February 11, 2010
“If you’ve done nothing wrong… you have nothing to fear.”
This year a UK Home Office backed coalition of regional Police Authorities will embark on a project to extend their national surveillance network by deploying unmanned airborne surveillance drones across the country. It’s planned that in the build up to 2012 the drones will be used to foil potential terrorist attacks, detect illegal immigration planning to cross the channel (by flying over France?), monitor anti-social behaviour and public order situations (demonstrations) and of course to gather intelligence on subversive activities.
The introduction of these drones represents a significant expansion of the surveillance state, planned and delivered by un-democratic consortium of police authorities and loosely regulated by vague and rarely tested laws. With this expansion of the surveillance state should come an equal counter-response probing the legal and practical boundaries of surveillance:
What methods can be used to disrupt or destroy drone technology?
November 2, 2009
The Chronicles of Farquhar McHarg – Pistoleros!: 1: 1:1918 (Paperback)
by Farquhar McHarg (Author), Christie Stuart (Editor), Helios Gomez (Illustrator), Paul Sharkey (Translator)
Pistoleros! Is the story of twentieth century anarchism as witnessed by McHarg, a Glaswegian anarchist sailor who became embroiled in Spanish revolutionary politics at the end of the First World War. Curiously echoing the editor Christie’s (author of ‘Granny Made Me an Anarchist’ and ‘Floodgates of Anarchy’) own life fifty years later, the youthful and naïve McHarg jumps ship in Barcelona and enlists with the CNT (the anarchist national workers union) in their struggle against the bosses proto-fascist murder squads and para-military catholic groups (which provided training for the likes of Franco in murder and suppression techniques).
Pistoleros! is written in the style of a genre thriller with all of the accompanying intrigues; double dealing spy networks, evil foreign agents, love and betrayal all framed within the romantic backdrop of post WW1 Barcelona – and in this way it’s is a gripping read, yet these characters and events are real, the colourful backdrop the grim reality of poverty versus the opulence and wealth of the Barcelona bourgeoisie.
Anarchists are often caricatured as firebrands and disorganised individualists and universally accused of being better at ‘analysing the problem’ rather than providing practical solutions. Pistoleros! shows that the history of Anarchism has been that of pragmatism; Anarchists were always on the frontline of providing real-world solutions through organised labour in effective opposition to the exploitation and corruption of the ruling classes – when the traditional left were constantly mired in internal power politics and global machinations.
December 12, 2008
‘Anarchist’ riots continue for the fifth day in Greece triggered by the police murder of teenage boy and popular disgust at the self serving and corruption ridden right-wing government. Here in London our own home-grown police murder goes almost unnoticed and without a stone being thrown. The verdict from the Jean Charles De Menezes killing inquest is expected today, yet in an outrageously blatant attempt at controlling the outcome – echoing the history of Police lies and attempts at cover-up throughout the proceedings- the Coroner (Sir Michael Wright) instructed the jury to only deliver an ‘open’ or ‘lawful killing’ verdict.
November 21, 2008
This translation is an excerpt from a radical new book that has just appeared in France by the Invisible Committee (Comité invisible). The book discusses the local appropriation of power by the people, the physical blocking of the economy, and the elimination of the police force as practical routes toward insurrection.