Do or Die, Anonymous
Do or Die Issue 1
The Voice of the British Earth First! Movement
"Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, magic in it. Begin it now."
Merseyside Green Action/Earth First!
Mersey Green Action/Earth First! is planning to hold a day of non-violent direct action on and at the premises of ICI Runcorn on Friday February 29th. As yet we have not decided which of the two plants to target, but as both plants produce the same toxic filth and are situated close to each other, so if enough people turn out there is no reason why both cannot be hit.
ICI Castner Kellner
The North West NRA allows this plant to discharge over 70 billion litres of toxic effluent every year into the Weston Canal which in turn flows into the River Mersey. This plant also discharges five tonnes of mercury and over 100 tonnes of halogenated hydrocarbons from over 30 outlet pipes. These chemicals are highly toxic and likely to accumulate.
ICI Rocksavage discharges over 6 billion litres of polluting effluent every year into the Weston Canal. It also discharges over 200 tonnes of halogenated hydrocarbons and hexachlorobutadiene-butadiene every year. As if this were not enough they also pump out carbon tetrachloride, which is a prominent ozone destroyer.
Both plants have been caught illegally discharging heavy metals such as zinc, copper mercury and chromium. Both Castner Kellner and Rocksavage produce CFCs, the single largest known destroyer of this planet's ozone layer.
As with some EF! actions the police have been notified as have the press - both local and national. We would be grateful of you could write to us telling us if you will be coming and how many will be with you. The mutual aid centre will be available - bring your own placards, banner, Kryptoes etc.
Mid Somerset EF!
The group has had its ups and downs, though small it does have a good network with other labour and eco groups in the area. This has helped when coming down to pushing for greater imagination in actions. The group has been out sabbing the local hunt, managing to totally spoil the West Somerset hunt with only six of us. There have been of course the usual bruises and roughing up that hunt sabbers the country wide come up against.
The big issue is the new relief road which is due to be started in February. This will trash an old railway line presently used as a public walkway - much of this area is now quite wild. Though most people seem apathetic towards the relief road (never being given real alternatives by the council), there are still a lot against it and we will attempt to muster them when the building begins. We have already stated that we will 'Fight to the end'.
The health food boycott sheet has gone bloody bananas, with thousands of copies around the country - and some in the States we believe. We hope to get an updated version out by the new year.
As for '93, well we hope to muster more folk to back up SSEF! Whatley Quarry campaign, also we are planning joint action with the wobblies (IWW) over coal imports in support of the miners. We have also been offered the chance to start up a resource centre, so that an effective eco-community defence network can be set up - we will be running a Wessex wide magazine. There is also a Somerset Greens Conference coming about in the Spring.
Oxford Bike Blockade
On 5th December '92, rush hour traffic in Oxford was gridlocked when cyclists from Green Action and Cyclox began pedalling en masse around the plain, a strategic roundabout in the city infamous for the number of accidents careless motorists have caused those on pushbikes. The cops took over half an hour to arrive after their patrol car and van were trapped in the jam stretching all the way down Oxford High Street. Worse for them was that the cyclists were behaving entirely legally. To break up the demo, they were eventually forced to arrest one GA! activist for riding without lights, and threatened others with the same fate. Naturally they couldn't catch them as they cycled away down the empty exit lanes. The arrestee was subsequently released without charge. Many involved look forward to more of the same in the future...
After a slight collapse, we have pieced together the group once again, a bit wobbly but we feel it will now gather strength. We are going to do some talks and discussions in January and February on Deep Ecology vs Social Ecology (or deep and social ecology), Permaculture, and (on the 7th Feb) the second Social Ecology Network gathering is to be held in Leeds.
We're looking forward to supporting Liverpool's ICI action, but plan no actions of our own (Thorn Moor looks well off the agenda I'm afraid). Following our action against the Yorkshire Post, we understand they are reviewing their sources of paper - this may call for a party or for further actions. Our action against Lloyd's and Midland in November was small but successful: 3 people locked on to the counter, which the fire brigade had to dismantle. No arrests, no hassle.
South Somerset EF!
SSEF! have been up to their eyes fighting Whatley Quarry expansion as well as being involved in the Dongas campaign, on many occasions we have attempted to show the ARC link with the destruction of Twyford Down.
Actions over the summer have been quite confrontational, with a few injuries on occasion. SSEF! successfully managed to blockade the quarry gates for a morning. There was a very large backlog of trucks lining up for delivery, which stretched right down the road into the village.
In October, SSEF! targeted ARC offices in Frome, dumping a load of stone in the entrance of the building. This was then staffed by EF!ers and local druids. The entrance was held for a few hours, attempts to remove people and stone proved hopeless, only after the (we expect the entire) police force came out in large numbers, was the line broken. Through this action and others a large anti quarry campaign is coming together from the locals.
Twyford Down has seen SSEF! put a lot of energy into networking and publicising the issue outside the Hampshire area. We have also been instrumental in researching Tripod tactics etc. For '93, we are working on forming a regional anti-road campaign and providing resources to local groups fighting for ecology.
Tamar Valley EF!
The planned expansion of Devonport dockyard to allow the refitting of Trident submarines needs to be strongly challenged. As usual, it will be the workers at the yard who will be most at risk and we need to join with them to defeat the new plans and stop the refitting of Trafalgar class submarines as well. If the work has to be done - let the bosses do it!
The dockyard could be used for civilian purposes such as building lifeboats and buses. The local community should be given back their marketplace and the military kicked out of Plymouth once and for all! There need not be huge job losses and if the workers controlled the dockyard there'd be a lot less pollution entering the Tamar and the Sound.
Plans are afoot to upgrade the A38 from Exeter to Plymouth motorway. Oh yes, and they're thinking of building a second Tamar road bridge as well. We know that car use will expand to fill these expansions within a matter of years. If we had a decent public transport network and people lived closer to their workplace we wouldn't need such ridiculous road building schemes. But the logic of greed and the power of the car lobby will rule for some time to come. We won't be surprised if fellow EF!ers take action when these developments begin.
More Attacks on Central Park
Even though the proposals to build another unwanted supermarket on Central Park were dropped a few months ago, we won't be surprised if the developers try their dirty tricks again. The local community who use the park for spiritual and physical renewal (and for taking their dogs for a shit) were up in arms before, so next time we will be right behind them if the threat to the park re-appears.
South Downs EF!
Rising from the sweeping hills of the South Downs is a monster - turquoise and gargantuan. It is the master of this city and below its ugly jutting features the townspeople scurry in a sea of carcinogenic smoke. But among this mist of death and disease there is hope. SDEF! (Shining Defenders of the Ecological Frontline!) has been bringing light into this desolate urban hell. On the Saturday before Christmas, EF! held a Carmaggeddon action in a busy shopping street. The action lasted for about an hour, but gained a large amount of support from shoppers. A few passing FoE members even showed their support. We are planning a cycle action along the lines of Oxford's for the spring. The aforementioned turquoise monster is of course the European headquarters of American Excess. SDEF! felt so graced to be in the presence of this great bastion of modern economics (read: greed) that it has started, in solidarity with German and North American groups, a campaign against Amex. The main reason for us targeting them is because they plan to destroy a place named East Fork - the last remaining large biologically diverse ecosystem in Colorado, USA. East Fork is home to species such as Wolverine, River Otter, Lynx and Grey Wolf. Amex is planning to turn East Fork's 6,400 acres of untouched wilderness into a rich man's playground of 2,700 housing units, ski runs with eight lifts and a gondola. Some 70 acres of wetland will be destroyed, as well as the calving grounds for a herd of 300 elk.
The campaign has already forced Amex into putting the ski development 'under review', a previously unheard of step. Let American Express know how you feel about huge New York companies who destroy wilderness. Collect card application leaflets (bundles of which can be found in any shop with an Amex sign) and send them back FREEPOST. You can also jam up their 0800 number (0800 521313) by ringing them up from a phone box and leaving the phone off the hook. Amex info/campaign packs are available for 50p.
Since the summer much of our energy has been given to Twyford Down. Much that is important and positive has come out of this, but it has been difficult. There will be a meeting in the new year talking about 'Where do we go from here?'.
With the long rumoured South Coast motorway now public with the CBI publishing plans for an expressway and outer M25, we are and have been involved in a number of anti-road campaigns. In our bioregion alone the DoT is planning to build 23 bypasses in the next 6 years (The vogons strike again).
On the first day last term we staged a bank action in the Barclays on campus at Sussex uni. This involved two people locking themselves into the entrance of the bank - staff and customers were evacuated through the fire escape. Outside, banners were unfurled and leaflets handed out to the growing crowd of students - who only ten minutes beforehand had received their grant cheques. The action was followed by disruptions of the bank's stalls at the Freshers fair and a week of intensive leafleting. The elves obviously approved, as the day after the action both banks on campus were completely covered in flyers and both had their cash machines and locks glued up.
We have been helping to set up a very active local permaculture network whose current projects include - allotments, a forest garden, running courses in permaculture, a 32 acre commune in Sussex, clandestine tree planting, various urban gardens and a promotional event in the town centre. We find this gives us a healthy balance between positive and negative campaigning. (After all, permaculture is the earth... [ORIGINAL INCOMPLETE]
International Day of Temperate Action
In British Colombia, Canadian logging giant MacMillan Bloedel is turning wilderness into wasteland. One of the most diverse regions on Earth, the temperate rainforest of Vancouver Island, is being clearcut to bankroll the US junk bond market. The chainsaw massacre is already going down at such a rate that 1,600 year old trees are being left to rot where they fall – by 2002, only the 2% of rainforest in national reserves will be left. The Canadian government is aiding and abetting this ecocide by selling MacBlo tree farm licenses. Attempts to replace diverse rainforest with Sitka Spruce monoculture – a potentially profitable pulp crop – invariably fail because loss of old growth tree cover causes massive topsoil erosion.
Environmentalists describe Vancouver Island as the ‘Brazil of the North’ and have forged an alliance with the Lil’Wat nation, who never ceded THEIR land to MacBlo and view the corporation as thieves and trespassers. Last year Lil’Wats invited an Amazonian chief to BC. Shocked by the wanton deforestation, he told them: “Don’t worry about us, you’ve got it far worse here.” Since the 1970s hundreds have been arrested defending the forest by all means necessary, their tactics range from blockading logging trails and tree sitting to arson and sabotage. To widen the struggle, the activists made the 3rd of August an International Day of Action.
In Britain, Earth First! showed solidarity by targeting the largest manufacturer of disposable paper products in the UK, Scott Paper. Its twee green advertising disguises the fact that 25% of the pulp it uses is supplied direct from Vancouver Island by MacBlo. As a result of this deception, British consumers unknowingly flush away a million bog rolls of temperate rainforest a day.
A month before the demo, reconnaissance on Scotts' Kentish mill on Crete Hall Road, Northfleet, was carried out by Oxford EF! and activists from Gravesend and Dartmouth Class War who knew the area and had inside contacts. In a disgraceful show of one-way solidarity, Oxford EF!ers insisted that Class War should not formally attend their planned blockade with banners or leaflets. They feared Class War’s visible presence might tarnish their image with the media – absurd given that the activists concerned would abide by non-violent principles and that the Lil’Wat and Vancouver EF! Had little compunction about dynamiting MacBlo’s dozers out of BC!
Realising MacBlo’s record was indefensible, Scott tried to put a lid on EF! by slapping a high court injunction on them, listing all their offices and plants, including their PO Box! As neither of those named on the injunction were involved in the planning or planned to attend the blockade, the injunction was ignored. As a non-organisation with no formal membership, accounts or records, EF! could not be sued.
The Northfleet mill was at the far end of a run-down industrial estate surrounded on two sides by the sheer cliffs of an old chalk quarry and on the third by the Thames. Kent constabulary were paid £60,000 to seal the mill off to activists – they illegally blocked the two access roads, put launches out on the river and even lined the top of the quarry to stop people abseiling in from residents’ back yards! Despite this, Scott decided not to take any chances and gave its workers the day off, except for a skeleton staff to run driers and their PR man, Paul Edwards.
The sixty activists that came barrelling in down the access roads at dawn on Monday found themselves outnumbered more than two-to-one by the old bill. They weren’t up to busting through police lines that early in the morning, but successfully screened a team of six London Autonomists from 56a InfoShop who scaled a wall into Northfleet terminal where mountainous pulp bales were stacked ready for processing. The police were doing such a good job of blocking the road – something that we would have had to do if they hadn’t – that activists, one dressed as a tree, settled down in front of the barriers for the next three hours to make sure nothing came in or out of the mill, amusing themselves by decorating coppers and fences with bog roll.
Around 11am everyone had recovered from the night before to get active. A board displaying Scotts’ injunction was ripped down and ritually trampled underfoot by all present before they tried climbing the fence it was attached to, chanting, “Stop the CHOP, Boycott SCOTT”. Pushing and shoving between activists and police resulted in their illegal roadblocks toppling like skittles. With police lines broken, half a dozen activists legged it down Crete Hall Road towards the mill, the old bill trying to wrestle them to the ground. Much to the surprise and delight of those cheering him on, one activist dodged the flying tackles and made it onto the roof of Scott’s pulp store and proceeded to hoist up a banner.
As the demo wound down, the tribe head out to Gravesend nick, where the dozen arrested on the day were being held. On the way they dived into Asda and fuckin’ Tescos, blocking the aisles by building walls of Andrex, Scotties and Bodyform boxes – demanding that store managers refuse to stock Scott until the corporation agreed to manufacture its disposables from recycled paper rather than virgin pulp. After an hour-long sit-down outside the nick, the cops were forced into releasing all those arrested without charge.
Scott retaliated against the blockade by seeking to enforce its injunction against two EF!ers that had not even attended. Whilst their attempt proved futile, the anti-Scott boycott the blockade was engineered to initiate has not materialised. In addition to being intimidated by the injunction, Oxford EF!’s appalling treatment of Class War and dismissive attitude to other local concerns – including a waste-to-energy generator in Crete Hall Road, against which thousands of Gravesendians had marched the previous weekend – has not given them a base in the broader community from which to operate against Scott.
There are lessons to be learnt from this action. As events at Twyford have demonstrated, injunctions are becoming a tactic used by the state to suppress militant ecological protest – make sure you never give your true name to anyone (especially in the media!), because without it, injunctions aren’t worth the paper they’re written on. This is one of the ways that the media becomes detrimental to our activity. Another is organising one-off demonstrations specifically to grab the attention of the media – the cops are wise to this and the media found the Scott blockade even more boring than the participants. Flitting between one example of corporate ecological abuse to another to publicise it without doing it real damage does little to effectively defend the earth, and as noted above, works on a law of diminishing returns in terms of media interest. A worse effect of such a spectacular protest was that in an attempt to project a certain image to the media, the anarcho-mediocre ideologues of Oxford EF! excluded their sole source of local support. Without their assistance, locals will never organise for the ongoing campaign needed to genuinely inconvenience Scott and cause it real economic damage. Compared to the threat of the incinerator, what goes on at Thames House is a peripheral issue.
Because of a series of hesitations and wasted opportunities, the anti-Scott boycott is going to have to be built again from scratch. It is an important issue, so let’s get to it.
Derek Wall Fingers the Green Nazis
[ORIGINAL INCOMPLETE] ... outside of your local Marks and Spencers? Have you heard rumours of Satrivi Devi, the Hindu fascist, who praised the SS for their protection of animals and Hitler for his love of trees? Perhaps you have read Ecology in the 20th Century, where Anna Bramwell, an ex-young member officer of the Conservative Monday Club, argues that much of Green philosophy is rooted in the ideas of conservative and sometimes racist thinkers! What the hell is going on? Perhaps you have been approached by the distributists to help co-ordinate an anti-McDonalds day. Or been sent a copy of Green Dawn, an innocuous looking and rather environmentalist paper, put out by the National Front. Or have you been fooled, as Jonathan Porritt and the Centre for Alternative Technology were, into writing for The Scorpion published by Martin Walker, the former NF organiser for Central London.
A few years ago, some Deep Ecologists said some racist and extreme things. Ed Abbey complained of Mexicans swamping the US, forgetting that all sorts of races propelled not by genetics but economics and greed had formed the US on the blood of the Indians. The despicable Chris Manes in his EF! Miss Anthrope column claimed to be taking the piss with his view but briefly associated EF! US with the view that AIDS was a good thing and the Ethopian famine victims who starved while we in the West dined on their countries, deserved to die. Deep Ecology is no longer associated with such unpleasant views, loving nature and all species requires respect for our own species. Real fascists, the guys and gals who back up their racist views with baseball bats and on occasion bombs, the European equivalent of Guatamalan death squads, who believe in an international Jewish conspiracy, the Fuhrer prinzip, celebrate Hitler's birthday, have for a long time been trying to infiltrate the green movement.
Eco-fascism is on the march with a three pronged assault that if successful will destroy Ecology.
The first prong is ideological. Scorpion, a magazine set up by former NF organiser Martin Walker to link neo Nazis with the Green movement, has over the past four years hoodwinked a whole series of prominent Greens from John Papworth (former editor of Resurgence and an ex-advisor to Zambian leader Kenneth Kaunda) to Peter Cadogan, the pacifist and decentralist, into attending its conferences. Another Scorpion conference goer Anna Bramwell (see Searchlight) in her books 'Ecology in the 20th centruty', 'Blood and Soil', 'Walther Darre', and Hitler's 'Green Party', has argued that the first Greens were to be found in Hitler's Germany and that 'Ecologism' is a phenomenon of the 'despised white European north'. As far back as 1973 racists were blaming Third World over-population for the problems created by First World greed, in what was termed 'The Lifeboat Thesis', arguing against aid to famine victims but saying nothing about the links between Third World starvation and First World overconsumption. Little is said of the brave struggle of African, Asian and South American greens like Chico Mendes (the Brazilian trade unionist killed for protecting the rainforests), or the rural women involved in the Kenyan Green Belt movement by 'New Right' Ecologists. The plight of the Tasmanian aborigines and other Native people who lived in balance with the environment, but were exterminated by European colonialists is forgotten. According to Anna who somehow managed to attend the 1989 Green Party conference, Ecology should not be confused with the fight for social justice.
The second prong is organisational. Suddenly the brown shirts are green. The Strasserite blood and soil wing of the NF has been followed by other Fascist groups into exploiting environmental issues. Where NF once accused the anti-nuclear movement of being financed by Moscow gold, they now endorse opposition of the building of Hinckley point. The myth of a racially pure rural Britain peppered by nationalistic communes is closely linked to NF protests over the grubbing up of hedges and acid rain. Hull NF have advertised for members worried by 'the growing scandal of filth and pollution in our waterways'. Despite their hatred of other races the far right have become animal lovers. In fact the far right think of everything, Mosley supposedly invented Keynsian economic growth, Hitler built the first motorways and both were supposedly advocates of the EC before anyone else thought of it. That the far right have taken up green issues should not fool us to their real nature, it should not lull us into inaction.
The final element is of direct infiltration. The far right have a strategy of moving into all major political parties and former members of the National Front and British National Party have turned up as Labour, Liberal and Conservative candidates in the past. The NF are reputed to have put candidates under the Green or Ecology label in the past in areas where the real Greens are thin on the ground. Further afield Die Gruenen have had major problems with fascist infiltration and have closed down several local Green groups. The National Front have gone as far as to stand a candidate under the title of 'Greenwave', a name ripped off an organisation set up by members of Greenpeace. Obviously neo-nazis find it easier to get votes under bogus green banners than as fascists. In 1989 a parliamentary by-election candidate for the real Green Party was offered help by a mysterious individual from the East End of London, who suggested that she campaigned under the slogan 'On the Crest of the Greenwave', she declined and other members have been warned of the threat. Yet as long ago as the mid 1970s other would-be environmentalists campaigned under the title of the Survival Party, complete with far right ideology and Mosleyite Flashes of lightning insignia on their publications. The far right soil everything they come into contact with and the greens must be aware of their corrupting influence, step up their vigilance and work for radical policies that attack the racism and inequality that underpins ecological destruction.
The animal rights movement, bizarrely, has been plagued by former and existing members of the NF. There is no doubt the fascists will attempt to infiltrate Earth First! Many of them appear like your average hippy! They are by no menas all skinhead thugs (equally groups like Skinheads against racial prejudice and all the sound Gay/lesbian suedeheads illustrate that having short hair doesn't mean you are a nasty nazi!). Be warned! They are thin on the ground but beware. The British National Party, the largest (perhaps 600 plus) nazi group, ignore Deep Ecology, but equally demand opposition. There is an excellent article in the latest issue of Green Anarchist, on the psychology of the BNP and fighting the fascists in general. Larry O'Hara, an ex-member of the excellent Big Flame group, bizarrely associated by Searchlight with the far right, is doing some good work on the subject. Ian Coates of Bristol university has produced a useful paper entitled 'A Cuckoo in the Nest' on the NF infiltration of the Green movement, send him an SAE and a small donation to cover photocopying and I am sure he will let you have a copy (Ian Coates, c/o Dept of Sociology, Bristol University, Woodlands Road, Bristol). Also get hold of 'The Bigger Tory Vote' by Nick Toezek, published by AK Press.
Finally why not join your local Anti-Fascist Action group or Anti-Fascist Alliance group, remember the Anti-Nazi League is a naff vehicle for those merchants of debased Leninist bollocks, the Socialist Workers Party.
Remember people are dying because of Nazis in France, Spain, Germany and in this country.
Derek Wall is an Eco-Socialist, a good friend of EF! and lives in Bristol (some of this is from an article first published in Searchlight, June 1989)
Sea Shepherd Declares War on Whalers
With Norway's totally unacceptable decision to withdraw from the IWC and resume commercial whaling, the Sea Shepherd Society declares it will regard the Eastern North Sea as a SECOND FRONT for its campaigns against exploitation of marine resources and will take whatever action necessary to protect marine mammals. Sea Shepherd would like to remind Norway of what happened to half of the Icelandic whaling fleet in Reykjavik on November 9th 1986: half their fleet was scuttled. On Sunday 28th, June 1992, Sea Shepherd staged a protest at the Norwegian embassy in London. This will be just the beginning of a campaign that Sea Shepherd will keep up until Norway retracts its decision.
Sea Shepherd Conservation Society UK, Box 5, Ashford, Middlesex, TW1 52P
Direct Action Against All Bloodsports
The Northumberland beagling festival was this year sabotaged for the sixth consecutive year. Consistent pressure forced the hosts, the Newcastle and District Beagles (NDB), to change the festival's format yet again. There were fewer meets than ever before.
This year, via advertisements paid by the BFSS, the public were invited to come and watch the official festival, which consisted of just five meets. In fact, there were actually two meets per day (ie twenty in all) with afternoon meet in the main week of the festival. Hunting actually commenced in the week before the advertised start of the festival, but luckily cynical local sabs ignored the official line and turned down on Wednesday 16th September to sab the Valley Holme Beagles from West Yorkshire who packed up at noon. Sabs went on to sab the NDB in the afternoon.
Thursday saw the Wick & District Beagles, from Bristol, sabbed in the morning but the NDB killed in the afternoon. No hunt was found on the Friday.
The advertised meet began on 21 September at 10.30 am on moors above Redesdale. From the opposte side of the valley we could see vehicles lining the roads. There were two TV crews, police vans, Landrovers, a police horsebox, five sab vehicles, reporters, supporters, security staff cars, a BFSS rep, the local MP, and even a hound van. Overhead a police helicopter flew past.
However, the great British public declined to take up the offer of paying £3 to stand on a public road, except for two people who were mistaken for sabs and asked to leave the land.
As hounds unboxed, saboteurs entering fields were confronted by heavies from a private security firm who had been hired to evict them. This was a surprise both for sabs and for the Northumbria Police. About a dozen heavies were hired from Olympia International (of Huddersfield, West Yorkshire) who were managed at the scene by Mark Pendlebury. The contractors were Estate Management Services, represented by Steven Stacey. The final paymaster is not yet known, but the cost was said to be £15,000. Press reports which claimed that the heavies were ex-SAS men did no impress those who saw them in action.
As with any heavies, those who suffered most were smaller sabs, sabs out on their own and women sabs. In the face of this tempers were kept and there were always sabs there to distract hounds. There were no chases but the NDB did chop a leveret at the end of the day.
On Tuesday Hertfordshire's Newmarket Beagles hunted nearby. The weather was poor, and security staff used All-Terrain Vehicles (four-wheeled motorbikes) to chase after sabs - perhaps they had seen them used in the Falklands?
The same pattern of evictions followed, but on a later meet the supporters had to circle the hunt, no doubt doing a fine pre-beating job. From this normal sabbing began to emerge. When hounds managed a longer chase they left this circle and sabs were waiting to call them away. Hunting ended soon after.
On Wednesday three sabs went off to the Trinity Food Beagles. Unfortunately sabs lost track of them on the A697.
Back at the NDB kennels the hunt escaped a planned demonstration by leaving early - something for sabs to watch out for in the future.
By the time hunting began sabs were already on the fell. The hunt killed quickly after a short chase before sabs could intervene. Evictions were notably rougher, with the security men trying to bundle sabs into vehicles to cope with the distances. The hounds were called off two scents as they crossed a ridge. As they crossed back the entire pack was called from 400 yards away, leaving the huntsman and security staff behind. Instead of hunting, the beagles ran around a plantation, and this was the end of the day's hunting.
There was a smaller meet on Thursday and the NDB soon came within reach. They were unable to sustain a long hunt. Eventually hounds ran from the main area and were hunted on into a plantation. They could not be made to run on through, but stayed to be collected after a long delay. Unfortunately the hare they had over-run crawled back to the meet and was killed after being hunted to a standstill. There was little that sabs could do to save it.
Our bodies are tired
The earth is bored with our weight.
We hang loose,
Our hands covered in ashes.
The scythe has swept the terraces,
The fields ploughed to the sword.
And we are left a piece of dust
To reflect on.
In the distance the prophets
Rejoice in their omen,
For we have achieved their final word.
I remember when the stream
Could be handled,
Its juices quenching a beggar's
Cool around the lips and belly,
Its freshness so clear and pure
But the hand has become and greedy,
Sweat has fouled the rivers brown,
Fools jesting in gills bursting,
Now only the carcasses travel the river down.
The shore had never failed to attract
Feathers varied as the nations gathered
Their heads stooped
Then raised to chatter.
That frenzied furore cut the air.
Like memories they are now only skeletons,
Long since have their numbers swelled the rocks,
Drainpipes, the sills and the angels
The masters were only jealous
Envious of what they didn't have.
So they spiced the gullets with poison,
Shot millions as they crossed the mountain heights.
The eggs were no longer heard to crack
Young heads failed to rise for dinner.
Man has become the victor,
And his children were all destined
To go mad.
Night Of The ELFin
The night is our mother,
Her dark hair covers our bodies
She fills the air with freshness,
silence as we seek to avenge her pain.
She asks little in return,
only to protect her young,
the womb of her creation,
her flesh, skin that... is the
very beauty of our land.
Small, but commited,
we rake havoc on those
who possess the knife,
carving the valley's
till they bleed.
They are the enemy that
we live to fight,
they are the enemy who's
prisoners we liberate,
and they are the enemy who we
swear to run into the ground
We are the ELFin,
those who carry the torch and flame
to live or die
and no surrender,
we are the venom of
our mothers fiery rain.
IT MUST BE DONE
Ears stuck to the netted bars.
It must be done.
Eyes filled with pus.
Rabbits brains for the knife.
It must be done, be done.
their bodies fill the crashing cars.
It must be done.
Bloated for the distillery,
a dalmatian strapped by all fours
spread till they could-will break.
It shall be done, be done.
Another cat feels the shock of resistance,
Wires cross her face.
Her paws are shaking,
her piss rolls to the floor,
an uncontrollable mistake.
Hugging, snuggling, terrified to part.
It has to be done.
One watches as the other is hung,
watches as it strikes the dark.
It has been done.
Then immediately spliced and carved,
still howling in pain.
The living suffer in eternal captivity,
blinded, scalded and starved.
The Environmental Impact of the Car
"We are not going to do away with the great car economy."
- Margaret Thatcher, 1990
For much of the century the car has come to represent personal freedom and economic wealth with people openly boasting to be a two or even a three car family.
But now with a million extra cars on the road each year this country's car based transport system is beginning to cause personal misery and economic chaos. Dirty, dangerous and deteriorating, it is rarely out of the news. The government's response to this growing car use (which could be around 35 million by the year 2035) is to build new roads and as we all know more roads mean MORE CARS.
Vehicle emissions pump out deadly fumes which are altering our climate and endangering our health. Car pollution has been linked to asthma, bronchitis, heart problems, and even cancer. Around 5000 people die in road accidents each year.
Car production involves numerous wasteful processes and materials. 23 million tyres are discarded each year in the UK alone, often illegally. During 1989-90, 28 million gallons of motor oil was dumped into our fresh water systems.
Meanwhile road building on a major scale still goes on. Spending on trunk roads has doubled to over £15 million whilst this Tory government has been in power. Every mile of motorway takes 25 acres of land, 250,000 tonnes of sand and gravel. Areas of great natural beauty and importance are being covered in concrete and tarmac. Accelerating car use is becoming a catalogue of total madness and unless we stop it very soon it will just keep on getting worse.
A Climate for Disaster!
Global warming has recently emerged at the top of the world's environmental agenda. In October 1990, the verdict of the world's climate scientists, expressed through the Intergovernmental Panel on Climactic Change (IPCC) was equivocal. Greenhouse gases emitted into the Earth's atmosphere are accumulating rapidly as a direct result of human activities. This will produce rapid warming of the Earth's temperature, with unforeseeable tragic results. The world's community must reduce emissions of greenhouse gases by a minimum of 60%. Cars are involved because they are significant emitters of carbon dioxide, of all the gases carbon dioxide is thought to have contributed 55% to global warming between 1980 and 1990. The amount of carbon dioxide emitted is directly related to carbon based fuel burnt. THERE IS NO ADD-ON TECHNOLOGY TO REDUCE EMISSIONS OF CARBON DIOXIDE FROM VEHICLE EXHAUSTS: The only solution is to reduce the use of cars and to introduce new emission free methods of transport.
The average European car produces over 4 tonnes of carbon dioxide every year. Because of the number of cars on today's roads these emissions are a substantial part of the world's total - some 14% of the world's carbon dioxide from fossil fuel comes from the tail pipes of the world's vehicles. Add the emission from exploration and transportation, refining and the distribution of fuel and this figure is 15-20% of world emissions.
Chlorofluorocarbons are the major cause of the destruction of stratospheric ozone, the layer of gas that blocks harmful ultraviolet radiation and sun reaching the Earth. CFC 11 and CFC 12 have global warming potentials 3,500 and 7,300 times more powerful than carbon dioxide over a 100 year period. Currently their concentrations in the atmosphere are increasing by about 4% each year.
One of the major sources of CFCs in the atmosphere is motor vehicle air conditioning. In 1987, approximately 48% of all new cars, trucks and coaches worldwide were equipped with air conditioners. Annually, about 120,000 tonnes of CFCs are used in new vehicles and in servicing air conditioners in older ones. In all, these account for around 30% of global demand for CFC 11 and CFC 12.
Motor manufacturers have pledged to phase out use of CFCs in air conditioners but are planning to use HCFCs (Hydro-chlorofluorocarbons) which are also powerful greenhouse gases and still contribute to the destruction of the ozone layer.
Some manufacturers such as Mercedes are using newer substances called HFC (Hydrofluorocarbons) which do not destroy the ozone layer, unfortunately these chemicals are powerful greenhouse gases and over time will contribute significantly to global warming. The IPCC comment that substances such as HFCs and HCFCs, if used in large quantities will contribute up to 10% of global warming.
It is apparently to late to prevent some warming of the Earth as it would be impossible to remove the gases which have already been pumped into the atmosphere, however immediate reductions of all the greenhouse gases are essential, and we must start moving away from use of coal, oil and gas to clean energy systems. To reduce emissions of gases I have mentioned and others such as benzene, carbon monoxide, a number of policies would have to be adopted:
The polluter pays: car owners/drivers should be made to pay the true costs of driving; this will include the cost of environmental damage.
Switching government spending from private to public transport.
Banning cars from all major city/town centres.
Ending all subsidies for the car.
Introducing government legislation for all new cars to be no emission vehicles.
Do you know
The average car produces four times its own weight in carbon dioxide every year.
Motor vehicles generate more air pollution than any other form of activity, in Britain road transport generates 85% of carbon monoxide, 45% of nitrogen and 38% of all hydrocarbons.
Britain's environment for cyclists is the second worst in the EC.
Around 75% of car journeys are five miles or less, well within easy cycling distance.
Only by implementing these policies and re-educating people about the true implications of car use will we be able to bring about a cleaner, safer world in which phone boxes in Mexico won't have to sell oxygen at 2 dollars a shot, a world in which children will be able to play safely without having to constantly be aware of the dangers which race around them. A world where areas of great natural beauty such as Twyford Down and Oxleas woods are not under threat of being entombed in concrete and tarmac - lost forever.
Phil (Merseyside EF!)
The Store Wars
Supermarkets on the Run! The Golden Hill Campaign
Battle for Golden Hill
This summer saw heavy confrontation between police and demonstrators over the proposed Tesco's superstore site at Golden Hill in Bristol. Local residents strongly objected to the store being built on an inner-city Greenfield site that was used as a recreation area for children.
For 70 days residents held out against construction crews and police attempts to enter the field. Many people set up tents for overnight watches and barricades were built to prevent any trucks entering. The network that was established within the locality was so well organised that within 30 minutes, 300 people could be called to defend the site.
This action certainly presented a new phase in community actions of this nature. The whole community was prepared to take up direct action to protect what they felt was rightly theirs. The urban sprawl of Bristol made the Golden Hill site precious, an area of land large enough for folk to escape the traffic and concrete. Tesco's were dismayed at such resistance, they couldn't believe that ordnary citizens would challenge them in such a way. And what must have surprised them even more was the unity that they were faced with. No political divisions on this, mate. Local leading Tory standing next to Green socialist, planning the next day's move together. A conservative looking woman, smartly dressed, was handing out tea to a new age traveller, the two chatting and passing the time of day. At one point, someone from the SWP attempted to print anti-Tory leaflets, bringing them onto the site, he was soon dispatched, mostly from those from the Left.
I had been called down by the residents to help with NVDA training and tactics. The first thing I was met with was the kindness and an amazing spirit of defiance. Over the two days there, workshops were held in the pouring rain, packed with near 20/30 people all willing to learn new ideas on security, legal, and general tactics. An afternoon saw 15 women practising chaining themselves to gates etc., while others prepared defences out of wire and stakes. One elderly lady pointed out to me that as far as she was concerned she was 'fighting a war'.
Towards the end injunctions were laid on a few individuals, but this didn't stop operations, those people just directed activities from their houses. The last two days saw very ugly scenes, police violence ensuing, most residents totally shocked by such brutality. The remaining trees that were still standing in front of the field proved the biggest fight. Tree sitters spent 29 hours perched like parrots until they were hauled down. One woman was still in the tree as the bastards sawed away. With all of Bristol on their side, a petition stretching to the thousands, still the police waded in.
But this isn't the end of the story, as a few weeks later, a coalition was formed with groups from all over the country who are also fighting such campaigns. And the same activists who organised Golden Hill are mustering to fight Safeways who want to build on a cricket pitch on the outside of Bristol. With Tesco's, Safeways and others building near 20 stores each and every year - such battles will become frequent.
What these actions show is that the community does have the ability to resist if it wants to. That it contains the resources to do so, without relying upon 'professional Green groups' to wade in and take over. That petitions and the like have their limits, and only real imaginative direct action and good networking can take on the might of companies like Tesco's.
For me personally, I was nothing but inspired. My hope for ordinary folk to finally take up the gauntlet was beginning to show light. Only through 'my backyard' actions will folk be aware of what lies beyond it, and how it is also being trashed. I also learned that the only real way of helping folk in their fight is to get in there amongst them, and get your hands dirty.
The Forgotten Enemy
Within both the animal rights and green movements there are certain issues that are not touched by mainstream groups. Certain issues are 'too extremist' to attract the more moderate souls. One such issue is the friendly neighbourhood supermarket.
In Turning Point issue 27 we are told Dewhursts is closing 600 shops and this is blamed on competition from Supermarkets. On the one hand this is good news. It is good to know that Dewhursts is on the way out. But on the other hand you must ask yourself - are we getting something worse in its place?
The case against the supermarkets produces a long list, so for this article I have decided to look at just four issues that roughly cover the area of animal rights, green issues and community defence. The arguments against the supermarkets are as follows:
1) Supermarkets are just as bad as the local butchers because both sell meat. Most modern supermarkets have a meat counter. On these counters you can see a large spread of dead animal flesh, especially cut so it does not look like the animal that it is. At least with the butchers they show the whole animal, so anyone going in knows that their bit of ham is in fact a sliced pig. In the supermarket this feeling is going.
2. Supermarkets love overpackaging. If you buy any fresh food from a supermarket you're almost guaranteed to get a free polystyrene tray, a piece of cling film and probably a plastic bag.
3) Supermarkets are generally out of town, meaning you have to have a car to reach them and obviously we all know the ecological damage the motor car causes. Also we must remember that companies are buying up green field sites. Vast tracts of land being bought by the likes of Tesco's and Safeway's, their supposed concern for the environment really shows a sham.
4) Supermarkets are putting the small trader out of business. It is impossible for the small trader to really compete with a supermarket as supermarkets get the food cheaper to start with. Thus by backing the supermarket chains we are destroying the local shops and the community spirit that they generate. On the continent, small shop holders have grouped together making it very difficult for the 'Big Boys' to wade in. In Totnes, Devon, the local people and permaculturalists got together and a campaign was launched to boycott the three supermarkets that had invaded their town. It is an indication how effective the campaign was that only one supermarket remains, the other two closing for economic reasons, the campaign continues! This form of community protectionism is successful and maintains a high street identity of the old tinker, tailor and candlestick maker.
With just these four examples (and there are many more), we can see supermarkets are guilty of environmental damage, creating unneeded waste, destroying the local communities AND hiding the fact that meat means murder. So next time you plan what targets to hit don't forget your local supermarket - whether you're ALF, Earth First! or any other associated cronies.
Note: a good way to trash any future supermarkets is to put salt in their concrete foundations, or icing sugar, this prevents the concrete from setting properly - so they have to tear it all down!
By RABBIX (Vegan Retribution Squad)
The Day They Drove Twyford Down!
The Battle for Twyford Down
For those who don't already know, Twyford Down is an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty just east of Winchester in Hampshire. With that designation, numerous SSSIs including the water meadows lining the Itchen valley south of the Down, and two significant scheduled ancient monuments - an Iron Age village and a bunch of medieval tracks, the Dongas. Twyford is also one of the last known habitats of the Chalk Blue butterfly and six different species of orchid. It was supposed to be one of the most protected natural sites in England. Indeed, it was placed in the trust of Winchester College by two old boys that bought it in the 1920s to preserve it from the city's urban sprawl.
The year's actions to protect the Dongas have been well covered. Since February 2nd many blockades and occupations of the work site have taken place, but still the DoT carried on regardless, determined to build their precious motorway. During the summer a camp was set up on the Dongas, where activists planned and based actions on the work site on the water meadows, which by then was being raped by the contractors. By the Autumn, the contractors were now looking towards the Dongas to begin their motorway monster. This is when the most oppressive and intimidating tactics against the campaign took place.
The Dongas tribe declared the site an autonomous zone in September, and began building fortifications to defend their land. Tarmac now got the contract to go forth with the cutting, and at this point a virtual siege began with paid security guards having their lookouts next to the Dongas.
The siege effectively ended on the 29th October, after sheer incompetence on the legal front. The previous Monday (26th October), the DoT successfully pressured the Estates Bursar of Winchester College into applying to the local court to evict the Dongas tribe. The summons was so ill-made that when presented to court that Thursday, the judge ordered the case adjourned until the 9th December, well past the end of the Cooper Lyons contract. With the tribes securely in place and no police cover, all the contractors could do was finish work on the water meadows and cut their losses.
The Main Contract Begins
Tarmac spent well after midnight on the 1st November moving into their depot in Compton, two miles south of the Down. The next morning forty contractors started work on four different sites along the south side of the Itchen Valley, the tribe were desperately outnumbered and somewhat intimidated. This was compounded by the fact that one of the security guards was suspected of an arson attack against the tipi watch post in the trench field a couple nights after Tarmac arrived. It took until the 4th November for EF! to react nationally. Sixty EF!ers marched across the Itchen valley and stopped work on all four sites, freaking out Roger Jackson so much that he lost control of his car and parked it halfway up a bank for the rest for the day.
The Dongas tribe continued to obstruct work on the North End site until around the 30th November. On this day, a Tarmac foreman, frustrated by continuous disruption, charged demonstrators with a JCB and one of the workers threatened a second arson attack on the camp. The campers took this second threat seriously and demanded that no further action be taken against the contractors. The tribe member that came closest to injury in the first attack was outraged at this decision and walked out of the camp, saying that by allowing themselves to be intimidated, the tribe had made themselves hostages of the good behaviour of others opposing the destruction of the down. The camp had vetoed ecotage around the area of the camp for months for fear of retaliation - by vetoing all action, the original reason for the establishment of the camp had been lost.
[MISSING IN ORIGINAL] ... day when Winchester College's summons was to be heard, the DoT felt they were in a strong enough position to invade the Dongas. Due to the lack of co-operation from Hampshire constabulary from the 27th October, the Home Office recommended Tarmac hire Group Four for the invasion instead. At dawn, a bulldozer spearheaded the assault, followed by one hundred Group Four thugs and all the workers at Twyford. Although the tribe had been supplied with a mobile phone to call for support, it had broken down and had not been repaired in the malaise preceding that day's events. Despite the paucity of communications, over fifty EF!ers had turned up by noon. The contractors put up a barbed wire compound around DoT land and started to remove turf within, but the tribe weren't taking this without a fight. Their attempts to invade the compound in the next two days were met by violence that hospitalised four of the demonstrators. To control the situation, a hundred cops were drafted in and they in turn made arrests when EF!ers attempted to stop the destruction of the woods at the bottom of the Dongas by occupying trees and the contractors' vehicles bulldozing them down on Friday, 11th December. Despite this unbelievably wanton destruction on the side of Tarmac, the tree-sitters saved a small stand of sycamores and this became their camp site as the tribe began clearing off Winchester College's land ready for the 14th December evictions.
On the Wednesday, Hampshire County Council objected to Tarmac's spurious claims that the two footpaths across the Dongas had been diverted. The 13th December was an unlucky day for the contractors. Armed with cuttings from the local paper about the destruction of the paths, fifty members of the Ramblers Association turned up at the Down and insisted on the right to walk one of the original tracks. Joined by the tribe and their supporters, the ramblers laid siege to the compound. After ripping the compound gate off its hinges, they barged through fifty Group Four guards that had linked arms across the breach, and proceeded to walk to the far side of the compound before the cops arrived to 'restore order'. Those biffed out of the compound are now taking the obstruction to court to rip it wide open.
A Tribe Member Describes Yellow Wednesday!
At the battle of the Dongas, we witnessed the lengths to which other human beings were prepared to go - to enable destruction of nature to continue.
We saw outnumbered protesters being assaulted, then arrested for assault. Activists sustained injuries that the police described as evidence of systematic beatings. When several arrests failed to enable machinery onto the dongas, arrests were forgotten as a tactic, and were replaced by brute force and scare tactics by 70 men in yellow jackets.
As the Earth defenders' persistence in the face of arm-twisting, head-butting, pressure-pointing etc became evident, 50 black hats waded in.
Instead of making arrests they took over the administration of violence. Two courageous earth sisters were rendered unconscious by wind pipe constriction and suffered torn neck and shoulder ligaments - one being kept in hospital for observation. Many others visited casualty, with barbed wire cuts, bruises, muscle strain and abrasions; charges are being brought.
Despite these tactics and heavy outnumbering, the tribe succeeded in keeping machinery out of the enclosed area of the Dongas. From dawn until dusk, throwing their all into the blockade, oblivious to personal injury, risking their lives in one final effort to protect that beautiful piece of land, as if the very planet depended on it!
Dawn the next day saw 19 people who were left fit for the protest, and 100 black hats joining the yellow jackets. After attempts at a gate blockade were repelled by a wall of black hats, physically and mentally numbed protesters wandered around the perimeter fence, watching the surreal massacre that followed. It was like watching a strange dream, by midday all the trees and scrub had been bulldozed, and the unturfed part of the ancient trackways had been reduced to a huge field of chalk.
The only obstruction left was three trees in the middle of the site occupied by the 'never say die' tree sitting club. Huge clouds of smoke billowed over the site from the burning pile of murdered trees, as the bulldozers continued their work. The battle was lost ... there was a lot of sad moments but our spirit was not broken. We gained insight and an overwhelming sense of unity. We also saw that other human beings were willing to go to any lengths to achieve their destructive aims ... we must be strong ... we must stand together ... the tribe lives on!
The Dongas are dead! Long live the Dongas tribe!
Many, particularly the media, who like a nice, neat story - will see the move on the Dongas camp as the closing act of the Twyford drama. They do not understand how precarious Tarmac's current position is. Prior to starting the Twyford contract, Tarmac lost millions when a contract collapsed in Swindon. That on top of the general damage the recession has done to them, forced Tarmac to beg for a £30 million handout from the government. They have put in a £24 million bid for the Twyford contract, a third below its proper value, meaning any delay will push them into penalty clauses. They will have to cut chalk through winter and attempt road building across the bottom of the Itchen valley, which used to be a complex of water meadows, meaning they are prone to turn into quagmires. This contract is set to run for two years and the political rationale for it - building infrastructure for European economic union - is looking more tenuous by the day as the Major administration wastes away. The battle for Twyford has not ended - it's beginning. With proper organisation and determination we can win this crunch battle with the road lobby. The implications of this victory will carry far beyond a small corner of Hampshire.
The events of 4th November show that we can stop work across Twyford using traditional tactics, given the numbers. If they think they can stop us with threats and violence, we've got to make damn sure they don't. Hunt sabs regularly get hassle but carry on regardless - learn from their example. They don't hesitate to document violence against them and bring prosecution.
Obstruction on site needs to be co-ordinated and supported. The number of days of work lost is what counts in defeating Tarmac. Consequently, it's better we have a sixty-strong demonstration two days a week than one demonstration twice that size - that's overkill. Those on site should make sure that they take down full details of works ongoing and subcontractors involved.
Consideration should also be given to those groups too far from Twyford, it shouldn't be confined to the Home Counties. To broaden out nationally, all Tarmac and associated subcontractors offices, depots and sites in the country should be targeted (a list can be obtained from South Downs EF!). As subcontractors addresses become known, they should join the hit list, not least because they are more vulnerable to persuasion than the larger companies raping the Down. Those who can't make it to Twyford on their day of the week must hit their local target instead. Solidarity actions are already ongoing against the DoT in London and ARC (who supply stone to Tarmac for Twyford), at Whatley Quarry in Somerset. Additional actions against the Dean of Bristol University who also happens to run Winchester College are already in the pipeline.
It's urgent that people explore whether Tarmac or any subcontractors use freepost addresses or freephone numbers - armchair activists across the country can cost them thousands, legally and from the comfort of their own homes. The possibility of phone, fax, and telex blockades should also be explored.
There is another string to our bow too. Tarmac have shown by their behaviour on the 9th December that they don't care for the law and only understand money. Well, we can beat them at their own game on that one, can't we? There is no point to fighting with one arm tied behind our back. After all, Earth First! only respects natural laws. Every leaflet you produce could contain the information needed for a cell to wreak £10,000s of havoc against the contractors and even put smaller subcontractors out of business. If you feel so inspired, study Ecodefence and the ALF publications doing the rounds, so you know how to do what it takes. As every channel for negotiation now seems closed, ultimately the only way Tarmac are going to be stopped is by being destroyed.
No Compromise in Defence of Planet Earth!
Surfers Against Sewage!
Many sports in Britain have an environmental wing, those within the activity who see their leisure time spoilt by polluters or a Government policy that doesn't come up to scratch. The anglers have for a long time fought court battles over river dumping of farm waste and surplus pesticides. But in the last two years there has been no group more successful in highlighting the dangers to our seas and coastlines than Surfers Against Sewage (SAS). Their own particular brand of direct action and well researched campaigns has taken the imagination of many and put the wind up the now privatised water industry.
SAS are not satisfied with the present level of sewage treatment and that Britain is still living in the Dark Ages. SAS says that effluent screened fails to match up to the EC Municipal Waste Water Directive, which rules that discharge serving a population of more than 10,000 people must receive screening, primary and secondary treatment, by the year 2000. This means that whether a beach fails the bathing tests or not, the outfalls will have to be treated. Prior to this, water companies were not planning to treat outfalls that did not cause a bathing beach failure. Many of Britain's sewage outfalls have trouble reaching primary treatment, if anything else SAS are also asking for Ultra Violet disinfection as well, so that viruses and bacteria are likewise eradicated.
One of the more prominent campaigns has been in St Ives, Cornwall, where a two mile outfall pipe is being built. The currents of the bay will bring the crap back onto the beaches, so of course the locals are worried about the scheme, especially as the outfall is catering for the whole region, from Penzance to St Ives. When the scheme was first proposed, South West Water (SWW) was planning little more than primary treatment. But through effective campaigning, SAS has managed to get secondary treatment, but still SWW haven't budged over UV. This is essential if one of Britain's most attractive bays is to be safe for both bathers and marine life.
SAS have suggested sound alternatives to existing sewage systems, and through this more district councils are beginning to ask their advice and look to countries like Sweden and Switzerland for working models.
What is so attractive about SAS is the way they combine humour with direct action, maybe that accounts for their impressive membership of 6000 plus in two years, not bad eh? Their known hit squad has come to the aid of local campaign groups all around the British isles, turning up with their assortment of inflatable Turds and Drums. Through this type of event, SAS has been able to gain respect from various bodies who might appear the last place where radicalism may shed light. From sailing clubs to diving clubs, all use the sea as recreation, so all will benefit by the measures the SAS are putting forth.
SAS offers a magic combination of well researched alternatives, good community outreach and organising, empowering locals to take action. And most of all gaining respect without sellout. The seaside always inspires fun and imagination, they are two of the main ingredients to keep weary activists fighting, and the only hope we have of saving our planet. To my mind, SAS contain both and for that reason they will continue to grow.
For more info contact: SAS, The Old Counthouse Warehouse, Wheal Kitty, St Agnes, Cornwall - They produce a monthly newsletter, "Pipeline".
The Wobblies are Back!
The Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) or Wobblies, as they are know, are again organising in the UK. Their brand of non-hierarchical structure and a belief in direct action is now essential to a weary working class that has seen its environment and civil rights whittled away. All we have on offer is a Labour Party that is nothing but light blue in policy and other Trot groups who want nothing but power and dictatorship. The IWW is a union organisation defending workers' rights on the shop floor as well as organising the defeat of the capitalist system.
As many EF!ers know, the link between Wobblies and EF! is very close in the US. Judi Bari who spent so much energy forging links between lumber workers and environmentalists was both a Wobbly and EF!er. Many of us who have organised EF! action over here have tried to gain support from those in the companies that we have targeted and in most cases it has been successful. If we really are to build a green society then we've got to have jobs. Only by putting forward sound alternatives will we get the backing of people who, though they may be concerned about the environment are also concerned about where the next sum of money to pay their bills is going to come from. For so long now the green movement has been a middle class body that has had nothing to do with ordinary folk who are struggling to survive, social issues are remote from its campaigning.
DO OR DIE will be having a regular Wobblies page with up to date news, views etc., so to those who are presently fighting an EC issue in the workplace etc., write in.
The IWW will be having its first conference in February for members and a public open meeting in the evening. It would be good if EF!ers could get along for that. There is also a workshop planned for the spring on community organising, skills that EF! desperately needs, more details in the next issue. Public meeting, 13th Feb., North Room, Conway Hall, Red Lion Sq., London WC1, begins at 7.30pm.
To find out more about joining the IWW, then contact F. Lee, 22 Vicarage Lane, Belgrave, Leicester.
Attacks on Bio-Technology in the Netherlands
On the weekend of July 27/28th 1991, three fields of genetically manipulated plants in the Netherlands were destroyed by a clandestine action group calling itself the Razende Rooiers (the Raging Diggers). In the town of Rilland. a field of genetically manipulated corn, owned by a subsidiary of the Dutch corporation Suikerunie, was razed while fields of genetically altered potatoes, from the Belgian firm Planet Genetic Systems, were destroyed in the towns of Wageninigen and Bant. These two last fields were operated by the Hettema corporation in conjunction with Prosperina BV. In total, the attacks caused tens of thousands of dollars of damage and set back the genetic tests by one to two years.
The Dutch press of course reacted furiously to the attacks. What's more, they made note of the fact that the Dutch autonomist paper NN had listed the addresses of corporate testing fields of genetically manipulated plants in its issue No. 89.
To explain their actions, the Razende Rooiers issued a lengthy communiqué which was likewise published in NN. The Razende Rooiers defend their militant approach in their communiqué.
"The destruction of a test field is designed to both start a discussion on the subject of biotechnology, as well as to offer a direct counter to pro-biotechnology propaganda in the form of sabotage. Resistance - in whatever form - to biotechnology is not only necessary, it is legitimate."
But the group not only defended their tactics in the communiqué, they go on to further discuss the theoretical necessities of offering concrete resistance to biotechnology.
Multinational corporations are controlling a greater and greater share of the worlds essential resources. At the same time, the uses of biotechnology reduce the multinational's dependence on local resources, thus opening the door to total artificial food production. Thus, local populations become increasingly dependent on the products of multi-nationals. But do consumers really want food production to be entirely artificial and thus, corporate owned? To ensure that the public does wish such a 'luxury', biotechnology multi-nationals spend millions of dollars annually on their public relations/propaganda budgets.
Just as with the Green Revolution, the use of biotechnology will bring great gains to the food production sector, yet it will also carry with it newer and bigger problems. Far from solving the world's hunger problem (which actually stems from unequal distribution and not from under-production), biotechnology will simply serve to further marginalise the Third World. The use of biotechnology will be destructive to the environment, as genetically manipulated fields require certain 'necessary' chemical applications (which the multi-nationals can themselves gladly supply). What's more, the proliferation of manipulated plants will result in a drastic loss of genetic diversity. Already, 50% of the world's population are fed by three plants: wheat, rice and corn. Biotechnology would drastically reduce varieties of these plants. Also, 93% of the present world's supply of genetic data is stored in the gene banks of Western corporations and scientific institutes.
What will result from this, of course, is a highly paternalistic and grossly racist attitude on the part of multi-nationals toward indigenous farming peoples. The use of biotechnology is racist against the Third World, because societies which had long since grown accustomed to reaping harvests with locally available labour and tried and trusted farming techniques will be cast off as primitive and inefficient. For in comes the 'benevolent' multi-national with its highly skilled staff of white western employees, its stocks of chemicals, and its immense reserves of capital... All of this will result in environmental, economic, political and cultural marginalisation of the Third World societies.
It is now important that the green movement begins to formulate a coherent critique of biotechnology and begins to work out an effective and concrete strategy to resist its implementation. As the events of the Netherlands have demonstrated, direct action has raised the issue to the general public and so put multi-nationals on the defensive. So if there are potential raging diggers out there, please get digging, and we'd love to hear from you.
Everything You Wanted to Know About Abseiling (But Were Afraid to Ask)
Abseiling/rapelling/sliding down a rope can be spectacular, is easy to learn, and is a useful skill for both banner hanging and direct action - if you are suspended on a rope 15m above the ground it can be a real problem for the police to get you down.
To start with, you will need a good rope, the ideal stuff costs £1 a metre, is 9mm in diameter and static, i.e. it doesn't stretch too much. This sort of rope is used by potholers - climbing rope is much more expensive. It is quite possible to make a harness, but unless you know exactly what you are doing you should procure a made one. This should be comprised of leg loops and a waist belt, so that your body weight is on your thighs - NOT around your waist. For abseiling from buildings a chest harness and helmet will improve safety.
There are many different types of abseiling devices around but they all work by creating friction against the rope so that you slide down in a controlled manner. A figure of eight is probably the cheapest device and it is easy to use too. You will also need some 'carabiners', clips for connecting ropes and your device to the harness etc, a spring gate (pear shaped) is best for the latter. Always use locking carabiners - people are dying regularly from snap links opening on them. Finally, a selection of slings is useful for anchoring the rope to the bridge, tree, etc.
It is obviously vital that the rope is securely attached at the top, it is good practice to always take two attachment points. The ideal way to do this is to tie a bowline on a blight (see diagram), then lock slings around two independent pieces of masonry etc. (each of which should be more than capable of taking your weight) with carabiners. Lock the abseil rope to the slings with the same crab. Adjust the knot so that the tension is equal on both slings (see diagram).
It is vitally important that the rope does not run over a sharp edge, the swing movement of the rope with an abseiler on it can cut through the rope. When most people first abseil, they usually find that physically getting over the edge and starting the descent is the hardest part. The best way of starting is to lock the device off (with a figure of eight holding the part of the rope that is below the device behind your back), step off the edge, get your weight on the rope, unlock and slide down. ALWAYS hold the line rope tightly, use the other hand for balance/holding device but make sure your fingers don't get caught.
Obviously you should practise these techniques from a tree or something, from a height where a complete loss of control will not cost you your life. Even better, get an experienced person to teach you. I'm quite prepared to teach any real eco-nutters, anarchos and wobblies etc etc. I quite enjoy teaching people, you could die if you try and teach yourself, so get in touch. You can contact me - Slipperly Steve, c/o North Downs EF!.
Guerilla Gardening or TERRAist Forestry
Whilst spending our energies stopping those who would rather see Britain as one complete ribbon of asphalt, let us not forget that we have the power to reclaim that which the developers have already defiled.
Always keep the seed of the mighty oak, sycamore and the yew with you and plant wherever they leave a space: on roundabouts, verges, parks (homogenised mockeries of nature).
Make up seed bombs, find varieties of wild flowers and herbs, mix the seeds with wallpaper paste (check that it doesn't contain a fungicide), place the mixture in small quantities in paper bags, and spread the seed where you will. From bicycles onto verges, from trains onto embankments - let us re-seed, re-seed.
Note: Always check that you use native species to your local bioregion. For info on obtaining seeds contact SDEF!
General Winstanley Junior (Elder ELF! of the tree spirits)
The Wessex ELF!in hit machines at Twyford Down over the winter solstice, causing thousands of pounds of damage. This naturally slowed down work considerably. Other hits were made on Tarmac construction sites around Southampton.
Whatley Quarry near Frome was visited by sprites who covered the gates in suitable red slogans. They also ventured onto the site where various activities were carried out.
The ALF in the Southeast has been busy with various attacks on hunters' and vivisectionists' homes. 'Shifting Sands', the Brighton café/restaurant that gained national notoriety for its exotic choice of sautéed squirrel-meat dish, closed on the 2nd of December after considerable public outrage and 'vandalism' by the ALF.
Meanwhile, just north of Southampton, a forestry commission research office working on "controlling" squirrel populations was firebombed destroying years of records, and two rooms in the process.
Tesco's have been finding re-introduced cockroaches in their stores all over the Southeast, as EF! shows solidarity with Golden Hill. Unfortunately, this has led to a number of their stores temporarily closing due to Health and Safety law.
The ELF! in Oxford caused havoc as they came out in support of Golden Hill's anti Tesco's campaign. Tesco's were opening a new store in Didcot, near Oxford. A few nights before opening day, bogus £10 free vouchers were pushed through local people's doors. So of course when Tesco's opened their doors on Monday, they suddenly found hundreds of locals lining up waving their vouchers in their hands, demanding satisfaction. Angry scenes erupted as customers pressed management to honour their word. This event caused really bad press for the company. This kind of forgery is a very effective idea and can really cause a lot of chaos and economic damage.
All around the country advertising billboards have been torn, burnt, ripped and sawn down to combat the consumerism of Xmas. In Brighton, 22 boards were 'neutralised' on the night of the 19th of December. BUGA UP (Billboard Utilising Graffitists Against Unhealthy Promotions), the EF! cell responsible, told DoD that they will continue to 'Resist the Enclosure of Art'.
The ALF in London has been having a smashing time - on the 16th of September ten butchers were bricked or glued and a couple of bookies and Boots premises were also done over. A month later (25th of October) five more butchers, a bookmaker and the home of Mr. McCallum, an abusive pet shop owner in the Harrow area were also hit.
The Elves have suggested that the 14th February be the next Earth Night, for all those lovers of the Earth. They do ask that this time there is really widespread damage, both from EF! and the ALF, or to use a nice phrase: "Set the night on fire!"
Class War held their Community Resistance conference in October. Speakers came from all over the country, from Manchester to the mining communities. All told stories of oppression and police violence, the way that the State is destroying our communities, alienating folk to what is rightfully theirs. The 5th November was declared a day of community action. EF! sent around posters inviting 'the little folk to strike back!', various hits have been jumping around the grapevine, but nothing definite as yet.
The ALF have put the European headquarters of Pitman Moore Ltd. (vivisectionists) under surveillance. They let the world know when they daubed the Edgeware home of its director, Mr. A Saunders, with red paint on the night of 8th October. In a subsequent communiqué, the ALF said they had "names, addresses and vehicle registration numbers of researchers, technicians, administration staff and cleaners ... of architects, building contractors, suppliers, waste disposal and couriers, and lots more." They warned that if those named continue to work for Pitman Moore, their property would be damaged or destroyed.
Six weeks later, on the 22nd November, the ALF raided the Rentokil headquarters in Felcourt, East Grinstead, Sussex. They liberated 40 mice used to test pesticides. Of the three test colonies freed, two were of wild mice and the third a control colony - by liberating the last colony, Toxicol's experiments have been wrecked. The ALF demanded that other mice held by Rentokil should be returned to the wild and threatened a national campaign of economic sabotage against the poisoners if experiments were resumed.
The wood campaign in defence of the world's forests has moved a step further, as incendiary devices have been discovered in three different B&Q stores around the country, Edinburgh, Liverpool, and Milton Keynes. Three individual EF! cells have claimed responsibility. MKEF! told DoD in a communiqué that, 'The campaign will continue until DIY stores around the country no longer stock unsustainable timber.' None of the incendiaries have as yet gone off but watch the news for further details.
On June 1st, the ALF liberated 29 cats from the University of Alberta Bio-Animal Kennels and did $10000 damage. After trawling through American ALF/Earth First! supporters, officers of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and the Edmonton Police Intelligence Unit arrested Darren Thurston and Grant Horwood.
Grant has now been given bail, but further charges have been piled on Darren - for torching trucks on 5th December 1991, 'defacing' three Fur Council of Canada billboards, torching a Hook Outdoor Advertising truck (they work for the Fur Council), on the 18th December 1991, and attempted arson to a Duellette Packers van on New Year's Day 1992. Darren has been refused bail three times so Darren should come to trial within the next six months - Source: EF! Journal USA.
Contact ALFSG Canada, PO Box 75029, Ritchie Post Office, Edmonton, Alberta T63 6K1
Darren Thurston, c/o Edmonton Remand Center, 9660-104 Avenue, Edmonton, Alberta T5H
To all prisoners inside this season. Greetings and never think you're forgotten.
Keep the spirit strong!
The Earth Liberation Front (ELF) distributed leaflets to North Oxford residents calling for a campaign of sabotage against a house building project of St John's College at the trap grounds near Port Meadow, Oxford. The leaflet stresses that the college plans to build 'luxury homes and a marina' would threaten wildlife on the Trap Grounds wetlands, a nature reserve area. The ELF!in urges residents to damage construction equipment on the building site saying that 'because sabotage isn't legal doesn't mean it's mindless violence or vandalism'. It gives the example of the Glebe Field site, where a victory was gained in 1989, using sabotage tactics. Of course the college hasn't officially made up their mind on the options for the site, but they were certainly upset at the tone of the leaflet. They are attempting to distance themselves by saying they are being confused with another company bidding for the land. The ELF!in say this is crap and that the college are just getting feared.
The 'Flicken' (cops) have described the leaflet as a serious offence, and that nobody should take the law into their own hands (who's going to protect our land then? Them?) They say that they have not come into contact with the ELF! before, well all the elves can reply is give it a few weeks and you'll wish you hadn't.
Bits and Bobs
Some Useful Things for Your Rucksack: Recommended Journals
The Ecologist - At £3 a copy it might sound a bit steep, but it speaks the truth. This is the journal that gave birth to our movement - it doesn't ponce about being environmentalist, it doesn't worry about it's image. To give you an indication of the contents of this marvellous publication I'll give you some of it's article titles from the last three issues: 'Tunnel Vision - The Lessons From Twyford Down','Ruining the Commons: Coastal Over-Fishing and Fishworkers Actions in South India' ,'Out of the Frying Pan: Chemical Weapons Incineration in the US', 'Development as Enclosure' and 'Power: The Central Issue'. Prominent EF!ers like John Seed are associate editors.
Green Revolution - The paper of the Green Libertarian left, does have a strong Marxist angle, but thank god not a dogmatic one. The latest issue has a strong emphasis on women and revolution, a good read. Green Revolution have organised EF! type action in Bristol and were active in the Golden Hill campaign. The paper pushes a very strong social angle, which is essential for the movement. It has done some good EF! articles, actually defining where the movement comes from. At times giving more discussion to it than some of EF!'s own productions.
For more info, on either the magazine or the Bristol group contact:
Green Revolution, P.O. Box 845, Bristol, BS99 5HQ
Green Anarchist - No real comment apart from that without it the movement would be boring. Some good articles in the last issue which is devoted to fighting Fascism. GA also provide a good update on EF!/ELF and ALF actions.
Contact: GA, Box ZZ, 111 Magdalen Road, Oxford.
Do or Die - This mag is produced by various EF! groups with the intention of circulating ideas that we all desperately need. The mag will come out every two months, with an Action Update in between.
We suggest a subscription or £5 for the year. All monies to Hastings EF!
Articles and Communiques for March DoD should be received by the 10th Feb. The Action Update is 20th January. Send DoD copy to Mid Somerset EF!, and A.U copy to Hastings EF!
EF! desperately needs people with resources and training they can offer. We need to hear from you whatever skills you have. Do you scuba-dive? Are you in the publishing business? Can you paraglide, abseil, own a micro light, a balloon? Basically anything that you think EF! may find useful.
Sorry if this mag is in a bit of a state, it was all rushed towards the end as the layout "staff" found themselves lying under bulldozers at Twyford - more info in the next issue. We shall be able to produce it properly next time. Hope you buy Do or Die again. Love and kryptoes,
Lots of love the Ent Worshippers!
If you are interested in taking part in a North Wales EF! Roadshow at Easter, contact SDEF!
Be a Distributor
If you want to spread the word you can do it in two ways. One, if you've got access to cheap photocopying, print up copies of this yourself - we don't mind, we are not capitalists Or you can order DoD (5 copies upwards) from SDEF! at 20p each.