Perth: Anti-Hanson protesters clash with police

9 Mar 2017 – Protesters have crashed a Pauline Hanson campaign event in Perth, clashing with the far-right senator’s supporters and police.

At least one person was arrested in the protest outside the Paddington Ale House, where Senator Hanson held a campaign event on Thursday evening.

Dozens of police lined the entrance to the Mt Hawthorn pub to allow Hanson’s supporters to enter the One Nation event to cries of “shame” from the protesters.

There were several scuffles as Ms Hanson’s supporters tried to wade their way through the vocal crowd.

Among the crowd of One Nation supporters was 18-year-old Tyler Walsh, who said he thought the protesters were hypocrites.

“I just think the protesters are a bit hypocritical because they have all the signs out saying ‘fascism’, ‘racism’, but really they’re the ones being the fascists and stopping us from having a good time here.”

Outside the pub, Zoe Zarzycki told journalists that she attended the protest to show the rest of Australia that Senator Hanson’s policies were not welcome in the West.

“I think her policies are fundamentally racist, sexist and and anti-queer and they’re not coming from any place of reasoning, it’s just hatred,” Ms Zarzycki said.

“We’re here to let people know that its not OK and most Australians are not OK with Pauline Hanson, that even while One Nation has gained support, there’s so much push back.”

Senator Hanson told journalists that she expects WA Nationals leader Brendan Grylls will lose his Pilbara seat to One Nation, which also expects to pick up the Nationals-held Kalgoorlie.

Indonesia: Prison riot erupts in Jambi

2 March, 2017 An uprising broke out at Jambi Class II A Penitentiary on Wednesday evening. Several inmates became violent, burning down the prison’s canteen and meeting hall. The riot erupted at around 9 p.m. local time and lasted until midnight.

The riot began when inmates in drug and general crime blocks rejected anti-narcotics operations that would be conducted by Jambi-chapter National Narcotics Agency (BNN) personnel and attacked the officers.

The inmates later poured out of their cells and began to burn the canteen and meeting hall. Police and military personnel were dispatched to suppress the riot.

Six male inmates got shot by security officers. One of the police officers deployed was wounded by stones thrown by the inmates. Those injured were taken to a nearby hospital. Meanwhile, female inmates were moved to other rooms deemed safer.

“No injuries or fatality were reported in the riot,” Jambi Police chief Brig.Gen. Yazid Fanani said on Thursday. Police and military personnel are still on guard at the location.

Yazid said mediation between representatives of the government and the prison’s inmates had been conducted following the incident. During the mediation, representatives of the inmates urged the government to replace Jambi Prison warden Djarot Sugiarto.

Citing complaints of inmates in the prison, they said many of his policies, such as poor access to health care services for those who were ill, had inflicted losses upon the inmates. This was one factor that triggered a riot in January.

Jakarta, Indonesia: Report from the Anti-Trump Protest Action at the US Embassy

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A report about the protest action against Donald Trump’s Muslim Ban on 04.02.17  that was organized by Anarkonesia, Persaudaraan Pekerja Anarko-Sindikalis (Anarcho-Syndicalist Workers Association) and Antifa Jakarta (Jakarta Anti Fascist).After being organized and announced in only a week, the solidarity and protest action against the USA’s elected president’s Muslim Ban policies, spontaneously proceeded quite well according to plan.

Around 25-30 participants from the three groups were involved in direct action by marching from the assembly point at Galeri Nasional to the main action point in front of the USA Embassy building. Besides the three groups –which were the main organizers and initiators —there were also other individuals who were also involved in the action. They came from many groups with different backgrounds, such as the women movements, LGBTQ , PLHIV, progressive Muslim groups, advocate organizations for West Papua, War on Drugs victims, Shia Muslims, students, foreign citizens (including several citizens of the USA), and also Indonesian citizens themselves.

Anarkonesia itself is a local anarchist collective (the members come from Jakarta, Bogor, Depok, Tangerang, and Bekasi), its members come from many variants of anarchism, while the PPAS is a local syndicalist association, which means the organization has more focus in the anarcho-syndicalism. And of course, we absolutely understand the Antifa as a strategic confrontation group against fascism.

At 10AM that day, these groups met each other in front of the Galeri Nasional bus station, then marched to a city park near the Embassy. Media persons and a group of police officers were already there. Using many attributes and also direct verbal messages, the anarchists explained the characteristics and the revival dangers of fascism movements in the wider scale, and in specific situational context in Indonesia: about how massive the growing of civil intolerant organizations based on religion, ethnicity and nationalism in Indonesia which are known to have a close relationship with the Government –such as Front Pembela Islam (Islam Defense Front).

There were many comments about the number of the participants which was considered too little if compared to other mass actions several times before, which held to protest and to block a strong candidate of Jakarta Governor who comes from a minority ethnic and religious background. We need to explain simply, that the situation regarding the Governor election (and also the president election two years ago) are big events which significantly affect the spread of intolerant political activities. This electoral practice of political contestation –which will meet its highest level in the middle of February– is considered so rotten and not a good reflection of a healthy democracy in Indonesia. It also will become a bad precedent for political education in Indonesia.

Although in local scale, this Jakarta Governor Election itself actually has made polarized a division among the people on a national scale. It is because Jakarta is the capital city of Indonesia. And the other reason is obviously because the issues that have been ‘played’ in this contestation: ethnicity, racism, and religion issues. There are two big groups who attend this competition. They are the Bhineka group (people who fight for so-called unity in diversity –including the liberals) versus intolerant groups based on ethnic, racial and religious background. The movement scale of these two groups is quite massive. The increased use of internet technology and social media have given rise to a significant impact and massive growth of mass illusions in this proxy war. The state’s interest of hegemony –also with the capitalists, obviously—seems shrouded in this war. There is a big gap between the movements of each groups. The intolerant religious groups have already started their movement for at least 20 years. On the other hand, the democrats and liberals movement –which the leftists always feel sorry about—are very weak at the grassroots level. While the right wing is expanding and taking over the spaces which are not touched by the opposition, instead of fighting back, the opposition got weaker and even drowned in scepticism, pacifism and alienation as a result of the production and consumption pattern of capitalist-economy society, which has made them end up as a silent majority.

This low understanding of class consciousness has been predicted and understood by the anarchists, so we, the anarchists, are not trapped in mass-supporting illusion as shown in the process of planning and organizing. Illusion, which looks so on fire in their fight to get public participation through their supports, slogan and existence which wanted to be seen as mass representation. Instead, the anarchists see this phenomenon as a part of collective work in increasing and growing the class consciousness. Not by becoming a vanguard, but through taking the initiative and working together with autonomous-individuals who are developing their class consciousness via class struggle.

As a part of propaganda process in public space, in the end, this action has finally triggered many responses , comments, debates, discourses about fascism, capitalism and of course anarchism at a national level, which used to be thought of as a taboo thing to talk about. The anarchism movement itself can be counted as a new thing in Indonesia. The anarchist movement had its highest level of introduction in the middle of the 1990s, with the massive growth the of punk music scene, with its ups and downs, and also the betrayal history of the authoritarian left wing party (Partai Rakyat Demokratik). This can be a thing to being studied in history that always taken place within the anarchism movement on an international level. Moreover, we also have to consider the dark history (or propaganda) of the left movement in Indonesia many years ago, which makes almost all Indonesian people have a bad impression of everything that is connected to socialism/communism.

Anarkonesia and the PPAS are completely new groups in the left movement in Indonesia, having been around for just over one year. But, several individuals who are involved in both groups have been involved for many years in the Indonesian left movement. The Antifa Jakarta also started recently after we rebuilt the organizing activities from bottom to top. Considering these facts and situations, these groups together design a movement step-by-step and consolidations which are accountable and responsible. Direct actions in the field are concrete application of theory which always being educated.

The people see and asked to get involved concretely and consciously in organizing activities of protest against fascism and capitalism. From the beginning, the struggle is absolutely based on decentralized and autonomous distribution of power and freedom to the individuals collectively; a free association that connected one another. Direct democracy through meetings and discussions is the soul of this movement. Any fight against repression, no matter how small it is, is a must. Revolution must be picked up and we must do it in daily steps and daily scale. The proletariat workers unite in consciousness to fight and to destroy the exploiting capitalism order and their fascist alliances.

For any question and responses or networking here’s our contacts on Twitter: @anarkonesia @JktPpas @antifaJKT

Long live the movements.
Long live anarchism.

Jakarta, in front of the USA Embassy,
February 4th, 2017.

Continue reading “Jakarta, Indonesia: Report from the Anti-Trump Protest Action at the US Embassy”

Melbourne: Anarchists and homeless people protest outside the home of Lord Mayor Robert Doyle

Around 11PM on the night of Saturday the 25th of February, 2017 a small group of anarchists and homeless people gathered outside the South Melbourne residence of Robert Doyle, the Lord Mayor of Melbourne, to let him know how they felt about the Melbourne City Council’s proposed new laws that aim to criminalise homelessness in the CBD.

A noisy demonstration soon ensued involving the playing of real and improvised musical instruments, loud singing and raucous chanting. Banners and placards were raised reading ‘THE EVICTED HOMELESS AT YOUR DOOR, GET USED TO IT’, ‘WAIT TILL WE FIND YOUR EMPTY SUMMER HOUSE’, ‘NO MORE GOOD NIGHTS SLEEP FOR THE IDLE RICH’ and SLEEPING ROUGH IS NOT A CRIME’.

For once Robert Doyle had nothing to say for himself, most likely because he wasn’t insulated from those he sneeringly dismisses as ‘rabble’ by an army of police and security guards. He spent the entire duration of the protest hiding inside his house with the lights switched off. Some of his well-to-do neighbours did however confront the protesters, apparently half an hour of rowdy party noise before midnight on a Saturday night was just too much to handle for the well-heeled parasites who inhabit this elite neighbourhood.

After about half an hour the local police finally arrived at the scene so the protesters decided to leave, having made their point loud and clear. They wandered off into the night at a leisurely place chanting ‘WE’LL BE BACK!’

After taking 24 hours to recover from the ‘trauma’ of enduring a noisy but completely peaceful protest outside his home, Robert Doyle colluded with his favorite right-wing media outlets the Herald Sun newspaper and radio 3AW to present a highly exagerrated account of the protest that centered himself and his family as innocent victims under siege from ‘well organized protesters’ and ‘thugs’. According to Robert Doyle’s logic it is completely acceptable to send in heavily armed police to violently evict homeless people sleeping in public space but peacefully protesting outside his home is ‘beyond the pale’ (whatever that means).

The protesters have vowed to continue their protests outside Robert Doyle’s home at a future date and time of their choosing.

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