“Our brother Salvador” A personal memoir by the sisters of Salvador Puig Antich (Translated by Paul Sharkey)

 Anarchism in Spain, News  Comments Off on “Our brother Salvador” A personal memoir by the sisters of Salvador Puig Antich (Translated by Paul Sharkey)
Mar 062016
 
Salvador

May 30, 1948 – March 2, 1974

Forty-two years ago this month — 2 March 1974 — anarchist Salvador Puig Antich was garroted in Barcelona’s Modelo Prison. The following is a personal account by his sisters of the events leading up to his judicial murder.

“In his cell, facing a warder, the impeccably uniformed soldier informed our brother, alvador Puig Antich, of the double death sentences passed on him. According to the witnesses, Salvador wept. He was the third born of a family of six brothers and sisters. From an early age he had shown a tendency to advocate on behalf of the poor. He was expelled mid-way through the school year from the Bonanova De La Salle College for defending a fellow pupil unfairly treated by a teacher. It was hard to find another college to take him, but he did go back to school, the Pompeya Capuchin College; a year later he entered the Salesian College in Mataró where he sat his baccalaureate. It was there that he met Father Manero, the priest who was to be his companion during his last night a few years later.

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DURRUTI — LETTER FROM PRISON (El Puerto de Santa María, Cadiz) 1933 Agustín Guillamón (Translated by Paul Sharkey)

 Anarchism in Spain, News  Comments Off on DURRUTI — LETTER FROM PRISON (El Puerto de Santa María, Cadiz) 1933 Agustín Guillamón (Translated by Paul Sharkey)
Dec 232015
 

durruti_ascaso_prison_cadixOn Sunday 2 April 1933, Durruti, Ascaso and ‘Combina’ were arrested leaving the Andalusian-Extremaduran Regional Congress in Seville charged with promulgating the ‘criminal’ ideas discussed during the closing session.” [1] This was blatant ‘thought crime’ and flew in face of the Second Republic’s much vaunted right to freedom of expression. On Sunday 9 April, the representative leaders from Estat Catalá and the ERC (Republican Left of Catalonia) gathered in Barcelona to pay tribute to the fascist Josep Dencás (the Minister of Health at the time); they believed the Seville arrests had decapitated the FAI and that that organisation could now be considered a spent force. Such declarations amounted to wishful thinking, commonplace among those directing the bourgeois machinery of repression when they set out to resolve complicated and deep-seated social issues and concomitant bitter and run-of-the-mill terrorist and public order implications by reducing the issues to a few individual leaders and scapegoats. Josep Dencás was one of the founders, prime movers – along with the Badía brothers – and sponsors of the fascistic, pro-independence escamots of the JEREC (Republican Left Youth-Estat Catalá).

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A profile of Txema Bofill (1953-2015), aka ‘Sabata’. From Grupos Autónomos: una crónica armada de la transición democrática by Joni D. (El Lokal, Barcelona, 2014) pp. 60-69 — Translated by Paul Sharkey

 Anarchism in Spain, News  Comments Off on A profile of Txema Bofill (1953-2015), aka ‘Sabata’. From Grupos Autónomos: una crónica armada de la transición democrática by Joni D. (El Lokal, Barcelona, 2014) pp. 60-69 — Translated by Paul Sharkey
Dec 212015
 
xantifakir.com-Txema-Bofill

Txema Bofill (1953-2015), aka ‘Sabata’

Sabata (from sabata, the Catalan word for shoe) decided as a child he was intended for the priesthood and was entered into a seminary, which he later left, unable to live up to the vow of celibacy. Born in 1953, this restless child of a bourgeois Catalan Catholic family from La Bisbal was captivated by the charismatic personality of a local priest and decided to follow in his footsteps, despite his father’s misgivings, who believed that at the age of nine he did not know enough to make such a monumental decision. The village priest, a dynamic character, impressed Sabata, as did Catalanism and the sense of brotherhood. He also discovered repression at first hand at this time: camping near the border they were surrounded one night by Civil Guard troops; on another occasion, during a night-time crossing, a cheeky retort to a challenge from two police officers earned him a slap in the face. His ‘radicalisation began in the seminary, as he graduated from child to adolescent in the company of worker priests, followers of Liberation Theology and reading banned books from France. Most people in the border area had relatives in France and the proximity of the frontier made contact that much easier.

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Compensation, Not Justice A discussion paper on asbestos abuse read to the Scottish Parliament by James Kelman.

 Health, News  Comments Off on Compensation, Not Justice A discussion paper on asbestos abuse read to the Scottish Parliament by James Kelman.
Oct 202015
 

'I never sit down with an idea' … James Kelman in GlasgowA little on the wider struggle against asbestos abuse: my experience of the industry itself began fifty years ago at the age of 19. I worked as a mixer for Turner & Co., Manchester, producing asbestos by-products. Every hour I emptied barrels of raw asbestos fibre into a mixing machine, added cement and water. After each mix I scooped out the residue by hand. A young guy. Who cares about breathing masks and gloves, and over a period of months millions of raw fibre were in the air I breathed.

No Pleural Plaques show on my lungs as far as I know. We discover their existence when our lungs are x-rayed. Mine have not been x-rayed for years. In themselves Pleural Plaques do not damage our capacity to breathe, as far as we know, and are not a precursor to asbestos-related diseases, as far as we know. But psychologically, and to that extent physically, their existence does produce an effect in us. Their existence confirms not only that we were exposed to the risk of asbestos poisoning, but that our bodies have been invaded. The poisonous fibres are within us. This makes us more liable to develop an asbestos related disease than those who dont have any Pleural Plaques. This is borne out by insurance companies offering to pay out a sum of money in advance of any asbestos related disease being contracted.

PleuralPlaques

Calcified pleural plaques of a 73-year old Caucasian male

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El Movimiento Libertario Español Pasado, presente y futuro (Suplemento a Cuedernos de Ruedo iberico. 1974) José Martínez y José Martin-Artajo (Redactores)

 Anarchism in Spain, News  Comments Off on El Movimiento Libertario Español Pasado, presente y futuro (Suplemento a Cuedernos de Ruedo iberico. 1974) José Martínez y José Martin-Artajo (Redactores)
Jun 292015
 

MLECover1El Movimiento Libertario Español. Pasado, presente y futuro (Suplemento a Cuedernos de Ruedo iberico, 1974) redactado por José Martínez y José Ignacio Martin-Artajo (Kindle and Kobo editions)
NOW AVAILABLE ON KINDLE — READ INSIDECheck out all Christiebooks titles HERE UK : £3.18 ; USA : $5.01 FRANCE : €4.48 ; GERMANY : €4.48 ; SPAIN : €4.48 ; ITALY: €4.48 ; NETHERLANDS : €4.48  ; JAPAN : ¥ 619CANADA : CDN$ 6.16 ; BRAZIL : R$ 15.65 ; AUSTRALIA : $6.53 ; INDIA : R318 ; MEXICO : $77.70

 ChristieBooks on KOBO  — El Movimiento Libertario Español. Pasado, presente y futuro — £3.50

El primer imperativo que nos impusimos fue el de evitar que nuestro conjunto tuviera un carácter arqueológico. Caer en la tentación arqueológica era fácil. Abordar la historia reciente del anarquismo español, tratar de la práctica actual de sus organizaciones, ceñir aunque sólo sea flojamente los problemas que tiene planteados es tarea ardua que nos ha procurado muchos sinsabores. El segundo imperativo era evitar el monolitismo, no incurrir en el pecado de aplicar una línea estricta al fascículo. Esto exigía no caer en «el fetichismo de las siglas», no centrarnos en el estudio de las organizaciones libertarias actuales y de las posiciones oficiales de éstas, sino intentar partir de una realidad más profunda, de la «corriente libertaria» a que aluden algunos de los colaboradores del suplemento, soporte no sólo de aquellas organizaciones y portadora de sus doctrinas «oficiales» sino fenómeno subyacente productor de una mayor riqueza de formas orgánicas, de valores ideológicos y de prácticas concretas. imponía alinear a lo largo de sus páginas trabajos críticos construidos a partir de ideologías no libertarias y colaboraciones de miembros de las diversas tendencias libertarias.

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Chevron and the Bolivarian government El Libertario editorial collective

 News, Power elites and brokers, USA  Comments Off on Chevron and the Bolivarian government El Libertario editorial collective
May 212014
 

ChevronVenIntroduction: Why a report about Chevron in Venezuela?

May 21st is the day various social movements from around the world have chosen to stage a planetary day of action against Chevron. The objective is to demand that the United States- based oil company modifies its practices and admits responsibility for the serious crimes it has committed all over the planet during its history.

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55 YEARS OF CASTRO’S “REVOLUTION” — and what did it produce? Long Live Socialist Capitalism! CUBA LIBERTARIA 28. Grupos de apoyo a los libertarios y sindicalistas independientes de Cuba

 Anarchism in Cuba, News  Comments Off on 55 YEARS OF CASTRO’S “REVOLUTION” — and what did it produce? Long Live Socialist Capitalism! CUBA LIBERTARIA 28. Grupos de apoyo a los libertarios y sindicalistas independientes de Cuba
Feb 272014
 
AntonioCastro

Antonio Castro (Fidel’s son): international golf champion, Habanero mover and shaker, and champion of the Castroite Cuban ‘buro-bourgeoisie’ and bon-viveurs…

CL28    Mais où sont les neiges d’antan?  After rejecting calls for a ‘more rapid move toward the implementation of Socialism’, Raúl Castro announced (in January) the inauguration of the Mariel ‘Special Development Zone’, a commercial/industrial business zone in which the now mature Cuban ruling class (men such as Castro’s son Antonio Castro) can invite foreign entrepreneurs, rentier capitalists and bankers to invest in Cuba. Presumably with the aim of building capitalism in one country …

 

Two Bulletins (PDFs): Humanidad Libre (Galicia) and Buenaventura (Islas Canarias)

 Anarchism in Spain, News  Comments Off on Two Bulletins (PDFs): Humanidad Libre (Galicia) and Buenaventura (Islas Canarias)
Jan 062014
 
Humanidad

Humanidad Libre (Galicia) issue 46, December 2013 (pdf)

Buenaventura

Buenaventura (Islas Canarias): issue 41, January 2014 (pdf)

 

Kotoku, Osugi y Yamaga: Tres Anarquistas Japoneses by Victor García (1919-199), pseudonym of Tomás Germinal Gracia Ibars (Kindle edition)

 Anarchism in Japan, News  Comments Off on Kotoku, Osugi y Yamaga: Tres Anarquistas Japoneses by Victor García (1919-199), pseudonym of Tomás Germinal Gracia Ibars (Kindle edition)
Jan 032014
 

ThreeJapAnsKotuko, Osugi y Yamaga: tres anarquistas Japoneses by Victor García (in Spanish). ISBN 978-1-873976-68-5. First published in September 1975 by ‘Ruta’, Venezuela. This eBook (Kindle edition) is published by ChristieBooks in conjunction with the Grupo Cultural de Estudios Sociales de Melbourne and Acracia Publications —  Check out all Kindle editions of ChristieBooks titles  NOW AVAILABLE ON KINDLE — £1.87/€2.25/$3.00  READ INSIDE!  ¡LEER EL INTERIOR!

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In his 1975 work the late Víctor García (as editor of the anarchist youth (FIJL) paper Ruta) profiled three important Japanese libertarians whose struggles took place during what might be described as the heroic age of the organised anarchist movement in Japan (1903-1937). It was a period in which many of them died challenging the cruel and despotic Mikado regime.

The three freedom fighters he selected from this period were: Denjiro Kotoku, Sakai Osugi and Taiji Yamaga, chronologically placed at the beginning, middle and the end of that heroic time frame in order to give Westerners some insight into the anarchist movement in Japan.

AlberolaGerminalCaracas1960

Caracas, Venezuela, 1960: Victor García (left) and Octavio Alberola

Víctor García, considered by some to be the Marco Polo of the international anarchist movement (because of his extensive travels), visited Japan in 1957 and again in 1974. During his first visit he was welcomed by the last of the anarchist biographees — Taiji Yamaga — with whom he spent three months travelling to many cities and towns in the archipelago (except Hokkaido) being presented to most of the survivors of the Japanese libertarian movement. On his second visit in 1957, Víctor García interviewed more old and new militants to glean the material for the present work and for his more substantial (600+ pages) study of Japanese anarchism, ‘Museifushugi’, which was translated by Paul Sharkey and edited, substantially expanded and enhanced by ‘Wat Tyler’, an English teacher — a comrade —living in Osaka. ‘Museifushugi’ was originally scheduled for publication in 1981 by Cienfuegos Press but had to be scrapped when the printer ‘lost’ the corrected galleys in a fire — and refused to re-set the book. Fortunately, we have recently salvaged the corrected text and it is currently being re-proofed and further updated by Wat Tyler, Victor Garcia’s joint author and original English-language editor. It should be available in Kindle format sometime later this year.

ThreeJapspic

Left to right: Denjiro Kotoku, Sakae Osugi, Taiji Yamaga, and Taiji Yamaga with Victor Garcia (pseudonym of Tomás Germinal Gracia Ibars, a founder of the Catalan Libertarian Youth – JJLL – and one of the most prolific writer/activists of the Spanish anarchist movement)

LOS MAÑOS: ANATOMY OF AN ACTION GROUP by Freddy Gómez with Mariano Aguayo Morán and a 1992 interview with Aguayo Morán by Antonio Téllez. (Translated by Paul Sharkey)

 Anarchism in Aragón, Anarchism in Spain, Anarchist activism, News, Resistance movements  Comments Off on LOS MAÑOS: ANATOMY OF AN ACTION GROUP by Freddy Gómez with Mariano Aguayo Morán and a 1992 interview with Aguayo Morán by Antonio Téllez. (Translated by Paul Sharkey)
Dec 142013
 

Los Manoscover2LOS MAÑOS: ANATOMY OF AN ACTION GROUP by Freddy Gómez with Mariano Aguayo Morán — interviewed in September 1976 and translated by Paul Sharkey. Appendix: Mariano Aguayo Morán — interviewed on 18 February 1992 by Antonio Téllez about the formation of the Los Maños group; also translated by Paul Sharkey. ISBN 978-1-873976-67-8. Published in 2013 by ChristieBooks —  Check out all Kindle editions of ChristieBooks titles  NOW AVAILABLE ON KINDLE — £1.88/€2.26/$3.00  READ INSIDE!  ¡LEER EL INTERIOR!

UK : £1.88 ; USA : $3.00 ; Germany : €2.26 ; France :  €2.26 ; Spain:  €2.26 ; Italy:  €2.26 ; Japan: ¥ 309 ; India: R184.00 : Canada: CDN$ 3.19 ; Brazil: R$7.00 ; Mexico: $38.00; Australia: $3.30

In 1945 Mariano Aguayo Morán (1922 -1994) who had been active in a small group of anarchists and socialists, took up the armed struggle against Franco. Imprisoned for a few months in 1948, he moved to Barcelona in February 1949 and joined the Los Maños anarchist action group (maño being a slang term for natives of Aragon) led by Wenceslao Giménez Orive “Wences” and “Jimeno”, Simón Gracia Fleringan, Plácido Ortiz, Salgado, D. G. M., “Rodolfo”, César Saborit Carrelero and the traitor Aniceto Pardillo Manzanero. On March 2 1949, in Barcelona, Wences, José López Penedo, Carlos Vidal Pasanau together with Francisco and José Sabaté Llopart, ambushed what they believed to be the car of Eduardo Quintela, head of the Francoist secret police (Brigada Politico Social – BPS) in Catalonia; they killed, instead, the secretary of the Falangist Youth Front, Manuel Piñol and his driver. Subsequently the group carried out a string of armed robberies in Madrid, Malaga, Seville and in France in order to fund an attempt on the life of Franco as he drove to his residence at the royal palace on Mount Pardo. A few months later they made a second, equally unsuccessful, attempt to blow up Franco’s convoy as it made its way up the steep winding road at La Cuesta de la Muela between Zaragoza and Madrid. Following their return to Barcelona on 2 January 1950 the group was betrayed by a disaffected member, Aniceto Pardillo Manzanero (The Kid), and most were arrested on 9 January, shortly after Wences took poison and killed himself when he was shot and wounded in a police trap. Simón Gracia Fleringan was executed in Barcelona by firing squad on December 24 1950 together with  Victoriano Muñoz Tresserras and Plácido Ortiz Gratal. Their bodies were thrown into a common, unmarked, grave. Mariano Aguayo was fortunate to have been in Paris when the group was betrayed in Barcelona.

Mariano Aguayo 1

Mariano Aguayo Morán

This interview with Mariano Aguayo Morán, in September 1976, provided an opportunity to get to grips with the history of the libertarian anti-Franco resistance in the crucial years after the war (1946-1950), the Second World War having inspired high but ultimately disappointed hopes at a time when, after the Nazi and Italian fascist regimes had been defeated, the Franco regime looked likely to be next in line to fall. The ‘Los Maños’ group, which grew out of the close friendship between two young men from the working class El Arrabal district of Zaragoza, was soon wedded to the cause of anarchist activism and drawn into the nebulous libertarian resistance of which Quico Sabaté (1915-1960) and José Luis Facerias (1920-1957) were then the two emblematic representatives.

The main purpose behind this interview is not to extoll the praises of the shadow warriors from those times, but to learn from the story of the ‘Los Maños’ group, as told by one of its protagonists, of the difficult circumstances in which such resistance occurred, and understand the problems with which it had to grapple. There, to our way of thinking, is where its morsel of human truth resides.

Freddy Gómez