Cincinnati, Ohio (USA): Letter writing night

We had a really nice time here in Cincinnati. While we had the set up inside, it immediately moved outside due to the weather being so pleasant! For the event we had individual mini sheets with brief bios and mailing information to use while we wrote letters and for people to take home at the end of the night. In my experience, letter writing in social settings can be tricky for some people due to getting easily distracted or general anxiety for newcomers, so we wanted to make sure that writing at home was encouraged too.

My favorite part of these get-togethers is the ability to share ideas and thoughts with each other. We had people experienced with these topics, people without much prior knowledge at all, and people who haven’t seen that there is a local community for this until now. The June 11th statements from prisoners were read aloud and all featured very different tones and ideas. Marius mentioned the concept of “othering” and I think we’re all too familiar with seeing circles break off in different directions when it would be better if they’d work together, or the rejection of new ideas which can turn into our groups becoming smaller and smaller. The different tones, ideas, and concepts in these statements made for really rewarding discussions. We all struggle with figuring out the BEST way to do things. A big topic of discussion was how writing letters can be stressful while trying to figure out what is and is not okay to write about, send, or create. But someone gave their input on how that is purposeful. They want to make it complicated, so that momentum is stopped or so that people are too overwhelmed to start in the first place. It encouraged everyone and cleared our heads, making the process easier and focusing on the positives instead of the negatives, and empowered everyone present.

At the end of the night, everyone walked away with new perspectives and a new momentum. We all know the feeling of being worn down in our continually efforts, and that can come with immense guilt while we compare it to what anarchist prisoners are facing, which can lead to the defeatist attitude the state relies on so heavily. With June 11th and all letter writing to prisoners, the lesson time and time again is that we need to practice empathy and love. It reminds us that we need to do that on the outside as well. It  is another act of solidarity, as we foster the friendships of those around us, welcome newcomers with encouragement, and continue to build something much bigger than ourselves with stability and continued empathy.

That goes to organizers and participants all around the globe. An annual day to remember that we are not alone in our efforts and that these prisoners are not alone while confined to their cages. I cannot express my gratitude to all involved, but we will continue to do our best in showing it through our actions and support.

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (USA): Graffiti, banners, BBQ

For June 11th anarchist solidarity in Philly took a few different forms. In the lead up to the 11th stickers and posters were put up. Graffiti for anarchist prisoners was written on the Grays Ferry Bridge.

On June 11th a BBQ fundraiser was held. Vegan food and copies of Fireant were given away and money was collected for anarchist prisoners and local anti-repression efforts.

Anarchist prisoners to the street

North Rhine-Westphalia (Germany): Police dog training school burned

5th June, North Rhine Westphalia.

“Fight the police, fight the speciesist system!

On June 5th, as members of the Animal Liberation Front, we set fire to a training school for police dogs.

We see the legitimacy of this action in the fact that the police, a classist, sexist and racist institution, has no right to use any animals as weapons of oppression.

Let us remind you that the police serves capitalism and is, therefore, an enemy in the struggle for the liberation of humans and animals.

With this action we want to make it clear that we are growing and spreading; not only in numbers but in strategy; that we are attacking the root problems instead of focusing on symptoms; and that we do not accept the complicity of the police and the animal exploitation industry.

Every time the police arrests one of us (be it for smashing windows or for disrupting a McDonald’s), they collaborate with the animal exploitation industry and attack us all. It’s time for this to stop.

We want to frame this action as a “rage celebration” for June 11th, “International day of solidarity with long term anarchist prisoners”, and send greetings especially to Matthias, who has been imprisoned in Switzerland for more than 6 months still awaiting trial accused of smashing butcher shop windows.

For a world without oppression, without capitalism, and without police – ignite a revolution!

Let’s not forget to mention our McDonald’s-smashing friends, may the broken glass bring us freedom!

Fire to prisons, fire to the police, fire to McDonald’s, fire to the speciesist system!

Animal Liberation Front.”

Source: Indymedia, translation by Unoffensive Animal

Brisbane (Australia): Posters & banner

Ⓐ𝙸𝚗𝚝𝚎𝚛𝚗𝚊𝚝𝚒𝚘𝚗𝚊𝚕 𝙳𝚊𝚢 𝚘𝚏 𝚂𝚘𝚕𝚒𝚍𝚊𝚛𝚒𝚝𝚢 𝚠𝚒𝚝𝚑 𝙻𝚘𝚗𝚐-𝚃𝚎𝚛𝚖 𝙰𝚗𝚊𝚛𝚌𝚑𝚒𝚜𝚝  𝙿𝚛𝚒𝚜𝚘𝚗𝚎𝚛𝚜 𝚆𝚘𝚛𝚕𝚍𝚠𝚒𝚍𝚎Ⓐ

Today, as anarchists, we stand in solidarity with our comrades held hostage by the  state. We remind ourselves too, to be brave and recognise the risks we, and others, take. We look to prisons as the epitome of state control. They represent everything that we see as necessary to burn in order for a free society. To note today especially is all anarchist prisoners worldwide, including our comrade Jock Palfreeman  imprisoned in Bulgaria. We recognise the intersection between our struggle and the gulags run by so-called Australia, the proposed new men’s prison in (not the) Queensland and all other memorials to the prison-industrial complex. Fire to the prisons.
———
We’ve included some words by our comrade Juan Flores, held hostage at a Maximum Security Prison in Chile. They write:
“I will not live as the law tells me. I will advance on that path that other unruly people have already covered… that of action! Together with my comrades, together with my loved ones and those who give themselves faithfully and constant to the fight against the prevailing ideology, because I will not live in the shadows of resignation and indifference, I will experience the intensity of a life fully lived… authentic and free life… life without restrictions. I will boldly defend the possibility of developing myself without obeying.
Let’s give life to something, something strong that inflames and destroys everything that is at the service of power and its bourgeoisie… something that avenges and removes the dominant face with all our rage, seeking continuity, that the roar of chaos destroys the eardrums of all the powerful… we break his laws and we put an end to centuries of silence!!!
WE ATTACK AND DESTROY THOSE RESPONSIBLE FOR REPRESSION AND EXPLOITATION!!! WE ATTACK AND DESTROY YOUR JAILS, POLICE STATIONS AND COURTS!!!”
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Head to june11.org for more information compiled on the meaning of June 11.
Head to afund.antirep.net to donate to the International Anarchist Defence Fund.
Head to aqab website to get some beautiful propaganda by AQAB as a fundraiser for the International Anarchist Defence Fund .
We hope our comrades held hostage by states worldwide hear our collective call of solidarity. We hope they know that all hope is not lost. We send them our love.

June 11, 2019 statement from Jeremy Hammond

A raised fist to you all this June 11th! May this letter find you in revolutionary health and spirits. Although I am unable to be with you physically on this occasion due to being held in captivity by the BOP, I still feel connected with you on this day of solidarity. It was nice to run the 5K with you a few days ago for Running Down The Walls. I also sent out a few dozen origami models decorated with June 11th anarchist tattoos; you should be receiving those shortly.

Big ups to the other anarchist comrades behind bars. We have been through a lot of trials and tribulations over the years: harassment from abusive guards, solitary confinement, diesel therapy, the mind-numbing frustrations from battling the brutal bureaucracy for so many years. Never have we been alone, however. Despite every effort the system has made to cut us off from our friends and loved ones, from disconnecting us from the rotations of the Earth, we have still been able to stay connected to the movement. The letters, the books, the messages of encouragement – by undermining the punitive, isolating deterrent effect of the prison system, we are strengthened to keep struggling through the storm.

For all this, I want to express my appreciation for the Anarchist Black Cross chapters, the Books to Prisoners groups, the Friends of AK Press book club, those who sent in their personal zines: your work has an immeasurable positive effect on our lives behind bars. Know that every prison library we’ve passed through is saturated with radical literature, ready for the next curious soul looking for something interesting to check out. Also inspiring are the various solidarity actions, hearing that people are still out there taking direct action to destroy the old world and manifest new ones. Where we are, we often aren’t in the best position to be hacking and smashing things ourselves, but we can still rest easy knowing that things are still being hacked and smashed.

This June 11th also falls on the yearly “Officer Appreciation Week” (a separate event from the National Police Week last month). Across the federal prison system, we are locked down in our cells during the day while the pigs feast on fancy food from the free world, throw basketball tournaments, and give each other cheap awards manufactured by prisoners. They clap each other on the back when all the while their brethren continue to get away with murdering innocent people in the streets. It’s hard to imagine what sickeningly nationalistic sociopath could support such a week – but then again, this is the United States, headed by a fascist pig that pardons racist police and war criminals!

Watching the sky fucking fall from afar, it is sometimes frustrating not being able to do much about it. I’m often asked was all worth it, and how I have kept from being burnt out. Though I have regrets about not carrying out my actions with complete precision, I have never once regretted my involvement in the anarchist movement or committing the specific Anonymous activities that have led to my incarceration. My only regret is that I didn’t carry out my actions with complete precision, and that I was caught too early before I could complete many other half-finished plans!

Reflecting on this year’s theme of combating amnesia, drawing inspiration, and looking to previous generations, I thought about some things I recently read in Nelson Mandela’s autobiography Long Walk to Freedom. On multiple occasions, the authorities offered him release from prison if he would only renounce his actions and condemn the use of violence. Each and every time, he refused to turn his back against his comrades! There is no greater integrity than those who have been tested and stayed true, keeping their heads up high for so, so long. Having developed an appreciation for the immense gravity and preciousness of time, I want to express my deepest respects for you all serving long-term sentences, and commit myself to work towards your immediate and unconditional release.

Until the last prisoner is freed and the last prison burned to the ground!
Jeremy (A)

from Free Jeremy

 

June 11, 2019 statement from Kevin Berry of the Vaughn17

Peace and solidarity to all the men and women that’s behind enemy lines, who continue to resist and rebel against this oppressive system we face everyday.

Also peace and solidarity to all the organizations who support us and fight for us non-stop. A special shout out to Philly, Pittsburgh and Chicago Anarchist Black Cross (ABC), D.C Crew, R.A.M NYC, Ghost Town Prisoner Support and two friends of mine T and N, without all of y’all the Vaughn17 supporters, none of the not guilty verdicts and the charges dismissed for the remaining comrades wouldn’t be possible. So thanks to y’all for being there for us, the non-stop work y’all put in and the non-stop pressure y’all put on DE DOC, PA DOC and the judicial system to make sure were always good. As y’all know the fight continues, we still have three comrades* that have to face a corrupt judicial system. So to all that read this support these  brothers and go to their trials the more supports they have the better, so support the #Vaughn17.

Now to my June 11th statement. As I sit here in my cell and write this I really don’t know what to write right now. As I told friends of mine I don’t consider myself to be a anarchist. I wouldn’t put a label on what I do and stand for as a man. I’m just write how I feel and what’s on my mind and hopefully other brothers and sisters behind enemy lines feel the same way. I hate all authority figures (police, C.O’s, judge etc.) with a passion. Some may ask why? My answer to that is why not! These so called authority figures don’t do anything but oppress people mainly people of color, trans  men and women, and homeless people, so that’s why I hate them. I want to touch on something else I am passionate about. The abolishment of all theses concentration camps (prisons). I am with the abolishment of theses concentration camps “By any means necessary” as Malcolm X once famously put it. ^^ But to do away with theses concentration camps it must first start with us, the men and women who are on these camps, who endure every form of oppression daily, may it be verbally, mentally, physically or sexually, we face it everyday by our oppressor! To see the abolishment of these camps we must resist and rebel against our oppressor. We speak of resistance all the time but know that “words with no actions is just talk”. It starts with us, and it’s time we stand for something or continue to fall for anything. Fred Hampton
“Dare to struggle”
You dare to win

Peace to all
#Vaughn17 Kev

*At the time of publishing only two of the #Vaughn17 still face charges, Obediah Miller has recently had his case quietly dismissed! For information about the 17 and up to date addresses (including Kevin’s) visit vaughn17support.org

Smart communications/PA DOC
Kevin Berry #NT0583
SCI Benner Township
PO Box 33028
St Petersburg, FL 33733

When sending to Kevin keep in mind that since he has been transferred to Pennsylvania mail for him is sent to a processing facility in Florida where it is scanned electronically then emailed to the prison where it is printed.

June 11, 2019: On Taking It All Down by Sean Swain

Hope I’m still alive and kicking this June 11. It’s possible that I’m facing imminent death. Now, don’t panic. Okay. Wait. Please panic a little bit. It will make me feel loved and valued. If you don’t at all, that would hurt my feelings.

It all started with an article posted for last June 11 that advocated the use of drones to drop guns into prisons. The creepy sexual-predator lawyer for the ODRC who groped me in 2013 – Trevor Matthew Clark – wrote up a ridiculous conduct report accusing me of rioting and gang activity and extortion related to that online posting. You can check it out here. It must be worth reading, as prison officials tried to kill me for it. Continue reading “June 11, 2019: On Taking It All Down by Sean Swain”