The Greek Anarchist Movement Responds to Assault on Exarchia
In this episode of the It’s Going Down podcast, we speak with a long-time anarchist based in the Greek neighborhood of Exarchia. This discussion takes place at a time when the new government, New Democracy, is in the middle of launching a violent assault against the neighborhood which for decades has been a hotbed of anarchist activity, squats, guerilla gardens, rebel art, and is largely a cop-free zone.
In our discussion, we speak about the history of Greece from World War II up until today as well as the history of the anarchist movement itself, focusing primarily on the last 11 years, and speaking largely on the massive insurrection that broke out in 2008. We then discuss the coming to power of the far-Left Syriza government and their betrayal of social movements as well as the current refugee crisis, and how anarchists have responded by setting up a large network of squats.
We also talk about the continuing threat of the far-Rigth in Greece, primarily Golden Dawn, as well as the coming to power of a new far-Right party, New Democracy, who campaigned heavily on clearing the anarchists, refugees, and squatters out of Exarchia. We talk about how the movement is responding to the recent wave of violent evictions, raids, and police attacks, and how this mobilization in solidarity with the neighborhood might signal a new turning point for the anarchist movement.
While its frightening that a ruling party would come into power off of playing up fears and anger directed against the anarchist movement, squats, and refugees, anarchists are hopeful that the energy that is erupting on the streets of Athens will continue to grow.
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