France

May Day 2017 in Paris: A Report from the Streets

  • Posted on: 4 May 2017
  • By: thecollective

From CrimethInc.

On May Day 2017, massive demonstrations against capitalism and state violence took place in Paris, France. Afterwards, sensationalistic footage circulated around the world of police being attacked with Molotov cocktails. Yet these video clips do not show the larger context. They do not show the intensifying police repression of French society as a whole, nor the police attacks that provoked such desperate acts of self-defense. In this report from France, our Parisian correspondents describe the events of the day and offer more background on the clashes.

France: On Not Voting and Anti-Electoral Attack

  • Posted on: 4 May 2017
  • By: Anonymous (not verified)

I don't vote. Because I don't want to choose a master, to choose who will decide in my place what's right for me, who will force me to respect their choices, who will present those choices as my own. I don't want the majority to determine the conditions of my servitude, I don't want to the cattle to build the fences that enclose them and select those who will rule over me as well, regardless of what I think.

I don't vote because I don't want the world they force on us. I don't recognize the idea of the nation, of peoples, or of citizenship, because states always manage to construct identities that give the illusion of a unified population. My nationality, the language I speak, and the colour of my skin in no way determine who I am, and I don't recognize the borders of the state in which chance saw me born. In the same way, I don't want to hear about any “common good”, because I don't want to be part of any community – I don't want to be bound to anyone and I want to choose those with whom I build my life.

On the French Election: No bosses, no nations! No Le Pen, no Macron!

  • Posted on: 3 May 2017
  • By: Anonymous (not verified)

Two texts from issue 9 of the anarchist broadsheet Paris Sous Tension, published this week, responding to the ongoing French electoral circus.

Everyone knows the results of the first round of the presidential elections. For us, this isn't what matters. That millions of people still bother to go vote shows that we are still living in a society largely made up of obedient citizens and not, alas, of free individuals. But how could this surprise us when we know of the whole range of institutions – starting with school – that continue, year after year, to reproduce such creatures. That a majority of them gave their support to an ex-banker (a veritable messiah of the coming capitalism) and to a disgrace (a populist demagogue who plays on the hatred and resentment that drives so many of our contemporaries) reminds us that we truly have no hope of sharing anything with such people. And sadly, it shows where resignation, everyone-for-themselves, identification with the national community, the abandonment of all hope of revolution, and the erasure of historical memory can lead. Nothing surprising. But let's leave the pessimism for later.

The French Connection: An Interview With Xavier Massot On The Growing Unrest In France

  • Posted on: 23 April 2017
  • By: Anonymous (not verified)

In 2006 Xavier Massot, author of the Black Bloc Papers, predicted the rise of the communist and fascist factions in France, as well as the fall of the traditional moderate left & right parties. A decade+ later France continues to grapple with many of the issues outlined in this interview.

The State of Emergency and the Totalitarian Drift of the State

  • Posted on: 20 April 2017
  • By: thecollective

From CrimethInc.
A report from France

It appears that the French Republic is reaching a tipping point, a fundamental break with the way that rule has functioned here for three decades. Everything indicates that the political legitimization of racism and violent policing must either lead to tyranny or provoke an uprising. These two forces—tyranny and revolt—define the moment we are experiencing in France today. The confrontation is now permanent. In the following report, the second installment in our series leading up to the French elections, we explore these developments and the prospects for revolutionary movements in France.

An Imagined Dialogue with a Supporter of Taking People's Picture

  • Posted on: 2 April 2017
  • By: Anonymous (not verified)

Counter-arguments for those who no longer want to contribute to the spectacle of the end of the world, but to the end of the world of the spectacle

Translator note: translated from a pamphlet found in Paris and available online. There have been several texts circulating in the past month critiquing cameras in demonstrations, some online and some distributed as leaflets in the street. This one is perhaps the fullest articulation of the anarchist (but not just) argument against filming revolt.

Me: Stop filming or I smash your camera.

"But pictures are just raw information. They only show facts."

The photographic re-transmission of facts depends on the point of view in which the person taking the picture situates themselves, which makes it subjective even though it claims objectivity. Proof through pictures is a lie, not so much because it speaks falsely but because it claims to be true. To try to be a spectator, neutral and exempt from the power relations at play can only be an illusion, because it is in itself a way of taking sides, though indirectly.

France, Proud Exporter of High-Tech Death

  • Posted on: 3 February 2017
  • By: Anonymous (not verified)

Some analysis of the French Military Industrial Complex, why it's important to resist war, and some possible points of intervention

As the carnage in Syria continues, deaths are now counted by the hundreds of thousands. The large popular uprising that began in 2011 to overthrow the Assad dictatorship has been drowned in blood for five years under the passive, stunned gaze of the entire world. A real slaughter, with whole villages razed to the ground and a war of extermination waged against a population already decimated by hunger and privation. The insurrection was skillfully transformed into a civil war by the various international factions of power who are fighting over the resources, reconstruction contracts, and domination of the populations. Blood is spilling in the Middle East and Africa. The state, commanders, and bosses, whether they be dressed in suits, uniforms, or religious clothes, are dividing the booty at the expense of millions of peoples lives. And Europe as well is beginning to smell blood and gun powder, to once again get used terror and to khaki uniforms in the streets. Racism and nationalism are spreading, with millions of refugees are turned back at the borders, tens of thousands drown in the Mediteranean, die in trucks, or are expelled or locked up. War invades our lives ever further and constrains our present and our future.

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Debating Justice: A letter from Damien out of the Fleury-Mérogis jail (France)

  • Posted on: 16 January 2017
  • By: Anonymous (not verified)

Damien is an anarchist arrested on Wednesday, December 7 in Bretagne, charged with attacks against the Chambre of Commerce, a Jaguar dealership, and other targets during a demo that took place on April 14 between Paris’ 10th and 19th districts during the mobilization against the Loi Travail. This letter was published on January 7 and was intended as a contribution to a public discussion about how to engage with the justice system, in a bid to break the isolation that it seeks to impose.

When I heard that on January 9 in Paris there was going to be a debate about justice, I wanted to try to contribute by letter, but because I’m not allowed any visits or phone calls, I don’t have any details about the subject of the debate. The theme of justice is tied to many issues, like repression, authority, and incarceration, as well as obviously questions of defense or attack, resignation or dignity, inaction or vengeance.

This is a personal choice belonging to each individual and I don’t want to lecture about it or present myself as a martyr or hero, which I am not. So I will speak only of my own choice, one that isn’t motivated by the specter of revolutionary duty, but by desire, my own need to feel more free, more dignified, and more alive than my jailers permit.

Back in the Slammer: A letter from Damien from the Fleury-Mérogis jail

  • Posted on: 28 December 2016
  • By: Anonymous (not verified)

Damien was arrested on Wednesday, December 7 in Bretagne, charged with attacks against the Chambre of Commerce, a Jaguar dealership, and other targets during a demo that took place on April 14 between Paris’ 10th and 19th districts. This is his first letter out since being denied bail.

I’m writing from Fleury, where I’m being held in preventative detention[1]. Since the charges against me are, as usual, totally boring and unimaginative, I wanted to offer a different telling of the lovely spring night of revolt, written by some true lovers of disorder, so that my comrades have an accurate and realistic depiction of what I’m alleged to have done: “Reportback on April 14: hold in the rage too long and it bursts out like it should”[2]

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