The following piece is taken from a report sent by an American member of the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) to their public mailing list on the internet recently (IWW-NEWS@org.com). It provides a personal snapshot of part of the French anarchist movement.
The main 2 groups I encountered were the Federation Anarchist Francaise (FAF) which is the oldest and largest French anarchist group, and operates a beautiful bookstore in the Bastille district, as well as a real FM radio station (Radio Libertaire, 89.4 fm), and a popular newspaper (Le Monde Libertaire); and I also spent a lot of time with the French CNT*, which is the second largest French anarchist group (even though it's only really been around for about 5 years) .
CNT has it's offices in a beautiful black and red building on rue de Vignolles. It's opening new sections in France almost every week, currently has about 500 members in Paris, and about another 1000 across France, though membership is growing rapidly. "
*an anarchist-syndicalist organisation which hopes to become a functioning revolutionary trade union
CONVICT LABOUR is the latest strike busting weapon in the hands of American bosses. Strikers at Caterpillar plants in Illinois and Pennsylvania, who have been out since June 1994, discovered that prison labour was being used to do their jobs.
At the Pontiac, Illinois, plant the pressure of scabbing every day was too much for one strikebreaker who had been promoted from office worker to supervisor. This man walked out of the plant, took off his clothes and stood in the road completely naked. Police picked him up and took him to a mental hospital.
Meanwhile the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers is refusing to repair train tracks leading into a Caterpillar tyre factory at Peoria. "We don't cross picket lines - we honour them" said the BLE .
Source: People's Weekly World
We're commonly sold the lie that poverty and suffering are the result of there not being enough resources to go around. Yet the United States has spent $4 trillion on its nuclear weapons program over the past 50 years, according to a report "Atomic Audit: What the U.S. Nuclear Arsenal Really Cost," published by 'The U.S. Nuclear Weapons Cost Study Project'.
The $4 trillion represents between one-quarter to one-third of all 'defence' spending since World War II. It includes most, but not all, of the program's direct, indirect and overhead costs.
Spending on the nuclear weapons program has dropped but $25 billion annually is still being spent on nuclear weapons and about $250 billion overall on war preparations.
EL SALVADOR A regional American newspaper, the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, reported in June that U.S. Army commandos killed 83 leftist guerrillas in El Salvador in 1985 in a secret raid. The report confirms what had long been suspected: that U.S. military personnel were actively engaged in combat operations during El Salvador's long civil war. The newspaper said that it based its report on interviews with an ex-Ranger who took part in the raid, a former Army special operations officer and a former government official involved in the cover up. The US government has always denied that it sent troops to help the Salvadorean dictatorship in its terrorist campaign against the rebels.
While the US authorities slash welfare payments to single parents and their children, they are giving enormous handouts to their rich pals. $10 billion was spent last year on subsidies to people with mortgages in excess of $250,000, what might be called a 'mansion subsidy'. Another $200 million in subsidies went to big farmers who have incomes over $5 million a year.