journalist for various right-wing publications, such as The American Conservative and then Taki’s Magazine. After drifting towards paleoconservatism, Spencer then began to formulate a more explicitly white nationalist vision, which he termed the “Alternative Right.” Along with mainstays like Jared Taylor of American Renaissance and Peter Brimelow of V-DARE, Spencer argued that an all white ethno-state needed to be created within North America, that blacks and other people of color were intellectually and genetically inferior to white people, and that people within the Alt-Right should push for policy changes such as forced sterilizations, which amounted to “peaceful ethnic cleansing.”

During the Trump campaign, Spencer moved more into the limelight, and also made steps to join forces with more outwardly neo-Nazi formations. This included Andrew Anglin of The Daily Stormer, Mike Penovich of The Right Stuff, and also Matthew Heimbach of the Nationalist Front. In May of 2016, Spencer was video taped giving a Nazi salute at a Dallas bar while Milo Yiannapoulos sang, “America the beautiful.” In November, his followers gave Nazi salutes while Spencer screamed, “Hail Trump!” at a conference. Spencer was also one of the main organizers of the Unite the Right demonstration in Charlottesville, which brought together neo-Confederate, Alt-Right, KKK, and neo-Nazi groups.

Neo-Nazis at the National Policy Institute Conference give up salutes as Richard Spencer screams, “Hail Trump!”

Spencer openly uses anti-black, anti-queer, and racist slurs in his podcasts, and often speaks about the “Jewish Question.” Spencer is known for his cowardice, and at all demonstrations and events has on hand a security team which is often seen protecting or evacuating him from any sign of danger. Spencer also has access to vast amounts of wealth, receiving millions in subsidies from the US government because his family owns a cotton farm.

Also Speaking: Mike “Enoch” Peinovich and Eli Mosley from Unite the Right

Speaking with Richard Spencer at the Gainesville campus will be Mike “Enoch” Peinovich and Eli Mosley, the leader of the neo-Nazi group, Identity Evropa.

Mike Peinovich gives a Nazi salute at a rally near Pikeville, Kentucky in April 2017.

As we wrote back in May of Peinovich:

Mike Peinovich, who resides in New York, is a leader within The Right Stuff (TRS) neo-Nazi podcast network and has produced his own podcasts with several other Alt-Right personalities. Under Peinovich’s leadership, the show moved to openly use racial slurs and horrific Holocaust references, such as “Put ’em in the Oven.”

Under Peinovich, TRS also began to promote openly genocidal and exterminationist ideas, especially regarding African Americans and Jewish people.

After a round of infighting with other online neo-Nazi forums, however, all of the show’s leadership had their personal information reviewed. Mike “Enoch” suddenly became known by his real name, Mike Peinovich, and was exposed to be someone who worked in the tech sector and, surprisingly, had a Jewish wife who had even come on Mike’s podcasts. 

After it came out that Peinovich was a full on neo-Nazi, he divorced his wife and came out more about his racist activism. Soon after, Peinovich was quickly recruited by Richard Spencer for more aggressive street action and public speaking events.

After the murder of Heather Heyer, Peinovich stated on a podcast along with Richard Spencer and Eli Mosley that her accused murderer, neo-Nazi James Alex Fields, deserved “a medal.” He stated:

“As far as the cat lady that was killed… this is the police’s fault for failure to control their own streets.”

“He added: “I don’t give a s–t about this dead cat lady. Whatever. The world is a better place. But the murderer is not the driver of the car. … He did nothing wrong. Frankly, he should get a medal. Let’s be honest. But legally he did nothing wrong.”

Eli Mosley at Unite the Right. Behind him is James Alex Fields, Jr, who would go on to be arrested for the murder of Heather Heyer later that day.

Eli Mosley, real name Elliot Kline, is a former Proud Boy and is the current leader of Identity Evropa and was one of the main organizers behind Unite the Right. Kline was deeply involved in the organizing and security of the event, mobilized rank and file neo-Nazis over internet platforms for the event, worked with law enforcement to plan security, and also helped lead the tiki torch march which attacked a small group of unarmed students.

Writing for the neo-Nazi website The Daily Stormer he wrote:

So what does this event mean in our struggle for total Aryan Victory? This is a sign that we have moved into a new era in the Nazification of America. Normie Trump supporters are becoming racially aware and Jew wise. They are willing to stick up for themselves side by side with Nazis without being adverse to violence. The police departments are begging for the return of law and order and love jokes about hooked-nose merchants, but need our help in getting strongmen elected so they can do their jobs. 

Moving forward we must continue to have a presence at these rallies or organize them ourselves to attract normies to redpill them in person. We need to continue to show the cops that the Nazis are the good guys, and help them elect local officials who will let them once again curbstomp undesirables.

Spencer is Bringing in Neo-Nazi Groups to Do Security, and Sanctioned by the University

Not only is the university paying $500,000 to bring Spencer here, they are also giving Spencer’s private security almost full reign

— #NoNazisAtUF (@NoNazisAtUF) October 13, 2017

On top of forking out half a million to bring Spencer to the campus, the university is also giving Spencer almost full reign to bring in private security. This same practice was seen on the Auburn campus, where Matthew Heimbach and various other neo-Nazis showed up in paramilitary like gear to defend Spencer.

We can't forget the Texas Patriot Front crew he's attracting. The same group that tried storming a bookfair. An offshoot of the group that associated with Heather Heyer's murderer#NoNazisAtUF pic.twitter.com/oTa7b8AcZ3

— Atlanta Antifascists (@afainatl) October 17, 2017

In released screenshots of online conversations, IGD showed that violent neo-Nazi groups such as Anti-Communist Action and Vanguard America are planning on attending the event and providing security for Spencer, much as they have in the past. Patriot Front, an off-shoot of Vanguard America, has also stated that they are coming to offer security for Spencer.

Chillingly ironic, an org whose rep described himself as a "school shooter" in prep for Cville was approached by Spencer for security at UF pic.twitter.com/tphdNTq3vp

— Atlanta Antifascists (@afainatl) October 16, 2017

Recently, blogs and news websites such as Restoring the Honor and Unicorn Riot have reported that one Spencer bodyguard in particular, is also a National Guardsman.

Alias "Caerulus Rex" appears to be Brian Brathovd, claimed to run security for #UniteTheRight & be in @AlabamaNG https://t.co/bE1Ukf6Efg pic.twitter.com/dIBwMP7Ldf

— Unicorn Riot (@UR_Ninja) October 17, 2017

University is Paying over $500,000 to Protect Spencer and Will Shut Down Key Student Services as a State of Emergency Brings in More Police

Much as with the recent talks in Berkeley with Ben Shapiro and Milo Yiannopoulos, the university will shut down vital student services in order to better police the campus. This again flies in the face of the talk of the university that they want to keep students safe. According to Unicorn Riot

After legal threats led the University of Florida to agree to host neo-nazi speaker Richard Spencer, local officials have stated that they expect to spend over $500,000 on security despite only being able to charge a fraction of that cost to host the event. The school had previously cancelled a speaking event by Spencer in September citing safety concerns, but Spencer’s event has now been officially confirmed as taking place on October 19th.

One of the University of Florida’s top doctors recently told the Washington Post that the security operation to protect Richard Spencer on October 19 involves closing a major outpatient clinic and surgery center, disrupting students’ ability to access medical services. No student group at the University of Florida has invited Spencer, who is simply renting space for his own private event.

Through public records requests sent to city officials in Gainesville, Unicorn Riot has obtained documents that shed light on police preparations to create a safe space for Spencer and his supporters, who are expected to be met with thousands of anti-racist counter-protesters.

Security plan ordered by @FLgovscott/@UF admin disrupts key student services to allow a private nazi event on campus https://t.co/SuKZ368IHH pic.twitter.com/HKdp0HOVTt

— Unicorn Riot (@UR_Ninja) October 16, 2017

On Friday, October 6, Gainesville Police were looking to finalize a Mutual Aid Agreement that would bring outside law enforcement from all over Florida into town on October 19 to protect Spencer and his white nationalist fans from anti-racist counter-protests. Senior Assistant City Attorney Lee C. Libby forwarded the agreement for review to the city’s Risk Management departing, writing “GPD is trying to get this out to the Florida Police Chief’s Association before lunch so they can finalize mutual aid assistance for the Richard Spencer event.”

While the language in the memorandum makes reference to the “enthusiastic exercise of free speech” by both white supremacists and anti-racists, the nature of the police mission is spelled out clearly as “providing security for the Richard Spencer and/or National Policy Institute event.” The generic agreement, with blank spaces to be filled in by each assisting Florida agency, requests “operational assistance…for security planning, training, execution, and post-event law enforcement operations.”

We Need to Oppose the neo-Nazis in Mass Numbers

Poor and working-class people face a barrage of attacks on a daily basis, communities of color most especially. On all levels, we are told by those in power, from the heads of the Democratic Party to the Trump administration, that we need to let them handle the disaster of industrial capitalism. But all around us, things just keep getting worse. From the lack of response to ever growing disasters, to the slow deadly grind of neoliberalism that is destroying our communities, our lives, and the living environment, the established order has only one answer: business as usual. Meanwhile in the background, groups of fascists and white nationalists are attempting gain power in the shadow of Trump’s growing debacle while pushing policy, as neo-Nazi and far-Right parties are on the march worldwide.

In the face of growing reactionary violence, we have to come together and get organized. We have to recognize the calls to “ignore them and they’ll go away” for what they are – distractions from the task at hand. We can’t ignore white supremacist violence, we have to mobilize in mass numbers across our communities to route them out. The more of us there are, the safer we are in driving them from the streets.

The fascists have the State, we have each other.

Stay tuned to @NoNazisAtUF and @IGD_News for updates.

#NoNazisAtUF

 

POSTER PDF

Categories: News

Final Straw: Autonomous Northern California Fire Relief Efforts

Tue, 10/17/2017 - 22:21

The post Final Straw: Autonomous Northern California Fire Relief Efforts appeared first on It's Going Down.

Listen and Download Here

I’d like to share a Final Straw Radio mini-episode, a conversation with Emilio of the currently unofficial Sonoma County IWW, or Industrial Workers of the World. This chapter doesn’t yet have an official charter but they were in the process or organizing one when the fires in Northern California started last week and have used this as a platform for fund-raising and trying to work out solidarity relief in Santa Rosa, the seat of Sonoma County.

For this chat, Emilio and I talk about the weather patterns of northern coastal California, relief efforts by the Red Cross and other NGO’s around shelter and care distribution, what their nascent chapter of the IWW is trying to do and related topics. To find more about their chapter, you can go onto Fedbook and stay tuned in the conversation for their relief phone number, a few material needs you can provide from a distance and ways to get involved if you’re in the area.

Categories: News

Shelbyville, TN: Stop the Nazi and KKK Rally October 28th

Tue, 10/17/2017 - 22:12

The post Shelbyville, TN: Stop the Nazi and KKK Rally October 28th appeared first on It's Going Down.

Social Media Event Here

Bradley Griffin, who posts under the name “Hunter Wallace” on his blog Occidental Dissent, has announced that a “White Lives Matter” rally will be held in Shelbyville, Tennessee three days before Halloween.

According to him this will be organized by Nationalist Front, the coalition of of organizations that includes not only the White Lives Matter organization, but also Matthew Heimbach’s Traditionalist Worker Party, the National Socialist Movement, League of the South and Vanguard America. In short the very same people who were responsible for the violence in Charlottesville are bringing it to Tennessee. In fact, before this was called a “White Lives Matter” Rally, it was called “Unite the Right 2.0” recalling the Aug. 12th event that ended with the death of Charlottesville resident Heather Heyer allegedly at the hands of someone who was seen earlier holding a Vanguard America shield.

This is the third event this year in Tennessee that locals are mobilizing against, the other two being the American Renaissance conference in July just outside Nashville and the Stormfront conference in Crossville just a few weeks ago. They are looking forward to making a go at this one as well!

Details: 

Saturday, October 28th, 9 AM – 2 PM

North Cannon Blvd and Lane Parkway (North West Corner), Shelbyville, Tennessee. Ride share information and more details on this page. Background info here.

Categories: News

The Poetry of Flames: The Arson Trials in France, From the Courtroom to the Streets

Tue, 10/17/2017 - 21:15

The post The Poetry of Flames: The Arson Trials in France, From the Courtroom to the Streets appeared first on It's Going Down.

This report details the trials following the arson of a police car set on fire in May 2016 during the upheaval against the Loi Travail in France, and all the expressions of solidarity that accompanied them—including a fresh outbreak of arsons against police infrastructure.

Months pass, years pass, yet the situation in France remains unstable as the rhythm of social and political struggles accelerates. The events we will describe here are a consequence of the political situation in France and in Europe as a whole: the repercussions of the 2008 international financial crisis are still noticeable in our daily lives, European governments and their security policies can’t contain or palliate the “refugee crisis,” the ISIS attacks, the State of Emergency, the COP21, increasing disillusionment with traditional political parties, never-ending austerity measures, elections in which the far right is gaining more and more power.

As is typical in France, the end of the summer holidays heralded the resumption of struggle. Indeed, the newly elected and self-proclaimed “revolutionary”1 French President Emmanuel Macron and his government are preparing a new liberal version of the labor legislation that was the cause of the struggle against the loi travail.. The current version was imposed by the previous Socialist government only a year ago, under Hollande’s presidency, despite a wave of social upheaval that shook France in protest against it.

Demonstration against the new Loi Travail (labor law) on September 12, 2017.

Facing this new offensive aimed at making labor conditions and life itself ever more precarious, people once again took the streets on September 12 to fight against the new “Loi Travail XXL.” You can read a short review of the events here and watch a video here.More demonstrations are planned to increase the pressure on the new government and its neoliberalism-2.0 vision of society. In anticipation of the first major demonstration against the new work reform, Emmanuel Macron addressed the local French community while visiting Athens:

“(…) Democracy here is fragile; the peace that we have invented in Europe after the War is fragile; the spirit of culture that we have defended and carried here is fragile; this universal drive that brings you here today is fragile. This is why all of this is so fragile that I want to say two things in conclusion. I will be absolutely determined and I will not concede anything—neither to the lazybones, nor to the cynical, nor to the extremists. And I ask you to have the same determination, every single day. Do not concede anything—neither to the egoists, nor to the pessimists, nor to the extremists.”

We can appreciate the contempt and cynicism of this quote.

But the most significant events of Septem”ber 2017 took place inside the High Court of Paris. Some 16 months after the events, nine individuals faced trial for participating in a spontaneous action and counter-protest in which a police car was set on fire. The trial was scheduled for September 19-22, 2017.”

The Day We Stole Fire

Lundimatin summarized the context surrounding the fire that happened on May 18, 2016 at Quai de Valmy.

In, May 2016, while the upheaval against the Loi Travail was still at its height, a police union named Alliance seized the RépubliqueSquare in Paris, the site of the ephemeral French movement Nuit Debout. The union’s main objective was to stage an illusory reconciliation between the French population and their police. To do so, the union invited some major figures from the Front National, the far-right and fascist French political party. As police agents took pictures with fascist stars, other police units that were still on the clock protected their colleagues’ gathering.

Tensions increased between counter-protesters and law enforcement units, who were shoving and pepper-spraying activists as usual. A spontaneous march broke out in response. On its way through the streets of Paris, the crowd encountered a police car stuck in traffic. The car was attacked and set on fire.

The burning of the police car.

In response, Manuel Valls, then Prime Minister, said that he wanted “relentless sanctions” inflicted on the individuals who took part in the attack. The judicial machinery didn’t take long to designate and arrest its first suspects. When the trials started, two defendants remained incarcerated, six were under judicial control, and another individual couldn’t be found, as he never responded to the summons sent by the court.

Threatened by the uncontrollable rage rebels had unleashed in the streets, which sent sparks of insurrection flying throughout Paris and other cities, the French government saw in this event a perfect opportunity to re-establish order and reassert its authority. As the trials approached, we all knew that they would be dramatically publicized and politicized, as they would pit anti-authoritarians against the institutions of the police and the state itself—and also because the authorities could use the verdict to intimidate anyone who might wish to express opposition towards the state, its laws, and its policies.

Will they succeed? That has yet to be seen.

Clashes in the streets during demonstrations against the new loi travail.

Reducing Their World to Ashes

The following text has been assembled from translations and adaptations of various reports on the trial hearings and articles related to the case. In sharing these narratives, we hope to offer a broader understanding of the case, and to reveal the obvious political repression and spectacle organized by the court, the police, and the state against our companions.

Day 1: September 19, 2017

This article was originally published on Wednesday, September 20, 2017 by Non Fides.

Paris: Report on the First Day of the Trials Concerning the Police Car Set on Fire

Large numbers of people converged in front of the 14th chamber of the high court, even before the starting hour of the hearing. Journalists were there too. First, they took pictures of those who wanted to be photographed; then they snapped away at the defendants when they were asked to enter the courtroom. Their microphones hovered over the heads of the supporters. Part of the crowd protested and reacted: some umbrellas were opened and brandished so no pictures could be taken, several familiar faces were heckled, and later on, some stickers were stuck on camera lenses. During the defendants’ exit, by a side door, a welcome stampede enabled the crowd to push the journalists away while they were trying to steal some images.

Meanwhile, people rushed in front of the closed barriers and slowly started to warm up by asking for a bigger courtroom. Numerous lawyers also entered the room one by one.

There were at least 18 people in lawyers’ clothing inside the room.

The police let the judiciary press enter the room until the box was full; then they let the defendants’ families enter one by one after checking their IDs. Cops insisted on selecting who was allowed to enter the room and who was not, so only those considered “really close,” “the parents,” “the dad and the mom” were allowed to enter the room. Eventually, however, they ended up letting some of the defendants’ close friends enter without asking for any ID. Finally, they announced that five or six seats were still available for the public.

Inside, some seats remained available, as well as some space for those who preferred to remain standing, but a large part of the public stayed outside with the rest of the journalists.

Once the judges were seated, a lawyer took the floor to complain about the lack of space and demanded a bigger room “in the name of all the defense lawyers.” Someone in the audience pointed out that the room was also way too small to welcome all the relatives and the public who wanted to show support at the trial. The judge replied curtly that this person was not allowed to speak.

But as an answer to the lawyer’s request, the hearing was suspended a first time.

It resumed after half an hour. Some additional chairs were brought for the lawyers and in order to enable more journalists to enter the room.

When the judge tried to call the roll of the defendants, the lawyers went further by explaining that the conditions of the trial were not “worthy of a normal defense,” as they were prevented from having physical access to their files. A lawyer added that it was important to let the journalists enter the courtroom, as it was a “symbolic case” involving police violence. Another took the prosecutor to task for being personally responsible for scheduling the trial in such a small room. In their turn, journalists put pressure on the court to allow their colleagues outside to report on the hearing. To that end, they even threatened to leave the courtroom all together.

The president of the bar, previously called by the defense lawyers, asked for some calm and to take into consideration the observations and requests made by the defense. The judge responded that additional chairs had already been brought to the room. The latter was also talking at some point about letting everyone in the audience sit in on the hearing by establishing some kind of rotation, to take place every two hours. He also insisted on the “serenity” wherein the trial had to take place.

Meanwhile, outside, the slogan “a bigger room” was amplified to such an extent that we could actually hear it over the repeated calls for calm made by the Judge. Throughout the entire hearing, we would hear inside the courtroom all the slogans chanted by those who remained outside and continued to demand “a bigger room” and freedom for the prisoners.

The defense lawyers stood up to officially protest.

One of them explained that it would be impossible to rotate the public: how to choose among them? How to deal with those who would not want to leave? Should we rotate the journalists too? He asked for the hearing to be suspended for the rest of the day and for the trial to resume in a bigger room the next day.

Another comment: even with the added chairs, the lawyers didn’t have access to their computers, and couldn’t open their files properly, while the prosecutor was comfortably seated on his chair with a direct access to a computer. There was no “equality of arms.” The Judge told him not to be so excessive, and asserted that this problem is always solved in practice.

A lawyer threatened to move the arguments to the juridical field and cited the European Convention on Human Rights, as well as the rights of the defense. He threatened to file requests to nullify the trial if it continued under such circumstances.

The judge took him at his word and said that the court was ready to deliberate on referral requests as well as on nullity requests if they were formulated, and this after the prosecutor’s opinion. The lawyers confirmed.

The prosecutor didn’t have any opinion of the adjournment’s request, as he didn’t know the availability of the other rooms in the court. He insisted on saying that “since the first minute of the hearing, the defense’s rights were respected” and insisted on the efforts provided by the court, explaining that the day’s circumstances were the fault of lawyers who added their names to the original list of participants, and that the public and the journalists already had enough space.

The room growled inside. We could still hear chants and shouts coming from outside.

The hearing was suspended once again so the judges could rule on the request for adjournment.

In their turn, the judges announced the end of the hearing for the day. The trial would resume the following day (Wednesday September 20) inside the 16th Chamber at 1:30 pm, one floor downstairs. We were expecting a criminal chamber (like that day) with probably more space for the lawyers and at best 20 to 30 more people in the public, but probably no more “serenity” than that day.

Anyway, the cops took the people gathered outside of the room off the premises of the high court as they chanted numerous slogans, including “Fire to the prisons!” and “Freedom for all!”

Outside the courtroom.

Day 2: September 20, 2017

This article was originally posted on Thursday September 21, 2017 by Non Fides.

Paris: Report on the Second Day of the Trials Concerning the Police Car Set on Fire

On Thursday, the hearings began at 10 am in the 16th Chamber. The pressure was set up from the entrance of the Court where gendarmes physically searched bags after checking them through x-ray scanners. They were especially looking for stickers, handouts, and umbrellas as they had received the order to seize such items. These security measures blocked the progress of the waiting line. As a result, numerous supporters found themselves stuck outside, as well as four defendants who hadn’t been summoned. The latter finally gained access to the courtroom at 1:50 pm.

The hearing opened with the roll call of the defendants and the civil parties, the reminder of the charges, and the roles attributed to everyone involved in the case.

Then, several lawyers argued to nullify the trial. First, the lawyers of two individuals still incarcerated claimed that their detention was irregular, as no written decisions were published after the previous hearing on July 17, 2017. Another lawyer filed a conclusion concerning the inadmissibility of considering the police union Alliance as a civil party in this trial. They based their argumentation on specific case laws that specify the conditions in which a professional union can or cannot form a civil party during a trial.

The Alliance lawyer answered this request by contesting the admissibility of the conclusions, arguing that Alliance has been a civil party since the beginning of the trial, and such criticism should have been made earlier.

After the lawyers replied to the arguments presented by the prosecutor, the court left the room for a moment, then returned. It was decided that the “incidents would be added to the content,” which means that the decisions regarding the requests to nullify would be pronounced only during the verdict of the trial.

A dozen police officers from Alliance occupying two rows in the back of the room were making comments such as “Can’t they force these assholes to stand up?” (referring to the individuals who refused to stand up when the members of the court entered the room), to which some people answered them: “Shut up!”

Then the judge began summarizing the facts. The testimonies of some storekeepers were read, numerous videos were presented and watched, and the statement of Allison Barthélémy—the passenger officer in the burnt car—was read, even if she wasn’t present inside the courtroom.

Next, Kevin Philippy, the driver of the car, was interrogated at the bar. Some laughs were heard inside the room when he asserted that his “aggressor” was targeting his head because he “wanted to put him on the ground so he could finish [read: kill] him.”

The judge continued the summary of the investigation, mentioning the interrogations of some individuals arrested on May 18 but not accused in the case, as well as the testimony of the anonymous cop who testified against four of the defendants. A lawyer highlighted that the chronology in the judge’s account was incorrect, as the latter hadn’t mentioned the interrogations of the actual defendants yet, while people were arrested before the publication of the testimony of the anonymous police officer (the intelligence police officer code name during the trial was T142). The judge justified himself saying that he did so “to be clearer.”

The first defendant was interrogated. She appeared before the judge in custody and accused of throwing a small metal post into the front windshield of the police car. The judge quoted her previous interrogations and commented on several pictures attached to the file, but the questioning ended soon as the defendant refused to talk.

A second defendant was called to the bar. He was accused of hitting the car and one of the police officers with a metallic rod. He recognized the facts and explained them by the increasing anger he felt while taking part of several demonstrations and realizing the disproportionate police violence during them. He ended his explanation by saying that he regretted his actions and apologized to the police officer. For almost two hours, the judge and the prosecutor interrogated him. They confronted him with other videos of the demonstration, in order to try to demonstrate that he was also violent towards police officers on other occasions.

After a hearing suspension, the judge reviewed the calendar of the trial. He announced that the discussions would start on Thursday and Friday at 10 am and the verdict would be given on Friday September 29.

Then a third defendant was called to the bar. Only accused of “participating in the gathering,” he was questioned on some elements found during a house search, in particular on his helmet collection, on the choice of the brand of his jacket, on the events of the demonstration, and on the fact that the latter was unauthorized. The question of knowing when he decided to put his hood on seemed to be really dear to the judge’s heart, who was showing at the same time a pixelated picture in which we were supposed to see the defendant putting his hood on. The room protested, but according to the favorite sentence of the judge, “everyone will appreciate this.” (We thought that it was his role to “appreciate” whether the evidence was correct and admissible, but whatever.)

In turn, the fourth and last defendant of the day was called to the bar. He was accused with the same charges as the previous one, but also for refusing to have his DNA taken during his arrest. In a situation similar to the previous one, an object was extracted from the sealed evidence in order to learn whether it was a truncheon or a broken stick of a shovel. Then a debate began regarding the presence of “tear gas” in his house (we supposed that the judge was referring to pepper spray).

The courtroom reacted when the judge presented some pictures that supposedly showed the defendant. It was obvious that it wasn’t him in the pictures, especially because the individual in the so-called evidence was a smoker, while the defendant is not. His lawyer protested that there was no objective element in the accusation. The defendant admitted his presence at the demonstration but insisted that he wasn’t next to the car during the attack and that he wasn’t masked.

At 8 pm, the hearing was over. It would resume the next day at 10 am for the interrogations of the other four defendants.

The police intercepted two individuals as they exited the court and forced them into an unmarked police car. They were sent to an unknown destination, maybe because they were seen on video cameras putting stickers inside the Court premises.

Arrests at the Exit of the High Court, during the Trial Concerning the Police Car Set on Fire

It seems that a small group of people were blocked at the exit of the court with their identity taken. Finally, two individuals were immobilized in one corner of the courtyard (the walls had bars on them) before being taken away for having put some stickers inside the premises. The police may have used video surveillance to bring these charges. Some of the people present during the arrest reacted and tried to block the police car that was taking the two arrestees away.

If the crowd had been more numerous and more determined, it would probably have been possible to make this arrest more difficult to manage, or at least not to let the cops do their dirty work so quietly.

“Fire to all the prisons! Hurray!

Day 3: September 21, 2017

This article was originally posted on Friday, September 22, 2017 by Non Fides.

Paris: Report on the Third Day of the Trials Concerning the Police Car Set on Fire

The hearings took place from 10 am until 7:30 pm, with an hour break at noon.

The four defendants who hadn’t been interrogated the previous day were questioned one after another. The first one was accused of hitting the driver and breaking the back windshield of the car with a post. The second one was accused of having been present in the area during the attack. The third was accused of having pointed out the cop car during the movement of the crowd through the street and for having raised his arms to the sky when the police car was set on fire. The fourth and last defendant was accused of having broken the back right side window of the car with a small post.

Then the judge presented the evidence against the ninth defendant, accused of throwing the flare inside the car. This defendant wasn’t present in the courtroom and wasn’t represented by a lawyer.

The atmosphere inside the courtroom was tense. Two individuals who came to support the defendants were expelled, and one of them was directly thrown off the court premises. Gendarmes were threatening us with expulsion if we looked at our phones, while the Alliance cops (who came to support the civil parties) seemed to play “Candy Crush” in the back of the room. On several occasions, there were loud reactions among us concerning the remarks of the prosecutors or the behavior of the gendarmes and Alliance cops.

At one point, the gendarmes in front of the courtroom tried to admit a pro-cop individual dressed in a blue, white, and red shirt (patriotism is fashionable). It was the same individual who had been insulting people the previous day. Some supporters decided to block him, but unfortunately police officers took that opportunity to expel some supporters from the premises of the high court. The pro-cop guy was permitted to stay in the courtroom while most of the evicted persons were not allowed to re-enter the court.

The two individuals arrested the previous day were released after 24 hours in jail, with no further action taken against them so far. Inside the corridors of the court, an investigation was taking place. Two police officers with photos of anarchist stickers were wandering around looking at the walls. At some point, the closest restrooms were entirely disinfected and cleaned—but not for long, as soon after, they were covered with graffiti and stickers once again.

In addition, the previous night, a total of 1500 square meters of police barracks containing vehicles and offices had been set on fire in Grenoble in solidarity with the defendants. The next afternoon, during the demonstration in Paris, the cortège de tête (the head of the march) was chanting: “A la 1re, à la 2,e à la 3e voiture brûlée, liberté pour tous les inculpés.” (“At the 1st, at the 2nd, at the 3rd car set on fire, freedom for all the defendants.”)

Footage of the demonstration that took place in Paris on September 21.

Day 4: September 22, 2017

This article was originally posted on Saturday September 32, 2017 by Non Fides.

Paris: The Prosecutor Requests Years of Prison in the Case of the Police Car Set on Fire

The verdict, initially scheduled for September 29 at 11 am, was postponed and delivered later. A more precise date was given the following Wednesday, September 27, the day when the lawyers would finish their pleas from 9:30 am until 1 pm, during a final hearing. Moreover, at the end of the day, around 9:30pm, the court had to decide whether to release Kara and Krem, still incarcerated at the time of the trial. The court refused to release them. In solidarity, part of the audience shouted “Freedom” and “Courage” inside the courtroom.

The prosecution’s closing speech was delivered by the two prosecutors, Olivier Dabin and Emmanuelle Quindry. They said it was “the trial of some rioters” organized “in a horde.” Other choice quotations included, “Where and who are the fascists and extremists when we fight the police, the justice system, the journalists?” “During a house search, we found the stickers of the ultra-left movement.” “I challenge anyone to say that justice covers police violence.” “The great Lénine said, ‘Anarchists are reactionaries.’” “For the uncompromising ones, silence is a right but it is also a silence of approval.”

The charges and threatened sentences:

  1. Against the individuals accused of participating in “a gathering with the objective of committing violence,” but also for “voluntary violence on a PDAP” (Person in Charge of Public Authority), with 4 aggravating circumstances: violence in an assembly, use of weapons, and masked face:
    • Joachim (Swiss): 8 years imprisonment coupled with a detention order (he is currently on the run; an arrest warrant has been issued, as he is accused of throwing the flare that set the cop car on fire).
    • Antonin: 5 years imprisonment with a one-year suspended sentence coupled with an order to be kept in jail and forbidden to take part in any demonstration in Paris for 3 years. He already served 10 months of preventive detention.
    • Nicolas: 5 years imprisonment with a two-year suspended sentence without a detention order (due to his “clear act of contrition during his hearing” and the absence of “recidivism risk” according to the prosecutor), and being prohibited from taking part in any demonstration in Paris for 3 years. He already served 13 months of preventive detention/remand.
    • Krem: 4 years imprisonment, currently kept in detention and facing a ban on taking part in any demonstration in Paris for 3 years. He had been in preventive detention/remand for 7 months.
    • Kara: 3 years imprisonment with a one-year suspended sentence and a 3 years ban of entering the French territory (due to her US nationality). She had been in preventive detention/remand for 16 months already.
    • Thomas: 3 years imprisonment with a two-year suspended sentence coupled with a ban on participating in any demonstration in Paris for 3 years. No detainment order (this means he faces one year of actual imprisonment).
  2. Against the individuals only accused of having taken part in “a gathering with the objective of committing violence”:
    • Angel: one-year suspended sentence and a ban on taking part in any demonstration in Paris for 3 years. He already spent 42 days in preventive detention/remand.
    • Bryan: one-year suspended sentence and a ban on taking part in any demonstration in Paris for 3 years. A €1000 fine for refusing to give his DNA. He already spent 4 days in preventive detention/remand.
    • Leandro: one-year suspended sentence and a ban on taking part in any demonstration in Paris for 3 years. He also already spent 4 days in preventive detention/remand.

    Requests made by the “civil parties”:

    • The police union Alliance asked for €5000 for “moral prejudice” regarding their professions (with arguments such as “these acts of violence are similar to terrorist acts”). The lawyer of Alliance is Ms. Delphine Des Villettes.
    • Kevin Philippy, the cop who was driving the car, asked for €30,000 of “damages and interests” (his lawyer is Ms. Michèle Launay). Kevin Philippy, security assistant, tried to pass the official exam to become a policeman four times without success. Thanks to the incident of the police car arson, he was exempted from the exam and accepted into the police school of Sens, from which he “graduated” on March 20, 2017. Currently a trainee police officer, he will be given tenure in March 2018.
    • The judicial agent of the State asked for €1500.

Bonfire of the vanities.

Day 5: September 27, 2017

This article was published on September 28, 2017 by Paris-Luttes.Info.

Report on the Last Day of the Trial for the Police Car Set on Fire

The defendants Kara and Krem attended, but in custody, under arrest.

This morning, the atmosphere was really quiet inside the Court. Absolutely no noise from outside disrupted the pleas of the two lawyers besides the anxious sound of the sirens of police cars.

The hearing started with the plea of Antoine Vey, the lawyer representing Nicolas.

In front of a rigid, even stoical judge, Antoine Vey began by denouncing the political aspect of the trial: the instructions of Manuel Valls, who had been Prime Minister at the time, but also the use of police premises during custody in which flags of the police union Alliance (known for extremely reactionary politics) were displayed on the walls.

He also highlighted the fact that the prosecutor shook hands with the civil parties when she arrived at the court that morning, adding, “You would never do that with the defendants!”

He explained that the defendants having been described as guilty even before the trial took place, and that this had had serious consequences for them.

Antoine Vey defended Nicolas affirming that he “did not handle the events, he did not manage this violence. He did not claim it.” After quoting Foucault about “the facts, the sanction, the torture,” the lawyer asked for the sentences to be personalized.

“Because there is violence during demonstrations, we should not take part in them? (…) Is it the ideas that are on trial?”

Antoine Vey came back to Nicolas’s personal political path, how he had been shocked by the violence of law enforcement agents towards demonstrators during the protests against the Loi Travail.Nevertheless, his client is not an “ideologue.”

“Madam the prosecutor, you remind me of Javert!” the lawyer said frankly concerning the severity of the sentences demanded by the two prosecutors on Friday, September 22. (In Victor Hugo’s novel Les Misérables, Javert is a police inspector who becomes obsessed with the pursuit and punishment of Jean Valjean, an escaped convict.)

“Being armed doesn’t mean wearing a black vest, a beanie, and some sunglasses!”

Then, he explained that the “weapon” wasn’t an iron bar but a flexible metallic rod. He demanded that Nicolas should be judged with clemency. “He was severely punished, he is inserted in society. There is absolutely no more reason to put him back to prison, except for the sake of a putrid political message.”

Antoine Vey concluded his plea affirming that: “If you send him back to prison, you would have judged him, but you would have not brought back justice.”

Then, it was the turn of Arié Alimi, Antonin’s lawyer, to plead.

He started his speech by showing some compassion towards the civil parties, then reminded the court that his grandfather was a police instructor in Algeria during the state of emergency.

He explained that since the events in Sivens (where the young demonstrator Rémy Fraisse was murdered on the night of October 25, 2014 by a police grenade), there has been a clear change of doctrine regarding law enforcement.

“How can we explain why there are no more children and strollers during demonstrations nowadays? (…) Before, the doctrine was to keep the crowd away, today it is to hurt and to discredit a social movement.”

He said to spare a thought for Rémy Fraisse, the Traoré family, Théo, and the Bergson’s student (all victims of police violence). He expressed himself strongly against the imbalance in the prosecutors’ closing speech.

“An eight-month suspended sentence for the police officer who fractured the nose of the high-school student of Bergson—against eight years imprisonment coupled with an arrest warrant for a flare thrown inside a police car! This is not intelligible!”

For several years, Antonin was constantly targeted by the DRPP (the Intelligence department of the Parisian police). In the 11 cases the DRPP presented against him, Antonin was discharged, or the cases were dropped.

“This is a calumnious denunciation against my client, I can go so far as to say so.”

The lawyer denounced the administrative logic of the famous “notes blanches” (“white notes”) of the Intelligence service. “The anonymous testimony doesn’t make any sense anymore.”

Arié Alimi analyzed the anonymous testimony (“T142”). The police officer indicated at numerous occasions that he didn’t want to answer the lawyers’ questions. According to Arié Alimi, the testimony is no longer credible. The police officer’s refusal to explain his statements could allow the defense to initiate legal proceedings against him.

Antonin had an injured wrist in May 18, 2016, an injury that he received a month and a half before the day of the demonstration, “therefore, he couldn’t lift the post during the events” explained his lawyer.

“We are confronted with a method in which we want a result, an answer, from the very start!”

Then, Alimi returned to the clothing and physical details mentioned during the hearings that were used to charge Antonin. Nike shoes, for example, are a very common brand among young people. Keeping your phone in your pocket is only doing “what everybody else does.” Antonin has dark rings under his eyes? A lot of young people “spend their nights in front of the television or partying.”

The lawyer brandished several pictures taken from videos and printed on cardboard paper to support his arguments concerning the common clothing features of demonstrators. According to Arié Alimi, the prosecutor didn’t use all the pictures available in the file. The prosecutor “lied intentionally.” The testimony of the police officer was that Antonin was wearing a neck warmer and not a hood; moreover, during house search, they didn’t find the incriminating vest. “He is not the aggressor!” said his lawyer. The “kung-fu” police officer (a nickname given to Kevin Philippy, the police officer assaulted during the events) didn’t even recognize Antonin behind the one-way glass.

“What additional proofs do you want? (…) Why did we stubbornly and against all odds accuse Antonin? (…) We absolutely wanted to condemn a political opponent. Politics contaminate our justice, we are in France, not in Russia!”

Arié Alimi asked for discharge for Antonin.

The verdict of the trial was to be delivered on Wednesday, October 11 at 10 am.

The court cleared out while Krem and Kara were handcuffed before being sent back to prison. Shouts of “Freedom!” echoed in the hallway of the high court of Paris.

Our rage is inextinguishable.

Then, Slowly, the Fire Spreads…

Solidarity has always been a core principle of anarchist values. Without a doubt, it is an extremely important weapon, especially during moments of hardship or isolation. As in every upheaval that ends with massive waves of repression, the demonstrations against the Loi Travail in 2016 sadly resulted in numerous people being injured, arrested, and prosecuted.

Nevertheless, acts of solidarity broke out immediately. Activists snatched arrestees back from the police during demonstrations, preserving their freedom. People gathered in front of police stations where friends were arrested and organized benefit shows to cover arrestees’ legal expenses.

Regarding the arson trials, you can find a detailed list of solidarity actions here. A version of this list is available here in English.

One action even made the national news. In the middle of a week of the trials, some people decided to send a clear message to the state and all forms of authority, expressing love and solidarity with the defendants. On the night of Thursday, September 21, a group entered a police barracks and set it on fire. Here is the translation of their communiqué:

Incendiary Solidarity

This Thursday (Sept. 21), at 3 am, second day of the trial of the burnt cop car.

We have entered the gendarmerie barracks of Vigny-Musset. We set on fire 6 intervention vans and 2 logistics trucks. The garage and the warehouse were devastated for more than 1500 square meters.

This action is part of the wave of solidarity attacks with the individuals on trial during these days.

Big hugs to Kara and Krem.

A thought for Damien, who was beaten up by cops recently.

Whatever the outcome of the trial will be, we will continue attacking the police and their justice.

Our hostility is a spreading fire.

Some nocturnals.

…and the Pressure Increases

Needless to say, the attack against the gendarmerie station, as well as the intensity of the arson, caught the attention of the French government. According to the French newspaper Le Monde, the Minister of the Interior, Gerard Collomb, who is well known for his authoritarian tendencies, announced his “consternation” and “indignation” about this attack. He added: “The gendarmerie will do everything possible to seek and identify the authors of this particularly serious act, so they can be accountable for their actions in front of the court. (…) All measures are being taken so the equipment and the vehicles can be replaced rapidly.”

Another mainstream article, this time from Libération, explains that the entire offices of the gendarmerie were reduced to ashes, including the criminal investigation department. Moreover, the “wave of attacks” mentioned in the arson communiqué echoes the arson of five police vehicles in Limoges on Tuesday, September 19, 2017, a few hours before the opening of the trial. In the same article, we learn that local authorities noticed that, lately, numerous anonymous arsonist actions and communiqués were posted on independent medias platforms such as Indymedia. According to the journalist, this reveals a special use of arson among some radicals, especially against “necro-technologies”: arson against a mobile phone antenna in Ardèche last July; arson of Enedis’ vehicles and offices in Grenoble last May and in the department of Drome last June (Enedis, or ERDF, is the company that controls and manages the electrical network in France); or against “social control,” like the arson of CCAS vehicles in Grenoble last March.

The remains of the police station in Grenoble.

Immediately following the appearance of this arson communiqué, the French authorities once again undertook to employ the chief tools at their disposal, fear and intimidation. Even if we all know that the state will always defend its legitimacy and power by all means necessary, we can perceive an obvious escalation of state repression against anarchists and radicals. One of the best examples is the aftermath of G20 in Hamburg. After the rebellion against the G20 summit that lit up this past summer, in addition to several trials and sentences requested against people arrested during the G20, the German government struck back against “left-wing extremism” by shutting down Linksunten Indymedia and raiding several houses.

In France, several hours after publishing the communiqué on their website, Indymedia Grenoble received an email from the Office Central de Lutte contre la Criminalité liée aux Technologies de l’Information et de la Communication (a police organization dedicated in fighting cyber-criminality), asking them to remove the arson communiqué within 24 hours and threatening to shut down the media platform. The communiqué is considered to be “advocating terrorist acts.” You can read a copy of the email sent to Indymedia Grenoble hereIndymedia Nantes also received this official request. Surprisingly, and without giving a clear explanation of their decisions, both websites decided to give way to the authorities’ request. You can read their communiqués (still in French) here and here. Meanwhile, mainstream media outlets published the same communiqué without receiving any threats from authorities.

These events raise several questions: How independent can alternative media be? Why obey the threats of the police and the state? How “safe” are we when we use such platforms? How far are authorities willing to go to track down anarchists and other radical activists? But also—how can we effectively resist this escalating repression? It is more important than ever to discuss these issues as the witch hunt continues in the streets, the courtrooms, and online.

The remains of the police station in Grenoble.

The Verdict: The State Attempts to Extinguish the Flames

The following is an adaptation and translation of an article posted on October 11, 2017 by lundimatin.

Quai Valmy: Summary of the Sentencing

The nine defendants were condemned to a total of 30 years of prison and more than 40,000 euros in damages.

The police presence was particularly visible this morning in front of the high court and inside the halls of the palace. Numerous gendarmes were also supporting the walls of the courtroom. Once the defendants sat down, the hearing started with the conclusions raised in limine litis. The court stated that having the police union Alliance as a civil party in this trial was admissible, and that the detention orders against Kara and Ari (aka Krem) were legitimate.

Then the court examined the content of the case file and the main charges selected. The president invoked a restrictive use of the concept of participating in a gathering with the purpose of committing violence, and concluded that the simple fact of hiding one’s face wasn’t enough to confirm this charge. Regarding the intentional element mentioned in the charges, he reckoned that the individual had to show a will to participate, or for others to participate, in these acts of violence.

Concerning the anonymous testimony, without discussing the quality or legitimacy of the witness, the court insisted on its convincing force, but pointed out that this testimony itself wasn’t enough to establish guilt. Therefore, other elements and evidence should support it. Regarding the acts of severe violence, he highlighted that, apart from the use of the metal bar, posts, and flares or smoke bombs, the fact of hitting an immobilized vehicle with bare hands, while two persons where still inside the vehicle, was sufficient to be characterized. Concerning the destruction of the vehicle by arson, the Court concluded that the collective action contributed to the realization of the damage.

Then, the court discussed the facts.

Regarding Angel and Bryan, the court concluded that the charge of participation in a violent gathering couldn’t be used against them from the moment that the investigation failed to establish where the two defendants were during the assault on the car, so the court discharged them. However, Bryan was sentenced for refusing to give his DNA.

Concerning Kara, the court reminded the audience that she recognized her culpability. Then, via the voice of its president M. Alçufrom, the court talked at length about the hypothetical consequences of her action… “And what if the windshield had shattered? The two police officers would probably be dead…” The president even discussed Kara’s journey: she came from the US, then stayed in Germany and Kurdistan, adding that “she held back from assaulting police officers in other countries,” and affirmed that somewhere else, for such actions, “she could have vanished into thin air in the proper sense, as well as in the figurative sense.” According to the president, she “took the liberty of acting that way” because she knew the behavior of the French police.

Regarding Nicolas, the president noted that he immediately recognized the facts, then insisted on the seriousness of the committed acts. M. Alçufrom considered that when exiting his vehicle in flames, the police officer “tried to escape from a certain death,” this is why it is important “to honor the courage of M. Philippy,” who “wasn’t a kung-fu police officer, but a courageous man.” Considering the regrets expressed by the defendant, the court estimated that “his recidivism risk was low.”

In the case of Antonin, the Court mentioned the “blunt identification” made by the anonymous witness. Then he took every single photograph presented by Arié Alimi (Antonin’s lawyer), examined all of them, and noticed some differences with the assailant. He even mentioned a different coloring of the eyebrows between the two individuals. However, the different color tones of the clothing could be attributed to the different angles and point of views of the pictures taken… On the fact that the anonymous witness (who pretended that he was constantly looking at Antonin during the action) didn’t see Antonin changing clothes, the president concluded, “there were too many people to see everything.”

The court retained as incriminating evidence the contradictory declarations of Antonin during the investigation, declarations that all turned out to be false. The court even asserted that the tracking and triangulation of his cellphone enabled them to locate him near the store he said he had spent the afternoon in, but unfortunately, there was nothing to prove that he was actually inside of it. The court imputed the blows against the driver to him, as well as the insertion of the post in the back windshield of the car, due to “the perfect correlation between the attacker and Antonin.” In the meantime, the court invoked “the absence of any reasonable doubt” regarding his identification. The president qualified these as acts “of extreme gravity” which embodied an “urban guerilla scene,” and asserted that Antonin attacked the police officers as some others would “attack black people because they are black.” Finally, the court also condemned the absence of regrets expressed from the defendant, the refusal to discuss the violence endured by the two police officers, and multiple internet researches on the effects of different acids. The president concluded by asserting the existence of a risk of recidivism.

Concerning Léandro, prosecuted for participating in a violent gathering, the court concluded that his behavior wasn’t passive, that he encouraged the authors of the violence by his presence. The president reminded him that when the court asked him why he didn’t step back when the attack started, he answered during the hearing that “he didn’t have to step back.” The court concluded with a “characterized” participation to the violent gathering.

Regarding Thomas, the president recalled in detail his behavior during the demonstration, mentioning the blows and punches he administered to the car, though this aspect hadn’t even been mentioned in the file previously. He was convicted for acts of violence and degradation.

Concerning Ari, the Court concluded that his passport picture matched in all criteria the picture of the assailant taken in the metro (his eyebrows and his two moles—note that this picture also precisely matched two other individuals at the beginning of the investigation…). Regarding the specific strand of hair, the court explained that they only based their identification on the black and white picture that was handed to the defense (and not the color photo inside the official case file). Then, they mentioned that the clothes seized in the squat (sunglasses and black gloves) were identical to those visible on the videos. Considering Ari guilty as charged, the court said that his silence didn’t enable them to know his motivation, but anyway, “no cause could justify the use of violence.”

To finish, the court concluded that Joachim (from Switzerland) had been identified in the picture, and that the study of his phone record allowed them to establish his actual presence in France during the events. The president concluded saying that Joachim could have killed the police officers and that a flare was at least as dangerous as, or even more dangerous than, a Molotov cocktail… [sic]

In conclusion, the following sentences were pronounced:

Angel: Discharged.

Bryan: Discharged for taking part to the gathering, but sentenced to a €1000 fine, with a reprieve of €500, for refusing to give his DNA.

Léandro: Guilty for taking part in the gathering, 1 year suspended prison sentence (and no ban on participating in demonstrations).

Thomas: Guilty, sentenced to 2 years imprisonment with a 1 year suspended sentence.

Kara: Guilty, sentenced to 4 years imprisonment with a 2 year suspended sentence, held in detention.

Ari: Guilty, 5 years imprisonment with a suspended sentence of 2 years and 5 months, held in detention.

Nicolas: Guilty, 5 years imprisonment with a suspended sentence of 2 years and 6 months, without a detention order.

Antonin: Guilty, legal recidivism, 5 years imprisonment with a 2 year suspended sentence without an order for detention.

Joachim: 7 years imprisonment with an arrest warrant.

The last six defendants were also condemned to pay a total of €5000 to the police union Alliance; €6100 to the State judicial agent for Mme. Allison Barthélémy; €7300 to the State judicial agent for M. Kévin Philippy; €10,000 to Mme. Barthélémy for her moral prejudice, and €12,000 to M. Phillipy for the prejudices endured. Finally, each of them would have to pay €600 for procedure costs…

A poster inviting people to gather in Ménilmontant on October 11 to respond to the verdict.

Yesterday, Today, or Tomorrow: The Fire Will Never Go Out!

Several gatherings were organized to greet the verdict of the trial on October 11, 2017. Many people gathered outside the court around 10 am to support the defendants. As mentioned in the article by lundimatin, numerous law enforcement units were protecting the surrounding area and entrances to the high court, which is located on Ile de la Cité in the center of Paris. According to one article, when the verdict was pronounced, people outside the courtroom shouted “Tout le monde déteste la police/la Justice,” “Ni oubli, ni pardon,” “Liberté!” (respectively, “Everyone hates the police/Justice,” “No forgetfulness, no forgiveness, “ “Freedom!”) before being pushed out of the building by police forces.

Later that night, several hundred people gathered in Ménilmontant despite the deployment of police forces in all the neighboring districts (between République and Bastille). According to an article published by Paris Luttes Info, there was a similar police presence on the night of the last presidential election. When the crowd began heading towards the 11th district of Paris, police forces succeeded in cutting the march in half. While the first group remained blocked in Ménilmontant, the second group hastened through the streets of Paris to express their rage and love.

Meanwhile, the mobilization against the “Loi travail XXL” continues. The last demonstration took place on October 10, 2017, drawing between 210,000 and 400,000 people everywhere in France. (In France, like everywhere else, authorities and organizations are always at odds as to the number of people taking the streets). After the afternoon demonstration in Paris, several hundred people decided to occupy the Institute of Geography at the Sorbonne University. Police units swiftly blocked the entrance so no one could enter the building. While the occupation was in effect, the occupiers published the following communiqué:

We, occupiers of the Institute of Geography, occupy this site for several reasons. First, we refuse all neoliberal and security policies, whether from Macron or not. We occupy in the same state of mind as the ones who filled the movement of spring 2016 with life. We also occupy in solidarity with the defendants of the Quai Valmy case. We ask for the release of all the defendants, knowing that this is the trial against the Loi Travail. Finally, we occupy to protest against the filthy feast of the managers of the biggest companies in France, who are coming to celebrate the victory of “France as a Business” on October 12 at the “pré Catelan” in the Bois de Boulogne. To their wealthy banquet, we oppose our feast and invite anyone who relates to this occupation to come and support it. Particularly, we are calling academics and intellectuals to take position in favor of the occupation, so the threat of eviction that it faces will be harder to carry out.

Against the capitalist occupation of the world, let’s occupy universities!

You can read the communiqué in its original version here.

The heavy verdicts in the arson trials remind us once more that police and the justice system are simply two arms with which the state dominates the population. Whatever type of political system you live under, from dictatorship to social democracy, police and the justice system will always fulfill the same purpose: enforcing the power and authority of the state while imposing a supposedly “natural” social order on society via intimidation, harassment, and violence.

In these strange times, when blatant new waves of nationalist and fascist ideology are spreading alongside virulent economic and neo-liberal reforms, when a permanent state of emergency supports a steady stream of new authoritarian policies, it seems undeniable that more obstacles, hardships, political repression, and uncertainties are to come.

However, let’s not surrender, never! There’s too much at stake.

This is why our love, solidarity, and thoughts are with those behind bars or in courtrooms facing charges, as well as with everyone still out there in the streets, on the run, or hiding somewhere in the shadows, who continue fighting with all their hearts against authority, capitalism, and the state without any rest or truce.

Our insatiable thirst for freedom will always be stronger than any of their laws, bars, or walls, stronger than the concrete and steel they continuously surround us with. Let our love and rage speak through an unstoppable and uncontrollable incendiary storm!

From the J20 in the US to the G20 in Hamburg, from the streets of Paris to the Greek prison cells—

Fire to the prisons! Fire to their justice! Fire to the state! Fire to their world!

  1. In November 2016, while running for president, Macron published a book entitled Révolution, in which he tried to embody a new political posture, supposedly more pragmatic, and claimed to supersede the traditional opposition between Left and Right. 
Categories: News

DAPL Saboteurs PNW Speaking Tour: How and Why Two Women Fought to Stop DAPL

Tue, 10/17/2017 - 20:35

The post DAPL Saboteurs PNW Speaking Tour: How and Why Two Women Fought to Stop DAPL appeared first on It's Going Down.

In the fall of 2016, while the epic battle over Indigenous Rights and fossil fuel infrastructure was being waged in Standing Rock, ND against the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL), Catholic Workers Ruby Montoya and Jessica Reznicek sabotaged DAPL infrastructure over and over during its construction near their home in Iowa, successfully delaying the destructive oil project for many weeks.

Recently, they revealed what they had done to the world, despite never being caught in the act. Now they’re traveling the West Coast, speaking publicly about their actions, why they decided to do what they did, and why they’ve publicly taken responsibility for it.

Come join Ruby and Jessica to learn about and discuss their decisions and action to do everything they could to stop the Dakota Access Pipeline.

These events are for everyone. Whether you agree with Jessica and Ruby’s actions completely or not. Everyone who comes with respect and is genuinely interested in a productive dialogue is welcome.

The Global Climate Crisis is forcing people who never imagined or wanted to do anything like Jessica’s and Ruby’s actions to question and re-evaluate what they’re willing to do to confront it. And ask ourselves whether we are willing to support actions like these after they occur – even though some of us would never want to or be able to engage in actions like these ourselves.

With forests on fire, seas rising, super storms ripping apart the coastlines and so many of the most vulnerable people and wild things being hurt by climate change we must rely on each other to stop this destruction.

Our hope lies in the fact that we are capable of so much more than we can even imagine. Jessica and Ruby are just one example of this.

We invite you to an evening where we can all be among people who care as much as we do and share from our hearts.

All events will be collecting donations for Jessica and Ruby.

Jessica and Ruby need your support to spread the word!

Please SHARE, invite friends to this and other events, & click Interested wherever you are ♥

Ruby and Jess think they will soon be indicted and jailed to await trial, so these events are necessarily being organized on short notice. We need every single person to help get the word out. If you are part of an organization, please consider emailing your list. Please share on Facebook and twitter. Thanks very much ♥

TOUR DATES:

Tour event page here, best place for updates.

October 18th – Phoenix, OR
Phoenix Branch Library
510 W 1st St, Phoenix, OR 97535
6:30 – 9:30 pm
RSVP: https://www.facebook.com/events/648248178632959/

October 20th – Portland, OR
First Congregational Church
1126 SW Park Ave, Portland, OR 97205
7:00 – 9:00 pm

Olympia, WA
Date and Location TBD

October 25th – Seattle, WA
Pipsqueak Gallery
173 16th Ave, Seattle, WA 98122
6:30 – 8:30 PM

Categories: News

You Go No Further, Canada

Tue, 10/17/2017 - 20:19

The post You Go No Further, Canada appeared first on It's Going Down.

Anonymous submission to MTL Counter-info

October 11th, 1869: A hundred and forty-eight years ago to this date, Louis Riel led a group of Métis to confront land surveyors sent by the newly confederated Canadian state. The surveyors came to define new property lines as a first step in Canada’s control over the Red River territory. This group of Métis physically stopped their work while Riel informed them, “you go no further.” So began the Red River rebellion, an inspiring moment in the long, ongoing history of Indigenous initiatives to fight against and survive the spread of colonialism and its genocidal violence across the continent.

We are non-Indigenous anarchists who chose to commemorate this important day in the history of anti-colonial resistance by vandalizing the John A. MacDonald monument in Place du Canada, Montreal. We spray painted Ⓐ FUCK 150 DÉCOLONISONS

The year 2017 marks canada’s attempts to celebrate the past 150 years of its existence. These efforts include the state trying to position Indigenous peoples within this distorted narrative of nation-building founded upon stolen land, attempted genocide and assimilation. In the face of this ongoing colonial nightmare we see only one way forward: decolonization and the end of canada.

Long live the Indigenous peoples of Turtle Island!
Ni frontière, ni état, ni québec, ni canada!
None are free until we all are free!

Categories: News

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