This week William spoke with Maria and Jeff, who are two long term members of the humanitarian aid group based in Arizona called No More Deaths. This group does solidarity work with those who are crossing the border in that region, as well as advocacy, legal work, and work which runs along many other vectors of solidarity. We will speak about the group and how each member got involved, the exact nature of the work and some media myths that the group gets leveled at them, along with the rise in repression that No More Deaths has faced in recent weeks, culminating in highly militarized raid on Bird Camp, a remote outpost that serves as a clinic, on Thursday, June 15. We will go on to discuss the strategy behind Border Patrol’s surveillance and repression of those who are crossing and aid workers, and will talk about asks for assistance that the group is thinking of.
You can visit NMD online at nomoredeaths.org, plus follow them on Facebook and Twitter if you want to keep up with calls for solidarity and with updates on their situation.
Those titles that Maria mentioned for further reading if folks want to learn more about the border and how it got that way are:
The first musical track in this episode is by Calle 13 with “Pa’l Norte”. They are a Puerto Rican hip hop group that often tackles themes that are oppositional to the border, border patrol, and FBI. The episode closes with a track from an Argentinian atmospheric metal band called Ruinas/Raíces with Dos Colores Fundiéndose which is the first track off their title album that just came out in April. You can find them on the blog Red and
Anarchist Black Metal.
This week we spoke with Dawn Marie Paley. Dawn came onto the show last year to discuss her essay, Drug War Capitalism. Dawn is now about the publish a book by that same title with AK Press.
On September 26, teaching students from the leftist Normalista College in Ayotzinapa, Guerrero, Mexico, protested in the city of Iguala against public policies and in remembrance of the 1968 Tlatelolco massacre in the run-up to the Olympics. In response to the protest, their buses were fired upon by about a dozen police vehicles later that day. Following that, 57 of the normalista students were detained, with 14 later returned. That leaves 43 unnaccounted for, rabble-rousing students in southern Mexico who’ve been disappeared. Soon the story that Narco’s had taken the students from the police emerged but was withdrawn. The police chief and the Mayor are on the run. The search for the students brought news of 11 recent mass graves discovered in Iguala which an Argentine group is investigating, despite interference by the government. Protests have spread across Mexico, from the burning of the State Congress building in Guerrero to the blocking of freeways in Michoacan to demonstrations in Mexico City and abroad.
Dawn tells us about the overlaps between Narcos and the Mexican State in such state crimes as this and the involvement of U.S. policy/training/weapons & money in the formation of the Mérida Initiative (Plan Mexico) and creation of Drug War Capitalism seen in so many countries in Latin America. Also, this new moment that appears to be flowering in Mexico where people, despite the fear of the impunity of their attackers and the spinning of their webs, are talking and acting against government as a solution and seeking answers in their own hands.
This weeks show features 2 interviews. The first is with Savannah, an anarchist working on solidarity with members of the North Carolina tribe of the Almighty Latin Kings & Queens Nation. ALKQN members are facing RICO charges in Federal Court. The trial begins October 22nd, 2012. More info can be found at alkqnsolidarity.com
The second part of the show, we speak with Jeremy, an Anarchist who was invovled in copwatch in the South Barton Heights neighborhood in the north of Richmond, Virginia. Jeremy asserts that he faced increasing harassment and eventually imprisonment for being a vocal and visible proponent of holding cops accountable and spreading the practice of copwatching. For more about Richmond CopWatch, check out wingnutrva.org
The third part of the conversation will concern efforts by law enforcement at many levels to label political organizers as gang members, including those recently arrested in the San Francisco protest against Christopher Columbus Day, Jeremy and those doing support work with ALKQN.
Dawn Paley is an independent journalist based in Vancouver, BC, Canada. Much of her work deals with the displacement of peoples, particularly of First Nation peoples, in Latin America as a result of the militarized and U.S. fueled War on Drugs. The story that Ms. Paley tells illuminates the creation of Free Trade agreements, the Multinational corporations that profit from the displacement of marginalized peoples from resource rich lands and links between state security forces and paramilitary narco-groupings into a complex web of profits and losses. As in most cases under Capital and State, there are a few winners and many who suffer the penalties.
This week’s show features a conversation with Victoria Law. From her PM Press Author’s page:
“Victoria Law is a writer, photographer, and mother. After a brief stint as a teenage armed robber, she became involved in prisoner support. In 1996, she helped start Books Through Bars-New York City, a group that sends free books to prisoners nationwide. In 2000, she began concentrating on the needs and actions of women in prison, drawing attention to their issues by writing articles and giving public presentations. Since 2002, she has worked with women incarcerated nationwide to produce Tenacious: Art and Writings from Women in Prison and has facilitated having incarcerated women’s writings published in larger publications, such as Clamor magazine, the website “Women and Prison: A Site for Resistance” and the upcoming anthology Interrupted Lives.”
This week we speak to Vikki about the second edition of her book, “Resistance Behind Bars: The Struggles of Incarcerated Women.” We discuss patriarchy, criminalization & invisibility that is faced by those held in women’s prisons. We also talk about resistance, organizing, support and engagement of those on the inside and about the organizing that formerly incarcerated people do to help their comrades on the inside.