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Soliparty für Abolishing the Borders From Below
Freitag, 22. Apr 2005, im :: EKH, Wielandgasse 2-4, 1100 Wien (U1 Keplerplatz)
:: Flyer (.jpg)

20:00 Uhr: Infoladen 10 Kino: "borderline south-east-europe" (grenzfall südosteuropa), "a nearly one hour documentation about borders, eu-enlargement, roma - from the perspective of the people, we met on our journey." (:: AK Kraak, 60 min dt/engl)

21:00 Uhr: Präsentation der Zeitschrift Abolishing the Borders from Below

22:00 Uhr Konzert mit:
Sangre De cristo (stop and go core, SK)
Ad Acta (crust, SK)
Nie Geprobt (all grrrl punk rock, Wien)
Texte zur Rubrik:

[ 19. Apr 2005 ]

Abolishing the Borders from Below, part 2

threw the wall

The 2nd part of the short history of Abolishing the Borders from Below (ABB) explains the current situation of the anarchist collective from Berlin and their magazine - an anarchist courier from Eastern Europe.


Basically, winter 2004 was for the ABB crew a really cold one... some of the problems that were affecting the collective for a long time, arrived at a "breaking point" the collective at that moment found itself drastically reduced in numbers and facing a kind of existential crisis. Several questions were raised with a strong impact among the few people left in the project: how did we get to this point, how are we going to go forward? The people from the old collective tried to question themselves deeply, in order to not let the project come to a certain death, since everyone was still convinced of the importance of its existence. Some meetings started slowly to take place again, where participants began to reflect on the past 3 years of activity, and also - what was felt as a really necessary thing - to let a good and healthy self-criticism come out: the people felt this was really necessary to continue the project.

One of the very first topics approached was definitely how to get more people involved in the project, since a lot of people in the last years left the collective for very different reasons; we started to ask some people who were already collaborating, on different levels with the collective, if they would have liked to engage themselves on a deeper level of participation... it looked like that this trick functioned, and the number of the collectives members doubled itself! With new energy, we could start to talk about ourselves...

We at first discussed how did the collective found itself in this position in order to avoid mistakes for the future and learn from our mistakes of the past, a method which we feel as a constitutive part of our anarchist praxis... major problems that were faced were:

  • a drastic reduction of the collective numbers;
  • a consequent overwork and over-responsibility for the people left, which leaded to a bad and problematic division of the work;
  • a related power dynamic within the collective, since some people took more responsibility for many things and it was seen that this procedure increased consequently the level of power between people "who do too much" and people "who do too little", this phenomenon, involving responsibilities from both sides, also raised the level of stress for some people;
  • the consequent, slow disappearance of some of the anarchist values that were animating the spirit of collective;
  • problems, of course...
  • the problem of male domination within the collective also arose since at least the last year.

We felt it absolutely necessary to approach each of these correlated themes during the meeting time, which we set up again for every week. Discussions took place, with good self-criticism but also with a good and positive look to the future, approaching the different problems, in a meeting structure where everyone was invited to express his/her own points...
Slowly the new ideas started to come out; a new and more effective organizational structure of the meetings themselves was set up, and the machine started somehow to work again...
In particular, one of the things to note was the importance of the concept of tasks sharing.
In the ongoing discussion about the next issue of the newspaper, also came a strong need for wider task sharing, in order to avoid repeating the above-mentioned difficulties.

What basically we felt was really necessary in our collective, is the building, day by day, of a deep and strong sense of solidarity and mutual support, so as to make possible the development of our own project on these values, as well build for the wider libertarian and anarchist community for which we are aiming.

In the meanwhile, discussions on other related themes are taking place:
just to mention, we are slowly revitalizing our anarchist east European oriented library, in our office in Berlin, as well as having deep talks about our engagement as a collective in the ongoing struggles here and around; the participation in the anarchist Balkan bookfair in Zagreb; some more theoretical discussions within the collective about anarchism and other topics also, we were able to set up, together with other radical groups here in Berlin, a soliparty for ourselves and other projects, because unfortunately the problem of finance is for us, like for almost every other anarchist group around, always more than present! Also in this direction, we are trying to find out, besides the usual soliparties, (which anyway remain one the most loved ways), how to get some money, for us and for projects we would like to solidarise with, of course in ways that conform to our anarchist principles.
Last but not least, we finally decided the date for the publication of the next, long awaited, issue of the newspaper... 1st of June 2005.

So, it looks like the project is more than alive at the moment, the morale is high, we try to look forward and stay strong on our permanent and fluid process of construction, and we d like to say that we are totally happy that the importance of this small project is felt, not just by us, but also by the people around, here and in the world, who have always contributed, now and in the past (and hopefully in the future), to the life of it: financial support, discussions, actions, solidarity, the spreading of mutual support and anarchist ideas, the building of libertarian communities, each of these forms is, for us, felt as an absolutely important contribution to our/your projects and our/your struggles.

It s for us absolutely necessary also to mention again, that the existence of our courier is mostly made possible thanks to the great job of our correspondent team from eastern Europe, who are the people who actually do the most work concerning the writing of reports and of personal analysis about the ongoing struggles taking place over there. We don ™t want that people reading our courier would forget about them.

Thanks to all of you who attended this event (soliparty on 22nd of April 2005), and special thanks to people from EKH who made it possible and with whom we solidarise completely against the ongoing eviction menace... fight back!

As a last point. some of you could be curious as to why we are silent in this text about the issue of the specific situation of ABB as the almost exclusively MIGRANT political group. The answer is simple: while there definitely exist some objective boundaries and "anormalities" connected to our foreign status and the wide variety of our origins that affect our activities, we are actually trying to NOT ALLOW these difficulties to handicap us and our work. It is a kind of automatic and consequent collective-refusal of taking positions of "Ausländern" and the role of "Migrants" in the society we live in, which means for us no more and no less than just the daily practice of what we have written on our banner: