principles

The Anarchist Action Network has agreed some basic principles and objectives for our work.

We have adopted the PGA Hallmarks. These are a set of guidelines that were agreed by anti-capitalist resistance movements from across the world who came together to form the “Peoples’ Global Alliance”. The Hallmarks were first created in 1998, but have been adapted since then. For more details about the PGA and the history of the hallmarks, see here. Here is the current version of the Hallmarks, which we have agreed:

  1. A very clear rejection of capitalism, imperialism and feudalism; all trade agreements, institutions and governments that promote destructive globalization.
  2. We reject all forms and systems of domination and discrimination including, but not limited to, patriarchy, racism and religious fundamentalism of all creeds. We embrace the full dignity of all human beings.
  3. A confrontational attitude, since we do not think that lobbying can have a major impact in such biased and undemocratic organisations, in which transnational capital is the only real policy-maker.
  4. A call to direct action and civil disobedience, support for social movements’ struggles, advocating forms of resistance which maximize respect for life and oppressed peoples’ rights, as well as the construction of local alternatives to global capitalism.
  5. An organisational philosophy based on decentralisation and autonomy.

We have also agreed a few additional principles. These are in line with the ideas of the PGA hallmarks, but make a few points more explicit for our network:

We are openly anti-capitalist. One of the main roles of our network, as we see it, is to highlight and target the ways in which exploitation and oppression are interconnected and systemic. We want to bring together people who are struggling against particular problems and issues (austerity, climate change, migration controls, globalisation, etc. — however important these are), and focus on the way these issues are part of the same capitalist system. See this page for more on what we mean by capitalism.

We respect a diversity of tactics. We aim to show solidarity with everyone who is fighting against capitalism, and whose actions are in line with our general principles (see the PGA hallmarks), whatever tactics they choose. For example, we will not stop supporting people just because their actions are labeled as “criminal” or “violent” by state authorities. Or, on the other hand, because they are accused of not going far enough.

We aim to make decisions by consensus. That means trying to make decisions that everyone in the network can agree to. For example, decisions by majority vote can often mean that a minority of people are simply ignored or left out. Instead, if we do really need to agree a general position as a whole network, then we should try to find one that respects everyone’s views and concerns, even if they are in a minority. That also includes thinking about the views of people who can’t get to meetings, or don’t shout as loudly.

A main aims of the network to help re-build an anti-capitalist movement in the UK and beyond.

If you would like to see more detail about decisions made at network meetings, see here.