Daily Archives: 18/01/2011

( Protestors took to the streets across the country to show their rage against the bankers bonuses and profits. Right to Work called for the protests to bring the anger home to the bankers – see here

Over 60 people joined the protest in London on Friday.

Many people on the protest had also been on the ‘Dance against the Deficit’ at the Bank of England earlier in the day. Protestors laid seige to several banks during the afternoon. More to read and watch…

( by GeorgieBC 01/17/2011

Earlier in Tunisia, 26-year-old Mohammed Bouazizi died from self inflicted burn wounds, in Algeria, at least four attempted public suicides were reported this week, and a man in Mauritania, and one in Cairo also set himself on fire today.

2011-01-17 Mauritanian man sets himself on fire

Submitted  on Mon, 01/17/2011 – 18:04 

Mauritanian man set himself on fire today in an anti-government protest.

Yacoub Ould Dahoud, 42, stopped his car in front of the Senate, which is several metres (feet) from the presidency in the capital, and set himself alight inside the vehicle, witnesses said.

He had called journalists to tell them he intended to carry out the act because he was ‘unhappy with the political situation in the country and angry with the government.’

Police intervened and he was taken to hospital with burns to his face and hands, a hospital source said.

AllVoices writes “a man set himself on fire in front of the West African state’s presidential palace. The man, described as a 40-year-old entrepreneur from a wealthy family, was protesting over alleged government mistreatment of his tribe, police sources said.”


Al Arabiya writes

In Mauritania, a young man with a graduate degree from France and who belongs to a wealthy family set himself on fire to protest against alleged government mistreatment of his tribe.

The family of Yacoub Ould Dahoud, 40, reportedly faced government abuse and was excluded from vital decision-making positions thought the country and from government deals with the country’s tribes, according the Mauritanian’s independent news agency Al-Khabar.

Dahoud’s tribe demands that the government fulfill its commitments in a deal it had made with the tribe over a number health ministry posts, the agency added.

The tribe’s business in agriculture and trade in marine appliances was also reportedly hard-hit by government policies.

Witnesses said Dahoud was shouting epithets against President Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz.



2011-01-17 Egyptian man sets himself on fire

Submitted on Mon, 01/17/2011 – 18:14 

A man set himself on fire outside Egypt’s parliament in Cairo. Restaurant owner Abdo Abdelmoneim from Qantara stood in front the parliament building in (downtown Cairo) and set fire to himself reportedly because he did not receive the bread coupons for his restaurant. He was immediately taken to hospital to receive treatment.

AllVoices reports that the man appeared at first as though he had come to sit in front of the Council, then he poured gasoline on the lower half of his body and dove to the ground. Security guards and a taxi driver used fire extinguishers to put out the fire.

The guard said, “Security Council found in his identity card is the name .. Abdou Abdel Moneim Hamada Jaafar Khalifa, born on the tenth of February 1962 from the city west of Kantara, Ismailia, and the owner of a restaurant.”

According to one eyewitness said the man was repeating shout, “The security of the State of the State Security, my right subconscious is lost by air (inside) of the State.”


( New “fiscally conservative” GOP senators say the U.S. should extend the expensive Afghan war indefinitely

Last week anti-tax leader Grover Norquist pleaded with conservatives to have, at least, a conversation about Afghanistan and the goals and costs of the 10-year war. (One estimate puts the price tag at $120 billion per year.)

But it appears the Republican Party is simply not there with Norquist. Read more…

( AN UNDERCOVER policeman who infiltrated a South Wales anarchist movement de-politicised the group by introducing a heavy drinking culture, an insider has told the Echo.

It emerged at the weekend that the 44-year-old police officer posed as a member of the Cardiff Anarchist Network between 2005 and 2009.

A member of the network, who formed a friendship with the clandestine officer, last night revealed how he turned the political campaigners into more of a “friendship group” by encouraging boozing.

The officer – identified only as “Officer B” – was unmasked by various websites at the weekend as more questions were raised about the role of undercover officers in the wake of the outing of PC Mark Kennedy.

The Cardiff Anarchist Network insider, who did not want to be named, described the officer as a “friendly and caring bloke” who never put himself on the frontline during demonstrations and protests.

“He certainly wasn’t what you’d call an agent provocateur,” he said.

“I can think of a few campaigns which would have been more successful had he not been involved in them. It wasn’t that he was preventing criminal activity, he was just preventing criminal protests.”

The Cardiff Anarchist Network is a left-wing, anti-capitalist group made up of about 60 members. The officer also had links with other local groups that included No Borders South Wales and Eat Out Vegan Wales.

While Officer B was involved in organising the group’s campaigns, he seemed to other members to be more interested in socialising than protesting.

“After a demonstration he’d always be first to the bar. He developed a culture of heavy drinking in the group and he turned us from a political group into more of a friendship group,” the source added.

“Before he came along we used to have our meetings, sit there for a couple of hours then go home. But when he started coming we’d be there until the bar closed; we were always the last ones to leave.”

The anonymous anarchist said Officer B lived in a flat in the Penylan area of Cardiff which was “surprisingly bare”.

“We were never particularly suspicious of him because we thought it would be ridiculous that the police would be interested in our boring group,” he said.

“But now I know who he really is, I’d love to have a word with him – not about the activism but about the personal relationships he betrayed.”

( A curious idea has been proposed to give anarchism a more acceptable public image by employing marketing methods known to have worked in promoting McDonalds, Coca-Cola and Top Gun. Do we embrace the methods of the madness or do we reject them? If so – why? If not – why not?

I’ll say this for the capitalists: their branding is far superior to anything radical left has or has ever had to offer. When it comes to packaging, no one does it like the capitalists. It’s mighty tempting to think that throwing out the capitalist marketing with capitalism is throwing out the baby with the bathwater but I wouldn’t be so hasty.

We cannot continue trying to combat the seductive appearance and glazed veneer of the American Dream with acronyms like LRBW and expect results, this much is true. This means that we should seriously start re-thinking the propaganda war and how to start combating the shiny gloss that the capitalists use to such great effect.

The solution, I feel, is not a straightforward exercise to simply fight fire with fire for, in order to accomplish this, we would first need fire – which we don’t have – as well as the cold-blooded ruthlessness required to have its use achieve full potential. We cannot simply employ capitalist propaganda methods because it’s nonsensical to try and outshine the wrapping when, on the one hand, it would reduce the argument to who has better propaganda (nullifying the comparison of substance where the strength of our argument lies and where we clearly have a superior product) and, on the other, capitalists are far better at it, pouring so much resource into endeavours on all channels, employing their best and brightest to work on marketing the idea of consumerism full time. The latter to such great lengths and success that even in lower income circles (and this is a worldwide phenomenon) it is virtually taboo to even suggest that ownership of luxury items is not a prerequisite for happiness. Given the bombardment they’re exposed to from movies, TV, radio, internet, advertising, newspapers, books, Oprah and any new revenue stream the corporations are inventing and re-inventing all the time, it’s hardly a surprising state of affairs. No one in the milieu really talks about this prevailing condition amongst the working class. If any talk of it is heard it is mainly flat out denial that this problem even exists or claiming that the condition is not severe or widespread enough to represent a problem. This view often justified by high frequency appearances of Argument Tombola’s old-wives’ tale about living conditions becoming so bad that a critical mass number of people would no longer be able to tolerate them despite the propaganda and would spontaneously rise up in opposition. This would be a perfectly acceptable strategy if we were trying to destroy (blank)isms but since we are trying to dismantle the system of oppression *because* it makes living conditions for the vast majority of people on the planet unbearable already, then we might do better than not simply wait for its prolonged effects to completely annihilate humanity (and itself in the process which would, technically, constitute our victory over the system, even if no-one is left around to enjoy it).

To be further deluding ourselves into a false sense of action is not productive and best described as Revolution Worship a.k.a. that favourite anarchist daydream where the problems which need to be solved in order to have a revolution are postponed and left to be solved as trivial nuisances after the revolution is over. This view (and, for that matter the view of revolution as a happening or an event that has a beginning, a middle and an end) is part of a widespread and more general problem of lack of understanding as to what constitutes a revolution. I could easily use twice as many words to layout my analysis on that one but it should suffice to say for the purpose of this discussion that solving the riddle of zombie consumers is a prerequisite part of the revolutionary struggle that simply cannot take place “after the revolution” because it is a necessary prerequisite for the revolution to “begin” in the first place. Or, academically: the propaganda of consumerism is a direct barrier to the accelerated conditions of the revolutionary class war, that are a necessary stepping stone in facilitating the eventual victory for the working class over the ruling elite (which will usher in the next phase of the revolution).

Our answers to capitalist advertising need to move past mild musings with consumer seduction (e.g. riot porn, romanticizing The Struggle) and we should distance ourselves from advertising the revolution as a brand altogether. We cannot win that battle and so we should focus instead on things that we can do effectively. For even if we could and do win Best Brand Campaign Grand Prix, in so doing we’d be losing the war by corrupting the concepts to appear as tangible commodities, thus handing them over to the oppressor to use as another weapon in their arsenal; to re-package and sell as their own – something that capitalists excel at. We cannot outpackage capitalism even if we wanted to. This is not what I’m proposing. It’s pointless to even consider this as an option. This has been and will always remain our enemy’s goal from the very beginning so to do the leg work on their behalf would not only be pointless for us but also a tragic irony. Propagandism represents a real danger to the movement and a risk of corrupting it once the stagnation ends and we begin gaining momentum. Let me expand on that for a moment: allowing loosely defined ‘isms’ to be subjected to the effects of spin doctors destroys their only value as teaching tools, reducing them down to vulgarity of slogans and symbols which promote a fuzzy ideology “for the benefit and betterment of everyone indiscriminately”. Without even getting into a discussion about taste, these things should be sceptically avoided by default for no other reason than that they have long-standing tradition of being which-came-first-chicken’s egg the ruling elites use as a catalyst to persist and further the agenda of corruption and oppression. They do this under a guise of defending and/or following any number of distinct ideologies of which capitalism has the most subtle and sophisticated propaganda. To the ruling class it does not matter if you call the system ‘feudalism’, ‘capitalism’, ‘communism’ or ‘anarchism’ because to them an ideology only serves the purpose of giving voice to academic validation of the means and ends. It is only yet another way of subduing public dissent, a phrase that should be a coined term due to unopposed acceptance of its occurrence.

We cannot sell anarchism because if we could – anyone could and we’d be back to square one. Anarchism is simply an attempt to define and separate the concerns of the oppressors from the concerns of the oppressed under a blanket philosophy that serves only the purposes of definition and should not be an emblem according to which we identify our tribe. It is where emblems and definitions overlap that the political philosophy begins to transcend the hazy ideals its proponents aspire to into the day-to-day reality of oppression and the effects it has on people. Here we need to make a clean break from being anarchists and become revolutionaries in the way we act and speak. ‘Anarchist’ is a political designation. ‘Radical’ is that same designation described from the perspective of the accepted convention. These are not roles. ‘Revolutionary’ is a role that serves a purpose in society. Political labels are what we must divorce our identities from in our very own minds. From the hindsight of the future world of our descendants, anarchism is not a radical political view but the accepted norm. If we truly believe it to be so – the philosophy of a viable improvement of managing resources and organizing social stratosphere – then we must also accept either that this way of organizing our lives is the only logical outcome of the class war that can sustain our species in the centuries to follow or, alternatively, human kind will perish beforehand from the devastating effects of rampant greed left unchecked under the present conditions. These should be our uncompromising axioms: either we liberate ourselves from the yoke of elitist supremacy or it will spell doom for us all someday soon enough.

We must embrace this attitude and proclaim it to others without fear and false modesty or we’ll never exert any meaningful effects that further that cause. Ask yourself: why is it so wrong to promote these ideas with a clear voice, free from ideological rhetoric and stench of narcissistic and self-congratulatory overtones? The temptation, as always, is to reject potential risks of opportunism this approach would undoubtedly bring and remain on the fringe and in the comfort zone because that reduces the risks and validates our standpoint as ethically pure. With small numbers of participants we can preserve the purity of our ideas more easily but we could never utilize them to any other end apart from idea preservation as an end in itself.

We could certainly adopt some of the underpinning sales principles from Glengarry Glen Ross where we present ourselves in the best light but we must stop short of Roma’s ABCs. We need to NBC – Never Be Closing. We don’t want to appeal to people’s lowest common denominator instincts with smooth-talker speeches in grand, poetic soliloquies; preying upon their feelings of insecurity. We want a dialogue, we want critical thinkers. But in the same breath we cannot afford to be intellectual hipsters, either. We cannot continue and not be heard or given the time of day because we complacently accept the common perception of being the political cult equivalent of Jehovah’s Witnesses.


“Have you heard the Good News, m’am? The insurrection is coming.”

Not fighting this perception and dismissing people who see us in this light as intellectually inferior robs both the revolution of their support and them of a better life. In the end, we should not be ashamed to sell what we believe and certainly not ashamed of what we are selling because we are not selling anything that requires people to sacrifice anything they value. Neither time nor effort – not even monetary currency. We are merely advocating re-directing time and effort they already spend doing their masters’ bidding for the benefit and sake of them and their children while to the detriment of those masters only as a side effect. We should work with the principles of marketing a product and apply those for different ends but reject the methods. With everything and with gusto. Language, attitude, image. We chose the language. We should refer to all political ideologies not anarchist as anti-anarchism. Why should anarchism be perceived as the negative of capitalism? They are not objective polar opposites of ethos with equal footing. One is a superior social system to the other. In some spheres we should stop referring to anarchism altogether and instead talk about it as ‘sustainable economy’ when talking about economics or ‘real democracy’ when talking about politics.

We should stop defending our positions about safety and means of survival by starting our sentences with ‘under anarchism food/schools/police/hospitals will be blah blah blah’. It should not be phrased “under anarchism”. That’s perpetuates a political stream view that reduces its proponent to that of an amateur pundit. It should be phrased “under rule of rational thinking” because it is logical that organization of anything society needs should be done so without authoritarian loopholes that allow some to exploit many for their own selfish ends because that is what makes sense in terms of our survival. We need to start buying into that ourselves if we are ever to convince others. I’m not one to mince exact words but you get the picture.

We should stop adopting the underdog, victim-o-oppression image that we neither created nor control and promote a positive, bold image. We should be projecting ideas of a superior model instead of passively adopting and timidly apologizing for the underground resistance guerrilla or hippies-on-acid or black-clad Molotov stereotypes everywhere we go and with everything we do. Revolutionaries need to come out from under the anarchism rock and start publicly articulating some of that daring bravado they only seem to show when releasing pent-up aggression in riot conditions. And when I say ‘articulate bravado’ it is not to be confused with puritan snobbery, moral pretentiousness and intellectual condescension all too common in the milieu full of hypocrites and disruptionists who would rather mask their cowardice with passive-aggressive sneering than be exposed for closet authoritarians that they are.

An interesting question that presents itself is what prevents us from becoming simply more vocal and affirmed with our beliefs? The answer is as simple as it is devastating: parochial social norms. It is simply not cool to not be indifferent about anything at all, including our own interests. The zeitgeist of the generation seems to be that people must at all times maintain a cold and critical look towards everything in a perverse appearance of indifference to even the things they care about (alas, especially to things we care about) else risk losing respect of peers. The anarchists are not immune to pressure to conform to this pretence that is now endemic throughout the younger movement, as the next generation prepares to take on the front running role while the individuals in it continue to struggle with this contrarian, ridiculing and ridiculous outlook on life.

To combat the external pejorative labels of our political views we must first deal with them in and dismiss them from our own minds. To do otherwise would be to remain passive, cynical observers in the interest of preserving that very image out of a pathological and irrational insistence to be “cool”. In the process we would condemn those not given an opportunity to understand the true forces behind their life of servitude and ignorance while we wait for the adequate conditions in order to recruit more easily. Our habitat and resources may not survive prolonged periods of social organization; the required external pressure for these critical mass circumstances of great numbers of angry and resentful people to come about for mere purposes of convenience of recruitment while, in so doing, present an opportunity for an industrial individual or group to do the same and wield as a mob for their own motives (historically, the No. 1 revolution hijacker, more affectionately known in textbooks as the notorious ‘power vacuum’).

Yet despite the clear need for us to take the initiative and at least attempt to avoid this from happening we continue to remain vigilant as ever to dismiss someone passionate about their interests; always eager to debate non-issues and invent lame excuses for the sake of appearances. Instead of taking the fight to our oppressors while the going is still good (and time is running out), we divert focus as an excuse to remain apathetic, denying any wrongdoing while accusing others of despondence. This same narrow-minded apathy we exercise is what liberals, conservatives and “socialists” alike display with their outrage about politicians who are corrupt, while all too happy to deal with that by only complaining or venting and even themselves partaking in socially acceptable forms thereof; all sprinkled with juicy rationalisations revolving around “it’s them, not us” rhetoric and someone else being designated by the electoral process to ensure fairness and justice. So, instead of holding their officials responsible by exercising their *constitutional* and *legally permitted* (even if frowned upon) right to riot, they defer responsibility for both being guilty of corruption themselves and holding others accountable for it, turning that responsibility over to… the invisible forces of karmic justice? It’s what I would guess, seeing as they are out of any other logical options. It’s anyone’s guess really but we have to be smarter than that. We have to be better than that. We have to be because there is nothing and no-one else in the way of the snowball.

Dealing with internal problems like sabotage and such is not something that we should follow the authoritarian approach on, by “tightening security” – even as I say the phrase, it is as the concept itself abstract and meaningless because it is without context in reality – but by taking on the revolutionary role in the things we do and the things we say. Staying true to our beliefs and speaking true of our beliefs are two very different things, requiring different levels of effort and discipline or, as a hetero, white, male liberal I once knew put it: being a gentleman and staying a gentleman is a lot harder than calling yourself one in the company of ladies.

I do not at this point wish to further elaborate on the problem of disruptionists and infiltrators (which I feel is relevant to the overall discussion) because I need to prevent this essay from being even longer but I will say this: if we were indeed true to our principles as we maintain we are – we would not be nearly as susceptible to being fooled by outward appearances that have no substance underneath. I will leave you with the topic on dealing with disruptionists and informants by venturing into the murky waters of wishy-washy quoting for fun and profit, choosing to butcher Shakespeare who said:


“This above all: to thine own self be true, And it must follow, as the night the day, Thou canst not then be false to any man”

Or, as I like to paraphrase it: if we wish to expose false pretences of others we must either do so by adopting effective policing methods used by our enemies or learn to recognise and reject our own so we may not be so eager to confuse those of others’ with sincerity.

I don’t vouch for effectiveness but I prefer the former far less than the latter.\

by rrgr3000

( from : Patchy historical information about the activity of some anarchists – revolutionary and pacifist – in France during World War II and under occupation.

This is summary of material from the C.I.R.A., Marseille, Bulletin No. 21/22 (Summer, 1984), which had the theme Anarchists and the Resistance.

Jean Rene Sauliere (alias Andre Arru) was one of the anarchist participants in the French resistance to the Nazis and their Vichy collaborators during World War II. He was born in Bordeaux in 1911 and became an orphan during the First World War. In early adulthood he made his living as a travelling salesman. He belonged to the Bouches-du-Rhone section of the Federation of Free Thinkers, and was elected its president. He also joined the anarchist movement and became a pacifist. Several years before the outbreak of the 1939-1945 conflict, he decided that he would never participate in any war. Like other pacifists and revolutionaries, he saw war as a solution worse than the evil it was supposed to combat. By 1939, Sauliere decided that he would not voluntarily submit to arrest for refusing to serve in the military if called. He intended to escape in order to continue the struggle as a pacifist and anarchist. This was a common attitude in the left libertarian and revolutionary syndicalist circles of the time.

In an article entitled “Reflections on Some Tall Tales,” written in the late 1970s and published in issue 21/22 of the C.I.R.A. Marseille Bulletin, Sauliere noted that the history of the French anarchist movement between 1939 and 1945 has been almost completely neglected, and when dealt with at all, has most often been distorted.

One of the examples he cited was from Jean Maitron’s History Of The Anarchist Movement, Volume 2, 1914 to the Present (published in France in 1975). Maitron dispensed with the period 1940-1945 by asserting that the French anarchist movement was inactive and disorganised until 1943 because it was “leaderless” at the beginning of the war. He also asserted that some of the anarchists were “Germanophiles,” others were Gaullists, and most were simply involved in individual survival during the war. But Sauliere, who was an active participant in the anarchist and anti-Fascist movement during the war, asserted that the charges that some anarchists were “Germanophiles” or Gaullists were definitely untrue. Sauliere did note that the pre-war anarchist movement was suppressed in France, after the general mobilisation was declared in September of 1939. Its members were either inducted into the military, refused the draft, went into hiding, or were put under police surveillance. Louis Lecoin and a large number of other well-known anarchists wrote, signed and distributed a leaflet titled “Immediate Peace” a few days after the declaration of war, for which they were all arrested. At the same time, all anarchist literature was banned because it was basically anti-militarist and anti-war.

Nevertheless, Sauliere indicated, there were a number of individuals and groups who began rebuilding the movement soon after the start of the war. Neither lack of “leadership” nor lack of motivation were hindrances. The number of French anarchist activists had been small before the war relative to the numbers of activists involved in authoritarian left groupings. So, although many of them began undertaking activity, their criticisms of the established unions and political left, and their small numbers, left them relatively isolated. This, in combination with the severe repression and police surveillance, made organised anarchist activity during the war years very difficult.

Before the war Sauliere was actively involved in the Bordeaux anarchist group. A number of other members in the group held the same anti-war, anti-military position as he did, and a number of the other young men had also decided to avoid the draft if war came. But Sauliere was the only one in the group who followed through when the general mobilisation was announced. He went into hiding for five months in Bordeaux, until he was able to get papers that identified him as a person medically unfit for military service. With these, in February 1940, he went to Marseille, where he was less well known by the authorities.

Adopting the name on his papers, Andre Arru, he contacted French, Italian and Spanish anarchists living in the area. Later he was joined by a Bordeaux anarchist comrade named Armand, who had been discharged from the military. They formed a libertarian group and began writing leaflets and pamphlets which they printed themselves. In the centre of the city, during the night-time curfew, they put up posters and distributed the leaflets in mailboxes and other places. In the beginning there were only two activists regularly involved; but their numbers grew to twelve as the war went on. At first, they were only able to print a few dozen small leaflets using very simple techniques, but later, with the help of activists in other cities, they were able to do professional printing of one to five thousand copies. From early 1940 on, they produced literature attacking the Fascists and all those responsible for the war, including capitalists and the Stalinist dictatorship. The Marseille group put out at least five different publications of one thousand or more copies each: a leaflet titled “Too All Intellectual and Manual Workers”, a poster headed “Against Fascism and Dictatorship,” a poster headed “Death to The Brutes”, a 45-page pamphlet titled The Guilty Ones, and a 12-page bulletin named REASON.

The Marseille anarchists also made and maintained regular contact with anarchist groups in other cities and individuals in the area who worked with them. They were in touch with people in Paris, Nimes, Lyon, Montpellier, Toulouse, Foix, Var and elsewhere. They made contact with the anarchist printers Henri and Raoul Lion in Toulouse, who were actively involved in the French Resistance movement. The brothers printed posters, leaflets, the first issue of Reason, and the pamphlet The Guilty Ones for the Marseille group, as well as books and other anarchist literature. They were eventually arrested and sent to a concentration camp, where both died. The Marseille group’s literature was distributed locally and in the other cities where anarchists were active.

The bulletin Reason: Organ Of The International Revolutionary Syndicalist Federation, issue No. 1, June, 1943, contained discussions of the Katyn Forest massacre, the Spanish Revolution and current events in France from a libertarian perspective.

The Russian anarchist Voline was living in the Marseille area. Even though he was under police surveillance, he was able to evade the authorities in order to participate in the work of the group. He helped to put together and distribute the pamphlet The Guilty Ones, among other things. Sauliere/Arru also received assistance from Pierre Besnard, former secretary- general of the Revolutionary Syndicalist General Confederation of Labour (C.G.T.S.R.), in working on this project.

In his book, Maitron asserted that the anarchists did not have very many meetings during the war, especially before 1943, and that the meetings they had were not very serious. But Sauliere, in “Reflections on Some Tall Tales,” noted that he attended quite a few meetings, many of them before 1943, both in Marseille and in other cities, along with anarchists from a number of places. The discussions they had were quite serious, including analyses of current events and debates about whether they should cooperate directly with non-anarchist anti-Fascists in their ongoing activities or remain separate and independent from the rest of the organised resistance. Many individual anarchists chose to be involved in the establishment Resistance as well as taking part in separate left libertarian group activities. Others preferred not to subject themselves to the hierarchical command system of the Resistance, in which they would have to follow the orders of Gaullists, non-Gaullists, Communists and other authoritarians. Because of their resistance activities a number of anarchists were arrested, imprisoned and, like the Lion brothers, sent to concentration camps.

The French anarchist groups worked closely with the underground Spanish anarchist movement in France and inside Spain opposing the Franco regime. They also had cooperative working arrangements with people and groups outside the anarchist movement.

In 1943 there was a clandestine anarchist conference in Toulouse. It was organised and attended by delegates from Marseille and the other cities mentioned above, plus a representative from the underground movement of Spanish libertarians living in the departments of Ariege and Haute-Garronne. The group formed at the conference published literature under the name International Revolutionary Syndicalist Federation, F.I.S.R. was the French acronym. It advocated revolution by means of the general strike, which would be a prelude to a new social order founded on universal human solidarity in the place of exploitation of human being by human being.

One of the posters the Marseille group wrote and published was “Death to The Brutes”. The title was intended to catch the eye of passer-by. The “brutes” referred to were the heads of the Nazi, Fascist, Francoist, Stalinist, Vichy, British and American states, the generals and their accomplices. The poster argued that they were all responsible for the war and the horrors that resulted from it.

One of the examples of distortion of anarchist wartime history which most disturbed Sauliere appeared in the best-selling book Everything Is Possible: The French Leftists 1929-1944 by Jean Rabaut (published in France in 1974). The book primarily recounted the history of the French Trotskyists, but also mentioned anarchist activity during World War II. Rabaut referred to the poster “Death to The Brutes,” although he did not reprint its text. He offered his readers a very distorted description of its contents, stating that it urged people to nail all “brutes” to doors, including those wearing the symbol of the “five-pointed star.” He went on to note that this supposed contempt for the wearers of the “five-pointed star” did not stop Sauliere and his comrades from risking their freedom and perhaps their lives by making forged identity papers to help Jews. In fact, the only truth in Rabaut’s statement was that the Marseille group did, indeed, produce papers to help Jews and politically involved people evade Nazi and Vichy persecution.

Sauliere was very disturbed by the false charges. He asserted that the text of the poster was not at all anti-Semitic, as implied by Rabaut. In fact, it did not refer to wearers of the “five-pointed star” at all, but to those who wore the red star, symbol of the Bolshevik state. The point was that the rulers of the Soviet state should be viewed like all other rulers.

Sauliere insisted that anti-Semitism never existed among the anarchists involved in the Marseille group, and to imply that it did was a gross falsification. When challenged by Sauliere, Rabaut, in a letter, admitted that he had not checked the facts relating to his charge, apologised for his misstatement and promised to correct it in future editions of his book.

Sauliere and his anarchist comrades in Marseille, as noted above, produced forged identity papers to help political refugees and Jews. They also sheltered a number of people who were fleeing the Vichy government and Nazi occupation authorities. A couple they had assisted were arrested by the Vichy police and were intimidated into revealing the source of their false documents. Because of this, on August 3, 1943, Sauliere, his companion Julie Vinas (who was a Spanish political refugee) and another French anarchist, Etienne Chauvet, were arrested by the Vichy police. When the police broke in, the three had just printed and were preparing to put up the poster “Death to The Brutes.” Three other comrades who were planning to help with the pestering were warned by a neighbour in time to avoid capture.

The arrested anarchists were interrogated for five days, but luckily were not tortured. The men were sent to the Chave prison in Marseille and Vinas to a prison hospital.

In prison Sauliere/Arru and Chauvet met Communists, socialists and Gaullists, who had also been arrested for resistance activities. The two anarchists openly criticised the Petain regime and refused to go along with the celebration led by the Communists to mark the October Bolshevik revolution, or to sing the patriotic songs the Communists sang to impress the Gaullists with their loyalty to the French nation-state.

In March of 1944 some of the Communists, led by one Charles Poli, organised an escape, and invited the Gaullist prisoners to join them. The escape was a success; but seven of the political prisoners were left behind, five, including the two anarchists, for purely ideological reasons. In her book History Of The Partisan Groups (M.U.R.) Of Bouches-Du-Rhone From September 1943 To The Liberation (published in 1962) Madeleine Baudoin included an interview she had with the Communist Poli. He confirmed to Baudoin that the Communists purposely left the anarchists behind in prison because of their anti-patriotic attitudes. He was aware that the two had participated in the resistance in various ways, including forging papers to help people fleeing the Nazi and Vichy authorities. But, he asserted that, as Communists, he and his comrades loved France and were true patriots. They could tolerate differences of opinion and would have been willing even to help monarchists who shared their love of France, but not anti-patriotic anarchists.

After the escape, the political prisoners left behind were transferred to the prison at Aix, from which they escaped, at the end of April 1944, with help from the local resistance organisation. Many years later, Sauliere learned that he and Chauvet had been scheduled to be sent to a concentration camp from the prison at Aix.

On their way to safety, two of the escaped prisoners had to be left behind because they were too sick to walk the distance to the rendezvous point arranged for meeting their local resistance guide. Those who made it were taken into the countryside, where a maquis unit was forming. The escaped prisoners were asked by the F.T.P. leader if they wanted to join or go their own way. The two anarchists decided to go off on their own to rejoin their own contacts. So, after a few weeks of rest, they were given forged identity papers and food and were escorted to a town. Sauliere then contacted other anarchists and was joined by his companion Vinas, who had been released six months earlier. Together they went to Toulouse at the end of June, 1944 and re-contacted other anarchist comrades there.

The groups in the region had been inactive since the August 1943 arrest because of fear of police surveillance; but activity was renewed as soon as Sauliere and Vinas became involved again. In August, 1944, the Toulouse group put out a pamphlet, which was printed and distributed the same day the German army evacuated the city. They had great hopes for the future – everyone “assumed that the Francoist regime would now be overthrown and a republic could be restored in Spain.

Although Sauliere understood fairly clearly that the end of the Second World War would not bring the rule of social justice, at first he believed that things would surely be better than before the war. He felt that things would have to be different because people had learned from the mistakes of the past and because all of the political ideologues had been discredited. But he later recognised that he and his comrades had been naively optimistic; and, by the 1970s, he sadly acknowledged that there was less social justice after the war than before. Despite this, Sauliere continued to believe that he and his anarchist comrades had acted as they had to. When interviewed in Marseille in 1970 by Madeleine Baudoin, he asserted that, given the same situation, he would do it all again, but would try to learn more lessons from history and not repeat mistakes.

After the war Sauliere continued his anarchist activities, settling in Marseille again. In 1948, because of his wartime draft resistance, he was sentenced to a five-year prison term. But this was suspended because he was able to produce twenty- eight affidavits from people who had known him in the resistance.