"No one is illegal" in Lvov

16 Aug 1999

In Przemysl, the demo was rather unnoticed, nothing special to say except the total desinterest of media and local anarchists.

In Lvov, however it was totally different. The number of of people from Poland came down from 7 to 2 (you know Lviv is a nice town to visit), but there was Max from Kiev (Tigra Nigra) and Amandine from Paris.

Anyhow, we chose a spot in the "Freedom Avenue", where there is always meetings of old Ukrainian nationalists. There was some confusion, because the red/black flag is also a nationalist ukrainian symbol (perhaps because Makhno is considered as a fighter for independence, and nothing else).

There was quickly about 400 people around our banner saying "Deportations Stop" and "No one is illegal" in Polish and Ukrainian. There was some discussions why the polish text is bigger, etc, but there was only one or two guys who said that Poles should keep their hands off Lvov (most of those people were born when Lvov was in Poland).

Almost all of the people were very moved that we came especially to show solidarity with Ukrainians, and shook our hands and applauded. They called for Polish-Ukrainian brothership against the "Moskale" (the Russians). The leaflets were signed "Polish Anarchist Federation", and Max explained who we are, and what all this is about.

The most negative reaction came from the leader of polish minority association, who shouted how could we make a demo in Lviv without their permission, and that it destroys all their work. They said we must go to their offices next day and explain. Of course we told them to go (...). This association is doing whatever they can to poison Polish/Ukrainian relations.

One 70-year old guy asked us to accept his membership in our anarchist organisation, and to send him our publications. He also knew about the anarchist group that once existed in Lvov, and about the meeting that took place two years ago (it's described in the old alter archives on the web page - address in the header of this message).

He has spent a little too much time accentuating the important role of Jews in the stalinist murder apparatus (which on the whole is true, but is not a reason for a paranoid collective responsibility theorising), but on the whole we liked him.

Anyhow, the reaction was really incredible. Those hundreds of people continued discussing about it until late night (we passed again to see), and probably they will make legends about it for the next years. And the polish nationalist association was given a good kick in the ass.

(Annex for those who don't know: the action was aimed against the deportations of "illegal" Ukrainians who come to work and trade to Poland, against the interest of both our nations, but for the interest of the Eurosoyuz).


Near Zielona Gora in Western Poland:

Friday, October 15th An action against the headquarters of the Polish border police for the Western region took place in Krosno Odrzanskie near Zielona Gora. Demonstrators shouted anti-repression slogans and put up posters throughout the town. A small group made a small attack on the border police headquarters with tear gas grenades.