Considerations on the political situation in Spain in 2015, with a brief historical survey of the origins of the civil society movement in the aftermath of the defeat of the workers movement in the eighties, the rise of postmodernism, the impact of the economic crisis, the sources of middle class discontent that gave rise to the civil society movement during the nineties, the new social democratic nostalgia and renascent regional nationalism, and the need to break out of the constraints imposed by the civil society movement in order to really fight for “an egalitarian social transformation of society”.
A 2013 interview with an anti-capitalist and anti-borders activist based in Asturias in Spain, published here for its relevance to ongoing struggles against borders and to facilitate the sharing of experiences and practices across Europe. Translated from the ‘Qué Hacemos’ section of eldiario.es, 21/09/2013.
The Revolutionary Syndicalist Committees in Spain - The history of the revolutionary syndicalist tendency of the CNT (1919-1925) - Comités Syndicalistes révolutionnaires
An account of the rise and fall of the CNT’s Revolutionary Syndicalist tendency—said to reflect the “original” orientation of the CNT of 1910-1918, modeled on the CGT and the "Charter of Amiens", as opposed to the “sectarian” anarchosyndicalist “deviation” that first arose in the CNT in 1919 as a result of the post-war crisis—featuring the “Declaration of Principles” and “Manifesto” of the Revolutionary Syndicalist Committees (founded in 1922), and discussions of the debates in the CNT concerning the Russian Revolution, the Third International, the Red Trade Union International, how to respond to repression, the question of violence, and the campaign for the trade union united front.
A speech delivered in prison in 1920 by Salvador Seguí, a major, and complex, figure in the early history of the CNT: a proponent of alliances with other trade union and political groups, yet also a militant strike leader who spent years of his life behind bars; an opponent of unconditional membership in the Red Trade Union International in 1919, yet also a supporter of the CNT’s 1922 Zaragoza Declaration, according to which the “totally revolutionary” CNT is “absolutely political” by virtue of its far-reaching social goals; an advocate of more intellectual training for trade union militants and a harsh critic of the increasingly more popular exemplary actions, he was assassinated in 1923.
A very short pamphlet written jointly by the Belgian LCI (League of Communist Internationalists) and IARV (Union of International Council Workers), and the Dutch GIK (Group of International Communists) and Proletenstemmen (Proletarian Voice), a 'working group' linked to the latter, about the developments of the Spanish civil war.
An article written by the German council communist Helmut Wagner in April 1937 criticizing extensively the political developments in Spain during the civil war and within it the role played by the anarchists and their organizations. This article first appeared in Ratekorrespondenz, the official publication of the Gruppe Internationaler Kommunisten (GIK) based in Holland, before appearing in Paul Mattick's International Council Correspondence in June of that same year.
Special issue of the Spanish anarchosyndicalist journal, La Campana, featuring the ongoing [June 2015] campaign to free Noelia Cotelo, an anarchist prisoner who has been tortured, humiliated and abused in Spanish prisons since 2006, initially convicted of “joy-riding” and petty theft and sentenced to two and a half years in prison, but since sentenced to four more prison terms making her eligible for release in 2017 at the earliest, as a result of her insubordination and indomitable rebellious spirit as she has confronted the unspeakable injustices behind the walls of the class “justice” system.
Some reflections on the latest domestic security legislation passed in Spain (July 2015), known as the “Ley Mordaza” (the Gag Law), which the authors see as an attempt on the part of a faction of the Spanish ruling class to forestall a Greek-style crisis by relying, no longer merely on mass conformism (which would facilitate a “Syriza” option), but on the security forces, to preserve “civil security” and the “rights and liberties” of the citizens, i.e., the Orwellian “right to agree with the State’s orders and the liberty to obey them”, because of the “spreading social conflicts” in cities and rural areas, thus imposing a “State of Emergency” without the need for a “coup d’état”.
A timely warning to the libertarians of Spain from the editors of Argelaga concerning an attempt (June 2015), instigated by certain elements in the anarchist camp sympathetic to “Platformism”, to form a citizens’ political party based on civil society slogans (“the people, “society”, and “the majority” vs. “the evil ‘elite’” or “the one percent”), transmitted via the telegraphic text-message-style communications of a “postmodern”, “upbeat” and “trendy” “lexicon”, crafted for an audience composed of “the pauperized and computer-literate middle class, students and local bureaucrats”, fodder for “reformist militantism of the trade union, municipalist, NGO or para-institutional type”.