Call to Action Against the Cardiff Arms Fair

Come to Cardiff on the 16th of March 2016 to take action against the DPRTE arms fair at Cardiff Motorpoint Arena.

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According to its website, DPRTE (the Defense Procurement, Research, Technology and Exportability exhibition) is the “UK’s Premier Defense Procurement Event” and is now being hosted annually at Cardiff Motorpoint Arena. They hosted the arms fair in Cardiff for the first time in October 2014, with exhibitors including BAE Systems, the world’s 3rd largest arms producer. BAE has a very special relationship with the UK government & Saudi dictatorship.

*BAE sells equipment to Saudi Arabia, which is being used in the current bombardment of Yemen.

*BAE supplied the tactica armored vehicles, used by Saudi Arabia, in 2011, to brutally crush pro-democracy protests in Bahrain.

*BAE systems supplies Israel with the tools to wage war on the Palestinians, and provides display units used to equip Israeli F-16 fighter jets.

*BAE is one of many companies at DPTRE which supplies weapons to Turkey. In 2015, people in towns across Turkey’s Kurdish region have barricaded their city centers and declared autonomy from the state. The Turkish army has responded by attacking residential areas with tanks, combat helicopters and mortars, killing hundreds of people.

BAE are just one of over 80 exhibitors set to participate in the arms fair. Some are giants of the international arms industry that might be expected; others have a more local dimension, including the Welsh Assembly’s National Procurement Service and the University of South Wales. Household business names like BT and Panasonic are also all over the programme. It seems that a lot of people stand to make a lot of blood money out of the various weapons and other technological approaches to waging warfare that will be displayed.

There has been active opposition to DPRTE since 2013. The arms fair had originally been hosted at the UWE campus in Bristol, but was driven out by determined resistance; hence the move to Cardiff. The protests involved a variety of actions, including blockading the UWE north entrance, causing queues trailing back along the A4174.

Having relocated to Cardiff in 2014, South Wales Anarchists, Stop NATO Cymru and other groups and individuals resolved to show the arms dealers that there is no welcome for them in Wales either. Food Not Bombs Cardiff had a presence; people confronted the arms dealers and tried to get inside; and three arms dealers were covered in red paint as they tried to enter. Those arrested for this action had their charges dropped when it came to trial, due to insufficient evidence.

We urge all that can to join the growing resistance in Cardiff, and in particular, to take action against this arms fair and all those taking part in it on wednesday 16th March 2016. We know that when the richmake war, it’s the poor that die, and we won’t stand for business people profiting from racist mass murder, displacement and torture.

Our website will be updated with news and information and you can contact us by email on: stopcardiffarmsfair at riseup dot net

Stop the Cardiff Arms Fair / Na i Ffair Arfau Caerdydd suppourted by the Anarchist Action Network, Smash EDO, Campaign Against the Arms Trade and South Wales Anarchists

Solidarity with Yusef

Yusef Asad was unjustly sentenced to two and a half years in Prison for defending himself from racists attacking a Palestine March in Cardiff in July 2014. He received the heaviest sentence despite only responding as racists at a pub started the violence throwing bottles, glasses and chairs at the demonstrators, who included young families.

Yusef welcomes letters of support.

Yusef Asad

A4424DD

HUNTERCOMBE PRISON

NUFFIELD

HENLEY-ON-THAMES

OXFORDSHIRE

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Tear Down the Walls Workshop in Cardiff / Gweithdy Chwalwch y Cawelli

Facebook event.

This is a chance to learn about struggles against prisons across England, Wales & Scotland from The Empty Cages Collective http://www.prisonabolition.org and Community Action on Prison Expansion http://www.cape-campaign.org

The two hour workshop explores the role of prison in our lives, how the Prison Industrial Complex harms individuals and communities and alternatives to it. We introduce examples of state violence, like the IPP sentences, and we focus on prison expansion, as well as the role of prison labour.

We explore recent resistance & ongoing struggles and aim to support new groups to emerge that can fight this racist, sexist, brutal system.


Dyma siawns i ddysgu am y brwydrau yn erbyn carchardai ar draws Lloegr, Cymru a’r Alban gan yr  Empty Cages Collective http://www.prisonabolition.org ac Community Action on Prison Expansion http://www.cape-campaign.org.

Mae’r gweithdy dwyawr yma yn ymchwilio i rol carchar yn ein bywydau, sut mae’r Cyd-Berthynnas Diwydiant Carchar yn niweidio unigolion a be sy’n amgen iddo. Rydym yn cyflwyno esiamplau o drais gan y wladwriaeth, fel deddfrydau IPP, a rydym yn ffocysgu ar ehangu carchar, yn ogystal a rol llafur carchar.

Ystyriwn y mudiad yn erbyn carchardai achefnogaeth i grwpiau newydd sydd yn cwffio y system hiliol, rhywiaethol, ciaidd yma.

Tour-2016-Cardiff

Letter from Em Sheppard 26 December 2015

Please note it is important that this is not reposted after 30 December 2015 as this will be in breach of licencing conditions.

In October my probation officer said I could go back to Bristol. Now it transpires I have been a MAPPA (multi-Agency Protection) for my whole sentence, though no one thought to tell me (I always thought it was strange I wasn’t). The police met in November about me and to draw up my licence conditions, but (as is common practice) have only told me now. The licence is so restrictive that ironically I will have had more freedom in jail in some ways. I’m not sure what’s worse – to refuse to leave prison, or to accept their restrictions! It clearly shows what a farce the much quoted claims of “rehabilitation” and “maintaining family ties” are. I had a place to live and several jobs organised, but instead they make me sign-on and live in a bail hostel in Reading.

Licence conditions are one of many possible examples of how the prison society extends beyond these walls. As Ruth Wilson Gilmore said “Prison is not some building ‘over there’ but a set of relationships that undermine rather than stabilise everyday lives, everywhere”.

Apart from the usual “big 6” licence conditions, I also have: a 7-7 curfew for my entire licence (plus signing several times during the day and ‘group work’ and sessions with probation to address my “attitude”), not using any computers or internet capable devices (and specifically not deleting any browser histories), not going within 100 metres of any police buildings (probation said if I want to report a crime I can but I have to ask permission from them first…?!!?!), not to have more than one mobile phone (possibly not even one at all they are checking on this) and to provide the SIM/IME number, to permanently reside at Elizabeth Fry, not to visit or interact with any prisoners, not to contribute to or publish anything, or attend any meeting/gatherings associated with direct action/activism/campaigning, not to contact directly or indirectly any person whom I know or believe to be involved with “extremist” activities ( I have asked for the legal definition of this), or have been charged with or convicted of an offence. I am also not allowed to work with “vulnerable adults” or “groom” (or have discussions with) anyone for the purposes of radicalisation or extremism.

Once I’m out I’m going to challenge these conditions but my solicitor said it’s hard to do from inside prison. Accepting them goes against everything I believe in but I am going to do so for my family. They are obviously setting me up to fail (most girls at Elizabeth Fry do because drugs are rife there) so we’ll see how long I last. Once I sign the conditions, unless I get recalled, I won’t be able to write again until 2017 :(

They can try to stifle and control me with their restrictions, false sympathies and fake smiles, but “no pueden encarcelar neustras ideas”. My silence is only temporary, and my rage is infinite.

“Did you want to see me broken?

Bowed head and lowered eyes?

Shoulders falling down like teardrops,

Weakened by my soulful cries?

Just like the moons and like the suns,

With the certainty of tides,

Just like hopes springing high,

Still I’ll rise”

  • Still I’ll rise, Maya Angelou

Thanks for all the support this year. Hope you have a fun and mischievous 2016.

Solidarity, love and lots of rage

Em x :)

Please note it is important that this is not reposted after 30 December 2015 as this will be in breach of licencing conditions.

Fascists fail to show at their own event

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Solidarity with all facing racist violence! Solidarity with the anti-fascits actually fighting ISIS in Rojava!

After a couple of weeks of typing small and threatening words online* – no doubt buoyed up by media coverage of the supposed “islamic extremist threat” to the UK – a South Wales-based fascist group calling itself ‘War Against ISIS’ completely failed to turn up at its inaugural event: ‘we will not let our country be taken over by isis’. They called it at a location where they possibly perceived there to be a well known ISIS presence, given the apocalyptic nature of their ‘worldview’*: Cardiff Central Train Station. When counter-demonstrators from various anti-fascist groups, totalling around 100 – 150 persons, gathered in advance of the promised fascist fighters, we found there to be merely the usual procession of christmas consumers, bustling through in a hurry, barely glancing up in their mad march to the merch. Sure, there were hell of a lot more police than usual and a couple of their put upon horses…

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Antifa occupy the fascists’ meeting point early whilst others scout the area

…waiting. But street-fascist-fighters? Nothing. One or two possible fascists braved making handgestures from quite some distance, slinking along the periphery wordlessly, before disappearing, not to be seen again. A few others maybe made it to the pub; perhaps the real reason for calling the demonstration at the station: it’s proximity to sympathetic drinking establishments, but hardly known for their islamic (extremist) punters. Whether nursing last night’s hangover or terrified at the prospect of facing UAF chants, Red Choir singers and Welsh Antifa, with their new shiny pink banner, the upshot is they did not show, let alone pass. As they put it in their own event description: “we need as many people to be here otherwise it will be pointless”.

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UAF and other anti-fascists

Despite their laughable ineptitude today, it would, however, be a mistake to completely dismiss them as a threat. They did have just over a hundred ‘committing’ to attend the event and around a thousand in their online group. They made links to the South Wales National Front and other violent Hitler-lickers. And we obviously haven’t forgotten that Muslims and mosques are currently being targeted in the physical world. But for the time being, this local group appear to be a sad collection of keyboard and barstool warriors. Let’s keep it that way.

* How they choose to describe themselves: “the government are helping the c*nts they want civil war they need for the start of the new wold order. Civil war is coming and it’s going to last around 20-30 years. We need to get our shit together now before they catch us unprepared and slaughter them all. Apparently 600-1000 refugees are coming to the Caerphilly county area we should do something about it asap !!!!!!!”

Demonstration for Anarchist and Class Struggle Prisoners at HMP Send

After this year’s London Anarchist Bookfair South Wales Anarchist’s bus went to HMP Send on Saturday night for a Noise Demonstration outside this women’s prison. People chanted calling for prison abolition and shouted cheers of solidarity. Prisoners waved back, it was great to communicate through the prison bars.

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On leaving the demonstration local screws not in uniform (one claiming to be the Governor) assaulted two women that attended the Demo. The three of them were spoiling for a fight. They blocked the road in an attempt to prevent the bus from leaving but it seems that after they discovered that the Police had no intention of coming, after around half an hour they had to let us leave.

During the course of their interaction with us, they said to us “”Haven’t you heard them all kicking off on J wing?”” and scolded us with ““Don’t you know how hard it is to control them in there?””. Needless to say hearing them say that almost made their irritating attempt at a citizen’s arrest worth it.

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In addition as being a demonstration in solidarity with Anarchist Comrades behind bars it was a also for class struggle prisoners. As prison abolitionists this quote by Angela Davis illustrates why we think it is so important for us all to show solidarity in this way;

“”Prisons do not disappear social problems, they disappear human beings. Homelessness, unemployment, drug addiction, mental illness and illiteracy are only a few of the problems that disappear from public view when the human beings contending with them are relegated to cages”.”

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Supporting Someone Through the Legal System // Cefnogi Rhywyn Drwy’r System Gyfreithiol

*Scroliwch ilawr am y Gymraeg*

Over the last year over 20 people have been arrested in protests and actions in South Wales, from short term detention at a protest to comrades being remanded in custody we have attempted to suppourt each other through this.

In order to better equip ourselves to deal with state repression of this sort we have invited Bristol Defendant Solidarity to do a workshop, sharing their of experiance in Suppourting Someone thrugh the legal system.

Bristol Defendant Solidarity is an independent group run by local volunteers, formed after the Stokes Croft riots in April 2011. They aim to provide effective, lasting unconditional support and solidarity to anyone arrested or imprisoned as a result of demos, riots, direct action and escalating class war. They also stand in solidarity with all people facing harassment from the state – whether that is a “random” Stop and Search on the street, or dawn raid as part of their investigations into “subversive” groups. We take a clear stand against state repression and police brutality.

All Welcome!

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Dros y flwyddyn ddiwethaf mae dros 20 o bobl wedi cael eu harestio mewn protestiadau a gweithredoedd uniongyrchol yn Ne Cymru, gan popbl yn cael eu dal am gyfnod byr yn y ddalfa i ein cymrodion cael eu cadw am remand am wythnosau yn y carchar rydym wedi ceisio cefnogi ein gilydd.

Er mwyn paratoi ein hunain yn well i ddelio â gormes o’r math hwn o dy’r wladwriaeth rydym wedi gwahodd “Bristol Defendant Solidarity” i wneud gweithdy, gan rannu eu profiad o gefnogi rhywyn trwy’r system gyfiawnder.

Mae Bristol Defendant Solidarity yn grŵp annibynnol sydd ei redeg gan criw o wirfoddolwyr lleol, a ffurfiwyd ar ôl y terfysgoedd Stokes Croft ym mis Ebrill 2011. Eu nod yw darparu cefnogaeth, effeithiol, parhaol ac unoliaeth diamod i unrhyw un sydd wedi eu harestio neu carcharu o ganlyniad i protestiadau, terfysgoedd, gweithredu uniongyrchol a’r rhyfel dosbarth cynyddol. Maent hefyd yn sefyll mewn unoliaeth gyda’r holl bobl sy’n wynebu cael eu harasio gan y wladwriaeth – boed hynny yn Stopio ar Chwilio ar “hap” ar y stryd, neu cyrch wawr fel rhan o’u hymchwiliadau i grwpiau “chwyldroadol”. Rydym yn cymryd safiad clir yn erbyn gormes y wladwriaeth a chreulondeb yr heddlu.

Croeso i bawb!

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