What we found in this collection of reports put together by Zurbrugg, are testimonies written by anarchists who visited the USSR in the crucial years of 1920-1921, in a period in which still the majority of the anarchist movement supported the Bolsheviks, being oblivious (or in denial) of the suppression of the anarchists which started in 1918 and knowing little or nothing about the Makhnovist movement in the Ukraine. In short, these testimonies constitute a most valuable collection of encounters with the realities of an authoritarian revolution by libertarians.
These divergent views of anarchists illustrate the problem with the label: It is imprecise and malleable, and it means whatever (usually bad) things different people want it to mean. Supposedly the one principle that unites anarchists is their opposition to government, but that statement tells us little about their actual views.
Still, is it possible that self-identified anarchists from the past can tell us something about our politics in the present? Specifically, in the quest for a just and equitable society, are political labels of all kinds not just irrelevant, but counterproductive and even divisive?
In Russia radical anarchists were defeated already in the end of 1990ies (NRA case). The last underground fighter Ilia Romanov was arrested in 2002 in Ukraine and sentenced to 10 years. But have anarchists lost their combat spirit? 10 years later a new generation of revolutionaries came, they wanted more than demonstrations and antifa.
Anarchy Today team have prepared a small video on various attacks by anarchists in Belarus, Ukraine and Russia (BUR) from 2008 to 2017. By attacks we mean destruction or damage to enemy property – buildings, premises, cars, construction equipment, objects, etc.
If we release “fascism” from its distinctive ideological-historical period (that movement in Italy), then fascism appears to be a philosophical and political movement that holds the (anal) retention of History and its narrative of (phallic) progress through empire. Fascism signifies the utmost sanctification of civilisation’s repression and neurosis, born from technological development and encoded into myth through the histographic cartographies of Symbolic culture. And as we release our flesh from the chains of civilisation, we become the embodiment of all fascism hates.
For me, however, Le Guin represented something quite apart from great, memorable literature. She represented something that was meant even more than her unapologetic and outspoken feminism. During my sophomore year of university, picking up The Dispossessed on the recommendation of a favorite professor, Ursula Le Guin’s work was the genesis of my political awakening.
Why It Matters that Ursula K. Le Guin Was an Anarchist
I’ve never liked the part of the story when the mentor figure dies and the young heroes say they aren’t ready to go it alone, that they still need her. I’ve never liked it because it felt clichéd and because I want to see intergenerational struggle better represented in fiction.
Today I don’t like that part of the story because… I don’t feel ready.
January 20, 2018 marked the conclusion of the first year of the Trump era—a string of back-to-back crises that made unprecedented demands on US anarchists. Despite limited numbers and resources, we rose admirably to those challenges. Congratulations on a roller coaster of a year! Now it’s time to analyze how we succeeded, identify the opportunities we missed, and—above all—prepare for what comes next.
From Connect Savannah - by Jason Combs
THIS ONE is going to be a ride. Buckle up.
In the first installment in this Gentrification Series, I made a joke about wishing to speak with certain Leftist parties, if they would be willing to do so.
Not only was one such individual perfectly willing to do so, but I have greatly enjoyed the several sit-downs that we have had.
I will call this person the Savannah Anarchist, or SA for short.
Freedom was once inseparable from interdependence, close ties, and kinship: I am free because of others I can depend on. Today, freedom tends to mean something different. It is about being unconstrained and having options. Look for the dictionary definition of freedom today and one finds rights and choices at the core, applied to an isolated individual.