Tuesday, March 12th, 2013 – 7PM
131 8th Street, #4
Brooklyn, NY 11215
An appropriate follow-up to Thursday’s discussion “Organizing Strategies Against State Repression”, we welcome some anti-fascist organizers from Greece to discuss the work they’re doing confronting the rise of Golden Dawn, the state government that’s sanctioning it, and the economic situation which facilitates it. In this moment of global crisis we’re faced with the dual challenge of both dealing with both a rising repressive state apparatus, and the absolute necessity to create and promote a new culture of cooperation and support for each other as existing institutions are no longer able to meet our needs. Again, how to articulate an anti-capitalist and anti-state politics as not just abstract ideology but material reality, how to promote new forms of life between us, to create new spaces and territories which can demonstrate a social force, which reveal a collective strength, to overcome all those counterrevolutionary tendencies working against us. Or, how to live communism, while spreading anarchy.
In recent months we have focused on anti-police organizing in New York City, as well as responses to our city’s government turning towards strike and union-busting to advance the coming austerity. Our comrades in Greece know this story all too well, as the economic crisis, and the political uncertainty that’s come with it, are at far more advanced stages than we’ve yet to see here in New York. We should take this opportunity of these visitors being here with us as a chance to learn from their experiences and experiments in resistance, learn from their analyses of the strengths and weaknesses of the organizing they’ve attempted thus far, and get a sense of what we might see in the next years in the coming collapse of life as we’ve known it.
We have tried to play close attention to what’s been happening in southern Europe for these reasons, as Portugal, Spain, and Greece have seen far more dynamic and significant opposition to the kinds of austerity the bourgeoisie is promoting internationally as a solution to its own economic crisis. Like our comrades behind the “Global Uprising in the Age of Austerity” videos, the idea isn’t just that knowledge of what’s happening around the world is worthwhile for its own sake, but that it is necessary for our own analysis of capital and the bourgeois state as global phenomena, that this knowledge is critical as we develop own strategies to overcome them.
From the organizers:
As has been well documented in the media, the nation of Greece is in the throes of an economic meltdown. Austerity measures aimed at paying off an astronomical debt load have plunged the economy into a death spiral, and sparked nationwide protests and strikes. Unemployment is at 27 percent and climbing.
Much as the Nazis arose in Weimar Germany by exploiting similar economic conditions, Golden Dawn, an avowedly fascist political party, has been rapidly gaining power in Greece. Once an unimportant fringe group, Golden Dawn captured seven percent of the seats in parliament in the most recent election. Armed with government funding and the tacit cooperation of the police (many of whom are Golden Dawn members), fascists have adopted a strategy of terrorizing Greece’s immigrant population while offering rudimentary social services restricted to Greek citizens.
Ordinary Greeks are mobilizing to prevent the fascist takeover of their country. Neighborhood assemblies, immigrant solidarity groups, labor unions and other civil society organizations are resisting both Golden Dawn and the destructive government policies that created the economic collapse. Greek activists Sofia Papagiannaki, Thanasis Xirotsopanos and Vangelis Nanos are here to speak about fascism and resistance in their country.
This is a fund raising tour for anti-fascist movements in Greece. We suggest a $10 donation, but if you are able to give more, we hope that you will. Money will go to legal fees for anti-fascist organizers as well as the squats and free social centers that have become home base for anti-fascist organizing. Checks can be made out to The New Significance, a 501c3 not-for-profit that has generously agreed to handle funding for the tour.
Suggested donation: $5-$10. No one turned away for lack of funds!
Sofia Papagiannaki has studied Computer Science in University of Crete and works as software developer. Since 2006 participates in the free social center Nosotros in Exarchia, Athens. She has been in the editing team of Anti-authoritarian newspaper/magazine Babylonia and among the organizers of B-Fest, the festival organized by Babylonia newspaper in 2009, 2010 and 2011. She is active in Anti-authoritarian movement and several other initiatives specialized in ecological issues, such as committee of solidarity to Chalkidiki (against the mines of gold) and initiative for the waste management in Attiki.
Vangelis Nanos studied Music Technology and Acoustics at the Technological, Educational Institute of Crete. He participated in student movements from 1995 to 1999 (school occupations against school reform). At university Vangelis was active in the General University Assembly which, at this time, was established as the only student institution by abolishing the previous administrative council which consisted of political parties. Vangelis has also participated in an occupied self-managed space in Rethymno (Crete), the pirate radio station 91.1 FM, the Antiauthoritarian Movement of Rethymno, the magazine Toxicub, the newspaper Babylonia, solidarity movement with the Zapatistas (one school for Chiapas) and the anti-globalization movement. He was active in the university occupation movement of 2006 to 2007, the Law School occupation during the December 2008 uprising, solidarity with the hunger strike of the 300 immigrants in 2011, and the Syntagma square movement. Vangelis is currently active in the free social center Nosotros, in Athens, the Anti-authoritarian Movement of Athens, the pirate radio station Entasi FM, the B-Fest festival, the occupation of the Botanical Garden in Petroupoli and the antifascist struggle (patrols).
Thanasis Xirotsopanos is an activist involved in the anarchist movement since early 90’s. He participated in the squat community, the anti-globalization movement and social struggle concerning ecology, immigrants and free social spaces. He is an active member of Anti-authoritarian Movement and it’s structures since the beginning. (Nosotros, Babylonia newspaper, Antifa actions, B-Festival, etc.)
Antifa Speaking Tour 2013: http://antifaevents.wordpress.com/
From the Greek Streets: http://blog.occupiedlondon.org/
Global Uprisings: http://globaluprisings.org/
Interference Archive: http://interferencearchive.org/
The New Significance: http://www.thenewsignificance.com/
NYC ANTIFA: http://nycantifa.wordpress.com/
Interference Archive explores the relationship between cultural production and social movements. This work manifests in public exhibitions, a study and social center, talks, screenings, publications, workshops, and an online presence. They have recently organized events on movements in Quebec (Épopée, Translating the printemps arable, and Ècole de la Montagne Rouge), Mexico City (Sublevarte Colectivo), Japan (Todos Somos Japon), Paris (Les Cafards).