Span The World With Friendship

I’ve just received a mailout asking me to promote a benefit CD, something I’m more than happy to do. It has been released to raise vital funds for a young man in Russia who was the victim of a brutal racist attack. Alem Assefa suffered serious brain injury after being beaten by boneheads for being black.

The good news is he is making a slow recovery. But the nature of his injuries mean that he is in need of expensive medical treatment, to ensure that he has the best chance of making as full a recovery as possible. Alem and his family are not rich by any means. But they have friends, good friends, who don’t stand idly by when their mates are in need.

To this end, they have released the ‘Planet Of Friends‘ compilation CD. Featuring 43 songs by 27 bands, this is a work of global unity and solidarity and a big ‘FUCK YOU’ to fascist scum. The CD is only $11 post paid in the US ($13 world). I’ve ordered my copy today. Please take a moment and try and do the same. Even if you can’t afford $13, you can throw a couple of quid in the virtual bucket.

There’s No Justice, There’s Just Us

I’ve received the following via a friend from the A.N.S.W.E.R. coalition. If you can take any action whatsoever to support their aims, please do.

Dear Friend and Supporter of Justice,

Last week, the Bush Administration—which pretends to be fighting a “war on terrorism”—allowed the release from prison of the leading self-confessed terrorist in the Americas, Luis Posada Carriles. The release of Posada, wanted in Venezuela for organizing the bombing of a plane in 1976, which killed all 73 persons on board, has created a wave of outrage in Latin America and around the world. Quoting Bush’s hypocritical words back to him on April 19, the day of Posada’s release, a Cuban youth leader said, “If you harbor a terrorist, you are a terrorist.”

On May 11, 2007, Posada is scheduled to return to El Paso, Texas for a trial on minor immigration charges. The Bush “Justice” Department, headed by Alberto Gonzales, has refused to bring charges of terrorist activity—including murder—against Posada despite the existence of mountains of evidence against him. Bush and Gonzales have refused to extradite Posada to Venezuela, despite a legally binding extradition treaty that country has had with the United States for more than 80 years.

We, too, will be in El Paso on May 11. Together with people from across the Southwest and beyond, we will be there to demand justice for Posada’s victims and his extradition to Venezuela to stand trial for his horrific crimes. We are asking for your support in organizing a demonstration and press conference outside the courthouse in El Paso and in other cities across the country on that day. We must raise thousands of dollars to organize transportation to the El Paso demonstration, including for the families of victims of Posada’s murderous acts over the years. Their suffering has not ended and their voices must be heard.

The bombing of the Cubana Airlines plane on its way from Caracas to Havana, was far from Posada’s only terrorist act. In a 1998 New York Times interview, Posada admitted organizing and paying for a series of bombings of tourist hotels in Havana. One person, an Italian tourist named Livio Di Celmo, was killed and dozens wounded. In November 2000, Posada organized an assassination attempt against Cuban President Fidel Castro when he was visiting the University of Panama. The plan, which was thwarted by Cuban security services, called for blowing up—using 33 pounds of C-4 plastic explosives—a packed auditorium filled with 2,000 students while Castro was speaking. The death toll would have likely been in the hundreds. After a short prison term, Posada and his cohorts were pardoned by U.S.-dependent Panamanian president, Mireya Moscoso, on her last day in office.

At the same time Posada walks free, the Cuban Five—five men whose mission was to stop terrorist attacks emanating from Miami against their homeland—remain locked away, three of them serving life sentences in U.S. prisons. Nothing could highlight more clearly the injustice suffered by these five men than the release of the arch-terrorist Posada. The freeing of Posada is a declaration by the Bush administration of its intent to continue the 48-year undeclared war against the small neighboring country of Cuba.

We are appealing to you to join and support the campaign for justice on May 11 and beyond. Please click here to make a much needed donation today.

Yours for Justice,

Ramsey Clark, Gloria La Riva, Cynthia McKinney

To see the most recent list of May 11 protests, click on this link:

A.N.S.W.E.R. Coalition

Email the A.N.S.W.E.R. Coalition
National Office in Washington DC: 202-544-3389
New York City: 212-694-8720
Los Angeles: 323-464-1636
San Francisco: 415-821-6545
Chicago: 773-463-0311
Seattle: 206-568-1661

If The Kids Are United

Happy International Workers Day. In 1887, five anarchists were murdered by the American state for nothing more than helping workers to organise. Today marks the day when we celebrate their struggle. Their deaths will never be forgotten and remind us why we must never forgive. In the words of August Spies, one of the martyrs:

The time will come when our silence will be more powerful than the voices you strangle today.

So relax, fiddle your time sheet, skive, slack, phone in sick, throw a spanner in the works, stand together and reclaim your life. It’s YOUR day, do what you can to remind yourself that, if we keep fighting, keep struggling, keep loving and raging, life could be like this every day.

Arise, ye workers from your slumber,
Arise, ye prisoners of want.
For reason in revolt now thunders,
and at last ends the age of cant!
Away with all your superstitions,
Servile masses, arise, arise!
We’ll change henceforth the old tradition,
And spurn the dust to win the prize!
So comrades, come rally,
And the last fight let us face.
The Internationale,
Unites the human race.
So comrades, come rally,
And the last fight let us face.
The Internationale,
Unites the human race.

No more deluded by reaction,
On tyrants only we’ll make war!
The soldiers too will take strike action,
They’ll break ranks and fight no more!
And if those cannibals keep trying,
To sacrifice us to their pride,
They soon shall hear the bullets flying,
We’ll shoot the generals on our own side.
So comrades, come rally,
And the last fight let us face.
The Internationale,
Unites the human race.
So comrades, come rally,
And the last fight let us face.
The Internationale,
Unites the human race.

No saviour from on high delivers,
No faith have we in prince or peer.
Our own right hand the chains must shiver,
Chains of hatred, greed and fear.
E’er the thieves will out with their booty,
And to all give a happier lot.
Each at his forge must do their duty,
And we’ll strike the iron while it’s hot.
So comrades, come rally,
And the last fight let us face.
The Internationale,
Unites the human race.
So comrades, come rally,
And the last fight let us face.
The Internationale,
Unites the human race.

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