It's Going Down

IGDCAST: When the Smoke Clears, Reflections on the J26 Antifa Mobilization

The anti-fascist convergence in Sacramento, CA on June 26th was only one of many recent large scale mobilizations against the far-Right, but is remembered because it was also one of the most violent. The event itself brought together between 400-500 people to shut down the Traditionalist Worker Party (which in Sacramento was made up of the Golden State Skinheads), who were joined by a smattering of other white supremacists. The mobilization was organized largely by antifa and anarchists with the stated purpose of physically shutting down the Neo-Nazi rally. The fascists, numbering only about 15-18, only stepped onto the capitol grounds for about 20 seconds before they were quickly driven away and chased back to their cars. During the clashes, one of the Neo-Nazis dropped a gun while another was spotted in the hands of a different Nazi skinhead as the fascists fled to their cars, only to have them viscously attacked.

In the following podcast, we present to you a recording from a recent event at The Base in Brooklyn, where the presenter, a member of Sacramento Antifa speaks as a participant in the shutdown in Sacramento. During the talk, they spend much of their time discussing the behind the scenes work that went into providing support for the 9 people who were injured in the clashes. Far from presenting the 9 anti-fascists who were injured as victims or devoid of agency over their actions, the speaker instead talks about how a network of defense and support was set up to make sure that those in the hospital were taken care of and watched over in case of Neo-Nazi reprisals. Anti-fascists also had to contend with the fact that located in the same hospital was a Nazi that was recovering from a neck wound, as well as the fact that fascists online began to release people’s personal information. Anti-fascist organizers also had to work to raise money for medical bills, while also juggling the stress of the mainstream media, people’s families, and also mental and physical burnout.

It’s easy to boil the lessons of the Sacramento mobilization down to the need for just better training, being better fighters, and having better attack coordination in large scale street brawls, but in reality many of the lessons lie in analyzing the un-sexy behind the scenes work. How did people raise money? How did they offer support? How did they deal with people’s families who were suddenly thrown into the mix? These are all hard questions, but our presenter does a good job at addressing them.

For previous report backs on the anti-fascist mobilization in Sacramento, go here, here, here, and here. Note, the voices of those asking questions during the Q and A have been cut. Also, Sacramento Antifa will be soon be announcing ways that people can further support those who were injured and also get some great swag in the process, so stay tuned!

Music: Cop on Fire, Run the Jewels, and Van Leeuwen feat. Rihanna.

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