INTERNATIONAL ANARCHIST MOVEMENT-BRAZIL:
PROTEST POLICE ATTACK ON THE GAÚCHA ANARCHIST FEDERATION:
Last Thursday, October 29, police in the southern Brazilian city of Porto Alegre broke into the headquarters of the local anarchist federation, the Federação Anarquista Gaúcha (FAG) (Gaucha Anarchist Federation), making arrests and stealing various items of the property of the FAG. The following item from the Anarkismo website is the response of various international anarchist groups to these raids, and is hopefully the beginning of an international solidarity campaign. If you can read Portguese stay tuned to the FAG website linked above for further develeopments.
International anarchist statement:
Solidarity with the Federação Anarquista Gaúcha:
Yesterday, Thursday 29th October, the Civil Police of Rio Grande do Sul, under the command of Governor Yeda Crusius, broke into the premises of the Federação Anarquista Gaúcha. Police seized various materials such as posters, minutes of meetings, the hard disk of a computer and also the contents of refuse containers that were at the headquarters. They also tried to intimidate those who came to show their solidarity and names contained in the records of the organization's website. Two comrades were arrested and charged.
The comrades of the FAG have spent years fighting against exclusion and casualisation, defending justice and decent living conditions. They are well known for their work with the "catadores" (collectors of cardboard and recyclable refuse), with the homeless and with the landless. In short, work they have been carrying on for years with those at the bottom of society.
This is the reason why the police of the State of Rio Grande do Sul is repressing the comrades of the FAG, a State immersed in corruption scandals, which takes a repressive stance against collectives and organizations that freely exercise their freedom of speech in order to criticize various anti-people policies of the government. This is the government's response to social protest. And the FAG is not the first to be attacked - we must remember the murder of the landless peasant Elton Brum or the death of Marcelo Cavalcante last February.
We condemn these acts of repression in the strongest terms. We denounce the incongruity of Brazilian government policy, a policy of the right with left-wing words. A policy that is governed by the economic parameters dictated by the multinationals and therefore their militaristic, repressive tactics.
Not only do we reject this government repression, but we also express our solidarity and support for the comrades of the FAG, for the constant and tenacious work they do with the ordinary people of their city, which the government and police authorities are seeking to silence by terror, intimidation and repression. We are sure they will not succeed.
It is important now to show support and solidarity. For this reason, we appeal to all anarchist, libertarian and grassroots organizations and collectives to protest against this attack.
Federazione dei Comunisti Anarchici (Italy)
Zabalaza Anarchist Communist Front (South Africa)
Alternative Libertaire (France)
Melbourne Anarchist Communist Group (Australia)
30 October 2009
This statement is based on the one issued by the Confederación General del Trabajo
As has been mentioned above this statement is based on one from the Spanish CGT(Confederación General del Trabajo) which happens to be the largest anarchosyndicalist organization in the world (by perhaps two or three orders of magnitude). The CGT was "first off the mark" on this matter, and Molly reproduces her own translation of the CGT statement below. For a more complete and perhaps continuing coverage of this issue refer to the CGT's press organ Rojo Y Negro. As an aside Molly has to mention that she is still in the slow process of adding all the CGT's contact info to her Links section. I was "warned" about what a task this would be by Larry Gambone of the Porkupine Blog, and what he warned me about is very much true. Every time I think that I am nearing the end of these listings I discover yet another layer of complexity to the CGT. This, I guess, is not unexpected from an union federation that can gain the votes of about 2 million people in a country (Spain) that has only slightly more people than Canada. What I see the CGT as being is the prime example (the CNT-F is the secondary one) of how to make the ideals of anarchism relevant to a modern society. I also have to admit that my project of listing the CGT allows me to put other matters in better perspective. There is little doubt that there are more "groups" (ranging from 3 to 3,000 people) in the CGT than there are "individuals" adhering at least in their best mindless fashion to certain trends in anarchism that I find repulsive in the whole fucking world. It puts a hopeful light on things, that anarchism has not degenerated into a plaything of religious cultists without God, that anarchism can actually appeal to ordinary people who have ordinary interests and needs.
In any case here is the translation from the CGT.
Solidarity with the Gaucha Anarchist Federation (FAG):
The CGT calls international solidarity and support to the assault by police at the headquarters of the FAG
Yesterday, Thursday 29 October, the civilian police of Rio Grande do Sul, under the command of the Governor Yeda Crusius broke into the premises of the Gaucha Anarchist Federation. Police seized various materials such as posters, minutes of meetings, the CPU of a computer and trash that they had at headquarters. They also tried to intimidate those who lent their solidarity and were contained in the records of the organization's website. There are two comrades arrested.
The comrades of the FAG spent years fighting against exclusion and precariousness, defending justice and decent living conditions. Their work with with the "tasters" (collectors of cardboard and recyclables) with the homeless and landless is well known. In short, a work they hav done for years with the lower classses.
This is the reason why the State Police of Rio Grande do Sul has practiced repression of companions in the FAG, a state immersed in corruption scandals and which adopts a repressive atitude towards groups and organizations who freely exercise their freedom of speech to criticize the various anti-people policies of the government. This is the government's response to social rejection. And the FAG was not the first to be attacked; we must remember the assassination of landless peasants or Elton Brum Marcelo Cavalcante's death last February.
Since the General Labor Confederation (CGT) of the Spanish State want to show our strongest condemnation to these acts of repression, we denounce the incongruity of the Brazilian government policy, a policy of right wingers with left-wing rhetoric. A policy that is governed by the same economic parameters that are dictated by the multinationals and therefore the same militaristic and repressive tactics.
Not only do we reject the government repression, but we also want to express our solidarity and support to colleagues of the FAG for the work they do with the simple people of their town, constant and tenacious work that government and police authorities have sought to silence by terror, intimidation and repression, but a silence that we are sure they are not going to get.
At the moment we consider expressions of solidarity and support from the CGT important, and therefore we appeal to different organizations and groups to make visible their rejection of these attacks.
Up with those who struggle!
Permanent Secretariat of the CGT Confederal Committee
Here are other articles and statements on this incident from the Anarkismo website. Said website also contains updates of many other international anarcho-communist organizations that have joined this appeal. @@@@@@@Other material:Sede da FAG é invadida pela Polícia Civil
, Federação Anarquista GaúchaSolidaridad con la Federacion Anarquista Gaúcha
, Federação Anarquista GaúchaBrazil: FAG premises raided by police
, Federação Anarquista GaúchaSolidaridad con la FAG - llamamiento internacional de la CGT
, CGT InternacionalΑστυνομική επίθεση και έρευνα
, Federação Anarquista GaúchaBrasile: Sede della FAG invasa dalla polizia
, Federação Anarquista GaúchaPerquisition des locaux de la Federação Anarquista Gaúcha
, Federação Anarquista GaúchaLa CGT presenta en la embajada de Brasil en España nota de protesta
, Confederación General del TrabajoComunicado de la FAU en apoyo a FAG
, Federación Anarquista Uruguaya (FAU)Pronunciamiento de la USL en solidaridad con la FAG
, Unión Socialista Libertaria (Perú)Carta de Apoio a Federação Anarquista Gaúcha
, Pró – Coletivo Anarquista Organizado de JoinvilleΚατασχέθηκε υλικό της FAG
, Federação Anarquista GaúchaCarta de Solidariedade a Federação Anarquista Gaúcha
, SolidaridadeNota de Repúdio à invasão da Polícia Civil à sede da FAG
, Federação Anarquista do Rio de JaneiroProtesto não é crime, nenhum passo atrás!
, Federação Anarquista GaúchaSolidarité avec la Federação Anarquista Gaúcha
, Confederación General del Trabajo
Finally here is the letter (in Portuguese) that the FAG would like you to send to the Brazilian authorities, along with the suggested addresses.
CARTA DE SOLIDARIEDADE A FEDERAÇÃO ANARQUISTA GAÚCHA
Viemos através deste manifestar nossa solidariedade a Federação Anarquista Gaúcha em repúdio a invasão e apreensão de materiais e equipamentos de sua sede em Porto Alegre operada pela polícia civil na tarde de quinta-feira, 29 de outubro, e a abertura de processo criminal por injúria, calúnia e difamação a mando da governadora Yeda Crusius e expedido pelo Ministério Público Estadual. Este ato repressivo constitui cerceamento da liberdade de expressão e o direito de reunião resultando em censura política e intento de criminalização desta organização.
Já é notório para o Brasil e também em nível internacional a política de criminalização da pobreza e do protesto que é operada por este governo. Repressão e processos judiciais sobre o Movimento Sem Terra, categorias em greve, dirigentes sindicais e mobilizações populares que fazem oposição e denúncia aos esquemas de corrupção instalados nos altos escalões do governo e das políticas do Banco Mundial que desmontam com os serviços públicos e atacam direitos dos trabalhadores. A pobreza da periferia das grandes cidades também é alvo desta política truculenta.
Com esta carta queremos pesar as justas reivindicações de fim aos processos judiciais e a devolução de todos os bens apreendidos da FAG como a garantia das liberdades democráticas que foram violadas pelo Estado.
Ouvidoria do Estado do Rio Grande do Sul - Brasil
Fax: 00 55* (51) 3210.4522
Procuradoria Geral de Justiça - Ministério Público Estadual
Fax: 00 55* (51) 32253288
Gabinete do Ministro da Justiça – Governo Federal
Fax: 00 55* (61) 20259556
*para chamadas internacionais.
Molly is definitely no great fan of the pseudo-socialism represented by various South American governments such as the PT-led coalition that governs Brazil today under 'Lula', and I have no doubt that said government is very much hand in glove with institutions such as the World bank and the IMF, as the comrades of the CGT and the FAG have charged. Still it should be remembered that Brazil is a federal state and that direct responsibility for the repression against the comrades of the FAG lies with the municipal and state governments. It is no doubt correct to appeal to the federal government to intervene, at least to test the limits (narrow as they may be) of their 'good faith'. The incredibly corrupt conservative state government that runs the state of Rio Grande Do Sul is controlled by the conservative PSDB party. The city of Porto Alegre used to be the darling of the "limited libertarian" fashionable left as its adminsitration allowed a carefully policed "participation" of citizens in democractically (more of less) setting priorities for about 10% of the city budget. This was instructive, as it pretty well defines the "limits" of such leftists worldwide with their calls for either "workers' control" or "popular control" ie 10%- as long as it is sufficiently overseen by an army of bureaucrats. To say the least experience with this system did more to drain popular enthusiasm for social change than to encourage it. The end result is that Porto Alegre is now run by a city administration controlled by the PMDB Party, a bizarre conglomeration, mostly centrist but with both a right wing and a left wing consisting of an ex-guerrilla Maoist cult. Very strange. To my mind direct responsibility for the attack on the FAG rests with the city and the state rather than with the federal Brazilian government. Not that the Brazilian feds shouldn't be pressured to show their hand and make it plain whether they are on the side of popular movements or of graft ridden state governments. I guess we'll see what side they are on in the near future.