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Anarchist Black Cross

The Anarchist Black Cross (ABC) is an class struggle prisoners worldwide. It commonly contrasts itself with Amnesty International, which is concerned mainly with prisoners of conscience and refuses to defend those accused of encouraging violence.[1] The ABC openly supports those who have committed illegal activity in furtherance of revolutionary aims that anarchists accept as legitimate.[2]


  • History 1
    • Black Army 1.1
    • Later years 1.2
  • Quotes 2
  • List of ABC groups 3
  • See also 4
  • References 5


The traditional symbol of the Anarchist Black Cross.

The Anarchist Black Cross began as the Anarchist Red Cross, a breakaway organization from the

  1. ^
  2. ^ a b [1]
  3. ^ a b Christie, Stuart, Edward Heath Made Me Angry,, 2004, ISBN 1-873976-23-2, ISBN 978-1-873976-23-4, p. 1964
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^ Avrich, Paul, Anarchist Portraits, Princeton University Press (1990), ISBN 0-691-00609-1, ISBN 978-0-691-00609-3, p. 116
  7. ^ Goldman, Emma, Trotsky Protests Too Much: An Essay, The Anarchist Communist Federation, Glasgow, Scotland (1938) Essay: Trotsky's campaign against 'dissident elements', sanctioned by Lenin, killed or imprisoned thousands of anarchists. Most of those imprisoned were later sent to concentration camps in Siberia; few were ever heard of again.
  8. ^ a b
  9. ^
  10. ^ Garcia, Miguel, Franco's Prisoner, (1972) Hart-Davis. ISBN 0-246-64070-7
  11. ^
  12. ^
  13. ^
  14. ^
  15. ^
  16. ^
  17. ^ [2]


See also

  • ABC Belarus [11]
  • ABC Irkutsk [12]
  • ABC Moscow [13]
  • ABC Nancy [14]
  • ABC Mexico [15]
  • ABC Rio [16]
  • Solidaritaetswerkstatt (Hamburg/Germany) [17]

List of ABC groups

"We believe, as most Anarchists do, that [2]

"When we lost the war, those who fought on became the Resistance. But to the world, the Resistance had become criminals, for Franco made the laws, even if, when dealing with political opponents, he chose to break the laws established by the constitution; and the world still regards us as criminals. When we are imprisoned, liberals are not interested, for we are 'terrorists'. "[10]


[8] The organization continued to grow, spreading throughout Europe and North America. In 1995, ABC chapters in the US merged into a Federation- the

During the 1960s, the Anarchist Black Cross was reformed in Britain by Stuart Christie and Albert Meltzer with a focus on providing aid for anarchist prisoners in Francisco Franco's Spain. The reason for this was Christie's experience of the Spanish State's jail and the importance of receiving food parcels. At that time there were no international groups acting for Spanish anarchist and Resistance prisoners. The first action of the re-activated group was to bring Miguel Garcia, who Christie met in prison, out of Spain on his release. He went on to act as the group's International secretary, working for the release of others.[9]

Later years

For a time, the Anarchist Black Cross was tolerated in Moscow and Petrograd by the Society to Help Anarchist Prisoners, devoted mainly to supplying food to anarchists and other dissidents on the left. The work proved difficult, even where food was easy to obtain, as it would often be confiscated by Bolshevik Red guards encountered on the way.[8] By 1922, even anarchist aid workers in Moscow and Petrograd such as Senya Fleshin and Mollie Steimer were themselves arrested by the GPU on the grounds of "aiding criminal elements" in violation of the Soviet state security code.

It was at this time that the organization's efforts were shifted from prisoner support to emergency medical response and self-defense. With the onset of attacks from Cossacks, White Guards, pogromists, and later the Red Army, the Ukrainian Black Cross took on a unique secondary role preparing city defenses and organizing the first urban army in Ukrainian history. As a city militia, the Ukrainian Anarchist Black Cross worked alongside units of the anarchist Black Army, but were never a mobile force, being primarily based within city environs. Members wore no formal uniforms, but were identified by wearing denim overalls and distinctive armbands.

In 1918, Revolutionary Insurrectionary Army of Ukraine or Black Army in the territories of Ukraine which they controlled.[5]

Black Army

However, according to Harry Weinstein, one of the two men who began the organization, the activities of the group began after his arrest in July or August 1906.[4] Once released, Weinstein and others provided clothing to anarchists sentenced to exile in Siberia. Weinstein alleged that the group broke off from the original Political Red Cross in late 1906 when Weinstein and other anarchists received no support despite ample donations from the anarchist community. Weinstein continued his efforts in Russia until his arrival in New York in May 1907. Once there, he helped to create the New York Anarchist Red Cross, which included such members as Mother Earth editor Louise Berger. In 1911, a Philadelphia, Pennsylvania chapter of the Anarchist Red Cross was founded by Morris Beresin and Boris Yelensky.

By 1905, the group changed its name, dropping "Red Cross" from the title.[3] In this era, the group used various names including: Chicago Aid Fund, Society to Aid Anarchist Prisoners in Russia, Joint Committee to Aid Revolutionaries Imprisoned in Russia, and finally, the title that would remain, the Anarchist Black Cross.

Within a few years, the organization spread beyond the Russian borders to the United States and England, where exiled revolutionaries had settled. [3]

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