Thursday, 31 December 2009

Afghan resistance kills CIA agents

A SPECTACULAR blow has been struck by the Afghan resistance against the US occupying forces in the final days of 2009.

Reported "More details have emerged in this morning’s perplexing story, in which a suicide bomber attacked what officials called a 'gym' on a military base in Khost Province, killing eight Americans the military identified as 'civilians.'

"Now US officials admit that all eight Americans slain in the attack were actually CIA agents, adding a reason why the Haqqani network was so quickly blamed, as CIA drones have been bombing the Haqqanis in North Waziristan for over a year.

"Moreover, the 'gym' at the Forward Operating Base was actually being used as a CIA 'operations and surveillance center,' explaining the conspicuous lack of military personnel harmed in the attack.

"One former CIA official was quoted as saying the attack was 'the nightmare we’ve been anticipating since we went into Afghanistan and Iraq,' adding that the CIA agents operating in the warzones often lack adequate protection.

"Exactly how the bomber was able to infiltrate the base and reach a secret CIA facility was unclear, and some suggested that the attacker may have been affiliated with one of the Afghan groups working on the base.

"In addition, five Canadians were killed on patrol in Kandahar Province. The five, four soldiers and an embedded reporter were killed when their armored vehicle hit a roadside bomb.

"Finally, though details were not readily available, a Jordanian army captain was slain in Afghanistan, the first death among Jordan’s tiny Afghan contingent since the war began."

Wednesday, 30 December 2009

US plans attack on Yemen

THE US military machine is gearing up to launch a new attack on rebels in Yemen, suggest media reports.

The immediate pretext for the stepping-up of military involvement is the botched bombing attempt on the Delta Airlines flight on Christmas Day that al Qaeda in Yemen claims it organized.

But this attempt has itself been described as a retaliation for recent secret US military involvement in the volatile and strategically crucial Arab state.

American TV news channel CNN reported that two senior U.S. officials told them that the US and Yemen are now looking at fresh targets in Yemen for a potential "retaliation" strike.

It said: "The officials asked not to be not be identified because of the sensitive nature of the information. They both stressed the effort is aimed at being ready with options for the White House if President Obama orders a retaliatory strike. The effort is to see whether targets can be specifically linked to the airliner incident and its planning.

"U.S. special operations forces and intelligence agencies, and their Yemeni counterparts, are working to identify potential al Qaeda targets in Yemen, one of the officials said. This is part of a new classified agreement with the Yemeni government that the two countries will work together and that the U.S. will remain publicly silent on its role in providing intelligence and weapons to conduct strikes.

"Officially the U.S. has not said it conducted previous airstrikes in Yemen, but officials are privately saying the Yemeni military could not have carried out the strikes on its own.

"By all accounts, the agreement would allow the U.S. to fly cruise missiles, fighter jets or unmanned armed drones against targets in Yemen with the consent of that government."

Tuesday, 29 December 2009

Greek insurgents bomb bank

GREEK insurgents have carried out a bomb attack on a financial institution in Athens.

Reports After the Greek Riots: "On Monday night, the group conspiracy of cells of fire posted a communique on Athens Indymedia (greek original here) claiming Sunday night’s attack on the national bank and insurance agency on Sygrou Avenue in Athens.

"The explosion was very strong, marking an upgrading in the group’s capacities – as they themselves note in the communique.

"They send 'comradely greetings' to anarchist bank robber and prisoner Yiannis Dimitrakis, to Chilean anarchists Freddy Fuentevilla and Marcelo Villaruel, to Gabriel Pompo da Silva (who went on hunger strike on December 20 in the prison of Aachen, Germany) as well as Ilias Nikolaou, Polykarops Georgiadis (another two anarchist prisoners in Greece) and finally, Charis Chatzimichelakis and Panayiotis Masouras, as well as the third person in pre-trial detention in connection to the conspiracy of cells of fire case, who they name by initials only."

Corporate media have preferred to name the insurance offices as the target of the attack, perhaps to dampen public sympathy, but, as Reuters India reports, National Insurance is a subsidiary of National Bank, the country's biggest lender.

Thursday, 24 December 2009

British police flee snowballs

TWO British police officers were forced to cower in their patrol car after they were surrounded by around 100 teenagers who pelted their vehicle with snowballs.

Reported The Daily Telegraph on December 24: "The gang shouted 'who are ya' and 'got 'em' as they rained the missiles down on the officers' car.

"One of the officers was seen racing to the vehicle and quickly closing the door before the two-minute attack began.

"Hundreds of snowballs were thrown at the vehicle before the officers decided to flee the country park in Crawley, West Sussex.

"They switched on the vehicle's blue flashing lights as they made their hasty exit.

"As the police car – which was marked Crawley Borough – left the car park, the youths continued to bombard the windscreen, windows and panels with snowballs.

"The attack was captured by one of the gang on a mobile phone and posted on YouTube, the video sharing website, where it has been viewed hundreds of times. "

The videos can be seen here and here.

Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, 23 December 2009

Colombian poor occupy state office

MORE than 5,000 indigenous, AfroColombian and farming community members are occupying the community center of Piñuña Negro (pictured above) in the department of Putumayo, Colombia, reports Narco News.

They are calling for an end to the US-backed Plan Colombia and the triple threat of military and paramilitary repression and cocoa eradication programmes.

Says the site: "Using tactics of nonviolent resistance, a crowd of all ages has gathered at the highest government office in the area—the Police Inspector’s office—to demand negotiations with local and national government representatives.

"The affected communities say that after three years of unfulfilled promises and unanswered calls for dialogue, there have been no lasting efforts by the government to develop replacement crops, markets and the infrastructure to get crops to markets.

"Instead, community leaders and residents are being falsely accused of being operatives of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia-FARC) and subjected to ongoing repression.

"With no means to earn a livelihood, rural communities are enduring widespread malnutrition, disease and lack of educational or economic opportunity.

"The local population has been subjected to rampant abuses by the military, including unprovoked and random armed assaults against civilian populations, the forced procurement of crops and other resources, occupation of homes and farms and a military blockade prohibiting the entry of food and other daily necessities into the area.

"Paramilitary death squads have operated with impunity, threatening the population and, worse, committing assassinations and other acts of violence. "

The occupation is calling for:

· An end to coca eradications in Putumayo until authorities have negotiated and enacted a plan with Colombian authorities that includes an adequate and just crop replacement component;

· A guarantee of safety for protest leaders and community negotiators;

· An end to Plan Colombia and the triple threat of military and paramilitary repression and eradication programs that are the root causes of displacement of indigenous, AfroColombian and farming communities.

Tuesday, 22 December 2009

Bankers alarmed at anarchist resurgence

NEO-LIBERALS are scared that a growing anarchist movement in Europe will thwart their economic plans for the continent.

That is the opinion of Ambrose Evans-Pritchard, international business editor of the right-wing Daily Telegraph in London.

Says his December 20 article: "It is becoming dangerous to associate with economic and ideological power in Southern Europe, or what Europol calls the 'Mediterranean triangle' of anarchist violence."

He explained: "Southern Europe is being ordered to carry out IMF-style austerity, without the IMF-style devaluation required to rectify the massive imbalances that have built up between North and South under the euro. The victims are caught like France and Germany under the Gold Standard of the early 1930s, when society was broken on a wheel of deflation decrees. "

Listing examples of what he calls a "hard-Left resurgence", he records that Greece's Revolutionary Struggle detonated a car bomb at the Athens Stock Exchange in September and Citigroup's branches have been targeted twice this year.

In Milan, the Informal Anarchist Federation (FAI) planted 2kg of dynamite last week at Bocconi University, the symbol of the free market in Italy.

The FAI left a note threatening a "bloodbath" for capitalists. Security forces have issued alerts for the Milan bourse, Unicredit, and Barclays. Italians have begun to ask whether their country is returning to the 1970s, the "years of lead" when the Red Brigades murdered ex-premier Aldo Moro.

He adds: "The FAI is no friend of Europe either. It sent letter bombs earlier this decade to the heads of the Commission and the European Central Bank and to the European Parliament.
In Spain, Barcelona's anarchists have been conducting a low-level campaign against bank cash machines, supermarkets, and firms such as Manpower. Valencia and Galicia have seen a wave of attacks. "

And he quotes Europol as saying: "Activities by left-wing and anarchist terrorists and extremists are increasing in quantity and geographical spread in the EU."

Monday, 21 December 2009

Chavez warns of US-Dutch attack

THE USA and the Netherlands are planning military aggression against Venezuela from the Dutch Antilles, Hugo Chavez has warned.

The Venezuelan leader was speaking at a meeting with trade unions, political organizations, and social movement leaders in Copenhagen, reports Venezuela Analysis.

Said Chavez: “I am accusing the Kingdom of the Netherlands together with the Yankee empire of preparing a military aggression against Venezuela.

“The islands of Aruba and Curacao, both of which belong to the Kingdom of the Netherlands, have permitted the installation of United States military equipment on their soil, placing Venezuela under the watch of the United States,” Chavez explained.

“It would be good for Europe to know that the North American empire is arming these islands Aruba and Curacao to the teeth, filling them with war planes, war ships, and CIA spies.”

“Since the Kingdom of the Netherlands is a member of the European Union, I would like to see what the European Union has to say about this,” Chavez declared.

He stressed that the U.S. military presence in the Dutch Antilles, which are located approximately one hundred kilometers off the Venezuelan coast, is only part of broader U.S. strategy to expand its military power in Latin America in order to crush the rise of anti-US governments in the region.

Last year, the U.S. military re-activated the Fourth Naval Fleet of its Southern Command. In October of this year it signed a military pact to use seven Colombian military bases as a launching pad for “full spectrum operations” across the South American continent, according to U.S. Air Force budgetary documents.

“This new Yankee military deployment that is now in full scale development threatens not only Venezuela,” but also other countries whose governments openly support socialism and are members of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Americas (ALBA), Chavez said.

Several of the nine ALBA member countries, including Ecuador, Cuba, Nicaragua, and Bolivia, sent representatives to Thursday’s meeting with social movements in Copenhagen as well.

Chile - attack on thermoelectric plant

A HOMEMADE explosive device went off early on Saturday morning on the outskirts of the Colbún thermoelectric plant located alongside Route 160 in Concepción, Chile, report Liberacion Total and this is our job.

Said the sites: "The explosion happened at around midnight, and it affected a security post housing a water meter located more than 200 meters from the plant entrance. The explosion also destroyed a water conduit valve.

"Upon hearing the explosion, company security guards alerted the Carabineros, who turned to GOPE personnel in order to investigate the situation.

"The tyrants confirmed the presence of an explosive device, adding that they found black powder residue, which had been detonated with a slow-burning fuse at the scene."

There is another Spanish-langauge report here.

Saturday, 19 December 2009

Naxalite rebels hit back at oppressors

NAXALITE rebels in India have hit back at reactionary state communists involved in brutal attempts to crush their peasant uprising.

The Times of India reports today that the People’s Committee against Police Atrocities "ran amok in many places in Jangalmahal with its militia squad killing four CPM [Communist Party of India - Marxist] cadres and setting several vehicles and three oil tankers on fire".

The report adds: "They also set a sponge iron factory and a forest beat office ablaze.

"On Thursday night, suspected Maoists dragged two CPM cadres — Anil Chalak and Dayal Chalak — from Bandhgora in Jhargram and hacked them to death.

"Police found their bodies on Friday morning. A CPM leader escaped with injuries. Also on Thursday, Maoists beat a CPM supporter at Dherua in Kotwali."

The CPM, a leading part of the government in West Bengal, has for many years been involved in brutal repression of radical opponents and villagers trying to defend their rights, happy to brand whole rural communities as "Maoist" as a pretext for mass arrests and killings.

Naxalites are active across approximately 220 districts in twenty states of India, accounting for about 40 percent of India's geographical area, according to Wikipedia.

They are especially concentrated in an area known as the "Red corridor", where they control 92,000 square kilometers.

According to India's intelligence agency, the Research and Analysis Wing, 20,000 armed cadre Naxalites were operating apart from 50,000 regular cadres working in their various mass organizations and millions of sympathisers, and their growing influence prompted Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to declare them as the most serious internal threat to India's national security.

The Naxalites are, needless to say, opposed by virtually all mainstream Indian political groups.

Thursday, 17 December 2009

Resistance spreads across Greece

RESISTANCE to the neo-liberal junta in Greece is spreading beyond the big cities.

Report Associated Press today: "Greek police say a group of suspected anarchist youths has attacked bank branches in the northern town of Kavala with sledgehammers and petrol bombs.

"Some 15 hooded youths smashed the glass fronts of an Alpha Bank and Bank of Cyprus branch late Wednesday and threw in petrol bombs, police said. Another two banks had their windows smashed.

"All four banks had closed for business hours earlier, and no injuries or arrests were reported. The extent of the damage was not immediately clear. Kavala is some 100 miles (170 kilometers) east of Thessaloniki.

"Greek anarchists frequently firebomb symbols of wealth and authority, but attacks by groups of youths on the street are rare outside the country's two main cities. "
This photo was published by the Greek site Sportime.

Wednesday, 16 December 2009

Copenhagen - the system is exposed for what it is

THE true, brutal, face of the global capitalist system has been revealed at Copenhagen this week.

All the talk about involving the public in a worldwide effort to combat climate change has been revealed as nothing but a sick lie.

Inside the conference centre the leaders of the powerful elite stitch up a deal with representatives of the corporations to whom they ultimately owe their allegiances, while developing countries are marginalised and environmentalists denied access.

Reported the BBC: "Those unable to take part on Wednesday included campaign group Friends of the Earth. It said its delegates had arrived at the centre to find their badges were no longer valid. "

Outside in the streets, the gloves are off. The usual 'democratic' facade has been removed and police use tear gas, brute force, mass 'preventative' arrests and anything else to crush any sign of dissent to their failing and corrupt world order.

A Times reporter who was trapped with a group of around 2,000 protesters in a police tactic known as "kettling" said that officers were charging demonstrators and using pepper spray to break them up.

Said the newspaper: "Danish police have arrested hundreds of people over the past week and have been accused of being unnecessarily heavy-handed.

"As the demonstrators arrived today, large numbers of police were waiting for them, many with dogs on leashes, and a police helicopter circled overhead. The police were also using plain-clothed officers to infiltrate the protests, grabbing individual protesters and bundling them into police vans. "

All this must have come as a shock to many of the protesters who have flocked to Denmark for the summit.

Certain climate change protesters have the reputation of a somewhat naive attitude to policing, perhaps because of their young age and social background.

All that will have changed now. By striking out so thuggishly at peaceful dissent on the streets, the system could be forging a whole new generation of serious long-term insurgents.

Tuesday, 15 December 2009

Danish police step up attacks

DANISH police are continuing to use force to attack protesters gathered in Copenhagen for the climate change summit.

Following assaults on demonstrations and mass arrests, they have now seized the opportunity to move into the free space of Christiana, though meeting spirited resistance.

Said one correspondent on Indymedia: "Police are blocking all access roads to Christiania and unconfirmed reports have been heard of activists throwing bottles at them as the authorities show up at a party in preparation for the Reclaim Power action on Wednesday.

"I have witnessed a large police presence ariving at Christiania in Copenhagen on the night of the party two days before the Reclaim Power action which will attempt to force its way into the Bella Center to declare a people's summit.

"A large contingent of riot police screeched to a halt at street corners and baracaded the entrance roads to the site of the squatted free-town.

"I have also heard unconfirmed eye-witness reports of activists responding by throwing bottles at the riot police and I saw plumes of smoke present in the street in front of the event. "

Monday, 14 December 2009

Cracks appear in 'special relationship'

THERE are interesting signs that parts of the British establishment are finally rebelling against remote control from the USA.

In an article in The Times today, Sir Ken Macdonald, director of public prosecutions between 2003 and 2008, says former PM Tony Blair misled and cajoled the British people into a war they didn't want.

He writes: "The degree of deceit involved in our decision to go to war on Iraq becomes steadily clearer.

"This was a foreign policy disgrace of epic proportions and playing footsie on Sunday morning television does nothing to repair the damage.

"It is now very difficult to avoid the conclusion that Tony Blair engaged in an alarming subterfuge with his partner George Bush and went on to mislead and cajole the British people into a deadly war they had made perfectly clear they didn’t want, and on a basis that it’s increasingly hard to believe even he found truly credible."

He adds: "Hindsight is a great temptress. But we needn’t trouble her on the way to a confident conclusion that Mr Blair’s fundamental flaw was his sycophancy towards power.

"Perhaps this seems odd in a man who drank so much of that mind-altering brew at home. But Washington turned his head and he couldn’t resist the stage or the glamour that it gave him."

The extent of US control of leading British politicians remains a taboo subject on the UK political scene, although aired in a fictional form in Robert Harris's novel The Ghost, due to be made into a film by Roman Polanski.

And while today's attack on Blair presents the problem as personal rather than systematic, the fallout from the Iraq war may well open larger cracks in the post-WW2 transatlantic "special relationship".

Saturday, 12 December 2009

Squatters battle police in Turin

POLICE in Turin used armoured cars and brutal methods to clear radical squats on Thursday, it has been reported.

In response a major protest in defence of free spaces has been called for Saturday 19th December at 2pm in front of Torino Porta Susa Train Station.

A report posted on Indymedia described how people blocked the streets in solidarity, stopping the cherry-pickers from getting in, leading to police charges which eventually involved tear gas.

It added: "The protestors resist a little and then disperse, with one arrest, and there is some rioting in the surrounding streets.

"After having cleared all watchful eyes from the area, the forces of order go on to take revenge on the protesters' cars (searching them and ripping off windshield wipers) and sound-systems and mini-kitchens set up for the event are taken to the dump at Via dall'Amiat. Then the eviction begins.

"The infamous cops reach the roof of L'ostile and take down 3 of the 6 who are resisting there; shortly after they pull the remaining three down by force. The radio is talking about burning wheelie-bins in the surrounding streets.

"The cops charge in Piaza Crispi again, with greater presence, shooting tear gas at head hight; after the charge, morale is still high and people are still massing in Piaza Crispi. They block the junction; the charges and counter charges continue, and the cops are now supported by armoured vehicles that are not moving, for now.

"Two people are wounded (a broken finger for one, a boot in the face for another) and two arrested. Taking advantage of the police charge, a van speeds away to take the folks from L'ostile to the police station in Via Tirreno."

Thursday, 10 December 2009

Greece - down with the junta!

AN URGENT statement has been released by Greek radicals, describing the way their country has been taken over by a de facto military/police junta under the guise of a "socialist" government.

Here is the translation as posted on Indymedia.


1) Cops with guns in the demonstrations

2) Motorbike raids against protesters

3) Cops following peaceful demonstrators in their tracks, wild and indiscriminate arrests

4) Staged events such as the alleged assassination attempt against the rector of the Pritanea

5) An enormous number of vague and even criminal charges and arresting people young and old

6) Closing schools on the pretext of swine flu and the merciless beating of students who wanted to get to their schools

7) Undercover cops kidnapping young protesters

8) Higher level visible collaboration between Golden Dawn neo-nazis and the Police

9) Secret meetings between Chrysohoides and the bosses of the TV channels and journalists to decide on how TV reporting was going to be done over these days

10) Secret covert cameras and helicopters hovering constantly

11) Zero tolerance makes a bitter orange and a stone against a bank a felony and a pretext for a police attack

12) BAN on demonstrations and political gatherings in the conversion areas with massive police intimidation and outrageous filing

13) Hacker attacks on indymedia, and sites of squatted places and TVXS (no borders TV), deleting comments

14) Invasion and PREVENTIVE ARRESTS in many self-managed spaces.

15) In an Orwellian way anarchists and the rebels are referred to "fascists and Nazis!".

16) Junta-like removal of asylum [in the universities] AND HOW MUCH MORE!

Some of these things happened in isolation, and some only happened before under the junta in 1967-1974; others have never happened before, only now. They never ever happened altogether in such a short space of time!

It seems that the crash which happened here and they are hiding, like the indomitable December, has the power to activate an emergency plan, a new ‘PLASTER CAST’. [repeating the pronuncement of the junta in 1967]

These moments are more than historical. We are witnessing for the first time since 1967 an attempt to impose a fascist police coup. If a parliamentary democracy are able to commit those crimes, the junta is something different and we have all have begun to understand that.

The anarchist slogans in the streets are beginning to say bluntly: "DOWN THE JUNTA" A collusion of prosecutors, rectors, the upper classes, TV media and police, and still we do not know what other local and foreign forces have been mustered. You hear of missing people. The climate is heavy like unde the junta.


Tuesday, 8 December 2009

Indonesia - thousands march against corruption

ANTI-CORRUPTION protesters have taken to the streets of Indonesia despite a threatening police presence.

Reported the Irrawaddy website: "Thousands of people gathered at rallies throughout Indonesia on Wednesday to demand government action to end widespread corruption among politicians, police and other public officials.

"More than a dozen rallies—an annual event in this Muslim-dominated nation to mark International Anti-Corruption Day—were planned for the national capital of Jakarta and several of Indonesia's other larger cities.

"The palace of President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono—who is under pressure to act after winning re-election in July on promises of stamping out graft—was to be the site of a large protest later in the day, protest organizer Usman Hamid said. Hundreds of anti-riot police personnel were stationed outside his palace, backed up by two water cannons."

The previous day the president had warned that unnamed forces could hijack the rally to topple him.

"There will be 10,000 police personnel deployed tomorrow in several spots that will be passed by demonstrators," Jakarta police spokesman Boy Rafli told AFP.

Monday, 7 December 2009

Greece - oppression without precedent

RESISTANCE continues on the streets of Greece, despite massive and vicious police repression.

Reported the Occupied London blog, live from Athens: "The oppression has no precedent. The state is clearly trying to terrorize the population, but until now the only thing that they achieve is to make everybody angry, and more people come out to the streets. The streets will will, or else the terror will win..."

It is clear that it is not just the Greek state that has a vested interest in propping up the corrupt capitalist system there and preventing real change after the cosmetic hand-over of power to the so-called "socialists".

The UK has already sent Scotland Yard officers to Athens to help fight the popular uprising on behalf of the global elite.

Said an anlaytical report on "U.K. anti-terrorism officials are concerned that the next step in the year-long campaign of violence is for guerrilla groups to target foreign nationals in copycat assassinations of the type practiced by the now-defunct November 17 terrorist group. In October, unknown gunmen opened fire on a police station, injuring six officers and seriously testing the new government."

It quoted a Greek security expert as saying: “The British are more interested in preventing a new terrorist problem from gaining strength because they don’t want to get to the point where these groups move from bombings to assassinations.”

And it added: "Greece is a point of particular concern for European intelligence organizations. Aside from being the exposed southeastern flank of the European Union, it has a past of inspiring European leftism. The 1965 riots in Greece, known as the "Iouliana", were stomped out domestically but inspired the events of 1968 in western Europe."

On Monday more demonstrations took place all over the country. In Thessaloniki the turnout was even bigger then the previous day, estimated at 8,000-10,000.

Reported ABC News: "Riot police clashed with stone-throwing youths in Athens as violence marred a second day of demonstrations held to mark the fatal shooting of a teenager by police a year ago.

"Police charged the crowd with tear gas and made nine arrests after several hundred youths, some as young as 12, hurled stones at store windows and the security forces as some 5,000 demonstrators set off towards parliament.

"Another two youths were arrested for pelting a police station with stones as thousands of students rallied to pay tribute to Alexis Grigoropoulos, who was shot dead at age 15 during mass youth riots last year, a police source said.

Sunday, 6 December 2009

Riots in Athens after cops attack march

RIOTS broke out in Athens today after police attacked the demonstration marking the anniversary of the murder of Alexis Grigoropoulos by armed cops.

An eye-witness report said: "Today’s demonstration had around 15,000 people, met by around 10,000 cops on the streets. The demonstration was attacked only a few minutes after it started: Two eye-witnesses from Occupied London saw at least ten unprovoked arrests right the spot, on the corners of Panepistimiou Avenue and Ippokratous Street.

"In Exarcheia, riot police swept through the square. Around 100 of us tried to find refuge in the building of the Migrants’ Haunt on Tsamadou street. The pigs in uniform stood outside the building, tear-gassing through the windows and doors. Tear-gassing in an indoors space is, of course, potentially murderous attack."

In Thessaloniki, Greece's second-largest city, demonstrators threw petrol bombs at police and smashed the storefront of a Starbucks cafe, say media reports.

The BBC website has a video of clashes, showing clearly the aggressive tactics used by the Greek state, now under "socialist" control.

Repression and resistance in Greece

THOUSANDS of angry Greeks will take to the streets today (Sunday) on the anniversary of the death of teenager Alexandros Grigoropolous.

The stakes have been raised by draconian state action yesterday, in which 160 people were arrested in police raids ahead of the mass protests.

As part of the response, the Polytechnic university of Athens was occupied. A statement was issued declaring: "A year after the murder of by the Greek state, the regime enforcing army are attempting to seize every corner of the city.

"The uniformed murderers have invaded the social centre, 'Resalto', in Keratsini. They attacked youths and have blockaded all entrances and exits to places of social and political struggle. They have surrounded Exarhia and the Polytechnic, and continue to make large numbers of arrests and detainments.

"The puppets of the regime, the media, are transmitting state propaganda and as a result are creating an atmosphere and terror.

"One year after the social upheaval of December 2008, the system of oppression and exploitation is once again attempting to re-assert its authority. The Government are attempting to enforce a state of emergency in order to drown out social utrage and enforce the silence of a cemetery on society. We are calling every person who wants to resist to do so by any means possible."

A later post on the After the Greek Riots site on Saturday added: "The message is becoming crystal-clear: democracy takes no chances, it only takes prisoners. Democracy smashes into the spaces that annoy it to the slightest; it only democracy to invert history: the assassins become the victims, the victims become the villains.

"But tomorrow is our day. Demonstrations have been called for in cities across the country (Mytilene, Heraklion, Larisa, Sparta, Agrinio, Thessaloniki, Kilkis, Corfu, Xanthi, Samos, Athens, Rhodes, Lamia, Serres, Volos, Giannena, Patras, Arta, Corinth, Kardisa)."

The building of “Olympion” cinema, in the northern city of Thessaloniki has now also been occuped (see photo). It’s one of the most central spots of the city (Aristotle square) and it was taken in order to convert it to a focus for resistance. A communique was published and handed out calling for “everyone to go out to the streets”.

After the Greek Riots is promising ongoing coverage of the unfolding events.

Friday, 4 December 2009

German anarchists 'declare war on state'

ANARCHIST attacks on police stations and political offices in Berlin and Hamburg over Thursday night were a “declaration of war” on the state, the head of the German Police Union (DPoIG) has claimed.

Reported The Local, an English-language news site in Germany, on Friday December 4: "Unknown perpetrators, assumed to be left-wing extremists, threw Molotov cocktails, paint bombs and cobblestones at Berlin’s Treptow district Federal Criminal Police (BKA) office overnight.

"Meanwhile local offices for the centre-left Social Democrats and the conservative Christian Democrats were also vandalised with anti-war graffiti.

"Around the same time in Hamburg, about 10 masked perpetrators attacked a police precinct in the Schanzenviertel neighbourhood, setting a police cruiser alight, damaging other police cars and breaking windows with stones.

"On Friday afternoon the Berliner Morgenpost also reported that a southern wing of the Chancellory had also been vandalised with three Christmas tree decoration bulbs full of paint."

The paper quoted DPoIG leader Rainer Wendt as saying that though no one was injured in either of the attacks they were a sign of a “new escalation in the spiral of violence”.

“The attacks were anything but spontaneous, and executed in an almost professional manner,” he said.

The Police Union took the incidents so seriously on Friday that they encouraged the conference of state interior ministers, currently underway in Bremen, to take immediate action, hardening criminal prison sentences for attacks on officers and increasing police personnel.

An 84-page study presented by Berlin Interior Minister Ehrhart Körting this November detailed left-wing violence in the German capital, describing the anarchists as “willing to hazard the consequences of major property damage and severe injury to people.”

In 2009, some 125 cars – many of them luxury status-symbol models – were purposely burned by Autonomen in Berlin. The number has more than doubled since last year, when 72 cars were targeted. Police in Hamburg reported 150 burned cars – 16 of which were proven to be politically motivated.

Wendt said without government support, such incidents will continue to occur.

“The investigation goes on, but I have little hope it will be successful,” he said. “This is a declaration of the war on the police and on the state.”

Thursday, 3 December 2009

UK police terrorise photographers

BRITISH police continue to abuse so-called "anti-terrorist" powers to harrass people taking photographs in public places.

The ongoing scandal has been highlighted in the Independent newspaper on December 3 and 4.

It reported how police are stopping and interrogating completely innocent people taking pictures of anything from tourist spots to fish and chip shops, apparently under the impression that they possess a totalitarian-state carte blanche to do whatever they want.

Lord Carlile of Berriew, the Government's independent reviewer of anti-terrorism laws, told the paper: "The fact that someone is taking photographs is not prima facie a good reason for stop and search and is very far from raising suspicion. It is a matter of concern and the police will know that they have to look at this very carefully."

Lord Carlile's comments come just days after a BBC journalist was stopped and searched by two police community support officers as he took photographs of St Paul's Cathedral. Days earlier Andrew White, 33, was stopped and asked to give his name and address after taking photographs of Christmas lights on his way to work in Brighton.

Jenny Jones, a Green Party member of the Metropolitan Police Authority, Scotland Yard's governing body, said police officers stopping innocent people, as Section 44 of the Terrorism Act, allows them to do, was "unacceptable" and "illegal".

She added: "Some officers think they have the right to seize cameras. It is unbelievable and amounts to an abuse of power."

A campaign group called I'm A Photographer Not a Terrorist has been set up in response to the police intimidation.

Wednesday, 2 December 2009

Workers to strike at US giant

ANGRY workers the north of England are to go on strike at an American computer giant.

Staff at Hewlett Packard in Preston and on the Fylde coast are to stage a 24-hour strike after voting overwhelmingly for industrial action in a dispute over pay and jobs.

The Public and Commercial Services (PCS) union said its members at the firm's Enterprise Services section, including those working on Government IT contracts, will walk out on December 10.

Reports the Fleetwood Weekly News: "Officials said there had been growing anger among staff over job losses and a pay freeze since Hewlett Packard (HP) took over EDS in August 2008.

"Up to 1,000 union members will take part in the strike, including those working on IT contracts for the Department for Work and Pensions in Newcastle upon Tyne, Washington, Preston and on the Fylde coast."

The local paper quotes PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka as saying: "It is disgraceful that hard-working staff who are shouldering greater workloads and contributing significantly to HP's revenue and profits should be rewarded with pay freezes and job losses.

"The ballot result illustrates the depth of anger amongst a workforce who face a second year of pay freezes despite the company delivering fourth quarter revenues of 30.8 billion US dollars.

"Management cannot continue to take staff for granted and need to start rewarding staff properly and give them guarantees over job security."

Tuesday, 1 December 2009

Greece faces meltdown

GREECE faces economic collapse as well as an insurrection, latest media reports suggest.

Said The Guardian on Monday: "The likelihood of Greece becoming the next Iceland and plunging into bankruptcy looms over a meeting of EU finance ministers in Brussels today as the Greeks prepare to take another pasting from their colleagues.

"After years of profligacy, hosting the costliest Olympic games ever in 2004 and failing to rein in its spiralling public debt, the country was on the brink of defaulting on loans, according to some seasoned commentators.

"National debt – the highest in the EU and projected to rise to 135.4 % in 2011 – has made the outlook grimmer still. After years of posting 4% growth rates, the economy is expected to contract 1.2% in 2009 with unemployment levels tipped to top 9% amid growing poverty."

The news comes days before December 6, the anniversary of the death of teenager Alexis Grigoropoulos, shot by police in Athens, which sparked last winter's uprising.

EU politicians are worried that the economic failure, as well as the insurrection, could spread to other European states.