Greece unrest updates thread

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Sotev
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Dec 11 2008 07:47

I have to say that many students not only have taken up the 'program' so to speak, of the 'extremist' anarchist groups, but pretty much ignore the violent yet 'official', with open calls, (ie. led by anarchists or university radical students) demos/blocks. I like this.

Quote:
from http://teacherdudebbq.blogspot.com/

In the morning I went to the centre to cover the march however what caught my attention was the parallel march which high school students had organised to protest the killing of Alexandros Grigoropoulos on Saturday. They simply ignored the other march and then went their own way. Cautiously, I followed as they were in no mood to be filmed or photgraphed as a hapless camera man learnt to his cost when they smashed his equipment.

They went on round the centre setting fire to rubbish bins and eventually ended up outside the central police station in Thessaloniki where there protested shouted anti-police slogans. Later on the mood changed and they started to stone the officers there. I saw kids as young as seven lobbing pieces of paving stone and rocks.

I spoke to many people from thessalonika, who were completely unaware of this.

Sotev
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Dec 11 2008 08:28

THE PHANTOM OF LIBERTY
ALWAYS COMES WITH A KNIFE BETWEEN THE TEETH

The ne plus ultra of social oppression is being shot at in cold blood.
All the stones, torn from the pavement and thrown at the shields of cops or at the façades of commercial temples, all the flaming bottles that traced their orbits in the night sky, all the barricades erected on city streets, dividing our areas from theirs, all the bins of consumer trash which, thanks to the fire of revolt, came to be Something out of Nothing, all the fists raised under the moon, are the arms giving flesh, as well as true power, not only to resistance but also to freedom. And it is precisely the feeling of freedom that, in those moments, remains the sole thing worth betting on: that feeling of forgotten childhood mornings, when everything may happen, for it is ourselves, as creative humans, who have awoken, and not those future productive human machines known as “obedient subject,” “student,” “alienated worker,” “owner,” “family wo/man.” The feeling of facing the enemies of freedom - of no longer fearing them.

It is thus for good reason that those who wish to get on with their business as if nothing happens, as if nothing has ever happened, are worried. The phantom of liberty always comes with the knife between the teeth, with the violent will to break the chains, all those chains that turn life into a miserable repetition, serving to reproduce the dominant social relations. Yet from Saturday, December 6, the cities of this country are not functioning properly: no shopping therapy, no open roads leading us to work, no news on the government’s forthcoming recovery initiatives, no carefree switching from one lifestyle TV show to another, no evening drives around Syntagma Sq. etc., etc., etc. These days and nights do not belong to merchants, TV commentators, ministers and cops: These days and nights belong to Alexis!

As surrealists we were on the streets from the start, along with thousands of others, in revolt and solidarity; for surrealism was born with the breath of the street, and does not intend to ever abandon it. After the mass resistance before the State murderers, the breath of the street has become even warmer, even more hospitable and creative than before. It is not in our competence to propose a general line to this movement. Yet we do assume our responsibility in the common struggle, as it is a struggle for freedom. Without having to agree with all aspects of such a mass phenomenon, without being partisans of blind hatred and of violence for its own sake, we accept that this phenomenon exists for a reason.

Let’s not allow this flaming breath of poetry to loosen or die out.
Let’s turn it into a concrete utopia: to transform the world and to transform life!
No peace with cops and their masters!
All in the streets!
Those who cannot feel the rage may as well shut up!

Athens Surrealist Group, December 2008

Sotev
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Dec 11 2008 08:32

http://anarchiststrategy.blogspot.com/

updates, info, photos --some not seen elsewhere--. in english.

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altemark
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Dec 11 2008 09:04

http://athens.indymedia.org/front.php3?lang=el&article_id=939262
Pictures from the protest outside the swedish embassy yesterday

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Leo
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Dec 11 2008 09:32

So how did the strike go? Did workers go back to work? Did the youth and the strikers come into contact and display solidarity with each other?

Quote:
At this point and after listening to both sides of the debate, lets all agree if anyone no matter how close we feel to them, asks to be banned, we shall grant their request right away. Agreed?

They certainly weren't the only ones talking about it:

http://libcom.org/news/germany-high-school-students-strike-14112008

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jef costello
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Dec 11 2008 11:16

There are also strikes by schoolchildren in France, I've not got much in the way of decent information right now but I'll update you if I get a chance. At least one university is blockaded and several schools. Not sure why it's happening it's got nothing to do with Greece as far as I can see. There are also sporadic strikes across the country, wildcats as far as I can see.

I don't speak Greece but according to a French site this shows a police commander telling another to send in the nazi group to attack. The link seems to have gone dead now though. There's also an article with pictures showing armed fascists with police on Greek indymedia.

Is anyone interested in the statement of Eleftheriaki Sindikalistiki Enosi (Libertarian syndicalist union, no idea of their politics or if they're actually a union) Also got a translation of a communique from the Athens polytechnical college from two days ago. They're in French so I'm not translating them unless anyone actually wants them.

French sites are reporting two stabbings yesterday, an immigrant and a 19 year old girl.
They're also reporting three arrests at a London solidarity action at the embassy.

This is the flyer for a french solidarity action for yesterrday, not heard back anything about it so either everybody got arrested or nobody actually went.

At least 9 arrests at demonstration in Brussels

Peaceful protest and demonstration was held with a mixture of nationalities, a Greek flag was burned. A group of twelve, masked up, left to go home and were attacked by police. Arrested but later released without charge it seems.

This site has lots of updates and info but is mostly about the 7th december, it's got a lot of pictures, some of them quite good. It's got a photo of the occupied Berlin embassy but also claims that the London Embassy is occupied which I didn't think it was.

There's some english info someone else can go through if they have the time:
http://balkans.puscii.nl/?q=content/15-years-old-anarchist-killed-cops-center-athens-reports-video-murder-anda-video-theathens-r
http://athens.indymedia.org/front.php3?lang=en&article_id=933218
http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2008/12/414628.html
http://de.indymedia.org/2008/12/235119.shtml
http://mikeely.wordpress.com/2008/12/07/across-greece-streetfighting-youth-confront-police-murder/#comment-9739
http://uk.reuters.com/article/worldNews/idUKTRE4B603Z20081209?pageNumber=1&virtualBrandChannel=0

kbranno
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Dec 11 2008 11:44

Here's an update of what has happened so far today. I got this from a Cypriot comrade who got it from a Greek messageboard.

The latest from greece...

UPDATE, 8:08 The town hall of the suburb of Agios Dimitrios in Athens is now occupied by anarchists. Heavy clashes between police and anarchists at the Polytechnic during the night; one comrade injured. The occupation remains.

A kid of their age was assassinated. They took the streets to protest only to have tear gas thrown at them, to be violently arrested, to be shot at. Yet hour by hour, day by day, the school students on the streets become more militant and determined. So far they have attacked more than six police stations across Athens. Yesterday in the suburb of Petroupoli, around 100 of them attacked the local police station, smashing it up with sticks and stones. A few banks down the same road were also attacked. Until yesterday night at least 100 schools in the country were occupied by their students. This number is expected to jump up today, when most students are supposed to return to their schools for the first time after Alexandros’ death. Whether they chose to do so or not could largely determine the future of the revolt. Luckily, they seem to have no intention to return to normalcy: For today, 11.12, the students are planning decentralised road blockades across Athens. For tomorrow, Friday, demonstrations are called by university students in Athens and Thessaloniki - universities are also expected to be occupied in large numbers today and tomorrow. The Economics University anarchist occupation has decided to reach out to the students; newspapers, posters and leaflets are being printed right now, to be distributed to schools across the city asap. The future of our struggle seems to be dependent on them and I am confident we are in good hands.

...............................................................................................................

The pig who shot Alexis is reported to have said this

"the murderer mentioned at his apology that he knew Alexis and that the kid was in some incidents at a...water polo match and that he was spending a lot of time at Exarchia and had a leaning to a "Left wing and not appropriate behaviour"!!!! "

Here's a pic of a recent Pana v Olympiakos water polo game, so you get the idea..

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altemark
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Dec 11 2008 12:11

jef: I would like to hear about the statement from ESE!

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jef costello
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Dec 11 2008 13:13

My apologies for the rhetoric, I've tried to translate it as faithully as possible, french anarchists have a habit of writing like this so a direct translation from the greek might be a bit different.

Quote:
Class struggle against the bosses and the state who exploit and murder us.

The murder of 16 year old Alexandros Grigoropoulos by the roving assassins of the Greek Police was not a chance incident, nor an isolated one. In the last few months alone Toni Onoua in Kalamaria, Mohamed Asraf in St Panteleimonas and Maria Koulouri in Leukimi have all died as a result of polie actions. All this isn't the result of a few hot-headed policemen but the results of the general tacticcs of the repressive forces. Those who continue to talk of chance or bad luck are not just ridiculous they are accomplices of the system.
The State assassins have set the scene for general repression across the country. In the last few months those who have gone out into the streets, who have fought, who have demanded, who have challenged the peace between the classes have been the victim of gratuitous violence at the hands of the state. Tear gas and chemical weapons have been the more lenient weapons used to repress them. Often there have been beatings, arrest and even torture of those held in police custody.
Faith in the false well-being that capitalism promised has ben destroyed by the economic crisis we, the workers, have been experiencing these last few years as bosses and the state illegally attack the world of work and brutally repress any voices of protest. The democracy of the bosses, of the industrialists and of the authoritarians doesn't merely resemble dictatorship, it is dictatorship.
The responses of the working class to the murder of this schoolchild were direct as we went out and joined together in the streets.
Any reaction to this is justified and the accumulated violence that we accept everyday, will be thrown back at those who practise it every day.
We respond with the response of the class against the state and the bosses because it is the only path that we'll let ourselves follow, the only one that we know.

LET OUR ANGER LEAD TO A POPULAR INSURRECTION

Link to french article

Swedish Embassy demo:

baboon
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Dec 11 2008 14:14

There are five million university graduates in China every year. Millions more in Asia, Europe and the Americas.: educated working class youth facing unemployment at the same time as workers, mostly their parents, friends, and relations, are facing job cuts and economic hardship.
Riots are a totally inadequate response and is not the ground of effective class struggle whose need is organisation and general assemblies. Also its function should be to bring the petty bourgeoisie behind it - anarchism should be aware of that. The perspective was well laid out by French youth and workers during the upheavals of 2006 that eventually succeeded in pushing back the bourgeoisie. Some problems arise from these riots for the Greek bourgeoisie. But it doesn't advance the cause of the revolution. What are the perspectives from the riots?

aloeveraone
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Dec 11 2008 14:54

A bit more information on the demos in Spain here and here.

Apparently 9 Spanish citizens were arrested in Madrid. One Greek citizen and another foreigner without papers were arrested in Barcelona.

Has anyone kept a running tally of arrests? Obviously it's going to be a while before we get full numbers from inside Greece, but as for solidarity demos abroad I've counted:

62 in Copenhagen
9 in Madrid
2 in Barcelona
2 (maybe 3?) in London

Though I thought I read something about arrests in Italy...

Any word on charges?

Seems like solidarity can be strengthened even more if we can get a coordinated ABC campaign going.

woundedhobo
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Dec 11 2008 16:41

How do Greek anarchists feel about rape? Should rapists be shot, put in prison, parachuted onto a tropical island that is an autonomous community of rapists, rehabilitated at anarchist summer camp? What is the process of their trial? Is there a trial? Or is it a product of capitalist society?

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Steven.
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Dec 11 2008 16:48
woundedhobo wrote:
How do Greek anarchists feel about rape? Should rapists be shot, put in prison, parachuted onto a tropical island that is an autonomous community of rapists, rehabilitated at anarchist summer camp? What is the process of their trial? Is there a trial? Or is it a product of capitalist society?

I don't understand this question. But regardless, this is off topic and if anyone does want to discuss this they should start a new thread.

Caiman del Barrio
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Dec 11 2008 17:10
aloeveraone wrote:
2 (maybe 3?) in London

I was told 5 by someone who went.

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Steven.
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Dec 11 2008 19:45
aloeveraone wrote:

Has anyone kept a running tally of arrests? Obviously it's going to be a while before we get full numbers from inside Greece, but as for solidarity demos abroad I've counted:

actually it would be really useful if someone compiled a list of all the international solidarity actions for an article for a new section. If someone was to do this it would be great! (Just click submit content - news)

wangwei
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Dec 11 2008 20:12

I'm thinking of this historical moment in Greece, and looking for some historical parallels, and I'm thinking of the national liberation movement against the Turkish Empire (where Lord Byron died) being a fundamental moment in the rise of capitalism. I'm loving the irony of the fact that the birthplace of modern "Western Civilization", the fundamental ideology of capitalism, is now functioning as the birthplace of an alternative vision of society. Isn't that a nice allusion to the birth of the new society taking place within the womb of the old.

Here's a snipet from the PLP's position on the struggle in Greece:

http://progressivelabor.890m.com/index.php/challenge-newspaper/browse-by-category/europe/41-europe/754-greece-in-flames-outraged-workers-a-youth-rebel-fight-back

Greece in Flames: Outraged Workers & Youth Rebel, Fight Back
Written by challenge

Quote:
The cops claimed Alexandros and other youths were throwing rocks at police cars. But the youth were just shouting anti-police slogans.
Quote:
And in recent years under the right-wing government, police brutality has intensified. The cops have especially brutalized immigrant workers, particularly in Athens’ police stations.
Quote:
Meanwhile, in Germany a dozen demonstrators occupied the Greek consulate in Berlin, replacing the Greek flag with a banner proclaiming Greece “a murderer state.”
Quote:
The opposition Panhellenic Socialist Movement (Pasok) and the reformist “Communist” Party, both with lots of influence in the union movement, are using the rebellions — the biggest since World War II here — to push for an electoral defeat of the right-wing New Democracy government, but without changing the capitalist essence of Greek society.
Quote:
Amid the growing capitalist economic crisis and sharpening inter-imperialist rivalry leading to wider wars, reformist electoral politics won’t extricate workers and youth from the hole into which capitalism has driven us. The lesson from these rebellions and strikes is to fight for a revolutionary communist leadership, capable of uniting workers Europe-wide and globally, to transform society into a world without any bosses, police terror or economic crises in which workers pay for the bankers’ bailouts.

Some good stuff here, and there's something I haven't read about what happened in Germany. I'm very inspired by these Anarchists.

Quote:
Babboon: But it doesn't advance the cause of the revolution. What are the perspectives from the riots?

I cannot disagree with you more. How can students organizing with workers and the undocummented in a clash with the state apparatus not advance the cause of social revolution. In The Conquest of Bread Kropotkin clearly states that "anarchism leads to communism." Now, I'm by no means saying that a sponteous insurrection can lead to a Communist society without a Mass Pary/Organization (not arguing terminology here) of millions organizing to directly to a communist society, but there is a direct relation to the anarchist weakening and attacking the actual structures of the state.

The question of "why can't we do that here?" will be on many people's lips. The American ruling class is doing virtually everything in their power to keep this insurrection out of the conscious of the working class.

I'm in solidarity with the actions of the brave Greek revolutionaries who took to the street in order to discipline the state. Right on!

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Steven.
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Dec 11 2008 20:22

As usual, wangwei, I think you're getting a bit carried away. But hey. However, please don't post too much spam from the PLP.

raw
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Dec 11 2008 22:24

Bristol Greek Riot Update:

Over 30 police vehicles, both marked and unmarked, were attacked in Bristol last night by anarchists with catapults. 2 sites were targetted, Broomhill Road in Brislington and Poplar Way in Avonmouth and extensive damage done. Seems like Big Brother can't be watching everywhere.
We will always turn our grief and tears for our murdered comrades into rage and attacks against the enemy. From the banlieus of Paris to the streets of London and Athens, police bullets and violence against the poor and those who oppose them will always be the same. They will get away with impunity in the courts, but not on our streets. For every attack a militant response, and for international solidarity. Strength and respect to the rioters in Greece and everywhere. Against all authority. Find your own way to fight back, but do it now!
http://publish.indymedia.org.uk/en/2008/12/415106.html

Also:

On Sunday on Resonance FM, 4pm live from the Streets of Athens!! Don't miss it! Sotev if you want to do a short interview that would be good. PM an email.

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Dec 11 2008 22:29
raw wrote:
Bristol Greek Riot Update:

Over 30 police vehicles, both marked and unmarked, were attacked in Bristol last night by anarchists with catapults.

I'm getting a strange sense of déjà vu...

MT
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Dec 11 2008 23:36

On Tuesday, 9th of December, approximately at 6:30 pm on Main Square, Bratislava, Slovak Republic, about 40 people came to express their protest and anger against the murder of Alexandros and to memorialize this young boy. There was a transparence laying on the stairs of The Embassy of Greece saying “6.12.2008, Athens, 16-years-old Alexandros Andreas Grigoropoulos, murdered by a cop! R.I.P./A.C.A.B.“ Two activists have attached a banner with a slogan “Punishment for the assassin“ in Greek on the entrance door. We also put a wreath and have lighted tenths of candles together neer the stairs and the photography of young Alexandros.

Alexandros - We will never forget!

***
Την Τρίτη γύρω στις 18.30 στην οδό Hlavné nám. στην Μπρατισλάβα, πρωτεύουσα της Σλοβακίας συγκεντρώθηκαν περίπου 40 άτομα, για να διαμαρτυρηθούν και διαδηλώσουν την οργή τους για την άγρια δολοφονία του νεαρού Αλέξανδρου και να τιμήσουν την μνήμη του. Στις σκάλες της Ελληνικής Πρεσβείας αναρτήθηκε πανώ με την αναγραφή: Αθήνα, 06.12.2008, 16 χρονος Αλέξανδρος Ανδρέας Γρηγορόπουλος δολοφονήθηκε από μπάτσο! R.I.P. / A.C.A.B.
Δύο νεαροί διαδηλωτές κρέμασαν στην κεντρική είσοδο της πρεσβείας πανώ στην ελληνική γλώσσα με την αναγραφή: ΤΙΜΩΡΙΑ ΣΤΟΝ ΔΟΛΟΦΟΝΟ, κατέθεσαν στεφάνια και άναψαν αρκετά κεριά γύρω από την φωτογραφία του νεαρού Αλέξανδρου.
Μοιράστηκαν φυλλάδια, τα οποία εξηγούσαν τι συνέβηκε και ποιός ήταν ο νεαρός Αλέξανδρος.Τηρήθηκε σιγή εις μνήμη του ανθρώπου που σε νεαρή ηλικία ποθούσε και ονειρευόταν καλύτερο κόσμο και ελεύθερη κοινωνία, αλλά ο αλλάζων εκπρόσωπος της εξουσίας αστυνομικός Επαμεινώντας Κορκονέας του έκοψε το νήμα της ζωής με ψυχρό τρόπο.

Αλέξανδρος δεν ξεχνούμε!

Photos: http://picasaweb.google.com/punkcoremotor/PietnaAkciaVBratislaveNaPoEsZavraDenHoAlexandrosa#5278193448511268498

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jef costello
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Dec 12 2008 00:26

The CNT-F has called a solidarity deomstration at the embassy at 17:30 on Friday. They've also issued a communique but I haven't had time to translate it yet.

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Dec 12 2008 02:27

There was a demo at the embassy here at lunchtime. Photos + report should be up on Aotearoa Indymedia soon, I assume. I couldn't go unfortunately sad

If anyone is going to compile the list of soli demos (I don't have time), there's heaps of info on them at SlackBastard which will help.

Some news from SB re: an action in Melbourne:

Quote:
Melbourne Anarchists redecorate Greek Consulate-General, hoist black flag …

In the early hours of Thursday the 11th of December, anarchists redecorated the Greek Consulate-General in Melbourne, Australia. The building was painted with slogans in Greek, including ‘The State Assassinates’ (To Kpatos Dolophoni) and ‘The State is the enemy of the people’ (To Kpatos einai ekthros tou laou), as well as ‘RIP Alexandros’ and circle As. A black flag was hoisted on the flag pole — unfortunately, the highly flammable Greek flag had been taken in for the night.

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robot
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Dec 12 2008 13:38

A brief update on the solidarity demonstrations for our Greek comrades: Protests took place at Berlin, Bielefeld, Bremen, Dortmund, Düsseldorf, Dresden, Erlangen, Frankfurt/Main, Hamburg, Hannover, Jena, Konstanz, Kiel, Köln, Krefeld, Leipzig, Magdeburg, Minden, München, Nürnberg, Oldenburg, Osnabrück, Potsdam, Ravensburg, Rostock, Saarbrücken, Schneverdingen so far.


The picture shows the demonstration at Frankfurt/Main, just in front of the consulate of the state of Greece.

A second demonstration within three days at Frankfurt/Main took place friday night. More than 500 people took to the streets and were attacked various times by riot police and police thugs without uniform. A couple of police cars got damaged when people fought back. There were also some more towns, were police tried to stop or to attack demonstrations.

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Dec 12 2008 05:52

Report + photos from today's demo @ Greek embassy in Wellington, New Zealand

I wasn't able to go unfortunately.

fondis
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Dec 12 2008 07:47

The murder of Alexandros Grigoropoulos was not an isolated incident. Police wrongdoing, abuse and murder have been going on for a long time. In 1985 a young anarchist was murdered by police... so many similarities!

Michalis Kaltezas (1970 - November 17, 1985) was a student who was killed during the demonstrations on the anniversary of the uprising of the National Technical University of Athens in 1985. The police officer Athanasios Melistas shot Michalis Kaltezas in the back of the head from a distance of twenty meters while the youth was running with other demonstrators away from the cops towards Exarcheia Square. Immediately after Kaltezas' death, the old Chemical School on Solonos Street and the Technical University were occupied. On the morning of the 18th, permission was given from the Committee of University Asylum, with president Michalis Stathopoulos, for the police to enter the old Chemical School. The police invasion took place with the use of tear gas, for the first time after 1976, and the police arrested 37 people who were beaten. About 20 of the protestors managed, via the underground sewers, to get to the group occupying the Technical University. This was the first lifting of asylum since it was first officially instituted in 1982; asylum prevents the police from entering university premises. The disturbances in Athens continued during the following days.

After the events, the minister of public order Menios Koutsogiorgas and the undersecretary Athanasios Tsouras submitted their resignations, which the prime minister at the time, Andreas Papandreou (of the nominally left-wing party PASOK), did not accept. On November 26 of 1985, the group "17 November", as retaliation for the murder of Kaltezas, set off a bomb in a police van (used by the riot cops), near the Hilton, killing one police officer and wounding 14 others.

Melistas was sentenced to two and a half years of prison with a suspended sentence. At the appeals court level, with lawyer Alexandros Lykourezos, his conviction was overturned on January 1, 1990, since the court recognized as a mitigating factor that his action was "in the heat of passion". This action by the court caused new serious episodes including the takeover of the Technical University by leftist and anarchist groups.

Sotev
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Dec 12 2008 11:09

No riots in thessaloniki yesterday.
There were students demos in the morning, and a large propaganda demo in districts away from the burned-up city centre was called by an 'informal' (ie. no unions, no official representatives) assembly --comprising from different social strata, anarchists and radicals, some 200 people or so) . It was decided that there would be no breaking this time, and suprisingly enough it was so, apart from destroying CCTV cameras ( a correct action, preparing the ground for other actions). Different People are starting to speak up. There's now a space to look back at what happened.

Students continue to gather autonomously outside police stations and attacking w/ stones. There are impromptu demonstrations of 200-300 students everywhere.
Actions have been dispersed --no longer confronting dozens and dozens (or hundeds as in athens) riot squads (too many, too concentrated!), but attacking in districts and local areas. During official demos other groups attack banks or police stations. This is good, we are becoming more intelligent and eloquent, without leaving the confrontational stage. Btw, as far as I can tell, these days, there was no 'blind violence' in greece whatsoever..

oh, The army forces are on yellow alert. "they might attack us too" one officer is quoted saying. This yellow alert is ofcourse more an intimidation measure.
Some leftists organizing in the army (anarchists and autonomes traditionally evade army, which is 1 year compulsory service) have declared that they will not accept any command to attack demonstrators.

Sotev
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Dec 12 2008 12:14

if the english can be corrected, it would make a nice document for what is happening. things like this go unnoticed (too much at once!!) but are happening in one form or another in many places. Today I had the time too look at the press, the athens imc, talk w/ occupations from athens. There's no such a thing as a too extremist action in Greece right now. Almost anything is accepted.

If the libcom people agree, I'll translate more stuff and put here, and after they become linguistically corrected they can be put in the library or the greece-unrest place etc.

St. Dimitrios is a south,mostly proletarian, suburb - municipality of Athens. It is also known as "Brachami". It is also important that the workers' union of the municipality supports the occupation.

below is the announcement of the assembly.

===============
OPEN POPULAR ASSEMBLY
OF THE LIBERATED CITY HALL OF St. DIMITRIOS

Short report and new actions.

Last night, something out of the ordinary and by general consensus very important took place in the occupied city hall of St. Dimitrios. With only a few hours to make it known, some 300 persons from every age and social stratum responded to our call. Many matters were openly discussed, such as the auto-organization of the struggles, the clashes with the cops, the deeper causes of this social revolt, our perspectives,the problems immigrants face, the jobless, everyone.

After the first speeches, it became obvious that the intention of the people to use this opportunity to our life in our own hands, after many years of a defeatism, was something not only possible, but urgent.

The usual myths that the media continue to spread have been torn down at once under the applauses of the persons who were talking about everything that is happening, without a priori condemning any tendecy of those in struggle, albeit expressing their thoughts or disagreements. Experiences of elder people who took part in older historical social revolts were communicated, expressing also their self-critique about what these previous revolts end up being.

The gathered declared that it's within our grap to avoid making the same mistakes again, and that we are able to achieve more than we can imagine. There were proposals for actions, like continuing the popular assembly on a permanent basis, starting greek lessons for immigrants, and many more.

For 12/12/08 it was decided that:

- the occupation will continue, demanding the removal of every charge from all arrested of the last days.

- 17.00 puppet show

- 19.00 demonstration

- new assembly.

Occupation of the St. Dimitrios city hall

==================

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Dec 12 2008 12:22
Sotev wrote:
if the english can be corrected, it would make a nice document for what is happening. things like this go unnoticed (too much at once!!) but are happening in one form or another in many places. Today I had the time too look at the press, the athens imc, talk w/ occupations from athens. There's no such a thing as a too extremist action in Greece right now. Almost anything is accepted.

If the libcom people agree, I'll translate more stuff and put here, and after they become linguistically corrected they can be put in the library or the greece-unrest place etc.

Sotev, that would be excellent.

If you post it here, we will tidied up and put it in the Greece unrest section of the library. Many thanks again for all your informative contributions!

If the rioting in Thessaloniki has stopped, do you think things are winding down a bit?

Sotev
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Joined: 2-12-06
Dec 12 2008 12:54
Steven. wrote:
If the rioting in Thessaloniki has stopped, do you think things are winding down a bit?

well, you can't really expect working people to keep sleeping for 2 hours daily for a week, with tons of teargas on their bodies, bruises from plastic bullets etc. One has to take a breath.
Things are calming (for now!) as far as direct clashes go. But things widen up on other levels, as I tried to explain in the previous post.
In Athens on the other hand, there's a large scale clash ( and fierce police repression) right now. One can only keep up with a certain amount of events... As I said, students keep protesting completely on their own -- to the point that insurrectionists search for the kids in the city streets. The media is also keeping radio silence -- no coverage like in the first days. this was ofcourse expected.

edit. also the decision not to wreck havoc in the demonstration was made by an assembly. surprisingly, this decision was respected by everyone - insurrectionists, hooligan-type protestors, kids. so it's not a bad thing.

Iron Column
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Joined: 21-05-07
Dec 12 2008 13:24

Baboon,

Your position, and I assume the ICC's as well, that riots are lacking in perspective is really prehistoric. In the process of rioting people are meeting and finding the need to organise themselves in defending occupations, and the occupied areas are now holding assemblies as Sotev tells us. This is increasingly looking like a pattern, where diffuse riots (say May 68 or Oaxaca 2006) crystallize into a few assemblies which then attempt to propagate their form of organization to the rest of society, most importantly to the factories. Moreover in the rioting itself the dangerous struggle takes on the appearance of play; who doesn't admire that the chrismas tree in front of the parliament was burned down? Why shouldn't banks and governmental buildings get smashed up, is this really contentless to you? In a certain sense, this is a perspective, that of destroying the state-capitalist machinery, which we both agree is necessary. What the Greek riots have done is pose the question of a violent revolution due to an economic crisis, and the bourgeoisie everywhere are worried because they thought history had ended, and you can read it even in their newspapers. And I think they were far more threatened by the banlieue riots in Paris, which saw the destruction of libraries, employment centres, the torching of cars of so-called socialist and communist representatives, a refusal of all mediation; than by the CPE struggle which was in the main a struggle of the unions and leftist parties against one aspect of capitalism, for students hoping to preserve their privileged place in society, and which also was used by Sarkozy to beat out Villepin for the role of Chirac's successor. Admittedly both the CPE and banlieue movements would have been stronger together, as in Greece, but to claim one has a radicality that the other lacks (especially when this choice was one so linked to the capitalist left) is absurd. If the CPE represents in a minute form the positive content of the revolution, then the banlieue also affords us a glimpse of its character of negation.

I would say fundamentally this is reduced to a difference in perspective, whereas Debord and Marx saw revolutionary activity in the silesian workers riots and the ghetto riots in the U.S., you all don't. I personally think this leads to erroneous judgments of the ICC's like the trumpeting of certain student struggles, notably in Venezuela and apparently in Germany as well, which had little to no radical content according to others.