mardi 11 novembre 2008


French anti-terrorist police have arrested a group of anarchist 'ultraleftisits' in a small town in Northern France. Their alleged crime is to have dropped conrete blocks onto passing TGV trains between Paris and Lille, thus causing huge delays throughout the rail system. The French media are pleased about this story as is the French Home Secretary (more sinisterly yet more honestly called the Interior Ministry here in France). The police have been following this group of 'militants since April and have linked them with other such groups in the UK and Germany. So far, no evidence has been presented to the public, yet the case seems done and dusted as far as the reporting goes. Even many on the left are pleased, since for the time these attacks were going on, the carrot of blame was pointing in their direction.

Seasoned watchers of State anti-terrorist actions ought to be on their guard though. If the State has been watching them so intently, why weren't they caught in the act of sabotaging the trains? By the accounts of the locals in the village where the anarcho commune was situated, they were quiet and polite people. Of course, there is no correlation between politeness and lack of sabotage intent, yet the group itself had no name and was no more than twenty in number.

The interesting thing about this case, is that these (misguided) acts of 'resistance' have been met with the full wrath of the state in full anti-terror guise. The media also showed footage from anti-globalisation and anti-CPE riots from the last few years, presumably to form the association in our minds between acting against capitalism and 'mindless vandalism'.

My suspicion, worth not very much I know, is that these supposed saboteurs will be quietly released once their function has been exhausted. That of distraction and ideological dripfeed. Either that, or they have been snatched by mistake. Given previous arrests (and worse) by European anti-terror forces, this seems a likely outcome. But what of the actions themselves? In their place, they are useful ways of disrupting the flow of social order. In pre-revolutionary times they would be minor actions amongst wholesale and widespread uprising and disorder. On their own, they are little more than doomed cries for help and for capture by the gleeful over -equipped and underemployed terror squads.

Surely we can do better than this. . .