East Anglian Anti-Fascist Network

October 27th, 2016 by DIT Collective

DIT Collective is proud to be participating in the newly formed EA-AFN. This is a network of individuals, groups, and organisations working to broaden communication about anti-fascism across the region. While Norfolk isn’t a hotbed of activity as some other parts of the region are, there is nonetheless an undercurrent that we must remain vigilant about.

If you have any questions or concerns relating to fascist, neo-nazi, traditionalist, or other far right activity and feel comfortable talking to us about it then please send us an email or message us on FB. All information will be treated with sensitivity and security.

eaafn

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William Skinner Phillippo and the Norfolk Fox Hounds

September 28th, 2016 by DIT Collective

Even during the so-called “golden age” of hunting during the 19th Century, the sport was no more popular amongst people of the countryside than it is today. This letter by William Skinner Phillippo to the Norfolk News in 1856 illustrates how the problems of fox and other game hunting – including how it hides behind the machinations of Law – haven’t changed in more than 150 years.

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Calais // The Jungle

September 26th, 2016 by DIT Collective

We’ll be heading over to the Jungle in Calais in November, carrying hopefully lots of items that are currently on the priority list over there. If you’d like to provide some donations, or if you’d like to help us out, then please email or send us a message on FB.

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Latest update on the Feed the Revolution campaign

September 21st, 2016 by DIT Collective

Good news received a couple of days ago.

Dear friends and supporters,

the Feed The Revolution campaign ended three months ago and you’re probably wondering how the project is going. So, here is the short version: It is going well!

And now for the long version: The work in Tirbespiyê is continuing. In May the municipality gave us an area south of the city for the fertilizer facility. The area had been designated as a waste dump by the Syrian regime before the revolution, and there was already a fence, a high three-sided concrete wall and a half-finished maintenance building there.

When the campaign ended in mid-June it was well short of our ambitious goal of 200 000 USD. We knew that we would not be able to do the project without further help because we needed workers and building machines to get the facility ready. We therefore talked with the municipality again, and with the ministry of social affairs of Cizîre canton, who were aware of the great importance of this project and quickly agreed to take over a large part of the construction of the site.

Construction then stalled again, because of the war: the needed machines were all at the frontlines in Minbic and Şedade. In August the construction finally began with Zagros company, a local enterprise contracted by the municipality. Since then work has been advancing fast and well.
So far the well has been dug, the outer wall has been repaired, the huge mount of gravel and earth in the middle of the place has been dug away, the whole ground has been leveled – the area for the primary mounds with a slope of 3% – and been covered with a gravel layer in preparation for the asphalt. The house has been completed, but still needs plastering, painting and water and electricity connection, which is happening this week, after Cejna Qurbanî, the Muslim sacrifice festival. It has three rooms: One changing room with showers, one common room and an office including an archive.
Secondly there are three machines needed for the facility: A shredder to cut the  straw, a large grinder to mix the biological waste and grind up larger pieces, and a a drum sieve for the final process, to separate the ready fertilizer from parts that still need more composting.

We first wanted to build a high-end grinder that would last a long time and not be affected by rust or damaged by solid pieces in the waste. For that we needed chrome, the required quantity of which we couldn’t get in Rojava. So we tried to import it from Iraqi Kurdistan, but that didn’t work out because of the embargo. Finally we decided on building the machine a little differently with locally available steel, and on an optimized pre-sorting process to prevent stones or other unwanted objects from entering the grinder.

Thirdly a mixed Kurdish and Arab education team of five people is ready to give lessons on the process and the importance of waste separation in the communes and schools of Tirbespiyê, and 3 000 explanatory brochures in both Kurmancî and Arabic have been printed so far. The education will not start until the facility is ready, so the people can start the waste separation right away and there will be a place for the waste to go to. Also we have been collecting empty petrol barrels and sent them to a workshop in Qamişlo where they are being remodelled to be used as waste bins.

Here is a link to some pictures of the Tirbespiyê facility taken last week:

https://rojava.network/?page_id=20&lang=kmr

***

During the two months of near-stagnation during the summer we have been looking everywhere for a solution to the ever more urgent need for fertilizer. In Til Temir, a town in the west of Cizîre canton, we found a huge industrial cow farm that had been out of service since the region was invaded by Cebhet en-Nusra (Jabhat en-Nusra/JN) four years ago.

Around the site there were several huge reservoirs holding thousands of tons of cow droppings accumulated over the years. Even better, the farm also held   several hangars full to the brim with straw. With so much readily available high-quality raw material we decided to start right away with a second facility in Til Temir. We managed to find an old grain storage just 3 km away from the cow farm with three empty hangars and a large asphalted area in front of them and got permission from the agriculture committee to use it for the project. As the local municipality didn’t have any vehicles available we rented two trucks and a wheel loader from a local entrepreneur at a very low price and started bringing the cow droppings and straw to the new place.

The Til Temir facility needs only a small budget as the place was almost ready to be used. The only further construction we did there was the digging of two wells. As opposed to the more mechanized Tirbespiyê facility the work will mostly be manual, apart from the three mentioned machines that are also being built for Til Temir.

If you want to see pictures of the work in Til Temir, follow this link:

https://rojava.network/?page_id=23&lang=kmr

So right now we are working on two facilities, one in Tirbespiyê and one in Til Temir. The money will be enough to get both facilities going until the project becomes self-financing. So far all of the money has been designated, except for 8 000 USD that we keep as an emergency fund in case of further obstacles (machine breakdown etc.). If everything goes to plan though we will use it to buy a skid loader for the Til Temir facility.

Once both facilities are producing fertilizer we will establish a fund for the financial surplus extra to what is needed to keep the facilities running, which will pay for upgrading and repairing the existing equipment as well as establishing further composting facilities all over Cizîre canton.

On behalf of the fertilizer project team and the Cizîre economic committee I want to thank you again for your trust and your support without which this project would not have been possible. We will keep you updated on the progress over the next months. If you have any questions or remarks, please contact us at info@rojava.network, subject: Feed The Revolution.

All the best from Rojava,

Îsmaêl Hêvî
Project coordinator
Cizîre canton economic committee

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Practical Solidarity With Rojava

September 10th, 2016 by DIT Collective

We received this message slightly too late to be shared at our Rojava screening but it is insightful and practical so we wanted to share it here. It comes from Jo at A Girl and Her Thumb.

So obviously the biggest news is that Turkey has invaded Rojava under the pretext of fighting ISIS, and is instead killing Kurds (as usual), including unarmed civilians in Rojava who are protesting the building of a new wall that Turkey is erecting along the border, between North Kurdistan (East Turkey/Bakur) and West Kurdistan (North Syria/Rojava).

It’s important that we stand up and take action on this. Turkey is a NATO member and our government is permitting this to happen. If we want Rojava to survive, this is the time to act. It has never been as important as this before. There is a new strategic alliance between Erdogan, the USA, Assad, Iran and Barzani (KRG/Iraqi Kurdistan) ALLLLL against Rojava and the wider Kurdish movement. These people and states all hate each other, but they are coming together to fight the Kurds.

Another important campaign is the campaign to free Ocalan. There are currently 50 people from multiple Kurdish parties and platforms on an “indefinite and irreversable” hunger strike. They are really ramping up the pressure on this one now, as Ocalan has been entirely cut off from absolutely everyone for something like 2 years now. The other day I met 2 men who have been on hunger strike for over a week already in Strasbourg, who were on their way to a meeting with the European committee against torture. They want them to apply to visit Ocalan on Imrali island and check his condition, as all other applications from lawyers, etc have been denied. There have also been fringe meetings at all the big trade union meetings, with the aim of getting the trade unions to sign up as supporters of the campaign. I believe this process is going very well.

There are also other campaigns, such as the campaign to delist the PKK and the campaign to open the Simalka border crossing, previously the only open border into Rojava, in order to allow vital supplies of food and medicines to enter.

You can also still fundraise for Feed the Revolution. I have their bank details, though they very much prefer cryptocurrency as they “don’t like to encourage the use of banks”.

On a smaller level, these are a couple of interesting articles about things people are doing in solidarity on the coops front:

One coop has partnered up with a bakery coop starting up in Rojava and they are fundraising specifically for that coop.

There is going to be this conference here in Brighton in November that might interest people:
http://steps-centre.org/events/emancipatory-transformations-radical-democracy-kurdistan/

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Mike Huskisson at Norwich Anarchist Bookfair 2016

September 5th, 2016 by DIT Collective

We recorded the talk given by Mike Huskisson at this year’s Norwich Anarchist Bookfair and have uploaded it for you. Whether you were there and want to re-listen, weren’t there and would like to check out what happened, or would like to use it for samples/reference/fun, the recording below is yours to do with as you please. A slightly edited version will be appearing soon on Which Side Podcast as part of their lectures series.

Mike talks about hunt sabotage and his experiences with undercover work. This is followed by crowd discussion involving Mike about various animal liberation topics.

Our original version can be found here.

Thanks to Mike for his permission to put this up online. For more on his current activities check out the Animal Cruelty Investigation Group.  Thanks also to the Bookfair organisers for letting us make this recording.

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Veganism: A Different Approach – I. Capitalism Is Not The Answer

August 27th, 2016 by DIT Collective

For the past few months we have been working on putting together a publication that is aimed at the Norwich and Norfolk vegan scene, one that would introduce what seems to be an important but missing discourse from the community.


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Some Local Bastards

August 14th, 2016 by DIT Collective

Here is a Government-mandated list of local bastards, taken from an 11th August 2016 press release, that can’t even be bothered to pay their staff minimum wage.

While this lot are horrible, let’s not forget that there are plenty of larger companies doing similar things that the Government turn a blind eye to because £££s.

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Bijî Rojava

August 12th, 2016 by DIT Collective

Title: Bijî Rojava
Location: Space Studios, 5 Swan Lane, Norwich, NR2 1HZ
Link out: Click here
Description: Rojava is the autonomous Kurdish cantons of northern Syria, who since 2011 have been implementing a system of horizontal direct democracy they call “Democratic Confederalism”. Influenced by the works of the late Murray Bookchin, as well as autonomous struggles such as Revolutionary Catalonia and Zapatista Chiapas, the people of Rojava are implementing one of the most inspiring and successful anarchic societies the world has yet seen – and it is happening RIGHT NOW. All this whilst also being just about the most successful force of resistance against the spread of ISIS in the region during the past few years.

For this evening we will take a slightly different approach to previous months. Rather than airing a single feature length documentary (of which there aren’t many out) we have decided instead to curate several short films that will hopefully show a number of different sides to Rojava and the revolutionary Kurdish peoples. We do not claim to be experts in the subject, and cannot claim the films shown are the best possible available, but we hope they will at least inform you and introduce you to what exactly is happening in northern Syria at the moment.

We hope to have some people with more experience than us coming along, to share their opinions and knowledge, but won’t guarantee it right now. Watch this space for updates though.

This will be on the third floor of Space Studios, 5 Swan Lane, Norwich on Sunday 4th September. Runs from 6pm to 9pm with the films running a total of approximately 80 minutes. There will be time after to discuss what’s been aired.

As ever, this is free entry. Bring your own food and drink.
Start Time: 18:00
Date: 2016-09-04
End Time: 21:00

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Whin Close Poultry Farm approved

August 4th, 2016 by DIT Collective

Sedgeford poultry farm application approved by west Norfolk councillors

West Norfolk Borough Council approves plans for a high intensity poultry farm near Sedgeford, in the north west of the county.

The farm will comprise four buildings, each 20.1m by 91.4m, that each hold 45,000 broiler hens (i.e. chickens raised for meat rather than egg production). According to Newcome Baker Farm’s own application this equates to 38kg/m2; at an average maximum weight of 2.5kg that broilers reach before slaughter, that means there are approximately 15 chickens per square metre. This falls below even the RSCPA’s already poor “Freedom Foods” expectations.

  • Website for the proposed development. Note the use of the word “farm” rather than factory: a facile attempt at distraction and PR control that continues throughout the entire website. For example, there are almost no details about the actual development itself even on the so-called “The Facts” tab.
  • The planning applications submitted by Newcome Baker Farms Ltd to West Norfolk Borough Council. These contain actual details.
  • List of appointed directors. Other businesses owned by them include Fakenham Racecouse, South Pickenham Estate which holds regular pheasant shooting days, and “Countrywise Sports Ltd” and “West Norfolk Amateur Racing Club Ltd” that both  seem to be shell companies for who knows what. A bunch of lovely people, in other words.

While the No to Poultry Factory campaign focuses primarily on the impact that Whin Close Poultry Farm will have on the local human community, this is an important issue for people in Norfolk that give a shit about animals and the earth.

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