Anarchists infiltrated by at least four undercover police officers

From The Guardian - Posted by
Rob Evans

Anarchists are of course no strangers to being infiltrated by the state. Their ranks have been penetrated by informers and agent provocateurs for more than a century.

They have been one of the most common targets of the infiltration operation by undercover police officers that has been running since 1968.

We have written about four of the undercover police officers in our book, Undercover. The most recent known undercover officer worked under the fake name of Mark Jacobs, and pretended to be a member of a small group of anarchists in Cardiff from 2005 to 2009.

Two police officers from the Special Demonstration Squad posed as activists in Class War in the late 1980s and early 1990s.

Another spy from the SDS is recorded as "successfully" infiltrating another anarchist group, the Direct Action Movement, between 1990 and 1993, according to an internal Special Branch document.

I am interested to hear of any more information about this infiltration if you wish to get in touch.

A little while ago, I was interviewed by an anarchist radio show. I thought I would post a link here to the interview as it gives an overview of the story of how the police have sent undercover officers into political groups over the last four decades.

Turn On, Tune in and Kick off is the motto of the Circled A show. This here gives you an idea of what the show is about.

The show is broadcast weekly (and can also be downloaded afterwards) on Resonance FM, which describes itself as "the world's first radio art station, established by London Musicians' Collective ...to provide a radical alternative to the universal formulae of mainstream broadcasting."

The interview with Yodet and Janey from the show lasts nearly an hour. I appreciate that it is quite long, so here's a guide to the order of the topics discussed to give you a flavour of it.

* how activists unmasked Mark Kennedy, the police spy who infiltrated environmentalists for seven years;

* Peter Francis, the only undercover officer who has blown the whistle on the infiltration operation;

* how police are alleged to have passed on information about campaigners to a secretive agency which blacklisted workers;

* the calls for a proper public inquiry into the undercover spies and the question of whether the police should be allowed to investigate themselves;

* the range of political groups infiltrated by the undercover spies since 1968;

* how the spies such as Kennedy and Bob Lambert duped women into having long-term relationships with them;

* The theft of dead children's identities by the spies to use as the basis of their fake personas;

* the police's use of informants in political groups;

* the deployment of corporate spies such as Rebecca Todd in political campaigns.

The song at the start of the interview is particularly worth catching. The second part of the interview is to be broadcast tomorrow.

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Comments

They won't infiltrate the ones in the Bay Area without clothespins for their noses.

Undercover gangs seem to be the new tactic in UK/Canada, and who knows where else.

I've seen it in action in protests... like a bunch of macho kids leading marches to nonsensical break up and it was effective, especially when people were just being sheep and didn't attempt any ad-hoc assembly. I also suspected for a long time there's been a bunch of Montreal-based anarchoid undercovers going across Canada back and forth to fuck up or spy on militant milieu in every city where there's one. If you're on your own and targeted by them, it can be very dangerous.

If you think about, it, it kinda recuperates all the advantages of the anarchist collective, while the inherent authoritarian structure and discipline makes it that the group won't break up and each agent will do as planned, because they support/watch each other.

The weakness of the lonely undercover is that of the individual vs the collective, but that may be much harder to isolate and expose a whole bunch of people. Nasty shit.

I think good communication and continuous open decision process based on self-critique can be good countermeasures.

way to type a lot of unsubstantiated conjecture … the closest thing you give to actual information could just as easily be the fault of inexperienced but legitimate militants.

With Obamacare, snitches in the US can finally get the stitches that snitches in Europe take for granted.

Lie to us, we'll lie to you

Spy on us, we'll spy on you

Poison us, we'll poison you

We don't care how rich you are

We just want all those who are guilty to experience the terror of their crimes

It's easy when it's not your life;

Easy when it's not your home.
But when it's your fault, it shouldn't be so easy to sleep at night.

Especially when we know where you live.

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