Check the list of upcoming info-events leading up to BAB2023 here
Another mini info-tour in Italy – arranged through Organizational Assembly of BAB2023 and our comrades abroad – has just been put behind us. This time we had the opportunity to have with us our comrade from Cluj, Romania, who was part of the organisation of BAB2022.
At once we saw how much we missed the personal vis-a-vis encounters with comrades instead of chats, emails and online meetings. Also, it has been again confirmed that BAB is a joint project of the broader Balkan movement – and how much it means to different groups and individuals.
Our first stop was in Parma on the 13th of April at Ateneo Libertario Parma in Via Testi 2 – the place where, amongst others, the local of USI-CIT (Unione Sindacale Italiana) have their place. We presented the history and idea behind BAB and general context of the former Yugoslav region and the Balkans.
Besides the general sharing of information about the local situation of anarchist publishing and organising, the questions that had been opened were regarding the Italian military industry neo-colonialism, workers rights and migrant workers situation.
We were also shown by local comrades some of the spaces of interest of general antifascist and the libertarian history of Parma. We had made a stop at the places where, in 1922, the lumpenproletariat and workers of Parma erected barricades against the attacking fascists. We also visited the memorial plaque of Antonio Cieri, a militant of the 1922 barricades and fighter in Spain, where he lost his life, just like many other comrades, on the front of Huesca. Finally, we have also stopped by the small monument of another important antifascist organiser, Guido Picelli.
We stayed with our new comrades till late on the streets of Parma. We had fulfilling discussions on the topics of divisions in the anarchist movement, football and others of which we do not remember, since the drinks were cold and night was pleasantly warm.
Next stop: Milano. We first visited the space of the Pinelli Archive (founded in 1976) as well as Eleuthera publishing house. There, in Via Jean Jaures 9, we had a long and interesting meeting about the history of the archive and the movement in the city. We barely managed to scroll through the shelves, as there are so many items that they are in possession of, but what also surprised us was seeing the boxes of the private archive of comrade Claudio Venza from Trieste, who recently passed away.
With the occasion of our presence we have also forwarded our invitation to one of the discussions that will take place during the BAB: on anarchist archives, libraries and publishing projects and why they are so important. Many groups and movements have started from the act of writing and printing, from publicising ideas and creating libraries. So, there was a good match with our new comrades, as they have all of these.
We also talked in depth about the anarchist movement in Yugoslavia in the 80s. This discussion started from the fact that the comrades in Milano published a book about the important international anarchist gathering in Venice in 1984, an event at which there was a high attendance from the Balkans. We realised yet again how the wars of the 90s managed to disperse the movement and create a gap between generations that will not be easily bridged. You will be able to hear more about the Pinelli archive in one of the next Črna Luknja radio shows, as we managed to make a long interview.
On Saturday, before the presentation, we managed to go to Piazza Fontana, to pay our respects to comrade Giuseppe Pinelli, killed in 1969 by the police, after being falsely charged for an action he did not do. Later that day we went to Ateneo Libertario in Viale Monza 255, where, again, we had the occasion of seeing their archive. The place is used by different initiatives among them FAI Milano, and publishing house Zero in Condotta.
The presentation went smoothly, after which a comrade from the Anarchist Bookfair of São Paulo, Brasil presented their story and system of organising.
The well visited event was more informational but we had the opportunity to discuss concrete topics afterwards: we again got questions about the possible contacts in Albania – concretely from a person that had tried to get in touch with anybody constantly. We hope that the new edition of BAB will bring/reveal the link or contact that we have lacked.
Also, very important to us was that we have found in the archive the pamphlet that we know well and from which we had taken this year’s slogan (Over the walls of nationalism and war, published in 1994 by anarchists and deserters from former Yugoslavia).
Comrades from Pinelli also took us for a visit in the city of Monza, where there is a social centre, FOA Boccaccio (the only one there). Impressive thing is that every time it is evicted, the space will just move a couple of buildings away, and make a new occupation. There is a strong support for this place, and we have seen this at that evening’s event of Critical Wine. Here local producers of wine met with the broader movement, and all while in the background live brass music was playing and antifascist and anarchist messages were written on the walls.
Finally, we have to admit that we also had good Gelato.
Ciao Anarchici, until the next info-event!
. . .
There was another BAB2023 info-event organized in Italy recently. On the 7th of April the presentation and discussion took place in Cucine del Popolo in Massenzatico as part of the public program of the 12th Congress of the International of Anarchist Federations. At the Congress delegations of anarchist organizations from Argentina, Cuba, Mexico, Brasil, UK, France, Spain, Portugal, Switzerland, Italy, Slovenia, Bulgaria, Greece and Romania participated. It was rich in content and strong in decisions. The International is expressing strong support and is announcing its participation at BAB2023.
If you want to organize info-event for BAB 2023 in your local social or autonomous space where we can present history and perspectives of the event and promote this year’s gathering in Ljubljana (it can be organized also with our online presence), please contact us via email: bab2023(at)riseup(dot)net