Another Day, Another Broken Door: The Tower's Statement on Recent Events

  • Posted on: 8 April 2018
  • By: Anonymous (not verified)

Early Friday morning, Hamilton police raided a home associated with some of those involved with organizing The Hamilton Anarchist Bookfair. The door was kicked in, a flash grenade was thrown into the house, and a full swat team entered. With their assault rifles drawn, the swat team proceeded to pull everyone out of bed some of whom were naked, and with one exception, put everyone in handcuffs. Three people were detained and one person arrested. Cedar, a member of The Tower Collective and our cherished friend, was arrested, taken away, and currently remains in custody.

Those who weren’t arrested were forced to wait outside for close to five hours, while cops “searched” the home. Similar to the fascists who attacked The Tower last month, the police thoroughly trashed the space and even messed with the bookshelves. All three floors of the house were ripped apart and many things were damaged, including a collection of framed feminist postcards that were broken into several pieces and thrown into the bathroom toilet. Police are misogynist pigs, plain and simple, without exception. A long list of items were seized, including all electronics (phones, computers, cameras, external hard-drives etc.), books, posters, zines, and a pretty random assortment of documents (academic journal articles, translated texts from a book project, hand written notes, event programs, pamphlets etc.).

In terms of the arrest, Cedar is facing conspiracy charges in relation to the so-called “Locke St. Riot”. We have no desire to engage with the politics of innocence. The concept of innocence and its flipside criminality obscure more than illuminate – no one is innocent and the most “criminal” amongst us run the economy and government. Beyond that, these notions perpetuate the logic of a colonial legal system rooted in white supremacy. That said, it is worth noting that conspiracy charges are notoriously dubious and flimsy, and have a legacy of being used as a tool of political persecution. They are an act of desperation intended to cast a wide net and scare people. Such charges are *not* a matter of engaging in a particular activity, but rather a matter of possibly encouraging a particular activity.

The Tower is an openly anarchist project that from its inception has promoted ideals of mutual aid and solidarity, equality, and community autonomy, as well as direct action, class war, and fighting back. Our politics have always included *both* gardens and riots. We want to see people building beautiful alternatives of liberation, just as much as we want to see people attacking structures of domination. Nothing about this is going to change, and despite recent challenges, our project will continue to push these ideas. We still have no tears for Locke St. and we remain unapologetically supportive of the activities that took place last month. It's actions like these that can impel conversations that no one wants to have (in this case, intensifying gentrification throughout the city), and we see this as positive.

As things continue to unfold, it is important for people to remember that it is never okay to cooperate with the police – do not talk to them and do not share any information (however big or small) with them. This isn't a question of agreeing or disagreeing with particular tactics, but of refusing to take actions that help facilitate state violence and repression. Aside from discussions about Locke St., local media has been dominated by stories of police corruption, misconduct, brutality, and most recently murder. Less than a week ago, the Hamilton police shot and killed Quinn MacDougall, an unarmed nineteen-year-old who had called 911 in distress looking for help. Cops are not and will never be our allies. We gain safety and strength by sticking together and staying silent.

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Comments

Yeah, I think it comes as no surprise to anyone that the police are going after the people associated with The Tower, despite them having little to nothing to do with the actual prole stroll. Politicians get leaned on by pissed off business owners, who then lean on the local PD to arrest *someone* to make it look like the city is doing their job, and given that the police state isn't so totalitarian that it can tell who were those masked up people that broke some windows weeks after the fact, the local infoshop with the menacing Anarchists is the best bet to make some headlines. This part has so far followed the script, what happens next, we'll see...

yeah blah blah blah you have no desire with trying to get your buddy out of jail because that'd violate your sacred tenant of "not wanting to engage the politics of innocence." great friends you people are. it's easy to say that shit on the internets when you're not locked up in a 6x4 toilet 24/7. hi five! great job guys! bs politics comes first!

I'm not sure what exactly you want here... they've been showing up to the court appearances and that sort of thing, and he was only just arraigned. Short of a fucking jailbreak, what the hell are they supposed to do?

this person had no clue what they meant when they say they wont engage with innocence as a concept. it has zero bearing on how the state treats their friend.

yea hipster, wtffff are you saying now??

This is the playbook, for sure. Something similar happened in Vancouver a few years ago. There were a few minor vandalism actions and a graphitti campaign that eventually led to the pigs needing to be seen "doing something".

The house that got raided was ransacked, laptops and phones seized, one random visitor woke up on the couch in their underwear, looking down the barrel of a very nervous cop's gun. The funny part was this person being fairly certain they were going to die because of a twitchy cop on an adrenaline high.

But nope! Just melodramatic and expensive harassment of the anarchists that led to no convictions.
FTP obviously. Piggies playing soldier, acting like they're GI Joe. Fuckin losers...

Glad you are OK, any raid like this is extremely dangerous.

Back in 2008, a police raid on my home stole a computer, a flash drive, a camera, other items, and trashed my living space so badly it took a week to repair. On the other hand, it looks like they didn't manage to get into the computer or the flash drive at all, as both had heavy-duty encryption. The only phone I had was a dumbphone, which they missed. During the raid they dropped a flash drive into the trash they made and were unable to find it-I found it myself months later. The camera had never been used for anything related to the raid, so they got nothing.

A very good sentiment. People in Hamilton though are solid long-term comrades who know their shit so I think it's highly likely people caught up in this bullshit thankfully already knew these things. But it's important to emphasize this especially for new people coming in as we saw with many unencrypted phones in the J20 case. When it comes to device security, it must be drilled into people's heads that there is no replacement for encryption and a good passphrase (illustrated here): https://xkcd.com/936/

I don't really like using that comic to explain what a good passphrase is, because it's a nuanced point that people without some math background won't be able to fully understand (wtf is "entropy"? what does "random" mean in this context?).

A better link is something like the password guide in the EFF's Surveillance Self Defense, which is explicitly marketed towards educating activists, and tends to work for anarchists of all stripes pretty well as well:
https://ssd.eff.org/en/module/creating-strong-passwords

Also, it's important to remember that encryption is only guaranteed to work if 1. you're using a standard encryption algorithm, 2. the passphrase is strong enough, and 3. the device doesn't have the keys in memory. People often forget 3, even though it's the reason e.g. the Silk Road guy got all his stuff accessed by the FBI. So remember, if you're done using your computer, turn it off! If you think you're about to be arrested, shut down your phone!

The Tower signifies the emergence of something that was imprisoned. This can be a residential move, a separation, a moment of great expression, the desire to leave for the country or for another country, or a secret revealed. Or even a lightning strike that causes a "catastrophe."

It refers, as we have seen, to a dance of joyous separation; the figures are actually acrobats flying about in a theater. This can be giving birth to something that has long been gestating and takes dual shape here—the twinship of the animus and the anima, collaborating on a long- thought-outwork.

Sometimes, if a person is seeing only one aspect of his question when interrogating the Tarot, The Tower reveals the existence of a second aspect, a second less-obvious possibility represented by the figure that has half emerged from the tower. The phallic connotation of the tower also makes it a symbol of the male sex organ and all the questions connected to ejaculation.

When it takes on a more painful meaning of abrupt separation or expulsion, The Tower can refer to an expropriation, a rupture, a difficult birth, or, in the case of siblings, when one child was wanted (the figure that has emerged entirely) and the other was not (the figure that has only half emerged). We can also read a reference in this card to a large telluric movement, an earthquake or other natural catastrophe.

Forgot one detail in the end:

"Namaste"

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