All posts by The Final Straw Radio

The Final Straw Radio is a terrestrial radio show and podcast started in 2009 featuring information by, for and about anarchists and other anti-authoritarians. The show airs weekly on Sundays from 2-3pm EST out of Asheville, NC, USA.

Autonomous Northern California Fires Relief Efforts

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I’d like to share a Final Straw Radio mini-episode, a conversation with Emilio of the currently unofficial Sonoma County IWW, or Industrial Workers of the World. This chapter doesn’t yet have an official charter but they were in the process or organizing one when the fires in Northern California started last week and have used this as a platform for fund-raising and trying to work out solidarity relief in Santa Rosa, the seat of Sonoma County. For this chat, Emilio and I talk about the weather patterns of northern coastal California, relief efforts by the Red Cross and other NGO’s around shelter and care distribution, what their nascent chapter of the IWW is trying to do and related topics. To find more about their chapter, you can go onto fedbook and stay tuned in the conversation for their relief phone number, a few material needs you can provide from a distance and ways to get involved if you’re in the area.

B(A)D News # 5 (October 2017)

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introduction of the program

news from 98fm (athens)
3:47,5 – 12:24,5

syriza changes Law
attack on the french institute of athens
harm of environment / shipowner and gold mining
law about the gender issue
15 years of prison in cause of self-defence
attack against goethe intitut of athens
several actions of a anarchist group

A-Radio Berlin (berlin, de)
12:25,0-23:18,0

a collage about the Anarchist Days 2017 in Dresden

Radio Fragmata (thessaloniki, greece)
24:17,0 – 31:30,0

3 cases , and the justice system of greece

the case of marios zervas radio kurruf
the case of panagiotis z.
and the case of a 22 year old girl who killed her rapist

105fm * (mytilini/ lesvos island, Aegean Sea, greece)
31:30,5 — 31:30,0

News from Mytilini (lesvos island) and beyond-

Refugees
Transgender issue
*case of a rapist

The Final Straw (north carolina, usa)
36:36,5 – 48:02,0

*Interview about the case of Herman Bell
(- who is a beloved organizer and family member, a political prisoner clocking 44 years behind bars, and former member of the black panther party. they
spoke to his daughter in law, kihana Ross, about recent developments in
his case.)

bilda kedjor (sweden)
50:12,5 – 53:18,5

news from Sweden about the antifascist mobilisation
against the nazi demo that happened 30.09 in goetheborg

Radio Kurruf * (temuco, chile)
53:24,0 – 58:59,0

current struggle of political Mapuche prisoners in chile

Dissident Island Radio (london, uk)
59:00,0 – 1:08:08,0

update DSEI arms fair week of action.
a portion of a debate on whether the russian revolution should be celerated.

Frequenz-A (hamburg, de)
1:09:07,0 – 1:14:28,0

*update about the repression and solidarity related to the protest against g20 in hamburg

(episode in total 1:14:44)

Support Herman Bell & a discussion on the Signal App

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For a 59 minute long, radio clean version for syndication purposes, please visit the archive.org collection.

Support Herman Bell

First this week, we had the opportunity to speak with Dr Kihana Mariah Ross, who is the daughter in law of Herman Bell, a former member of the Black Panther Party and a political prisoner who is currently clocking 44 years behind bars. We will speak about recent developments in his case, plus some historical context, and actionable items moving forward.

To learn more about Herman Bell and to read some of his writings, you can visit freehermanbell.org. To send him a card – and be aware that his 70th birthday is on January 14th and his upcoming parole hearing is in February 2018 – you can write to him at

Herman Bell 79 C 0262
Shawangunk CF
P.O. Box 700
Wallkill, NY 12589-0700

How Best to use Signal?

In the second segment of today’s episode, we’ll air another conversation with William Budington, a digital security expert and trainer about the Signal end-to-end text encryption app for smart phones and desktops. Signal, produced by WhisperSys, is an easy to use, free means for folks to avoid one type of surveillance in their day to day communication. The ubiquitous, normalized use of encryption shields the purpose of the use, obscuring whether the practice is to shield illegal activity or not. In the conversation we talk about the human failure side of communication, as well as the informational leakage possibilities of the devices we use to engage Signal app. If you really enjoy the pie-baking/Betty Crocker metaphor, don’t despair, it doesn’t end with this segment. Check out more on this topic in our occasional series, Error-451.

Stay tuned soon for a conversation with William about burner phones and more. If you have a topic about digital security, devices and programs, surveillance or related topics, leave us a suggestion at thefinalstrawradio@riseup.net ! If you want our pgp key, check our website.

Editorial

Now, it’s my turn for a brief editorial, dear listeners. This is Bursts. I grew up in a part of so-called California known as Sonoma County, lands stolen from the Pomo and the Miwok peoples first by the Spanish, then by Mexico and Russia and then the U.S. I lived there from the mid-1980’s through 2009 and consider it my home in a way I could no other place. The rolling hills, the foggy mornings, the Coastal Live Oak groves, the nasty but 100 year old Eucalyptis groves, the early evening sky that turns a goldish orange into purple, the Manzanita, the people, the ocean breeze coming out from Bodega. These are things that I remember fondly from the deeply damaged yet still beautiful biome I called home for most (and definitely the more formative years) of my life.

This has been a year for spectacular disasters around this hemisphere, with a record 10th hurricane now appearing in the Carribean and southern U.S., 2 major earthquakes rocking Mexico and now the fires in Northern and Southern California. The fires in the north, which I’ve been paying more attention to because they QUITE literally bring home to me a sense of devastation I still haven’t been able to digest from this distance, have been whipped up by winds, a seasonal dryness out of the ordinary and fed by the aftermath of a wet winter that created a ton of easy-to-burn fuels. California has long been racked by fires, but never this many deaths and never have they consumed large parts of cities as they have with Santa Rosa. Thousands of homes have been turned to ash, monuments standing over a hundred years are cinders, human and non-human animals have been killed, damaged and displaced. California is yet another part of the world feeling the first hand effects of anthropogenic climate change, after years of over-taxing it’s water levels with large scale and animal and food agriculture, it’s manicured industrial lawns, the barely regulated weed industry booming, the building of human settlements in the middle of deserts and the idea promoted by high levels of industry and state that as the 6th largest economy in the world it could buy itself climate chaos. Day by day, year by year, this is proven more and more a delusion. But I digress.

I’d like to give a shout out to the brave folks doing search and rescue in my home away from home, the neighbors who look out for each other, that roused each other from sleep to escape the fire storms, who shelter and feed each other. Also to the fire professionals who are working to fight back the fires. An element of this that is under reported, of course, is the fact that over a thousand prisoners of the state of California and it’s included counties, are putting their lives on the line for $1 to $2.56 a day to train and then fight these blazes. That can be compared to the $31.85 an hour of the median hourly wage for non-inmate firefighters. I would like to bring this up because as the climate becomes more chaotic and the ever-tighter squeeze of austerity capitalism turns further and further away from more sustainable and stable incomes like unionized firefighters this continues a nasty trend.

Putting prisoners on the fire lines to fight the blazes, while more deadly for them than other modes of work, arguably offers them a potentially more meaningful and lucrative engagement with community service. This also fuels the profit motive of governments bent on incarcerating mostly poor communities of color, often people with chemical dependencies and neuro-divergencies the state can’t be bothered to treat but to stick them in a concrete and steel cage. More prisoners means more low-pay and expendable firefighters who’s crime was to be born the wrong color or class in the age of mass incarceration. I don’t bring this up to denigrate those risking themselves to save lives and homes, whether a prisoner or not, but to point out that this is not how a community organizes itself for it’s members, this is the logic of capital and thus streams value to the top of the pyramid.

My heart goes out to those who suffer at the hands of these fires. Let’s fight for futures where we are better prepared, where we don’t employ slave labor to fight them, and everyone has what they need to live in true community, which means true accountability to the impact of our survival on the non-human environment with which we share this awesome world.

If you’d like to help by sending some money to autonomous organizing for relief in Sonoma County, consider visiting https://generosity.com/emergencies-fundraising/northbay-iww-fire-relief-fund

Playlist

Kevin Tucker on Anarcho-Primitivism (pt2)

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For a 59 minute long, radio clean version for syndication purposes, please visit the archive.org collection.

Interview

This week we air the second half of Bursts conversation with Kevin Tucker. Kevin is an anarcho-primitivist, author and publisher of Black & Green Review. This week we air Kevin’s views about tribal-bro-ism in the white supremacist and macho approach to historical misappropriation, upcoming issues of the journal Black & Green Review, Collapse, Rewilding versus Revolution and more. For a free look at some of Kevin’s writings, visit theanarchistlibrary.org, and to check out his publishing project, journals and books you can visit blackandgreenpress.org

For part one of Bursts’ conversation with Kevin, you can visit our noblogs site!

Related Audios

If you found this conversation interesting, you may enjoy the interviews Bursts conducted with two other anarcho-primitivists on the show over the years. Check out his chats with Layla Abdel-Rahim pt 1 (Layla begins about 40 minutes in) & pt 2 as relates to her philosophy and her book “Wild Children – Domesticated Dreams” and with John Zerzan on the subject of anti-civilization anarchism more widely.

Announcements

“White Lives Matter” rally in Shelbyville TN, October 28th, Editorial

Online platform The Tennseean has recently been reporting of several white nationalist rallies (called White Lives Matter rallies) that are planned for October 28th in Shelbyville and Murfreesboro TN among perhaps one other town. These spots were chosen by the event organizers, most visibly Brad Griffin, who writes under the alias Hunter Wallace on the blog Occidental Dissent, because of the state’s Republican and red status coupled with a mistrust of law enforcement in what they’re calling “more Democratic towns”. According to a statement that they released on Saturday, The National Socialist Movement, a pro-white organization based out of Detroit, MI, said the group’s “street action” would be broadening its scope to include other small TN towns in the vicinity of Nashville. This same statement claims participation by other groups such as League of the South and the Traditionalist Workers Party. It’s not known how many people will be attending at this time, though the organizers are predictably posturing that it will be a well attended event. The stated purpose of these events is to protest the changing demographic of middle TN, silence from the White House regarding a fatal church shooting in Antioch last month (in which the perpetrator started his early life in Sudan but was a US citizen) and probably some other white nationalist nonsense as well.

According to interviews posted a couple of days ago by WCVS, residents of both Shelbyville and Murfreesboro are both angered at this groups’ presence and confused about why their hometown was chosen. Many statements include disgust at the very message of white nationalism and white lives matter. It’s believed by residents that these groups are outside agitators who are descending on them to disrupt their town and their already scheduled community events, and by doing so are making implicit assumptions about their way of life and of thinking.

All the organizing information is attempting to draw a clear link between these events and the by now internationally famous events in Charlottesville Virginia of August 12 this year, even though that day was a clear loss for those on the side of the alt right. Despite claims, also by the organizers, that the event “will not be violent”, police are gearing up in those cities to prepare for the rallies. Just last night (October 7th), in that same city of Cville, Richard Spencer showed his face and formed a 30 strong, 10 minute long torch march around the doomed Lee Monument (scheduled for removal) in Emancipation Park, the site of their previous defeat. Predictably, police were heavy allies to the Nazis and escorted them away under police protection. If you are disgusted by this, you can call the folks at the CPD and ask them why they’re still helping Neo Nazis do their thing. They can be reached at 434-970-3280. In this post Cville landscape of frenzied and often disorganized white nationalist activity, it is perhaps important to keep these things in our sights and oppose them as best we can.

The exact location of the event has not yet been released, but it might be reasonable to assume that the information will be posted on Griffin’s blog a day or two beforehand. For more information about developments, keep eyes on your favorite anarchist and antifascist news sources!

You can see here the article from which much of this information was pulled.

Playlist

Kevin Tucker on Anarcho-Primitivism (pt1)

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Airs on WSFM-LP 103.3 in Asheville / streaming at AshevilleFM from 3am EST on October 2nd through October 7th and podcasting on libsyn.com.

For a 59 minute long, radio clean version for syndication purposes, please visit the archive.org collection.

Interview

This week Bursts spoke with Kevin Tucker, anarcho-primitivist, author and publisher of Black & Green Review. We had a rather lengthy conversation, so we’ve split the conversation up. This is the first portion, in which Kevin talks about anarcho-primitivism, domestication, civilization, anthropology and the scientific method, human development, agriculture and more.

In the future episode you can hear his views about tribal-bro-ism in the white supremacist approach to historical misappropriation, upcoming issues of Black & Green Review, Collapse, Rewilding versus Revolution and more. For a free look at some of Kevin’s writings, visit theanarchistlibrary.org, and to check out his publishing project, journals and books you can visit blackandgreenpress.org

Other Audio

Today’s episode premiers October 1st, which is the date of the #CatalanReferendum for independence in that northern region within the bounds of Spain. In the leadup, the Spanish government has violently repressed the efforts to hold this election and the news we’re seeing today is no different. If you’d like to hear a chat I had earlier this week with an English-speaking anarchist who has long resided in Catalunya about Catalan nationalism, autonomy, cultural differences between that region and central Spain, some history and some forecasts of where this referendum and repression may go (always critical of the State and Capital), check out our downloadable podcast.

Also, keep an ear out for an upcoming series of podcast miniepisode ‘s featuring William Budington and Bursts chatting about digital security and safer practices with our devices. We’ve got a couple coming out about practices with Burner Phones and strengths and weaknesses of wrangling with the Signal app for end to end encrypted texts from Open Whisper Systems.

Announcements

Defend J20: Call in Day for US Attorney Liu

This Monday October 2nd is the last day for a concerted call in effort to urge the US Attorney to drop the charges against the J20 defendants.

You can join the defend j20 crew in welcoming brand new US Attorney Liu to office with a flood of phone calls demanding that the J20 charges be dropped! Sign up at call.usattorneyliu.org to reserve your time slot. The fine folks there will send you an email with more details and a suggested call script. Her number is 202-252-7566, or if you cannot call in you can send a letter to the Judiciary Center Building, 555 Fourth Street, NW, Washington, DC 20530.

October 19th Call for Solidarity

There has been a formal call for solidarity from antifascists around the south to oppose an appearance by the by now internationally infamous white supremacist Batman villan Richard Spencer. It has been officially confirmed that this piece of white bread is going to be spewing pseudo intellectual and only marginally intelligible xenophobic racism at University of Florida in Gainesville on October 19th, which is in just over 2 and a half weeks from now.

You can see the entire formal call for solidarity, plus some important context that includes recent history and what to be prepared for, at It’s Going Down.

You can get in touch if you want to endorse this call and are planning on being there in solidarity by emailing oct19endorse@riseup.net

Support Herman Bell!

“Black Panther Party political prisoner Herman Bell was viciously assaulted by guards at Great Meadow Correctional Facility (Comstock) on September 5, 2017. While being “escorted” by a guard back to his housing unit, a guard struck Herman, age 69, in the face causing his glasses to drop to the floor. He pushed Herman against the wall, Herman stumbled and fell to the ground. The guard then continued viciously hitting and kicking Herman. Very soon about 5 other guards arrived and joined in the violent attack, hitting and kicking Herman all over his body.

Herman Bell has now been charged with “assault on staff.” Defying common sense, they allege that Herman, for no apparent reason, slapped the guard escorting him. He did this, they claim, in a location out of the view of all inmates but in the presence of other guards. He is now in the Special Housing Unit (box) at Five Points Correctional Facility where he was transferred after the incident.

Herman Bell has not had a disciplinary violation in over 20 years. He had been scheduled to begin a three day family visit with his wife a few days after the incident, their first such visit in over 2 1/2 years. In addition he is to appear before the parole board, for the 8th time, in February 2018.

At this time, we are encouraging everyone to take the time to write to Herman or send him a get-well card, so that the authorities know we are concerned for Herman. Further requests for actions of support will be posted soon.

His new address is:
Herman Bell 79 C 0262
Five Points CF
6600 State Route 96
Caller Box 119
Romulus, N.Y. 14541

Friends and family are also encouraging supporters to email Commissioner Anthony Annucci, to let him know that folks are keeping tabs on Mr. Bell’s situation. Commissioner Annucci’s email address is: Anthony.Annucci@doccs.ny.gov

You can see a sample letter and a bunch more information at this article here: Political Prisoner Herman Bell Assaulted by Guards

Comrade Malik Washington

Comrade Malik, a tireless writer and organizer who’s been very active in exposing unsafe conditions at the Eastham Unit in Texas, is facing retaliation from prison staff, and is asking supporters to email the Texas Ombudsman to prevent any further action being taken against him. You can find out more information at Action Needed to Fight Retaliation at the Eastham Unit!

Support Shaka Shakur and Angaza Bahar

At the Wabash Valley Correctional Institute in Indiana, Shaka Shakur, who is a political prisoner, defended himself against mistreatment by guards, and another, Angaza Iman Bahar (Jimmy Jones), who helped alert the outside world to the situation, are both facing disciplinary charges.

Wabash Valley Correctional has been getting a reputation for “a culture of sadism [in which] guards take pride and find humor in their mistreatment of inmates, especially Black and New Afrikan inmates whom they expose to every kind of abuse and humiliation.” IDOC Watch are asking people to call in so the prison knows that they both have outside support.

It is urgent that the security of Shaka Shakur and Angaza Bahar be ensured, but the only way is through mass pressure from the outside. IDOC Watch asks that people call Wabash Valley warden Richard Brown at 812-398-5050 and IDOC Commissioner Robert E. Carter Jr. at 317-232-5711. You can also email IDOC officials at rcarter@idoc.in.gov, rbrown@idoc.in.gov, mauxier@idoc.in.gov, jbasinger@idoc.in.gov, and lsalinas@idoc.in.gov

You can see the entire call, which includes helpful context and analysis, and sample letters and emails at incarceratedworkers.org.

Playlist

The Catalan Referendum: An Anarchist Perspective

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This segment is a conversation Bursts had on Monday, September 25th with an Anglophone anarchist who has lived in Catalunya, within the Spanish borders, for some years now. This conversation comes as there is an intense escalation in the region with government officials from the semi-autonomous region of Catalunya declaring that Sunday, October 1st there will be a public and binding referendum on Catalan independence from the Spanish state. On the other side of the escalation has been the declaration of the referendum illegal by the central government in Madrid, intervention by militarized national police against print shops suspected of printing ballots and political activists and politicians in the region who may engage in carrying out the referendum. Barcelona has seen frequent crowds surround the intervening national police, the local police are sitting on the fence, the Spanish military is on stand-by and tensions are rising.

For the hour, we chat about about the machinations of government officials on both sides, electoral Leftist reactions in the region, pressure from the E.U. & banks for de-escalation, the scrambling of the Catalan bourgeoisie, anarchist engagements or lack there of and what possible outcomes of this may be.

The old man singing at the beginning and end of this episode is Chicho Sanchez Ferlosio, a Barcelona-based anarchist singer-songwriter who recorded this song “Malditos Elecciones” late in his life, for the documentary “Buenaventura Durruti, anarquista.”

Coalition for Immokalee Workers on #IrmaRelief and Jalil Muntaqim (p2)

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Airs on WSFM-LP 103.3 in Asheville / streaming at AshevilleFM from 3am EST on September 25th through October 1st and podcasting on libsyn.com.

For a 59 minute long, radio clean version for syndication purposes, please visit the archive.org collection.

Coalition for Immokalee Workers

Today we are airing an interview conducted with Lupe Gonzalo of the Coalition of Immokalee Workers in Immokalee, Florida. This is  is a worker-based human rights organization which seeks to promote awareness of social responsibility, human trafficking, and gender-based violence at work and in corporations, seeking to boost the voices of some of the more marginalized workers in the US. We talk about the ciw, how it got started, and about hurricane relief after Hurricane Irma. We also touch on some political differences and points of unity with anarchism. This interview was conducted in translation from Spanish into English, with Patricia of the Alliance for Fair Food doing translation. If anyone would like the full interview just in Spanish, please write to us and we will provide that audio!

If you would like to learn more about the Coalition of Imokalee Workers, and to donate to hurricane relief efforts, you can visit their online fundraising page

For more on this group, including how to get onto their email list, information on their radio station Radio Conciencia or La Tuya, and their upcoming visit to UNC Chapel Hill, you can visit ciw-online.org If you would like to see just one of the many accounts of anarchist accompliship and solidarity with the CIW you can go to It’s Going Down and search “Autonomy in Tampa, Solidarity in Immokalee: Love Letter to the Future

Further links for reading and solidarity:

Blog Concerning Hurricane Irma relief
Alliance for Fair Food’s report on the state of the town of Immokalee
CIW Blog post about Hurricane Irma relief in Labelle, FL

CKUT’s Prison Radio with Jalil Muntaquim

Then comes part two of Prison Radio’s interview with Jalil Muntaquim, who is former member of the Black Panther party and the Black Liberation Army and is one of the longest held political prisoners in the world. While incarcerated, Jalil has become a father, grandfather and great-grandfather. Jalil graduated with a BS in Psychology and a BA in Sociology in 1994. He has written several books, arguably most notable being We Are Our Own Liberators, his most recent being a book of poems entitled Exiting the Prism.

More from CKUT out of Montreal can be found here!

Announcements

Duke Energy Protest & NCUC Public Comment Period

In Asheville on Wednesday, there’ll be a protest against Duke Energy, which proposed to the NC Utilities Commission to raise electricity rates 15%, raising $200 million a year to pay for the cleanup costs of their coal ash dumps and build new infrastructure to keep us dependent on ecocidal fossil fuels. NCUC is holding a public hearing from 7-10pm at the downtown courthouse in Asheville, with a rally starting at 5pm and marching towards the courthouse. You can find a fedbook event for a training to help you get more comfortable with presenting during public comment period.

“Eyewitness to Charlottesville” at UNCA

Also in Asheville this Wednesday, Sept 28th at UNCA here in Asheville, there’ll be a presentation from 6-8pm. Location to be determined, but you can find more at fedbook by searching for “Eyewitness to Charlottesville.” The presenters are from the (shudder) International Socialist Organization (ISO) from Raleigh, a UNCA student and member of the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA), and members of the Carolina Mountain John Brown Gun Club, formerly Redneck Revolt.

Trouble #6 at Firestorm

BRABC will be airing Trouble #6 on Friday the 29th at 7:30pm.  This episode of the short-documentary series from sub.Media is focusing on Counter-Insurgency.  The showing is free and will be followed by a discussion with questions crafted by sub.Media on the topic.  The flyer for the event can be found here.

FBI visits more activists in WNC

From BRABC:

On September 8, 2017, an FBI agent attempted to visit a comrade in western North Carolina. They visited a house, and the person there stepped outside to talk to the agent, who repeatedly asked if the comrade in question lived there. The person at the house did not engage with those questions, and instead insisted on a card from the agent that a lawyer could call later. The agent said it was regarding a case being handled by another office.

This comes at a time when Anarchists have been standing up to a grand jury and other FBI harassment across the state of North Carolina. The person who the FBI agent was seeking secured legal representation. On September 13, 2017, their lawyer called a number the agent wrote down, and the FBI specified that they were actually looking to speak with the person’s child, a minor. The FBI said that they were seeking the original person because a legal guardian had to be present for the agent to talk to the minor. During that call the agent stated she wanted to ask about graffiti on a car related to a case being investigated by the FBI Field Office in Raleigh, NC. The minor in question has now secured legal representation. Nobody above is speaking to the FBI.

We cannot just hope that harassment like this stops. Get educated on how to protect yourself if the FBI shows up. If you are approached by the FBI, refuse to answer their questions. Know your rights! Please read If An Agent Knocks for more information. We cannot let them intimidate us and raise fear and distrust.

If An Agent Knocks: https://ccrjustice.org/if-agent-knocks-booklet

UNCA Radical Rush and Supporters of Comrade Malik Washington

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For a 59 minute long, radio clean version for syndication purposes, please visit the archive.org collection.

Interviews

UNCA Radical Rush

In this two parter episode, firstly we chatted with Beck, a University of North Carolina Asheville student and fellow organizer this year’s Radical Rush Week, which builds off of the model of the UNControllables of UNC and their Disorientation. The hope of the event is to introduce opportunities to spark conversations and relationships to radical organizing initiatives on campus and introduce new students to local projects around the Asheville area. You can find more about this on fedbook by visiting “UNCA Radical Rush”, and find flyers for the week of events at UNCA and around the community including:
Tuesday, the 19th Radical Reflections of Students Past;
Wednesday, the 20th Tranzmission Prison Project & Asheville Prison Books Program packaging event;
Thursday, the 21st Sex, Drugs & Self Defense;
Friday, the 22nd Marathon of TROUBLE mini-documentaries;
Saturday, the 23rd Herbalism as a Tool for Resiliency and Resistance;
Saturday night DACA Solidarity Benefit Show

Supporters of Comrade Malik Washington

Secondly, our comrade and sometimes contributor Disembodied Voice shares several short interviews with members of politicized prisoner Keith Malik Washington’s support team.

Comrade Malik, as he is known to his friends and supporters, is currently in solitary confinement in Texas at Eastham Unit, where he was placed as retaliation for coordinating a work stoppage during last year’s nationwide prison strike on September 9th. In addition to his work around the End Prison Slavery movement, Malik is a member of the Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee of the IWW and the Deputy Chairman of the New Afrikan Black Panther Party prison chapter, and is active in the Fight Toxic Prisons campaign.

Malik has an extensive network of support nationally and even internationally, both within and outside of the anarchist community. The interviews we will share today show the diversity of backgrounds, motivations, and stories that go into forming a support network for those engaged in revolutionary struggle while incarcerated, which is to say, from behind enemy lines. The conversations cover a wide range of topics, including a look at the range of issues prison activists like Malik work around; the kinds of relationships prison activists form with their supporters on the outside; the importance of being in solidarity across identities and political labels; and what a revolutionary abolitionist movements means to the people doing this work.

As Malik would say: DARE TO STRUGGLE. DARE TO WIN. ALL POWER TO THE PEOPLE.

You can view Malik’s work at comrademalik.com and write to him directly at:

Keith ‘Comrade Malik’ Washington
TDC#: 1487958
Eastham Unit
2665 Prison Road #1
Lovelady, TX 75851

The audio for these interviews is a bit rough because the interviews were done somewhat on the fly. Stay tuned (look for?) a transcript of these interviews in order to make comprehension a bit easier! It should come out sometime within the next two weeks.

B@d News!

Dear listeners, we would like to invite you to give a listen to the newest edition of the International Anarchist Radio Network’s monthly podcast, B(A)D News: Angry Voices From Around The World, fresh for September 2017. This 4th episode, available at our website, is about 45 minutes of updates from projects based in the UK, Chile, Greece, the Aegean Sea, Germany, El Salvador and from us!

Additionally,

Feel free to give a listen to ARadio Berlin’s Charlottesville reportback episode, done with none other than your host William Goodenuff. This was geared toward an international audience, so the news may not be new to a US based listening crowd, but if you want to hear why one of your hosts has been a lil absent for a sec, this is why. Everything’s fine tho, and I’ll be back to opine over the airwaves next week.

Show playlist is here.

B(A)D News # 4 (September 2017)

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Hey people! Here is bad news #4, presented by Radio Pirata of Tegucigalpa (so-called Chile) with the collaborations of:

* 98 fm presented a roundup of the last month of action and repression in labor, student struggles, anti-fascist anniversaries around Greece;
* 105fm spoke about immigration struggles, resisting fascist attacks, gender violence and other topics from Lesvos and other Aegean Islands;
* Radio Kurruf presented about resistance to and dangers of liquified natural gas from the U.S. imported to so-called Chile and the role LNG plays in the IIRSA (Initiative for the Integration of Infrastructure of South America);
* Rosas Negras speaks about violence against civil society and journalists in particular in El Salvador, violence coming from organized crime and the State;
* A-Radio Berlin shares a report about the recent raids against and shutting down of linksuntent indymedia in Germany by the German government with lots of context;
* Dissident Island Radio presents voices of resistance from the Campaign Against Arms Trade (CAAT) to the London DSEI arms fair;
* The Final Straw Radio spoke with an activist from the South of the U.S. about autonomous Hurricane relief.

Tech Security, Doxxing, Encryption

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For a 59 minute long, radio clean version for syndication purposes, please visit the archive.org collection.

The Main Event

This week Bursts spoke with William Budington, a digital security expert, about various topics under that heading. We spoke about: encryption for texting, email and mobile devices operating systems; about anonymity on the internet; safer practices with social media; doxxing; and more.

The conversation was ranging and a bit thick at times due to Bursts very specific style of posing questions. Thusly, the notes will be very long with lots of links embedded for further reading on the topic, posted in the Further Reading section below. If there are other topics around security that you’d like to hear discussed on this show, drop us an email at thefinalstrawradio@riseup.net and we’ll mull it over. This chat was by no means the end of a conversation. The practices and tools we talked about here are meant to keep you SAFER, but can’t promise your safety. But hopefully some of these words can get more of us to take our digital hygiene more seriously!

Announcements

Political Prisoner Herman Bell Assaulted

We received this notice after the show aired, but hope that folks read these notes and get this info. Herman Bell is one of the New York 3, the same group of defendants as Jalil Muntaqim, who we featured an interview with in our last episode:
Black Panther Party political prisoner Herman Bell was viciously assaulted by guards at Great Meadow Correctional Facility (Comstock) on September 5, 2017. While being “escorted” by a guard back to his housing unit, a guard struck Herman, age 69, in the face causing his glasses to drop to the floor. This same guard then repeatedly punched Herman about the face, head and body. Responding to a commotion, 5-6 other guards arrived and joined in the assault. One of them was able to knee Herman in the chest causing two cracked ribs. Another guard took out a bottle of mace and sprayed it all over Herman’s face, eyes and mouth.

Herman was then taken to the prison infirmary. X-rays have confirmed fractured ribs. Herman’s left eye is damaged from the mace and blows. He has bruises to his body and is suffering headaches, a sign of a possible concussion.

Herman Bell has now been charged with “assault on staff”. Defying common sense, they allege that Herman, for no apparent reason, slapped the guard escorting him. He did this, they claim, in a location out of the view of all inmates but in the presence of other guards. He is now in the Special Housing Unit (box) at Five Points Correctional Facility where he was transferred after the incident.

Herman Bell has not had a disciplinary violation in over 20 years. He was scheduled to begin a three day family visit with his wife a few days after the incident, their first such visit in over 2 1/2 years. In addition he is to appear before the parole board, for the 8th time, in February 2018.

Herman has, however, been the target of guard harassment due to his political background. Visitors report that guards processing them and in the visiting room comment that they are visiting a “cop killer” or “terrorist”. Some guards have been seen passing around the book “Badge of the Assassin” written by Herman’s prosecutor.

At this time, we are encouraging everyone to take the time to write to Herman or send him a get-well card, so that the authorities know we are paying attention and are concerned for Herman. Stay tuned for updates as we develop this campaign.

Herman Bell’s new address is:

Herman Bell #79C0262
Five Points Cor. Fac.
P.O. Box 119
Romulus, N.Y. 14541​

2018 Certain Days Calendar

I’d like to quickly announce that the 2018 Certain Days: Freedom For Political Prisoners Calendar has just been posted as ready for pre-order. The calendar is a joint fundraising and educational project between outside organizers in Montreal, Toronto, and New York, in partnership with three political prisoners being held in maximum-security prisons in New York State: David Gilbert, Robert Seth Hayes and Herman Bell. The proceeds from Certain Days 2018 will be divided among these groups: Addameer Prisoners Support and Human Rights Association (Palestine), Release Aging People in Prison (RAPP) and other groups in need. More info on the project and where to sign up is at certaindays.org

T-Shirt Designs

For all you artistically minded listeners out there, who would like to see their art worn by people (potentially) all over the world, The Final Straw is looking for tshirt desgins! If you like the show, or love it, or just think it’s ok-ish but like to make designs then this challenge is for you.

We will be accepting submissions until the (end of November), and lest you think this is a one way street, the winner of this challenge will recieve a special prize from each of us (Bursts and William) of a personal and one of a kind mixtape which will include all sorts of audio goodies. Runners up will also get prizes, so never fear there’s no heirarchy here.

Want in?? Just email your submission and any relevant info to thefinalstrawradio@riseup.net and keep your ears peeled for the winner announcement.

Show Notes begin in vain

For a starter on COINTELPRO, check out the wikipedia page on the topic.

The Whisper Systems (Signal) case referenced concerning user data disclosure to government is explained by WS folks. Also, here’s a link to Weapons of Math Destruction, the book by Cathy O’Neil that William references.

Doxxing

Anti-Repression Committee in the Bay deals with, among other things, doxxing by the far right in order to build charges against anti-racists.
Discord Chat logs leaked from the Far Right prior to and after #Charlottesville on Unicorn Riot.
Oh Crap! What Now? digital security page
Time to Beef Up Defense Against Far Right Doxxing
Equality Labs released this dope guide to safer practices which overlaps with a lot of the interview and links presented here
In case it’s too late, check out Crash Override Network‘s guide to post-Doxxing mitigation

Bigger Toolkits

That One Privacy Site
The EFF‘s Security Self Defense Guide
Riseup‘s offerings on safer practices and tools

Device Safety

Your Phone is a Cop part one and two
On the topic of vulnerability markets, zerodium.com/program.html got brought up.

Specific Tools

PGP
Enigmail for is an add-on to the Thunderbird email client that makes creating a pgp key set easier.
The Onion Router (TOR) produced this really great package for safer browsing called the Torbrowser package.
TAILS is a portable operating system so you can operate a computer and leave less traces
Signal is a phone app for end-to-end encryption available for iphones, android phones and desktops.
HTTPSEverywhere is a useful add-on for your web browser

VPNs

One VPN intro, including links to clients you can use, can be found at riseup

VPN services to check out
https://www.mullvad.net/
https://www.privateinternetaccess.com/

Online Presence

One tool mentioned to help minimize your online presence is DeleteMe by ABINE.com

Data Brokers you may want to scrub yourself from include:
Spokeo
BeenVerified
PeekYou
PeopleFinders

Various other nefarious tech the state and non-state actors may deploy

IMSI catchers, or phone spoofers, include the name-brand Stingray. The ACLU has this little site that allows you to see what law enforcement agencies they know to have (and probably use) them!
In reference to the Automatic License Plate Readers mentioned by William, here’s an article on the subject

Playlist here