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Anarchy in Greece - An Editorial
by A.nonimo
Tuesday Dec 9th, 2008 12:13 PM
Picture this - a group of anarchists attack a police car, one of the policemen shoots dead one of the people involved - a 15 year old. What happens next?
When it comes to political violence, once in a while, an event transpires that serves as a reminder of what a different world it is outside the gold plated n' barb wired gated community we call the United States. Picture this - a group of anarchists attack a police car, one of the policemen shoots dead one of the people involved - a 15 year old. What happens next? In the good ol' U.S. of A, it wouldn't be too far fetched to say nothing short of hysteria - in the defense of the police department that is. The policeman involved would probably be called a "hero", the anarchists "terrorists" and conservative and liberal pundits alike would spend the next two weeks trying to out-do each other in describing the Draconian ways in which the said radicals should be punished. But in Greece, that isht don't get no play.

For almost four days now, Greek Anarchists, through the unabashed use of aggressive, violent tactics, have effectively started an insurrection of such proportions, it threatens to topple the government. Fire bombs, rocks, and sheer use of numbers have been employed to destroy property, seize buildings, and go toe-to-toe with riot cops in the streets. It's astounding to watch - Anarchists actually living up to all the talk about directly challenging authority by using the same violent methods employed by the state, and winning. As this is being written, the Greek government (a conservative one) is actually calling for the prosecution of the police officer who murdered the youth and may be teetering on collapse. Whoever said the language of violence is only acceptable when employed by the state, and can never yield positive results obviously isn't paying attention.

And if the previous sentence makes you uncomfortable, remember this - The last time Greece experienced this level of social upheaval was during the 1980s under similar circumstances. According to the UK Guardian, Greek police haven't killed a teen since then. Yes, you heard that right - the Greek police haven't murdered a teenager for almost 20 years, and when they did, Greece paid a very high price for it. Police officers in the United States in contrast kill people all the time - and for lesser crimes.

Take the city of Inglewood (Los Angeles) for example, in this year alone at least 4 people have died by police gunfire, almost all of them unarmed. http://articles.latimes.com/2008/sep/02/local/me-inglewood2
This is to say nothing of other high profile cases like Sean Bell or Amadou Diallo or Devin Brown - The latter of which, was only 13 when LAPD shot him multiple times. What justice was served to the police officer who committed the murder? a) none, b) zero, c) zilch, d) all of the above http://news.pacificnews.org/news/view_article.html?article_id=54b811d5b265984eeed3b4584cb38963

You know, an astute observer might infer that American police officers are more times than not, unaccountable for their actions, and quite possibly completely out of control. One might also infer that the lack of visceral public outrage each time a cop shoots dead another citizen (which is pretty often) leads to only more of the same behavior - either that, or Americans have a deep seated cultural deference towards authority, one that allows us to only acknowledge violence when it travels up the hierarchy but not down. (And honestly, why can't it be both?) To that end, American Anarchists have much to learn from the example set by the folks in Athens. Middle class liberals will probably be forever stuck in the pacifist tradition, but those of us who'd demand a leveling of the playing field with the state, might wanna learn how to "speak Greek."

Comments  (Hide Comments)

by A.nonimo
Tuesday Dec 9th, 2008 1:13 PM
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by A.nonimo
Tuesday Dec 9th, 2008 1:16 PM
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by A.nonimo
Tuesday Dec 9th, 2008 1:17 PM
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by dim
Tuesday Dec 9th, 2008 2:24 PM
The police had completely lost control yesterday, so on Tuesday they used every mean possible to gain control of the situation. The riot cops attacked the protesters in many occasions for no reason, trying to break up even the peaceful protesters, took out the guns and opened fire, made numerous arrests, used huge amounts of tear gas in urban areas and thousand of residents had trouble breathing.

On Tuesday morning, thousands of highschool students were on the streets again. In many cities they classed with the police and there were arrests. During the past 2 days in EVERY greek city, even the smaller ones there were demonstrations and attacks on police stations and banks by students and others.

The media are covering the police and they follow the police's guiding lines trying to make the people turn against the protesters. They are trying to scare the people and stop them from participating on the revolt. They also mislead the viewers, saying that the anarchists are burning down small businesses and shops without showing any images. However the vast majority of the attacked and burned buildings are banks, governmental buildings (ministries etc), multinational businesses and big corporations.

Today the funeral of Alexis took place and the police in many occasions used violence to stop students that were heading to the cemetery to attend. However thousands of students and people showed up. The streets around the cemetery were full. The police was also there when they had no right to be and they were provocative as always. Reports say that riot cops were shouting to students things as “Where is Alexis now?” and “You will be next”. Of course the people reacted and started throwing rocks at them and setting fire barricades. The police's plan was obviously to break up the people attending the funeral and they used tear gas and their sticks on students who where there for the funeral of their friend. One (at least) cop, took out his gun and fired 15 shots! The police said that it was only one shot because he was alone and he was surrounded and attacked by anarchists but the shots from cameras are different. At the moment of shooting, there is a group of about 15 bike cops together, the protesters are far away and the cop just takes his gun out and start firing in the air!
Photos and video of the shooting: http://athens.indymedia.org/front.php3?lang=el&article_id=937475

In the afternoon the demonstrations and classes continued in many cities. In Athens and Thessaloniki around the universities, in Patras protesters try to reach the Central police station. In smaller cities the same.

In Patras right-wing thugs and members of neo-nazi groups together with undercover cops are helping the police (this it not the first time that they act together, there is a huge issue in greece about their collaboration in numerous occasions) by hunting protesters and throwing rocks at them. Even the city mayor confirmed that! In the early 90's, in the city of Patras, in a similar situation, a teacher was MURDERED by a right-wing thug (at the time he was a member of the then and now in power party) who was again helping the police, during school strikes. The thugs are in groups of 10-20 people, carrying sticks and knives, organized by the cops are walking around in the streets trying to find protesters. A protester was STUBBED! The media say they are plain people and shop owners trying to protect their stores but this is not true since there are reports that only the police, banks and governmental building were attacked in Patras. Lies, lies, lies by the media!

Right-wing thugs and members of the Chrisi Augi (neo-nazi group) seem to work together with the police in other cities too. There are reports of a girl stubbed in Athens and protesters and immigrants attacked! It's hard to gather information. The media keep lying about shop-owners and raged residents...

Tenths of gatherings and demonstrations outside greek embassies and consulates took place across europe! There is need for international solidarity!

more in english: http://athens.indymedia.org/front.php3?lang=el&article_id=933218
by a
Tuesday Dec 9th, 2008 2:55 PM
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Check out breaking news updates straight out of Greece, in English: http://www.occupiedlondon.org/blog/
by Reboundstudent
Tuesday Dec 9th, 2008 9:42 PM
The difference in the States, of course, is that everyone is innocent until proven guilty... including cops. The riots started almost before the boy's body was cold, without any investigation or discussion of proper justice. Justice is discovering the truth-or as clear a picture of truth as can be rendered-and given punishments according. Destroying innocent people's property and throwing rocks at people just because they happen to be the same profession as the suspected murderer? (When, it should be noted, the riot police had not lifted a finger in defense except to use non-lethal tear gas.) Spare me the rants about how great anarchy is. Maybe anarchy is swell for the anarchists-but for all the people whose businesses are looted, whose government is toppled, before there is even an investigation?

If the protests and looting had gone on before the government announced the officer's (AND his partner's) arrest, that might end on understandable. But that the riots continue even after justice is promised suggests that the young Greek population no only have no trust in their government, but think the only way to build society is to burn it down, even if their violence might claim another innocent life.

And let's see some statistics on how many homicides are done by cops. It's not to say that cops are incorruptable and don't make mistakes, but when a suspect won't lower his gun, or when he has a hostage, or he's threatening an officer... how many "cop" homicides are cold-blood murders as opposed to self-defense? Or do boys in blue not have the right to self-defense, according to you?
by Aaron Aarons
Wednesday Dec 10th, 2008 7:16 AM
The cops are the defenders of the privileges of the same class that has long brought misery to the majority of the world's people and is now, thanks to decades of extreme looting, bringing it to a lot more people in the richer countries. The particular incident that triggered these riots was just the spark that has started a prairie fire. Let's hope that that fire spreads to the rest of the capitalist world. In fact, let's not "hope" that it spreads; let's help it spread!
by cirstofolos
Tuesday Dec 16th, 2008 12:22 PM

(new-updated Communique by the Polytechnic University Occupation,
Athens, Friday 12th December 2008)

THEIR DEMOCRACY MURDERS…

On Saturday December 6, 2008, Alexandros Grigoropoulos, a 15-year old comrade, was murdered in cold blood, with a bullet in the chest by the cop Epaminondas Korkoneas of the special guards` police force in the area of Exarchia.

Contrary to the statements of politicians and journalists who are accomplices to the murder, this was not an “isolated incident”, but an explosion of the state repression which systematically and in an organised manner targets those who resist, those who revolt, the anarchists and antiauthoritarians.
It is the peak of state terrorism which is expressed with the upgrading of the role of repressive mechanisms, their continuous armament, the increasing levels of violence they use, with the doctrine of “zero tolerance”, with the slandering media propaganda that criminalises those who are fighting against authority.

It is these conditions that prepare the ground for the intensification of repression, attempting to extract social consent beforehand, and arming the weapons of state murderers in uniform that are targeting the people who fight, the youth, the damned who are revolting in the entire country.
Lethal violence against the people in the social and class struggle is aiming at everybody’s submission, serving as exemplary punishment, meant to spread fear.

It is the escalation of the generalized attack of the state and the bosses against the whole of society, in order to impose more rigid conditions of exploitation and oppression, to consolidate control and repression. An attack that is reflected everyday on poverty, social exclusion, the blackmail to adjust in the world of social and class divisions, the ideological war launched by the dominant mechanisms of manipulation (the mass media). An attack which is raging in every social space, demanding from the oppressed their division and silence. From the schools’ cells and the universities to the dungeons of waged slavery with the hundreds of dead workers in the so-called “working accidents” and the poverty embracing large numbers of the population… From the minefields in the borders, the pogroms and the murders of immigrants and refugees to the numerous “suicides” in prisons and police stations… from the “accidental shootings” in police blockades to violent repression of local resistances, Democracy is showing its teeth!

In these conditions of fierce exploitation and oppression, and against the daily looting and pillage that the state and the bosses are launching, taking as spoils the oppressed people’s labour force, their life, their dignity and freedom, the accumulated social suffocation is accompanying today the rage erupting in the streets and the barricades for the murder of Alexandros.

From the first moment after the murder of Alexandros, spontaneous demonstrations and riots appear in the centre of Athens, the Polytechnic, the Economic and the Law Schools are being occupied and attacks against state and capitalist targets take place in many different neighbourhoods and in the city centre. Demonstrations, attacks and clashes erupt in Thessaloniki, Patras, Volos, Chania and Heraklion in Crete, in Giannena, Komotini, Xanthi, Serres, Sparti, Alexandroupoli, Mytilini. In Athens, in Patission street -outside the Polytechnic and the Economic School- clashes last all night. Outside the Polytechnic the riot police make use of plastic bullets.

On Sunday the 7th December, thousands of people demonstrate towards the police headquarters in Athens, attacking the riot police. Clashes of unprecedented tension spread in the streets of the city centre, lasting until late at night. Many demonstrators are injured and a number of them are arrested.

From Monday morning until today the revolt spreads and becomes generalized. The last days are full of uncountable social events: militant high school students’ demonstrations ending up -in many cases- in attacks against police stations and clashes with the cops in the neighborhoods of Athens and in the rest of the country, massive demonstrations and conflicts between protestors and the police in the centre of Athens, during which there are assaults in banks, big department stores and ministries, siege of the Parliament in Syntagma square, occupations of public buildings, demonstrations ending in riots and attacks against state and capitalist targets in many different cities.

The attacks of the police against youth and generally against people who are fighting, the dozens of arrests and beatings of demonstrators, and in some cases the threatening of protestors by cops waving their guns, as well as their cooperation with the fascist thugs -like in the incidents of Patras, where cops together with fascists charged against the rebels of the city-, are the methods in which the state’s uniformed dogs are implementing the doctrine of “zero tolerance” under the commands of the political bosses in order to suppress the wave of revolt which was triggered last Saturday night.

The terrorism by the police occupation army is completed by the exemplary punishment of those who are arrested and now facing severe accusations leading to their imprisonment:
In the city of Larisa, 8 persons arrested are prosecuted with the “anti”terrorist law and were imprisoned facing charges for “criminal organization”. 25 immigrants who were arrested during the riots in Athens face the same charges as well. Also in Athens, 5 of the arrested on Monday were imprisoned, and 5 more who were arrested Wednesday night are in custody and will be taken in front of a prosecutor next Monday, facing felony charges.

At the same time, a deceitful propaganda war is launched against the people fighting, paving the way for repression, for the returning in the normality of social injustice and submission.

The explosive events right after the murder caused a wave of international mobilization in memory of Alexandros and in solidarity with the revolted who are fighting in the streets, inspiring a counter-attack to the totalitarianism of democracy. Concentrations, demonstrations, symbolic attacks in greek embassies and consulates and other solidarity actions have taken place in cities of Cyprus, Germany, Spain, Denmark, Holland, G. Britain, France, Italy, Poland, Turkey, USA, in Ireland, Sweden, Switzerland, Australia, Slovakia, Croatia, Russia, Bulgaria, Rumania, Belgium, N. Zealand, Argentina, Mexico, Chile and elsewhere.

We continue the occupation of the Polytechnic School which started on Saturday night, creating a space for all people who are fighting to gather, and one more permanent focus of resistance in the city.

In the barricades, the occupations, the demonstrations and the assemblies we keep alive the memory of Alexandros, but also the memory of Michalis Kaltezas, of Carlo Giuliani, Michalis Prekas, Christoforos Marinos and of all the comrades who were murdered by the state. We don’t forget the social-class war in which these comrades fell and we keep open the front of a total refusal to the aged world of Authority. Our actions, our attempts are the living cells of the insubordinate free world that we dream, without masters and slaves, without police, armies, prisons and borders.

The bullets of the murderers in uniform, the arrests and beatings of demonstrators, the chemical gas war launched by the police forces, the ideological attack of Democracy not only cannot manage to impose fear and silence, but they become for the people the reason to raise against state terrorism the cries of the struggle for freedom, to abandon fear and to meet –more and more every day, youth, high school and university students, immigrants, jobless, workers- in the streets of revolt. To let the rage overflow and drown them!

THE STATE, THE BOSSES, THEIR THUGS AND THEIR LACKEYS ARE MOCKING US, ROBBING US AND KILLING US!

LET’S ORGANISE, COUNTER-ATTACK AND SMASH THEM!

THESE NIGHTS BELONG TO ALEXIS!

IMMEDIATE RELEASE OF ALL THE ARRESTED

We are sending our solidarity to everyone occupying universities, schools and state buildings, demonstrating and clashing with the state murderers all over the country.

We are sending our solidarity to all comrades abroad who are mobilizing, transferring our voice everywhere. In the great battle for global social liberation we stand together!


The Occupation of the Polytechnic University in Athens,
Friday, December 12, 2008

The assembly of the Occupation takes place everyday at 8pm in the Polytechnic.