This is a first report as of late July 2015… To be continued – hopefully-.
After a 35 year existence of a political/social movement (current), loosely referred to as an anarchist /antiauthoritarian movement, which in many cases it included organizational branches and individuals of the radical Marxist left, Marxist and anarchist autonomy, pacifist libertarians, and after several attempts to create an anarchist organization to link and unite all those independent collective entities and individuals (who couldn’t find themselves within a political collective) had failed, on December 2012 a more serious call appeared to reattempt to form such an organization. The initial call dated Dec.19 2012 came from 4 influential and long standing collectives after a lengthy discussion between them on how to address the need for further organization. Apparently this created a wide interest by several other collectives from Athens and the rest of Greece which became a complex process on how to develop commonly announced proposals towards organization and of political positions on the most important issues that anarchists frequently have positions on. The detailed content is yet unknown.
Outside the sphere of those collectives that participated in the effort for nearly two years there was silence and anticipation that something serious was baking in the oven. Some could smell and speculate but increasingly there was curiosity on what could possibly take so long. Eventually the silence broke from a dissatisfied collective called ASMPA (Anarchist Collective towards the Militant Proletarian Reconstitution) who apparently left the effort after a fierce disagreement with the rest on whether a collective (Kathodon) should and could be amongst the rest. This was a reminder and evidence that this effort was ongoing and it was widely supported by nearly 20 collectives from all around Greece.
The disagreement appears to be related to an event dating back to February 2013when members of Kathodon had participated in an attack on a squatted building, and later distributed within a close circle of collectives, a statement explaining and supporting their action on what had happened. Shortly after this there was a second document explaining why ASMPA could no longer tolerate the reactions of the rest covering up the responsibilities of Kathodon and accuses those that tolerate them of acting as a partisan protectionist mechanism. As negative as the statements describing the effort of political organization as they were by ASMPA it became the only source and evidence that such effort was still in effect and evolving as many were speculating it had been abandoned. All evidence till then only hinted towards a single effort.
In early June 2015 a new statement (a pre-announcement of a tending process) came out, with only one of the original collectives (Circle of Fire) signing it together with a few other collectives, three from Athens, one from Salonica, and one from Patra. One of the newest collectives (O72) appears to be an evolution of an older collective and one of the initial callers. Another from Salonica appears to be a split of an older Anarchist collective. The published information on all these detail appear to be hazy and possibly of lesser importance.
This pre-announcement relates this effort to the original call and directly talks of the natural evolution of this process to create a political organization. Meanwhile if one goes back to the original call and of announcements made by individual collectives (Antipnoia for example directly states that this effort is one for the creation of a federation) one would expect that the evolution of this effort was clearly in developing the foundation of a conference to create a political federation, not a political organization. This June announcement by the six collectives did not clearly answer what ever happened to the rest but it was obvious that there was a split, as collectives appearing in the ASMPA announcements that were together in this same effort did not appear to be together in this later update of the process.
To answer all those curious cats of what happened, in late July a new update came from the remaining collectives appearing to acknowledge those forming the organization and wishing them the best of luck and willingness to cooperate in the future but also pre-announcing a call for the initiation of an open process of creating a federation. As they say the pre-conference will take place in October 2015 and the process will be determined there in taking a year’s time to develop the final declaration of the foundation of the federation. Their address was directed to anarchists, the exploited and oppressed. Will the a-political individual entities get up from their couch to join an anarchist federation due to the fact they are exploited in the workplace and/or oppressed in their community? We shall refrain from commenting any more.
Whether this adds to the confusion and whether it further feeds the curiosity and speculation is unknown. Neither of these announcements declare something specific, of a date, a place, a contact, for the outsiders to act upon, but is just a “pre-announcement” of an “announcement” to come. We are all looking forward for the two separate efforts to take the real first step in organizing. It is logical that something that couldn’t materialize for 35 years, and repeatedly failed, wouldn’t be easy and it definitely couldn’t make everyone happy. There seems to be a huge list of self proclaimed “anarchist collectives” that have either refused to participate, were excluded (not directly but by the way the calling was stated some couldn’t see themselves within it), or departed the effort, and maintain their autonomous paths or other forms of collective associations (sort lived cooperations, loose platforms, etc).
One such association that has a significant history of participating in major political events is the so called “West” (Dhytica) which includes some but not all the collectives of the western suburbs of Athens, mainly Resalto, Sinialo, and Thersitis, and their satellite projects. We cannot speculate whether the reasons are political or are of different nature relating to the geography of the movement. Equally important to note is that the thousands of individuals that have for years participated in the action rich a/a movement, especially the massive youth current that sprung from the December 2008 insurrection (and riots), does not participate and is not included in the above mentioned groups. That is they never realized the need to join or create strictly political collectives. Some only participate in social collectives or syndicalist actions of the general libertarian horizontal movement, and the rest refused to see themselves as parts of a collective. They answer calls to general issue related assemblies in the Exarchia district, they appear in protests and demonstrations, parties, concerts, etc.
It is a question and source of speculation of whether either or both efforts for organization and federation will be able to attract the majority of individuals who maintain the tendency to remain as “individuals” and whether this tendency is politically motivated as “individualists” proclaim, or it is just luck of interest and motivation to do anything more than noise during massive action on the street level. If we said “…to be continued” it would be an under-statement, as there are many that believe that the condition of this decaying movement and these organizational efforts came a little too late, and the 35 year old movement is gone and over. If anything is there to evolve would be something totally new and from scratch, as they proclaim. Or as insurrectionist individualists commonly say “from the ashes of the existing the new will arise”. Their infatuation with ashes and burning approach a level of collective psychopathology relating to pyromania.
The following three official announcements (in Greek) is what we officially know up to this point about the call for a nationwide anarchist political organization: