This movement has many of the elements we recognize as fascism. Fascism is a far-right political approach that offers what the historian Robert Paxton calls “compensatory cults of unity, energy, and purity” to people obsessed with perceived humiliation and social decline. Historically, fascist movements have taken the form of militant nationalist parties that turn against democracy in alliance with elements of the conservative elite. They engage in “redemptive violence” to pursue “goals of internal cleansing and external expansion.” Although it may seem to have come out of nowhere, today’s American fascism has roots in a surge of far-right violence in the late 20th century. We have much to learn from the recent evolution of fascism — and from anti-fascist responses — to help understand far right violence today.
As time moves on and the seasons change, we approach once again the June 11 International Day of Solidarity with Marius Mason and All Long-Term Anarchist Prisoners. Another year has passed, and many of our dear comrades remain captives of the state, subject to its daily subjugation, isolation, and brutality. June 11 is a time to stop the ever-quickening rush of our lives and remember. Remember our imprisoned comrades. Remember our own histories of revolt. Remember the flame – sometimes flickering, sometimes blazing – of anarchism. With June 11, we desire to deepen a critique of prison that challenges the distinction between prisoner and supporter. For us, these differences are conditional: we, as anarchists, see ourselves as potential prisoners. Some of us have been, some of us will be.
When I saw that Jaccques Lesage de La Haye had a new book called The Abolition of Prison, published by the French radical press, Éditions Libertalia, I reached out through my anarchist radio networks to find contact information for him. Jacques is a longtime anarchist and abolitionist in France, who for many years hosted the anti-prison radio show Ras les murs. His book promised to be a culmination of all of his experience writing and struggling against prisons and working to support people both inside and outside. As a translator and an anarchist, I am always keeping an eye out for new texts to try to bring into English in order to connect movements around the world and especially to help connect the abolitionist struggles across national divides.
Despite the advances in technology, radical communications has not kept pace. Sure, many anarchics are aware of other struggles through communiques, news reports, or social media posts, but there is a deep rift between these casual interactions and meaningful relation building needed for resilient, effective, and meaningful struggle.
Lorenzo Kom’boa Ervin is probably best known for Anarchism and the Black Revolution, a fifty-six page manifesto that was arguably the first work to systematically apply the principles and theories of anarchism to the history of Black struggle and the question of Black liberation. First published in 1979, Anarchism and the Black Revolution was written while the Chattanooga-born Irvin was incarcerated in the United States Penitentiary at Marion, Illinois serving a life sentence for hijacking . Ervin was first introduced to anarchism during an interim stint in the Federal Detention Center in...
The Zapatistas have said the best solidarity anyone can offer is to start their own social centers, projects, movements, and revolutions wherever they are based. In Belo Horizonte, the capital city of the state of Minas Gerais in southeastern Brazil, a collective called Kasa Invisível (Portuguese for “Invisible House”) has heeded that proposal, and hopes to inspire you to do the same. The three formerly abandoned houses now occupied by this autonomous, anti-capitalist collective serve as a home for people in need, a social and cultural center for the community, and a meeting and organizing space for anti-authoritarian resistance and mutual aid.
Anarchists frighten privileged elites and their authoritarian followers not simply because the primary goals of the movement have been to abolish the sources of elite power – the state, patriarchy, and capitalism – but because anarchism offers a viable alternative form of social and political organization grounded in workplace collectives, neighborhood assemblies, bottom-up federations, child-centered free schools, and a variety of cultural organizations operating on the basis of cooperation, solidarity, mutual aid, and direct, participatory democracy.
On Sept. 21, 2020, millions of people in three major U.S. cities awoke to find themselves living in what President Donald Trump and his Justice Department cronies had declared "anarchist jurisdictions." New York City, Portland, Oregon, and Seattle — all of which are led by Democrats — were slapped with the label and, as a result, are now at risk of being defunded by the federal government, even as they grapple with massive budget shortfalls tied to the coronavirus pandemic. The president is playing a political game with those whom he considers to be his enemies, and that list is growing day by day.
Portland has now become a proving ground for the Trump administration to demonstrate its ‘law and order’ bona fides in the run-up to the 2020 election. Federal police, with little information available as to which agencies they specifically work for, have become more active in the repression of demonstrations in the city. A number of recent videos have captured this secret police force, members of which wear military fatigues, grabbing demonstrators off the street and shuttling them away in unmarked vehicles. We caught up with a member of our Portland local to find out more about what’s been happening on the ground.
What is unthinkable, or was at the beginning of the month, is the power of the Black Lives Matter movement in the streets. The emergence of the autonomous zone is a pinnacle of that power, a significant victory. It demonstrates the ability of popular power to win the impossible from structures of white supremacy – the state and the propertied interests they represent. That victory, and the subsequent diminution of state violence, is a major step forward for community self-control and autonomy. It shows that ending anti-Black violence is the first and most basic step to honoring Black life. But it is just the beginning. Honoring Black life means constructing a society where Black autonomy and Black power are the cornerstones of community and one where Black freedom is the foundation for broader, collective liberation. The advent of the movement’s autonomous zone was a step in that direction. Taking the city’s east police precinct demonstrates not only that our movements can win, but we can win previously unimaginable victories for Black lives.
On Sunday, February 23, hundreds of women marched in the northern Mexican city of Hermosillo, the capital of Sonora, as part of a recent wave of militant women’s protests in Mexico against the growing rate of femicides and violence against women in the country. The march began in front of the museum at the University of Sonora. From there, the group headed toward downtown, where they painted the streets and shouted against gender violence and patriarchy.
By Paul Elias and Jocelyn Gecker for Associated Press - Black-clad anarchists on Sunday stormed into what had been a largely peaceful Berkeley protest against hate and attacked at least five people, including the leader of a politically conservative group who canceled an event a day earlier in San Francisco amid fears of violence. The group of more than 100 hooded protesters, with shields emblazoned with the words "no hate" and waving a flag identifying themselves as anarchists, busted through police lines, avoiding security checks by officers to take away possible weapons. Then the anarchists blended with a crowd of 2,000 largely peaceful protesters who turned up to demonstrate in a "Rally Against Hate" opposed to a much smaller gathering of right-wing protesters. Berkeley police chief Andrew Greenwood defended how police handled the protest, saying they made a strategic decision to let the anarchists enter to avoid more violence. Greenwood said "the potential use of force became very problematic" given the thousands of peaceful protesters in the park. Once anarchists arrived, it was clear there would not be dueling protests between left and right so he ordered his officers out of the park and allowed the anarchists to march in.