These words are for every one of us who has ever felt helpless against
an enemy a thousand times larger than yourself.
increased. In different countries the attention of the authorities has
focused on different movements, but the substance remains the same:
state and governments protect the abusers, not the abused. They protect
the perpetrators, not the victims. They protect those who rape, kill and
enslave. Not those who challenge the very existence of the cages. To do
this, they are using new laws, special police units, more and better
In this recent case against the animal liberation movement, those who
write have been accused of a crime: to allegedly have set free almost
5000 minks from their cages, where they would have lived a life of fear,
distress and confinement before being killed and made into fur coats, at
a fur farm in the dutch village of Barchem.
For this reason we will face trial the 25th and 27th of September in
We’ll not spend more words on this specific event, considering that the
trial is yet to come, but we’d like to offer our perspective to the
movement, about what repression is doing, about what repression
really means to us.
Repression needs to be dealt with head on. It needs to be expected, we
need to be prepared and ready to accept the consequences of challenging
the actual state of things. Without this awareness we are going to live
our lives in fear and not fight in any kind of effective way. Repression
is born out of effectiveness. Every action has a reaction, that is why
governments and police step in to stop effective ways of achieving our
aims. If we were being ineffective, then nothing would be done to stop
us because the authorities would not care.
We need to accept the idea of repression, if what we want is to create a
struggle that will make any kind of change. Repression and effective
change are basically two sides of the same coin. The worst reaction to
repression is for us to run scared. This gives repression it's power. We
as a movement choose how we react to repression, and whether we can
allow it to affect us or not. Continuing with the campaigns they try to
stop is the absolute best way to challenge and fight repression. Come
back harder, better, more organized, stronger, and more prepared. Expect
and deal with repression in order to lower the impact when it happens.
Learn from each others mistakes and empower our strategies. Otherwise,
we leave the authorities with a blueprint that they can use to trample
out any other kind of dissent, in any other kind of movement.
This is the way they work: they hit one of us to teach a thousand. This
is the very aim of arrests and house raids, of isolation and
imprisonment. It’s their best weapon: to instill the fear in our heads
to make us harmless, to make us silent.
For this reason, while we face this trial we’d like everyone to remember
that we, too, have our weapon. Is a weapon stronger than theirs because
is built on compassion and rage, it’s based on dedication and sincerity
between people who share the same sense of urgency: it’s called solidarity.
Solidarity means supporting each other in times of need, but also
fighting back, not letting the fear win over our lives or stop us being
effective. It means coming together as a movement, with all our
strengths, skills, and abilities. And ultimately, coming together
through our shared aim; ending the ruthless exploitation of our fellow
living beings and of the planet that host us all.
Solidarity is the key to keep every struggle alive and to create a
movement that they’ll never be able to break.
Because no one is free, until ALL are free.
Some defendants in the "Barchem 4" case.