On Pluralism, Tolerance, and Tracking: The Advancing Persecution of Anarchists in Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil
On the morning of October 26, 2017, a Civil Police (Policia Civil) investigation led by a delegate defined as an expert on crimes of intolerance, started with search and seizure orders in the cities of Viamão, Novo Hamburgo and Porto Alegre, in the state of Rio Grande do Sul.
The search warrant led to the invasion of the former headquarters of the Federation Anarchist Gaucho (currently the anarchist social center), the Pandorga Squat, the headquarters of the Parrhesia Collective and the houses of several militants.
The Police claim that 30 people are being investigated, 15 of them post-graduate students in anthropology from Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), and some non-Brazilians (but they have not divulged any names).
In the operation the police confiscated books (which appeared in the search warrant as dangerous materials), computers, cell phones, xerigraphic material for making shirts, demonstration banners and pet bottles stuffed with recycling material used as bricks for bio-construction.
The anarchist book fair that was to take place in Porto Alegre this weekend was canceled by decision of the organizers. This cancellation was the form of protest they agreed upon in the face of yet another attack by the state police.
This time the egregious "Operation Ebero" - in Greek mythology, the son of Chaos - produced accusations against the militants and the stupid spectacle of linking anarchists with fascists and Nazis etc .. This type of link it is not surprising, it is inherent to the police and the state that they take their own stupidity for intelligence.
It is not enough to say that "protest is not a crime", because this is nothing more than the old lie that, depending on the occasion, both supports pluralism that tolerates even a fascist, but does not hesitate to try to destroy anarchists and aims to distinguish "common prisoner" from "political prisoner." Silly mistake.
Every prisoner is a political prisoner! No anarchist should ignore this. In the same way, one must be aware of the fact that there are no "criminals", since crime is nothing more than conduct considered unacceptable for a given political order, at a specific moment.
Crime is only a moral and political construction that interests the state, capitalism, property owners and all who cultivate appreciation for penalties, judgments and punishments. Ordinary people, too, pose as adventurers and occasionally colleagues of persons or groups that suit them, but they do not support anarchists and vainly attempt to strike them off the map. It is the citizen-cops who censure, attack, and seek to obstruct the practice of freedom.
Not surprisingly, liberal democracies, through their general police authorities, associate anarchism with intolerance. Anarchists manifest the unbearable, while liberals try to define a government of just means and ends. From a “justice” that defines freedom as a universal that is nothing more than its own security.
It is not surprising that in the midst of democracy, state violence supported by the National Security Law, conducted by the armed forces during the civil-military dictatorship against the existence of anarchist spaces, is repeated. At the end of the 1960s, in addition to the arrest of young people belonging to the Libertarian Student Movement (MEL), the police broke into the headquarters of libertarian associations and seized "explosive material” such as books, mimeographs, bookmarks, working permits, and picnic photos.
Nor is it surprising that the media resumes the historic association between anarchy and chaos, violence and vandalism--now revamped, left and right--since the June 2013 riots.
It is unacceptable that the brutality of the state and the bizarre ignorance of the media attack spaces, associations and militant libertarians.
These operations feed the spectacle of catastrophe onto social networks and television, and destroy the lives of people. Does anyone remember the 23 autonomist and anarchist prisoners in Bangu Prison, Rio de Janeiro, during the 2014 World Cup? There is talk of violent action, but who questions the vast apparatus of espionage and repression built by the state and its police forces, not only during the mega-events like the World Cup?
Coup or no coup, with governments both left or right, the persecution of the anarchists related to so-called crimes continues! State police and citizen-cops spread their surveillance in the streets, universities, corporations and public places.
Anarchists are many, just as there are many practices of anarchism, we live very well with our differences and differences in practices of freedom.
Anarchists are not pluralists! Nor are they tolerant, because they are not exhibitionists and know that tolerance exists only with an inferior who is willing to continue to be subjected.
We will not allow them to touch our companions, to plunder our associations, to stop our work, which is sometimes silent and patient, but ready for attack when threatened.
We are called monsters, vandals, infantile, violent, and various disqualifications. It matters little, because we are classified as anarchists, we are, once again, the disqualified.
However, we do not exist by authorization, we are unclassifiable!
Get your damn bloody hands off the 30 who are being persecuted in Rio Grande do Sul. Our repudiation of "Operation Ebero" is total and unrestricted!
Leave the investigations, courts and arrests for those who like them
We want free living!
Stop this absurd investigation immediately!
No one is innocent!
Long live anarchy!
nu-sol (nucleus of libertarian sociability) puc-sp.
São Paulo, October 29, 2017.