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Once I discovered that there were so many of our comrades in prison, I arranged, together with the French syndicalist delegates to make overtures to Dzerzhinsky, the People's Commissar for the Interior, implicitly obedient to Lenin. Being wary of me, my fellow delegates chose Joaquin Maurin to speak on behalf of the CNT delegation. Maurin reported back on their first audience. At the sight of the list of the prisoners whose release was being sought, Dzerzhinsky blanched, then went red with fury, arguing that these men were counterrevolutionaries in cahoots with the White generals: he accused them of having derailed trainloads of Red Army troops and of being responsible for the deaths of thousands of soldiers, in the Ukraine especially. We w... (From : Anarchy Archives.)


It must be left to the future historian to determine whether the Bolshevik repression of the bourgeoisie, with which they started, their rule, was not merely a means towards the ulterior purpose of suppressing all the other non-Bolshevik elements. For the Russian bourgeoisie was not really dangerous to the Revolution. As is well known, it was an insignificant minority, unorganized, without definite solidaric interests and entirely powerless. The revolutionary elements, on the contrary, were a real obstacle to the dictatorship of any political party. The elimination of the revolutionary elements would be of prime necessity to any dictatorship, because such a dictatorship would meet with the strongest opposition NOT from the bourgeoisie but f... (From : Anarchy Archives.)


The growth of Anarchist Communism continue, to lie rapid ill Belgium, and the groups have now started a fortnightly journal lit Brussels which we heartily welcome. It is called Le Drapeau Noir (The Black Flag) and is sold in Belgium at a halfpenny In size it corresponds to our Social-Democratic contemporary Justice. Comrades who read French will find the articles interesting and call have it sent them post paid for six months for Is. 3d. The address of the administration is 58 rue du Moulin, Saint-Josse-ten-Noode, Brussels. 'The Flemish organ Anarchist is to be had at the same office. We are glad to see that our comrades in Belgium as ill France are turning their attention to the spread of our ideas in country places. "Propagandist groups,"... (From : AnarchyArchives.)


A man condemned to lifelong imprisonment had escaped from his confinement and was seeking safety in headlong flight. His pursuers were close at his heels. He was running with all his might, and the distance between him and them was becoming steadily greater. Suddenly he sees before him a stream with precipitous banks, a narrow but deep torrent, . . . . and he cannot swim. But the stream is bridged by a thin plank, half-rotten with age. The fugitive has already one foot upon it. And there, by chance, stand his dearest friend and his bitterest foe. The enemy uttered no sound, and merely folded his arms. The friend, on the contrary, cried out at the top of his voice: "For God's sake, consider, foolhardy man, what you are doing! Do you not see ... (From : AnarchyArchives.)

In our busy life, preoccupied as we are with the numberless petty affairs of everyday existence, we are all too much inclined to pass by, many great evils which affect Society without giving them the attention they really deserve. If sensational "revelations" about some dark side of our life occasionally find their way into the daily Press; if they succeed in shaking our indifference and awaken public attention, we may have in the papers, for a month or two, excellent articles and letters on the subject. Many well-meant things may then be said, the most humane feelings expressed. But the agitation soon subsides; and, after having asked for some new regulations or laws, in addition to the hundreds of thousands of regulations and laws already in force; after having made some microscopic attempts at combating by a few individual efforts a deep-rooted evil which ought to be combated by the combined efforts of Society at large, we soon return to our daily occupations without c...


A succession of meetings have been held during the past month to protest against the infamous sentences of death and imprisonment passed upon the Chicago Anarchists. The largest of these meetings, held at South Place, Oct. 14 was organized by a representative committee of English Socialists-Anarchist an Democratic. A resolution declaring our comrades' condemnation to be an attack upon freedom of speech and public meeting, of vital concern to the working classes all over the world, was enthusiastically and unanimously passed by a crowded audience of English workers. The speakers were the Rev. Stewart Headlam chairman) of the Guild of St. Matthew, William Morris of the Socialist League, J. Blackwell of the Social Democratic Federation, Annie ... (From : AnarchyArchives.)


Chapter 1 "When ignorance reigns in society and disorder in the minds of men, laws are multiplied, legislation is expected to do everything, and each fresh law being a fresh miscalculation, men are continually led to demand form it what can proceed only from themselves, from their own education and their own morality." It is no revolutionist who says this, nor even a reformer. It is the jurist, [Joseph] Dallois, author of the Collection of French law known as “Repertoire de la Legislation.” And yet, though these lines were written by a man who was himself a maker and admirer of law, they perfectly represent the abnormal condition of our society. In existing States a fresh law is looked upon as a remedy for evil. Instead of themsel... (From : Anarchy Archives.)


A LESSON OF TODAY. THE PAGNY AFFAIR. Last month France and Germany were once more on the brink of war, this time pour les beaux yeux of a French police functionary, who was planning intrigues in Alsace on behalf of his own government. Ultimately the French Government, which, by the way, has been continually violating "international law" by fraudulently entrapping on French soil deserters who had taken refuge in Switzerland, by banding over political refugees to the Italian and Spanish Governments, and lastly by trying and sentencing foreign subjects for "crimes" committed on foreign soil, as readers who remember the Anarchist trial at Lyons are well aware--this same French Government succeeded in snatching M. Schnaebele, its agent, from the... (From : AnarchyArchives.)


This letter was first appeared in Benjamin Tucker's journal Liberty in 1882. Bayard was a Democratic Senator from the state of Delaware who believed that enlightened people like himself were the fittest to govern in the US. Spooner rejected this idea. A Letter to Thomas Bayard: Challenging his right - and that of all the other so-called Senators and Representatives in Congress - to exercise any Legislative Power whatever over the People of the United States By Lysander Spooner To Thomas F. Bayard, of Delaware: Sir,— I have read your letter to Rev. Lyman Abbott, in which you express the opinion that it is at least possible for a man to be a legislator, (under the Constitution of the United States), and yet be an honest man. This propos... (From : Anarchy Archives.)


Denver is not unlike a prison. Its inhabitants, too, have been sent there "to do time." That which makes the position of the prisoner preferable, is the consolation that the State will feed him and that some day his time will expire. The majority of Denverites have no such cheerful outlook, Although arriving there with hopes of a speedy return, it's usually imprisonment for life. We all know the paralyzing effect of the daily grind for existence, even for most of us who can boast an average physique. How much more paralyzing must it be for those who go to Denver as a last resort to rescue life from its downward path? Under such conditions and in such an atmosphere people are not interested in abstract ideas. "To hell with Bebel's speech," s... (From : Anarchy Archives.)


Post Office Box 7 Leavenworth, Kansas May 9, 1921 Mr. Harry Weinberger Counselor at Law New York City My Dear Mr. Weinberger: Your letter of the 25th of last April and a copy of Mr. Daugherty's letter to you received. You want me to furnish you with data regarding the sentence which ended on January 19, 1914; but in order for you to judge whether I have been the victim of a conspiracy bent on keeping in bondage the Mexican peon, or not, I am going to furnish you with an abstract of the persecution I have suffered ever since I took refuge in this country. I must, before going any further, beg your pardon for my keeping your attention from other business undoubtedly more important than mine. After years, many years, of an unequal struggle in ... (From : Anarchy Archives.)


Here was one guard, and here was the other at this end. I was here opposite the gate. You know those problems in geometry of the hare and the hounds, they never run straight, but always in a curve, so, see? And the guard was no smarter than the dogs. If he had run straight he would have caught me. It was Peter Kropotkin telling of his escape from the Petro-Paulovsky fortress. Three crumbs on the table marked the relative position of the outwitted guards and the fugitive prisoner; the speaker had broken them from the bread on which he was lunching and dropped them on the table with an amused grin. The suggested triangle had been the starting point of the life long exile of the greatest man, save Tolstoy alone, that Russia has produced: from ... (From : Anarchy Archives.)


Our readers will remember that Comrade Malato, who used to send us news of the movement in France, has been thrown into prison for fifteen months, for a revolutionary article in the "Attaque," one of the organs of the Paris Anarchists. Gegout, the manager of the paper, was also condemned to a like term of imprisonment. Both comrades spoke out boldly for their opinions when asked what they had to say for themselves. We translate below the defense of Malato as given in "La Revolte." Let us call things by their names M. l'Avocat General. This is a prosecution for constructive treason, and nothing else. You yourself foreshadowed this in your speech as public prosecutor. The labor demonstration of the first of May--the legal and peaceful form of... (From : AnarchyArchives.)


(From our Italian Correspondent.) The labor agitation is spreading in town and country. A general laborers' strike is expected in the Varesotto, whither the government have dispatched two companies of soldiers to frighten the peasants into submission. At Bregnano, near Como, the peasants have revolted against the hearth tax (fuocatico) lately increased by the parish authorities: the mayor passed a bad quarter of an hour. The movement has gained the neighboring localities of Lomorro, Belforte, Casa Litta, and others. Here also troops have been hurried to maintain order. But by far the most alarming troubles have broken out at Olgiate in the province of Como, where bands of laborers on strike, 4,000 strong men whose wages were less than 4d. a... (From : AnarchyArchives.)


The Czar's Cat's-paw. The Republican rulers of France have consummated their own disgrace by sentencing to three years' imprisonment seven young men of whom is Russian majesty was afraid. Some of these were studying chemistry and experimenting on the force of explosives, and the Czar has his reasons for objecting to his faithful subjects becoming too learned in that line. The absurd charge of conspiracy fell through at the trial, but the popular dread of "anything that might go off" was cleverly used to make the prisoners appear dangerous. The spy who worked up the affair-the gentleman one of whose many aliases is Landesen -was condemned to five years by default, i.e., after he had had time and means given to him to get out of the way. All ... (From : AnarchyArchives.)


The energetic action of our Norwich comrades in flinging food from the store in the shops to their famishing fellow-workmen, and breaking the windows of the rich burgesses who refused to attend to their grievances, will do more to advance the cause of the Social Revolution than much talking. Before Mowbray's nine months' imprisonment are over Judge Grantham is likely to discover as much. Note the effect of --Norwich riots, Trafalgar Square meetings, BatterPea church parades, and the morning calls of the unemployed upon vestrymen and guardians upon the middle-class conscience. The wretchedness of the workers is no new thing, but when have the news papers swarmed as they do to-day with letters, and accounts of committees, meetings, royal comm... (From : AnarchyArchives.)


Most Irishmen, in and out of Ireland, seem unanimous in condemning the brutality of the British government toward the leaders of the unsuccessful revolt. There is no need to recite here the atrocious measures of repression practiced by England toward her subject races. The arrogant and irresponsible tyranny of the British government in this relation is a matter of history. The point of interest just now is, what did the Irish people, or at least the Sinn Feiners, expect England to do in the given circumstances? I am not interested in the weak-kneed editors of Irish-American papers who bemoan, with all due decorum, Great Britain's "lack of generosity" in dealing with the captured Sinn Feiners, or who hide their cowardice by arguments about t... (From : Spunk.org.)


A PUBLIC MEETING (UNDER THE AUSPICES OF THE FREEDOM GROUP) Will take place at SOUTH PLACE INSTITUTE, ON MONDAY, NOVEMBER 10, In commemoration of the LEGAL MURDER AND IMPRISONMENT Of our COMRADES IN CHICAGO. The following comrades will speak:--LOUISE MICHEL, PETER KROPOTKIN, HENRI MALATESTA, H. DAVIS, TOM PEARSON, JAMES BLACKWELL, J. CASEY, WALTER NEILSON, CHARLEY MORTON, and GENOSSE TRUNK. The Freedom Group have also arranged to hold local meetings as follows:-- Thursday Nov. 6, Scandinavian Club, Rathbone Place, Oxford Street, W. Friday Nov. 7, Gleicheit Club, Old Street, St. Lukes Saturday Nov. 8, International Workingmen's Club, Berners Street, Commercial Road, E. Sunday Nov. 9, Autonomie Club, 6 Windmill Street, Tottenham Court Road. Su... (From : AnarchyArchives.)


PETER KROPOTKIN's first political book, 'Paroles d'un Révolté' -- a collection of articles from 'LeRévolté', the paper he had founded In Geneva in 1879 -- was published in France in 1885, while he was serving a five-year prison sentence. It has been translated into nearly all the main languages of the world but, though most of its nineteen chapters have appeared in English at various times and in various places as articles or pamphlets or both, there has never been a complete translation. The first English language edition of the whole book will be published by the Libertarian Book Club of New York next year, In commemoration of the fiftieth anniversary of Kropotkin's death, under the title 'Words of a Rebel' (co... (From : Anarchy Archives.)


[SECOND NOTICE.] Are Prisons Necessary? is the title of the concluding chapter of Kropotkin's account of his prison experiences. "Unhappily, hitherto," he goes on to remark, "our penal institutions have been nothing but a compromise between the old ideas of revenge, of punishment of the 'bad will' and 'sin,' and the modern ideas of 'deterring from crime,' both softened to a very slight extent by some notions of philanthropy." But is it not time that we fully recognized the fact that crime, like bodily disease, is capable of scientific investigation, and of that scientific treatment which considers prevention the best of cures? An energetic school of scientific students of crime has sprung up of late years in Italy and Germany, who have devo... (From : AnarchyArchives.)


Registration is the first step of conscription. The war shouters and their prostitute press, bet on snaring you into the army, tell you that registration has nothing to do with conscription. They lie. Without registration, conscription is impossible. Conscription is the abdication of your rights as a citizen. Conscription is the cemetery where every vestige of your liberty is to be buried. Registration is its undertaker. No man with red blood in his veins can be forced to fight against his will. But you cannot successfully oppose conscription if you approve of, or submit to, registration. Every beginning is hard. But if the government can induce you to register, it will have little difficulty in putting over conscription. By registering, yo... (From : Anarchy Archives.)


Published Essays and Pamphlets Samuel Gompers by Emma Goldman [Published in The Road to Freedom (New York), Vol. 1, March 1925.] The numerous tributes paid to the late President of the American Federation of Labor, emphasized his great leadership. "Gompers was a leader of men," they said. One would have expected that the disaster brought upon the world by leadership would have proven that to be a leader of men is far from a virtue. Rather is it a vise for which those who are being led are usually made to pay very heavily. The last fifteen years are replete with examples of what the leaders of men have done to the peoples of the world. The Lenins, Clemenceaus, the Lloyd Georges and Wilson, have all posed as great leaders. Yet they have broug... (From : Anarchy Archives.)


GERMANY AND AUSTRIA IN 1887. In no countries more than in these (Russia perhaps excepted) is the history of the revolutionary movement last year such a dreary catalog of persecutions and condemnations. Sentences to penal servitude (Zuchthaus) and imprisonment have been dealt out with a free hand for no other offenses than distribution of prohibited papers, or even electoral manifestos. Workmen's meetings have been abruptly attacked and dispersed often by the police, sometimes even by the military, with the usual results in the form of wholesale arrests and bloodshed. Some officers and soldiers have been suspected of professing Socialist opinions, and arrested at Munich and elsewhere. An exceptional law exceptionally administered hangs over ... (From : AnarchyArchives.)


IRELAND The struggle in Ireland has been victorious in several instances during the past month, Landlords, magistrates and Chief Secretary have yielded to the steady pressure of combination. O'Callaghan, of Bodyke infamy, who a few months back refused his tenants an abatement of twenty percent, has surrendered nearly fifty percent, and has moreover reinstated the thirty-one evicted families. On the Kingston estate (Mitchelstowm) a truce has been proclaimed too. Twenty percent is to be allowed off all rents, evicted tenants are to be reinstated, all law costs to be home by the landlord and half a year's rent to be taken in lieu of arrears. All over the country abatements are being offered, some acceptable, others the reverse. Even Clanricard... (From : AnarchyArchives.)

The present conditions in Russia are so desperate that it is a public duty to lay before this country a statement of these conditions, with a solemn appeal to all lovers of liberty and progress for moral support in the struggle that is now going on for the conquest of political freedom. In the struggle for freedom each country must work out its own salvation; but we should not forget that there exists a web of international solidarity between all civilized countries. It is true that the loans contracted by the heads of despotic states in foreign countries contribute to support despotism. But Russian exiles also know from their own experience how the moral support which the fighters for liberty have never failed to find in the enlightened portions of the civilized nations has been helpful to them, and how much it has aided them to maintain faith in the ultimate victory of freedom and justice. It has been decided, therefore, to issue the present statement,in...


THOMAS DREW vs. JOHN M. CLARK. ARGUMENT FOR PETITIONER. Lysander Spooner The alleged contempt for which the petitioner was condemned consisted in his refusal to be sworn before a committee of the legislature; not in his refusal to answer questions after he had been sworn, but in his refusal to be sworn. His objection to being sworn did not arise from any conscientious scruples as to taking an oath; nor from any fear of criminating himself; nor from any objection whatever to testifying before a committee of the legislature; nor from any objection to testifying in regard to any subject-matter whatever which the legislature has authority to investigate by compulsory testimony. He concedes fully that, if anybody could be compelled to be sworn i... (From : Anarchy Archives.)


'The last service rendered by Albert Parsons to the cause of the people, before he laid down his life on their behalf, was to put i together as well as the cruel circumstances of his imprisonment won -permit an explanation of the principles for which he died. This 1 book, compiled last autumn under the very shadow of the gallows, ties now been published by his devoted comrade and wife, Lucy Parsons, and we heartily commend it to our readers' attention. The first part contains an interesting summary by Parsons himself of the rise of capitalism in the United States. Until the tragedy of ,Chicago riveted our eyes upon the American labor movement, we European Socialists were too much inclined to ignore the extraordinarily ,rapid development of ... (From : AnarchyArchives.)


Alexander Berkman died 61 years ago on June 28th, 1936. We enclose here his editorial for the first issue of The Blast published in San Francisco on 15th January 1916. Why The Blast? Do you mean to destroy? Do you mean to build? These are questions we have been asked from any quarters, by inquirers sympathetic and otherwise. Our reply is frank and bold: We mean both: to destroy and to build. For, socially speaking, Destruction is the beginning of Construction. Superficial minds speak sneeringly of destruction. O, it is easy to destroy -they say- but to build, to build, that’s the important work. Its nonsense. No structure, social or otherwise, can endure if built on a foundation of lies. Before the garden can bloom, the weeds must be u... (From : Kate Sharpley Library.)


We boast of the age of advancement, of science, and progress. Is it not strange, then, that we still believe in fetish worship? True, our fetishes have different form and substance, yet in their power over the human mind they are still as disastrous as were those of old. Our modern fetish is universal suffrage. Those who have not yet achieved that goal fight bloody revolutions to obtain it, and those who have enjoyed its reign bring heavy sacrifice to the altar of this omnipotent deity. Woe to the heretic who dare question that divinity! Woman, even more than man, is a fetish worshiper, and though her idols may change, she is ever on her knees, ever holding up her hands, ever blind to the fact that her god has feet of clay. Thus woman has b... (From : Anarchy Archives.)

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