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Following the success of the revolution, the Islamists instituted a theocratic dictatorship and wiped out the workers’ movement and the left. Religious fundamentalism, whether Christian, Muslim, Hindu or other deserves to be closely examined because it has increasingly become a player on the world stage in recent years. On the one hand, many media commentators and pro-war agitators were not slow to characterize the wars in the former Yugoslavia, Sudan, Chechnya, Palestine/Israel and Afghanistan as “crusades” against the Muslim populations or “jihads” against Christian or Jewish people. On the other hand, many religious working class people who have borne the brunt of these wars — especially when driven b... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
The ABC (SA)‘s Anti-Repression Network, the Anti-War Coalition and the Freedom of Expression Institute were among more than 100 signatories of a protest petition that was sent to Mexico’s ambassador to South Africa, M de Maria y Campos, protesting the murders by death-squads of 27 members of the Indigenous Popular Council of Oaxaca — Ricardo Flores Magon (CIPO-RFM), numerous attacks on CIPO-RFM autonomous municipalities and the shutting down of their community radio station. The CIPO-RF embraces well over 1,000 members in 24 autonomous villages in Oaxaca state, southern Mexico. It is named after Oaxacan anarchist revolutionary Ricardo Flores Magon who was murdered in the American prison of Fort Leavenworth in 1922, a mart... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
Introduction We have seen several curious reversals of the usual pecking order in world affairs regarding Africa’s status of late, not least of which have been the spectacle of Portugal begging for aid from its former colony Angola, and of European citizens relocating back to their former colonies, fleeing economic crisis in Europe for poorly-paid jobs in the African hinterland [1]. But there is a longer-lived and more secret relationship between Africa and Europe that overturns the conventional view of African presidents being corrupted by European aid-with-strings-attached; this is the phenomenon of la valise, “the suitcase” system of millions of francs sent over decades by African dictators to corrupt the European p... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
Regional Tribalism or Revolutionary Transformation? Zabalaza Introduction to Anarchism & Revolution in Black Africa Stephen P. Halbrook wrote this article, which forms part of our African Resistance History Series, in 1971 at a time when he was completing his PhD in philosophy at the Florida State University (attained in 1972). It appears that Halbrook went on to become a leading legal figure in defense of the American constitutional right of its citizens to bear arms, basing his arguments on Switzerland’s “armed neutrality” stance during the Second World War. He has written extensively on the issue, but it is not easy to determine at a glance whether his defense comes from a Right- or Left-wing perspective as both... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
Thank you so much, especially to UCL [Union Comuniste Libertaire], Common Cause, AK Press and everyone else who has made it possible for me to come out. I think it’s very important for militants who live in different parts of the world to compare ideas and practice. Hopefully that’s what we’re all about – putting ideas into practice, and being very pragmatic about the way we exercise our politics. I come from a very strange country, and it’s nice to see one of my countrymen here. One of my comrades from South Africa has just moved to Montréal, temporarily, but nevertheless. And hopefully you’ll make him feel at home as you have made me feel at home. It’s been really fantastic over the last c... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
Preface In the early 20th Century, anarchism entrenched itself as a mass organizational movement in Czechoslovakia, Hungary and Poland — anarchists having already been active in the 1873 uprisings in Bosnia and Herzegovina against Austro-Hungarian control. But it was primarily in Bulgaria and its neighbor Macedonia that a remarkable case of anarchist organizing arose, in the midst of the power-play between the great powers. This poorly-studied movement not only blooded itself in national liberation struggles and armed opposition to both fascism and Stalinism, but developed a notably diverse and resilient mass movement, the first to adopt the controversial 1926 Platform of the Ukrainian Makhnovist exiles in Paris[2] as its lodestone... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
The history of the broad anarchist tradition in North Africa has yet to be written, and must therefore be pieced together from a wide variety of sources. Modern, developed Egypt was – and still is – largely confined by its desert wastes to a narrow fertile funnel embracing the capital of Cairo on the Nile River and the Nile delta port cities of Alexandria and Port Said. Originally part of the Ottoman Empire, it became an autonomous Ottoman province under the dynasty of Mohammed Ali from 1805, but the opening of the Suez Canal in 1869 proved too much of a temptation for imperialist Britain, which occupied the country in 1882. In “Egypt and Tunis,” Max Nettlau argues, “Italian Anarchist émigrés and ... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
Mikhail Bakunin “reappeared as a boogeyman after September 11” because the 1920 bombing of Wall Street by the Galleanist anarchist Mario Buda which left thirty dead, 200 injured, demolished the magnate J.P. Morgan’s office, and caused $2-million in property damage was the worst prior terror attack in New York, “but his casting as the grandfather of terrorism was an exercise of mystification rather than explanation.” Bakunin’s towering intellect has always been reduced to caricature of his supposedly chaotic nature, despite the fact that the 1872 split in the First International left the Marxists with perhaps a total of 1,000 adherents across the world, while the anarchist faction (usually misrepresented ... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
This uncompromisingly defiant call, “It is better to die on your feet than to live on your knees,” has been attributed to everyone from Ché Guevara and Dolores Ibarruri – La Pasionara of Spanish Revolution fame – although it was well known to have been adopted as a war-cry among Emiliano Zapata’s forces to rival “Tierre y Libertad” during the Mexican Revolution. But the famous phrase appears to have originated instead with a Mexican journalist, Práxedis Guerrero, who, leading a fire-fight between 32 well-armed guerrillas of the anarchist Partido Liberal Mexicano and about 600 Federales in the Chihuahua town of Janos on the evening of 29 December 1910, literally died on his feet &ndash... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
The Darfur War has been described as the worst conflict in the world today — and yet despite intensive media coverage, many aspects of the conflict are misunderstood because of the propaganda battle that runs in tandem with the war on the ground. The view from the ground offers different perspectives. Much has been written on the crisis in Darfur, the three arid westernmost provinces of Sudan, so I will not repeat it here. Suffice to say that the USA alleges genocide against the Fur, Masaalit and Zaghawa tribes by Khartoum-backed Janjaweed militia – an interest spurred no doubt by Washington’s desire for access to Sudan’s oil reserves which are currently being exploited exclusively by China and to a lesser extent, ... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
Introduction The revolutionary vision of anarchism gained a foothold in the imagination of the popular classes with the rise of the anarchist strategy of revolutionary syndicalism in the trade unions affiliated to the First International.[1] It has since provided the most devastating and comprehensive critique of capitalism, landlordism, the state, and power relations in general, whether based on gender, race, or other forms of oppression. In their place it has offered a practical set of tools with which the oppressed can challenge the tiny, heavily armed elites that exploit them. Anarchism and syndicalism have been the most implacable enemies of the ruling-class industrialists and landed gentry in state and capitalist modernization proj... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
Seeing the police move on a single column of smoke rising from two burning tires over rebellious Khutsong, south-west of Johannesburg, on March 1, local government election day, I was reminded of the Native American warrior in Dances With Wolves remarking of the distant fire of a frontiersman that he would not tolerate “a single line of smoke in my own country”. The ANC-led government in similar fashion had determined that Khutsong would not explode on voting day; that the mockery of the vote that occurred would be “free”, albeit an enforced peace in a township that had driven ANC leaders out, revolting against an administrative transfer out of Gauteng province to an uncertain future in the poverty-stricken North-We... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
The murder, apparently at the hands of two black farm-laborers, of thuggish AWB leader Eugene Terre’Blanche on March 20 in what was once South Africa’s white supremacist Western Transvaal heartland, was celebrated by anti-racists the world over. Inside South Africa, it had the expected result of dire, unfounded panic over a looming race war, and the unexpected result of the rush by mainstream parties to defend the ultra-right’s “right to exist in a democracy”. We hear a lot about race and continuing racism in post-apartheid South Africa, but who are the Boers, what function did the AWB serve the nationalist elites, and what does the debate over the killing reveal – or obscure – about the country&r... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
[NB: I’m an anarchist communist journalist and wrote this piece specifically for anarkismo.net. I entered Lebanon via Syria, from the north during the second half of the war, on the last access road not yet bombed by the Israelis (yet a plantation I traveled through was flattened an hour after I passed). I traveled mainly in Beirut and in its bombed southern suburbs, and in Sidon in the south as far sout-east as the target of Ghazieh, leaving on the first military transport flight out after the ceasefire came into effect. The experienced of war narrows one’s focus very sharply: in other words, being on the ground gives one a unique insight into local conditions, but deprives one of a wider perspective. For example, coming within... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
Although commended by no less a luminary than Sir Ian Kershaw on the dust-jacket, Richard J. Evans’ name is not one that stands in the first ranks of historians of Nazism and the ultimately (self)destructive spiral of accelerating radicalism that led to the Holocaust. To be fair, it is tough to distinguish oneself in this field because the rise of such an implacable evil in the heart of what in many respects was the most “civilized” of Western countries poses the greatest riddle of the 20th Century – and has thus been exhaustively treated by more works than any other single historical topic. In this volume – the first of a promised trilogy, ending with the defeat in 1945 – Evans attempts to define the co... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
THE SOCIAL QUESTION The most crucial issue facing the global anarchist movement today is not only how to win the battle for the leadership of ideas among the anti-capitalist movement, but how to ensure that direct action, mutual aid, collective decision-making, horizontal networks, and other principles of anarchist organizing become the living practices of the social movements. We will examine the examples of Latin American anarchist organizations to see how they ensured what they call “social insertion” — that they as militants and revolutionaries are at the heart of the social struggles and not mere (cheer-)leaders in the margins. This is a core question not only because it demands a definition of the role of the rev... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
INTRODUCTION Anarchist communism has evolved over the past 140 years as a fighting working class tradition of revolutionary warfare against all forms of exploitation. Its aim is the creation of the freest and most equal society possible, balancing individual and collective interests in as fair a way as possible. But our detractors, both of the left and the right question whether anarchism is strong enough to work in practice. The examples of the Mexican, Ukrainian, Manchurian, Spanish, Cuban and Iranian revolutions show that anarchist communism — true grassroots workers’ control and full social, political and economic equality — is practical, sustainable and defensible, so long as its core principles of direct democrac... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
To an English-speaking outsider, the French anarchist movement — as distinct from the Francophone anarchist movement in North Africa, Vietnam, etc — is often viewed as the “mother” movement because of the massive CGT union federation which, under anarchist sway, amalgamated with the local Bourses du Travail in 1895, establishing an “apolitical” model of mass anarchosyndicalism that was replicated in Fracophile countries such as Poland and most of Europe and lands as far away as Brazil, Egypt and Senegal. The French movement proved to be one of the largest, most influential and most durable of all anarchist movements; and apart from its suppression for four years during the Vichy era, it has operated unin... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
The new movement is most readily compared to that of the late 1960s and early 1970s, starting in particular with the French Revolt of 1968 which saw 10-million workers go out on strike, several cities being run by worker-student-resident committees and the near-collapse of the De Gaulle regime. The revolt echoed around the world, with risings as far away as Tokyo and Mexico City and the famous “Prague Spring Revolt” in Czechoslovakia. But although we are seeing mass mobilizations of anti-capitalists in first world cities – the very center of gravity of the corporate world where history was supposed to have ended with the fall of the USSR – the current movement is qualitatively different to that of 30 years ago. The ... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
Pieter Willem Botha lies as cold and dead on the mortuary slab as Stephen Bantu Biko did in the back of a police van almost 30 years ago. The Groot Krokodil, whose vice-like bite struck fear into so many hearts, evaporated into the night on Halloween like a wraith of mist on the Outeniqua Pass. The nation is now at loggerheads over how his legacy should be assessed. The comparison with Biko is partly unfair because PW Botha only ascended the pinnacle of racist rule in 1978, a year after the Black Consciousness leader had been murdered. And yet, while Botha merely inherited apartheid’s polarized world view, he alone transformed it into a death-star, giving it a baptism of fire that arguably even Nazi-sympathizing nationalist Daniel... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
I’m a historian of the global anarchist movement (Black Flame — 2009; Cartography of Revolutionary Anarchism — 2013), but during what I term the First Wave (1868–1894), the Italian anarchist movement was always a bit vague to me. The reason was that most historians make a point of stressing that the Italians made their mark not in Italy, but as traveling militants, especially in Egypt, Tunisia, Argentina, Uruguay, Brazil and the United States. But the conundrum was: if Italian anarchists were so influential in the revolutionary labor movement abroad, how was it possible that they had little traction where they came from? Now Pernicone as helped explain why: Firstly, the dominance in Italy from the time of the Italia... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
The Arab Spring redrew the battle-lines between over the control of information between the statist/capitalist elites and the popular classes – raising questions of increased restriction and surveillance, and of the limits of cyber-activism. In some ways this battle is often mischaracterized as being a narrow debate between cool intellectual property technocrats and wild-eyed free-use pirates, or as being a political dispute between authoritarian regimes and free speech activists, with no wider relevance to society. But it is clear that what is at stake is the global ideology (and exploitative practice) of corporatist enclosure versus that of the creative commons; in other words, it is more even than a universalist human rights concer... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
Revolutionaries in Anglophone Africa have always seen Britain and France as the dominant imperialist powers on the continent, but other forces are emerging from the shadows to challenge their continued post-colonial dominance — and it’s not just the United States. Southern African anarchist-communists would normally see the former British colony of South Africa as acting as a sub-imperialist power on behalf of the big capitalist powers and its own capitalist ruling class in the region, a sort of regional policeman as it were: if British interests in Swaziland are threatened by the democracy movement, we are sure that South African military might will intervene (as it did against Lesotho in 1998) to shore up the Swazi elite. Bu... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
A political dissident from Swaziland has claimed that guerrillas armed with pistols and AK-47s, and with the backing of militants in the ANC-led tripartite alliance, have been holding training camps in several South African towns for a secret liberation army dedicated to the overthrow of Swaziland’s absolute monarchy. But, the leader of the outlawed People’s United Democratic Movement (Pudemo), Mario Masuku, has denied his organization is armed or that it plans to use South Africa as a springboard for launching a guerrilla war against the Swazi government. His claims have been echoed by Godfrey Sibiya, the Young Communist League (YCL) leader who was allegedly in charge of ideological training. The guerrilla force — name... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
Much printers’ ink has been shed by pundits and politicians in attempting to explain, excuse, laud or condemn the rise of Jacob Zuma to the ANC Presidency from where it is just a short hop, skip and jump to the South African Presidency following the 2009 General Election. The rest of us, the people, are reduced to either disgruntled witnesses or ecstatic cheerleaders of “JZ” shifting the weight of his gut from foot to foot in his monotonous mshini-wam song. He knows it doesn’t have to be a particularly energetic dance, for it is pretty much guaranteed that the ill-gotten gains he allegedly sought so assiduously for so long will soon be his when he holds the keys to the Treasury. Just how did arguably the world&rsquo... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
This study of recent anti-imperialist resistance in Kurdistan, looking back to the anarchist resistance in the Ottoman heartland in the period before the formation of the Turkish state, consists of extracts — kindly proof-read in part by Will Firth — from the forthcoming book by Schmidt & van der Walt, Global Fire: 150 Fighting Years of International Anarchism & Syndicalism, Counter-power Vol.2, AK Press, USA, scheduled for release in about 2011. Introduction: Second-Generation Anarchism in Anatolia: The Kurdish National Question Anarchism in Turkey [1] — once a significant radical force that contested Ottoman imperialism over its Bulgarian, Macedonian, Greek, Arab, African and Jewish subject peoples — be... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
One of the lesser-known heroes of the Ukrainian Revolution 1917–1921 was Shalom (Samuel) Schwartzbard, whose name is alternately given as Sholem Shvartsbard. Hailing from Bessarabia (Moravia) where he was born in 1886, Schwartzbard worked periodically as a watchmaker. He became a revolutionary during the Russian Revolt of 1905 that affected all Russian-occupied territories like Bessarabia — and Poland, where the political prisoner-support organization the Anarchist Red Cross (later renamed the Anarchist Black Cross, ABC) was founded in that year. He fled Bessarabia in 1906 following the collapse of the revolt and moved to France in 1910, joined the French Foreign Legion in 1914 on the outbreak of the First World War, was wounde... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
A frail multimillionaire dies peacefully in bed at the grand old age of 95, surrounded by a coterie of those who love him and those with an eye on the inheritance, an event that would in the normal course of events be seen as natural—but the man concerned has been treated internationally as more of a supernatural entity than an ordinary man. The unsurpassed hagiography around Nelson Mandela, who died in the über-wealthy enclave of Houghton in Johannesburg last Thursday night, the famous prisoner turned global icon on a par with Mohandas Gandhi is upheld by most observers of South Africa as a necessary myth of national unity, and not least of the triumph of racial reconciliation of over the evils of segregation. I had the privile... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
The 1994 formation of the Revolutionary Confederation of Anarcho-Syndicalists — “Nestor Makhno” (RKAS) Despite intense KGB repression, the anarchist movement in the USSR and its colonies and satellite states began reviving underground in the 1970s, gathered momentum as protests escalated in the late 1980s, and when the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991 and lost its former colonies including the Ukraine, that collapse precipitated a flowering of anarchist organizing. However, the promise of glasnost for a freer society has been tarnished by what seems to be an inexorable rightward drift of the Russian state and society driven by the old KGB elite in cahoots with robber-baron oligarchs and reactionary politicians. This has b... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
In pursuit of its “long war” on terrorism and alleged terrorism, the US military is expanding into Africa’s “arc of instability” — and striking secret pacts with regional powers like South Africa. Those programs include the “Next Generation of African Military Leaders” officers’ course run by the shadowy African Center for Strategic Studies, based in Washington, which has “chapters” in various African countries including South Africa. The Center appears to be a sort of “School of the Africas” similar to the infamous “School of the Americas” AMERICA MUSCLES INTO “FRENCH TERRITORY” Former colonial power France maintained the largest fore... (From: TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)

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