A few weeks ago, when the thoroughly racist Irish National Party tried to hold an event at Lough Erne – a swank golf resort (what is it with racist politicians and golf resorts?) near Enniskillen, Northern Ireland – they got a few more guests than they had anticipated. Before they could get their hate fest going, a busload of antifascists showed up to the soirée to give the fascists a proper Irish welcome. In the aftermath, at least one antifascist was done up on charges and needed some help with the costs of the legal ramifications, which The International Anti-Fascist Defence Fund was pleased to step in and assist with.
You have to admit one thing about antifascist, artist, and independent journalist Alex Stokes – he’s got some guts. His fearlessness led him into the midst of the chaos around the protests against Donald Trump’s inauguration, where he was falsely arrested (and had his charges later dropped). It led him to the 2017 protests in Charlottesville, where he was injured in an attack by fascists. In 2020, he was on the streets, documenting the uprising around the police murder of George Floyd.
So it came as no surprise that when armed Proud Boys who didn’t join their pals in trying to overthrow the US government in the January 6th insurrection decided to show up at the NY state capitol to test democracy there, Alex was there among counter-protestors. And when the Piss Boys attacked the counter-protestors with weapons, Alex jumped up and defended those being attacked. This very detailed video describes step-by-step how Alex’s actions were clearly done in the defense of himself and others that day.
It’s incredible that, on the same day that Piss Boys engaged in the most serious assault against the US government from within in memory, police looked at this melée and decided that the person to be arrested should be Alex and not the well-armed Piss Boys who initiated the violence. It’s equally shocking that, given that everything was captured in great detail on video, the courts did not see what Alex did as clear self-defense and instead, convicted him on assault charges and sentenced him to twenty years in prison!
This is an obvious miscarriage of justice and the stakes of Alex’s appeal of his sentence could not be higher. The International Anti-Fascist Defence Fund is in direct contact with Alex’s lawyer and has already provided substantial support to bankroll his appeal, but more is needed, so we’ve also set up a dedicated crowdfunder to make sure Alex and his legal team have all the resources at their disposal required to overturn his sentence and get him free!
This will be news to far-right extremists, but most American anti-fascists do not view Joe Biden as The Great White Savior and do not anticipate great things from his presidency, other than defeating his outright fascist opponent, This perspective was front-and-center on the streets of Portland on Biden’s inauguration day as well as a few weeks later, when people took to the streets protesting the inauguration and Biden’s “business as usual” immigration policies. Stuff got vandalized and Dak, one of the sole arrestees, was left holding the bag, taking a plea deal that kept him out of prison but also left him on the hook to pay for all of the property damage done in both actions – nearly $50,000USD in all!
That’s a lot of money for anyone to come up with. A donation page has been set up to help with those costs and the Defence Fund, after a healthy debate and vote, decided to help contribute directly.
It’s fair to say that this was one of the more controversial requests for support we’ve dealt with, due to the nature of the event and what got damaged. There was a lot of discussion and disagreement on what to do in this case, but ultimately a majority of the 1400+ people invited to help make decisions about the Defence Fund decided that helping was better than not helping.
By the way, would you like to be part of those 1400+ people that run the Defence Fund? Donate at least $20USD and we’ll invite you to join us!
Not even a month after we sent some support to Adel – an antifascist in Berlin done up on completely bogus charges – HE WAS ACQUITTED ON ALL CHARGES!!! Mad congratulations to him and all of his crew of supporters for this complete victory!
It’s not like this is the first time an antifascist has had their day in court and beaten the case against them, either. Just in the past twelve months, antifascists in France, Canada, the UK, and Germany, have all faced down the police and prosecutors in court and walked away free because they had solid lawyers with them – lawyers that the Defence Fund helped pay for. It’s becoming increasingly clear that the difference between being an antifascist locked away in prison and an antifascist on the streets defending the community from bigotry comes down to having enough money to pay for a good lawyer.
That’s one of the main reasons our project of antifascist solidarity exists. We’re extremely proud to say we have a long track record of success to back us up. And we want you to join in that success by making a contribution to the Defence Fund right now!
By now we’ve all seen what happens when bigots and far-right extremists join forces with anti-science/anti-public health COVID konspiracy kooks. Around the world, this toxic mix has led to violent street demonstrations by those who equate “freedom” with the freedom to blithely harm others.
One such street demo happened in Berlin in March of 2021. There was an altercation when opposing anti-fascists put the principle of not conceding public space to outright fascists into practice and there was an altercation with of the fascist elements in that march. Of course, as cops always do, the intervening police singled out only the anti-fascists for arrests after the fracas died down, and were especially keen to arrest racialized anti-fascists like Adel.
Adel – an anti-fascist and migrant – was held in lockup for two weeks after his arrest, with his actual trial commencing in November 2021. After several delays and legal wrangling, Adel’s trial was suspended indefinitely, which leaves our friend with a legal sword of Damocles hanging over his head, ready to continue his trial and lock him up at any moment.
As you can imagine, this would be stressful enough for anyone, but on top of that Adel is left with a hefty legal bill from his lawyers who have got him this far already. No anti-fascist should incur such a hefty financial burden for defending their community and our sense of solidarity compelled The International Anti-Fascist Defence Fund to help him pay his lawyer bill.
You’ll find more information about Adel, including how you can help him pay for his legal defence, on his support group’s website; you can also help us defend anti-fascists like Adel by making a contribution to The International Anti-Fascist Defence Fund.
It is an affront to a nation that suffered so horrifically and resisted so heroically under fascism to watch it devolve into a fascist state itself decades later. If you thought that Russia’s current fascist trajectory was something Putin dreamed up earlier this year, Dmitry can tell you different.
Dmitry is a Russian antifascist who has been actively involved in the struggle there for years. His involvement increasingly put him in the crosshairs of the Russian state, which lead to his arrest in 2020 outside a court hearing for the infamous RUpression/Network frameup and then again a year later when protesting the poisoning of anti-corruption activist and Putin opponent Alexei Navalny. During that second arrest Dmitry managed to record much of his interrogation on his phone – a daring and incredible feat when you consider the beating he received at the time, compounded with the fact that he is nearly completely blind.
Fast-forward to February 2022 and, on the eve of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Dmitry realized that the authorities would soon come calling on him again, leading him to flee to Georgia, where he actively protested against the invasion and raised funds for the Ukranian resistance. However, Tblisi being just 40km away from Russian tanks caused our friend to re-think his location and he is now applying for asylum in western Europe.
One of the major obstacles preventing him securing safe refuge are his finances – trying to get by on about $300USD/month does not leave much to procure resources to put your asylum case together, so The International Anti-Fascist Defence Fund was pleased to be able to help him with that.
That’s what our friend spray-painted on the LA courthouse, in the middle of a protest/in direct response to the murder of George Floyd, back in the summer of 2020. For that crime, police and prosecutors wasted no resource to bring them incorrigible set to “justice.”
We’re not sure what kind of sentence you’d expect someone who spray-painted a building to receive, but our friend has been forced into a plea deal in exchange for a month in prison & $8000 in damages. This, to our mind, seems excessive and completely over-the-top given the nature and context of their crime. Many of the would-be insurrectionists of January 6th fame, for example, have received lighter sentences.
Nevertheless, this is what is happening and after some debate about whether or not the context of this action = anti-fascism, The International Anti-Fascist Defence Fund has stepped in to help our friend pay off those damages somewhat. We hope their time in the clink is short, unmemorable, and uneventful and they’re back out with the rest of us ASAP.
If the four years under Trump felt like dangerous times to be an American antifascist, you would not believe what being a Filipinx antifascist under Duterte was like. Duterte compared himself to Hitler and, expressing his wish to literally exterminate the over 3 million people involved in the drug trade in the Philippines, gave a green light to police, paramilitaries, and far-right vigiliantes to start indiscriminately murdering people. We may never know the resulting death toll, but some put it as high as 27,000 people murdered.
Imagined for a second what it would be like opposing a fascist national leader whose police and military are on a state-sanctioned killing spree of “drug dealers” and “junkies” (which means anyone they say are either of those things). “Xx” can tell you all about that. As someone with years of activism under her belt, Xx has done organizing work with young people, labourers, and others. This work put her and her colleagues squarely in the crosshairs of Duterte’s extermination campaign as his thugs worked to wipe out opponents to his brand of fascism. After being forced underground when her colleagues were rounded up, “Xx” lived with one eye open at all times, which saved her from an attempt to kill her and her colleagues at a children’s literacy class they were conducting. Two years later, nearly all of her colleagues were murdered by the military – a fate she escaped only because of her being away at an appointment at the time.
This last incident made it clear that staying in the Philippines would be a death sentence for Xx, so she attempted to secure a temporary visa to come visit relatives in a safer country. Unfortunately, her request was denied and she remains in danger while she appeals that decision. The International Anti-Fascist Defence Fund sent her some support to help with that appeal and we hope she gets out and finds safe haven as soon as possible.
Portland folks are likely to be acquainted with local bigot and self-styled “hard man” Adam Kelly who likes to spend his free time with the terrorist outfit Three Percenters and the violent hate group Patriot Prayer. Like many of the clowns associated with both groups, Kelly likes to try to compensate for his myriad failures in life by talking tough about what he’s going to do to his perceived enemies, like vowing on Twitter to murder anti-fascists at a 2019 hate rally in Portland.
Unfortunately for Kelly, it turns out that antifascists weren’t willing to turn the other cheek and let him murder them that day and Kelly’s bravado earned him nothing more than a visit to ER for some head trauma no doubt administered in self-defense.
The racist thugs at the scandal-plagued Portland Police Bureau, of course, can’t let a friend of theirs like Kelly get his comeuppance without intervening, so after three years they’ve decided to charge someone, someone who asked us to help with their legal defense. And help is what we did. Because teaching people like Adam Kelly how the sentence “Fuck around…” ends is never a crime.
Help us to defend anti-fascist efforts to educate racist boneheads by making a contribution to the Defence Fund today!
Police in Calgary, Canada certainly try their best to live up to the city’s “wild west” reputation by being as violent as they possibly can with racialized people. Take the case of Constable Alex Dunn – a Calgary po-po who despite being convicted of assault after slamming a handcuffed Black woman face-first onto the concrete in 2017 received no jail time for the assault and kept his job on the Calgary Police Service! People were understandably upset about this and protests at Calgary’s courthouse ensued, demanding that Dunn be fired. After about two weeks, an off-duty officer is alleged to have threatened to physically assault and murder the protesters before running into the courthouse to file charges against the protestors he is alleged to have threatened!
So now our friend, who was concerned enough about the courts turning a blind eye to wanton police brutality, must beat charges levied against him in those same courts. This requires money and we were glad to be able to help him reach the amount needed to have a good lawyer working his case. If you think it’s outrageous for police to get away with assaulting racialized people and then charge the people protesting their violent abuse, we’re with you. If you want to help people facing situations like this, a contribution to the Defence Fund is a great way to do that!