Mar 22, 2010

updates from Moscow Anarchist Black Cross

Andrei Mergenyov is imprisoned in Saratov after a fight with a Nazi in June 2007. Recently we received a following letter from him, and we translated it just to remind you about one of the less known Russian anti-fascist prisoners.

Address of Andrey (note that this is a new address!):

Andrey Mergenyov

Saratovskaya oblast G. Engels,


3 otryad 413116

You may also write address in cyrillic (if your e-mail interface does not
render cyrillic letters correctly, visit

Мергеневу А.К.
Саратовская обл, г Энгельс, ФБУ ИК-13, 3 отряд, 413116

Hi this is Taiwan writing. I have 11 more months to do, not too much. I have
already done 2 years and 7 months, and I feel like only yesterday I was
running after Nazis with a bottle of beer in my hand. I have received plenty
of letters - from Moscow, Ufa, Petrozhavodsk, Minsk and Vladivostok, I even
got two letters from London. I am working at prisoner's club, playing bass
guitar, from time to time we perform to other prisoners. I am doing sports
and qualified for a new profession of a painter, now I am studying to become
a crane operator of bridge cranes. Friends and family are visiting me. Thanks
for writing me, I would be happy to receive another letter from you, I will
answer for sure.


Taiwan 11th of January 2010

More on case of Andrey:

Also, Aleksey Bychin, who is doing five year sentence for a fight with a Nazi
who was a police officer off-duty, was recently moved to another subsection
in his colony. Please fix his address, as letters sent to right subsection
will make it to him faster - new address is

FBU OIK-2 IK-7 otryad No. 12

ul. Karnallitovaya d. 98

g. Solikamsk Permskiy Kray

618545 Russia

More info about case of Aleksey:

And at last, a bit of a good news - Yura Mishutkin, who killed a Nazi in self
defence in Vladivostok in November of 2008, was handed a new sentence 4th of
March, after relatives of Nazi made an appeal against his previous
probational sentence. New sentence is 1.5 years probational sentence and
around 1.5 million roubles (50 000 USD) of compensations for the relatives.
This is more harsh than the previous sentence, but still it is great news
that Yura does not have to go to jail.

ABC Moscow

abc-msk AT riseup D net

P.O. Box 13 109028 Moscow Russia


Mar 14, 2010

South Side Chicago Anti Racist Action organizing against planned nazi march

Callout to Confront INSF ‘White Pride World Wide’ March in Chicago

UPDATE: Download the flyer: (English JPG, Spanish JPG, or Quarter-page Printable PDF) and also call the hotline at 773-980-6013 for day-of updates about the action.

On March 21st, 2010 the Illinois National Socialist Front is planning to march in Chicago for what they call “White Pride World Wide”. South Side Anti-Racist Action is making plans to confront the march to let them know that they are not welcome in our city.

Student and worker struggles

two new posts from our friends at Gathering Forces:
March 4th Student Strike Wrap Up &
March Fourth Seattle by Mamos

"So what approach should we have to social democratic union and student government leaders in the meantime? I don’t think we should needlessly antagonize them or call them out just for the sake of calling them out even though we have obvious disagreements about whether change comes from above or from below. I think what we can do is push them as far as possible to implement their social democratic tendencies because doing this further exposes all of the contradictions I’ve laid out here. We can encourage them to keep mobilizing the rank and file to fight the cuts and can hold them to their word, trying to explain to them the limitations of trying to make the bureaucracy more progressive. Every action they call we can use as an opportunity to flyer, talk to workers and students, and to build up independent rank and file fighting organizations. At some point some of them will have to go back on their word and they’ll start opposing these actions and then we should call them out and continue to organize independently. If this happens, other social democrats will probably want to continue fighting and they will realize the need to rely on rank and file power as they start to clash with the bureaucratic higher ups… this could open up cracks in the bureaucracy and makes it easier for rank and file workers and students to seize the initiative. In any case, we need to maintain our organizational independence from progressive union officials while working in a friendly united front coalition with them against the cuts"

and later

"There are forms of spontaneity that fail to advance the struggle and forms we would oppose; in the case of March 4th Seattle though, the spontaneity we experienced helped bring new layers of students into the struggle. It is crucial to emphasize that spontaneous militancy and direct action here is coming from everyday students and workers, many of them women and people of color; it is NOT coming from the insurrectionist “occupy everything, demand nothing” tendency because that tendency is not very widespread in Seattle, at least not yet. I hope that as militancy increases we can start to cohere a different tendency, independent of the liberals and bureaucrats on the one hand and independent from the insurrectionists on the other hand. What happened on March 4th points in this direction.

The debate going on in California about whether or not the insurrectionists should have occupied the highway in Oakland is very different than the debate here about whether we should have blocked I-5. Here, the drive toward the highway was not the result of organized insurrectionists breaking off from a larger march. It was something that emerged from what was (at least at one point) a majority of the crowd. If anything, those who backed the idea of the freeway occupation are the student counterpart to the furstrated social democratic workers I mentioned earlier, folks who are tired of following labor laws that are stacked against them and are starting to consider wildcat (unauthorized) strikes as a viable option. So too are students open to taking risks to advance the struggle. Folks who would previously have been trying to push the Democrats to the left are getting fed up with how unresponsive the system has been do their efforts and now have only one place left to go: into the streets, where they are joining radicals and revolutionaries in mass, democratic direct action"

Mar 12, 2010

A New Fascism? A Dead Imperialism?

Below are reposts from an older exchange between Stan Goff and Don Hamerquist. The original discussion was posted on a version of the Bring The Ruckus!(BtR) website that is no longer in use. For reasons of extending the discussion, or at least some concepts within, we are now putting the exchange up on 3WF. We have attempted to date the posts as they became public. These discussions predate the launch of this blog by just a few months and helped shape the basis for what we were aiming for in terms of movement debate and anlysis.

Below is the introduction from BtR, Goff's original article with subsequent exchange. We then include some related comments.

A New Fascism? A Dead Imperialism? An Exchange between Stan Goff and Don Hammerquist

...debate between veteran revolutionaries Stan Goff and Don Hammerquist on fascism and global capitalism is now available on the Bring the Ruckus web site. In it, Hammerquist more fully develops his definition of fascism and his argument for why Al Qaeda and other movements should be understood as posing a revolutionary fascist challenge to global capital. He also argues that the present capitalist system should not be considered "imperialist."

"The fact is that [American] neoconservative policies may well jeopardize economic and political stability in the metropolis. They are willing to risk, not only popular living and working conditions in the imperial center, but also the relative power and influence of the specifically U.S. sections of capitalism. This is why it is so problematic to identify neocon strategy with a resurgence of U.S. imperialism. They would risk the very basis of American global power to protect and advance what they call freedom.?

"Contemporary neo-fascism involves two elements. First there is a rapidly expanding social base. This base is composed of the declassed and marginalized, a huge population that has been permanently defined as non-productive and redundant by capitalist development... The second element is the assortment of reactionary groups, with no necessary connection to each other, that more or less consciously try to organize this social base against the established structure of power, a structure which they see as corrupt, decadent and fundamentally wrong."

Nov 10, 2004
There's No There There: Debating a Neocon

Dec 15, 2004
Responding to Stan Goff's, Debating a NeoCon

Jan 13, 2005
Continued discourse on article, Debating a NeoCon. Goff responds to Hamerquist

Feb 15, 2005
Hamerquist on dilemmas for Capital and further outlines of the content of the resistance movements.

March 1, 2005
Matthew Lyons comments on Hamerquist Goff exchange

March 31, 2005
Hamerquist Responds to Matthew Lyons

Mar 5, 2010

Michael Novick responds to Thinking and Acting in Real Time and a Real World

Comments to Thinking and Acting in Real Time and A Real World

Thanks, Don and TWF for this, and for the link to Kali Akuno's piece. I do know Kali and value his work and am surprised that I wasn't aware of this; we have printed others of his pieces in "Turning the Tide: Journal of Anti-Racist Action, Research & Education," (available in pdf format on-line at, click on 'publication'). Kali has done some important work around Katrina, the election campaign of Chokwe Lumumba in Mississippi, and many other causes. Although I have had a lot of unity with him in the past, and had many disagreements with Don in the past, I find myself agreeing with Don's assessment that his general strategic line formulation towards a popular front with liberal and progressive forces "against fascism" is really inadequate (even though his general political orientation is strong enough that much of predictive material he penned in November 2008 has come to fruition, such as the inability of Obama and the Democrats to deal with the crisis, and the resurgence of the Republican right).

However, both Kali's piece, and Don's (which has some great strengths, including its insistence on the explosive potential in human consciousness of the current and enduring crisis of the empire) have a couple of critical weaknesses regarding both war and fascism. The insurmountable internal contradictions of capitalism and colonialism, as well as the irreconcilable contradiction between capitalism/colonialism and the people it exploits and oppresses mean that war -- international, intra-capitalist war -- is inevitable. The culmination of the current imperialist wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan, and the military activity and threats against Iran, Venezuela and in Africa, are part of a strategic campaign of encirclement being carried out against China by US-led imperialism. The war on terror, which the other comment, citing Mike Davis, correctly relates to long term counter-insurgency warfare in global and internal slums, is also a prelude to a military conflict with China (notwithstanding, or perhaps more properly, exactly because of) US dependence on China. The US and China are already engaged in vigorous cyber-war.

The citation of the Trilateral Commission, particularly the 'excess of democracy' elements, in the other note is also welcome. The US is still extremely actively engaged in the process of "spatial deconcentration" (removal of the Black, indigenous/Mexicano and other poor people from the urban core) that is necessary for such urban slum warfare to be tactically possible in the US (where, unlike the Third World or global south, the poor to a certain degree still occupy the city center rather than the outskirts). The gentrification of New York, where Harlem has become a predominantly European-descent area, the depopulation of New orleans, and the eradication of Detroit are part of this ongoing process since the Empire was forced to battle in the cities of the US.

Regarding fascism, as I have struggled with Don and others on TWF in the past, the colonial and settler colonial nature of the US state and society means that elements of "fascism" have always been part of the social and political fabric. This doesn't mean it's a "tactic" of the bourgeoisie, it means that (settler) colonialism has always been a cross-class project, with independent (armed) action by various classes and strata, and that the very concept of a "working class" as envisioned by Marx and Marxists (or anarchists) needs to be modified by an understanding of the importance of land, particularly private property in land, to the nature of Capital and its social relations. One of the things that the current crisis of capitalism should have made manifest, but apparently still hasn't, is that the capital 'market' in 'real estate (land, housing, etc) far exceeds industrial, or even financial capital. The bursting of the housing bubble should have helped identify to all one of the irreconcilable and unresolvable contradictions of capitalism -- that whether or not a particular house is "under water," the totality of mortgage debt, principal and interest, far exceeds the value of the property which "secures" it. The ballooning of such debt into "securities" only served to magnify the overhang. At the same time, the value of energy, water, and agricultural productivity (and the costs of waste disposal and/or decontamination) absorbed into capital by the private expropriation of land, nature and the commons of water and air, have helped to precipitate an enormous and catastrophically expensive (in life and dollars) environmental crisis which, like the economic crisis, manifests the not merely moribund or parasitic but necrotic nature of the Empire. The intersecting economic and environmental crises will not be solved by cap and trade, 'green jobs,' or health care reform, let alone the stimulus; but they may serve to provoke the kind of insurrectionary transformation of consciousness that Don is musing about. In that regard, both Don and the commentator miss the point about the struggles developing in "Latin" America -- the indigenous movements are not the resurrection of "national liberation" but its supercession by people standing on its shoulders and capable of overcoming its Euro-centric limits and definitions.

--Michael Novick