sabato 31 marzo 2012

Athens: Declaration by CCF member Christos Tsakalos during the 6th trial session in the second ‘Halandri case’ (1-2/2012)

According to your court indictment, Conspiracy of Cells of Fire is a terrorist organization. But words were never, nor are or will ever be neutral. Words acquire the meaning given by the person who uses them. We do not speak the language of the judges and prosecutors. We speak the language of the hunted who have refused the victim’s role, the wanted who have not handed themselves in to the authorities, the prisoners who have not caged their will for freedom, the anarchists who have never kneeled in front of Power. Solidarity, Dignity, Urban Guerrilla Warfare, Anarchy, these are our words, that we unleash as an insult against your system.

Yes, that’s right, we are anarchist urban guerrillas and proud to participate in the rebellion of our desires, under the name Conspiracy of Cells of Fire.

For you, who stand behind your judicial benches, we are terrorists because your soul is a scared shade which only feels safe behind cops and in the books of your dead laws.

We are terrorists against your interests and your Power. Life, physical integrity, safety and property of the judicial clique, the political authority, the oligarchy of the wealthy and the bosses are being targeted by both us and our unarrested comrades.

However, a different terrorism is hovering above the lives of most people. Terrorism is the endless queues in a tax office, in public organizations, in banks. Terrorism is the bosses’ orders to their staff. Terrorism is the heavy hand of the police landing on minor delinquents and poor devils. The worst terrorism, though, is the TERRIFYING ascertainment that no person raises its head. Terrorism is the silence and passivity. Terrorism is the fact that no person undertakes its own life.

We have also seen your terrorism; the terrorism of justice. We have seen tens of prison inmates returning from your courts, having an empty gaze and their lives burdened with several decades in prison. We have seen friends and relatives collapsing from your ‘just’ decisions.

We have seen your expressionless faces and your well-fed bellies fitting into your expensive and armored cars. We have heard and know your hefty salaries and your secret, under-the-table agreements that are of service to your valued buddies, the big publishers, the industrialists and your political supervisors. How many centuries in prison have you truly dished out throughout your career in order to serve a system which itself generates, through exploitation and oppression, those who you consider criminals?

Hence, outside of the books of your laws, if someone wants to seek the meaning of terrorism in real life, where the scared today dreads the threatening tomorrow that’s yet to come, you yourselves and the Power are the terrorists.

As for our terrorism, it is the human will for freedom and anarchy. Apparently, you dread this will, so you vote new terror laws, you establish exceptional courts-martial, you take special security measures, you do not allow us to talk to our relatives and companions during trial recesses, and even when you take us to the detention rooms, ten metres from your court room which is built inside the prison, you handcuff us. This means that you are really scared. This is an honour and pleasure for us, because it shows that a group of people, a circle of anarchist of praxis can terrify an entire State. This shows that, away from the silence and passivity of the mass, the will of only a few people is sufficient for your system to be crushed.

You should know that there are several insubordinate individualities living self-exiled from your society, who prepare and arm themselves, while they collectivize their own desires to overthrow the history of servants and their masters. That’s when you will really sense the concept of anarchist tromocracy; an anarchist tromocracy which is expressed with fire on banks, ministries, police stations; exploded with bombs outside luxurious villas of wealthy people, courthouses, multinational companies and industries of nature and animal exploitation; written with bullets fired on the dictators of our life and freedom; spoken inside court rooms by the mouths of prisoners of war, such as we who are not scared of your convictions and your prisons. This is the anarchist tromocracy. Thus, revise your indictment and add in your documents that CCF is an anarchist terrorist organization.

And all of us, who participate in this organization, are proud to be its members, and our rage is an axe over your heads that’s spinning… spinning… spinning…


(read also Summary of Days 5 & 6 of 2nd Halandri Case Trial)

Day 5: Tuesday, January 24

At the start of the session, Ifigenia Karandrea, the lawyer assigned to represent Damiano Bolano, asked to speak. She said the three days (two of which, Saturday and Sunday, weren’t even workdays) that had gone by since the last session were not enough time to either study the voluminous case briefs or properly communicate with her client. She mentioned that in order to see Bolano she was forced to interrupt a family visit, and that if the judges didn’t give the defense more time she doubted whether she would continue to attend the trial, since “what should prevail is the rendering of a fair trial.”

Diamantis Kariotis, the other court-appointed attorney assigned to to Bolano, then also asked for the trial to be postponed for a few more days. The request by Bolano’s lawyers was echoed by Fragiskos Ragousis, the attorney for the three other comrades on trial.

The presiding judge, clearly perturbed, asked the lawyers in a rude, unpleasant tone if they would be amenable to postponing the trial until the following Monday. They responded affirmatively, and the prosecutor agreed as well. After a short recess, it was announced that the trial would continue on Wednesday, February 1.

Day 6: Wednesday, February 1

Defense attorney Ragousis, who represents Christos Tsakalos and the brothers Giorgos and Michalis Nikolopoulos, submitted three objections and two demands to the court. Specifically, he presented objections regarding the lack of competence and “inappropriate composition” of the court’s panel of judges, as well as demands for the audio recording of the proceedings and for an end to the police-imposed security measures that require the confiscation and photocopying of ID cards belonging to family members and people showing solidarity who attend the trial. The objections and demands were also supported by the rest of the defense attorneys—H. Sipsas (the other lawyer for Tsakalos and the Nikolopoulos brothers) as well as Karandrea and Kariotis (the court-appointed attorneys assigned to represent Bolano). This presentation by the defense took almost three hours.

Michalis Nikolopoulos then spoke. Addressing the judges, he said: “Neither you nor any other institutional organ of power deserve to judge us. Simply put, you don’t deserve to politically judge either the choices made by the Fire Cells Conspiracy revolutionary organization or those of any other free, rebellious person. You can’t judge us, no matter how many trials you’re going to hold, no matter how much propaganda you’re going to spread via the mass media.” He continued by saying that the three attacks in question for which the Fire Cells Conspiracy claimed responsibility “have yet again pushed the political system up against the wall.”

Three acts of anarchic terrorism whose objective was to bring terror to the homes of politicians and the doorsteps of their ministries. Three attacks that were declarations of anarchist revolution and once again affirmed the positions of our organization. It’s clear that we are in favor of, support, and identify with the attacks carried out by our organization, like these three. The truth is that the only evidence you have against us is our own statement in which we revealed our membership in the organization. Nothing else. Let’s make one thing clear: we didn’t release that statement because we were being crushed by a mountain of evidence, as that was never the case. Nor did we release it out of a belief or a desire to engage in the logic of confessing something about our revolutionary activities to the state, or the belief that the Fire Cells Conspiracy revolutionary organization had come to an end then and there. We released it because, as dignified revolutionaries, we have a responsibility to defend our struggle and our proposals from inside the walls as well. It’s a matter of historical necessity that has nothing to do with “winners” and “losers,” but rather the “dignified” and the “servile.” If we hadn’t revealed our membership in our organization, then what would you be doing? Absolutely nothing. We never get involved in all that “guilty or innocent” of bourgeois legality. We are illegals, armed enemies of the regime. We simply position ourselves with regard to those things because we like to shed light on the real tactics used by the state against its political enemies.

Nikolopoulos concluded by commenting on the police assertions that “the Halandri apartment was a Fire Cells Conspiracy safe house,” saying: “The same pieces of evidence showed that the home in question never functioned as an organizational safe house. The Fire Cells Conspiracy certainly had many safe houses. However, the bloodhounds of the Antiterrorist Unit never managed to discover them.” Regarding this point, and to back up what he was saying, he read excerpts from Haris Hatzimichelakis’ statement.

Tsakalos then spoke. This is his complete statement:

According to the charges, the Fire Cells Conspiracy is a terrorist organization. But words never were, are, or will be neutral. They acquire the meanings given by those who use them. We don’t speak the language of judges and prosecutors. We speak the language of the hunted who have rejected the role of victim, the wanted who haven’t turned themselves in to the authorities, the imprisoned who haven’t caged their will for freedom, the anarchists who have never knelt before power. Solidarity, Dignity, Urban Guerrilla War, Anarchy: those are our words, which we hurl insultingly at their system.

Yes, we are therefore anarchist urban guerrillas and we are proud to belong to the rebellion of our desires called the Fire Cells Conspiracy. To those of you seated behind the judge’s bench, we are terrorists, because your spirit is a frightened shadow that only feels safe behind the pigs, that only feels safe in the books of your dead laws.

We are terrorists in opposition to your interests and your power. The life and personal integrity of each one of you; the security and property of your judicial gang, political power, the oligarchy, the rich, and the bosses: all those things are in our crosshairs as well as the crosshairs of our comrades who haven’t been arrested.

Nevertheless, another terrorism is hanging over most people’s lives. Terrorism is the endless lines in the tax office, throughout the public sector, in the banks. Terrorism is the orders given by bosses to their employees. Terrorism is the heavy hand of the police falling on petty criminals and poor devils. However, the worst terrorism is the TERRIFYING verification that no one is raising their head. Terrorism is silence and passivity. Terrorism is the fact that no one is taking their life into their own hands. We have also seen your terrorism. The terrorism of justice. We have seen countless prisoners return from your courthouses with blank stares and lives weighed down by dozens of years in prison. We have seen friends and family collapse after hearing your “fair” sentences.

We have seen your completely expressionless faces and well-fed bellies getting into your luxurious armored cars. We have heard and know about your considerable salaries and your secret, under-the-table deals that favor your distinguished friends—big-shot editors, industrialists, and your politician superiors. Really now, how many centuries of prison have you dealt out over the course of your careers serving the very system that, through exploitation and oppression, gives birth to those whom you consider criminals?

Therefore, beyond your law books, if one wants to find out the meaning of terrorism in real life—out there where the fearful today dreads the arrival of a threatening tomorrow—then the terrorists are you and power.

As far as your own meaning of “terrorism,” it has to do with the human will for freedom and anarchy. You seem to fear that will, so you pass new antiterrorist laws, convene extraordinary courts martial, take special security measures, prevent us from talking to our families and comrades during trial recesses, and handcuff us while you bring us to holding cells 10 meters from the courtroom. This means you are actually afraid, and that is an honor and a joy for us, because it shows that a group of people—a company of action-minded anarchists—is capable of terrorizing an entire state. It shows that, far from the silence and passivity of the masses, the will of just a few people is enough to strike a blow at your system.

You should know that there are plenty of unyielding individualities out there who live in self-exile from your society. They are getting prepared, arming themselves, and collectivizing their desires in order to subvert the history of slaves and masters. Then you will really feel the concept of anarchic terrorism—an anarchic terrorism expressed through fire against banks, ministries, and police stations; an anarchic terrorism exploding out of bombs in front of the luxury villas of the rich, courthouses, and the multinational corporations and industrial conglomerates that exploit animals and nature; an anarchic terrorism written with bullets fired at the dictators of our lives and freedom; an anarchic terrorism spoken in courtrooms through the mouths of prisoners of war just like us, who don’t fear your sentences and prisons. This is anarchic terrorism. You should therefore correct your charges. You must add to your judicial reports that the Fire Cells Conspiracy is an ANARCHIST terrorist organization.

And all of us who participated in it are proud of being members, and our rage is like an ax hanging over your heads, always swinging, swinging, swinging.

Prosecutor I. Liakopoulos then insisted on postponing the trial until February 7 in order to prepare his proposal regarding the objections and demands presented by the defense. Presiding judge H. Vriniotis was very inflexible and, after a short recess, announced that the trial would continue on Friday, February 3. In addition, he decided (and this time the prosecutor was also in agreement) that the defense attorneys had to mandatorily submit all their objections and demands at the same time, after which the prosecutor would present his opinion about them. Only then would the court make its decisions on the matter. All that “in order to not waste more time.” It should be pointed out that objections are normally presented by the defense at the same time that disagreements arise regarding the proceedings. Therefore, the court is thus attempting to obstruct the defense—“preventively,” shall we say.

Meanwhile, on January 31, judicial functionaries responsible for the different cases involving the Fire Cells Conspiracy issued three orders, each consisting of many pages. The first order contains the decision regarding the comrades arrested during the December 4, 2010 antiterrorist operation. Apart from Dimitris Michail and Christos Politis, who were in fact acquitted of all felony charges (although they will have to appear in court for misdemeanor charges relating to, respectively, a bottle of pepper spray and a small quantity of marijuana found in their homes), the other four—Stella Antoniou, Giorgos Karagiannidis, Alexandros Mitrousias, and Costas Sakkas—are being charged with “membership in the Fire Cells Conspiracy,” “explosives possession,” etc. Antoniou and Sakkas are thus now officially charged (up to this point it was a matter of “membership in an unnamed terrorist organization”), while Karagiannidis and Mitrousias—who have already been sentenced—will be tried again for the same crime, i.e., “membership in the Fire Cells Conspiracy.” Additionally, the six comrades arrested after December 4, 2010 who have revealed their membership in the group (Michalis Nikolopoulos, arrested at the end of January 2011; and Bolano, Tsakalos, Olga Economidou, Giorgos Nikolopoulos, and Giorgos Polydoras, arrested in March 2011) will also be tried in the same case.

The second order contains the decision to summon all nine comrades who have revealed their membership in the Fire Cells Conspiracy (including Hatzimichelakis, despite the fact that he was already behind bars at the time), plus Karagiannidis and Mitrousias, to the trial for the mailing of incendiary packages (which action was carried out on November 1, 2010 and claimed by the Fire Cells Conspiracy). We must add that, already some time ago, several of those being charged for the packages—Karagiannidis and Mitrousias among them—submitted petitions requesting face-to-face meetings in the presence of the prosecutors with the prosecution witnesses and shipping company employees who supposedly recognized them. All those petitions were denied. Also rejected was the petition to release Antoniou based on the serious health problems she is facing.

The third order has to do with the “Volos Case,” i.e., the March 2011 arrest of five comrades. The nasty surprise is that nine people will be summoned to trial for this case. We still don’t have details about the four other people in question.

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