Saturday 19 November saw a mass fascist attack on an anarchist bookstore in France in the aftermath of a fundamentalist catholics rally of the SPXX organisation which in Ireland is central to the anti-choice movement.
The Society of St. Pius X (SPXX) has a history of anti-Semitism and holocaust denial of an intensity that even the catholic church has taken action against its bishops from time to time. It was was founded in 1970 by the French archbishop, Marcel-François Lefebvre, who supported the pro-Nazi Vichy regime and remained part of the far right.
La Plume Noire appears to have expected the attack and reports that a dozen people were on hand to defend the building. A larger group of fascists with weapons attacked it and during the course of an attack that lasted a while the windows were smashed and a number of the defenders where slightly injured by projectiles thrown at them, We reproduce a translation of their report from Anarkismo below, see link in comments.
Fascist attack in Croix Rousse (Lyon) and on the anarchist bookstore la Plume Noire
Last saturday, 19th of november, 2016, in the middle of the afternoon, fundamentalist catholics and other far-right activists were calling for a rally place Colbert, to protest against a project to convert the “Saint-Bernard” church (currently disused) in a business center, and to demand that it was attributed to the “saint Pie X” brotherhood, a particularly reactionary catholic organization, close to fascist circles.
This rally was prohibited by the prefecture. In its statement, the prefecture mentioned the danger of disruption of public safety and shamefully put in balance violent fascists with progressive and antifascist activists present in the neighborhood.
The rally took place despite its prohibition, with members of the GUD (“Groupe Union Défense”), “Action Française” and “Parti Nationaliste Français”, wearing helmets and weapons. They made a first appearance in front of our premise, the “Plume Noire” bookstore, in the beginning of the afternoon.
Those fascist activists, openly ready to commit violent actions, were not disturbed or inspected by the many policemen that were there. Instead, those policemen protected the rally and held back antifascist activists and inhabitants of the neighborhood.
We are not surprised by such deference, even in the context of the state of emergency, even while this state of emergency was a pretext to the increased repression against progressive social movements. A few weeks ago, the police was protesting at night in the streets of Lyon, hand in hand with this far right.
Around 6p.m., when the fundamentalist rally was over, around twenty fascists activists, still well equipped, climbed the hills of “Croix Rousse” and brutally converged towards the “Plume Noire”, where there were a dozen of our comrades.
The people in the bookstore brought down the metal curtain to protect themselves, but the fascists managed to raise it again and smashed another shutter, destroying the glasses that were behind it.
The resistance of our comrades prevented the fascists to enter the place, but couldn’t avoid property damages: the destruction of all window panes and part of the metal blinds. Several people were slightly injured in this attack that lasted long minutes, mainly because of projectiles (stones, metallic tools, bottles) thrown by the fascists. When they arrived and when they left, the fascists chanted “on est chez nous”, “la France aux Français” (xenophobic slogans) and “death to the Jews”, as signs of rally and dispersion.
This heinous attack isn’t an isolated incident. It took place nearly 20 years after far-right activists set fire to the previous location of the “Plume Noire” in 1997, and it follows from the current rise of far-right and fascism, which results in a multiplication of attacks against minorities, trade unionists, and feminist, antiracist, LGBT and progressive activists.
These attacks are stimulated by the opening of new fascist places in several french cities such as Lille and Lyon, serving as places to organize this fascist intimidation strategy. In Lyon, there are now 4 fascist premises (PNF, GUD, Action Francaise and “les identitaires”), without any reaction from the authorities and from the Lyon city.
In the face of such challenges, we reaffirm that we won’t be intimidated, and we call to solidarity and to a large reaction from all components of the progressive camp.
The Lyon group of the “Coordination des Groupes Anarchists”
Fundraising call to support «La Plume Noire» and its activities
Following the fascist attack on the bookstore « La Plume Noire » which took place on November 19, 2016, the « La Plume Noire » collective calls for solidarity in order to keep being active in decent conditions. Keeping this venue alive and even developing it as a central place for popular struggles and for the anarchist movement is the best way to answer the threats of the far-right wing.
Anyway, a bit, a lot, with joy and passion, give whatever you can!
- Online: https://www.lepotcommun.fr/pot/ukh1owag
- Or by sending a check to
« La Plume Noire
8 rue Diderot
69001 Lyon »
- Or through direct bank transfer to « La Plume Noire »
IBAN: FR16 2004 1010 0711 8625 8J03 850