New Anarchist-Communist Organisation Launched in Aotearoa

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Dec 5 2008 12:20
New Anarchist-Communist Organisation Launched in Aotearoa

New Anarchist-Communist Organisation Launched in Aotearoa / New Zealand

A new organisation has been formed with the aim of building a serious revolutionary anarchist-communist movement in Aotearoa/New Zealand.

The Aotearoa Workers Solidarity Movement (AWSM) is an organisation working towards a classless, stateless society: anarchist-communism. We are made up of revolutionary class-struggle anarchists from across Aotearoa / New Zealand. For now, we are a small organisation with members in Wellington, Christchurch and a few smaller towns across the country.

AWSM came together when a few anarchists saw the need for a coherent and organised group of anarchist communists, inspired by the platformist strand of anarchist thought (amongst other things). Informal chats over the last few years turned into serious planning a few months ago and a little conference at Labour weekend (late October) in Wellington.

As class struggle anarchists our priority is active involvement in workplace struggles and industrial action as well as community based campaigns in our neighbourhoods. We aim to publish a monthly newspaper starting in 2009, and a less frequent but more in-depth theoretical magazine as well.

Being located in the bottom of the South Pacific makes us very isolated, however we hope to maintain a good level of contact with like minded groups overseas, which is why you are recieving this announcement. Our international secretary is mandated to keep up this contact, which we hope will be a two-way street - if we are able to cooperate on common projects, this is obviously worthwhile, as any genuine social revolution must be international.

Our website, http://www.awsm.org.nz, will be kept up to date with our activity.

In solidarity,
International Secretary
Aotearoa Workers Solidarity Movement
international [at] awsm.org.nz

Aims & Principles

1: The Aotearoa Workers Solidarity Movement is an organisation working towards a classless, stateless society: anarchist-communism. We are made up of revolutionary class-struggle anarchists from across Aotearoa / New Zealand.

2: Capitalism is based on the exploitation of the working class by the ruling class. But inequality and exploitation are also expressed in terms of race, gender, sexuality, health, ability, age etc, and in these ways one section of the working class oppresses another. This divides us, causing a lack of class unity in struggle that benefits the ruling class. Oppressed groups are strengthened by autonomous action which challenges social and economic power relationships. To achieve our goal we must relinquish power over each other on a personal as well as a political level.

3: We believe that fighting all forms of oppression and exploitation is necessary. Anarchist-Communism cannot be achieved while sexism and racism still exist. In order to be effective in their struggle against their oppression both within society and within the working class, oppressed groups may at times need to organise independently. However, this should be as working class people only, as cross-class movements hide real class differences and achieve little for those in the oppressed groups. Full emancipation cannot be achieved without the abolition of capitalism.

4: We support Tino Rangatiratanga and stand in solidarity with grassroots indigenous struggle and direct action, while not supporting Maori capitalism and corporatisation (we acknowledge the lack of anarchist theory on the indigenous struggle in Aotearoa / New Zealand and are in the process of researching, debating and discussing a more detailed position on this point).

5: While trade unions can never be revolutionary, we recognise that the majority of collective workplace struggle today occurs within unions and therefore our members should join unions where they exist in their workplace, while being wary of any attempts by union bureauracrats to stifle rank and file struggle. Where unions do not exist we encourage our members to engage with their fellow workers to initiate collective action.

6: We recognise that the general strike is one of the working class’ most powerful weapons and oppose all restrictions on worker’s rights to take collective action, including strikes.

7: As well as exploiting and oppressing the majority of people worldwide, Capitalism threatens the planet through war and the destruction of the environment.

8: It is not possible to abolish Capitalism without a revolution, which will arise out of class conflict. The ruling class must be completely overthrown to achieve anarchist communism. Because the ruling class will not relinquish power without their use of armed force, this revolution will be a time of violence as well as liberation.

9: We acknowledge that by implementing the organisation section of the The Organizational Platform of the Libertarian Communists - theoretical unity, tactical unity, collective responsibility and federalism - we will be best able to move forward in promoting the aims and principles of the Aotearoa Workers Solidarity Movement.

Edgar's picture
Edgar
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Jan 19 2009 22:17

Hi Asher,
I'm trying to access the AWSM website from here in the UK and it doesn't seem to be working.

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Anarchia
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Jan 28 2009 01:26

Hi Edgar,

Is the website still not working for you? I can access it fine and I'm not aware of any downtime (although that doesn't mean there hasn't been any!) recently...

Cheers,
Asher
AWSM web geek & international secretary

fatbongo
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Joined: 28-01-09
Jan 28 2009 14:58

I am english and live in the UK but my partner is maori, so I am interested in working out how anarchism/libertarianism relates to maori struggle.

How you are getting on with developing your thoughts on the indigenous struggle in Aotearoa / New Zealand? Are there any useful things i could be reading in order to get my head around the issues? Is there any way I can participate in the work you are doing, given that I'm not likely to be able to make it to any of your meetings!

princess mob
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Jan 29 2009 02:43

Yr acronym is great.

It even beats SACT (Sydney Anarchist Communist Trajectory), which is also pretty damn good - if perhaps less inspirational.

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Jan 29 2009 05:58

fatbongo - There's not really a huge amount out there. You could try neo-liberal globalisation and the tino rangatiratanga movement (I have read it, although I don't remember if it is any good!) and Why Reject The Treaty? (a bit down the page) for a couple of short articles written by Maori anarchists. Also there's Tino Rangatiratanga and Capitalism (by the same author as the first article) and Anarchy: A Maori Perspective (written by a Maori anarchist years ago, now she's not an anarchist but rather a Green Party MP!) All these articles have interesting bits and bits I'd disagree with, but they'll probably be of interest to you.

We haven't really started in earnest with our internal discussions on TR yet, but we aren't expecting them to be quick by any means! At the moment we're collating as many different articles/positions from radical left groups over the years as we can find, so we can look at all of them and critique them, pick bits we like etc etc.

mob - I always thought SACT was a terrible acronym! tongue AWSM kicks arse, and (surprisingly) we haven't got sick of the endless jokes it allows us to make yet.

Join us, we're AWSM! tongue

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Bilan
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Feb 9 2009 14:33

SACT is a rad acronym. You shut up! Haha

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Anarchia
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Feb 9 2009 23:12

tongue

Oh, and seeing as I posted this in Announcements rather than Oceania:

Quote:
Solidarity #1 - Free newssheet of AWSM

The first issue of Solidarity, free monthly newssheet of the Aotearoa Workers Solidarity Movement. This issue has a special feature on water issues across Aotearoa / New Zealand.

Download a .pdf of the newssheet at http://www.awsm.org.nz/solidarity/issue1.pdf or read the articles online at http://awsm.org.nz/?p=78

Contents:

* Not our crisis! Resist attacks on workers
* Water meters for Wellington?
* Profile: Auckland Water Pressure Group
* He wai Maaori - Drinking water in Parihaka
* Say NO to the 90 Day Hire & Fire Act!
* AWSM Aims & Principles

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Edgar
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Feb 11 2009 19:29

Love it,
respect to AWSM