WSM day school in Derry

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Date:

Among our recent activities was the ‘Change Not Chaos’ mini-festival organised by a Derry WSM member. Saturday September 30th saw the Dunlgoe Bar play host to a day of anarchist talks, films and music. 

Gregor Kerr, Secretary of the Federation of Dublin Anti-Water Charge Campaigns, kicked things off with a discussion on how the water charges were defeated in the Republic and the role anarchists played in that struggle. The current campaign in the North to defeat the tap tax was discussed with updates on the campaign provided by a comrade from the Belfast-based anarchist group Organise! and Eamonn McCann of the SWP. Julia Doherty of the WSM then gave an introductory talk on Anarchism, covering history, theory and practice and a lively debate ensued over violence, white-male dominance of anarchism and republicanism.

Stalls by Just Books, WSM and Mujeres Libres Derry were on hand stocking everything from pamphlets and books to flags and t-shirts. The Mujeres Libres (Free Women) had the most creative stall offering t-shirts commemorating Free Derry, the Paris Commune, Spain 1936 and the Limerick Soviet as "temporary autonomous zones", with cool front and back logos.

Ramor Ryan, author of "Clandestines gave a reading of his book to a packed upstairs room with a discussion afterwards and a Swiss comrade put on a "comedy" show about police violence. It was very informative and gruesome although this writer didn't really see the comedy aspect. The dangers of baton rounds, tear gas and other "less lethal" weapons were explained and the gory reality of the damage these weapons cause was projected on a six foot screen.

A benefit gig for Belfast's Just Books collective finished off the night with Anti-State and Tin Pot Operation playing to a packed bar. Hundreds of stickers and anarchist papers were distributed to the crowd as well as leaflets detailing the Justice for Terence Wheelock campaign.

This was the WSM’s second public event in Derry and the positive reaction we received from many people attending was encouraging. Although anarchism is still a very small political current in Ireland it is growing and we need a strong, organised and united working class to get beyond the dead end of both republican and loyalist ideas.

The Workers Solidarity Movement is an organisation of working class anarchists who have come together to maximise the impact of anarchist ideas. Pooling the resources of many people allows us to distribute over 6,000 copies of this paper every two months, and 1,000 copies of our twice yearly magazine, Red & Black Revolution. It allows us to discuss the best ways to advance working class interests, and prioritise particular activities rather than be so widely dispersed as to have little effect.

 


This article is from Workers Solidarity 94 Nov/Dec 2006

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