We are an Anarchist Communist organization, acting in the territory of Palestine/Israel. What does that signify for us?
Anarchism is the organizational-political aspect of our conception of the desired character of human society. Anarchists reject authoritarian and hierarchical social mechanisms, foremost of which being the state. Such mechanisms – whether formal or informal – deprive individuals and groups of the power of social influence. Authority, government and discipline repress us, body and mind, and prevent our self-fullfilment in voluntary social activity, in brotherhood within the circles of our life and general human solidarity.
Instead of these structures we wish to establish a society characterized by self-management, by a multitude of groups and organizations in the various spheres of life, having appropriate access to social-economic resources. We believe that wider social structures – which are of crucial importance – can and should be run in a distributed, federated manner. This kind of self-management should apply all the way from the level of local communities to the level of world-wide federation, with coordination and cooperation at the different levels. The power to make execute decisions impacting individuals and groups – shall not be confiscated from their hands to those of a mechanism of representation by electees or appointees, who decide and set policy in the name of their constituencies. Those affected by a potential decision will participate in the processes of making it and of executing it.
Accordingly, we reject the concept and practice of Sovereignity – the administration of society by central control and aggressive central enforcement of decisions and laws; we reject the tools of Sovereignity: armies, police forces and prisons; and we reject state principles of justice and morality, such as the rule of law and the obedience to authority. These contradict rudiemntary Anarchist principles: Freedom, equality, solidarity and self-management – which should guide society instead.
Communism is the economic organizing aspect of our desired society. The most fundamental and powerful social patters are rooted in 'the economy', that is, in the relations of production and consumption in society. Most human socieities are divided class-wise according to roles in these relations; and in modern Capitalist society, the main division, described roughly, is between Capital (and Capitalists) and Labor (and salaried workers). The first attempt to appropriate the bulk of this world's wealth, but even worse – they prevent the latter, and almost all of society, from ensuring a satisfying and rich life in material, emotional and physical well-being. The masses of workers (and uneployed, and in some societies also the peasents) are prevented from exercising capacities of production, planning, distribution and organization – the enormous such capacities in modern, mechanized and digitized society – in order to satisfy their group and personal needs. Within this wealth, most of us are struggling to make ends meet, to secure our basic existence.
In stead, we support the expropriation of the means of production and distribution by society at large, and by the workers at each workplace in particular. The socialized economic systems should be operated without use of money, without payment, profit or loss; good and services shall not be bought or sold in markets; and economic enterprises shall be staffed, operated and administered in cooperation between the workers, the consumers of their outputs, and producers of their inputs and their surrounding communities. In a Communist society, the basic needs of all will be provided irrespectively of their contribution and of their appraisal by their surroundings – as the material reality allows this, and the social structures will not prevent it. As for surplus reasources, time and capabilities – these will be allocated through the distributed mechanisms of coordination, to satisfy wishes and preferences of individuals, social groups and society as a whole.
For us, this Communist approach would constitute a realization, in the economic sphere, of our basic Anarchist principles. In fact, the causal direction is also the reverse: Understand the power relations between ourselves and the commercial enterprises where we are employed and their owners, out of our personal and collective class struggle; and out of the historical experience of workers' movements in the world – Anarchist principles develop in our perception also as organizational principles for social life in general.
Palestine/Israel is the territorial region in which we live. We do not acknowledge the validity of its borders, drawn up by European Imperialism and later updated by Zionist aggression. We reject the continued existence of the state of Israel, and of the Zionist movement, its progenitor: A dispossessive colonizatory movement for the creation and maintenance of a 'Jewish State'. We condemn and mourn the occupation of the Palestinian people in the 1948 and 1967 territories, and its multi-faceted oppression since. However, we are certain that the replacement of a dispossessive settler state with a joint state in Palestine, in some regime configuration or another – will not constitute a solution for most problems facing the Hebrew-and-Arabic society in this country. We support a more thorough, radical, process of de-colonization towards an Anarchist Communist Arab-Hebrew non-national society.
Organization Our organization supports a social revolution, but does not presume to bring it about itself or to lead it. We are active in a country with limited Anarchist, worker, anti-authoritarian traditions. The links and acquaintance with Anarchist movements through the years, as well as Anarchist thought published here. And the above is true both in the Palestinian- and Hebrew-speaking public. Finally, there are no established Anarchist organizations active in this country – either 1967 or 1948.
Therefore our main goals are:
- Raising awareness of Anarchism as a socio-political current and making information available about it.
- Development of a critical Anarchist perspective on the socio-political reality, in this country and globally, and bringing it into public discourse.
- Clarifying the the theoretical and practical alternative to the statist tendency within the opposition to the existing social order. Specifically, we wish to engender a meaningful alternative to those currents of the Palestinian national liberation movement which consider the formation of a Palestinian state the foremost aspect of this liberation, and to other State-Socialist movements.
- Serving as a framework, platform, stage and catalyst to Anarchist initiatives of individuals and groups.
- Collaborating with non-Anarchist organizations and initiatives in struggles which agree with our principles.
- Developing cooperation and relations with Anarchist organizations in the Arab East and around the world.
Much of our organizational activity is internal. Most of us work regular jobs to support ourselves, have limited experience in political and organizational activity, and limited knowledge of political though and social history. For this reason, more of our goals are:
- Sustenance of a supportive framework for individual and collective self-study of Anarchism and in the spirit of Anarchism.
- Offering a space for experience and development in political and organizational activity, without having to accept centralistic and authoritarian preconceptions and fundamental structures – or, at the least, an opportunity to consciously contend with such preconceptions and structures within the organization.
We adhere to the principle of prefiguration in political action; and we know that as individuals and as a group we bring with us and maintain even amongst ourselves aspects of alienation, privilege and oppression. For this reason, more of our goals are:
- Breaking the boundaries of separation by ethnicity and language, and our transformation towards an Arab-Hebrew (-Russian etc.) organization, present and active in different regions of Palestine.
- Striving to engender within our organization, 'Unity', a paragon of the principles we wish to promote in society as a whole, to the extent possible – while being aware of the unattainability of such a situation in detachment from wider societal change.