Saturday last, 11th October, saw tens of thousands take to the streets of Dublin in a powerful, colourful and vibrant display of opposition to the Irish government’s attempts to impose water charges.
The numbers who turned out were so large and took everybody by surprise to such an extent that nobody – media, gardai or organisers – could give an accurate estimate of actual numbers. Estimates varied from 30,000 to 100,000, but whatever the exact figure was it was clear that this was the start of something huge.
It was an energising and invigorating protest to be part of. From well before the start time, people were arriving in their droves at Parnell Square. To see groups of people arriving in by bus from all over the city and from around the country was inspiring and should have a huge impact on the political confidence of all those who took part.
The WSM considers the struggle for Kobane and the autonomous zones of Rojava to be crucial for the development of a political alternative for the region. We view Daesh as the toxic excrescence of the results of global and regional imperialist intervention in Syria and Iraq.
OLINTLA is a small village in the Sierra Norte, a remote, mountainous region to the east of Mexico City. The landscape there is dramatic, green and beautiful, mostly sunlit jungle, rivers and wildlife. The hillsides are occasionally populated by farming towns and villages, mainly indigenous communities whose way of life is constantly threatened. In recent years, the Mexican state has accelerated plans for the development of a vast hydroelectric power plant in the area, directly impacting the people in Olintla and about a dozen or so neighbouring communities. What appears on the surface to be a ‘green energy’ project is in fact closely bound up with community displacement and the aggressive extraction of local oil and gas reserves, primarily to the detriment of the region’s water resources and wider capacity to sustain life. Unfortunately, Olintla is far from an atypical case but represents how indigenous communities in Mexico, as in Latin America more generally, tend to bear the brunt of the state’s creation of opportunities for private capital accumulation, called ‘development’ by those in power and ‘projects of death’ by the communities affected.
1. To popularise the idea that an anarchist society is desirable and that it is reachable if enough people organise for it.
2. To encourage the use of anarchist methodologies in day to day organising efforts.
3. To expose the class nature of capitalist society and to argue that class organisation is fundamental to overthrowing capitalism and creating a new society.
4. To demonstrate the links between the issues that people struggle around and how these struggles often do not stand in isolation from each other.
1. The WSM Constitution’s core point of unity number 7 states:
“We actively oppose all manifestations of prejudice within the workers' movement and society in general and we work alongside those struggling against racism, sexism, [religious] sectarianism and homophobia as a priority. We see the success of a revolution and the successful elimination of these oppressions after the revolution being determined by the building of such struggles in the pre-revolutionary period. The methods of struggle that we promote are a preparation for the running of society along anarchist and communist lines after the revolution.”
This position paper outlines WSM membership and how we engage with spheres of people interested in the WSM
Protests took place in cities across Mexico yesterday following the disappearance of 43 student teachers in the southern state of Guerrero almost two weeks ago, with many of those having gone missing after the police arrested them. Thousands of people blocked streets and roads, chanting “They took them alive; we want them back alive"!
The students, who studied at Ayotzinapa, a radical teacher training college in Guerrero, went missing on the night of 26 September. Iguala’s municipal police fired on the students’ buses and, an hour later, unidentified gunmen fired upon them again. The attacks left three students and three others dead in the city, as well as at least 17 wounded. 43 students remain unaccounted for, a significant number of whom were seen being driven away in police vehicles after the first attack. A mass grave has since been found in a nearby location, but the charred remains have yet to be identified.
The notion that the fall of Kobanê could be prevented by the intervention of the Turkish army is a smokescreen that covers the truth that they are already intervening - on the side of ISIS. The Turkish state's selective blockade of the border, which allows arms and volunteers to cross for ISIS, but strangles them for the YPG defenders of Kobanê is the decisive intervention that is giving ISIS the upper hand.
This fundamental truth has been put forward by some minority voices in the mainstream media. Chiefly those intrepid reporters on the ground trying to cover the story. Honourable mention should be made of the BBC's Paul Adams amongst others. But these marginalised voices have been drowned out by the official media line issuing from the central editorial offices downwards, that the Kurds of Kobanê and Turkish Kurdistan are protesting "against Turkey's inactivity" or "failure to intervene". This is the world turned upside down. And Orwellian newspeak where the exact opposite of the truth is reported as accepted fact. The banners the protesters are holding say "Turkey Stop Supporting ISIS".
Last week, it was revealed that four Irish NGOs – the Immigrant Council of Ireland, Nasc Irish Immigrant Support Centre, Focus Ireland and Sonas Housing – had submitted a report to the Minister for Justice about the accommodation of suspected sex trafficking victims in direct provision centres. While the report raises a number of very valid concerns, it’s unsurprising that one particular line has received the most attention – the allegation that “traffickers have used the asylum system for residency and accommodation while simultaneously trafficking victims”. The media focus on this uncorroborated claim is unfortunate (albeit totally predictable) at a time when asylum seekers’ complaints about their housing are finally starting to get the headlines they should have had for years.