Sydney: Anti-electoral campaign

Over the past two months some anarchists around Sydney mounted a campaign against politics and the democratic process.

This election takes place in a period of historic disillusionment with the political spectacle and the politicians who represent it, and never before have so many parties been on offer, to direct that mistrust back into the electoral process.

We reject this process in its entirety. Elections are a charade to confuse us about where power lies, and how things can be changed. With the following petty acts of anti-political sabotage, we draw a line.

Thousands of anti-electoral posters were pasted up throughout Sydney.

Hundreds of anti-political slogans were painted across the city.

A dozen banners were tied to highway overpasses.

Political advertising of every party was vandalised, or taken down and later burnt.

Party activists caught spreading political propaganda were confronted, harassed and sometimes relieved of their material.

Unlike every political party we do not measure success based on opinion polls or ballots.

We do not seek to promote ourselves as a solution to capitalism, we do not seek to recruit, we do not want power. We offer no promises. We represent no one.

We intend to encourage the spread of class hatred and collective resistance to the bosses, their politicians and the way of life they’ve sold to us.

We desire the total annihilation of capital and the state.

Fighting for ourselves.

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Bangkok: Sentenced for Act of Rebellion, Anarchist Vandal Says Justice Unserved

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11 Though his own case reached its end Wednesday inside the same building he was charged with defacing, a punk musician said the injustice which motivated him is unchanged.

A year after his arrest, 23-year-old Nattaphol Khemngern was fined 4,500 baht and received a two year suspended sentence for painting an anarchy symbol on a sign in front of the Criminal Court. But the musician’s bid for justice for a former bandmate shot dead by a military officer in February, 2015, remains out of reach.

Two anarchy symbols were found painted May 24, 2015, in front of the Criminal Court on Ratchadapisek Road.
Two anarchy symbols were found painted May 24, 2015, in front of the Criminal Court on Ratchadapisek Road.

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‘Free Transport, Full Communism’: vandals encourage attacks on rail staff

CCTV footage of an assault against a ticket inspector  

NOTE FROM DISACCORDS: Funnily enough, we actually don’t know have anything to do with these posters in Sydney, but we are glad to have fans in the city promoting the website.

18 March – Police are hunting a ‘deranged group of thugs’ who are inciting members of the public to physically attack transport officers, ticket inspectors and council rangers.

The cowardly vandals are also urging people to destroy train and bus ticket machines, Opal card readers and parking meters.

Going by the name Free Transport, Full Communism, the anarchist group also encourages public transport passengers to refuse to pay fares.

The group, which police have yet to track down or identify, has been plastering anti-establishment posters near train stations throughout the inner city.

Under the heading “Transport Officers Are Scum” and an image depicting two ticket inspectors with telescopic rifle sights on their faces, the poster refers to an anarchist website called “disaccords” which uploads articles about people rebelling against government.

“Spit venom and throw bricks at Transport Officers, Police, Rangers and every other stooge physically enforcing capitalist law,” it says.

The posters, which have been shared by thousands of Facebook users, have caused alarm among police, state and local government and transport and police unions, who fear people’s lives are at risk.

Rail staff have already been suffering a high rate of violent attacks. About 80 per cent of train guards on Sydney stations have experienced confrontations with violent or aggressive customers, according to a rail union survey.

Head of the Police Transport Command Max Mitchell confirmed rail officials and police in the Joint Transport Intelligence Group were searching for the anarchists.

Transport Minister Andrew Constance was appalled by the posters: “It’s disgusting to see material like this distributed in our community.”

Rail Tram & Bus Union state secretary Alex Claassens described those ­behind the poster campaign as “grubs”.

Police Association president Scott Weber described the use of violence as cowardly. Police have asked the public for help in finding the group.

One of the group’s posters at Newtown Station.

Melbourne: Paint and sledgehammer attack against BAE Systems office

31 Dec – In the final hours of December 2015 we attacked the offices of the defense contractor BAE Systems on River Boulevard in Richmond with paint and sledge hammers.

BAE Systems make billions from war and their technology is responsible for countless civilian deaths worldwide.

This action was carried out as part of Black December, a month of anarchist direct action that was initiated by the anarchist prisoners Nikos Romanos and Panagiotis Argirou in Greece.

We also carried out this action in solidarity with anarchist prisoners held hostage by states worldwide and in solidarity with Indigenous prisoners held hostage by the colonist ‘authorities’ here in so-called ‘Australia’ – all of whom are political prisoners.

Black December is everywhere!

Anarchist Office Refurbishment Cell

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Philipines: Anti-APEC (A)ction

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22 Nov – Local Autonomous Network or LAN is a network of autonomous activists and anarchists that has multiple activities in relation to their various campaigns and initiatives. Most of the affiliated activists whether groups or collectives are active since 1990s which sustained activities such as skills and information sharing through independent publications, video and audio/music recording, workshops, forums and conferences. Urban gardening and application of solar generator system in households and art workshops are one among consistent interests of the activists that are being implemented, improved and shared to their immediate communities. LAN has hosts of network from Manila South to North and nearby provinces of Cavite and Bulacan (Sapang-Palay and Baliwag). During early processes of LANS’s formation autonomous activists from Davao and Leyte were present and actively participated the activities and discussions.

Since 2012, LAN became the venue of solidarity actions of autonomous activists and anarchists in response to social issues such as ecological destructions, hunger, poverty, war, marginalization and among others. LAN conducted actions in solidarity to Occupy movement; it also participated the anti-pork barrel campaign and anti-election protests actions through its distinct activities. It consistently conducts street actions against SONA while staging solidarity action against market institutions like G8.

Once again, Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation or APEC  summit held in the Philippines last November 18 – 19, 2015 in Manila.  It is a multilateral trade agreement in Asia-Pacific region which composed of 21 member-countries including the Philippines. It’s main objective is economic cooperation to facilitate economic growth and development. As part of preparations, the government literally cleaned the area by displacing marginalized communities, homeless families and small vendors. Main roads in Manila were blocked that caused heavy traffic jam in other parts of metropolis and vicinities as far as Cavite. While APEC delegates were enjoying luxurious accommodations, people were braving the violence of congestion and stress caused by extremely heavy traffic jams.

Trade agreements like JPEPA (Japan-Philippines Economic Partnership Agreement) the WTO (World Trade Organisations), ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations), ASEAN-China bilateral agreement; APEC is another instrument of neo-liberal project which the ultimate agenda is to eliminate all trade restrictions. This could mean free movements of products (agricultural and industrial), services, investments, labor which include trash, pollutants, toxic and access to natural resources.

Its adverse effects are: destruction of livelihoods of billions of small producers around the world. As we all know, livelihoods are not designed to compete in the market dominated and controlled by corporations. Privatization is one among great threats; corporations will control public facilities and services such as transportation, health and education, this would mean higher costs which will make social services less or not accessible to millions of people. More productive lands and mining sites will be opened-up and operated by private and foreign investors while fisheries resources will be subjected to more pressure and exploitation. In summary, these trade agreements will results to more massive ecological destruction, more poverty and hunger. Liberalization projects are mainly carried out by corporations backed by financial institutions like International Monetary Fund and World Bank reinforced by state institutions through elitist processes of democracy in Senate and Congress to be implemented by the executive branch armed with Arm forces and police.

On the 18th of November 2015, LAN once again carried-out series of activities which the objective is to send solidarity to all the oppressed and marginalized communities and families. The group peacefully gathered and set-up in Baclaran Church opposite of the “Manilabayan” camp –- a protest of Lumad community (indigenous community); they traveled from Mindanao to Manila to seek justice for killings, abuses and exploitation of their people. There were numbers of lumad have been killed due to multitude of issues of mining and insurgency.

Tarps and propaganda materials were installed while others prepared the area for “Really, Really Free Market” and some were busy preparing things for Food Not Bombs. Some activists initiated public discussions which the main topic is APEC. Nearby, an activist offered hair-cutting service patronize by lumads and city dwellers. One of the tarpaulins which were the biggest one is for the group’s solidarity to struggle of lumad and it calls for the ouster of all armed elements and mining corporations in the lumad territory. The whole process was full of fun and informative the public in general was responsive they participated free market and tasted congee and noodles served by the group. Many lumads came out of the camp and participated and witnessed the event.

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Sydney: Solidarity Actions Against the North Wales Mega Prison

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10 Nov – In response to a call for a week of actions against the North Wales mega prison, some anarchists in Sydney made some small actions.

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The primary contractor involved in the Wrexham Prison Project is Lendlease, an Australian based construction company. In Sydney Lendlease is currently involved in a huge casino project called Barangaroo. The project has major state government backing and is responsible for the social cleansing of Millers Point, the last working working class district in inner Sydney.

Over the past two years there has been consistent resistance to the project and to the eviction and sell-off of the remaining social housing in the area. Numerous buildings in the area have been squatted, and the struggle continues.

Over the first week of November dozens of slogans against Lendlease and its projects were painted on walls across Sydney. Lendlease banners were torn down from their construction sites, repainted and hung from highway bridges.

We wish solidarity to our comrades in Wales and all those fighting for a world without prison.

Neither prisons no casinos.
For revolution.

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Kuala Lumpur: Rumah Api, ‘It’s not just punk rock, it’s punk ideology’

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14 Sept – Amid the dilapidated shophouses of former tin-mining town of Ampang, one building stands out – its walls painted deep black and bold red, filled with graffiti, while the signboard hanging above is covered in black paint.

On the red and black wall is a drawing of two boys shaking hands. One sports a spiky hairdo, spikes on a black jacket and gloves; the other more conventionally dressed in a hoody.

Pulling open the shophouse’s metal shutters reveals a black brick wall with six “no’s” painted on it in bold white letters – No racism, no sexism, no homophobia, no drugs, no alcohol, and no violence.

Walk through the wooden door to the left, and one would find a small stage and space for an audience of 300. Since all of the musical instruments have been confiscated by the police last month, the stage lies empty.

To the left and to the right of this room are walls filled with graffiti – an explosion of colours that is muted by the counterculture atmosphere of this dimly lit room.

This is the place run by a group of punks as a performance space. Welcome to ‘Rumah Api’.

On Aug 28, the eve of the Bersih 4 rally, police surrounded this shophouse, and arrested and detained more than a hundred revellers for more than 60 hours. It was only then that this place known only to those in the scene, was thrown into the limelight.

A community space

Since 2006, Rumah Api has been an important venue for the local punk and underground rock scene. But to the co-operators of Rumah Api, Man Beranak and Ashed, it is more like a community space for the punks.

“Rumah Api is not just a place for music, it is a place to promote punk ideology and attitude.

“Here, our interests go beyond music,” Man said softly, as he spoke to Malaysiakini during an interview in a smoke-filled living room upstairs.

The idea behind Rumah Api is to promote punk culture to mainstream society in hopes of changing society’s negative views towards the subculture.

The 35-year old Man (photo) is a veteran in the community, and looks after the place on a full-time basis. He lives upstairs from Rumah Api together with his wife.

“We want to show to society that although we may look like rebels, we are not the bad guys.”

The area where Rumah Api is located is predominantly ethnic Chinese while the adjacent area is predominantly Malay. In between, the youths with their tall spiky hair and leather jackets stand out as their patronise the local eateries.

“At first they would feel uncomfortable or even frightened by these ‘aliens’. But we approach them and sometimes they have a problem, so we would offer to help them.

“Over time, they realise that although we may look like bad people, especially with that dreadful-looking green or yellow hair, but they know we are actually a bunch of good boys.”

The punk movement started out as a subculture in the 1970’s music scene, using their flamboyant and eccentric styles as a way to oppose the values of mainstream society.

For Ashed, 26, it was less the fashion but the attitude which led him to Rumah Api’s doors. He wishes, above all, that people would understand punks better.

He said punks are not a group living in its own world, but instead are concerned about the downtrodden and hopes that through community service, it can help these oppressed people.

Soup kitchen, free market and more

‘Food Not Bombs’ is one of Rumah Api’s community service initiative.

Every weekend, Ashed and other punk youths would bring a shopping cart to the Ampang market to collect food items that the traders were unable to sell or are about to throw away, to be cooked and distributed to the homeless and the poor.

But even this straightforward noble cause was wrongly portrayed with a local TV channel broadcasting a reporting claiming “skinheads eat garbage”, he said.

“At first when we sifted through the garbage bins at the Ampang market, the locals asked us what we were doing and whether we’re looking for food because we couldn’t afford to pay for it.

“We told them that we want to cook the food for the poor and the homeless. So the traders said, ‘This is excellent. Next time don’t look through the garbage anymore. Come to our stalls and we will give you the ingredients’,” Man said.

Since then, this group of youths would show up at the market and go stall-to-stall just before they close to collect the unwanted food, and never fail to return with a full load in their trolley.

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