As most people will be aware, February is Serbia month in Great Britain. The British-Serbian chamber of commerce contributed by hosting an evening reception with guest speaker Dejan Popovic, the Serbian ambassador. With Serbian Anarcho-Syndicalists, the Belgrade 6, back on trial for “international terrorism”, South London and Brighton Solfed members felt it appropriate to attend.
A new website has been set up by an informal solidarity group formed of families, partners, friends and comrades in order to provide financial support for imprisoned anti-fascists. After being arrested, having property confiscated, losing jobs and being left on bail for two years, a group of anti fascists have been sent to prison and they need our support.
Resisting fascism is important, and people that are persecuted by the state for resisting fascism should not be forgotten or ignored.
In days gone by it was a popular cry for mediums when attempting to conjure the spirits of the deceased to ask: ‘is there anybody there?’ (for older readers think Margaret Rutherford in Blythe Spirit). The same phrase seems to have found its way into the lexicon of the state in recent weeks as it attempts to mop up the strays and slackers who have failed to return their census forms. An army of civil servants have been annoying people around the UK who have forgotten to fill in their forms.
This morning we got together with local benefits campaigners to picket ATOS Healthcare, the private company paid millions by the government to force people off sickness benefits by reclassifying them as 'fit for work'. They do this by using an automated system to over-ride the judgement human doctors, as part of the wider attacks on claimants and workers, which began under Labour and are currently being accellerated by the coalition government. Below is the text of the leaflet we distributed to passers-by, many of whom stopped to share experiences of friends and loved ones who've had their benefits cut arbitrarily.
ATOS Healthcare: Poverty pimps putting profit before the welfare of people with disabilities
This short article was written by a member of the Thames Valley Solidarity Federation for inclusion in the upcoming fourth issue of 'The Ox-Fly', Oxford's radical newsletter, asking whether government is really the common foundation of our day-to-day lives...
‘Anarchy’ is a word that has a very bad reputation these days. The mere mention of it causes most people to imagine nothing but rows of burning cars, roaming gangs of looters and senseless violence in the streets. Anarchy, we are told, means nothing but the very breakdown of social order itself. Yet is it the truth? Is government really the vital foundation of our society?
This year marks the 75th anniversary of Hitler’s accession to power, it is appropriate therefore to look again at fascism, and to remind ourselves of those salient features of fascist movements and regimes which have become obscured with the passage of time. There is more to fascism than the legacy of war and genocide. That was where fascism ended, but during its rise, and where it took power in the years before the Second World War, many observers, particularly those on the left, noted its anti-working class bias and the nature of the economic system over which it presided.
Six anarchists from the ASI, Solidarity Federation’s Serbian sister organisation are currently imprisoned by the Serbian state. Tadej Kurep, Ivan Vulovic, Sanja Dojkic, Ratibor Trivunac, Ivan Savic and Nikola Mitrovic are accused of attacking the Greek embassy in Belgrade remain imprisoned, with (at time of press) no charges yet levelled at them.
The six have been targeted by authorities because of their politics and visibility, and face the ludicrous prospect of international terrorism charges - on the basis that as the embassy is sovereign territory, the attack had crossed an international border. The attack itself caused negligible damage, and has even been claimed by another group. If international terrorism charges are brought, the Six face over 10 years in prison.