N. & Mi: Two anarchists from Exarchia engaged in solidarity for the prisoners, among other things.
The most important conclusion of this struggle was that prisoners gained a new ability to coordinate their actions inside the prisons of all Greece, they gained a common platform of solidarity and they gained dignity There also appeared this feeling, this consciousness. Vaggelis Palis and Yiannis Dimitrakis wrote a letter that explained this feeling from the terrace of their prison during the 2007 prison revolt, there they explained the amazing feeling of solidarity they gained that day when they experienced the end of all the differences and all the internal fights, the elimination of all the different nationalities, the end of ghettos inside the prison, the liberating feeling of the struggle in the terrace of your jail when all the prisoners come together as one.
To not idealise the prisoners, the important thing is that year after year thousands of people in the prisons understand that they have to fight against the drugs, the snitching, the separation and alienation, and the egotism. The prisoners have to realise that all these are basic elements of the creation of the society of prisons, and they have to fight against this.
It was not important for the anarchists how they carried out the struggle. For all of us it was important how the prisoners themselves realised the struggle. Because it was a struggle for demands, the important thing was how many of their demands they succeeded in winning, and the anarchist movement was ready to struggle in solidarity with the prisoners so they could gain more. The anarchists believed they had to go further, to not relax after the announcement that the government would grant some of their demands. That they could gain much greater victories if they continued. We have to say that during the days of the hunger strike the government announced that they would release almost half the prisoners of Greece. But it became apparent at the end of the hunger strike that this will be through a long procedure that takes place drop by drop. But this still shows the power of the struggle.
We have to clarify that the political analysis and the efforts of the anarchist movement in Greece focuses their solidarity on the anarchist prisoners of course, but a big difference between them and the anarchist movements of other countries is that the anarchist movement of Greece campaigns through the publication of thousands of pamphlets and protests for the elimination of prison itself. It attacks the entire prison system. Because of this the influence of anarchist ideas appears inside the prisons, and the prisoners show solidarity to the anarchist prisoners. From the dictatorship until today there was never even a month without anarchist prisoners in the prison. The anarchist movement organised solidarity for their prisoners, the anarchist prisoners influenced the other prisoners, and the prisoners influenced the anarchist movement, without differentiating between social and political prisoners. Because when the anarchists are prisoners they fight for all people on the inside.
The Left organisations in Greece, when they speak about the prisoners they speak about improving the conditions and for the human rights of the prisoners. On the other hand, when the anarchists speak about the prisoners, even if it is a poster or pamphlet that talks about solidarity with a specific prisoner, they include mention of the liberation of all prisoners and the destruction of the prison system, so even if it has the goal of expressing solidarity with one person, it opens the way towards the anarchist proposition of society without imprisonment.
But the importance is the strategy, the way of expressing your ideas to society Of course the prisoners agree the conditions have to improve, but when we speak to the society the anarchists are explicit about their highest, authentic goal and message. A society without prisons. In this way it becomes another anarchist struggle.