A guide to Pussy Riot's oeuvre

<table><tr><td>From <a href="http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=159104313">NPR</a>

MOSCOW (AP) — Given how world famous Pussy Riot has become, people are sometimes surprised to learn that the entire oeuvre of the women's punk band is made up of six songs and five videos.

Badly recorded, based on simple riffs and scream-like singing, the feminist singers were dismissed by many critics and listeners as amateur, provocative and obscene.

But the performance and release of each song's video mirrored important steps in the rise of the opposition movement in Russia that protested Vladimir Putin's return to power as president.</td><td><img title="I'm glad someone posted/wrote this. I was hoping for a way to talk about their railroading and the mainstream popularity of their cause" src="http://anarchistnews.org/files/pictures/2012/pussyriot.jpg"></td></tr></...
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By Friday, when three members of the group were convicted of hooliganism for performing a "punk prayer" in Moscow's main cathedral in February to protest the Russian Orthodox Church's support of Putin, it was clear the group also has won support around the world, including from stars such as Madonna and Paul McCartney and Amnesty International.
The band consists of at least 10 members who always performed in balaclavas so the identities of only the three who were convicted are publicly known.
Here is a guide to Pussy Riot's songs, including one released Friday just hours before the Moscow court sentenced those three members to two years in prison.

<strong>"RELEASE THE COBBLESTONES"</strong>

The group's first song and video are released on Nov. 7 — the anniversary of the 1917 Bolshevik revolution.
A month earlier, Prime Minister Putin announces that he and his protege, President Dmitry Medvedev, will swap jobs, giving Putin the top government post again. The announcement is followed by regional elections that the Kremlin's United Russia party wins by a landslide. Observers and government critics cry fraud, and online protests soon become widespread street demonstrations.
The Pussy Riot song recommends that Russians protest the upcoming parliamentary elections — and throw cobblestones during street protests because "ballots will be used as toilet paper," the group said on its blog.
The song's most quoted line says that "Egyptian air is healthy for your lungs/Turn Red Square into Tahrir" — the focal point of Egypt's uprising that toppled President Hosni Mubarak in 2011.
The song's video is compiled from footage of band members singing and twanging guitars from the top of subway and trolley cars. The blog says the group was formed after its members "understood that after the Arab Spring Russia lacks political and sexual liberation, boldness, a feminist whip and a woman president." From the very start, the group's members do not disclose their real names and sport their now trademark balaclavas and brightly colored miniskirts.

<strong>"KROPOTKIN VODKA"</strong>

Dedicated to Pyotr Kropotkin, a 19th-century Russian prince and one of the founders of anarchism, the song advocates the "toppling of the Kremlin bastards" and "Death to prison, freedom to protests."
It is videotaped during the band's unannounced performances in posh restaurants and boutiques, during which band members uses fire extinguishers to put out fires they have started.
The song's video is released on Dec. 1 , three days before the parliamentary elections, which trigger the largest civil protests in Russia since the Soviet collapse.

<strong>"DEATH TO PRISON, FREEDOM TO PROTESTS "</strong>

The song is recorded in mid-December, days after the first anti-Putin protests break out. As many as 100,000 people turn out in the frigid cold for demonstrations demanding free elections, and the streets of Moscow ring with cries of "Russia Without Putin" and "Putin Is a Thief."
The band performs the song on the roof of a pre-trial detention center where opposition leaders and activists are held.

<strong>"PROTESTS IN RUSSIA, PUTIN CHICKENED OUT"</strong>

The band's breakthrough performance takes place in a part of Red Square where czarist Russia once announced government decrees. During the performance, eight Pussy Riot band members are briefly detained.
Reacting to such rallies, Putin promises to allow more political competition and to take steps to ensure the transparency of the upcoming presidential election. Medvedev proposes a law to restore the direct elections of governors.

<strong>"HOLY MARY, DRIVE PUTIN AWAY"</strong>

Before the now-historic stunt at Russia's grandest Orthodox Cathedral that led to Friday's conviction, band members try to play at Moscow's Epiphany Church but are taken away by security guards. The 41-second performance at Christ the Savior, during which five band members high-kick, dance and kneel, whispering "Holy Mother, Drive Putin Away," is interrupted by guards.
The Russian Orthodox Church's initial response is mild. An outspoken cleric known for his liberal views calls it a "legal outrage" during Shrovetide week, when church tradition allows and even encourages carnival-like escapades and jokes.
But the band then releases the video with an actual song — with screeching guitars and an angry chorus urging Holy Mary to become a feminist. The song also claims the church's leader, Patriarch Kirill, venerates Putin instead of God.

<strong>"PUTIN SETS THE FIRES OF REVOLUTIONS"</strong>

Pussy Riot's latest song is played Friday afternoon by one of the band members who had escaped arrest from the balcony of an apartment building that faces the Khamovniki court building in central Moscow where a judge was reading the verdict.
The balaclava-wearing young woman also throws out compact discs containing the song. Hours later, the band's supporters dance to it near the court building — before police push them away, detaining several people.
The song mocks Putin for his alleged cosmetic surgery and urges him to marry Alexander Lukashenko, the authoritarian leader of neighboring Belarus.
The chorus says: Russia "takes to the streets to say goodbye to the regime."
Recent rallies have drawn smaller crowds than those in December, but polls have indicated that Putin's popularity is dwindling during his government's crackdown on its critics and the opposition.

Comments

can someone please explain to me why i should give a fuck about pussy riot anymore than any other group of individuals in the pokey?

they were arrested and convicted to years in prison for what was clearly an act of (anti-political) expression

because the average life span of anti-government protesters in russia is shockingly and depressingly short.

What? Anti-fascists prisoners got released after a few months.

Yeah, there are a few leftists in jail, and I don't defend that, just that State repression in Russia is beefed up by Western corporate media that seeks to cover their own regime's political repression.

Yeah, some journalists got killed by mafia thugs linked to regional governments, it's true. But but but...

BREITBART

And I don't care if he was a macho conservative. "Assassination" was written all-over his death. That without accounting for the journalists that aren't even allowed to keep their job for their not falling into line with the outlet's agenda.

What about the lifespan of anti-government protesters in Saudi Arabia?

Oh fucking please.

Why the fuck is it that all of these Alex Jones wingnuts are hopping on the anarchy wagon since OWS? You're really not wanted.

you obviously got a major problem with facts, douchebag. Letting the theory getting in the way with reality, I suppose?

I would say that they are responding to the part of the post that claimed that Breitbart was assassinated. I doubt he was assassinated as he didn't pose a threat to the State.

right. but so are plenty of people.

OK, then, because of the flair and panache with which they have gotten themselves into trouble--without hesitation, compromise, or sanctimonious seriousness.

so then how about instead of complaining that this act of repression is getting too much attention, you complain about those "plenty of people" not getting enough

How about we talk about how no matter how much public attention some people get they still get thrown in fucking jail for years, and so maybe we should do something other than worry about gaining public attention about such cases?

It's like you're looking at this shit happen over and over going "it's not working! Do more of it!"

Word, bro/sis, word.

This issue is the ultimate apogea of liberal hypocrisy.

I mean why the fuck the same media lauding Pussy Riot haven't any fucking word about those people who got like 20 years jail sentences for burning SUVs, or just several years for liberating caged lab animals?

Once-a-fucking-gain, how about you whine about those people not getting enough solidarity, instead of attacking a group who did something pretty awesome? Seriously, why the fuck call yourself an anarchist if you aren't going to show solidarity?

"do something! Do something" shrieks the activist.

... that doesn't really apply here. The point being made was that attacking Pussy Riot for getting attention is fucking stupid.

there is not a finite amount of solidarity to go around. the idea that anything portrayed in a good light by the media is knee-jerk not deserving of anarchist attention and resources is really reactionary and absurd. the world is not that simple. lauded by Madonna or not they got 2 year sentences and based on their ethics, comportment and politics they deserve anarchist support.

they got all the support they can dream of from the Western media.

Now let's talk about Marie Mason, Cece and Nikki... we never read enough about those 3 brave anarchist girls in the New York Times.

what to do when you lose a debate/argument on @news:
downvote and pretend it never happened.

No one has attacked them for getting attention. And yes it does apply here. The question being raised is one of what is the best way to support prisoners, since obviously getting lots of attention for them doesn't do shit. (and loser activists like yourself remain desperately trying to convince yourself it does, or that there is something you can directly do, when sometimes, YOU ARE POWERLESS AND THERE IS NOTHING YOU CAN DO. Its exactly that fact why anarchists fight against this system.)

"can someone please explain to me why i should give a fuck about pussy riot"

Sounds like attacking them to me, qualifiers be damned. So how about you fuck off.

"since obviously getting lots of attention for them doesn't do shit"
Spoken like someone who has never been to prison. While it's true that being someplace other than prison is immeasurably better than being in prison, failing that (which you yourself agreed, it's is practically impossible to do anything of substance) knowing that people actually give a shit is one of the best things there is. It's not "activism," since activism implies that you think it will somehow change the system being protested. Solidarity with prisoners is about helping them survive and not feel like shit.

"Its exactly that fact why anarchists fight against this system."
Thanks for explaining to me why I'm an anarchist. But again, kindly go fuck off.

op here. i wasn't attacking them. i was just asking why they should be considered any more important than other prisoners. marie mason doesn't have madonna's support. why should i spend my time supporting pussy riot?

PS: their music sucks

So your argument is seriously "because Madonna supports them, I won't"? Do you not see how fucking stupid that is?

shut up, pussy riot is fucking annoying. don't worry, the whole western world has their back,

no that is not my argument. In fact, I wasn't making one originally. I was simply asking why i should support them any more than any other people that are locked up.

Anyways, they seem to be getting an extraordinary amount of support from celebrities in the west, I don't think I need to spend my time focusing on supporting them (any more than "in spirit" that is) when there's plenty of prisoners not getting enough support.

"why should i spend my time supporting pussy riot?" != "why i should support them any more than any other people that are locked up."
Nice backtracking. In any case, you're being a dick. There was no point to your comments other than a blind search for something to hate on, simply because it's receiving mainstream coverage. Pussy Riot has done nothing to deserve your scorn, yet you jump out of the gates with a thinly veiled attack (and yes, it does qualify as an attack, see an above post I made about that). And sure, maybe your time is so valuable that an action as simple as writing a letter is too costly, but given the fact you're still defending your bullshit on @news I seriously fucking doubt that. So why should you support pussy riot *more* than any other political prisoner? No reason in particular, feel free to dedicate effort to them as well. But given your tone and attitude, I find it difficult to believe you've done anything to help them either, and instead are just some random asshole on the internet looking for something else to casually dismiss.

Backtracking? Did you read the fucking original post, you moron?

"can someone please explain to me why i should give a fuck about pussy riot anymore than any other group of individuals in the pokey?"

Kill yourself, Leftist. You probably support Julia Butterfly Hill and other watered down activist celebrities, you fucking cheerleader.

Open Revolt and Clandestine Sabotage not Open idiot carnival songs.

However, you are right, I do spend too much time on the internet.

-insurrectionalist w/o portfolio.

Did *you* not read *my* post? You went from
"why should i spend my time supporting pussy riot?"
to
"why i should support them any more than any other people that are locked up."
in a single reply. You also completely ignored the post where I pointed out that "can someone please explain to me why i should give a fuck about pussy riot" being a thinly veiled attack.

So if that individual is guilty of hiding thinly veiled attacks in their posts simply because they ignored your comment, does that mean that you are a leftist cheerleader for wishy-washy activist celebrities like Julia Butterfly Hill? You did ignore that, I just wanted to point that out..... Liberal.

AAWWWWWW HEY LOOK AT THIS FUCKING LIBERAL. Keep cheerleading, leftist.

shit posting twice doesn't make it less shit

Well, there you go, they don't live in the West. We can take a case like this, and take the cases of open persecution going on in the Northwest right now, (including media slander and local p.d. intimidation of) and tie them together and say "Russia, U.S.? what's the difference?"

The point is it's happening to us. That's why we're afraid. And that's why artists are pissed, because, well, they're artists, good or not. You don't want to care, fine, don't care, but the amount of compassion that went into this, shed a light on the tensions in Russian democracy to the extent that it reawoke a deep seeded contempt for Russias mafia state. Do I think they're any more deserving than B. Manning, no, not at all. But persecution is persecution, we're not doing this on a case by case basis. Personally I might have personal problems with people who turn up in the media talking about how they're being harrassed by _______(insert whatever arm of the state you want), but I also stand in complete and utter solidarity with them, and when if it were to ever come up in the course of any sort of relevant conversation, they're not "so and so the asshole who poopy baby were mean to me," they're my comrades, and I got their back and would hope they'd have the convictions to do me the same for me.

This might show well why insurrectionist bonnanist tactics are not wise in contexts of social passivity. Pussy Riot were able to atract more attention to something only through performance art and rock n roll. Instead the green insurrectionists got few if any coverage and attention outside anarchist circles and they got as you say "20 years jail sentences".

Carnivalistic insurrection might be more intelligent than "nihilist" violent bonnanism (the ideology propagated by Alfredo Maria Bonanno). Now of course in other countries Pussy Riot might have just gotten "public scandal" or at best "vandalism" charges and by now they will be rocking out in Moscow streets again.

so basically instead of fighting the state we should put on Carnivals?

Violence on itself does not overthrow governments and states. In the end what does that is a change in public opinion which leads towards mass refusal and sabotage of institutions, mass riots and protests.

I am almost 100% sure based on your posts you have either never read most Bonanno or just don't understand any of it.

Because there hasn't been a new story on @news allllll day.

because they play songs encouraging people to pick up cobblestones and toss them at cops rather than vote. and because they do this while challenging russian patriarchy.

it's not a zero sum game. it's not like there's some finite amount of care for imprisoned people that you need to devote to either a) pussy riot; or b) some other people.

Fuck you, hypocrite scum.

I'll remind, or inform, everyone here, that in Quebec there was this riot band that got severely censored by government powers during the strike, and major organizers detained just because they had their poster in their kitchen, for fuck's sake.

The bigges joke in all this? Mainstream media here has been massively lauding Pussy Riot (in some weird solidarity with foreign anarchists) while fucking condemning Mise en Demeure for encouraging rioting!!!

The whole Pussy Riot story is entirely politicized, in favor of Western countries. Whether or not Pussy Riot are authentic anarcha-feminists or prostitutes paid by Open Society Foundation isn't much relevant. The Western media are desperate into using anything that'll defame Putin's regime, because THIS IS WAR PROPAGANDA.

Poor Putin.

I poop both on Obama and Putin.

you're probably stupid

What I like about the band is even though the three that have been imprisoned and became celebrities to the west, anyone can put on balaclavas and either become the band or throw some stones.

Yeah, go make a savage Pussy Riot concert, wearing balaclavas, in the HQ of some major bank, or throw some stones at the windows. Let's see how the same press is gonna hail you as they do with Pussy Riot, and how your prison sentence will compete with 2 years of sentence. If you haven't got into a GRAND JURY even before you did anything, consider yourself lucky.

Oh and fuck... I'll repeat it again:

Grand Jury!

You say "grand jury." I say "solidarity!"

Grand jury!

nobody is going to convene a grand jury for a concert in a bank lobby, though you probably will get arrested.

stone throwing, on the other hand...

Ooooh I'm so booooored!! Where have the witty trolls gone, or super-serious intellectuals to bait? Emile, or Trollstroll, where the fuck are you when we need you?

Current news cycle is boring and without major incident. This pussy riot smells like teen spirit. I'm playing more video games and studying the role of the Silk Road and the impact of the Ottoman Empire on Western Europe. The European colonization of the world was created because Western Europe decided to work around the Ottoman Empire.

The study of American and its role in colonialism seems interesting, though historically incorrect in placing a colonial role on them. English Canada would be the force that most represents colonial power in North America after the American Revolution for Independence. It is more correct to place imperialism and genocide on Americans, though with a broken relationship with a metropole, what were colonialists became settler invaders and not a colonial force, more like the Vikings of Britain than the Normans.

The invasion of protestant Christians also largely define America away from the concept of a British colony gone renegade. The desire to practice weird sects of protestant Christianity, combined with Freemasonry as a center of power (which are often at odds with each other) make America hostile to European nobility and clergy. While Anglican, Lutheran, Catholic and other denominations from Europe existed in America, politically they were weak during America's Industrial period, which defined America as an autonomous invasion of settlers that were repressed in Europe.

The colonial period ended with the colonialists and colonial power fleeing to Canada. What remained was more akin to Huns. But unlike the Huns, the American migrants contributed to the genocide of American Indians rather than the fall of Rome. The American migrants are barbarians without a home. Unlike the Europeans, the American Indians did not advance their technology to repel the invaders. The Romans and later Medieval Europe grew their technology to prevent the Huns and other barbarians from doing to them what American migrants did to the American Indians.

There are many other comparisons to settler invasions and why terming America as a colonialist power as incorrect. Crusades that left behind countries like Lebanon, Vandal invasion of Northern Africa to become Berbers, the Lombard invasion of Northern Italy, history is full of examples.

What makes the American situation unique is the continued waves of invaders. America had become a dumping ground for the waste of Europe. Those Europe did not want came to America. It was a "land of opportunity and freedom" to European rejects. The poor and the weird, the narrative of America as liberty hides that its real narrative is one where Europe said STFU and GTFO to the American migrants and being scumbags of the third degree, they screwed over everyone they could to prove that sick fucks could make a new society.

American mass shootings and serial killings is more common to America because American culture is founded off of sick bastards that were more successful in genocide, eugenics, slavery and brutality of war than any prior nation. Unconditional surrender is an American concept that was defined by the American Union of the civil war with roots in the Manifest Destiny (i.e. Indian Wars). This concept was defined further in "Body Count" during the Vietnam War.

This is the history of the United States. Scumfucks nobody likes becoming the rulers of the world. Our social problems as the largest drug abusers of the world, the largest prison population, the most murders outside of war, the most mass killings, the most serial killings. American foundations of freedom is for the protection of scumbaggery. Defending nazis is freedom, defending the poor is slavery.

Having no history of nobility, there is no American indigenous aristocracy to appease. There might be motions to create a demeanor of morality, but without historic ties to the land, American powers destroy whatever benefits them and protects whatever benefits them in the short term. There is no thousands of years of rooted elite history that sees the land as sacred. There is the dismissed indigenous population that haven't realized their role has more in common with European and Middle Eastern nobility. It is the American migrant that is the barbarian.

funny rant. ideas promoted by a european perhaps?

Hah! Isn't history fun? Take a fistful of red pills.
Skip to the end, turns out everything is built of blood-drenched lies!
We're all the descendants of the greediest and most ruthless.
Here's to the apocalypse, you know?

Fuck yeah >>>>>>>>

Let the fucking war begin >

Thanks, a very concise and informative analysis of modern American history I must say, however I question the extent of the restrictions to colonization by Europeans that the Ottoman Empire imposed upon its western neighbors. You must remember that colonization/invasion is primarily a maritime exercise, and that land bridges had only played a major significant role in the migration of peoples in the neolithic ice-age, when sea levels had dropped and made transcontinental passage possible in a time when trans-oceanic vessels were non-existent. Sure, the Ottoman Empire did wall off an eastern land passage and hinder some major colonisation up to the 17th century by Europeans, or 300yrs into the Ott.E's history, particularly stemming what may have been continuous cyclical crusades to Jerusalem every 80-100 yrs, scenarios of the 6th or 7th crusade come to mind. However, the Portugese had mastered the contruction of the caravel which at 300-400 tons and of a seaworthy construction enabled them, and the Spanish later, to round the Cape of Good Hope and path the way to the Eastern markets by sea that the Silk Road had formerly done by land. In other words, the presence of the Ott.E's border restriction had influence up to about the early 17th century, but for the remaining 400yrs of its existence, Ott.E became an insular state land-locked in by its own Islamic codes which include a non-missionary ethic. Osman was more concerned in preserving Islam from repetitive Christian invasion. In a round about way (ha, the Cape of Good Hope, ironic) the Ott.E did influence the colonization of the world by Europeans, but not completely in the fashion or time slot that you declare.
But yes, it IS the American migrant that is the barbarian, and the modern crusader also it seems.

Hal

PS. I should also mention the outward colonization by the Mongol Empire which reached Constantinople in the 13th century and extended east to the north Pacific. It seems apparent that just as the Romans and earlier Alexander had reached a geological and logistical barrier in the Himilaya, Gobi Plateau, Mongolian Steppes that would have prevented this region from becoming a major route for colonialist conquest, but instead rather a narrow winding circuitous path only able to be traversed by camel caravans. Colonialism was built on gun-boat diplomacy, not camel packs and worn out knee ligaments.

The point of Christopher Columbus' exploration was to find another route that would be shorter and more beneficial than going around Africa. The point of both was because prior to the Ottoman Empire, this route wasn't hindered as much. The Eastern Roman (Byzantine) Empire, as you exposed, was the host of Crusades as well as enabled European trade through the Silk Road without as much problem. I think we are in agreement. I'd also agree that once it was exposed that America was a new continent and not India, the game changed and the Ottoman Empire slowly declined.

Sorry, but no....

The European colonization of the globe started when the silk road collapsed upon the rise of the Ming Dynasty in China, which expelled the Mongol invaders and transformed the largely cosmopolitan and trade-based society they'd built into one far more nationalistic and xenophobic. As a result, Europeans turned westward, first to Atlantic islands like the Canaries, then to the Americas with the backing of states like Spain and England and the early financial elites of Italy and the Netherlands.

America's war of independence quickly followed attempts by the British crown to limit colonization of indigenous lands (The Royal Proclamation). It was a shift from an aristocratic state into a capitalist one, much like the French revolution, which certainly didn't stop them from continuing their colonial ways. Following that they conquered everything to the pacific, attempted to conquer Canada, then took a good chunk of Mexico, then an expanding strata of island nations, a trend which continued right up until the Neo-Colonial era, in which they've unquestioningly been world leaders.

Canada has never had this kind of colonial legacy. It was a colony, it played a role in various colonial wars with the rest of the empire, but it never had many, if any, colonies.

Ah canadians...always acting like the maple leaf state's shit don't stink. there are six nations in ontario alone for starters, whose land canada is actively colonizing.

Uhh, yeah, Canada is a colony, built entirely upon indigenous land, as is the US, and every other colony on the planet. Doesn't make Six Nations a "colony" of Canada.

Also worth noting is the fact that the Six Nations' traditional lands actually lie mostly in the United States. They were displaced during and after the war of 1812, where Tecumseh a massive native uprising and sided with the British, for which they were awarded their (now severely depleted) lands in Ontario. This war pretty clearly shows how the two sides were seen by indigenous people at the time.

I live within spitting distance of Six Nations. I'm well aware of the ugly side of Canada's colonial history. This isn't about pariotism or national rivalries, it's about history. America has a very well-studied colonial history, and that just can't be written off.

Nor should it be written off and as far as "patriotism or national rivalries" go, I can understand how my snide jab may have polluted the discourse but please, let me continue. I got a lot of love for my brothers and sisters up north but every time the historical and present conditions of social and environmental abuse are discussed, i always her some apologetic variation that "well, the US is worst than Canada", which more or less may be true but only cuz the US has the militarily and financial power that Canada is aspiring to obtain. Not because the later of the two is more noble as your references to broken treaties infers.

That is how I knew right away you were canadian, simply by the overtly defensive tone in your comment, which again manifested its self in your rebuttal of whose the worse of the worse, admittedly provoked by intellectually childish and lazy comment. But dare I say, that the lazy comment was in turn provoked by the obvious undertones of "patriotism and national rivalries" rife in yours?

All I'm trying to say is Canada was not created in a vacuum and did not receive a clean state just because it was granted statehood for being an obedient colony of one of the most imperialistic and neocolonial empires ever to exist.

From the tar sands to the canadian mining companies abroad, its involvement with the imperial military alliance NATO and it's G-8 membership, the colonial war still continues. There is no state less evil than another. the only difference is the resources and level of control they posses to further its brutality.

Americans aren't colonialists OP here. My point wasn't that Canada was better nor that colonialism was humane. My point was that America had become different from British colonialism. Without a metropole the United States was free to act as an imperial force in its own right and the nation of people that joined it were the scumfucks of Europe that saw America as an open call to invade American Indian territory.

This history still continues to impact the behavior of American culture. With the utopian visions of the founding fathers, with the religious nature of Jacksonian democracy, it painted the raw invasion as an expression of god-given liberty.

The concepts of negative liberty is a concept of government non-intervention. When applied to how people actually behave, it isn't an expression of freedom, it is an open call to exploit others without state consequence.

I should also point out that with America not being a colony, it allowed immigrants from any nation to join in on the invasion without empowering enemies. While Canada was a British colony, it attracted only a British surge of immigrants with a much smaller number of immigrants from other nations. By participating in Canada, the migrant was participating in British colonialism. By participating in America, the migrant was participating in an open invasion.

You're working pretty hard to avoid the label of "colonialism" here, in a case where it can't help but apply. That's blatantly dishonest and more than a little offensive - it totally ignores a couple centuries of really bloody history. This wasn't just some petty "barbarian invasions", it's been an explicitly colonial from the beginning, as anybody who ended up under the thumb could tell you - the western US, northern Mexico, Puero Rico, Hawaii, or Guam could tell you.

Your definition of colonialism is lacking for western US and Northern Mexico. That is an aspect of settler imperialism. However, Puerto Rico, Hawaii and Guam would be colonialist. As would Alaska. Colonies are distant from the metropole. If colonialism were just any imperialist invasion involving settlers, then there would be no need to define colonialism different from imperialism.

The United States isn't a colony after the American Revolution, but it did become a colonial empire in its own right in the late 19th century. Puerto Rico and Guam were colonized by the Spanish until the United States seized it. Hawaii was a kingdom that was first assisted by traders in "uniting" into one kingdom, then later deposed and annexed into the United States. Alaska was partially colonized by the Russians and Spanish before the United States purchased it and colonized it. The Philippines was also seized from the Spanish by the United States to become its colony, but became Independent after World War 2.

The expulsion of the Mongols only strengthened the silk road. It was the Ottoman Empire (a Muslim empire) seizing of Constantinople (now Istanbul) and the raising of tariffs that forced Europe (largely Christian) to look elsewhere for routes to China.

Your explanation of what the U.S. did was not colonization. That is simple invasion imperialism.

Canada was a British colony and only recently has become an independent nation.

Check your history bro, the Silk Road ended for a century or so with the Ming Dynasty expelled the Mongols and closed China's borders. Tariffs on silk don't really matter when there's no silk to trade. Yes, the Muslims played a role, but they were hardly the only factor or the decisive one.

Okay, checked and I'll agree somewhat. The Ming Dynasty, the spread of the plague and the rise of Islam all played roles in the end of the silk road for a period just after the Yuan Dynasty collapsed.

By the time Europe was recovering from the plague, they attempted to avoid the Ottoman Empire by relying on maritime trade in an effort to break its monopoly on the silk road, creating a new silk route.

I think your analyze came out beautifully and thanks for some desperately needed, worthwhile reading on a slow weekend.

The part I find extremely interesting, is the part about "The American migrants are barbarians without a home". Especially when considering that the US is unique for an industrialized state and most if not all non-industrialized states in that 3 million people live transient lives. This is without mass displacement from war, famine...ect and no, the stats if i remember correctly do not include those that are considered homeless when considering that 3.5 million people alone, experience homelessness in any given year (according to the fact god wikipedia) Yet it does include hobo's, so i imagine there is bound to be a cross over.

With that said, I find it all reflective of the wild west fetishizing and the varying mass pilgrimages that accompanied it, which came long before the population booms that occurred upon the discovery of exploitable resources, all though I'm sure the prospects were always there.

However, I feel that the mindset of the early invaders needs to be considered separately from the mindset of the state, which was fully administered from the blood and tradition of European aristocracy and entirely imperial from its very creation.

I would agree the United State's state mindset is influenced heavily by European states and entirely imperial. The borrowing of Greek and Roman traditions along with existing in the shadow of the British Empire established precedents for the U.S. state.

However, the behavior of the U.S. invasion is more akin to European barbarian invasions on Rome than Rome itself. Roman imperialism had a great deal of respect for those it invaded, allowing high levels of autonomy in exchange for tribute. This was not the method of the United States. The U.S. state backed and legitimatized settler invasions. This began with the American Revolution, which was also the largest war against American Indians. The United States seized the Northwest Territory that the British had claimed during the French and Indian War, but left for use by American Indians. The greedy settlers wanted to invade and seize as much land as they could. This was made possible with the passage of the Northwest Ordinance.

With this ordinance, it established the rules of invasion. It established legitimacy for settler invaders to first enter American Indian territory claimed by the United States and populate it, then once a sizable settler population was established, it would be incorporated as a state.

The settler invasion was probably the most vicious aspect. We'd like to think that it was the government that wanted this, but this is not the case. The settlers had come to America to rape, pillage, plunder and own American Indian territory. They weren't here because any government told them to stay here. Those that had any decency or self-respect left to the British colony of Canada or returned to Europe.

The migrants from Europe after the American Revolution came to the United States not because they were indentured servants, as many of the original colonialists had been. They came for wealth at the risk of their lives. This is the very same attitude of barbarian invasions. Governments didn't control barbarians to invade the Roman Empire. They came on their own accord.

Perhaps it could be comparable to the crusades as well, with the Eastern Roman Empire (Byzantine) calling for Western Europe to help it against Muslims and the pope backing the call by making it religious to seize the holy land and slay infidels.

SuperInteresting re-romanticism of americans as barbarians and nomads, anti-political criminals! - rather than boring old overstudied 'colonialists' in their buckleshoes hunting witches.

I wouldn't call it romantic. You are either stupid, trolling or both. Barbarians shouldn't be romanticized and some anarchists do wrong by attempting to apply this label. The comparison was merely a technicality in how people conceive American brutality. On the continental United States, during and after the Revolutionary War, what were colonialists had become scumfuck invaders that were far more brutal than most any other imperial power in history.

We don't refer to the Goths, the Vandals, the Lombards, the Huns nor the Vikings as colonialists. These barbarians were not some freeing force on the Roman Empire. This is the history of the world we are talking about and it is about time it is examined for what it is rather than simplistically lumped together to make broad denunciations of merchantile and capitalist imperialism.

The barbarian invaders never left and they became part of the countries through time. There is no answer to colonialism, slavery and imperialism. Healing can occur today if people want to, but my point is that this is something that has happened throughout history and no people can be blamed for how history turned out. History is also not static. This type of stuff, perhaps with a new spin, will happen again and again.

You've been called out on your 'spin'. I'm clearly not stupid (and it's quite sad that's always your same pathetic comeback; it's really tiring).

Stupid or trolling?

Must be trolling.

The answer is neither. You are really a bore.

The answer is both. You are stupid and a troll.

No, I'm not. And your continuing to say it over and over isn't going to make it true.

You are a troll. You are stupid. Na na nana na.

Furthermore, your analysis is obviously borne out of a need (that you were indoctrinated with) to create a new 'angle' - a new little industry -within academia - a hot new way to apologise for american brutality.

Suck it. You don't even *know* that you're stupid.

Where is the apology? An explanation that American settler invaders are worse than colonialists doesn't sound like an apology. An explanation of colonialism is an attempt to ensure a better analysis of the issue. American colonialism, as the other poster pointed out, exists in other arenas outside of continental North America. What happened inside continental North America from the United States was invader imperialism, not colonialism.

Please review the language of your posts.

How about you do it? I know what I said and it wasn't an apology. Find something in what I wrote as you are the one making accusations.

"The barbarian invaders never left and they became part of the countries through time. There is no answer to colonialism, slavery and imperialism. Healing can occur today if people want to, but my point is that this is something that has happened throughout history and no people can be blamed for how history turned out. History is also not static. This type of stuff, perhaps with a new spin, will happen again and again."

Dialogue is obviously useless.

"Healing can occur today if people want to"

"no people can be blamed for how history turned out."

"This type of stuff, perhaps with a new spin, will happen again and again."

We are not at the end of history. American settlers can apologize and attempt to heal wounds caused to the American Indians, but that isn't going to stop further aggression from settlers. How is that an apology for settler aggression?

if this had happened in the US they'd be in jail/in trouble too.

just look at the Michigan Bash Back church interruption!

fuck anything the US state department takes up as a cause celeb.

this is so fucking stupid. fuck every state and every government. free pussy riot and murder every state department hack who tried to manipulate their case for their own purposes. fuck i hate everyone.

apparently some anarchists were at the NYC rally in support of pussy riot. glad to see anarchists can be manipulated by the state department so easily!
http://nymag.com/daily/intel/2012/08/pussy-riot-times-square-protest.html

just because the US temporarily finds itself self-interested in delegitimizing a foreign despot doesn't mean the people who are struggling against that tyrant are all puppets, or that their struggle is worthless. That the CIA funded radio stations in Hungary doesnt make a massive workers uprising against the USSR in 1956 Hungary suddenly undeserving of our attention, for example.

We re anarchists, against all States, everywhere, all the time - we don't pick and choose which anti-state struggles (im not saying all or even much of the anti putin sentiment is anti state, but certainly pussy riot would fall under that category) to join or support based on a simplistic reading of temporary US interests.

That has been the approach for decades of the anti imperialist Left, a nice legacy of Stalin among others, and it results in such lovely historical ironies as "communists" supporting dictators like Slobadan Milosovic, Al-Assad, and Fidel Castro. No fucking thanks.

We have very little control over what other political currents or State actors do with their every-changing allegiance, which means any situation we wade into will be complicated, even totally domestic ones. We have to be aware of the complicated political seas that "our" currents flow through - a naivete of these things is tantamount to political suicide (sometimes literally). But we dont stop supporting or identifying with anarchists who are imprisoned by other States for their activity just because the New York Times and the US Left find it temporarily convenient to put a spotlight on them in the interest of "Human Rights" rhetoric. We have the difficult but necessary task of exposing as a hypocrisy this false wave of attention from those who would likely be Pussy Riot's enemies were they a domestic phenomenon, while at the same time remaining steadfast in our solidarity, which hopefully means more than (just) waving red and black banners in NYC. This is what we do.

(And btw we dont just have to do this with words of course - attacking symbols or parts of religious patriarchy and the State physically, in ways that the liberal media cannot recuperate, in support of Pussy Riot seems a great way to highlight the US State's hypocrisy around this, and steal back this whole narrative from those who want to turn Pussy Riot into temporary liberal media darlings rather than anarchists and one-time members of an "art group" that flipped cop cars and encouraged riots...)

Hear hear....I might even flip this around to point out that a lot of pro-Chinese and Russian State media has actually reportedly favorably on OUR attacks and organizing in the US, including on things like the Oakland Commune. Obviously they did this for their own reasons. Does this mean our comrades in the bay were just manipulated by the Russian State? Or that anyone overseas who takes inspiration from us is a pawn of russian imperial interests?

here here

No but it means that the only reason that there was the NYC protest was because of the attention the state department garnered for the case. Hence why a bunch of non-anarchists were also there: the western media did an amazing job keeping their connections to Voina and to anarchism unsaid. Just amazing how lockstep it was. We live in a fascist propaganda factory. What is real? No one knows. Only the violence that forces is to keep working.

*that forces us

this is why an anarchist international could be a good thing, right?

i'm definitely NOT saying that from a platformist position.

you re probably right, that the media attention had something to do with the protest happening and those kinds of people showing up. But this rather than snarking about it on the sidelines, why not show up at such things (if its already something we legit care about) and make it something better? Or at least expose the hypocrisy of the Left media with counter info, our own actions for pussy riot, etc.

Of course we live in a crazy propaganda factory (i wouldnt call it fascist, rather democratic i think is more appropriate in our US situation...). But i was respnding to a poster that seemed to be implying that the cause against putin or the russian state was BS cus of the state department. Anarchists HAVE to have a more nuanced analsysis of politics than this - otherwise we just start parroting the "anti-imperialism" (re: russian imperialism) of Stalinists and their ilk, that anything bad for the US is good for us, etc.

I also think that excessive snarkitude around these kinds of protests leads us down a slipperly slope of dumb conspiracy theory thinking....True, the media machine is out in full force on this, and anarchists have to tailor their response to that AS WELL as to the russian struggle, but that doesnt mean that every protest and protester is a pawn without their own agency or desires, or that a russian struggle couldnt get out of hand and go far beyond what the US state department would like to see (Hungary, again, is a good example here...)

I might also add that, probably ANY significant social struggle from within India, CHina, or Russia, might have to deal with this dynamic of temporary or tentative "support" from the US. As anarchists who hate Chinese capitalism and authoritarianism just as much as US capitalism (is there a difference any more, anyway?) we have to be aware of that dynamic. Capitalism is currently more global than ever, but also in a phase of shrinkage and austerity - the US is gonna be hatin on some china, and looking for excuses to destabilize it, and vice versa. That doesnt mean US anarchists should sit on the sidelines making snarky comments about chinese rioting over chemical spills or miners rioting in bangladesh are pawns of the State department. nah mean?

Shit... didn't realized that I could get paid, armed and equipped by the local Russian embassy to smash banks here! Go Putin!

Can't stop the BRICS-backed chaos!

Uh no but you can get favorable coverage from RT about how the US police/courts are suppressing free speech and brutalizing you.

SO if we're against all states why do we give a fuck about their reaction?

agreed.

Oh shit, someone's making perfect sense and not being ridiculously hyper-reactionary...

We must have an anarchist specific analysis and support anti-authoritarian struggles everywhere even if a particular one might play in part in US empire interests.

yes....but i think its important to understand that if the struggle against Putin went in an anarchist direction, it WOULDNT actually be in US interests. A foreign imperial power that recognizes its own temporary economic interest in another country's social movement does so in a machiavellian fashion; a legit anarchist situation would be uncontrollable from a foreign power, and therefore would quickly become undesirable as well.

There are many many examples of this - the french and prussians coming together after a brutal war to suppress the Paris commune; the Russian position towards republicans and anarchists in the Spanish Civil War; the Communist Party in its treatment of French partisans during WW2; the US State in its treatment of Hungarian revolutionaries and council communists in 56; etc. etc. etc.

All of these situations involved a hypocritical, duplicitous dynamic on the part the foreign "benefactor" - manipulatin the situation to its own ends, usually with disastrous results for the actual militants on the ground. A legitimately anarchist approach to toppling a dictator is not to replace a dictator with a democracy or whatever, as the US may want in specific situations like Syria or Libya or Russia, but toppling the entire state and capitalist apparatus. This would be even more disastrous for foreign economic interests than an unfriendly dictator - at least they can be bought off or threatened by traditional methods.

THis is crucial to recognize - in no situation do our interests and those of Empire allign, even temporarily. We may be at a protest subtly endorsed by a certain State, but we are the "bad protesters" , the ones who encourage uncontrollable methods, seizures of property, a disrespect for all police, and a thousand other sentiments that would prove disastrous to any foreign economic interest anywhere.

We must be involved in all relevant struggles, regardless of what some foreign State actors may think. But we also cannot be confused into a nascent populism, easily manipulable alongside more single minded "rights activists" or nationalists. We have our own politic we seek to spread, of uncontrollability, ungovernability, a complete disrespect for property and wealth ownership, a resolute anti capitalism.

i don't think anarchist news is real.

now if only this bands music was good

i see them more as political performance artists rather than as musicians. You must be some sort of hipster who reads the Pitchfork music website all the time. So who cares if they get 2 stars over 10 in a review by Pitchfork. This was mainly a political and rok n roll motivated act and it obviously succeded at that level and not something intended to earn praise from the hipsters.

these girls had a nice stunt that makes for cut headlines and baby talk, but this is the only real:
http://www.vice.com/vice-news/the-new-zapatistas

And they also got praise from the hipsters. They are awesome

i don't think you are real.

Gotcha!

if only they had a real drummer...

not having a drummer might make it easier to set up guerilla shows, and they not being very good musicians might make it easier for anyone to become part of the band.

DIY portable drums do the job.

They rock out very nice and from the pictures much better than many bands with drummers.

Big Black seemed to manage without one.

a TR-505 is not very anti-civ!!!!!!

Worker, I never got to say thanks for the pictures! So classic!!!

I dont think free pussy riot is very important frankly. There are so many political prisoners, Russia doesn't even have as many prisoners as the USA does. Obama is worse than Putin. We need to go after the prison system here, I don't care about Free Pussy Riot.

"songs and five videos"

This world is not fair. So many other artists are so much more prolific, and honest in their anarchism.

For instance...me!

http://bensommer.com/blog/my-anarchist-songs-contribution/

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