THE STRUGGLE FOR THE REGROUPMENT OF IMPRISONED REVOLUTIONARY MILITANTS
a document by Vincenzo Spano
This proposition must above all be assumed as an initiative of struggle. It is in effect an initiative of struggle against:
— the mystification which, in recent months, was carried out by the French media around the arrests of several revolutionary militants and the political histories which they represent;
— the tendency to isolate the communists from their global reality, which is the reality of the entire proletariat.
Mystification, repression, and isolation are the terrain on which recent months have seen the attempt to annihilate that which the imprisoned comrades represent: the revolutionary route for the liberation of the proletariat in the European metropolitan territory of western capitalism. This political annihilation takes place via the attempt to depoliticize our collective identity, by reducing it to an individual criminal identity. This is the attempt to depoliticize the instrument that characterizes our existence in a fundamental way: armed struggle for communism.
CONTENTS AND OBJECTIVES OF THE STRUGGLE
The struggle against the effort towards the political annihilation of our revolutionary subjectivity and against the terrain on which this annihilation is achieved, that is to say, mystification, repression, and isolation, signifies struggling to appropriate social space and communication between ourselves and between ourselves and the outside. These are, in my opinion, the general contents and the base of our struggle.
The objectives around which these contents are concretized are the objectives which other comrades have already indicated, that is to say:
— regroupment of imprisoned revolutionaries;
—real freedom of postal communication, without seizure of letters or the sabotage of outgoing mail;
—no arbitrary limitations of authorizations for visits with parents, friends, and comrades;
— unsurveilled visiting rooms;
— the possibility and space for collective preparation of trials.
Only the achievement of these goals in their totality, without any being excluded, guarantees the minimum threshold of the general contents of social space and communication on which the struggle should be based.
The reason I propose this configuration in terms of general concrete objectives, where the first give a political value to the second, is the necessity to develop the struggle in a way coherent with our identity, without falling into the confusion which is always possible.
1. THE WESTERN BOURGEOISIE AND THE POLITICAL PRISONERS
a) On the status of political prisoners
Here we have a term which is part of the entire bourgeois baggage of the so-called question of Human Rights, civil rights, respect for the political identity of each individual, etc… The tendency of the bourgeoisie is always to dress itself in the clothes of bourgeois democracy, to give itself the appearance of neutrality with regards to the political choices of each subject, to mystify the reality of the repression it produces behind the respect for formal and false liberties. This is the language which we, revolutionaries, must not use because we objectively risk playing the game of the dominant class.
Each time that it speaks of all of this, the western bourgeoisie does so with another goal that has nothing to do with the word liberty. For example the bourgeoisie struggles through propaganda and action for the defense of the rights of political prisoners in the East. All of that stinks of filthy mystification: not only because the West European bourgeoisie is certainly no stranger to political repression in its own territory, but above all because this preoccupation of the European governments with regards to the various Sakarovs is nothing but a good chance to enrich the ideological propaganda campaign for the preparation of imperialist war against the Eastern territories. The bourgeoisie is totally indifferent to the real rights of the peoples of these territories.
On the Western side, that is to say at home, each time the bourgeoisie concedes improvements to the conditions of detention of the political prisoners, they do so because they have been forced to by struggles. They attempt to present their concessions as their capacity to respect subjective political identity, to control the defeat that flows from the fact that they have given in to a struggle. The bourgeoisie concedes rights when they are pushed up against the wall, then they brag about the concessions they have made, and the mystification continues ad infinitum.
As well, the bourgeoisie concedes more humane conditions of detention in exchange for the selling-out of the political identity of the detained subject. This blackmail produces a mystification which covers the blackmail itself. This is a widespread practice all over Europe, but it is in Italy that it has attained its most massive use. That which has been previously stated is, therefore, most comprehensive and most visible there: the Italian bourgeoisie bragged, in recent months, about the democratization of special prisons. But, on the contrary, what we are seeing is a diffuse policy of differenciation of conditions of detention: freer for those who actively dissociate from armed struggle, harder for those who don’t. The bourgeoisie spreads propaganda about the liberalization of conditions
of detention to hide the reality of torture and psycho-physical annihilation as instruments for the political annihilation of communist fighters.
We can therefore say that in Western Europe humane conditions of detention for political prisoners are only given by the bourgeoisie due to the force of the struggle or as a result of blackmail and the liquidation of political identity. Everything is managed by the bourgeoisie and propagated in public opinion with the rhetoric about respect for civil liberties, political liberties, etc..
B) The particularities of France
I don’t know the French situation in a developed way, but I think that certain factors are very clear. In France, more than in any other European country, the discussion around respect by the bourgeoisie for political subjectivity is widely diffused and praised by the French bourgeoisie, and this in a particular manner. This is due to the tradition of France as a country of political exile, as a country of social revolutions made in the name of liberty, etc.. This tradition was already an ideological of the bourgeoisie in the
proceeding phases. Today, the recycling of this tradition (for example, by conceding political amnesty, the status of political refugee, and that of political prisoner) is the way in which the historical mystification of the French bourgeoisie is represented, henceforth at the stage of Putrefaction.
The mystification produced by this tradition, in the metropolitan territories and in the multinational phase of imperialism, is, more than anything, publicity that the bourgeoisie make for themselves, a self-satisfaction by which the French bourgeoisie nourishes its intellectuals, as much those of the right as those of the left, from where come those who do the most to dirty the word liberty, and who attempt to implicate the population in their filthy game, and above all the proletarian section of the population. They therefore function as organic intellectuals of capital, as ineffective builders of its ideology. Ineffective because the current level of contradiction attained by capital in the metropole unveils the entire structure of bourgeois ideology which has been in irreversible crisis for decades.
It is thus, as in the rest of Europe, that in France, the bourgeoisie hides behind a discourse about respect for the political subjectivity of interest other than those that they claim to have. One could give many examples, such as that of the political refugees in France, who come from the four corners of the world, and who the bourgeoisie use for propaganda about their neutrality with regards to all totalitarian regimes. In reality it costs the French bourgeoisie nothing to shelter these subjects, who are used as an excellent workforce for the lowest and hardest jobs in which they are super—exploited (for example the Asian refugees) and, at the same time, are used for ideological propaganda.
The French behavior with regards to refugees from West European countries is different. They are, sometimes discreetly, sometimes not so discreetly, persecuted and provoked. This is the case for the Irish, the Italians, and the Basques. Clearly, those that actively and clearly announce their diassociation from the struggle in their own country are treated with kid gloves, and this treatment enters the French ideologicial propaganda of mystification about refugees. This is the case with the Italian dissociates (like Negri and Scalzone), flowers blooming from the supposed respect for political subjectivity on the part of the socialist government.
As in all other situations of repression and control, it is the policy of differentiation between those who consent to power and those who don’t that serves as an instrument to mask and mystify a desire for political annihilation.
Another example is the situation of the Basque refugees: on the one hand, there is the GAL, a secret Spanish anti-guerilla structure in agreement with their French collegues, on the other hand, there are the recent arrangements between the Spanish and French governments regarding the repression of the guerilla, a formalization of the annihilating content expressed by the GAL.
From all of the above, the importance and necessity of expressing in our struggle the maximum clarity in contents becomes evident. As revolutionary subjects in the metropole our struggle is against the mystification that this social and economic formation of advanced capitalism produces. Increasingly, I believe that, in France, there is a special mysification about the relationship between the bourgeoisie and political subjectivity. It is, therefore, more important to be clear because, more than in other European territories, we risk finding ourselves caught in mystification and ideological propaganda.
This is the primary reason why I’m called to refuse the discussion of political prisoner status and to outline the struggle in terms of the appropriation of social space and communication. These are the contents which refuse a judicial form (by this I’m referring to the current French situation), and which are, therefore, difficult to mystify because they develop from the concrete struggle against the disguised desire for the annihilation of our political and human identity.
2. The western bourgeoisie and the fighting subjectivity
a) Terrorism and the armed struggle
In the relationship between the bourgeoisie and the fighting subjects, that is to say, those who express their political practice with arms, the bourgeoisie acts in terms of the annihilation of political subjectivity. It is an annihilation which, as much as possible, is camouflaged and mystified by the political non-recognition of the militant and her/his actions, which are criminalized. The militant is thus considered as the wrong-doer par excellence, because s/he assumes responsibility for her/his behavior and choices. The repression that s/he suffers is presented by the bourgeoisie as repression necessary for particularly dangerous and deviant subjects. This is how the political annihilation which is realized by this “necessary repression” is mystified. When this level of mystification no …