Monday, 23 October 2017

A Day In A Greek Court.

         Greece with its supposedly "left-wing" socialist government, displays all the usual signs of fascism. Its institutions lined by riot police, armed to the teeth with batons and body armour, special protective treatment for fascist groups and fascist individuals. However, the people of Greece don't let this pass unchallenged, physical and relentless solidarity against the fascists in the country is the norm. From the streets to the courts, the anti-fascists turn up in numbers to confront and defeat this vile poison that is seeping through the fabric of their country. This fascist poison is also tainting the lives of millions throughout Europe and America, perhaps we could take a few leafs out of the Greek anti-fascists' book.

        Update from the trial of the antifascist centre Distomo in Athens – Greece
           The hearing started with the clashes between antifascists and the Y.M.E.T squad which had the task of private security for the parastate gunman Perrakis inside the court, during his testimony. During his testimony the squad had raised its shield against the defendants and their supporters who showed up in solidarity, creating a protective wall in front of him.
          During his exit he was again escorted while the people threw coffee and spat on him. During the effort of the police to guard Perrakis a riotcop pushed down a comrade and an elderly person who fell down from 1,5 metre height causing him head injuries and a broken arm. In the meantime we managed to achieve that the trial would continue without the presence of Y.M.E.T. and the riot police, the second round of testimonies began.

         That’s when Panayotis Rakovitis and Demetris Tzavellas were humiliated by the antifascists. They were so afraid they kept contradicting themselves. After their testimonies they tried, unsuccessfully, to leave unscathed through the crowd.
Then spoke the owner of the building where the office of the Golden Dawn is housed, who, pressurized by the climate in the court room and the defeats the party has had through the years, said openly that he wishes for the closure of the office. As AntifascistCentre Distomo we openly defended the choice not to leave any space for fascists and the possibility every antifascist has, to be outside the Golden Dawn office at any time.
          We carried this understanding in action inside the courtroom by reversing the role of defendants into accusers.
         Antifascist unity is the only way toward a toward a militant and physical attack against fascism.

 via: Athens Indymedia
Translated by Radio Fragmata.
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From The Streets Of Catalonia.

          The stories are many and varied on what went on in Catalonia when the state's bully-boys, the police, started their crack-down on the voting in the Catalonia referendum. To get a full span of the police violence, here are a collection of videos from the streets of Catalonia. Again, I'm not putting my voice behind the nationalism in this case, but highlighting how the state behaves when its people do something it doesn't like. Thanks Loam for the link.
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Sunday, 22 October 2017

The Puppeteer And The Populace.

         When political scenes bubble up to large protests and uprisings, it is difficult to grasp the truth of the situation, mainly due to the propaganda and vested interested vomit, the flows from our babbling brook of bullshit, the mainstream media. Of course this is what is happening in Spain at the moment, protests must be smothered or at least controlled, and must never become a threat to the existing power of the established power elite. This is in no way me throwing my voice behind the nationalist ideology, which is just the restructuring of a new state, a shifting of an imaginary border and a re-adjustment between the power elites. Nationalism can never be the road to the desired emancipation of all people.
      So to understand why the Spanish state is now openly displaying its true fascists colours, by dissolving a functioning parliament and forcing direct rule, you have to follow different threads. 
       This thread from Tarcoteca is very informative. I particularly like the metaphor of the puppeteer and his two puppets. This could equally apply to any developed world state. Democrat and Republican, Labour and Tory, etc. keeping the populace all baying for their particular puppet, but leaving the puppeteer to dictate the story line.

          And here is where we find the great metaphor of what the Regime’s reality is. Its authentic nature.
             Before us, the look of the left wing and the right side politically confronted, reflected in two masses TV channels apparently ideologically opposed which belong to the same Elites of the Regime.
         The best way to visualise it is imagining a puppeteer entertaining us with fights and confrontations between two puppets, one in each hand. And underneath the puppet theatre, a group of children shouting (us the population) submitted and stupefied masses standing up for one or another puppet, the ‘blue’ or the ‘red’.
The puppeteer doesn’t mind the children shrieks, neither which of the puppets have to win at ‘today’s function.’ The puppets and the puppet theatre are his belongings and this is the only thing that matters.
        In fact, seen that the children have begun to get bored of the ‘blue’ and the ‘red’ puppets, the puppeteer created two new puppets: the ‘orange’ and the ‘purple’. Within the Spanish reality, those two new puppets are the new political phenomena parties: Ciudadanos and Podemos whose their only task is to keep the function going and continue entertaining the stupefied masses.
        Either Ciudadanos and Podemos were launched at TV channels and media property of the Regime Elites. Do not doubt about both puppets being created to perform a specific role-play.
        Basically, Ciudadanos is in charge of accelerating the repressive timings of the Regime as well as helping to reinforce and support it. While Podemos focused on gathering all the unhappy ‘revolutionaries,’ to make them waste time on an endless blah, blah, blah. Preventing them from tearing down the Regime under the promise if people vote them (during the next polls in few years’ time) when they reach power (so never) they will change everything.
        Therefore, it doesn’t matter which puppet children stand for the red, blue, orange or purple. They all speak through the puppeteer’s mouth and comply with the mandate’s roleplay…
      Here is where the Popular Rebellion we are living in Catalonia comes into context. The independence process changes everything because it doesn’t circumscribe at the fake democratic conflict but it directly attacks the Regime’s existence.
      We will see it clearly if we continue with the puppeteer and the puppet theatre metaphor. It turns out that suddenly, in the middle of the play of this puppet theatre, a rebel child has stood up and said: ‘I am fed up with this puppet show; I want to leave and play with a ball.’
      Damn child!
He is not supporting any puppet… he wants to leave! This is what Catalans did when they said that they liked to vote to decide their future. They have warned that they are keen to stand up and leave the function because they are fed up with the pantomime and the bloody puppets. They are fed up with the Regime.
           What has the answer of the puppeteer been?
         So, we have all seen it: facing the child’s protest both puppets, the red and the blue, gave up the ridiculous role of fighting between them and have started to insult the child, to ridicule him in front of other children trying to get his colleagues to oblige him to sit back and continue watching the play.
          Above everything else the most important is to prevent this rebel and insolent child from standing up and going to play with the ball; as others could go with him and the puppet show would finish. The control among children would be over, therefore, the business too. The Regime would come to grief and it would blow away all the bloodsuckers that live in it.
         In fact, this puppeteer sees his business at risk and has converted his puppets in fists and angered left the puppet theatre going after the impertinent child forcing and obliging him to stay.
        This is EXACTLY what is happening in Spain at the moment. And that is EXACTLY what the media at the Regime service did. All of the sudden, they have stopped being ‘left wing’ or ‘right wing’ and they have started to work in unison saying the same things about what is occurring in Catalonia, spreading the same insults, manipulations and lies.------
Read the full article HERE: 
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Saturday, 21 October 2017

Nationalism, Divider Of People, Cementer Of Submission.

       Why is is it that there are people how still think nationalism is a way of bring people together across the globe? Or is it that they don't give a shit about other people, but somehow believe that their own national parasites will take better care of them than parasites from further afield? This illusion that nationalism is somehow a flag worth waving, has been responsible for countless years of bloodshed, savagery, and the needless killing of our brothers and sisters, who happen to be born on a different spot on the planet. All for the protection of the wealthy and powerful, who hold the reins that control the various repressive societies, we at present, live under. Those with this divisive "National Pride" delusion, should accept that it is only by pure chance that they were born in a particular patch of soil on this rather small planet, and it is only by co-operation, solidarity and mutual aid, in a border free world, that we can hope to improve the lives of all our people.

No, I shall not die for the fluttering flag,
if truth be known, ’tis nothing but a multi-coloured rag
held aloft by some foolish hand
inciting worker and peasant to kill
on some green and wooded hill,
peasant and worker from some other land.
Nor shall I shed blood for the fluttering rag
that brings out fools to stand and brag
of brutal deeds painted grand,
deeds where rustic and craftsman lie so still
killed by my brothers' misguided hand.
No allegiance have I for the Nation
this man made autocratic creation
that divides my brothers in a world so small,
binds us to a country's cause, right or wrong,
bids us follow its drum, sing its song,
then sheds our blood in some border brawl.
No, I'll be no slave to flag or nation,
have no ear for power oration,
though its iron heel is on my breast,
my back feels its leather thong,
at patriotism's barracoon, I'll be no guest.

           Note from Insurrection News: The following text is a translation of a leaflet that is being distributed by the comrades at Contra Madriz along with a series of posters, pamphlets and stickers that denounce all expressions of nationalism. The material will be distributed throughout the territories currently ruled by the Spanish State. You can read the original text in Spanish and download PDFs of the material HERE.
      No State, Spanish or Catalan, will give us any kind of freedom. Because the reason of being for every State is to subject the exploited and to guarantee the privileges of the ruling classes. The state regulates exploitation via the law and is responsible for ensuring that the oppressed never rise up against an order that exploits, humiliates, evicts, steals, murders and creates misery throughout the length and breadth of the planet.
      No police, Mossos (Catalan police), Civil or National Guard protects us. They are the shock force of the state that protects private property and are responsible for repressing and persecuting those who do not kneel and decide to fight against their rotten world. There are no good police or bad police, all repressive bodies obey a very specific logic: maintain order. Let’s not forget the actions of all police forces in general strikes, demonstrations, neighborhood raids, racist controls, surveillance of prisons, evictions and even as a force of foreign occupation (remember the number of police officers deployed for international missions). They obey and serve their masters.
       Democracy, parliamentary institutions and politicians do not look after our interests, but their own interests. No one but ourselves should look after our interests. Electing our masters, voting, submitting to majorities and / or minorities, acting within democratic frameworks…makes us complicit in our own domination and establishes in us the spirit of delegation in officials. We put our lives in their hands. Relying on politicians who only seek (as they all do) to profit from our struggles and our feelings, while submitting us or aspiring to submit us, makes us become a servile mass ready to mobilize or demobilize according to their electoral interests and their struggles for power.
       No nationalism or flag should represent us. As the oppressed and exploited we should understand that we have more in common with the other oppressed and exploited than with an entrepreneur or politician who was born in the same place as us. Nationalism and patriotism are tools of power which infect and manipulate the oppressed and make them dance to the tune of the oppressors and bond with our class enemies and their constantly changing projects and needs. The affection for the land in which we live or our language are taken away to justify the creation of new states. Obviously, culture should be something living, in constant evolution and free development between individuals and communities. The state is the death of all free development, building borders and sowing the seeds of racism and xenophobia.
        Under capitalism, the state and any form of authority, we will never be free. Let us build a new world on the ruins of authoritarian and state society. Let us build and fight for anarchy, as a constant struggle against all forms of oppression and exploitation, in solidarity and mutual support with our equals, no matter where they come from.
(via Contra Madriz, translated by PDF)
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Tuesday, 10 October 2017

A Moderniser!!

           Sitting in a bookshop café, the other day having a chat with a couple of anarchists comrades, the conversation rambled from football to travel on trains and buses, the horror of airports, and a host of other equally important subjects. Then the matter of Jeremy Corbyn came up, to which I said he was the new Messiah that would lead the people to the promised land, only to find they were back where they started in the desert. Then other UK Messiahs came up, Neil Kinnock and Tony Blair, and the difference between them, though I think the difference is illusionary, to my surprise one of my comrades referred to Tony Blair as a “moderniser”. The reason for my surprise is that I consider this as 100% mainstream media propaganda language. Tony Blair was one of a bunch of careerist who decided, for their own ends , to move the Labour Party even more to the right, and to blatantly admit that they would do business with large corporations and the financial Mafia, this is modernising if you are a rabid neo-con, where the previous Labour Party hid behind the illusion that it opposed such institutions, only when in power to sit down and do business with them to “grow the economy”, which is a euphemism for improving the profitability of big business and the financial Mafia. If and when Our Saviour Jeremy Corbyn, comes to power, there may be a few slices of bread thrown our way, in the shape of improvements to social services and help for the NHS. These will not even make up for the ravages of the last decade of “austerity” and “balancing the books” ideology of the present political ballerinas. I know both my comrades agree, as long as we hold to the party political system, we will live in a system where big business and the financial Mafia will continue their efforts to turn every human action and activity into a profit making endeavour. The Messiahs will come and the Messiahs will go but exploitation will continue. 
        However, I think my comrade should find another label for Holy Tony, perhaps something along the lines of arrogant, right wing, careerist, lost in an illusion of grandeur and his dream of the Phony Tony legacy, a hollow shell of a self-centred fantasising dangerous dreamer. A moderniser, never.
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Monday, 9 October 2017

The West, The Bringer Of Peace!!!

          These little extracts explain how the "free democratic West" with its "peace loving" leaders plan the future. Wars are part of its strategy for world domination, simply to control the world's resources, all for profit and greed.
        In his book, A Time To Lead, General Clark states: (Wikipedia)
 ------a conversation Clark had with Paul Wolfowitz in May 1991 after the Gulf War, quoting Wolfowitz as lamenting the non-removal of Saddam Hussein, but also telling him that "...we did learn one thing that’s very important. With the end of the Cold War, we can now use our military with impunity. The Soviets won’t come in to block us. And we’ve got five, maybe 10, years to clean up these old Soviet surrogate regimes like Iraq and Syria before the next superpower emerges to challenge us...".[133]
        Retired four-star General Wesley Clark has given a number of interviews over the years in which he has revealed a covert plan whereby the “US will attack 7 countries In 5 years”. The context was always the Middle East and the seven countries were “Iraq, and then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and, finishing off, Iran.” In each case Clark appears to be unaware that he was unwittingly exposing the essence of a clandestine scheme known in some circles as the Greater Israel project.
         Gen. Clark has performed a great service to the nation, and the world, by disclosing this crucial insider info. His public sharing of this critical piece of the Mideast puzzle has probably had an adverse effect on his post military career. Unfortunately, Clark’s forced retirement by the U.S. Army has likely made it much more difficult to acquire similar types of extremely valuable intelligence.
What follows is General Clark’s stunning revelation word for word:
          So I came back to see him a few weeks later, and by that time we were bombing in Afghanistan. I said, “Are we still going to war with Iraq?” And he said, “Oh, it’s worse than that.” He reached over on his desk. He picked up a piece of paper. And he said, “I just got this down from upstairs” — meaning the Secretary of Defense’s office — “today.” And he said, “This is a memo that describes how we’re going to take out seven countries in five years, starting with Iraq, and then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and, finishing off, Iran.” I said, “Is it classified?” He said, “Yes, sir.” I said, “Well, don’t show it to me.” And I saw him a year or so ago, and I said, “You remember that?” He said, “Sir, I didn’t show you that memo! I didn’t show it to you!”[1]
— General Wesley Clark

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Thursday, 5 October 2017

Glasgow Stands With Catalunya Against Police Brutality.

     A couple of days late with this post, but still worth displaying. Glasgow shows its solidarity with the people of Catalonia who sufferer some of the worst police brutality seen in Europe for a considerable time.
       Solidarity banner drop today in Glasgow, in support of the October 3rd General Strike called by the CGT, CNT and many other anarcho-syndicalist unions in Catalonia protesting police violence and repression. The text reads: "GLASGOW STANDS WITH CATALUNYA AGAINST POLICE VIOLENCE. SUPPORT THE OCTOBER 3RD GENERAL STRIKE." ¡Vamos!

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Tuesday, 3 October 2017

Choose Only From The List.

        A vision of how representative democracy works in modern civilised Europe, where people are free to choose. As long as you choose from the offered box of sweeties. Don't try to choose from anything outside the state's offered box. To draw up a choice list of your own is considered a crime, and your chosen list will be brutally erased. To expect anything different is to be blind to history, the story is all there, written in the blood of ordinary people who have decided they want a different choice. The state is an antithesis of freedom, you choose one or the other, you can't have both. 
This video was lifted from arrezafe. 

A wonderful response from the people to the state's brutality.

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Monday, 2 October 2017

It Is How The Beast Behaves.

      Why the anger at the Spanish state? It is behaving just as states usually behave, name a state that doesn't have its gangs of black clad bully-boys with their padded shin guards, elbow pads, protective helmets and long batons, backed up by another gang who have rubber bullets and live ammunition? Name a state that hasn't used these thugs against its own unarmed citizens? The Spanish state is just showing its true colours, after all the sanctity of the state was being attacked by young and elderly, armed with pencils and paper.
      How often have we seen from a multiplicity of media outlets and personal experience, this sort of state behaviour across the globe, but somehow there is always shock and horror when it happens. We should expect it, that's what the state's armed thugs are there for, to make sure that the people know their place, the citizens must behave as subservient sheep. Start to act collectively to shape your society and you will always feel the wrath of the state.
        Instead of criticising the Spanish state we should be looking at how to free our minds from the concept of a state, how to organise our society by means of the people taking control and shaping their communities, and society in general, to meet their needs and desires. As long as we participate in the charade of representative democracy, with its political parties, abdicating our own power to a handful of over paid political ballerinas, with their vested interests, we will see these scenes recur time and time again. Every time the people say the have had enough, the state will come down with the full compliment of its brute force apparatus. That's what it is there for, to keep you accepting your servitude.

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Saturday, 30 September 2017

Red and Black Song Club.

        To all those singers, warblers, chanters, open mike enthusiasts, karaoke characters, and those who just like to sing in the bath. Here is an opportunity to let you dulcet tones rip forth, join a bunch of enthusiast, who love nothing better than getting together and letting their tonsils vibrate, come and sing because you love singing, not because you are a good singer. The Red and Black Song Club meet 1st. and 3rd. Wednesday of the month at Glasgow Autonomous Space, (GAS).
        You can contact The Red and Black Song Club on Facebook.
For directions to Glasgow Autonomous Space better to visit their site.
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Thursday, 28 September 2017

National Poetry Day 2017.

       Today is national poetry day, so in my humble way I attempt to celebrate and further the idea that, poetry is a magic portal through which you can see a different world. Enjoy.
Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori
rings false for a pillaging empire.
To die for war-mongers
and criminals in business suits
is sour.

The Pledge of Allegiance
is sinister and violent.
National identity empowers
the American war machine.
Proudly waving flags
conceal the unjust bloodshed.

War needs public support;
propaganda makes it possible;
repetition makes it stick.
Indoctrination into the fold
of nationalistic pride
from birth.

Do governments truly
unite their peoples...

...or divide the world
with flags and gods?

Mind control
on an unbelievable scale,
a shill production scheme.

And who votes either
"For" or "Against"

plays into


We the people have, every brick laid,
have fed the world with sweat and spade,
every instrument played in every band
created by the skill of the craftsman's hand.
We made every truck and every load,
our toil our effort every winding road,
every ship that ever sailed the sea,
our power our imagination made it be.
Cities and towns large and small,
our labouring hands fashioned them all,
every home, every spire,
luxury mansion or humble byre.
No matter what dreams the mind might spawn
without labour's hand, never see the light of dawn,
without labour's strength and labour's skill,
we would be foraging beasts in a jungle still.


In a global square, in a global village the people are gathering,
They want to sort out their village once and for all.
They have had enough of wild beasts stealing their chickens,
Of war lords pillaging and plundering their crops.
Though they labour hard, they live poor
While the wild beasts and war lords grow fat.
This time they will take the time and do it right,
This time they will finally and forever banish,
Wild beasts and war lords from their village.
This time all our chickens will feed all the children of the village
This time our crops will see all our people through the winter,
This time, all the fruits of our labour will be ours.

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Wednesday, 27 September 2017

The System With The Gloves Off.

         The establishment billionaires, chatting about their latest investments, as they sit in their marble halls of power, or sipping champagne on board their multi million pound yachts, must be feeling rather, smug at the moment, they have succeeded in sparking the fire again. The have the ordinary people fighting each other on the streets, a wonderful opportunity for the state to increase controls to keep "law and order". The rise of the right, is no mystic happening, no unforeseen accident, it always appears as the dissatisfaction rises among the people. It is a well tried and tested strategy to get the people fighting among themselves. When resistance to the system becomes too difficult, for the "legal" system to silence, intimidate and imprison, why not try to kick the shit out of them on the street. and at the same time, take the focus of the system itself, capitalism. The so called Alt-right, etc., is just the system with the gloves off.
       Sadly the Nazis on the streets are not the billionaires, they tend to be from the streets where you live, they are the street thugs of those billionaires, who wouldn't touch them with a barge pole, Hence they always get treated differently from those on the left, by the "forces of law and order" when it cones to a confrontation on the streets.
        A recent incident from Houston Anarchist Bookfair, reported by Black Rose Anarchist Federation: 

HOUSTON – With chants of “Blood and Soil” about 30 fascists affiliated with Vanguard America and the Proud Boys attempted to rush the entrance of the Houston Anarchist Book Fair underway at MECA Houston community center on Sunday, September 24. The attempt occurred at 11:50am but was quickly rebuffed as the security team present locked the doors to the facility, blocking the entrance briefly but foiling the effort of the fascist groups to enter the building to intimidate and likely attack organizers and attendees.
       The incident lasted roughly 20 minutes in total and no confrontations or injuries occurred as the the fascists gave up, circled the building in their trucks and left the scene according to members of Black Rose/Rosa Negra – San Antonio, who were present at the book fair tabling. Members of the Proud the Boys and Vanguard America were both involved in the violent “Unite the Right” march one month ago in Charlottesville, VA, where a participant linked to Vanguard America rammed their vehicle into a crowd of counter-protesters, resulting in the  death of Heather Heyer. This incident at the Houston Anarchist Book Fair occurred immediately before lunch, which suggested prior planning and knowledge of the event.
      Correction: The original headline of this article incorrectly identified the group present as the “alt-right” Proud Boys groups. Members of this group may have been present but our understanding is that this was led by members of Vanguard America.
Video clip of the incident taken by a member of Black Rose/Rosa Negra – San Antonio. At this point members of Vanguard America, identified by their white polo shirts, had given up and were circling the building to leave.
View video clip HERE:

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Tuesday, 26 September 2017

Two Bells With A Different Ring.

        Working class history is all too often lost, forgotten or deliberately hidden, but it is there, a rich history of struggle, a culture of community that stretches back as far as we wish to look. However the establishment has no desire to allow that history to take its rightful place, as the true history of the people. Much better for them, that we admire barons of industry, kings, queens and other forms of parasitical power. Our cities are festooned with statues of exploiting millionaires, military figures with the blood of ordinary people on their hands, and at the top of the tree of parasites, royals. I believe it was George Orwell that said, "The surest way to destroy a people, is to destroy their history", I paraphrase. In Glasgow we have Spirit of Revolt and Strugglepedia, two sites where we do our best to record, preserve and publicise that history, making it easily accessible to the general public, Have a wee look, perhaps you can get involved and add to that true picture of our history.
        Scotland has been fortunate in the fact it has had a long line of working class radical activists, stretching back as far as exploitation has used its venomous tentacles. Some have carried on their fight against the system in the full glare of publicity, others have battled away in seclusion and in the background, but never the less determined to change this world for the better for all. All must be remembered
      We have had, just to mention a few, Thomas Muir, Ethel MacDonald, Willie McDougal, Guy Aldred, John MacLean, Rita Milton, George (Ballard) Barrett, Tom Anderson, and in more recent times, Les Foster, Charlie and Molly BairdBobby Lynn, I could go on. We have also had the strange occurrence of two Tom Bells. One, Tom Bell, red Clydesider, who mixed with the anti-parliamentarians, until a visit to Moscow seen him come back with the strange idea that the only way to get emancipation for the people was through the ballot box, and with some others formed the British Communist Party. 
       The other Tom Bell, Thomas Hastie Bell, was a different kettle of fish. A life long vociferous anarchist, always eager to get people involved, always busy with propaganda and action. He travelled the world, learnt to speak several languages, and eventually settled in America, still pushing his ideas and anarchist philosophy, he died in America in 1942.
        Here is a short biography of that Thomas Hastie Bell, this article first appeared in Organise! magazine #66. Also published by Libcom.

        A short biography of leading Scottish anarchist Tom Bell, a marine engineer and propagandist who travelled the world, finally settling in the US.
        Thomas Hastie Bell was born in Edinburgh in 1867. He should not be confused with another Tom Bell, fellow Scot , Red Clydesider and one of the founders of the Communist Party. He acquired fluency in French, Italian, Spanish and German thanks to his job as a ship’s engineer, visiting all the Mediterranean countries, South Africa, the United States and South America.
        As a young man he joined the Scottish Land and Labour League and in the 1880s became an anarchist through his association with the Socialist League. He was active in the Freedom group in London. In 1892 he returned to Edinburgh and carried on intense anarchist propaganda with J. Blair Smith and McCabe. He established a friendship there with Patrick Geddes, the biologist and town planner and persuaded him to bring over Elisée Reclus, the anarchist and geographer, to lecture at Edinburgh University. Emma Goldman mentions Bell “of whose propagandistic zeal and daring we had heard much in America”.
        Staying in Paris he had urged French anarchists to have open-air meetings, but they were reluctant. He went to the Place de la Republique, one of the most central and busiest squares, after having distributed handbills about meeting there the following Sunday afternoon. There was a big crowd there, also plenty of policemen. He climbed up a lamp-post padlocked to a crosspiece and started speaking. The police called for a file, but he continued speaking till his voice gave out and then nonchalantly produced the key. Police then threatened him with prosecution for “insults to the Army and the law” but all Paris laughed and the authorities decided not to prosecute. After 2 weeks in jail he was expelled as “too dangerous a man to be allowed loose in France”. He married the anarchist John Turner’s sister Lizzie.
         On the visit of Tsar Nicholas II to Britain, Bell went with McCabe to Leith where he was landing. Separated and although surrounded by Highlanders, territorials and infantry, Bell and McCabe got through to the Tsar’s carriage and shouted in his face “Down with the Russian tyrant! To hell with all the empires!”. Again the authorities were not inclined to prosecute, because a Scottish jury would probably throw out any charges.
        In 1898, Bell, who suffered from asthma all his life, went back to London and got a job as the (long-suffering) secretary to the man of letters Frank Harris, famous for his friendship with Oscar Wilde and his womanising, as revealed in his Life and Loves. Harris is suspected of stealing Bell’s experiences as a cowboy near the Mexican border for his own fake cowboy memories.
         Through Harris, Bell got to know Edward Carpenter, Havelock Ellis, George Bernard Shaw and others. Bell wrote a book about Wilde in his Oscar Wilde Without Whitewash in memory of those times, unfortunately never published. After 7 years in that position, he had a disagreement with Harris over the latter’s biography, which he thought was unjust to Wilde.
         He went to New York in 1905, and in 1911 finally settled in the United States for good, becoming a farmer in Phoenix, Arizona. He spent the last 20 years of his life in Los Angeles. Both Bell’s wife Lizzie Turner and his sister Jessie Bell Westwater emigrated with him to the USA and were involved in the movement. Throughout his life he remained active in the movement, maintaining lifelong friendships with Kropotkin, Emma Goldman, Alexander Berkman and Rudolf Rocker.
        Rocker said, “I saw him again in Los Angeles, when he was an old man. He was ill. His mop of red hair and his bushy beard were now white. His giant frame (he was well over six foot) was bent. But his mind was active; he was still working and speaking for the movement”.
        In a letter to the Yiddish anarchist paper Die Fraye Arbeter Shtime in 1940, Bell declared, “We become in our old age crabby, blind, deaf, lame or asthmatic. And our movement is now completely overwhelmed in a gigantic world-wide wave of reaction. But, ah, when I look back to the glorious days and the glorious comrades of our young movement, I am stirred to the depths by affection and pride”.
Tom Bell died in 1942 at the age of 75.
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