Six of the best Antifa 'terrorists', what they did to cement their places in history

Francesc Sabaté Llopart.

Anti-fascists have been using direct action against fascist regimes for decades, and often described as 'terrorists' as a result. Here we celebrate six of the best 'Antifa Terrorists'.

This post was written in response to a recent attack on a far-right provocateur, resulting in the spread of the '#AntifaTerrorists' hashtag. Fascists have always smeared militant anti-fascists: partisans were called 'bandits', the French resistance a 'crime army'. Below are other fine militants who fought fascism and were subsequently smeared by their enemies.

Francesc Sabaté Llopart

The life of Francesc Sabaté Llopart (pictured above), aka ‘El Quico’, reads like the story of an anarchist action film.From the Spanish Civil War, to the anti-Nazi resistance in France and armed struggle against Franco, Sabaté carried out assassinations of fascists, illegal border crossings across the Pyrenees and armed robberies to fund the resistance. He was eventually named as Franco's 'Public Enemy No. 1'.




Frieda Belinfante

Frieda Belinfante was a Dutch cellist, conductor, lesbian and anti-Nazi resistance member. During the occupation she forged documents for people, and took part in attack on the population registry, which destroyed documentation the Nazis were using to round up Jews in the Netherlands. She survived the war by escaping to Switzerland, crossing the French Alps on foot.




Willem Arondeus

One of Belinfante's comrades in the Dutch resistance was the gay anti-fascist Willem Arondeus. A leader of the Raad van Verzet (Resistance Council), he also participated in the attack on the Amsterdam public records office. However, unlike Belinfante, Arondeus was arrested and executed by the Nazis. His last words before execution were: "Let it be known that homosexuals are not cowards".




Gino Lucetti

Italian anarchist, Gino Lucetti, from the anarchist stronghold of Carrara, tried in 1926 to assassinate the world’s first fascist dictator, Benito Mussolini. Shot in the neck by a fascist and unable to find a doctor willing to remove the bullet, Lucetti was smuggled to France where he was eventually treated. It was here that the assassination attempt was planned: one day, in Rome, Lucetti waited for Mussolini's car to pass before throwing a bomb, which smashed the windscreen but failed to detonate. Eventually arrested, he would die just one week after the Italian surrender in 1943.




Stuart Christie

As an 18-year-old was involved in an attempt to assassinate Spanish dictator General Franco. Christie was imprisoned in Spain where met some of the major players in the Spanish resistance. On his release he founded the Anarchist Black Cross and was accused by the state of providing support to British urban guerrillas the Angry Brigade.




Violet Gibson

A 49-year-old Irish aristocrat and peace activist who attempted to assassinate Italy's fascist dictator, Benito Mussolini, in Rome in 1926. She had armed herself with a pistol wrapped in a shawl, and a rock to break his car window if needed. As she fired at his head, Mussolini moved, meaning that the bullet hit his nose, travelling through both nostrils.

Posted By

libcom
Jul 1 2019 14:44

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freemind
Jul 1 2019 17:58

Great post

freemind
Jul 1 2019 18:01

Documentary on BBC2 Woman who went to fight ISIS 3/7/2019 this Wednesday.She claims to be an Anarchist.
She is not the only comrade fighting there.All power to them

Khawaga
Jul 1 2019 18:29

The title of this article is ace!

Serge Forward
Jul 1 2019 19:50

"Terrorists"?

zugzwang
Jul 1 2019 20:39
Serge Forward wrote:
"Terrorists"?

Guessing this is in response to Andy Ngo getting roughed up at Portland protests, and the claims some people put cement in milkshakes.

Khawaga
Jul 1 2019 20:48
Quote:
"Terrorists"?

After the events in Portland (what zugzwang referred to), fash and alt-right on twitter were trying to (and succeeded in) trending the hashtag #antifaterrorists, libcom and others have been trying to hijack that hashtag with this and other articles.

So basically, it's this internet thing where you wrap politics in layers of satire, irony, inversions etc. Meme culture, I guess. I don't always get it, but I got this one as I saw it unfold.

Serge Forward
Jul 1 2019 21:18

I'm not sure why we should be responding to alt right tripe or indulging in that "Internet thing" which satirises the kind of shite that anyone with any sense will avoid reading. Besides, a few months down the line and this Andy Ngo character will likely be forgotten (certainly in relation to this article).

zugzwang
Jul 1 2019 22:43

What about adding Orwell, who as we know many on the right like invoking, by the way (was wounded in the neck and nearly killed in Spain), maybe as honorable mention?

zugzwang
Jul 2 2019 00:30
Serge Forward wrote:
I'm not sure why we should be responding to alt right tripe or indulging in that "Internet thing" which satirises the kind of shite that anyone with any sense will avoid reading. Besides, a few months down the line and this Andy Ngo character will likely be forgotten (certainly in relation to this article).

I don't see what the issue is, just satirising as you said the right's (and some leftists too) attempts to stir panic over 'anti-fascist terrorists violently attacking a neutral journalist'. The op could maybe add some context to make the terrorist bit clearer.

radicalgraffiti
Jul 2 2019 01:38
Serge Forward wrote:
I'm not sure why we should be responding to alt right tripe or indulging in that "Internet thing" which satirises the kind of shite that anyone with any sense will avoid reading. Besides, a few months down the line and this Andy Ngo character will likely be forgotten (certainly in relation to this article).

if fascists were sticking up posters all over town would you just ignore it?

people get there information from the internet now

Serge Forward
Jul 2 2019 06:57

I'd deface or remove them, I wouldn't go out and put up a satirical anti fascist poster next to it. This is an in-joke between those on Libcom who choose to put time into looking at far right websites. I'm not keen on seeing comrades like Lucetti and Sabate used in this way and terrorists isn't even in scare quotes. In a couple of years, the article will remain while Ngo and others will be forgotten... and new or casual readers will be wondering why we call these comrades terrorists.

Mike Harman
Jul 2 2019 07:50

This is an in-joke between those on Libcom who choose to put time into looking at far right websites.

This isn't just far right websites, the concrete milkshake conspiracy theory was all over social media and ended up in the Independent.

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/portland-protests-prou...

radicalgraffiti
Jul 2 2019 08:20
Serge Forward wrote:
I'd deface or remove them, I wouldn't go out and put up a satirical anti fascist poster next to it.

well when you figure out how to deface or remove other peoples posts from twitter and facebook let us know, i'm sure lots of people would be interested

Serge Forward wrote:
This is an in-joke between those on Libcom who choose to put time into looking at far right websites.

well twitter are facebook do have massively right wing biase, but i would call them far right websites, most of the people posting are normal people who dont think about politics that much

Ed
Jul 2 2019 09:04

Serge, as ever there's a grain of truth in what you say (we could - and probably will now that it's been raised - add a para at the beginning contextualising things). However, it's kind of buried under your general grouchiness about anything young people* do or cultural references you don't get (and which must therefore be bad). So, for instance,

Serge wrote:
I'm not sure why we should be responding to alt right tripe or indulging in that "Internet thing" which satirises the kind of shite that anyone with any sense will avoid reading.

Serge wrote:
This is an in-joke between those on Libcom who choose to put time into looking at far right websites.

Apart from the weird 'internet things' comment (like, I assume you're not reading this engraved on cave wall) I feel like if there's anything we should have learned from the last 5-6 years of far-right politics is that 'internet things' have very concrete real-world effects. Far-right narratives spin through the internet and come back into the real world as racist attacks and even murders: think Darren Osborne chugging on Tommy Robinson videos before driving a van into Muslims. Similarly, a friend of mine from Italy got in touch with me because a friend of his in France had been telling him about the Rotherham grooming gangs were allowed to exist coz of political correctness and the police didn't want to look racist (and that Britain didn't want to give Asia Bibi asylum here coz they were scared of backlash from the Muslim community). Just because you're ignoring them doesn't mean the narratives aren't circulating social media and having their effect.

It should also be remembered that "the kind of shite that anyone with any sense will avoid reading" is absolutely kicking the shit out of pretty much every far-left media outlet and certainly every anarchist one. Maybe people should have more sense and read libcom/ACG website, but currently even cranks like Stefan Molyneux who talk about differences in brain size between races have a far bigger reach than either of us (nearly a million subscribers on Youtube; his video from a day ago about Andy Ngo has been watched 130k+ times. How do we compare for numbers?).

Like, 10-15 years ago, we always used to talk about the 'anarchist ghetto' meaning mostly anarcho-hippies or whatever. But I think the far-right have absolutely shown us up over the 5-6 years, going from a position of a similar (or worse) ghetto to basically being on the edge of the mainstream. Meanwhile, there are anarchists still describing them as "shite that anyone with any sense will avoid reading" when they absolutely dwarf us and a lot of people with sense don't even know who we are! That's the anarchist ghetto, Serge; and me and you are both in it.

Serge wrote:
I'm not keen on seeing comrades like Lucetti and Sabate used in this way and terrorists isn't even in scare quotes. In a couple of years, the article will remain while Ngo and others will be forgotten... and new or casual readers will be wondering why we call these comrades terrorists.

I mean, I hope he'll be forgotten in the next couple years but signs don't point in that direction (unless he turns out to be a secret paedo or something).

But the more significant point is that you're looking at anarchist writing from the perspective of an archivist, thinking how future readers will look back on this article. That's not helpful; the point of this piece wasn't to preserve the historical record, it was to intervene in present debates where the context is already known by far larger numbers of people than, for instance, read the ACG site.

To serve that function it had to be gotten out quickly so it would do well on Google and social media algorithms. You can argue that it could've been written better and I'd probably agree but we're all working and it was rushed (and can be rectified now anyway). But if the issue is what people in 5 years time will think of it then I think that's missing the point and misunderstanding how political media (anarchist or otherwise) works these days. And it's something we need to start getting right, but to do that it doesn't help to dismiss engagement with far larger audiences than we currently get as 'internet things'...

*people under 40 wink

Serge Forward
Jul 2 2019 10:25

Ed, you're being disingenuous with your spurious allegations and accusations of grouchiness over "young people" (not only far from the truth but a trope often used to justify ageism in these parts). I only skimmed the rest of what you wrote as I couldn't be arsed to read the rest properly after your initial attack.

That aside, now the scare quotes have been added, I have no further issue with the article.

Ed
Jul 2 2019 11:20

Oh come off it, Serge. You've described yourself as a grouch/grump on these forums and engaged in much harsher 'attacks' than what amounts to little more than a bit of gentle pisstaking.

You don't want to read my post then fine, you don't have to. It turned out to be much longer than I'd intended. But no need to dress it up as taking offence about being called grouchy towards 'young people' (with asterisk and winky smile)..

Edited to add: FWIW I don't think the article is solved just with the scare quotes but it's all any of us have had time to do so far.

Serge Forward
Jul 2 2019 11:24

Go in peace fella. It's not young people I'm grouchy with, it's just people who talk shite wink

Red Marriott
Jul 2 2019 11:30

The Net is a world of largely dislocated insular ghettos, some far larger than others. When ramblers stray into an unfamiliar ghetto the 'in-the'know' references are often misunderstood or missed. Beyond the present passing context (or for those majority not engaged in the present debate) some will likely misunderstand this as a libcom endorsement of terrorism. It doesn't seem the best way to satirise without being very clear about that. Also, Stuart Christie's teenage naivety that led him straight to a Spanish jail isn't anything to applaud or romanticise.

It could also imply that we are now at a similar historical point as those fascist regimes which led the cited 'terrororists' to act - which is not true. If you don't know the present 'in' references, which most won't, all sorts of interpretations can appear reasonable. It may be well meant but it's almost like quite cliquey references are being justified as a supposedly open populist approach.

Ed wrote:
I feel like if there's anything we should have learned from the last 5-6 years of far-right politics is that 'internet things' have very concrete real-world effects. Far-right narratives spin through the internet and come back into the real world as racist attacks and even murders:

If that's true you surely then don't want to simply mirror right tactics and try to get an equivalent left response. You can't be as simplistic as the right; part of their appeal is offering simplistic narratives that have easy convenient scapegoats which make factual refutation largely irrelevant to those who wanna believe them. If you're trying to reach such disorientated people irony about 'terrorism' may be a bit too subtle in the post-truth age.

Ed
Jul 2 2019 12:40
Red Marriot wrote:
Beyond the present passing context (or for those majority not engaged in the present debate) some will likely misunderstand this as a libcom endorsement of terrorism. It doesn't seem the best way to satirise without being very clear about that.

This is a fair comment I think and the scare quotes are an initial attempt to get at that (though as I said previously, I think it needs more e.g. a short paragraph introducing the context, Andy Ngo, how fash have always labelled anti-fascists terrorists/criminals, etc).

Red Marriot wrote:
It may be well meant but it's almost like quite cliquey references are being justified as a supposedly open populist approach.

I see what you mean but I think of it slightly differently. I don't think there is a problem with texts/'propaganda' being aimed at particular subcultures e.g. an anarchist blog just looking at grime/drill music or rock-climbing or poetry or whatever would be great. The problem becomes when a 'movement' becomes to embedded to one particular subculture (at which point it becomes more of a scene imo, hence the scare quotes).

Add to this that the fact that there has been a spike in interest in the last couple days in searching some combination of 'Antifa terrorists' and 'cement' and I think the 'cliquey' reference has the potential to travel quite far in the age of social media and Google news updates. Meanwhile, a more 'open populist approach' (which judging from the language I don't think you favour anyway?) has the pitfall of being aimed at everyone and therefore appeals to no one.

Red Marriot wrote:
If that's true you surely then don't want to simply mirror right tactics and try to get an equivalent left response. You can't be as simplistic as the right; part of their appeal is offering simplistic narratives that have easy convenient scapegoats which make factual refutation largely irrelevant to those who wanna believe them. If you're trying to reach such disorientated people irony about 'terrorism' may be a bit too subtle in the post-truth age.

This is actually a question I've been turning over in my head for quite a while tbh because essentially I think you're right: we can't just transfer far-right media strategies over for our politics because our practices look very different. That said, I think there are some things we can learn from far-right media (their ecology of podcasts, Youtube channels etc being one, but also how they are able to use algorithms, social media etc).. this perhaps needs a whole new thread though tbh

Mike Harman
Jul 2 2019 13:26

If that's true you surely then don't want to simply mirror right tactics and try to get an equivalent left response.

I think this article is mirroring buzzfeed (clickbait, listicle) tactics rather than far-right ones. Same as when we posted the Chomsky antifa listicle or the tankies one. I do think it would be a problem if we only published stuff like this. One every few months though, not so much.

Aping the far right tactic would be making up a magic weapon used by Patriot Prayer, or posting pictures from the internet of people with oil diffuser burns and pretending they were due to chemical attacks. They don't really go in for 'historical listicle with tenuous connection to currently discussed event'.

Jim
Jul 2 2019 14:11

It's kind of surprising that people who think the anarchist movement needs to move outside to the activist ghetto don't understand how SEO works. Google searches for 'Antifa' and 'cement' spiked on Sunday after what happened in Portland. 'AntifaTerrorists' was trending on Twitter. We put the above article up in an attempt to benefit from those searches and trends, with the hope anybody who came across it would end up reading about people who took totally justifiable direct action against fascist regimes. This was at the same time as flooding the #AntifaTerrorists hashtag with articles we host about the Spanish, French and Italian resistances.

Ed
Jul 3 2019 10:43

Introductory paragraph added above btw