If there is something which should be at the core of anarchist politics and organising, its internationalism. We’re opposed to global capitalism and narrow chauvinism and this goes all the way back to the founding of the Anarchist International at St. Imier and further. Following the global pangs brought about by the ruling classes neo-liberal offensive with the banking crisis, we have seen new collectives and battlefronts formed in struggle not only in the Middle East, but further afield in South America. Which hold important prospects for the struggle for free communism.
Areas either new to anarchism, or where libertarian ideas have possibly thawed for one factor or another have come to fruition. When the Anarchist Federation heard that a collective had formed in Central American and the Caribbean (FACC) we jumped at the opportunity to build up relations and form contact with them. Especially since our international – the IAF is branching out into new territories beyond the narrow confines of Europe.
Cuba, which is something of an epicentre for this new group, holds a number of prestigious positions in particular; it is a place where anarchism has had a illustrious history; it is nominally still an ‘existing socialist society’ and contains all the contradictions and difficulties one can imagine in terms of organising there and disorientating leftists, furthermore it is going to be subject to rapid change with the opening up of markets to America, under the auspices of thawing US-Cuba relations for tourism.
What is interesting to note is that the comrades not only understand the transition, but have managed to traverse the historical contradictions imposed by their “socialist” society to develop very sharp political insights in otherwise unenviable circumstances as well develop their own regional support network.
In terms of the logistics, the AF organised for a five point national tour pretty much the length and breadth of the UK (with an additional date added later due to popularity) with the tour beginning with the London Anarchist Bookfair. Many of the dates we are glad to convey were packed out with interesting questions and discussions being had. The London bookfair meeting in particular proved so popular people were being turned away because of the room’s capacity!
In terms of the opportunity it offered to the comrades from the FACC, it was an immense opportunity. The FACC in general, operating in a very political restrictive environment, and are very dependent on international solidarity. While at the same time one of the key focuses of the Cuban contingent has been to try and secure a base of operations in a popular neighbourhood in Havana – which we are wishful and supportive of. Please visit and support here.
Sometimes our International does tremendous work secretly squirreling away supporting various initiatives with resources and solidarity, this was a nice opportunity to showcase something of that work’s fruition. Although the venture was nominally challenging in terms of resources for our modest organisation, the tour allowed the FACC comrade to build-up extensive and wider contacts, as well as bring internationalism to the fore by documenting their comrades’ insightful and inspiring experience of organising in their region whether it was LGBT work, responding to regressive labour reforms, discussing the legacy of racism, supporting their comrades’ response to jingoism/chauvism or organising a libertarian themed library and book-fair.
A video and recordings of the tour are available here.
Our heartfelt thanks should be expressed for all individuals and collectives that made this venture possible.
This is an extended translation from Spanish on the founding of the FACC (Federación Anarquista de Centroamérica y el Caribe;Central American and Caribbean Anarchist Federation)
-Communication committee FACC-
The F.A.C.C. is born!
After several months of preparation, pre-congress debates, and after the call for a first conference for the formation of the Anarchist Federation of Central America and Caribbean (FACC), comrades from different countries and situations in the Central and Caribbean regions (with international observers) met in the city of Santiago de los Caballeros (Dominican Republic) on 21 and 22 March this year, to test ideas, to meet and to establish differences and similarities.
We express our satisfaction for the founding of FACC, which is a channel for solidarity and cooperation of anarchists in the area, transcending the border constraints that capitalism and states impose on us, a federation of trends that seeks to fan the relationships between the various groups in the region and its diaspora.
Founding members of the Federation are: Taller Libertario Alfredo López (Tlal) of Cuba, Kiskeya Libertaria of Dominican, Comrades of Puerto Rico, El Salvador, Bonaire and Miami (There are other groups that wanted to participate in the FACC congress and even to be members, but for different situations could not yet become a part of the Federation).
The federation is based on the principles of consensus, solidarity and acceptance of diversity of individuals and groups in their trends and practices, focusing on review of activity and study within the two regions, and is characterized as a federation with a horizontal organization.
According to decisions by consensus, it was agreed that the membership criteria are:
– Individuals and/or collectives that call themselves anarchist.
– Individuals or groups acting horizontally.
– One of the active member federations vouches for individuals or collective applicants.
– Unanimous consensus is required for entry of individuals or groups to the federation.
– New entrants into the federation wait a maximum of two months time to achieve unanimity in consensus.
The Federation has already formed one committee; Communications Committee, and three committees have been created by voluntary individuals who; “Anti-repressive” committee, “Anti-nationalist” committee and “Self-organising” committee.
The formation of the Federation marks a milestone in the history of the anarchist movements in the regions, since never before has a space existed to share experiences and work together critically.
We have chosen the path of freedom and horizontality and ask that our allied comrades elsewhere join us in this new journey towards this ancient ideal, one that is constantly renewed, to result in anarchy!
Committee of communications F.A.C.C.-
This is a translation into English from the original document in Spanish. The translation has been made for mates of the Anarchist Federation (Afed) regarding the birth of the FACC (Federación Anarquista de Centroamérica y el Caribe;Central American and Caribbean Anarchist Federation). The translator declares no conflict of interests.Translated by Diogenes Libertario who declares solidarity and support with the FACC. ¡Viva la FACC!