Joe Conlon

Nuit Debout - the failure of parliamentary politics in France

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Since the worldwide recession in 2008, we have seen governments around the world make neoliberal reforms, states hammering through austerity measures. In Ireland we know only too well the extent of austerity, the state has cut everything from healthcare to social housing. We have seen the struggle communities have been fighting against the privatization of water. We have seen the ever rising number of people being made homeless, mothers and fathers having to sleep in cars and parks with their children. We have seen massive unemployment, our loved ones having to emigrate to the other side of the world to find work.

Anarchists: Against Laws and the State, Against Poverty and Violence

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Why It’s Right to Resist the Government

The law is essentially the weapon of the privileged, it is made by them for the purpose of enshrining their power and the people need to dismantle it entirely if they want to be genuinely free” – Errico Malatesta

Does this mean anarchists are against laws? Anarchists are against laws that are created by the rich and the privileged layer of society which are used in their favour. These same laws are used to exploit and oppress the rest of society. These laws are designed to give as little as possible to people.
 

A Brief Introduction to Modern Day Irish Republicanism. What Can Anarchists learn from Modern Day Republicanism?

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Republican Sinn Fein and the Continuity IRA

 

Republican Sinn Fein (RSF) and the Continuity IRA were established due to a split within Provisional Sinn Fein (PSF). At PSF's 1986 ard fheis, members supported the proposal to drop abstentionist policy (not recognizing the Irish state) in the 26 county state. Those at the ard fheis who were opposed to the policy walked out of the ard fheis and out of the Provisional movement. They went on to create Republican Sinn Fein. The split was a political one so it was mainly members of PSF that left - not many members of the Provisional Irish Republican Army (PIRA) left. They saw the need to create a new organization because they believed PSF had broken from the Republican tradition of abstentionism. The Provisional Movement was created for the exact same reason. The same people that created the Provisionals went on to create Republican Sinn Fein.

 

An attempt to liberate a vacant council flat for a homeless mother and her children

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Myself and some comrades were approached by a young mother from Coolock that recently became homeless. The woman and her children became homeless a few weeks previous. While her kids are in school during the day the mother either walks the streets or calls into friends or family member’s homes. When school has ended for the day they have to rely on family and friends to let them stay in their homes. Sometimes the mother has to split her children up so that she’d definitely have a roof over all her kid’s heads for the night.

She had to leave the house she was renting because of the condition the house was in. She went to Dublin City Council (DCC) and because of the advice given to her by the council she registered herself as being homeless. She asked the council to be put up in one of the state’s homeless hostels or money for a hotel room or a B&B. She was told there is no more spaces left in the hostels, but the council would give her money for a hotel room or B&B. The young mother spent days then weeks trying to get a room in a hotel or B&B that would be suitable for her and her children, but to no avail. She had to survive from the good will of her friends and family.

The Housing Crisis is Really a Capitalist Crisis - Resist, Repopulate, Reclaim!

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Ours is a society in which, in every field, one group of people makes decisions, exercise control, limits choices, while the great majority have to accept these decisions, submit to this control and act within the limits of these externally imposed choices. Nowhere is this more evident than in the field of housing: one of those basic human needs which throughout history and all over the world people have satisfied as well as they could for themselves, using the materials what were at hand and their own, and their neighbors labor. The marvelously resourceful anonymous vernacular architecture of every part of the globe is a testimony to their skill, using timber, straw, grass, leaves, hides, stone, clay, bone, earth, mud sand even snow. Consider the igloo: maximum enclosure of space with minimum of labor. Cost of materials and transportation, nil. And all made of water. Nowadays, of course, the Eskimos live on welfare handouts in little northern slums. Man, as Habraken says “no longer houses himself: he is housed” – Colin Ward

 

From Sacco and Vanzetti to the Craigavon 2

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The 23rd of August marked the 91st  anniversary of Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti. They were both executed in the US in 1927 for the supposed robbery of a shoe factory killing of a guard and paymaster. During their trial the prosecution produced conflicting ballistic evidence and witness testimony. The defence had several witness saying where the accused men were on the day of the robbery and killings. This should have proven Sacco and Vanzetti innocence but instead both were convicted and sentenced to death. They were killed for their beliefs, they were insurrectionary anarchists “that advocated relentless warfare against a violent and oppressive government.”

Anti-Internment Group protests RTE censorship

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On Saturday 24th of September the Anti-Internment Group held a protest outside RTE (Irish television and radio station) studios in Donnybrook south Dublin. The protest was held because of RTE’s censorship against the case of the Craigavon 2. The Craigavon 2 have been in jail since March 2009, Brendan McConville and John Paul Wootton (who was only 17 years of age at the time) were accused of the shooting dead of a Police officer.

Their trial was a farce, not only was it a non jury trial, all evidence used in the case used by the prosecution was either circumstantial or witness evidence from a witness whose statements were totally contradictory but also his own father came forward and said he is “walter mitty” (a walter mitty is well known slang in Ireland for a liar).

Dublin Anarchist Black Cross takes part in Annual Anti Internment March, dropped banner in Dublin

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The Dublin Anarchist Black Cross was in attendance of this year's anti-internment march in Belfast on the 7th August. Prior to the march taking place the state put a block on the march from going ahead refusing to give the march organisers permission to march. This block did not deter people from coming out in support of the march and come out in solidarity with political prisoners in prisons in Ireland.

Over 1,000 people marched from the Busy Bee in Andersonstown in west Belfast, down the Falls Road towards Belfast City Hall. When the march reached the end of the Falls Road the Police had the road blocked with a line/siege of armored Jeeps and armed police preventing the march from reaching its destination.

Republican Prisoners in Maghaberry Protest for Basic Conditions in 2015

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Republican prisoners in Maghaberry prison will be coming off their protest on Monday 19th of October. The prisoners were on protest for 9 weeks because of the closing of a hatch in the kitchen that prevents ventilation and the prisoners receiving their food.

The prison administration struck a deal with the protesting prisoners, confirming they will open the kitchen hatch which will let the prisoner “prepare and consume meals in a dignified manner” [1]. Tomorrow the prisoners will return eating the two meals (lunch and dinner) which are granted by the jail.
 

Free Republican Prisoner Willy Wong

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A case that needs highlighting is the case of Republican prisoner Willy Wong - he is held in Maghaberry Prison in Co Antrim. In March 2010 he was arrested along with another man and charged, eventually convicted of possession of a pipe bomb. He was sentenced very differently to the way Republican prisoners (and social prisoners) usually get sentenced. He was sentenced for an undetermined period, but after 5 years inprisoned it would be up to the Parole Board to decide when he is to be released.

Willy Wong was 22 when arrested, he is now 27 years old, he is still in jail. In March he was up in front of the Parole Board. The board came to the conclusion that Willy Wong is not “eligible” for release. The board said they believe he was not “totally reformed” or had not “fully regretted his actions”.
 

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