Category Archives: Yurp

The incontinent of Europe

In-depth report from the September 2000 IMF/World Bank anti-capitalist protests in Praha

Saw this today for the first time (h/t Mark Malone), and it is very interesting indeed – an in-depth report from the frontline of the ‘Blue March’ at the S26 mobilisation against the World Bank and IMF meeting in Praha in Česká Republika back in September 2000.

I haven’t managed to find time to read all the way through yet, but I surely will. Brings back some interesting memories.

Obviously not the sort of folk history we will be permitted to discuss in schools in the near future, but definitely an inspiring episode (caveats pertain, etc).

https://anarchism.pageabode.com/andrewnflood/report-prague-september-2000-world-bank-riot

‘Love/Hate’ – five seasons of Dublin-based mayhem

Nidge from ‘Love/Hate’Recently I rewatched all five seasons of Irish crime drama Love/Hate, whose twenty-eight episodes were originally broadcast between 2010 and 2014. It was exhilarating, and I caught a lot more second time round than when first I caught it.

I can’t remember how I first came upon it – I vaguely recall someone mentioning something on Twitter, and seeking it out using the usual methods, and quickly getting hooked, a bit like with Underbelly. It’s one of the few TV shows in recent years where I’ve seen it unfold episode-by-episode like in The Old Days, though because it was not broadcast in the UK (except, I think, series one getting shown on Channel Five a couple of years after it was made), some weeks it was harder to find than others. All five seasons are now available as a box set on BritBox, however.

The show’s strength for me is that creator Stuart Carolan executes a masterful feat of misdirection, encouraging the audience from the very beginning to invest emotionally in the wrong people, and playing with genre tropes to wrong-foot viewers in terms of expected outcomes. Simultaneously he builds in long-term arcs, he respects dramatic inevitability, and he has his characters act as real people, despite the artifice that cannot be ignored. Finally, his story is one which reflects real life – both Dublin criminal underworld-specific, and more universally (friendship, loyalty, stupidity, greed, betrayal).

Season one sets us up for a breezy, roustabout crime drama where sure, there’s violence, but it’s aesthetic and for a reason, and the good bad guys are clearly distinguishable from the bad bad guys, there are codes in place which everyone is aware of and generally abides by, and so on. By the close of season five, many bad things have been done by good people and good things done by bad people, heinous violence is routinely committed almost as a tic rather for any real reason, and we the audience root not for blameless innocents, but for the most charismatic sociopaths.

Anyway, in case anyone is interested I went through all of the incidents of violence in the show and created a spreadsheet to track who did what to whom. Naturally enough, it contains spoilers. Many, many spoilers.

Chronology of violence in five seasons of Love/Hate

Wikipediaphile: The Stennes Revolt

I’ve not done a WPP in ages, so I’ve shaken me folders and seen what drops out. This’un’s an interesting one, especially giving the brown-shirted tumults of recent year…

The Stennes Revolt was a revolt within the Nazi Party in 1930-1931 led by Walter Stennes (1895–1983), the Berlin commandant of the Sturmabteilung (SA), the Nazi’s “brownshirt” storm troops. The revolt arose from internal tensions and conflicts within the Nazi Party of Germany, particularly between the party organization headquartered in Munich and Adolf Hitler on the one hand, and the SA and its leadership on the other hand.[1] There is some evidence that Stennes may have been paid by the government of German chancellor Heinrich Brüning, with the intention of causing conflict within the Nazi movement.[2]

The role and purpose of the SA within National Socialism was still unsettled in 1930.[3] Hitler viewed the SA as serving strictly political purposes, a subordinate body whose function was to foster Nazi expansion and development. The SA’s proper functions, in Hitler’s view, were political ones such as protecting Nazi meetings from disruption by protesters, disrupting meetings of Nazi adversaries, distributing propaganda, recruiting, marching in the streets to propagandize by showing support for the Nazi cause, political campaigning, and brawling with Communists in the streets. He did not advocate the SA’s functioning as a military or paramilitary organization.[4]

Many in the SA itself — including the leadership — held a contrary, and more glorious, view of the SA’s role. To them, the SA was a nascent military organization: the basis for a future citizen-army on the Napoleonic model, an army which would, ideally, absorb the Reichswehr and displace its outmoded Prussian concepts with “modern” Nazi ideals.[5]

We then hear the details of the actual ‘revolt’. First, in the run-up to the Reichstag elections of September 1930, Stennes put forward a platform of demands (“These included the issuance of strident denunciations of Catholicism and capitalism (hardly a propos just before an election in a country with a substantial Catholic population), an end to corruption and bureaucratization in the NSDAP, the removal of Gauleiter power over SA men, the administration of SA independent of party administration and a fixed appropriation from party funds to be earmarked for the SA”). This did not go down well with the Hitlerian leadership. So Stennes doubled down and took his men into action, demonstrating against Goebbels instead of providing a security detail for his Sportspalast speech, and then storming the Gau office in Berlin, cracking SS heads into the bargain. In the immediate interim Hitler folded – taking personal control of the SA, to demonstrate its importance (rather than it being subordinate to the Gau bureaucracy), and raising funding for the stormtroopers. The revolutionary rump of the SA represented by Stennes saw it as vindication and perhaps even victory.

However, Hitler soon moved on to the next thing, and brought back sketchy scarface Ernst Röhm from his South American bolthole to run the SA on a day-to-day basis. Did this go down well with Stennes and his faction? No, it did not – especially when it also meant “emoving control of Silesia from Stennes”. “Stennes continued to complain; he noted that the SA in Breslau were not able to turn out for inspection in February 1931 because they lacked footwear.[28] He also complained about Röhm’s return to run the SA, objecting to the Chief of Staff’s homosexuality.[21]”

The pushback continued: “On 20 February 1931 Hitler issued a decree making the SA subordinate to the party organization at the Gau level…On 26 February, Röhm forbade the SA from taking part in street battles and also forbade its leaders from speaking in public.[30]”

When Brüning, the centrist Chancellor under the Presidency of Hindenburg (1930-1932) issued an emergency decree in March 1931 “requiring all political meetings to be registered and requiring all posters and political handouts to be subject to censorship [and delegating] wide powers to Brüning to curb ’political excesses.’,” Stennes was pushed over the edge, not least because Hitler’s “‘policy of legality’ appeared to be paying dividends in the economic misery of the depression—ordered strict compliance.”

And so Stennes “rebelled again.”

The SA once again stormed the party offices in Berlin on the night of March 31-April 1 and took physical control of them. In addition, the SA took over the offices of Goebbels’ newspaper, Der Angriff. Pro-Stennes versions of the newspaper appeared on 1 April and 2 April.[25]

The response from the leadership this time was swift and uncompromising.

Hitler instructed Goebbels to take whatever means were necessary to put down the revolt. This time, the Berlin police were called to expel the SA intruders from the party’s offices. Goebbels and Göring purged the SA in Berlin and environs. Since all money for SA was dispensed through the Gau headquarters, it was a simple matter to cut this off and the lack of funding caused the rebellion to collapse. Stennes was expelled from the party.[32]

In an article by Hitler in the Völkischer Beobachter he justified Stennes’ expulsion, referring to him as a “salon socialist.” Hitler’s editorial demanded that all SA men choose between Stennes and Hitler, declaring that the mutinous Stennes was a conspirator against National Socialism.

Hitler demonstrated his confidence in the SS by his replacement of Stennes with an SS man.[33]

And what of Stennes?

Stennes had a following among leftist oriented SA in Berlin, Pomerania, Mecklenburg and Silesia. When he left the SA and NSDAP he founded the National Socialist Fighting League of Germany (Nationalsozialistische Kampfbewegung Deutschlands, NSKD) and made connection with Otto Strasser, as well as Hermann Ehrhardt, ex-leader of the defunct Viking League (Bund Wiking). He recruited about 2000 SA men from Berlin and elsewhere along with 2000 Ehrhardt followers, and the leaders protested that the ‘NSDAP has abandoned the revolutionary course of true national socialism’ and will become ‘just another coalition party.’[34]

Well, I guess things might not have panned out how he thought. But he did swerve the Night of the Long Knives the following year, by virtue of already having been expelled from the SA and left Germany in 1933 to work “as a military adviser to Chiang Kai-shek until 1949, when he returned to Germany.”

As noted elsewhere:

In 1951, he was a leading member of the right wing Deutsche Soziale Partei (German Social Party). Afterwards, Stennes retired to private life. He applied for recognition as a victim of National Socialist tyranny, which was rejected in 1957 by the Federal Court. He lived in Lüdenscheid, until his death in 1983.

Meanwhile, link-hopping from this takes us to Otto Wagener (29 April 1888 – 9 August 1971), “a German major general and, for a period, Adolf Hitler’s economic advisor and confidant.” After service in the Great War leading to a position in the General Staff as a twenty-something young officer, “Wagener was [subsequently] involved in the planning of an attack against the city of Posen (now Poznań, in Poland), but had to flee to the Baltic countries to avoid arrest. There he merged all Freikorps associations into the German Legion, and assumed leadership after its leader, Paul Siewert, was murdered. After returning to Germany, he was active in Freikorps operations in Upper Silesia, Saxony, and the Ruhr area.”

After spending most of the 1920s travelling, by the decade’s close he had joined the NSDAP and the SA following recruitment by old Freikorps pal Franz Pfeffer von Salomon. “Wagener was able to put his business acumen and contacts to good usage for the Nazi Party [and] the SA…”

Wagener had used his business contacts to persuade a cigarette firm to produce “Sturm” cigarettes for SA men – a “sponsorship” deal benefiting both the firm and SA coffers. Stormtroopers were strongly encouraged to smoke only these cigarettes. A cut from the profit went to the SA ….[1]

I think we are allowed something of a W. T. A. F?! reaction here.

Wagener “functioned as SA Chief of Staff from October 1929 through December 1930, assuming effective command of the SA for a few months in the wake of the Stennes Revolt until the assumption of command by Ernst Röhm as the new Chief of Staff in early January 1931.”

He then became a prominent economic advisor to Hitler, until internal wrangling and expediency saw him replaced. He was nicked during the Night of the Long Knives, though only briefly, and after ‘rehabilitation’ “he resumed his career in the army,” serving during the war “at the front, rising to the rank of major general and becoming a division commander. After the war, Wagener found himself first in British and later, from 1947 to 1952, Italian prisoner of war camps.”

In 1946 he wrote a memoir “about Hitler and the Nazi Party’s early history,” though “it was not published until seven years after his death, in 1978.”

He died in 1971 in the Bavarian town of Chieming.

The ‘Great Communist Bank Robbery’ of 1959, the ‘Ioanid Gang’ and Jewishness in Soviet-era Romania…

Reconstruction of the 1959 'Great Communist Bank Robbery' in Bucharest

I recently caught a documentary film called Marele Jaf Comunist AKA Great Communist Bank Robbery. It was about a 1959 payroll heist in Soviet era Romania.

The gist is, a small group of armed robbers held up a van carrying wages to the Romanian National Bank – an unthinkable crime in a ‘Socialist’ state.

After a major police dragnet which saw scores of suspects arrested, interrogated and in many cases tortured, the cops drew a blank. Then eventually a lead turned them onto what became known as the ‘Ioanid Gang’ (named after two of its members) – five men and a woman. All were Jewish-Romanians, and either state functionaries or officers of the Securitate.

They were made to ‘confess’, and compelled to play themselves in a docu-drama film made to illustrate how they carried out their dastardly crime. This film, Reconstruction, was later shown to high ranking Party officials and trusted journalists. Subsequently all were found guilty at trial (their Party careers conveniently forgotten – now they were simply a ‘corrupt and rotten element’, a ‘swindler’, a ‘fake intellectual’, an ‘adventurer’, a ‘gangster’, and a ‘marginal element’…) and all but one sentenced to death.

A 2001 documentary film, also called Reconstruction (which I haven’t yet managed to watch), later covered the topic. Finally, in 2004 the aforementioned Marele Jaf Comunist was made, looking at the robbery, the police investigation, the making of the original documentary Reconstruction, and efforts by the son of one of the gang members to review the Securitate files.

One strand which could have been covered more in depth was the specific details of the suspects’ prior involvement in the Party and the apparatus of the state, and in particular the wartime resistance activities of some of them. One suggestion made during the film was that the execution of the five condemned men was a ruse so that they could be ‘disappeared’ and used as agents of espionage elsewhere. Again, this was not pursued with any real vigour.

So can anyone point me in the direction of any (English language) books which cover the story in depth? It seems entwined with the issue of Jewish emigration from Romania, anti-semitism, and purges within the Partidul Muncitoresc Român/Partidul Comunist Român as Gheorghiu-Dej steered towards an undestalinised ‘national communism’, so any suggestions on that front would also be welcome, as would pointers to good works on the Securitate.

Many thanks 🙂

Wikipediaphile: EUROGENDFOR

A timely wiki for you, given it’s all kicking off in Greece at the moment. Only spotted this via a mention on twitter linking to a cranky-sounding website which suggested that a “non-Greek militarized riot force may have arrived to enforce austerity” in the Hellenic Republic.

Here’s what Wikipedia has to say about EUROGENDFOR:

The European Gendarmerie Force (EUROGENDFOR or EGF) was launched by an agreement in 2006 between five members of the European Union (EU): France, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, and Spain. Romania subsequently joined in 2009. Its purpose is the creation of a European intervention force, designed after the French Gendarmerie and the Italian Unità Specializzate Multinazionali (M.S.U.) of the Carabinieri; that force will have militarised police functions and specialise in crisis management. Its status is enshrined in the Treaty of Velsen of 18 October 2007.

The EGF is based in Vicenza, in northeastern Italy, and has a core of 800-900 members ready to deploy within 30 days. This includes elements from the;

An additional 2,300 reinforcements will be available on standby. The Polish Military Gendarmerie are also a partner force, and on 10 October 2006, Poland indicated it would like to join the EGF.[1] More countries will be allowed to join in the future.

“What’s that, then – ‘happy birthday’?

Telegrams?

I want to send a telegram to-

Can I have your number please?

Uh, 7-6-2-4-3-4-1-X

The name of the person you’re sending it to?

Wednicki: W-E-D-N-I-C-K-I.

And the address?

MS Warszawa: W-A-R-S-Z-A-W-A. Is a ship due in shortly. Port of London, Millwall Dock.

Thank you. At what rate, please?

Greetings.

And the message?

Two words. ‘Ty zginesz’. T-Y Z-G-I-N-E-S-Z.

No signature?

No.

Insert forty pence in the box, please.

<4 x 10p inserted>

Your greetings telegram to Wednicki, MS Warszawa, Millwall Dock, Port of London. The message reads, ‘T-Y, Z-G-I-N-E-S-Z’.

Correct.

What’s that, then – ‘happy birthday’?

No. It means, ‘you will die’.

From Special Branch S3E5, ‘Polonaise‘.

PS Google Translate has ‘ty zginesz’ down as ‘you bend’.

Paris, Bristol, Warsaw: Street art and the art of the cinema poster (Polskim stylu)

I took these pictures a while back, but I lost them on my pootie and only just found them again. They’re of some paint-ups by Paris (I think), one over the old Target Electronics shop on Cherry Lane near St James’ Barton, the other on the back gate of the Full Moon/Eclipse (AKA Attic) over the other side of Stokes Croft/North Street.

Whilst the second one clearly features Robby the Robot from Forbidden Planet, for me both bring to mind the marvellous creativity of Polish film posters.

If you don’t know what I’m on about, have a read through this fascinating article on the subject from Smashing Magazine. It’s long, detailed, and thoroughly illustrated, so it may take a while to load.

Here’s an excerpt:

The Fifties and the early Sixties mark the Golden Age of the Polish poster. Like everything else, the film industry was controlled by the state. There were two main institutions responsible for commissioning poster designs: Film Polski (Polish Film) and Centrala Wynajmu Filmow – CWF (Movie Rentals Central). They commissioned not graphic designers but artists and as such each one of them brought an individual voice to the designs.

The School of the Polish Poster is therefore not unified but rather diverse in terms of style. It wasn’t until the Mid-Fifities, though, that the school flourished. The fierce Stalinist rule had been lifted, once again leaving room for artistic expression. The classic works were created in the next ten years. Three important remarks must be made. First, at the time the poster was basically the only allowed form of individual artistic expression.

Second, the state wasn’t concerned much with how the posters looked. Third, the fact that the industry was state-controlled turned out to be a blessing in disguise: working outside the commercial constraints of a capitalist economy, the artists could fully express their potential. They had no other choice but to become professional poster designers and that’s why they devoted themselves so thoroughly to this art.

The Polish film poster is artist-driven, not studio-driven. It is more akin to fine art than commercial art. It is painterly rather than graphic. What sets the Polish poster apart from what we’re used to see in the West is a general disregard for the demands of the big studios. The artists requested and received complete artistic freedom and created powerful imagery inspired by the movies without actually showing them: no star headshots, no movie stills, no necessary direct connection to the title.

They are in this regard similar to the work of Saul Bass, a rare example of a Hollywood artist who enjoyed total freedom from the studios. Next to a typical Hollywood film poster with the giant headshots of the latest movie star and the title set in, you guessed it, Trajan Pro, the Polish film poster still looks fresh and inspiring today.

I think my interest in this sort of stuff was first piqued on a visit to Central Europe in the early 1990s. Then I had picked up a few local comics, and was thrilled to discover that, impenetrable language aside, they used exactly the same design grammar that any child who grew up with British comics was familiar with; yet at the same time, the draughtsmanship was almost completely alien to someone raised on DC Thomson and IPC fare – sloppy curves, weird spot colour, disdain for straight lines intermixed with bizarrely angular scratchiness… And I noticed this type of design extended beyond the pages of children’s comics – it was on walls, posters, street corners, even on chocolate bar wrappers (Ama, I seem to remember, was a particularly good example of this odd new visual language).

Through the years I started to gradually pick up more and more of this sort of stuff – completely un-British, un-‘Western’, and yet at the same time thoroughly British and thoroughly ‘Western’ (it’s just difficult sometimes to recognise that your own foundations have been built into the earthworks created by someone else…) Public information signage and propaganda posters and commercial art (qv Mucha) were the areas where I found it easiest to see the parallels, the common ground; but it was in the Soviet-era Polish posters for Western movies I found the most pleasing pictures, slick airbrush art discarded in favour of strong, stylised designs focusing on concepts. I mean, if they can make crappy Whoopi Goldberg vehicle Fatal Beauty look worth a watch, anything’s possible…

These days it seems I’m not the only one with a fondness for Polish posters – there are whole websites devoted to them, and articles in UK newspapers like The Guardian and The Daily Telegraph on them too.

My favourite? Michal Ksiazek’s take on Blade Runner, known in Poland as Łowca Androidów (AKA Robot Hunter).

Balkans Scrapbook – remembering the Yugoslav Civil War through news cuttings, photographs and documentaries (plus Bolivian adventurers, Hungarian fascists, Irish bouncers, British spy cops…)

See http://davecinzano.wordpress.com for more info

I’ve long been interested in the Balkans and the break up of the former Yugoslavia, so it’s good to see Balkan Scrapbook, a blog pulling together newspaper clippings, pictures and documentary film on what went down in the early 1990s.

It’s not been up long, but there’s already some interesting content, with new stuff being uploaded all the time. The focus at the moment seems to be on foreign fighters taking part in the conflict, and the death of journalist Paul Jenks near Osijek in east Slavonia, Croatia. Jenks was investigating the earlier death of Swiss reporter Chritian Würtenberg, who himself had joined the International Platoon (PIV) fighting with the Croatian HOS militia whilst looking into links between it and a pan-European fascist network. John Sweeney (he of shouting-at-Scientologists fame) was a colleague and a friend, and he returned to Osijek nearly three years after Jenks’ death to try and uncover what had happened – which made for a riveting documentary film, Dying For The Truth, which opened the Travels With My Camera strand on Channel 4.

The whole torrid tale brought together damaged ex-servicemen in search of excitement, wannabe warriors, and some seriously scary political soldiers – not least Eduardo Rózsa-Flores, a Bolivian-born Hungarian-Spanish Catholic fascist (try saying that in a hurry) who came to lead the PIV. Flores had turned up in Croatia ostensibly to work as a journalist, but soon set up the PIV under the patronage of Branimir Glavaš, a regional powerbroker subsequently convicted of war crimes.

After the deaths of Würtenberg and Jenks, and a third PIV volunteer, Anthony Mann Grant – all blamed on Serbs, but with many unanswered questions hanging in the air – Flores did a runner to Zagreb, before melting away from the Balkans. Ultimately he was involved in a right-wing secessionist movement in Bolivia, and he was shot dead by security forces there in 2009, alongside fellow mercenaries Mario Tadic, a Croatian, and Előd Tóásó, variously described as a Romanian and a Hungarian, plus Irishman Michael Dwyer.

Dwyer had been a security thug working at Shell’s Corrib gas pipeline project in County Mayo, where Integrated Risk Management Services had accrued a reputation for violence against environmental protesters, before he was apparently recruited for the Bolivian adventure by other IRMS goons with a background in Magyar autonomist politics. As if to demonstrate how the world is getting smaller, the Metropolitan Police’s “vancop” agent provocateur PC Mark Kennedy, AKA Mark ‘Flash’ Stone, had previously infiltrated the anti-Corrib activist groups, which were of great interest to Irish and British police as well as business interests and private security groups.

But I digress – if you’re interested in the former Yugoslavia and all that happened there in recent history, then keep an eye on Balkan Scrapbook.

Edited 9 September 2012 to reflect move of blog.

FAIL #001: The Gallic Wars

If there’s one thing that the Asterix books teach us, it’s that no one remembers Alesia. If there’s one thing that cheap ‘documentary’ television teaches us, it’s DON’T LEAVE THE ONSCREEN TITLES TO THE UNPAID INTERNS.

‘Left-wing’ Greek journalist and blogger assassinated on doorstep

For anyone who tries to keep abreast of what was happening in Greece, the independent news blog Troktiko (juggled with Google Translate, for us ignorant monolinguists) is a useful resource.

But today a shadow has been cast over Troktiko. Early in the morning Sokratis Giolias, a journalist who wrote for the site, was gunned down by unknown assailants on the doorstep of the home he shared with his wife and young child.

Reports say that twenty or more bullets were fired. New Europe says an anonymous communication to it claimed that three men dressed in police uniforms carried out the killing. A stolen car apparently used in the attack was found burned out not far from the murder scene.

Meanwhile, the trial of the two cops who shot and killed fifteen-year old Alexandros Grigoropoulos in December 2008, a killing which precipitated massive social unrest across Greece and led many (both Greeks and non-Greeks) to Troktiko in search of news, is drawing to a close.

ETA:

Greece-based British blogger Teacher Dude has posted up a brief piece about Socratis Giolias’ murder, and will no doubt be a good place to find English-language material relating to this as more details emerge.

ETA:

There’s even a report on the BBC News website now.

ETA:

According to Teacher Dude police have linked the guns used to previous shootings by the Sect of Revolutionaries.

Meanwhile, Occupied London/On The Greek Riots has characterised Giolias as “a tabloid journalist”, and Troktiko as “a popular news blog with ties to the police and far-right groups”.

ETA:

The Guardian is going with “prominent investigative reporter” and “popular online newsblog Troktiko”; sixteen bullets, in front of pregnant wife; and again reference to police linking it to “domestic terror gang…the Sect of Revolutionaries”.

In contrast to the comments on the On The Greek Riots post, eg:

Giolias was not an “investigative journalist”. In fact, he was not even a journalist (he was not part of the Athens journalists’ union, he did not have a press pass).

Confirmed: Golias was not a member of ESIEA, the Athens Union of Journalists.

…the Guardian story features this:

“His cowardly murder is the work of people who wanted to silence a very good investigative reporter,” said Panos Sobolos, head of the Athens journalists’ union.

ETA:

The Independent is running with a Reuters-sourced clippings-and-press-release story that refers to “the Rebel Sect”, which makes them sound like a punk revival revue. It recycles the police statement and the Panos Sobolos quotation above.

Holla Hellas: General strike in Greece as resistance to IMF austerity measures heats up

It seems to be moving very fast over there, but at the moment there are repeated attempts to ‘storm’ the parliament building in Athens, with people being beaten back by MAT riot police with staves, stun grenades and chemical weapons. I will pull together some more detailed links later.

Twitter tags to follow:

#IMFgr
#griots

Αλληλεγγύη με τους αναρχικού και αντιεξουσιαστικές κοινωνικά κινήματα! Αντισταθείτε το ΔΝΤ επέβαλε μέτρα λιτότητας! Νίκη για την ελληνική απεργούς!

‘For Lambros’ – Bristol commemorates Greek anarchist killed by police

Remembering Lambros Foundas, killed by cops in Athens

Things seem to be heating up around St. Paul’s and Stokes Croft. Yesterday saw a large public gathering to protest against the police-supported eviction of the Jesters social centre, readying it for another Tesco Express; this morning I noticed this graffiti and paint bombing on the side of Decourcy House, the Avon & Somerset Probation Area office on Upper York Street. It memorialises Lambros Foundas, a Greek anarchist shot dead by Athens police last Wednesday. There is an obituary on Act For Freedom Now!

Bristol’s Big Freeze: What would the good people of St. Petersburg do?

When the local authorities fail to get to grips with the snow and ice, it seems that people in St. Petersburg get out onto the streets and clear it themselves, whilst wearing masks mocking their governor Valentina Matviyenko.

Let’s hope conditions in Bristol don’t descend to the level of the Siege of Leningrad, or else we’ll all be chopping up panelling in the council chamber for firewood and going on frenzied flesh hunts through the zoo.

Whether we should be doing this whilst wearing Jan Ormondroyd or Babs Janke masks is up for debate.

Meanwhile, in Crete…

Police provocateurs (or possibly fascists of the Golden Dawn/Χρυσή Αυγή) line up alongside riot police in Hania, Crete, to threaten those protesting against the state, police brutality and the senseless slaying one year ago of fifteen year old Alexis Grigoropoulos.

Anyone getting a sense of déjà vu..?

(Tip o’ the titfer: TeacherDude)

Remember Alexandros Grigoropoulos: Killed by Greek police one year ago today

Today is the first anniversary of the killing of fifteen year old Greek boy Alexandros Grigoropoulos at the hands of the police. A series of protests are planned. It’s likely to get very hairy over in Hellas in December.

If you are on Twitter the hashtag #griots seems to be back in use. If you are not, here’s some useful online resources:

  • After The Greek Riots (activist eyewitness blog in English, French, German, Spanish, Turkish, Russian & Polish)
  • Amor Y Resistencia (activist blog based in the Americas, but reported on Greece a lot last December, and might do so again)
  • ClandestinEnglish (English language blog, based in Thessaloniki)
  • Garizo (Greek news aggregator blog, with some posts translated into English)
  • GiaNt (Greek language blog, good for links and pictures)
  • Greek Solidarity Map (mapping demonstrations & occupations across Greece and around the world; seems to have been inactive since last December but might be revived)
  • Katalipsis Xolis Theatrou (Greek language blog from those who occupied the Theatre School in Salonika)
  • LibCom (UK anti-authoritarian site with updates from Greece)
  • Social War In Greece (English language activist blog, translates some of the material coming out; inactive since July but might come back)
  • Teacher Dude’s Grill & BBQ (British teacher & frontline citizen journalist in Thessaloniki)
  • WOMBLES (UK-based anti-authoritarian newswire)

Updated: 6/12/09 @ 2329 GM