News and Reviews

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Fifth Estate # 349, Summer 1997

Friends who attended the second annual Anarchist Book Fair held March 29 in San Francisco say it was a tremendous success. It was sponsored by Bound Together Book Store, 1369 Haight, SF CA 94117 and hundreds showed up for the all-day affair. Our gratitude to Lawrence for setting up a table this year and last to distribute Fifth Estates.

The mid-November/December 1996 issue of The New Settler Interview, a northern California publication, has an interesting interview with our friend Kelpie Wilson.

Kelpie, the Earth First! wild woman who probably coined the slogan, “Love Your Mother, Don’t Become One,” has for some time advocated a radical ecofeminist population reduction politics that transcends both the malthusianism of the old boys who started Earth First! and the knee-jerk response among some progressive types that there is no problem.

Kelpie talks about how she became an Earth First! activist, the Headwaters fight, the aftermath of the Bari-Cherney bombing and Redwood Summer, the role of women in the movement and the kinds of solidarity developed among them, as well as her personal evolution from a roaming earth warrior to a rooted member of a community in Oregon.

She speaks from the heart about being an anti-natalist woman who loves kids and plays a role in the raising of other people’s children. She doesn’t claim to have all the answers (and there are things in here we don’t necessarily agree with), but Kelpie is someone who has thought about these questions far more than most.

The issue also has an inspiring interview with three young people who engaged in civil resistance tree-sitting at Headwaters, and who describe the Violence of loggers and cops, the “otherworldly” intensity of living in the treetops for several days, and their motivations. Says one, “We’re not just about saving the Headwaters, we’re about challenging what’s going on in just about every one of the houses surrounding us…It’s a fundamental, bedrock challenge to the way most people are living their lives…” New Settler Interview is $1 a copy; subs are $15 for 12 issues from P.O. Box 702, Mendocino CA 95460.

I liked the name L’Ouverture, named for Toussaint L’Ouverture (1744-1803), leader of the Haitian slave revolution, whose fighters defeated the French and the British until they were overcome by Napoleonic intrigue and military might.

L’Ouverture: The Black Marketplace of Ideas is brash and savvy, a small magazine (8 1/2″ by 5 1/2″) that packs a punch.

In the September/October 1996 issue editor Bill Campbell discusses the upsurge in right-wing racist groups and militias in an original and funny piece, “Red Necks, White Asses, Blue Collars: The True American Patriots.” Campbell argues that government repression against militias focuses attention on a handful of relatively powerless racists in order to allow the powerful racist establishment to move right along. “And, I think they’ve played their cards right…we have a ‘liberal’ President calling for 100,000 more police officers—since the ones already with nightsticks are only responsible for 8,000 cases of brutality…” He has no great love for white racists plebes, of course. “See, I’m no defender of militias. Hell, when they talk about ‘the nigger making his move,’ well, sir, I am that nigger. So motherfuck ’em. I’m just really concerned about the role they’re playing as the scapegoat. More Cops: America’s Good Guys, more and more federal cutbacks, so many ‘race cards’ are being played by our ‘leadership’ you’d think it was Vegas, the ever-growing Grand Canyon between rich and poor, the elimination of anything that looks like non-corporate welfare, more and more military spending, though we have no real enemies, while they have us ‘terrified’ over militias….” One rarely reads this refreshing point of view in small literary magazines. This issue also includes poetry by dr. juba, Colette Wilkerson and others, artwork, a short story by Isaac Webb, and a serial story. A bimonthly, L’Ouverture can be obtained for $15/12 issues (or sample issue/$2). From P.O. Box 8565, Atlanta GA 30306.

Colombia Bulletin is a useful quarterly offering more news and analysis on Colombia than is available almost anywhere else. The Winter 1996 issue contains updates from different news services; reports on environmental and social consequences of oil exploitation; human rights abuses by Colombian agents using U.S. anti-narcotics aid; the situation of indigenous Colombians; urgent action requests; and more. Major feature articles include a piece on the U.S. Army School of the Americas at Fort Benning, Georgia, which has turned out generations of mass murderers and torturers, and its effect on the Colombian military; also a piece on repression against Colombia’s peasants under the guise of fighting drug traffickers. Colombia Bulletin is four issues/$25 ($12.50 student/low-income) from CNS, P.O. Box 1505, Madison WI 53701.

The Bhopal Peoples Health and Documentation Clinic in Bhopal, India, publishes Sambhavna from Bhopal to spread information about the December, 1984 Union Carbide gas leak (which killed some 3,000 people), and its aftermath. In 1985 the FE published a well-known anti-industrial manifesto that has been widely republished, “We All Live in Bhopal,” [FE #319, Winter 1985] but we cannot assume people, particularly young people, remember it or even know of it.

Yet in Bhopal some 400,000 people continue to suffer the effects of that heinous corporate crime. The incidence of spontaneous abortions and untreatable systemic illnesses among the victims of the disaster is substantially higher and their death rate is double that of people not exposed to the gas.

Sambhavna means “possibility” in Hindi, and written as Sam Bhavna means “similar feelings.” The clinic provides health care and education to local people and disseminates information on the disaster as well as other aspects of the toxics plague. They call on those who can to volunteer skills, ideas and money. Send contributions to Medical Appeal for Bhopal, The Pesticides Trust/Bhopal Account, Eurolink Business Center, 49 Effra Road, London SW2 1BZ, U.K.

Department of Greatly Exaggerated Reports of Death: After a year and a half publishing hiatus, Anarchy has a new edition out. Following a catastrophic decision to turn over stewardship of the popular magazine to a staff not up to the task (the December 1995 issue was just sent to subscribers two months ago), Jason McQuinn is again at the helm. We haven’t received an issue yet, but it’s available from C.A.L., POB 1446, Columbia MO 65205.

In our last issue we reported Bayou La Rose’s intention to go into “hibernation for a while,” but since then they seem to he publishing even more frequently. Most of the latest issue (mid-March 1997) deals with the Dineh/Navaho resistance to forced relocation from Big Mountain.

Also, Peltier support, anti-prison activism, a tribute to George Jackson on the 25-year anniversary of his murder at San Quentin, and a tribute to Mordechai Vanunu, kidnapped and jailed by the Israeli police apparatus for telling a British newspaper about his country’s secret nuclear weapons program, and who has now spent ten years in solitary. (For more information and to support Vanunu, write the U.S. Campaign to Free Vanunu, 2206 Fox Ave., Madison WI 53711.) Bayou La Rose can be contacted at P.O. Box 5464, Tacoma WA 98415-0464.

Austin, Texas now has a radical center/info-shop, The Conspiracy of Equals, at 505 San Jacinto, Austin TX 78701. They are “non-dogmatic radicals, anarchists, activists, culture jammers, musicians, writers poets and many more people who look toward a new radical resurgence not just in a distant millennium but in the here and now.” They intend to create a library, a free school, a public space for community presentations and meetings, and mutual aid projects to help people find jobs, housing, food, etc., and to organize skill-matching/barter.

Local Austin area folks can call Josh or Chris at 482-9402 or Sam at 453-6960.

The following text is a leaflet from the Israeli peace group Gush Shalom (POB 3322, Tel Aviv 61033 Israel), and appeared in the September-October 1966 issue of the valuable newsletter, The Other Israel (TOI). The courageous and clear-minded activists, Jewish and Arab, of TOI knew exactly what was coming:

“Netanyahu, unlike Abraham Lincoln, believes that you can fool all the people all the time. He proposes to start a new round of negotiations on Hebron, casting aside the agreement which was achieved after long and arduous negotiations…

“He allows…new settlement enclaves in the Territories…[Humiliating searches at the checkpoints have been extended even to elected members of the Palestinian Legislative Council. And at the same time Netanyahu accuses the Palestinians of breaking the agreements.

The intifada in 1987 seemed to break out suddenly. In fact, it was like a dam behind which the water was rising steadily. Now, it is happening again. An enormous load of anger and frustration is accumulating day after day. Nobody could predict exactly when the next intifada will break out, and what form it will take: major terrorist attacks, killing of settlers, more uprising, or war between the Palestinian armed forces and the Israeli army…Whatever it will be, Benyamin Netanyahu will not be able to claim innocence.”

Now as things unravel once more, Netanyahu does in fact claim innocence, even blames the Palestinian Authority for not fighting “terrorism” zealously enough, all the while beginning new settlements, reneging on Palestinian autonomy measures, and even building in Jerusalem—clear violations of its own accord with the PLO. and the explosion predicted by TOI is unfolding with no end in sight to the deepening spiral of violence.

Though they are not anarchists, the TOI folks are well worth supporting for their commitment to multi-national peace work and resistance to Israeli imperial expansion.

Recent issues include many reprints of flyers and newspaper ads from the Israeli peace movement, detailed analysis and news of events there, reports on demonstrations, Mordechai Vanunu, and more. The December issue is titled, “The Imminence of War,” and contains a report on the fortieth anniversary of the massacre of unarmed Jordanian peasants by Israeli troops during the 1956 War, and excerpts from a letter by a Palestinian “administrative detainee” in an Israeli jail. The Other Israel especially needs to be disseminated in the U.S., which gives Israel billions of dollars a year in aid and military equipment.

Subs are $30 a year (students / prisoners / unemployed $15) from TOI, P.O.B. 2542 Holon 58125 Israel. They can also be contacted and subs bought in the U.S. from the America-Israel Council for Israeli-Palestinian Peace, Mary Appelman, 405 Davis Court Apt. 2106, San Francisco CA 94111.

—T. Fulano

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