resistance - monthly bulletin of the Anarchist Federation (Britain and Ireland)


                            ISSUE THIRTY - OCTOBER 2001




Operation Infinite Profit


Following the recent terrorist attacks in the USA President George Bush and

Prime Minister Tony Blair have declared that the guilty parties must be held


We at resistance couldn’t agree more. The problem we have with them is over who

the guilty parties are. Osama bin Laden? The Taliban? If so, then also the SAS

and CIA who trained them, the British and American States who funded them. When

the separate quests for wealth and power of the western elite and the Taliban

coincided they were best of friends. Now they have diverged they will fight each


Bush has declared that the atrocity has provided “an opportunity to wage war

against terrorism”. Conveniently, it has also provided the opportunity for Bush

and Blair to boost their pitiful popularity ratings. It provides the opportunity

for them to distract people from the effects of the ever deepening recession

through a patriotism which opposes the view of society fractured along class

lines. The airline industry bosses are using the attack as an excuse to do what

they have been trying to do for months - totally restructure the global

industry. More than 100,000 people booted out of work already with more to

follow. Patriotism and ‘doing your bit’ will be used to pacify those falling on

the economic scrap-heap of a worldwide recession.

And as anarchists have always said: “War is the health of the state”. The budget

and prestige of the military will be hugely boosted by this conflict. It also is

the perfect excuse to crack down on internal dissent (anti-capitalists and

anarchists are undoubtedly in the firing line), compulsory ID cards seem certain

to be brought in and there will be even more powers for stifling dissent under

the guise of ‘anti-terrorism’.

It is important that we all cut through the fine words and smart images of the

world leaders. Their friends in the media are bombarding us with images of them

as caring people with our interests and the interests of humanity as a whole at

heart. Nonsense, they never hesitate to cut our standard of living, or drop

bombs on innocent people in other countries if there is money and power in it

for them. We must see them for what they are and remain focused on what is

really going on.

Just like any other war, this one will involve the demonisation of one man -

Osama bin Laden - as an excuse for murdering thousands of innocent civilians.

Just like any other war, the leaders will be as fit and healthy at the end as at

the beginning - remember all of the crap about the Gulf War being to ‘get’

Saddam Hussein? There he is 10 years later, still lording it up while his people


In the same way that the terrorist assaults on Americans have worked in Bush and

Blair’s favour, so their military response will work in the favour the Islamic

fundamentalism of Osama bin Laden and the Taliban who have been chosen as the

guilty parties. An assault on Afghanistan will result in much of the Muslin

world falling in behind the Taliban.

A war set up by the great and good of our society as a battle between East and

West, Barbarians and Civilisation, Dictators and Democracy, Islam and

Christianity, will suit leaders on all sides very well indeed. After all, there

is nothing better than a ‘foreign’ enemy to strengthen the dominant ideology and

keep the masses back at home in line.

Terrorism, war, recession and mass redundancies are all products of the system.

They will remain with us for as long as capitalism does.                 

On the day the first bombs fall protest againstthe war at 6pm in Trafalgar







The international airline industry had been going through a major shake up

before the slaughter at the World Trade Centre and Pentagon. As reported in

recent issues of Resistance plenty of strikes were going on due to attempted

sackings by Airline companies. Ansett (Australian), Aer Lingus (Ireland),

Lufthansa (Germany), Alitalia (Italy), Aeromexico, Asian Airlines, Aeroflot

(Russia), Air Liberte (France), Sabena (Belgian), KLM Dutch Airlines, have all

had strikes in the last few months. Now panicking bosses are ditching workers

like dangerous ballast, hoping to save their skins and profits from a hard


The following sackings have taken place already, or have been announced as

imminent:Boeing - 30,000, British Aerospace owner AMR - 20,000, United Airlines

20,000 workers, Honeywell avionics manufacturer - 12,000, Continental - 12,000

workers, US Airways -11,000, Virgin Atlantic - 1,200 workers, Aer lingus – 600,

British Airways – 7000, Northwest Airlines – 10,000, Aloha Airlines – 250.

These staff reductions will allow airline bosses to reduce levels of air

traffic, and so orders for new planes, which will have a knock on effect

throughout the travel industry (manufacturers, ground crew, baggage handlers,

ticket sellers, travel agents). People remaining in the industry will see wages

frozen or reduced, and benefits slashed as the bosses make sure that workers

carry all of the burden of the loss of income.

It is very clear that thousands more workers will be sacked over the months

ahead. These mass sackings will happen across many industries world-wide. But

will these attacks on workers be met with resistance? Will strikes and other

forms of resistance be fought on international lines as we hope? We think this

depends on a number of key points. The first is how far worker’s allow

themselves to be controlled by the trade unions. The unions and political

parties that attempt to represent workers will be shouting the ‘anti-terrorist’

propaganda as loud as the rest of the bosses. Keeping fucked-off workers in line

is the role of unions within the structure of democracy.  As anarchists we want

autonomous methods of struggle to develop, a movement that breaks out of the

restrictive ideas and apparatus of the Left, and potentially challenges the war

machine and the system as a whole.

The second hurdle to be overcome will be jingoistic flag waving in the name of

‘anti-terrorism’. We are all anti-terrorist! It is important to realise that

Governments are the biggest terrorists of all, and that support for them through

the irrationality of patriotism is support for further war-mongering. We must

not let politicians con us with patriotism and lead us in to the acceptance of

war, job cuts and attacks on wages and conditions, as part of being a ‘good

citizen’ - making patriotic victims of yet another capitalist onslaught.     






The manufacturers of weapons will be receiving plenty of orders right now and in

the future. Major weapons manufactures such as BAE Systems (UK), Lockheed Martin

(US), Boeing (US), Raytheon (US), General Dynamics (US), Northrop Grumman (US),

EADS (France), Thales (France), United Technologies (US) and TRW (US) will be

rubbing their hands with delight at the prospect of war.

Share values increased for many of these companies immediately after the attacks

in New York and Washington. Above are the World’s top ten weapons manufacturers

but there are plenty of UK based firms employing thousands of workers.

Will workers in the booming sectors of weapons and related industries show

solidarity with people laid off in other areas? Many of these companies are

involved in both civil aviation and weapons production. This means that

anti-layoff strikes could involve several areas of the same company.  Any

industrial action at the moment will help sabotage this Labour administration’s

war effort. That would be anti-war action through the class war.






As the bosses try to get us to wave their flag and knuckle down to a war economy

in the name of freedom, we take our regular look at the history of revolt:

opposition to the Vietnam war.

In the 1960s and 70s a generation of young people began to reject the rubbish

they had been fed at school about America being the champion of freedom and

democracy. As many looked deeper into the reasons why America was in Vietnam,

they began to see what the real problem was: an economic and political system

that adopted policies that were wanted by the few while the ordinary people, the

working class suffered.  In other words the real enemy was capitalism. This

realisation soon gave way to anger and rage at the entire system.

This awareness led people to look for alternatives. Unfortunately the

alternatives were very limited. Some advocated ‘turning on, tuning in and

dropping out’. People experimented with drugs and alternative life styles,

setting up communes or living rough on the streets of the city. Others in their

rejection of American capitalism supported unquestioningly the countries that

claimed to be socialist. Ho Chi Mihn was idolised and activity against the war

became activity in support of the Vietnamese ‘communist’ regime.

Various factions emerged based primarily on the support of a particular regime

or ideologue. Pro-Albanians debated with pro-Soviets as Trotskyists clashed with

Maoists. They also romanticised all ‘Third World’ national liberation struggles,

putting them forward as the vanguard in the fight against world capitalism.


And mutiny in the army...

 Resistance among the American military was a major but little publicised factor

in the ending of the war. In June 1971 Colonel Robert D. Heinl wrote in the

Armed Forces Journal: “ By every conceivable factor our army that remains in

Vietnam is in a state approaching collapse, with individual units avoiding or

having refused combat, murdering their officers and non-commissioned officers,

drug ridden and dispirited when not near mutinous”.

Attacks on officers (‘fraggings’) rose from 126 in 1969 to 271 in 1970. In 1968

there were 68 recorded incidents of combat refusal. By 1969 entire units were

refusing orders and by 1970 there were 35 separate refusals in the Air Cavalry

alone. Desertion and AWOL (Absent Without Leave) became epidemic with one GI

leaving every three minutes at the height of the war.

Lets hope that in this latest war rebels at home and in the armed forces will

also make a formidable enemy for the capitalists.






The current outbreak in hostilities between two different ruling elites (Western

and Taliban) is yet another manifestation of the greed and power-lust of the

enemies of humanity. How will those apparently on the side of humanity respond?

Past experience leaves little room for optimism.

The Left, as ever, will attempt to muddy the waters (anti-imperialism, national

liberation, support of this or that faction). Part of the politics of

authoritarian groups is making situations that are easily comprehensible

infinitely complicated, so leaving the political strategy to those clued up

enough on the correct ideology (Marxism,

Leninism, Trotskyism, Maoism, etc.). The job of the party members is not to

understand, but to learn a few slogans and follow the orders of their wise

leaders. During the bombing of Yugoslavia the various left groups all chose

their favourite army to back, though some even managed to switch allegiance in

the middle of the conflict.

Pacifists will be calling for a non-violent response, but within the framework

of the capitalist state. Asking states to be non-violent is like telling the

tide to stop coming in. It’s not enough just to ask the state to be nicer - the

state must be destroyed. During the gulf war pacifists called for sanctions

instead of bombs against Iraq. These sanctions have now killed hundreds of

thousands more than the bombs ever did!


Are anarchist different?

Anarchists claim to be different. We realise that the biggest weapon the

ruling class have got is not this or that gun, tank or missile, but the power

over our minds, over what we think. Disinformation amplified by the media and

mystification through religion and patriotism add up to formidable tools. These

aim to prevent us from understanding what’s really going on in our lives and the

world and how we should respond to it. So as anarchists we aim to raise our

level of understanding and encourage others to do likewise.

Will Britain’s anarchists rise to the challenge of this war, in words and deeds,

by putting across a clear revolutionary analysis of the situation? Will there be

attempts to get a strong, aggressive, class based message across to working

class people? Will we make people think?

The response from many anarchists to previous wars has been at best confused,

and many just retreated into the anarchist/anti-capitalist social scene and

spent endless hours hand wringing and arguing among themselves in irrelevant

meetings that no sane person would go within a mile of.

How ridiculous that every time a war starts the same 20-30 odd people get

together in London to hold ‘No War But The Class War’ (NWBTCW) meetings. A fine

slogan, for sure, but who else hears it beyond the walls in which they meet? Are

we brave enough to decide a clear message and take it out onto the streets?

During the Gulf War one meeting of ‘NWBTCW’ had to spend ages deciding whether

to even go on an anit-war march. It’s difficult to think of a more pointless way

to spend time.

And what of the so-called ‘anti-capitalist’ scene? Will it develop into an

anti-war movement? When bombs were falling on Yugoslavia the political weakness

of this scene was clearly exposed. First there was hopeless confusion, as there

was no simple ‘good guys vs. bad guys’ to support. Soon after attempts at

analysis were abandoned and the war was to a large extent ignored.

‘Anti-capitalism’ is a strange blend of Christians, Liberals, Left-wing parties,

environmentalists, pacifists,

do-gooders and occasional anarchists.  It never has, and never will have, any

relevance to the majority of people. It has no foundation in workplaces, no

roots in communities, and the times it has looked most interesting are when

already existing social movements have temporarily got involved.


Make war on the ruling class!

The people involved in ‘anti-capitalism’ have got to decide. More of the same

‘celebrations of the diversity of our struggles’, or the realisation that this

is a directionless and politically inept  movement with no hope of contributing

to the creation of a free and equal society?

The can be only one response to capitalist war - a clear call for a war against

the rulers and would be rulers of all states. To end war we must end capitalism.







As the Western leaders prepare for war struggles around the world continue...


Three hundred people marched through Athy, Ireland recently in support of

workers at  Peerless Rugs (PR) who have been on strike against bosses since

July. PR announced closure of their plant, and have refused to pay out promised

redundancies to workers, declaring itself bankrupt in spite of the fact that

they have merely transferred work to plants elsewhere.

  Workers responded however by occupying their factory, catching their

frightened union by surprise. In the process, PR boss Martin Buckley was trapped

inside his office for several hours before being rescued by local police.

The occupation, a typical anarchist tactic, has massive support from local

people while even some local businesses have shown solidarity with the workers.

In the meantime, worried union leaders while publicly expressing support for the

occupation are contriving with bosses for a more ‘sensible’ resolution to the

stand-off, one of which will inevitably involve persuading workers to end their

occupation in return for  meaningless concessions that will probably never be



One thousand people displaced by the Three gorges Dam project in China rose up

after being denied compensation for the loss of their homes. The Beijing

government is believed to have already moved over half a million people and

plans to flood 2 cities and over 100 towns by 2009.

Those who have been deported have become sickened by the large-scale corruption

of the government. Fights broke out with police at Yongzhou, where people have

been relocated. 1,000 demonstrators threatened to commandeer a train to go back

to their home of Chongqing after demanding immediate payment of a £200 living


£40 million of the £1.4 billion ear marked for resettlement payment has already

been embezzled, the Government itself admitted.


WALTHAMSTOW anarchist group now have a new phone number. To get involved tel:

07810 28889




To find out why anarchists reject both terrorism and pacifism read:

‘Anarchism and violence’ by Errico Malatesta  available for £1 from London

Anarchist Federation.




Genoa News:

There are a number of Italians and 15 Germans facing serious charges under the

Italian anti-terrorism act. They have all either been released on bail or are

expecting to be bailed soon. Donations towards their defence should be paid into

the EA Berlin Sonder-Konto, account holder: Klaus Schmidt, Postgiro Berlin bank,

sortcode 100 100 00, Account number 206-10-106.

For more info: Anarchist Committee for Defence and Solidarity (based in Genoa)



Anti-fascist Prisoner Support:

There are several anti-fascists in prison in Sweden at the moment. Swedish AFA

are calling for donations towards their support: PostGirot account 276 02-2,

account holder Nisse Laets Minnesfond, label the payment ‘Antifa Solidaritet’,

sortcode: PGS ISESS, address: SE-105 00, Stockholm, Sweden. Contact them for

further information via Solidaritygroup GBG, c/o Syndikalistiskt Forum, Box

7267, 40235 Gothenburg, Sweden.


Other News:

Jeffrey Luers, aka Free, who was arrested last year with Craig Marshall

(Critter) in Eugene, Oregon on various charges relating to arson, received a

sentence of nearly 23 years. An appeal is underway. Support is vital so write to

him: #13797671, 82911 Beach Access Road, Two Rivers Correctional Facility,

Umatilla, Oregon 97882, USA, or contact the Legal Defence Committee, PO Box

11922, Eugene Oregon 97440, USA and make a donation towards the appeal.


Craig Marshall (Critter), #13797662, EOCI, 2500 Westgate, Pendleton, OR 97801,

USA. (Serving 5 years 5 months).


Eduardo Garcia Macias: Eduardo will have been in jail for a year in November. A

Spanish member of the Anarchist Black Cross (ABC), he is being framed for

sending letterbombs to rightwing newspapers and for some bomb attacks. Three of

the four judges dealing with the four different cases have already dismissed

their cases, and Eduardo would be free, except that the fourth judge is

insisting on remand and the trial.

The campaign to free him is growing so show your support, contact him: Modulo 3

C.P, Madrid V Soto del Real Apdo. 200 28791 Soto del Real, Madrid, Spain. And

his support campaign via:, or Spanish ABC (see contacts list).


Mark Barnsley: After being shunted to HMP Wakefield, getting into trouble for

refusing prison slave labour, and a number of noise demos taking place outside

the prison and an action on the prison labour company, Mark’s been moved to HMP

Armley, 2 Gloucester Terrace, Armely, Leeds LS12 2TJ.


for more info on prisoners support contact: Brighton ABC, c/o 6 Tilbury Place,

Brighton, BN2 2GY.

or visit:


See also the AF prisoners pages at: