And Now They Are Coming For You.
An article on the state’s entrapment cases against anarchists recently, and how this has happened in the recent past with Muslims and environmental activists.
We live in an exciting time where it can be reasonably believed that the current ruling order can be overthrown and an entirely new world can flourish in it’s place. Entire governments have been brought down, insurrections nurtured and pushed to their most subversive ends, and people across the globe anticipate a coming, perhaps winnable, clash between themselves and power. However, it is also a scary time to call yourself an anarchist, with the media and whole governments inflating fears of anarchist “terrorism”, bomb-plots, and attacks. In recent months, 10 people have been brought up on conspiracy charges. Each of these cases is similar; an FBI informant finds young idealistic people involved on the periphery of protest movements and pushes them toward radical action, only to later arrest them after they have been pushed. In this special article from a comrade in the bay area, they discuss how strategies classically used against revolutionaries have come to be more broadly applied to other groups of people, as though they too are seen by the state as combatants and potential insurgents.
In Modesto, we’ve already seen police target anarchists for repression, as was the case when the Stanislaus County Sheriffs launched a sting operation against an underground needle exchange in order to “rid the parks of anarchists and junkies,” as head Sheriff Adam Christianson explained before the Board of Supervisors. In 2006, an Auburn anarchist, Eric McDavid, was sentenced to 20 years in prison after being entrapped by an FBI informant without even carrying out an action. While we have seen the state act against anarchists in this area, we also have seen the targeting of whole groups of people based on the neighborhood they live in or their immigration status. When the needle exchange was shut down, people reacted with solidarity: dropping banners, holding demonstrations, packing the courtroom, and throwing benefits to raise money, but what was our response when immigration officials raided a Modesto area flea market, carting away children under the pretext of looking for pirate DVDs? Where was the rage when the city of Modesto declared entire neighborhoods under gang injunctions, which in colonial fashion created curfews, forbade people from associating with each other, and hindered the movements of entire groups of people?
We should not be surprised at state repression against radicals when such strategies are used by the government against huge segments of the population. Generalized surveillance, mass incarceration, the ubiquitous exploitation of migrant workers terrorized to silence through the constant threat of deportation, and gang injunctions which keep poor communities of color fractured and isolated are all part of a social war waged against the very population itself. With these first forays into the domestication of warfare into every day fabric of our lives, is it any wonder that the state would target those who already proclaim themselves combatants in just such a war?
In simple words: While domestic policies remain a forum where disagreement is diverse and intense, the platform for foreign policies is where agreement is reached. Which also means candidates claiming to change the foreign policy won’t deliver much - similar to the case of Obama. Drones, bombing, covert ops, assassinations will continue to “protect US freedom.”
Frederic Bastiat (via laliberty)