In the early morning between june 20th and 21th, the Santander bank office of Ciudad Universitaria (Universitary City) in Madrid, was torched. We don’t need an international financial summit to hate and attack the Capitalism and its enterprises. We want with this action send all our strength and solidarity to the people that are suffering the repression for acting against the last G20 in Hamburg.
The night between the 24th and 25th March 2017, after months of preparation, we jumped over the fence in the premises of the Cavalry Unit of the National Police in Madrid and placed an incendiary device under one of their off-road vehicles.
We carried out this action against the G20 summit and we dedicate it to all anarchist prisoners.
We understand occupation (squatting) as a tool of fight whose main purpose is far from the idea of shaping recreational places. It is an strategy to fight, theoretically and practically, against property as a key pillar of capitalist democracy. Occupation (squatting) is beyond merely logistic.
It brings partnership among comrades, builds affinity networks and solidarity, as well as create meeting points to discuss, share experiences or to make out some self criticism. Okupation is not and end but a mean that allows us to organize ourselves and conspire. It is a tangible expression of the notion of “Do it yourself”.
The power has done everything to erase any self-management projects since they prove our capacity to organize ourselves outside the system. For that purpose, many strategies have been deployed. From harsh repression; raids, arrests, police farce, to “kinder” strategies based on negotiation. Despite superficial differences, the final end of these strategies is the control and domestication (of our ideas and practices) of social movements.
For some time now, Madrid City Council, a so-called council “of change”, has deployed a warfare of harassment, threat and burnout against squatted social centres. They disguise their real purposes through a deceiver maneuver of fake dialogue, using blackmail to achieve the assimilation of these collectives. What is been sold as an exercise of tolerance and understanding, as an effort to strengthen social networks, is nevertheless an attempt of demobilization and devitalize those who don´t accept their imperatives.
Throughout bureaucratic mechanisms such as buildings maintenance checkups or inspections of the developed activities, the City Council offers two options: regularisation or eviction. They offer to allow keeping on with the activities in social centres as long as they are supervised by a competent authority. It could be done in the actual location provided that they are establish as legally constituted associations or making a request for a ceded public place. Administrative sanctions, seals, identifications and city police regular visits are used as a tool of pressure. City´s regulatory framework whereby the guidelines concerning the transfer of public places to collectives, approved by the city council in February 2016, provides the basis to polarize once again the squatting movement between legal or illegal projects.
As anarchists, we believe squatting can´t be legalize since it´s purpose is precisely transgress every rule imposed by the political, social economical structure. To accept their rules would legitimate their tutelage. We place ourselves against the creation of squatted places under the cover of any governmental institution and we reject any negotiation, agreement or dialogue that could mean to surrender completely or partially to our perspectives of action and direct confrontation. We believe in conflict. We believe the State cannot be defeated from inside. That is why, we call to solidarity with the squatted social centres threatened by eviction in Madrid, and by extension, all occupations that defy power standing up to its threats.
The way to express support depends on the means and possibilities that each one of us has, but we encourage, this month or further, to undertake actions and activities that bring attention to our positioning and our determination not to give in to either the State or its threats.
Let us multiply the anti-authoritarian ideas and practices of solidarity and fight. 10, 100, 1000 squatted social centres.
This is why on February 8th we sabotaged the ATM of Santander bank in Altsasu (Navarre), Basque Country, to be linked with the exploitation of prisoners in the Spanish state. There is no need for a lot of resources; a hammer and a little determination are enough.
Freedom for the comrades immediately.
Death to the state and long live anarchy Madrid — 113 ATMs rendered unusable
With this action we tried to break, even if only for a moment, the cash flow, the normal consumerism of this lobotomised and automaton society.
While the powerful continue to profit from their lives of luxury and privilege, from where they run the open-air prison in which we live, we are constantly monitored by cameras, mobiles and social networks… Each step we make is recorded, engraved, stored on the retina of the eye that sees everything, watching in search of suspects, rebels, immigrants, the poor, anyone who might represent a threat to their status quo, for whom only misery, suffering, prison bars and death are reserved.
But we won’t make their task easy, because while they tighten the rope around the neck, we learn ourselves how to undo the knots again and again, until the last walls fall; until the last of these blood-sucking murderers falls, until, one after another, they disappear from the face of the earth without leaving any trace of exploitation, misery and domination anymore; until we are all free, the struggle is the only path.
We want to wish a welcome home the recently released comrades of Operation Pandora, and send a warm solidarity hug to the incarcerated compas Mónica, Francisco, Gabriel, as well as all the rebels kidnapped by the states wherever they are.
So the revolt extends!
Note (translated and slightly adapted from French):
Now 57 years old, José Antúnez Becerra has spent more than 40 years of his life behind bars. He has participated in numerous struggles and revolts on the inside (since the time of the COPEL: Spanish Prisoners in Struggle Coordinating Committee), and was sentenced to an additional 13 years for taking part in the rebellion of Quatre Camins in 2004. After an initial hunger strike last year after which he obtained nothing, he decided on January 23rd 2015 to begin an indefinite hunger strike until his release.
Imprisoned for 11 years, Javier Guerrero Carvajal declared hunger strike since December 12th 2014, and demands the respect of the prison regulations and human rights in the prison of A Lama. On January 5th, he was admitted to the hospital of Pontevedra because of his state of health.
After more than 20 years in the Spanish jails, Xavier Corporales is due to be released on April 14th 2015. On January 2nd 2015, he went on hunger strike to put an end to the FIES (the prisons within the prisons), for the release of prisoners with incurable illnesses, and against the lack of care in the jails. However, due to health problems, he had to end his hunger strike after 20 days.
Since January solidarity with these three prisoners has manifested in various ways in different parts of Spain: painted slogans, banner drops, gatherings, etc.
On February 2nd, anarchists placed a banner in Altsasu (Navarre) to show solidarity with the struggle of Javi Guerrero, Xavier Corporales Berruecos and José Antúnez Becerra. They also gave revolutionary greetings to comrades held hostage by the various states, in Chile (sending courage to the recently convicted Tamara Sol Farías Vergara), Mexico, Greece, Italy, and to Francisco and Mónica, prisoners of the miserable, murderous and torturous Spanish state.
Later in February, anarchists in Zaragoza spray-painted slogans for anarchists implicated in Operation Pandora, and dropped banners to express their solidarity with the two prisoners still on hunger strike, José Antúnez Becerra and Javi Guerrero, “because we want them free and alive.”
In the night of January 30th, 2015, the 7 comrades who were still imprisoned following the arrests on the 16th of December 2014 as part of Operation Pandora were released.
One day before, the instructing judge of the Audiencia Nacional (Madrid) permitted access to the investigative file, and what we know at the moment is what has been circulated through the website of Mossos d’Esquadra in a press communiqué. They are facing charges such as membership in GAC (Coordinated Anarchist Groups), attacks against banks, posting parcel bombs (one to the Archbishop of Pamplona, one to a member of the fascist congregation Legionaries of Christ, and others to Italian companies), while “they are linked”—always according to the police—with the explosive attacks against the Cathedral of Almudena in Madrid (February 7th, 2013) and the Basilica of the Pillar in Zaragoza (October 2nd, 2013), the latter having led to the indictment and pretrial detention of our comrades Mónica and Francisco.
The police statement ends with a victorious “according to the investigators, the structure of the GAC/FAI-FRI is disrupted in Catalonia, the stronghold of this criminal organisation with terrorist purposes against the Spanish State”. What these servants of Power do not recognise (and never will) is that they sought to generate fear to all other comrades with this operation, which not only failed, but we can say without a doubt has generated the opposite effect.
No doubt their release from prison and to receive them amongst us is an opportunity to celebrate, because they are no longer locked up, as much because they are with us again to fight shoulder to shoulder against this world of shit. But it is a “celebration” which remains incomplete. The charges remain, as do the bail conditions—obligation to sign three times a week, passport confiscated, etc. Furthermore Mónica and Francisco are still incarcerated… not to mention all the comrades who risk other prison sentences in other cases, and those who have already been convicted.
If I were to choose a different life I would not change it for anything
I vividly remember the intoxicating feeling that came over me when I began to question authority; I remember the many contradictions and questions. In this discovery of ideas I found many people that made their ideas into material practices in their libraries, publications, social centres, etc. … in their everyday life … they lived the ideas in the here and now. It did not take long for me to want to do the same.
I remember the anxiety I felt when I heard there were comrades incarcerated for putting their ideas of freedom into practice; sisters of ideas in all corners of the world in the jaws of the panoptic beast. That distressing feeling never changed, but is accompanied by gestures of solidarity.
We are many, the anarchists that find ourselves on the other side of the big wall, and after Tuesday, December 16th, our numbers have grown.
The tentacles of Power dropped into anarchist spaces, libertarian social centres, squatted houses and residences of several acratists in Catalonia and Madrid. The hunt captured eleven comrades; of these seven have been kept in prison, accused of belonging to an armed gang terrorist in nature. It is no coincidence that the arrestees are part of my immediate circle; indeed, more than half of them frequently visited me in prison. The judicial-policial gavel has punished solidarity.
I cannot keep silent before such misery; the State’s repressive revenge borders delirium. The information media (spokespeople of dominators) talk about chiefs and subordinates; I stress to them and anyone who harbours any doubts: We are anti-authoritarians; no one is above me, nor am I above anyone!
The spaces attacked in Catalonia were not arbitrarily targeted; firstly, the Kasa de la Muntanya is an important symbol of squatting, and having maintained distance from the capitalist logic for 25 years, they have made their contribution to a great many generations of dissidents to this system of terror. The libertarian social centres and anarchist spaces that were struck never hid their ideals, providing a fertile ground for sowing the seeds of freedom.
The costs in this struggle for the reclamation of our lives are very high; nobody said it would be easy, but undoubtedly if I were to choose a different life I would not change it for anything. In this fight against domination no cages or walls can silence our voices, but without you, comrades, our voices are only transformed in echoes.
If any of you, my beloved comrades recently incarcerated, are ever able to read these words, I tell you that I’m certain you will remain incorruptible and rise to the occasion as you always have.
I remember every time I read or heard that solidarity is a necessary weapon for anarchists. Today, I hope that those memories come true … making our ideas into action.
The morning of Tuesday the 16th of December has surprised us with a wave of house raids and arrests. Surprised us? We are not going to lie. Let’s start again. The morning of the 16th of December has NOT surprised us. The autonomous Catalan police, the Mossos d’Esquadra, and the Guardia Civil and judiciary powers of the Audiencia Nacional stormed more than ten houses and a few anarchist spaces in Barcelona, Sabadell, Manresa and Madrid, with house raids, arrests, confiscation of propaganda material and information, to also use the occasion to enter and plunder, with the entire riot police team of the Mossos d’Esquadra, Kasa de la Muntanya, a squatted place that has existed for 25 years.
According to the media, which as usual are proving their role as police spokespersons, the goal of these arrests is to break up “a criminal organisation with terrorist goals and a violent anarchist character”. Although it seems easy to repeat an often used phrase, we will do it anyway: the only criminal organisation that terrorises people with its violent character is the State and its tentacles: the media, the juridical apparatus, its repressive bodies and its politicians, whatever spectre they belong to.
Why did the repressive action not surprise us? Because we were expecting it.
It is not about pretending to be oracles or something, but about being able of reading between the lines, and sometimes literally, the things that happen. As it happened with the arrests of other comrades last year, since a long time they have been busy orchestrating waves like last Tuesday’s against libertarian and anti-authoritarian milieus, and even though the different razzias weren’t that big they do show a prospect of similar situations.
Operation “Italian style”
Since a few decades the anarchist milieu in neighbouring Italy experiences every now and again, and in the past years with more regularity, macro-operations that are similar to the one on Tuesday. Not only because of the format of the spontaneous razzias and house raids in several houses, also because of the use of names that are easy to remember and carry a certain dark humour, as in this operation, called Pandora because this case, as the media repeats after its juridical sources, “was a box that despite the numerous frights it has given us could not be opened”. By “numerous frights” they refer to several actions that took place throughout the entire terrain of the Spanish State in the past years. To come back to the Italian operations, one only has to remember a few names that came up in the past years, such as Operation Thor, referring to the accusation of a series of attacks with hammers on cash machines and other offices; Operation Ixodidae, referring to the technical name of the family of ticks, as the fascists called the communists and anarchists; and others, such as Ardire, Cervantes, Nottetempo, etcetera.
Apart from the procedure and list of names another factor that reminds us of the neighbouring country is the role of the media, which also helped us to see what was coming. Since three years, or perhaps a little longer, the Spanish media have started a campaign to prepare the ground in such a way that operations like these are not only possible but also predictable. Pointing out milieus, and sometimes even spaces or people with their full names, collectives, etcetera, constructing a fairly bizarre caricature of an internal enemy, is indeed nothing new, although in the last years the focus was on a very specific character: the “violent anarchist”, the “insurrectionalist”, the “against-the-system [antisistema] who infiltrates social movements”, etcetera.
The Chilean fiasco
The year 2010 was a glorious year for the Chilean State. Besides Sebastían Piñera, businessman and fourth richest person in the country, being chosen president, it orchestrated a policial, mediatic and juridical operation against the anti-authoritarian milieu resulting in more than a dozen house raids and arrests, known as Operation Salamandra and popularly known as “Caso Bombas”, as it was based on the investigation of a series of attacks with explosives that took place in the preceding years, and through the police imagery the creation of an hierarchical macro-structure of a supposed network that was responsible for all these explosions: a circus that did not only weaken the reputation of the State, besides the fact of rendering it ridiculous, but that also proved the clumsiness of the investigation procedure, like the falsifying of proof, blackmail or pressurizing in order to obtain informants or “repentants”, chance, etcetera. The process ended with the acquittal of all the accused and a desire for revenge of the Chilean State toward the milieu and those under investigation.
A year after the end of the “Caso Bombas” farce the Spanish and Chilean ministries, judges and cops are working together on a new case, this time on this side of the ocean. Mónica Caballero and Francisco Solar, both ex-suspects in the “Caso Bombas” case, are arrested in Barcelona, where they are living at that moment, suspected of placing an explosive at the Basílica del Pilar in Zaragoza, planning a similar action and belonging to an alleged terrorist organisation. At this moment these comrades are in preventive detention awaiting a trial of which we do not know when it will take place, and we also do not know whether their proceeding will change due to this new repressive wave.
The situation is more or less known to everyone and if we can be sure of one thing it is that the recent arrests serve to give shape to a case that on its own would not stand.
A few hours before the arrests on Tuesday the Spanish government made known, through its media, that “the ministries of Interior Affairs of Spain and Chile are opening a new phase of enforced collaboration in the struggle against anarchist terrorism”. Last Monday, the 15th of December, the Spanish minister of Interior Affairs Jorge Fernández Díaz was in Chile to meet the vice-president and Chilean minister of Interior Affairs Rodrigo Peñailillo in the La Moneda palace, the government seat in Santiago de Chile. “In the struggle against terrorism, Chile will find a solid ally in Spain”, bragged the Spaniard, whilst being decorated with the Grand Cross of the Order of Merit of Chile, “the greatest distinction of the country in civil merit” according to the media, a trophy that the Chilean State in this case handed out for the police work and as a reward for the arrests of comrades Mónica and Francisco last year.
Besides praise and rewards, businessman Fernández sold a bit of his own: policial and juridical training, different kinds of repressive material, etcetera.
And what will come…
What is the next repressive step? We don’t know. At this moment not much is known about how our comrades are doing, of what exactly they are being accused, what repressive means they are subjected to, whether they are in preventive detention or not, etcetera.
What is certain is that this operation is not a fact standing on its own, but another shackle in a chain. A repressive chain that at times is cruel, and at times subtle, in which since the new laws (one only has to think of the recent Mordaza law) several things are incorporated; the hunt on people without papers through every time bigger racist razzias, the police brutality, until the aspiration to manage the misery and administrate the repression, which, all things considered, is what the State does, with a pseudo-left (with Podemos at the lead) that more and more becomes a clearer parody of itself. Evictions, beatings, fascism, juridical and punitive hardening of every kind, nationalist and social-democratic illusions, is what today will bring us. Something worse does not have to be expected, the worst has never left.
The array of opportunities of the Spanish anti-terrorism is a hotchpotch in which everything can be put. It is there, in sight, to remind us that for the State, struggle equals terrorism. It functions as a scarecrow. Do we let ourselves be frightened?
The State and its servants say to have opened Pandora’s box. In Greek mythology Pandora is the equivalent of the Biblical Eve. With the characteristic misogyny of both mythologies, Pandora opens her box as Eve eats her apple, liberating all the evil that it contains.
We are capable of creating our own story and ridding ourselves of their shit mythology. Our history is different. The “box” that this repressive operation has opened urges us to act, to be careful, to be alert in regards to what their next step will be. It makes us think, again and again, of the world we want, and the distance of that world to this one. It makes us see the urgency of acting, of going forward.
The locked up comrades are part of different projects, spaces, collectives, etcetera, and it is very important that these do not decline, that the ruin (in every sense) to which these kind of situations lead does not create powerlessness and a feeling of paralysis.
We always say that “the best solidarity is continuing the struggle”. Right, but what does that mean in practice? We also repeat in unison that “when you touch one of us you touch all of us”. This has become clear through the reactions and protests that took place in several places, just like the unconditional warmth of the comrades on the outside.
We can be certain of one thing, and that is that the locked up comrades can feel this warmth which goes through the iron bars and isolation, because it is the same warmth that they knew to give at other occasions.
In the early morning of October 27th, 2014, the squatted social centre La Gatonera in Madrid was evicted. We send strength to the comrades; nothing is finished.
Below is their communiqué from the day of eviction:
The State orders, the Press targets and the police evicts La Gatonera: this is how this story begins once again, that far from being a novelty, ends up being a suspicious routine. A disgusting routine that, by force of repression and fear, gradually makes an entire movement and a whole history of anarchist struggle get accustomed to having this sensation, which has become way too normalized, in its interior. The importance of so many generations that have striven, each one for years, to demonstrate that another life is possible, that there is an option outside the system in which we live, that they target us because we no longer want to be part of their miseries and because we seek to be able to manage our lives.
By evicting the social centres, they attempt to turn fear into the only outlet, paralyze the struggles that go to the root of the problem, normalize repression and make those who struggle assimilate it, thus offering a recuperative and totally controlled option such as the institutionalization of all kinds of struggle so they won’t get out of their hand, either with the formation of new political parties of the Left, the cession of spaces, or the negotiation with any type of institution. We can only draw a conclusion from this: the legal struggle has no effect; otherwise it wouldn’t be legal.
However, they have not realized that there are still people willing to go a step further, people who won’t leave this situation alone, either because of personal dignity or because of collective solidarity. The eviction of La Gatonera was nothing more than the closure and demolition of a building, but that building was made up of the people who turned it into an anarchist space, a tool of struggle, complicity, encounter, gathering and creation of new relationships.
They evicted us from the building located in Amistad street, but they haven’t even remotely achieved their goal: to scare us.
We want to be clear on this and make them understand it: this is not the end of anything, it’s the continuation of a seven-year project that will be carried out wherever, however and whenever we decide.
At the same time we are aware that, even though this is part of a wider plan against social centres in general, the eviction of La Gatonera did not occur by chance. We stood firm on previous occasions, not giving in to blackmail and trying to remain as faithful as possible to our ideas. We received both eviction and personal threats, our social centre was boycotted on several occasions, not to mention the mishaps we had with the forces of order from time to time. We did not resort to complaints, victimisms or formalisms. Our way of confronting matters has been to continue on our line that, at the end of the day, has brought us to this terminus. We proudly assume the consequences, because all this tells us that we’re causing them trouble, and so we are on the right track.
This has only just begun. They have ignited a spark that will help us take the struggle to the next level with more passion than ever before and much more firmness and rage.
To those who have stood in solidarity with us, when it was needed, we say we feel very proud of all of you. All those who have made La Gatonera possible, those who have preserved the essence of the space, and those with whom we’ve worked so hard together.
The response we see as coherent is to continue the struggle, visualizing this response as one sees fit, maintaining the original idea La Gatonera has always tried to fulfill: the decentralization of neighbourhoods and direct action.
Letter of comrade José Miguel Sánchez Jiménez for the info event which took place on January 11, 2014 in the squat La Gatonera, in solidarity with long-term anarchist prisoners
Brothers and sisters in struggle in Madrid, Spain.
Thinking of the distance that these words will make until they reach you, bringing with them a cry of total emancipation across the globe, I greet every single one of you with my fist raised, to the sound of the revolt, appreciating wholeheartedly the activity held for prisoners serving long sentences, a gesture that revitalizes to continue battling against the prison society and confront Power in all its facets.
In reality I do not know how to start this letter to you; I could not even sleep well these past few days… it must be due to the anxiety I feel for getting closer to the date of completing my conviction (February 27, 2014). I look back and relive beatings, tortures, riots, prison violence, and so on. During the 20 years of my captivity, this has been the constant, and I resisted and gave the battle… and here I am, reminiscing, thinking of so many comrades who will remain incarcerated, and I am filled with sadness to know they will continue to be part of the prison society, a beast whose jaws are eager to devour and subdue warriors.
My thoughts are with all those who will stay in prison, the brothers and sisters in struggle against Power. I send to them all of my affection, strength, courage and respect, reminding them that they will never be alone; our struggle will be their companion and our blows an inducement that will accompany them throughout their incarceration. The commitment that I make to them, before you, is to not let a single day pass without fighting for the destruction of the prison society, not let a single day pass without attacking Power by all means, yet never making truces or compromises.
During my obligatory time in prison, I got to know many penal institutions of this mediocre country called $hile. In every prison, a different system of domination, where you’ll never find a rich person, only poor people, a true mirror of external reality; where state violence stands out in all its rawness, where the prisoner is just another subordinate, where the beatings by prison guards are daily bread and butter… fuck this shit.
Thus, thinking of so many walls and bars, these lines have manifested themselves in this paper, devoting these moments to you, to those who make us feel the fire of rebellion in action through this gesture of solidarity with long-term prisoners. To every brother and sister who hears these words, to you a fraternal embrace, revolutionary affection and a battle cry against everything that’s established.
Having the revolt on the brain.
José Miguel Sánchez Jiménez.
January 10, 2014.
Ex Penitenciaría of Santiago – Calle 9
PS. My greetings, affection, respect and strength to my little brother Francisco Solar (Panchito), Mónica Caballero and all those who are incarcerated in Spain and the whole world.
For the destruction of the prison society For total emancipation
On Saturday, January 11th, the squatted social centre La Gatonera, located on 9, Amistad Street in the district of Carabanchel, Madrid, hosts an info event in solidarity with anarchist prisoners facing long sentences worldwide.
We meet at 18:30 and begin counter-information talk, with the aim to publicize some of the cases of brothers and sisters who are incarcerated in the democratic dungeons of different States for many years already. Following a presentation of the cases of Claudio Lavazza and Gabriel Pombo Da Silva (prisoners in the Spanish State), Marco Camenisch (imprisoned in Switzerland), Thomas Meyer-Falk (captive in Germany), Marie Mason and Eric McDavid (imprisoned in the United States), and José Miguel Sánchez Jiménez (prisoner in Chile), we freely discuss ways to strengthen and extend solidarity ties, also through structures of counter-information and factual support, with prisoners of social war.
The evening includes solidarity cafeta, with vegan sandwiches to kill hunger.
We want to make this meeting an opportunity to break the silence in which they try to bury anarchist prisoners, to diffuse their words, and propagate the fight with all means possible against the prison society and those who sustain it.
By the way, this is a self-organized event so we hope we can count on your support, both in terms of physical presence and active participation, as well as free donation for imprisoned comrades.
Prisoners to the streets! Streets for the insurrection!
On the night from 25 to 26 November 2013, we attacked the Santander Bank located on Frankfurter Allee in Friedrichshain, Berlin. This action intended to send solidarity greetings to the 5 anarchists in Spain who are suspected to have attacked a church.
We chose the Santander Bank because it is one of the largest banks of Spain, and because the same bank is hugely profiteering from the inmates in Spanish prisons. So, all the money of prisoners is administered by Santander, which naturally provides for particularly fucked up terms and conditions.
Another reason for our choice lies in the fact that Santander Bank invests eagerly in prison construction across Latin America.
We consider this attack as an early contribution to the international solidarity action week from 16 to 22 December 2013.
Furthermore, we send a warm hug to the five people in Spain and all others that do not give up their rebellious stance in everyday life.
As anarchists we are in constant confrontation with the State/Capital in all its manifestations; this is a no-brainer. But sometimes, especially when Power falls down on us in all its brutality, glances get confused making strides towards ambiguous and unclear positions. I believe it’s necessary to maintain consistency, and not give rise to victimizing and defeatist discourses or practices. Perhaps now we should take a step back, but always to make five steps forward on the enticing pathway of incertitude to total liberation.
A strong embrace to all anarchist prisoners, held in prison worldwide, especially to Juan Aliste, Marcelo Villarroel and José Miguel Sánchez, with whom I had the opportunity to share experiences on the inside (in Chile).
Uncertain of what will come, yet unhesitating against Power
On Thursday, November 28th, at 6am, plainclothes cops from the Information Brigade of the Spanish National Police launched a large-scale operation against activists from various different collectives, under the orders of Cristina Cifuentes, a politician of the ruling right-wing Partido Popular (People’s Party), and current central government delegate in Madrid. The police claimed to have opened an investigation in relation to an antifascist direct action that took place on November 20th in the Complutense University of Madrid. As a result of this repressive blow, 19 individuals were arrested on November 28th, and another one on the 30th (still in custody); the investigation is currently underway, so there is always the threat of further persecutions.
On Thursday evening, the gathering in solidarity with the 19 arrestees outside the Moratalaz police station was attacked by cops, who carried out numerous ID checks and then unleashed crackdown on protesters for several hours, as a result of which 11 more people were detained, and released only the following morning.
During the evening of Friday, November 29th, the 19 arrestees of 28/11 were brought before the prosecutor in the Plaza de Castilla court, and were all released pending charges. A diverse crowd welcomed the prosecuted activists there, chanting solidarity slogans like “Freedom for those detained for fighting.” Another solidarity gathering was called for Sunday, December 1st, at 12pm in Tirso de Molina square in downtown Madrid.
The prosecuted have been charged with offenses against the exercise of fundamental rights and public liberties, with the aggravating factor of acting in hatred, causing injuries and damages. They are mainly accused of an antifascist direct action that took place on November 20th, date when fascists commemorate the anniversary of Franco’s death and the execution of José Antonio Primo de Rivera, founder of the Falange (the “Spanish Phalanx” nationalist party). Just like every year, on the same day several antifascist collectives held a counter-demo in the Complutense University of Madrid, under the slogan “Fascists out of the University”. The protest march moved through the campus and ended in front of the Law School, where an attack was carried out against the offices of the fascist association Foro Universitario Francisco de Vitoria. Members of this fascist student organization, who showed up their faces, received proper welcome. Later on, the scum went straight to the cops to report the attack.
It is worth mentioning that, on November 4th in the School of History of the Complutense University of Madrid, a bunch of neo-Nazis of the Liga Joven (Youth League) broke into the university premises, tore off posters and confronted several students, in retaliation to the execution of two Golden Dawn thugs in Athens (November 1st, 2013).
On November 24th, several compañerxs unfolded a banner from the top of the Berlin Cathedral, which read “Solidarity with the 5 anarch@s from Barcelona – Freedom for all” referring to Gerardo, Rocío, Valeria, Mónica and Francisco, who were arrested in Barcelona on November 13th, 2013. The comrades are accused under anti-terror law of an attack on a fascist church monument, the Basilica del Pilar in Zaragoza, Spain. A German summary from this text was also distributed as flyer during the action.
Here are the current prison addresses to contact Mónica and Francisco, who are held in pretrial detention at prisons in Madrid. Both are held under the FIES regime, so all letters sent to (and from) them are checked by prison staff. Write to the comrades to break isolation!
On November 18th some members of Contra Info hung a banner at Exarchia square in downtown Athens, in solidarity with the 5 comrades arrested in Barcelona on November 13th, accused under the anti-terror law for direct actions vindicated by the Insurrectional Commando Mateo Morral. The banner reads: “Freedom for the 5 comrades arrested on 13/11 in Barcelona: Rocío, Valeria, Mónica, Francisco, Gerardo – Solidarity and action beyond borders!”
The comrades were transferred from Barcelona to Madrid, where they were held for four more days in isolation. Finally on Sunday, November 17th, they were brought before the judge in Madrid.
All 5 anarchists are currently hostages of the Spanish State: Rocío Yune, Valeria Giacomoni and Gerardo Formoso were released, but they have pending charges and restrictive conditions, while their passports were taken away; Mónica Caballero and Francisco Solar were remanded to prison without bail.
From the trench of counter-information we send all our strength to the 5 prosecuted comrades, and we call for the multiplication of factual solidarity gestures. Faced with the police, interstate and media repression, we are not willing to make even a single step back.
On October 2nd, 2013 the anarchist group “Insurrectional Commando Mateo Morral” installed an explosive device at an infamous fascist church monument, the Basilica of the Pillar in Zaragoza, Spain. This cathedral is one of the most significant temples for the holders of Power, and stands as one of the main symbols of, and a meeting point for, fascism. This action did not intend to harm any parishioners or tourists; the group gave advance warning to the Basilica of the Pillar authorities as well as to newspapers.
On November 13th, 2013 the cops invaded an apartment and conducted an anti-terrorist operation in the city of Barcelona; five individuals (from Chile, Argentina and Italy) were arrested, accused of the action claimed by the Insurrectional Commando Mateo Morral. We are awaiting updates on the condition of the five arrestees, among whom are Mónica Caballero and Francisco Solar, anarchists from Chile who were prosecuted and detained in the recent past for the “Caso Bombas”, a judicial fiasco of the Chilean State, for which they were fully acquitted from all charges in 2012. The poster reads:
“Solidarity and Action with the arrested comrades in Barcelona.
No State, no border will ever be able to halt social war.
May distance get smaller with gestures of solidarity.
May attacks against Power multiply day by day.
Immediate release of Mónica and Francisco!
Prisoners of war out onto the streets!”
“Extending the bonds of solidarity . . .
Mónica and Francisco were arrested in August 2010 in the so-called Bombs Case. Both faced the proceeding against them with dignity and rebellion, stayed more than 9 months in prison in high and maximum security regimes, refused to accept the prosecutor’s blackmail, carried out a hunger strike alongside the rest of co-accused which lasted over 65 days, confronted one of the longest trials in Chile, and had all their charges dropped with their convictions intact. The police and media accusations that the comrades face today are based on the judicial files of the Bombs Case, a raid that was unleashed against acratist spaces, milieus and individualities. Now the powerful seek to resurrect the Bombs Case corpse, threatening to open new proceedings against us; faced with this, we make it clear that we reject the accusation, but we do not deny who we are, our ideas, our relationships, our past, present and future in the struggle. . . .
Mónica and Francisco are our comrades and we defend them against the media and police campaigns conducted by both the Spanish and the Chilean State.
Because all States are terrorists and all prisons are extermination centres.
Revolutionary solidarity beyond all borders.”
All five of the arrested comrades were supposed to appear before the judge in Madrid on November 15th, but the police extended their incommunicado detention until Sunday (17/11).