Comment on the Accusations against Michael Schmidt
Response to Charges that He is a Fascist as Well as an Anarchist
For months there has been a heated discussion over charges that Michael Schmidt, author of well-known books about anarchism, is actually a fascist and "white nationalist." Now that the main statements are out on both sides, I have been waiting for an evaluation by some panel of reputable anarchist activists and theorists. As this has not happened, I am publishing my own conclusions.
When I first read the accusation that Michael Schmidt was a fascist and racist, I was astounded. I had met him and read his writings on anarchism. It seemed unlikely that he was really a fascist. Yet the people at AK Press, who had made the charge, were serious, sincere, anarchists, who had made great contributions to the movement (and had published one of my books). I could not believe—and do not believe—that they acted out of malice (against one of their own authors?). And I knew that people do strange things (consider the history of Ignacio Silone, the Italian socialist and author). So I have read all the accusatory research of Alexander Reid-Ross and Joshua Stephens (as agents of the AK Press Collective) along with Schmidt’s statements of defense, as well as many of the side comments. I have been waiting for some panel of respected anarchists to make a balanced judgement. Since this has not (yet?) happened, I will put out my own conclusions (so far).
The original accusation, by the AK Press Collective, was: “Michael Schmidt was an undercover fascist….We have received and compiled what we consider to be incontrovertible evidence that Michael Schmidt is a white nationalist trying to infiltrate the anarchist movement.
In effect, this charge of being “an undercover fascist [and] white nationalist trying to infiltrate the anarchist movement
” has been withdrawn. It is no longer repeated. The gap in time from the original accusation to its de facto
withdrawal has been unconscionable.
Instead, Schmidt is now charged with being both a (subjectively) sincere anarchist as well as some sort of fascist. Reid-Ross now writes, “His anarchist writings were never in question: the problem is that, in the usual style of National Anarchists, third positionists, and other neo-fascists, he has sought to combine anarchist ideas with those of fascists and white supremacists.
” This “combination” is supposedly due either to Schmidt’s holding a contradictory theory (as do the “national anarchists,” etc.), or to being psychologically mixed-up, or both.
The question is not whether Schmidt is a nice person or an obnoxious one. It is not whether his version of anarchism is the best one. (Personally I am in general political agreement with him, with some disputes—but this is irrelevant here.) Also the issue is not whether as a white person he has been influenced by racism and whether his work is sometimes affected by it. Of cause he has and it is (what else?). This is not an excuse for anyone but something to be watched out for. He is not accused of being a poor anarchist but of being a fascist.
Evidence for the Accusation
Reid-Ross and Stephens cite various pieces of evidence against Schmidt. This includes some racist assertions in a withdrawn document, jewelry and tattoos he may or may not have, the names of his dogs, and comments which anonymous people say he has made. There are various things he has written under his own name, as an anarchist or as a journalist. The meanings of these writings relies a great deal on how we interpret various statements and formulations.
The main evidence against Schmidt has always been the comments he has posted on fascist/white supremacist web sites. For approximately ten years he had generated a stream of comments which were vile, disgusting, racist rants. These were not under his own name but under assumed personas. The comments were not directed either to anarchists or to the general public but to the fascist milieu. There is no evidence he did any organizing among the fascists or that he tried to organize anarchists to become fascists.
He claims that the comments were made in order to establish his bona fides to the fascists, in order to do journalistic research. In fact, many anti-fascists have “trolled” fascist sites to get information. However, the quality of Schmidt’s comments were so vicious, yet thorough, that they raised questions about his actual motives to many people.
Reid-Ross and Stephens concluded, “…There is nothing in his online activity that, in principle, anyway, conflicts with a (perhaps staggeringly overzealous) long-con for the sake of investigation.
” But they do not accept this conclusion because Schmidt’s editor at the time of most of his writings—whom Schmidt had claimed would back him up—does not support his claims of editorial permission. In fact, his former editor expresses a great deal of personal hostility toward Schmidt! Schmidt responds that the editor must have forgotten. In any case, it is unclear whether the editor’s remarks refute the possibility that “in principle” Schmidt may have been carrying on a “long-con” against the fascists.
Evidence Against the Accusation
The main evidence against the accusation of racism and fascism is Schmidt’s decades of activity as an anarchist—his work with anarchists of various classes, nationalities, and races, to organize an anarchist movement in South Africa and elsewhere. And the series of articles, pamphlets, and books (some quite lengthy) he wrote promoting anarchism. These activities and writings were done under his own name, in his own person, addressed to a public interested in anarchism.
It is for this reason, if none other, that Schmidt’s accusers have dropped the original complaint that he is an outsider, a non-anarchist, really a fascist and racist, who was “trying to infiltrate the anarchist movement.
” Instead Reid-Ross now writes, “His anarchist writings were never in question.
” (This isn’t true but never mind.)
Reid-Ross then writes, “…The pages of his defense that are devoted to his anarchist pedigree…are mostly beside the point.
” No they are not. For several reasons.
The main thrust of Schmidt’s work (together with Lucien van der Walt) has been to reject the conception of anarchism as a European or Euro-American program. In Black Flame and elsewhere, he has consistently argued that anarchism as a movement has been an international phenomena. “Anarchism and syndicalism played a crucial role in…fighting racial prejudice and discrimination, and developed into a multinational and multiracial movement that contributed to the history of unionism, peasant movements, and the Left among people of color.
” (Schmidt & van der Walt, Black Flame; 309)
Anarchism, he writes, has been fought for by many nationalities, races, and peoples, and on almost all continents. He argues that it is arising again, throughout the world, among the world’s peoples and the international working class. This is not a view which is consistent with a “white nationalist” concept of “national anarchism.”
Similarly, in Black Flame, Schmidt and van der Walt discus the national liberation struggles of oppressed nations. They neither cheer on the movements’ nationalisms nor do they oppose the struggles of the oppressed peoples (in effect, capitulating to imperialism). Instead they propose that anarchists “participate in national liberation struggles in order to…displace nationalism with a politics of national liberation through class struggle.
” (310) This too is inconsistent with white supremacy.
Schmidt’s writings also clash with the anti-democratic historical trend in anarchism. Many anarchists, in the past and present, have counterposed anarchism to “democracy.” Some have seen anarchism as a program for superior individuals to be free of domination by “common people.” George Woodcock summarized: “No conception of anarchism is further from the truth than that which regards it as an extreme forms of democracy…. Anarchism advocates the sovereignty of the person….Anarchism, far from being democracy carried to its logical end, is much nearer to aristocracy, universalized and purified.
” (Anarchism: A History of Libertarian Ideas and Movements; 33-34) A great many other anarchists may be quoted making similar statements, e.g., “Anarchism, then, represents not the most radical form of democracy, but an altogether different paradigm of collective action
.” (Uri Gordon, Anarchy Alive!; 70)
Imagine if Schmidt had written such a statement! Instead, what his Black Flame says is, “Anarchism would be nothing less than the most complete realization of democracy—democracy in the fields, factories, and neighborhoods…based on economic and social equality.
(I am not—repeat NOT—claiming that Woodcock [or Gordon] is a fascist! This would be like someone arguing that since I am known for writing that anarchists can learn from aspects of Marxism, such as its political economy, then I must be a Stalinist.)
In short, to claim that Schmidt’s anarchist writings are “beside the point,” is indeed to miss the point. While Schmidt may have made all sorts of errors in his theorizing, there are key areas, central to his work, in which he adopted a view of anarchism which was as far away from fascism as possible.
The original charge that Michael Schmidt was a fascist-racist infiltrator into the anarchist movement has been abandoned. It should never have been made.
The other charge is of somehow being both pro-anarchism and pro-fascism. It is primarily based on Schmidt’s postings to fascist sites. It is contradicted by his history as an anarchist organizer, activist, and scholar. Much of his writings are far from what might be expected from a fascist sympathizer, in their internationalism and support for workers’ democracy. Considering the rule of being innocent until proven guilty, I would give Schmidt a Scottish verdict of “Not Proven.” I believe that AK Press should continue to publish Schimdt’s books, which have been so useful for the anarchist movement.
*written for www.Anarkismo.net
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As much as I admire your work, Wayne, I have to say that this is one of the most simplistic and superficial analyses of the Schmidt situation I have seen yet. You have managed to reduce the five-part article by Ross and Stephens (and two addendums by Ross) to, essentially, “Michael Schmidt wrote some things on fascist websites.”
Either you are a very bad reader or you have willfully left out a whole range of evidence. You have, in a very doctrinaire fashion, limited yourself to an entirely textual analysis that amounts to an equally simplistic “but he wrote (or co-wrote) a lot of anarchist stuff too!” The real world is far more complex than that, Wayne.
Your analysis completely avoids such basic facts as:
1) Schmidt’s fascist alter ego both joining conversations among anarchists on Schmidt’s Facebook page and contacting South African anarchists in an attempt to lure them toward National Anarchism.
2) Schmidt’s description of his tattoos (to his fascist audience) as widely shared symbols of white pride on Stormfront, tattoos that he actually has, which can be seen in multiple photos.
Just these two things alone have been repeated so many times online that I can’t imagine that you missed them. There are many others. I must assume that your avoidance of them is intentional.
Your basic logic—that one cannot be both an anarchist and a fascist or white nationalist—betrays your insufficient understanding of the contemporary forms that neo-fascism takes. I suggest reading up on National Anarchism, National Bolshevism, and Third Positionists. While you and I know how deeply flawed and contradictory such ideologies are, there are plenty of people like Schmidt who disagree.
As a life-long organized anarchist partial to both especifismo and platformism, I in no way considered Schmidt’s undercover fascism to reflect upon those traditions themselves. The real test, though, will be how living, breathing platfomists—actual individuals and organizations—deal with his betrayal. Doing a poor job of it will damage our traditions far more than Schmidt's actions ever could.
Respectfully, I have to say that I think this is precisely what you have done here. In this situation, we need serious and principled responses from our organized anarchist traditions. If we circle our wagons, rely entirely on doctrine, wear blinders to the full range of the accusations, attack the messengers—all of which have so far been the main responses I’ve seen—we will isolate ourselves from the anarchist and radical movements. We will become irrelevant. And Schmidt will have won.
I hope others are more up to the task.
I agree that this response is symplistic and, l would say in fact, inadequate.
Part of this piece relies on the fact that very unfortunately, the authors of the original „expose” on the AK Press profile claimed that MS is a fascist and an infiltrator, neither or which they effectively proved. When l originally saw these accusations, l really had hope that it wasn't another case of people using the „fascist” label too easily, but it looks like this might have been the case. However, it seems that Wayne is purposefully ignoring the very problematic things said and done by MS and, in this way, is acting to push these things under the carpet.
I am quite scared of what some „panel” of anarchist experts might look like, not the least because some of them are really feigning expertise or just defending their ideological tendency. However, if we were to call on the opinions of some anarchists, l think that the ones that have either made considerable study of the modern right-wing movements or national anarchists or have been involved in fighting against them migh be a good place to start. And, from what l have heard from a lot of those people, l suppose they would not be so quick to dismiss the issue.
In terms of any basic understanding of national anarchism, l am afraid that the author of this piece seems not to be very familiar with it, since there is no contradiction with portraying anarchism as a global movement and espousing national anarchism. National anarchists are certainly international, (but not internationalists or anti-nationalists). It seems like we are dealing with a claim that certain combinations of ideas are „not possible” - however they exist and have existed and it seems that MS also has made these combinations.
Understandably, anarchists around the world have been shocked that these combinations have come from a well-regarded activists, although for us in Eastern Europe, they are more mundane combinations which activists and organizations have made more frequently. This article does nothing to address the problematic issues seen by many: the racist document distributed in ZACF, which also has an unbearable vanguardist tone; the mainstream press articles with repeat racist „black genocide” language of manipulation; the using of the Stormfront profile to call racists to decend on SA – something that is not at all useful for „research”; the mixing of anarchist, racist and national ideas in these articles and the organization of a separate forum; asking anarchist filmmakers to include national anarchists, etc. etc. What this article does, is to attempt to rehabilitate MS because of what the author considers his worthwhile writings. Because of them, we are basically being told to give the benefit of the doubt to MS, even when we see that what he was writing was completely unacceptable. We are being told to believe his stories about the undercover work, which were both denied by his editor and which, quite frankly, neither hold up or make sense.
Perhaps some people would like such a world where people who commit pen to paper and make themselves experts are never questioned but that would not be very much in line with the anarchist tradition. A tradition where we all can question our theorists and activists, from the sexist Proudhon, to Kropotkin who supported the South in the America Civil War, to Montsenney who joined the government. Anarchist theorists are not gods beyong reproach and the world will not fall apart for criticizing them where criticism is due. And the case of Michael Schmidt is definitely one where the criticism, if not always semantically accurate, is deserved.
Actually what I had written was that “Schmidt…had generated a stream of…vile, disgusting, racist rants,” not merely that he “wrote some things on fascist websites.”
I do not find the evidence sufficient for Schmidt actually trying to “lure” or organize anarchists into fascism. And while he has tattoos, the evidence that they are really white nationalist tattoos is also not sufficient (his description on the fascist website is not proof). This is why I did not go into these murky waters. I continue to believe that Schmidt’s postings on fascist sites is the real issue, as it has been since the beginning.
I did not believe the general statement “that one cannot be both an anarchist and a fascist or white nationalist.” Instead I argued that it was unlike that one would spend major effort opposing a Euro-centric view of anarchism and be a “white nationalist,” and similarly that it was unlikely for someone to advocate a democratic, equalitarian, view of anarchism (contrary to many other anarchists) and be a fascist.
Not perhaps impossible, but very unlikely. But then so much of the evidence against Schmidt is circumstantial anyway. As I wrote, I do not find the accusations against him to be reasonably proven.
BTW, when I referred to Reid-Ross and Stephens as “agents” of the AK Press Collective, I meant that the Collective appeared to be depending on their research. But I should not have implied that RR & S were speaking for the Collective, as in the change in the accusation from Schmidt being a “fascist infiltrator” to his being some combination of fascist and anarchist. The Collective has not issued a further statement since their original announcement.
" I have been waiting for an evaluation by some panel of reputable anarchist activists and theorists."
What is this all about? A possible or already formed "tribunal"?
Jon Bekken wrote that he was unable to post these remarks here due to some technical problem. He gave permission for it to be posted.--WP
I do not find the evidence compelling either way on the question of the basic nature of Schmidt's political practice. (Wayne's conclusion that the original claim that he was a fascist infiltrator is wholly unsupported - to such an extent that those who originally raised it no longer do so - is clearly correct. And frankly, to make such an explosive charge without evidence to support it raises fundamental questions about the reliability of the evidence on offer and the ways it has been interpreted.)
The claim that he contacted anarchists and tried to recruit them to fascism or "national anarchism" (a contradiction in terms, though many clearly anti-racist and anti-fascist "anarchists" have attempted to reconcile nationalism and anarchism) was asserted, but I did not see compelling evidence supporting it (though I can not claim to have followed every link offered on either side). It is clear that Schmidt used an unfortunate racialized rhetoric in his ZACF document, though he argues that he was trying to make a specific point about historical developments in a society where "race" signifies as much as anywhere in the world. From this, the attack on him claims (without offering the slightest evidence in support) that he purged blacks from the Federation.
It is difficult to know what to make of the competing characterizations of Schmidt's anarchist work in South Africa without hearing from those in the best position to evaluate it -- those who worked with him in the ZACF and related organizations.
Much of the argument against Schmidt takes his writings on the fascist websites, to which he never attached his name, as reflecting his true self, while dismissing his anarchist writings, issued under his name. For example, we are repeatedly told as if it were established fact that Schmidt voted for a neofascist party in the elections, but the only evidence for this is a post which he claims is part of his undercover work. I do not know that such a claim is provable short of a confession, but it certainly has not been proven. It is also problematic to cite, as Wayne does, coauthored works as representing Schmidt's views as it is certainly possible that the sections in question were primarily authored by (or at least heavily influenced by) their co-author. I have read only one book (Cartography) that appears under Schmidt's sole byline, and while I did not find it a very useful or interesting book I did not see anything in it compatible with the notion that he is a secret white supremacist. (It explicitly argues that anarchism is a global movement.)
Much of this situation seems to me ambiguous. The attack on Schmidt is clearly embedded in an anti-syndicalist/class-based orientation that is not in my view true to the main current of anarchism. Working-class anarchism has always been explicitly anti-racist, and syndicalists in the U.S. and South Africa actively worked to build multi-racial organizations. This ideological bias clearly frames much of the argument (especially visible in the fifth installment), and raises questions about the underlying motivation. The authors are also clearly hostile to the practice of journalism, seeing an insistence on telling stories through details (fundamental to the journalistic ethos) as proof of deception. And yet, to me, observing at quite a remove, I am not wholly persuaded by Schmidt's account of why he set up the accounts and posted to the racist/fascist websites. I find the argument that he was undertaking undercover work quite plausible as his conscious motivation, but it does seem that he took things rather further than this would have required and that there may well have been a fascination or other perhaps subconscious elements in play.
So I am troubled by some of the material that has been made public, and uncomfortable with the apparent motivations of those who raised these concerns. I have my suspicions of what is going on, but do not believe the evidence is clear enough to justify my publicly declaring them. I realize the comrades in South Africa have urgent constructive work that they are undertaking, but I believe they are in the best position to shed light on what is really going on here.
Associate Professor of Communication
This is the second time Wayne has wilfully misrepresented my critique of democracy as coming from the right. My point has always been that democracy is *not enough* from an anarchist point of view. I have never criticised the idea of popular empowerment that animates calls for radical democracy, but only the component of enforcement that I associate with the term. My argument has been that any viable conception of the term democracy must include a way to enforce collectively-binding decisions, that is, a standing apparatus of rationalised coercion (also known as the State). To decontextualise this as somehow implying an elitist or aristocratic conception is simply dishonest. I am calling for *more* autonomy and decentralisation than any notion of democracy can live up to. Wayne should really know better than to quote me out of context and pretend that I'm arguing the exact opposite of what I am.
1) Mitch: I was referring to some “possible” panel, which no one has formed.
2) Akai: I never wrote that well-known anarchists should not be questioned. In fact I fave frequently written about the weaknesses in the anarchist tradition, including Proudhon’s pathological hatred of women, Bakunin’s anti-Semitism and conspiracy-fantasies, Kropotkin’s support for the Entente in World War I, and the Spanish anarchist majority entering the Popular Front government with liberal parties and Stalinists. (Kropotkin did not supported the South in the Civil War.) I am all for criticizing Michael Schmidt for his weaknesses. The question is whether he is some sort of fascist.
3) Bekken: I agree that much about the dispute is “ambiguous,” including statements made by Schmidt. I did not say that he was clearly innocent of the accusations. Indeed I left open the possibility that he had made racist statements. But I wrote that I did not find sufficient evidence to support a conclusion that he is a fascist.
4) Uri: I did not represent your “critique of democracy as coming from the right.” On the contrary, I specifically stated that you were not a fascist. I could go into a discussion here of what you actually wrote about democracy, but I won’t. The point is that a prominent anarchist (you) has stated that he did not regard anarchism as a form of democracy. I asked, What if Schmidt had written this? Wouldn’t he be denounced as showing his fascist tendencies? But instead Schmidt asserted his belief in anarchism as democracy. It was not about you.
Right, Wayne, you wrote that “Schmidt…had generated a stream of…vile, disgusting, racist rants.” You immediately followed it up with “These were not under his own name but under assumed personas. The comments were not directed either to anarchists or to the general public but to the fascist milieu.” In other words, you negated the importance of your first statement.
If you actually believe that Schmidt is a vile racist, here’s how you begin your piece: “Michael Schmidt is a vile racist. He should be removed from the anarchist movement and I hereby break all ties with him.” You can then feel free to nit-pick over
• the meaning of the word infiltrator,
• whether and to what degree AK Press’ initial statement matched the conclusions of Ross and Stephens,
• whether the fact that Schmidt tried to use his one of fascist personas to convince anarchist filmmakers to interview white nationalists for a documentary was “sufficient evidence” that he was trying to bring fascism into the anarchist movement
• whether Schmidt “really” has white nationalist tattoos, when one can read hundreds of posts by other fascists on Stormfront ascribing the same meaning to his tattoos that Schmidt does.
It is a real shame that your shoddy, ill-informed statement is probably going to represent, for many people, the position of Anarkismo itself.
Again, the only way for organized anarchism to lessen the damage that Schmidt has caused, let alone to learn any lessons that might prevent this sort of entryist garbage in the future, is for platformists and especifists to come forward with clear and principled statements distancing themselves from Schmidt and (re)affirming a clear antiracist and antifascist position. So far there has been almost none of that. There's been a lot of criticism of AK Press and Ross-Stephens, a lot of screaming whenever anyone seems to take a swipe at class-struggle anarchism (as if we weren’t used to that), a lot of sarcasm and dismissive jokes on social media. Meanwhile, Schmidt himself pretty much get a pass because we’re all too busy worrying about whether an individualist or insurrectionist might score a point against us.
What we need is precisely the opposite of what you’ve provided.
It must take a great amount of confirmation bias for people to be able to argue that they are unconvinced by the reams of evidence that have been produced over the course of this whole debacle. To reiterate some of the core points that Wayne (whose articles I usually find well-researched and argued) and co. pass over in silence:
- Schmidt really did vote for the FF+. The authors of the expose have stated that this was confirmed by members of ZACF and documented on their internal mailing list. Even if this was the only fact we had on Schmidt, it's incredibly damning.
- Schmidt's tattoos are described in detail on Stormfront in a way that completely matches up with the available photographs. His later justification of these tattoos in his appalling 'rebuttal' does not match up to the photographs in nearly as coherent a fashion. Are we to believe that he fabricated the Stormfront description of his tattoos even though it maps to the actual tattoos far more closely than his post-hoc contortions? Again, astonishing confirmation bias.
- Schmidt, via a Facebook sock puppet he has admitted to running, contacted the documentary film makers who were making the film on anarchism a few years back and harassed them to include national anarchists in their documentary. Surely this alone underscores that he was not infiltrating or doing research on the far right?
- Instead of focusing on the one partially retracted claim in the expose - that Schmidt was actually infiltrating anarchist movements from the far right - why not focus on the remaining substance of the expose: the guy has clearly drifted very far rightwards over the years and now holds racist, fascist views completely antithetical to the anarchist ones he possibly simultaneously still holds (confirmation bias - it's a real thing folks!)
- Crucially, why have ZACF and co-author vd Walt not said anything at all about this beyond vd Walt's obvious sock puppet on Libcom trying to muddy the waters? If one of your trusted, long-time comrades was being hauled over the coals and accused of holding racist and fascist views, surely you would leap into the fray straight away, throwing caution to the wind? The stunning silence from Schmidt's comrades speaks volumes, whatever their empty claims about coordinating a meeting to discuss the possibility of convening an inquiry into the accusations in order to develop a framework for producing a strategy to liaise about the drafting of a public memo noting the writing of an official response to the expose that will be published at some yet-to-be-determined date.
To put this all very simply, my experience so far has been that most of the people continuing to defend Schmidt and crying 'evidence is insufficient' are only able to do so because they're avoiding any of the more unequivocal points raised in the expose and focusing instead on marginalia and inessential side points.
A reply to Jon Bekken. First of all, l hope you are not using the "l am in academia" tactic of attaching information about your position at the end of your comment and hoping it will carry more weight with your readers.
(Oh the comforts of having a job where you can sign both your real name and workplace without fearing you'll get the boot!)
l would just reply to some of your arguments. The first one is that, yes, unfortunately some things in life were heard between people and cannot be "proven" to a third party. There is just plenty of that. l am sure you are taking the position that hearsay arguments must be discounted - but this is not being done consistantly because basically, a lot of what Schmidt says is just his word - like what other people claim is their word. l do not think it is fair that people are calling for the opinions of ZACF, Lucien etc., but basically being dismissive of other people who have had some contact with the people in question. l mean, one of the people who has been crucial in providing info to ARR is an ex-member of ZACF. ln short, you are saying that one side counts, the other is suspect, despite the fact that they may also be in the category of people who know the situation very well.
Further, you outright suspect that people have ulterior motives for this whole attack. Yes, granted, one can see some bias and suspect this as a motivation. l also suspected ARR had some problem with syndicalism but as it turns out he is a Wobbly. But then when you look more closely at reactions, you see that this theory does not work very neatly.
You wrote "The attack on Schmidt is clearly embedded in an anti-syndicalist/class-based orientation". So, how can you explain the fact that there are anarchosyndicalists and class-based anarchists who are criticizing Schmidt?
For me, these type of neat explanations do not fly. On another article here, which l only recently became aware of, Schmidt himself refers to my criticisms of a hierarchical group where some members have too close relations with fascists as probably related to my view as an anti-organizational synthesist. Really? ls this the level of argumentation that people resort to when they are out of real arguments? Because that looks to me like putting a false label on somebody as a way to say that somebody has the "wrong view" and sweep the real issue under the carpet.
Yeah, as l said, there might have been some other motivations, but once the things got out, like the racist document people could judge things based on MS's words. To tell the truth, l had heard of the document well before it was released and it confirmed to me what people had said about it. so l could see people were not making a problem up.
Anyway, that's just my extra 2 cents on the matter. Stick to what MS actually said and did and don't try to go the ulterior motive route.
I will try to avoid vitriolic jargon present in some of the comments above because I find it useless, obscuring the facts as opposed to trying to bring some light out of a most ambiguous and confused situation.
First of all, I don't think that Wayne addresses all of the possible issues here at stake and I do think he may seem as addressing lightly a most serious situation. That said, he raises a fair point: that there is no evidence of Michael Schmidt being a fascist infiltrator, nor that he was actively trying to recruit for fascist movements. The original claim has not been sufficiently proven. And one may also raise the issue that the claim was originally made in a very irresponsible way, setting the accusation well before the evidence was available -and worse, the evidence would not support the accusation when it eventually saw the light.
Now, that said, it is clear that Michael Schmidt has been developing some very worrying and disturbing trends over the last years, which have alienated him from his comrades. He is no longer a member of ZACF, or of the anarkismo collective, so to try to put the onus on the platformist tradition is also dishonest -as dishonest as claiming that AK press, because of having published some of his material, is then a "fascist" enterprise. In particular, I've personally found disturbing a number of articles dealing with the racial question -which shows, at the very least, some racialised or insensitive approach to a most sensitive issue, and at worst, racist tendencies. Some of these articles have been sent to anarkismo and after discussing them, our editorial collective has decided not to publish them and have raised issues on some of them to the author himself. Yes, some of the stuff on race is very disturbing, and a lot of that seems to be coming from an ultra position against the ANC. To what extent is it a case of MS trying to be provocative or politically incorrect (in a gruesome way) in the face of dominant discourses, and to what extent they represent the bias of white privilege, is a matter of debate -but I think both issues are at play here. Similarly, anti-communist or anti-left arguments among some anarchists turned to be, at different points of history, quite right-wing (for a prime example, check the website of El Libertario, the Venezuelan anarchist paper). Some anarchists have often pushed the argument against the left so hard, that they have sometimes ended objectively siding with the right wing. In South Africa's case, this has other implications, particularly when coming from a white background, etc.
But there maybe a bit more to it. I did not know about his secret persona on a white supremacist website and I find that extremely disturbing, particularly since the explanation he gives is incredible in extreme and for such a prolific writer, having produced nothing in all those years of covert work seems implausible. On these grounds alone, I am unqualified to offer my support because I think there have been very serious issues at stake and there has been some disturbing racial arguments coupled with hidden activities which are very suspicious. Yet, I repeat, that there is no solid evidence of this being a deliberate work of infiltration, but a case of someone drifting to deplorable positions with time AFTER separating formally from the milieu where you belonged for a time.
But Bekken is right to point out that there are motivations here beyond the purely ideological-political. Some are taking this as an opportunity to have a go at the evil "platformists", funnily, in a way no different than fascists or racists in Europe react against Jihadist attacks: all Muslims need to condemn in the loudest possible terms the acts of other Muslims (surprisingly enough, the same onus is not on Christians when one of their fellow Jesus worshippers carries on terror attacks, like Breivik in Norway). The comment above is inappropriate in extreme, for exactly this reason: "Again, the only way for organized anarchism to lessen the damage that Schmidt has caused, let alone to learn any lessons that might prevent this sort of entryist garbage in the future, is for platformists and especifists to come forward with clear and principled statements distancing themselves from Schmidt and (re)affirming a clear antiracist and antifascist position". Really? well, he hasn't been with us for a number of years and we re-affirm our anti-fascist and anti-racist position in everything we write on anarkismo or in our day to day activities wherever we are based. You need an awful lot of nerve to demand this from anonimity, and we do not accept this type of blackmail that reflects an ideological bias. Our actions and integrity cannot be reduced to the sorry affair of Schmidt. Period.
We need to learn the lessons of this affair, which I think go beyond platformism and indeed beyond anarchism. But we cannot do such a thing when we cannot take a step back, think clearly, and become entangles into a web of personality clashes, petty quarrels, sectarianism and ideological bias. Sure thing, I do not take this lightly and I think that we need a serious reflection about this, but I do not see it coming from the vitriol of this thread.
ps. Akai, there is no need to play out the working-class chauvinism line here -it is probable that Bekken;s work email has an automatic signature and that when Wayne copied and pasted, included it. To try to see this as a tactic to add authority to your statement is, to say the least, paranoid and shows our difficulty to get a serious and proper debate. In such a condition, it is impossible, and the argument will be won by he or she who can shout louder. A not very libertarian way to solve a disagreement, if you ask me.
Before we start, you yourself can tone down your hate language because some half comical line that l HOPE Jon wasn't using his title is just a general comment on how people do that and not a paranoid rave against Jon.
That said, l am correct that this topic started about 3 months ago and this is the first time that any member of the Anarkismo collective (assuming you are one - it sounds that way) has publically said that yes, MS had written some things which concerned us and seemed racist and we are not cooperating with him?
Numerous people have, over these three months, said that the silence coming from those who cooperated with him has been very curious, to say the least. And now we have a new fact (because l sincerely do not think you are lying): people who collaborated with MS also saw problematic issues with him, but did not bother to say anything.
This is especially troubling given the fact that some conversations directly related to whether or not MS harboured any racist views.
l am not saying that you have to agree with the authors of the expose or the allegations that he was a fascist infiltrator. l also do not see the last as either proven or likely. But my honest opinion is that staying quiet was a really bad judgment.
Now you are getting all defensive about people who blame everything on platformism. True, MS does not speak for platformism, so it cannot be done and you are right to point that out. But what information are people seeing here. Wayne who largely brushes the issues under the carpet and Anarkismo folks who also knew something was terribly wrong with Schmidt but chose not to comment on it. Let's use our brains here. How do you think people are going to see this stuff? l mean, l know you, l believe you are bothered by these views, but when others acted to warn people, open a discussion or just show that these things are not acceptable for our movement, you observed and withheld what l assume many people would see as key information.
Bad judgment in my opinion.
Finally, as l pointed out before, l am not involved in any scheme to get people against the class struggle or organized anarchism, so l am not involved in some evil plot with non-organizational types to take down Schmidt. However, at this point, l would not blame any @s if they became suspicious of people's motivations - not only the authors, but of yours.
Thank you in advance for leaving words like "paranoid", "sectarian" etc. out of your reply. Come on - you can have a debate without reaching for that packet of depreciating vocabulary.
Sorry to come back here with another question, but...
An article on this portal came to my attention: http://www.anarkismo.net/article/27678
lt was written by MS and posted here last year. l wrote some comments yesterday, since there were a number of mistakes in the article and some biased points.
What l am wondering, given your claim that people who associated with Schmidt became aware of his inclinations and changing opinions over the last years, was whether or not anybody gave second thoughts to publishing that article?
Some background to this article: the defense made by MS related to a text written not by any anonymous person, nor any "lWA correspondent" (as is claimed) but by the Russian organization KRAS. This text was distributed amongst comrades in July 2011. During 2013-2014, many discussions took place in both Russia and Ukraine on the situation in Ukraine and the actions of various anarchist groups and several forums and independent people published various texts, among those, the criticism of RKAS. By the time the MS text was up, RKAS had already disbanded itself and the discussion around E. Europe at least was which organizations had gone which way. Various members of RKAS had already gone different ways, not of them not so nice.
For some reason, instead of checking out the facts, we get a rather distorted history and the interesting conspiracy theory that these criticisms of RKAS must be due to some problems of "synthesist anarchists" who cannot stand organization. Both the authors of the first text and myself pointed out that there were some problems, the first also referring to problems on the national question... but the anarkismo collective thought what? That a person who had moved to unacceptable views, doesn't know Russian or Ukrainian and doesn't live in the area is a better judge of the situation?
The article l linked to makes ample use of trying to discredit ideas because they belong to "synthesist anarchists" - but what's worse is that MS is using these words against anarchocommunists.
l am sort of wondering how that kind of stuff gets by the editors of anarkismo at the same time that you cry foul because some folks lump all platformists in the same bag? Seems like a double standard to me.
ln any case, back to the question - is MS allowed to publish here? Or did you think that defense of RKAS was especially good?
a. Anarkismo is a collective endeavour and in order to have a official statement we need to discuss things, etc. That means tat having collectively agreed positions take time. Sorry we cannot operate at a faster pace, but this is the way we work. And as you may imagine, we have zillions of more urgent and pressing needs to discuss than the Schmidt's affair. We've had internal discussions and we decided to wait because it took actually months for all the positions to come out.
b. We have had internal discussions, and we did debate intensely some articles (in particular two), and some of us took a very strong position against publishing those articles. At the time we had no idea of the whole set of accusations leveled against MS. Sorry, but we discussed this with the people that we saw fit to discuss it ie., the people within the collective.
c. We have decided on a one to one basis which articles to publish and which not to publish. It is the same with everyone else who post their articles on our site. We sometimes agree, sometimes we don't, sometimes some agree, others don't. You may disagree with the article written by MS on RKAS or whatever, but the fact is that this article has nothing racist about it. If people disagree, that's why they can add comments. The article, being from 2014, is an article which was published before the whole scandal broke out, and before we received questionable articles (which happened between late December 2014 and February 2015, before he stopped submitting), and at a time when he was still publishing with other anarchist editorials, including AK Press. There is nothing mysterious about it.
d. Wayne's opinions are Wayne's opinions. Mine are mine. When anarkismo arrives a position, it will be made public. I'm sorry that we are not as fast as others would like. That is the nature of our own site and we will not rush to take a decision because of what people may think. They can go think whatever they want, I am not particularly arsed about it.
d. A comment, in order to be comical, needs to be funny, not aggressively ad hominem.
I certainly did not mean to “put the onus on the platformist tradition.” I am sorry if that was unclear, but I think there is a big difference between blaming Anarkismo for Schmidt and suggesting that they take a principled stand about the situation. I think the same is true of everyone who worked closely with him over the years, including ZACF, AK Press, Lucien, and, yes, to some degree, the platformist/organized traditions in general. He may not be our fault, but he is (or was) one of our own, and we bear a certain responsibility to speak up.
Unfortunately, we have focused very little on Schmidt himself. We have, like Wayne, focused on everything that Ross and Stephens may have failed to prove. We have, like Jon, created imaginary conspiracies to explain the accusations. We have, like you, offered excuses like “he is no longer a member of our collective” to partially wash our hands of any special responsibility to address the situation.
Again, I don’t think that platformism is at fault—just as I don’t see Mussolini as the fault of syndicalism, or consider individualist anarchism as responsible for the various fascists that have arisen from their ranks. These slimy bastards will exploit any ideological or political opening they find. But when a fascist (or white nationalist or vile racist) emerges from our ranks, we need to respond with more than excuses, misdirection, and attacks upon the messengers. Not simply because of Schmidt himself, but because we need to understand how this shit can happen.
I think that the people who are using their 20/20 hindsight to condemn Anarkismo for not having figured out Schmidt’s “obvious” motives are wrong. Schmidt has been playing this game for a long time—perhaps as far back as the early 2000s—and no one wrote any damning exposés. No one publicly declared him a racist, let alone a fascist. People can get on their high horses now and proclaim that they knew it all along, but where were they five years ago? Ten? The fact is that people only recently began putting the pieces together. Reid-Ross and Stephens spoke to the people who had harbored fragmentary doubts; they uncovered Schmidt’s multiple aliases; and they made sense of the patterns among his various writings under both various pseudonyms and his public name.
We are only now trying to grapple with what it means for us. We should cut one another some slack, but we should also stop with the excuses, the ideological tit-for-tat, and the sort of blindered “analysis” that more prominent members of our traditions have offered so far.
Jose, you wrote this:
"Now, that said, it is clear that Michael Schmidt has been developing some very worrying and disturbing trends over the last years, which have alienated him from his comrades." and then you speak of articles you received. Later you specified that these articles, which were rejected, were received only in the last 6 months. Had that been clear, l wouldn't have asked the question as l did. However, the fact is that you didn't wait for the anarkismo collective to make a statement to eventually speak out, as an individual. So....
Just to say l don't find these "we had better things to do" arguments convincing and now will sign out of this discussion here as l have heard enough to come to my conclusions.
Wayne! To quote from AFAB, above, it seems to me very important that you engage with (for example):
"• whether the fact that Schmidt tried to use his one of fascist personas to convince anarchist filmmakers to interview white nationalists for a documentary was “sufficient evidence” that he was trying to bring fascism into the anarchist movement
• whether Schmidt “really” has white nationalist tattoos, when one can read hundreds of posts by other fascists on Stormfront ascribing the same meaning to his tattoos that Schmidt does."
The fact that you skipped addressing all of that and more in your response speaks to me of hasty thinking and shoddy reflection. It shouldn't be so difficult to get Schmidt to confirm or deny which tattoos he has, for example.
As for wanting to withhold judgment until you can be sure, Anarkismo is still hosting that ridiculous, dishonest hit piece against CrimethInc. that you put up a decade ago, so the bar really can't be that high. For heaven's sake let's not drag this out much longer.
Everyone is assuming that the authors of the essays accusing Michael of being a fascists also stated that he was a "fascist infiltrator", the exact denomination was a "white nationalist trying to infiltrate the anarchist movement". Being a fascist and a fascist infiltrator are not the same thing. They never said that. That was stated by someone from the AK Press collective on Facebook and it was clearly formulated incorrectly. The authors of the essays should have said that they never claimed Michael was a "fascist infiltrator" but they didn't, I would guess, to protect AK Press for this huge error.
So it is falso that, as Wayne Price stated "the original charge that Michael Schmidt was a fascist-racist infiltrator into the anarchist movement has been abandoned. It should never have been made." I just want to clarify that they never made that statement so they could not have abandoned it.
I'll admit to a little bit of fascination with Schmidtgate but the really interesting thing about it is the fascination with parsing minute positions from ideological strongholds. Wayne's piece reads like a desperate plea to just have Black Flame continue to be published rather than an honestmy liberal 'innocent until proven guilty' defense of the man. On that I completely agree with Wayne that Black Flame is an important opus. However, Schmidt is a, most likely, confused racist. That is the kindest conclusion one could come to.
I realize I'm not saying anything very meaningful here but I wanted to post so that folks would stop emailing me links to this discussion with high exclamation point content. Apparently, everyone likes slowing down and looking at the wreck on the side of the road. This one isn't so bad. The book is fine. One author has already been discarded. There's little real controversy here other than why it took someone on another continent to out behavior people clearly knew about.
It isn't an opportunity to lambaste class struggle. It isn't an opportunity to say synthesists or whatever have their share of creepy wackos.
Now I'm going back to my retirement from a movement of drama addicts.
Jose Antonio wrote, “I don't think that Wayne addresses all of the possible issues here at stake and I do think he may seem as addressing lightly a most serious situation. …it is clear that Michael Schmidt has been developing some very worrying and disturbing trends over the last years.”
He is correct that my little piece focused entirely on the charges against Schmidt. It did not discuss Schmidt’s political development, from the proletarian democracy and internationalism of Black Flame. I concluded that I did not think that Schmidt was an “infiltrator,” but that the broader charge of being a white nationalist and confused anarchist/fascist were not proven wrong so much as that they were "Not Proven" as true. And that a person should be regarded as innocent until proven guilty.
I do agree with Jose Antonio that Michael Schmidt’s politics show some “disturbing trends.” For example, his denial that Muslims were oppressed internationally and specially in Europe. This ties in with his mistaken labeling of jihadists as “fascists.” While they share a number of traits with fascists, there are distinct differences which makes this label an anachronism. In general, he has tended recently to equate the violence, racism, and nationalism of the oppressed with that of the oppressor. While racism by the oppressor serves to justify oppression, racism by the oppressed serves to mislead the oppressed in fighting their oppression. Both are wrong but serve different functions. Of course, these are mixed up with other factors, such as the Afrikaner workers denying their own exploitation, due to racism, or the Black South Africans resenting Zimbabwean immigrants, thus supporting their own oppression.
Renzo Forero is playing with words. To call someone an “undercover fascist” and then assert that he “is a white nationalist trying to infiltrate the anarchist movement,” is the same as saying that he is an infiltrating fascist.
I do not know why Duke thinks I am not honest about saying that Michael is “innocent until proven guilty.” But he is right that I think that Black Flame should be published, along with its as-yet-unpublished sequel. Hell, AK Press has published collections of writings of Proudhon and Kropotkin—even though Proudhon was a crazed misogynist and anti-semite and Kropotkin an all-out supporter of Allied imperialism in the First World War. While I am not putting Schmidt up with P. and K., founders of anarchism, I do think that the books he co-authored are very valuable to the movement.
To Artie: As my essay says, these are just the kinds of things I am not getting into, which Ross-Reid used five (5!) installments to cover. They are murky he-said/they-said issues, matters of interpretation, and obscure reference. How in hell am I going to examine Schmidt’s tattoos and ascertain what they mean to him? I still believe that the main reason Schmidt has been charged with fascism and white nationalism is his Internet postings as a fascist. That is, in terms of the charges brought against him, not in terms of his overall political development which Jose Antonio raises.
Do you think that the 2008 Schmidt ZACF memo is vile and disgusting?
And do you support Schmidt's explanations of its content (as distinct from his disavowal) in his social media statement and autobiographical defense? If so, which parts do you support?
Hi all, all I want to say is that I agree with Wayne on the need to publish the second part of Black Flame. It is a very good book, Lucien is not to blame, and most importantly, if you publish Proudhon (Bakunin expressed anti-semite views as well) or Kropotkin, why not Schmidt's book? The man may be a hard pill to swallow but that doesn't mean there in no benefit in what he wrote, at least some of it. We can't throw the baby with the bathtub.
There's a ton of Schmidt Stormfront posts you can read with Google Advanced Search and his username "Karelianblue" (in a Google search bar, just search "karelianblue site:stormfront.org). You can add keywords in (eg, "karelianblue anc site:stormfront.org"). I highly suggest reading his other posts.
Here's Schmidt on Stormfront speaking of South African "class war" under the thread "Problems with our Movement" (https://www.stormfront.org/forum/t502133-72). Note the hatred for the "black-dominated multi-cultural...ANC and other terrorist entities" and the rich Afrikaner elites that "pioneered" the transition. (My boldfacing in all below):
Jose, Anarkismo should publish those articles Schmidt submitted to you, with an addendum that they are in no way endorsed by Anarkismo.
Here's Schmidt on Stormfront speaking of Anarchism, in the thread "Anarchism" (page 9, https://www.stormfront.org/forum/t558373-9/). Note other Stormfront members endorse "Anarchism" for its criticism of government (read from Page 1).
Saman delivers a ringing challenge to me: "Do you think that the 2008 Schmidt ZACF memo is vile and disgusting?"
I have already described it as racist. I regard racism as vile and disgusting.
"And do you support Schmidt's explanations of its content"
What explanation? I don't think he has ever really given one. Anyway, while it might be explained, it cannot be justified.
But does it prove that he was an undercover fascist and white nationalist?
Meanwhile the extended quotations from Stormfront (and Schmidt wrote much worse under his false persona) do not tell us anything new.
Yeah OK Wayne
Before we discuss Schmidt's Stormfront posts, let's back up. You're asking "What explanation [of the memo]? I don't think he has ever really given one. Anyway, while it might be explained, it cannot be justified"?
Schmidt's public defense of his memo is racist, and includes open lying. You said nothing about this part, did you in fact read it?
Before we address the memo, let me say this: I like your work, and don't lump you in with Schmidt and Lucien van der Walt. But if you don't actually know what Schmidt published in response to something as important as his ZACF memo, why should we take your opinion seriously? And why does it deserve to be published? This is a core part of the scandal. I don't intend hostility, but please keep an open mind to how some are probably be seeing your article and comments. Your question suggests you did an insufficient job researching and assessing this, and then submitted a statement of opinion, as if it really matters when you're not even aware of basic facts about the case. I'm sorry, but to step into this conversation like that and publish an article at Anarkismo is in my view inappropriate and a bit insulting to the people who are affected by this.
That said, Schmidt, under his own name, generated more than just some racist “comments” in his 2008 memo, as you note. It was a vile and racist 7-page treatise about the “cultural” inferiority of South African blacks in the liberation movement, portrayed as such in an attempt to push a racist agenda: to persuade the ZACF to see itself as the “vanguard” of a white-dominated anarchist movement that would include blacks as inferiors.
If you read it, you know that this memo came 5 years after he had “attempt[ed] during the drafting of the ZACF Constitution to have [a] divide” between capable whites and “less ideologically convinced blacks...explicitly recognised as (white) rearward collectives and (black) frontline collectives", with whites offering “liberal charity” to the “frontguard” blacks. It demonstrates not some 7-page-long momentary racist mishap written in 2008, but a long-standing racist perspective publicly unstated by Schmidt. Schmidt openly lies in broad daylight to all of us about this “attempt” to racially divide the ZACF in 2003 in his autobiographical defense. (He also openly lied about the Lebensrune/Algiz tattoo, of which we have a two pictures, as well.) This is who you're calling “democratic” and “anti-Eurocentric” and an "anarchist".
(In his autobiographical defense, Schmidt is likely correct about in Ross-Stephens' misinterpretation of “national” in “white 'national'”, and “purge” may be an overstatement, both of which are inconsequential to his racism).
If you read his defense, you'll see he rationalizes, unquestionably lies about, and flips the character of the memo from him pushing a racist agenda – the reality of the memo – to a memo in which he is acting as an anti-racist (minus the one “paragraph” he says is “bordering” on racism, and perhaps a few other "sentences"). That's what he says in his public response, which is also racism. And some people are apparently still defending him. It is disgusting.
Here are the links:
Schmidt ZACF Memo: http://www.pdf-archive.com/2015/10/12/schmidt-memo/
Schmidt Social Media response: http://antifascistnews.net/tag/michael-schmidt/
Schmidt Autobiographical blog defense: http://drinkingwithghosts.blogspot.se/ (9 paragraphs; start with the sentence "During the 2008 Pogroms” about 1/3 down)
Please explain to us his 2015 racist responses to his 2008 racist memo/agenda, and then why someone who gives a racist response to his own racist memo/agenda still gets called "anarchist". And if you do support his public responses about to the memo, please tell us which ones are defensible.
I speak here as individual, this is not a collective statement. I will not comment on the thread...
I would only make this remark. Anarkismo is a network of 20 organisations. among these 20 organisations, only 7 are english-speaking orgs. All material published in accusation or defense of schmidt has been in english, and that's a lot of text. you understand now the problem we actually face if we want, and we will, to maintain the democratic framework we have inside the network.
Subcomante Juan, I am pleased that you like my work, even if we disagree about this topic (can’t agree on everything). I don’t know what you have against Lucien van der Walt, whom no one has accused of anything, and who was at least the co-author of Black Flame, a great book.
(BTW, re-reading Reid-Ross and Stephen’s chapter one, on the ZACF statement, I see that they are quite clear in condemning Black Flame because they reject its syndicalist and platformist politics. I don’t think that the AK Press Collective has this political bias—since they published the book—but RR & S do.)
I read all this stuff, and was relying on my memory when I wrote that Schmidt’s defense of his memo was lacking in content. These things tend to smush together in memory. The 2008 internal ZACF statement was very bad. He was dealing with the problem, common among revolutionary groupings, that the membership of the “proletarian” organization was overwhelmingly white and middle class. Starting from this, at any specific time, the question is what to do to alter this situation?
His conclusion was ugly and racist: “The unnurtured ability of most black activists to engage in logical process, self-discipline, and autonomous strategic thinking has been strangled at birth….it has rendered most blacks incapable of other than the basest service to the Revolution….Thus, a libertarian socialist revolution is impossible in SA under current and foreseeable internal political-social conditions….” Taken literally this would rule out any “national anarchist” perspective either; clearly this is the result of burnout and depression.
This is bad enough. I do not believe that his further comments add to this. But the question remains, if Schmidt wrote something ugly and stupid and racist like this, does it prove that he is an infiltrating fascist and white nationalist? Should we ban Black Flame and its sequel?
Saman and I asked you some very specific questions about the memo and Schmidt's short response to it. I think these are fair questions. Are you willing to address them directly?
That said, I want to first comment: blacks and people of color - not whites - have led the anti-apartheid and post-apartheid liberation movement in South Africa, from Sharpeville and Soweto to the recent record-breaking workers' strikes and the 2015 student university shutdowns. In October, a black-led student movement shut down the nation's university system with democratic occupations and the protesters, attacked violently, successfully compelled the President to address them on television and cede their demand to cancel tuition fees for 2016 in what the news media regards the most important student protests in post-apartheid history. Other activism here includes organization with and for exploited campus workers and against out-sourcing. This is black- and POC-led, they are the overwhelming majority, and disproportionately so (relative to student populations). See the students for yourself: https://duckduckgo.com/?q=south+africa+student+protests...mages
The claim that Schmidt "was dealing with the problem, common among revolutionary groupings, that the membership of the 'proletarian' organization was overwhelmingly white and middle class" in South Africa, a country 90% people of color and 10% white, has zero basis in reality. It is absolutely untrue, and while I'm guessing you misspoke from a place of misunderstanding, it negates the struggle, contributions, integrity, and value of people of color in South Africa's history. (And I'm not even commenting on global history.)
First: regarding Schmidt's response to the memo. You say what Schmidt wrote was "vile and disgusting" in the ZACF memo, yet he responded that he was "asking difficult questions" that were "politically incorrect"; that he wrote "a deliberately provocative but sometimes badly formulated internal discussion document", and that he was actually advocating anti-racist inclusiveness. This suggests it is correct to deem a "vile and disgusting" writings as "politically incorrect".
The first question: We wouldn't accept that for "real" posts such as those on Stormfront, so why the difference with the just-as-vile-and-disgusting memo? Do you believe that it is not racist to characterize this memo as one "asking difficult questions" that are "politically incorrect" when those questions were about how to resolve what he says is the "dilemma" of either being seen as a tiny “white substitutionist vanguard” OR, alternatively, having a "large paper membership" that includes the inferior blacks (illogical, authoritarian, "less advanced", incapable, etc) who should not “merge” or “blend” with white anarchist groups (less they “debase” our ideas), but can at best perform the 'tasks' their white superiors 'establish for them'" ?? Please explain his explanation of the memo, post-leak, as anything less than racist.
Second: Schmidt responded that he was advocating racial inclusiveness in his ZACF memo. But in the memo, 1) He was advocating either the racist inclusion of black members (blacks as inferior foot soldiers) OR, he suggests, none at all except as "affiliates working alongside the Front". 2) He said that "shedding our black comrades" in December 2007 was beneficial to the ZACF, as it "led to a dramatic increase in coherence, activity and efficiency of the Front", which "indicates that in local conditions of anarchist organisation, middle-class white activists are peerless" (page 5). 3) He says he is in favor of a "distinct" white anarchist movement in SA, and that blacks cannot "merge" or "blend" with them.
Second question: Do you believe Schmidt was advocating racial inclusiveness in his memo, as he claims in his defense?
Third: Schmidt says: "I never argued for a 'racial divide' in the Federation in 2003,' as they claim, but simply that the leading 'frontline' collectives of the ZACF should be the BAG, SAG and ZAG, all of which were primarily black working class groups facing the fists and fines of the state on a daily basis".
In reality, after noting the failure of the mutli-racial WSF "most seriously" and the productiveness of its "all-white" "key replacement", the BMC, he tells us the ZACF was born. He then says:
Third question: Are we to believe he did not suggest a racial divide in 2003 because it may have been put in de facto terms, was yet obviously recognized as racial in the discussion, his peers rejecting it as a "race/class" division?
Fourth: Schmidt calls the following paragraph "bordering on racism":
Fourth question: Is it ethical to suggest this is merely "bordering" on racism?
Michael Schmidt says he "no longer endorses" the memo. Yet he denies its very racist character and agenda, and deems it to in fact be anti-racist, minus a single "paragraph" and (perhaps) a few "sentences". It is striking.
I ask these questions because this is the position of Michael Schmidt is taking today about his leaked memo. And it makes him not only racist in the memo, but racist and dishonest ("vile and disgusting") at this very moment as well. I would appreciate your answers to these questions.
Note: And this is not even considering the rest of the material.
PS -- As noted by Druzhina above, Lucien van der Walt has been convincingly outed for of sock puppet manipulation across the web, in this instance secretly defending Schmidt at Reddit and Libcom. You can read about the evidence here (http://pastebin.com/JQ3qf7Vm) and what is wrong with his sock puppet antics via Libcom (starting with post #788, https://libcom.org/forums/general/ak-press-says-michael...ge=26).
These are my final comments (assuming no new significant evidence or arguments). This is as far as I want to go with this; I have other things to do. Those who do not agree with me (many of whom I respect), will still not agree with me. Perhaps over time they or I will alter our opinions. To be clear: I am not a spokesperson for Anarkismo or any other organization. Just me.
I still do not see why Lucien vd Walt should be denounced. I don't agree with using "sock puppetry" (and do not use it) but it seems a minor error considering what we are discussing.
My conclusions are (1) there is much that Michael Schmidt wrote (even leaving aside the actual fascist postings under other names) which ranges from un-understandable and murky to false to outright racist. (I do not think that his "defense" of his 2008 ZACF document changes that). This is alongside of, and apparently in contradiction to, the positive things he has done--which do not justify the racist statements. I find this disappointing.
(2) I do not find that this is enough to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that he is an infiltrating fascist and white nationalist. I realize that other people think differently, but that is how I see it.
(3) In any case I think that Black Flame should continue to be published. While not perfect it is an excellent book on revolutionary anarchism. And so should its sequel volume, which I hope is also a good book. Like Anarcho, I note that AK Press publishes work by Proudhon (a misogynist and anti-Semite) and by Kropotkin (an enthusiastic supporter of Allied imperialism in World War I). And Schmidt is only the co-author of the these two books.
Two other things (see also next post about Schmidt on Muslims):
Schmidt lied about a very specific Nazi-associated white supremacist tattoo. He has a "Lebensrune" tattoo on his left shoulder, pictured clearly in Chapter 2 by Ross-Stephens (https://medium.com/@rossstephens/about-schmidt-how-a-white-nationalist-seduced-anarchists-around-the-world-chapter-2-1849e232b943#.5hi7a4brb). The Lebensrune is a symbol on at least two white supremacist flags (including the popular National Alliance), is listed in Wikipedia under "Nazi symbols" (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nazi_symbolism) and is widely displayed and discussed by members on Stormfront. On Stormfront, Schmidt brags he can display the Lebensrune symbol in public because it is not well-known by "dumbass darkies" and as we all know, the rest of society.
In Schmidt's defense, he says he has "NO RACIST TATTOOS" and he produces a list in which he omits the Lebensrune. Even worse, he says on his "left shoulder" that he has an inverted "printer's press" tattoo, which he then tells us "is not a runic" tattoo, as if the printer's press were the tattoo in question. Yet the Lebensrune is right next to the "printer's" press tattoo, pictured clearly online, and that is a widely used racist "runic" tattoo by white nationalists. (I also recommend Loukanikos's explanation of his Scythian tattoos at Libcom, post #766.)
How do you explain Schmidt lying to us about his Lebensrune tattoo?
Schmidt incited white supremacists to express white supremacist symbols at the World Cup. On Stormfront he encouraged "white nationalists" to "flood the World Cup" in 2010, bond with other white nationalists, and wear and display shirts and flags with white supremacist symbols on them. He recommends Lebensrune and Boer flags. (https://medium.com/@areidross/i-fact-checked-michael-schmidt-s-autobiography-and-it-s-worse-than-we-thought-9df765516095#.bxoloc5fp)
So Schmidt is telling a bunch of white supremacists to sit in a giant, racially diverse, South African and international crowd, and raise white supremacist flags. If this were done, people could've gotten hurt. Violence or race riots could've broken out.
Is this what "anti-racist" "infiltrators" do as "undercover" investigators? Inciting public hatred and violence is OK?
I don't know what else can be said to anyone defending this stuff.
I think the anarchist community should thank Ross, Stephens, who deserve our support for their work, and follow the lead of AK Press in banning Michael Schmidt from participation in their organizations.
At Libcom a poster said one of the Schmidt articles rejected by Anarkismo is about Muslims and is called "The European Menace". (I think these articles should be released.) (As Wayne Price notes, Schmidt exhibits "disturbing trends" in his comments denying the oppression of Muslims internationally and in Europe in his published articles.)
Schmidt (Karelianblue) on Stormfront posting about Muslims:
Karelianblue [09-11-2006]: (https://www.stormfront.org/forum/t323554/)
Karelianblue [12-01-2007]: (https://www.stormfront.org/forum/t440396-14/)
Karelianblue [04-20-2009]: (https://www.stormfront.org/forum/t415782-4/)
Surprisingly vacant and facile commentary on such an important person and topic. If this is as good an attempt at rehabilitation as his defenders can muster then Schmidt's legacy within anarchism has taken a fatal blow.
Anarkismo should release the two Schmidt articles it rejected in 2015, one of which was the Islamophobic "Menace in Europe".
Anyone who has drafts of ZACF and Anarkismo statements on Schmidt should release them. The ZACF response is currently circulating to hundreds via e-mail, but has yet to surface on the web.
While we wait for those, chew on this. Much of it has not been published.
Fascist Schmidt posts:
More Fascist Schmidt posts:
PDF version: http://www.pdf-archive.com/2016/01/27/michael-schmidt-s...reed/
MarkDown Source: http://pastebin.com/zFsEdJdE
"Strandwolf's Creed" by Michael Schmidt
The Black Battlefront Manifesto
These are ideological blog posts by prominent anarcho-fascist writer Michael Schmidt from 2010 and 2011. These posts were once published at [strandwolf.blogspot.com](http://strandwolf.blogspot.com) but were taken down by Schmidt in 2015 once his identity as the writer was revealed. Before being outed as a white supremacist, Schmidt was best known for co-authoring the controversial anarchist history [Black Flame](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_Flame:_The_Revoluti..._1%29) with longtime friend and collaborator [Lucien van der Walt](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lucien_van_der_walt).
"Strandwolf's Creed" is deeply personal, revealing the author's political vision as the product of his proud Afrikaner heritage. Schmidt's outline for Boer progress is steeped in history, providing a racist, elitist, and deterministic view of not only human evolution, but human progress well into the 21st Century. Through his writings as "Strandwolf" (or, early on, "Ardent Vinlander"), Schmidt is building the plan for his movement, a red-brown admixture of anarchism and white power.
Black Battlefront, the militant group fueled by this manifesto, would be the culmination of decades of activism for Schmidt, allowing him to recruit activists into a whites-only organization with aggressive racism at its core (curiously an "anti-racist" concept to the author). Schmidt's calls for racial segregation closely mirror his recommendations for the Zabalaza Anarchist Communist Front (ZACF), revealed in a [leaked internal memo](http://www.pdf-archive.com/2015/10/12/schmidt-memo/schm...o.pdf).
These writings coincide with posts by Schmidt as "Karelianblue" (in the white supremacist Stormfront forums) and "Françoise Le Sueur" (on Facebook), where Schmidt was actively recruiting for Black Battlefront. For background, see Schmidt's posts [here](http://filepi.com/i/S5r9NDz) or [here](http://www.pdf-archive.com/2016/01/26/michael-schmidt-k...t-00/).
"Strandwolf's Creed" has been reassembled for clarity and legibility, but the original text has not been altered (even misspellings and typos have been kept). There are bound to be other minor formatting errors from the OCR/transcribing process; feel free to download the text as [MarkDown](http://pastebin.com) or [PDF](http://www.pdf-archive.com/2016/01/27/michael-schmidt-s...reed/) and fix these bugs.
See screenshots of the original posts, complete with white nationalist imagery, [here](http://filepi.com/i/P2OoSTj) or [here](http://www.pdf-archive.com/2016/01/26/michael-schmidt-a...ront/).
### White African National-Anarchist
The Strandwolf ("beach wolf") is the brown hyaena found on the lonely Atlantic beaches of the Namib desert: with more powerful jaws and greater stamina than a lion, the hyaena hunt in matriarchal packs and, inverting their clitori, are impossible to rape. They are viewed by the indigenous people as spirit-animals. Strandwolf is the blog of Black Battlefront, an anti-racist revolutionary cadre network of White African politico-social soldiers in Southern Africa who aim at defending our unique culture, under the anarchist black flag! We take our inspiration from militants and cultural warriors of the calibre of Nestor Makhno, Kai Murros, Jim Goad and Troy Southgate. Strandwolf is a ghost in the machine of the African night, a spectral flicker on the shores of the Skeleton Coast, a low-slung hunter on the night-time highway that stretches forever away from the roiling smokes of Johannesburg into the bleach-and-acetate reaches of the platteland where gaunt windpompe scratch stars in the sky.
MY CREED PART I: CONQUEST – by Ardent Vinlander
### Wednesday, February 17, 2010, 4:48am
1. The white (wo)man is in Africa by conquest. This is inescapable; that gunpowder beats spear, wolves rule over sheep. And yet we are human and not animals, thus we mark our territory not with urine but blood.
2. This right of conquest may not be ethically "right" but it is the forge of history – and the alloy that results, its temper and strength are then set. How we deal with that is both rooted in, and starts, now.
3. The implication is that primitivism, Africanism or any qualified or absolute return to a pre-colonial "state of grace" is impossible. Also clear is that redress and reparations for past wrongs, grievous though they may be, are impossible. Thus may the Herero seek apology from the Germans for genocide, but not redress.
4. And so, only those directly guilty of actual crimes can be held responsible; future generations cannot be made to pay for the "sins of their fathers".
5. The Xhosa nation was a formidable foe – the Battle of Amatola being the supreme example – and it took nine wars to suppress them. The Zulu nation was a formidable foe – the Battle of Isandlwana being the supreme example – but shortly they too were reduced, as others before them. There is no shame in going down fighting to superior forces.
6. Our enemies are not those who fight us in the open, hoping to mark their territory with our blood, but those who rot us from within, corrupting the will.
7. The inescapable lot of the defeated is humility and servitude, but there is no shame in lowly status, for all parts need to function for the good of the whole.
8. Gunpowder and the lash are not in themselves progress, but they disciplined fractious hordes to a common purpose, for the good of the whole.
9. That purpose was civilisation, as the white (wo)man brought electric light, roads, canals, plantations, mines, engines, aircraft, automobiles, schooling, faith – both inspiration and aspiration, without which all peoples go to seed.
MY CREED PART II: CULTURE – by Ardent Vinlander
### Wednesday, February 17, 2010, 4:51am
1. Cultural identity is not fixed – and often involves "sub-cultural" norms defined by peer group education and experience, locality, dialect and so forth.
2. So there are no cultural absolutes, no "pure" culture. The example of the West African origins of rock 'n roll is evidence of this.
3. And yet cultural identity proves exceptionally strong – determinant of identity, adherence, cleavage, and ultimately of a people's fate.
4. In the age of the Internet and mobile communications, one's "community" is often no longer localised or even restricted to much more than a dialect group or interest group. Thus while some communities are entirely "virtual", others are very much bound by real-time/space.
5. In this period of flux, then, cultural currents and sub-cultural undertows pull in various directions – towards fragmentation and specialisation, the niche, and towards consolidation and universalism, the global.
6. Both are "artificial" to the extent that they are intentionally striven for, yet both are "natural" to the extent that they are instinctually driven.
7. This may manifest both – and often simultaneously – in autarch-individualism and in mob-mentality herd instinct.
8. Culture then cannot be assessed as "reactionary" merely because it seeks to conserve, artificially or naturally, a set of values, beliefs, practices and artefacts. In the same light, a culture cannot be assessed as "progressive" merely because it seeks to change, artificially or naturally, a set of values, beliefs, practices and artefacts.
9. Progress and reaction only have meaning in relation to human rights and ethics, in other words, in relation to the standard of the Golden Rule. But the Golden Rule is rusted by weakness: it allows no place for defensive actions aimed at supporting a culture's right to life, limb and liberty. In other words, ethics need to come armed.
MY CREED PART III: AGGRESSION – by Ardent Vinlander
### Wednesday, February 17, 2010, 6:00am
1. Aggression is a natural and artificial human capability. In other words, it is both an instinctive fighting mechanism, defending life, limb and liberty – and a conscious defence of higher values, Including territory, beliefs, practices and artefacts.
2. Aggression is not always expressed as violence although it always contains within it the threat of violence – as it is also expressed as territory, authority, ability and consciousness, all of which are a combination of both artificial and natural prerogatives.
3. Natural prerogatives are essentially grounded in biological warfare, the defence of the species and of its ability to survive and propagate, its instinctive motor ability to grasp and shape the physical realm; they are the flint-tipped spears by which our ancient ancestors routed bears from the caves which became our shelters.
4. Artificial prerogatives are essentially grounded in psychological (some would call it spiritual) warfare, the defence of the species' ability to interpret and predict, its learned diagnostic ability to intuit and give shape to our dreams; they are the ochred cave paintings of Lascaux and other Palaeolithic sites
5. The origins of these ingrained prerogatives are shrouded in the emergence of consciousness within the fog of pre-history – those unrecorded centuries of our coming into being.
6. And yet we know that the development of speech, the root of both natural and especially of artificial prerogatives, was driven by the need to communicate defence against the sabre-toothed which stalked our early kind.
7. Forged in the fires of social defence against our racial enemies, speech gave flight to consciousness. Thus was aggression the foundation on which we were able to later erect the flying buttresses of philosophical thought.
8. So equipped with social organisation, communication, the tools of biological and psychological warfare, and higher consciousness, we ascended from the status of animals undifferentiated from the natural landscape to the Colossus which stands astride the world.
9. And yet we retain our binary nature: our feet planted in the soil of our origins, our eyes searching deep into the far reaches of interstellar space, knowing we are not the measure of all things – and yet measuring all things, knowing we conquer by understanding.
10. Thus social aggression is the foundation of our racial consciousness and our racial consciousness is the tool by which we conquer.
MY CREED PART IV: RACE
### Sunday, September 26, 2010, 2:08am
1. Homo Sapiens Sapiens is the sole survivor of discrete, parallel yet seldom contemporaneous and only sometimes competing human strains of development. It is in reference to this sole survivor that we incorrectly speak of the "human race" which outiasted other proto-human races including the Neanderthals, Homo Erectus and Homo Robustus.
2. And yet the Sapiens Sapiens species is diverse, with its greatest smorgasbord of genes pooled in the great mother-continent of Africa – which by the law of averages should thus have produced its highest levels of cultural diversity, consciousness and civilisation. And yet the brute tribalism that dominates from the Sahara to the Savannah is almost undifferentiated in its suffocating, stultified primitiveness, locked in to ancestor-worship voodoo and unquestioning authoritarianism. Even the physical features of the people have only slightly evolved, producing a narrow range almost entirely represented by the Nilotics and the Bantu.
3. Only the slender archaic haplogroup F strand of this great gene-pool proved adventurous, trekking further afield to leave Africa and establish a unique root-race in what is today the Middle East. It is from this root-race that the greatest physical-cultural diversity of the world emerged, from the blackest Papuan headhunters, to the reddest Pictish warriors.
4. These incredibly diverse haplogroup populations were differentiated by hundreds of thousands of years of genetic adaptation, mutation, in a word, evolution. The result was the great racial gene-pools of what would today be recognised as Asiatics, Native Americans, Australasians, South Asians – and our own race, the Europeans, in particular represented by the haplogroups R1a, R1b, and I1.
5. Each race is uniquely adapted to their environmental conditions, in other words, they have a genetic connection to the landscapes within which they developed. This is expressed in terms of the race's physique: stocky build, black skin, brown eyes and broad noses for the Aborigines of arid Australasia; tall build, white skin, pale eyes and narrow noses for the Nordics of icy Scandinavia. And it is also expressed in terms of culture: the Aboriginal cave paintings of Ayers Rock have the same function as the Cro Magnon cave paintings of Lascaux, the interpretation of the natural-physical world in spiritual-psycological terms; these expressions tie the race to the landscape, a landscape which very directly gave rise to their racial form; thus each modern race has a natural ancestral homeland.
6. Neccesity is indeed the mother of invention. The extreme environments into which proto-Europeans wandered demanded the utmost of their ingenuity, skill, cunning and inventiveness. We presume there were proto-Europeans who also tried to sit on their bums drinking maize-beer watching the women work, but that they were wiped out in their first winter. And yet we still find "21st Century Hunter-gatherers" – derived from the same root-race as the Europeans – who have clearly not been pressed by circumstance to evolve over the past 10,000 years; no hoes, no millet, no necessity, no invention.
7. Some of the tension in forming civilisations arises between sedentaries (those who build settlements, based on agricultural surplus), and nomads (who at the most, drive cattle). But there is a clear distinction between the wandering Vikings who built ships and roamed far and wide for plunder and women – establishing settlements with permanent structures and a written culture along the way in many cases, and the African herdsmen who simply chase the seasons from waterhole to waterhole. In other words, the Viking was never a true nomad.
8. Africans did build tribal-militarist kingdoms with some elements of civilisation and some attempt at building large-scale settlements: Ashante, Ulundi, Great Zimbabwe etc. But although the Portuguese, on first arriving in West Africa in the 1500s, treated the local king as equal because they had a standing army, a form of "university" and a bureaucracy, the West Africans had fallen from that quasi-Medieval state into savagely warring factions by the time European civilisation penetrated the interior – and never recovered.
9. So "Medieval" is the closest that blacks have come to civilisation, while some still today languish 10,000 years behind the Europeans who gave Africa its science, industry, infrastructure, education, medicine and large-scale agriculture, most of it fallen into terrible disrepair under black rule since the late 1950s. In order to, if not forestall this decay, at least build the bulwarks of a white redoubt strong enough to stand against this darkling tide, we require organisation.
MY CREED PART V
_Editor's Note: There is no post with this title in known screenshots of strandwolf.blogspot.com. Keeping this placeholder in case the text surfaces._
MY CREED PART VI: NATIONAL-ANARCHISM
### Tuesday, November 16, 2010, 9:54am
1. The form of organisation worst suited to the creation of intelligently-run, ergonomic, environmentally sustainable, progressive, innovative white communities is statist capitalism, capitalism because it is an alien Judeo-Christian system which lives parasitically off the social wealth created by all races, the white foremost among them, and statism because it is the armoured claw of the parasites, the enforcer of the inequality which keeps the majority of our people poor.
2. Previous forms of organisation aimed at creating a whole society have failed dismally, especially grand apartheid and its British, Dutch, and Afrikaner predecessors. The apartheid state was a corruption of white rule not only because of the abominable, inhuman way in which it treated its black neighbours – but because it lived parasitically off the white working class which it employed as its ultimately disposable enforcers of minority elite privilege. Likewise, white separatism such as the Orania project which are merely this system in miniature, are anathema to us, as is self-defeating white terrorism such as the Wit Wolve, devoid as it is of ethics or strategic thinking.
3. The form of organisation best suited to the creation of a white society of recognisably human and humane form is revolutionary anarchism, a progressive socio-political form which eschews the reactionary reinforcement of white supremacist state/capitalist oppression and exploitation, and which also avoids the pitfalls of either precipitate, terroristic adventurism or the seductions of a retreat into an unattainable mystical past – a form that boldly attacks privilege and parasitism on all fronts, the sweeping, multidimensional battlespace.
4. And the form of revolutionary anarchism that best suits the construction of an alternate, autogestive white society is one that draws on an eclectic set of principles derived from various leading-edge traditions. From Jim Goad we take the sensibility of a combative working class mentality that is plainspoken and honest. From Nestor Makhno we take the military-tactical lessons of locating ourselves within the heartlands of our communities, and of being internally of one mind yet externally pluralistic in our alliances. From Troy Southgate we take the metapolitical lessons of our spiritual-psychological ties to the landscape of Africa, land we won by right of conquest.
5. These ideological wellsprings enable us to ground our battle in an actual physical and mental space. An in order to be truly grounded, we need to be scrupulously egalitarian and what this means in the southern African battlespace is that we are compelled to judicially recognise the right of white anarchists and black anarchists to establish their own separate, culturally-distinct formal organisations and informal networks. For while African revolutionary anarchists, by the rationale of even the Bolshevik-tainted international anarchist movement, it is entirely legitimate to establish separate white anarchist organisations, based on the following three points:
6. Our status as a demographic / cultural minority (in the US that means blacks, Asians, Hispanics and Native Americans, but here it means whites, Asians, Coloureds and Indigenous). This might refer to a group being a minority in a specific geographic locality but also relates to white cultural hegemony which obviously no longer obtains in terms of primary cultural indicators such as the content of national public broadcasters. Secondary cultural indicators, such as the wearing of Western dress by most blacks, is not, however, evidence of the survival of white hegemony.
7. Our status as a vulnerable group. Here the driving factors range from the declining white population (about 500,000 white South Africans have emigrated since 1994, while fertility rates also decline), to the economic status, the class, of the white population group. According to a 2009 Unisa study, 1.5-million out of 4 million whites are poor, often unemployed, working class, another 1.8-million are in the better paid skilled section of the working class. Only 423,000 are middle class and only 310,000 are wealthy. This points to the necessity, with 3,3-million whites in the working class or unemployed underclass, of organising primarily among those classes.
8. Our status as a group suffering judicial or extrajudicial discrimination. Here the factors include the wave of largely unrecognised race-hate crimes against the farming community, especially in Zimbabwe and South Africa, and of course race-discriminatory legislation aimed at curbing the socio-economic mobility of whites, again marked in those two countries in particular.
9. So, in order to organise as a legitimate social-revolutionary force, grounded in southern African realities, and to fight in an ethically-armed, community-grounded manner against the extinction of the remnants of our hard-won geographic and cultural conquests in Africa, we form a revolutionary "black" (ie: anarchist) organisation, to engage on the multidimensional battlefront: Black Battlefront.
MY CREED PART VII: HEARTLAND
### Sunday, April 17, 2011, 6:20am
1. In order for the Aryan African working class to adequately defend itself against its enemies, it is first necessary to define our territory and to be explicit about who those enemies are. Though the demographic demon of black genetic propagation is our acknowledged primary threat and challenge to our foothold on the continent, black people per se are not our enemies. In fact, in order to adequately argue in the court of international opinion our right to self-determination requires that we fundamentally acknowledge the black's equal right to those parts of Africa that they in turn won by right of conquest, however defined.
2. This in turn requires a Swiss-like cantonal policy of armed neutrality, of watchful good-neighbourliness, which will allow black and Aryan Africans to live peaceably according to their own separate traditions, in their agreed territories, and where necessary, naturally to conduct cordial, if not fraternal, bilateral diplomatic and commercial relations in an anti-imperialist fashion.
3. So then, who are our enemies? They include the propagators of abstraction: Jesus, Mohammed, Freud and other progenitors of the idea of an invisible, voodoo power that knows better than we, the living biological distillation of millions of years of real, hardcore survivalist evolution. This includes post-modernists like Deboard, zero-sum fanatics like Pol Pot and other obfuscators of real life as lived by real people. These enemies obscure clear thought among Aryan people.
4. The propagators of guilt: Mandela, Fanon, King, Guevara and other debasers of Aryan culture – plus their liberal media and marketing hacks, who push this crippling dogma via their footholds in insecure Western institutions of debased learning and culture. This includes feminists, Maoists and others who deny the right of conquest – and its uplifting, civilising mission. These enemies sap our will by denying our unassailable centuries of cultural, military, scientific and economic achievement.
5. The propagators of parasitism: Stalin, Rothschild, Oppenheimer, Rupert, Sexwale and other drum-majorettes of the capitalist dysfunction whereby the hard-working, honest majority in the Occident (most often Aryan) is regularly dispossessed by non-productive Oriental elements (sometimes Semitic – both Arab and Jew). This includes investment bankers and all supra-national expressions of parasitic, non-productive greed, usury and outright robbery of the public purse.
6. And in dispossessing our enemies, what then should our territory be? Our territories can historical be defined in numerous ways, and many resconstructionist projects look towards the old Boer Republics of the Transvall and Orange Free State – but these agrarian cultures have long been lost to British imperialism and their local comprador lackeys, swallowed up by liberal, multicultural industrialisation. Not that we reject industrialisation, but rather its deleterious effects: the compound system of impressed immigrant labour, the deliberate creation of a black underclass to undercut already slender white working class gains.
7. We can rather lay claim to the western portions of the Old Cape and its hinterland, settled from 1652: from Cape Town as far east as Graaf-Reinet, sweeping northwards to embrace the Karoo and Kalahari and further, across the Orange River into Old German South-West Africa, as far north as the Karas region's northern boundary and as far west as Lüderitz. Surrendering the gold- and coal-mining, industrial and financial heartland plus the eastern ports, farms and plantations to majority-black South Africa would nevertheless leave us with a coherent territory, predominantly Afrikaans-speaking, with a white and coloured majority, of hardy seafaring and farming folk, whose economic strength rests on the civil port of Cape Town, on wine and fruit growing, on diamond-mining, tourism, clothing mills, fishing, game and sheep farming, with its own university, hospitals and tertiary institutions, navy, air force, press, broadcasters and unique cultural traditions stretching back three and a half centuries.
8. But it is insufficient to simply lop off this historical Aryan African heartland: its civil, judicial, legislative and military powers must be decentralised to District level, all Districts to be federated horizontally and to be administered by regularly rotated, immediately-recallable delegates narrowly delegated by quarterly plenary District Conventions whereby residents hold all executive decision-making powers. And all Districts shall gather their delegates annually or as often as required to form a Convention of Districts which shall be narrowly mandated to decide on matters of national importance.
9. On the national question, while all black and Asian residents of the territory shall automatically be deemed without prejudice to be foreigners, most of the blacks presumed to be South African citizens, all Aryan, Coloured and Bushman residents of proven Old Cape / Karras heritage shall automatically be citizens, with preferred residency and citizenship offered to Aryans of any origin, provided that the four historic towns of Stellenbosch (1679), Franschhoek (1687), Swellendam (1743) and Graaf-Reinet (1786) be reserved exclusively for Aryans, and that each District Convention have the right to decide on racial zones of use and exclusion.
### More strandwolf.blogspot.com posts by Michael Schmidt
1. Ode to a Dying Race (Saturday, February 13, 2010, 2:25am)
2. Strandwolf is back in action! (Sunday, September 16, 2007, 3:36am)
* "mas vale morir de pie que vivir de rodillas! it is better to die on your feet than to live on your knees!" – praxedis guerrero, mexico, (1882-1910) killed while lighting the fuse on the mexican revolution, aged 28
3. Platform of the Anarchist Communists of Bulgaria, 1945
* check this out – this is the real deal! _Editor's note: The text that follows originates from [anarchistplatform.wordpress.com](https://anarchistplatform.wordpress.com/2010/04/21/plat...1945/)_
These writings by Schmidt from fascist sites are pretty disgusting and upsetting--especially its crackpot advocacy of a fascist anarchism.
But I object to William Everard's reference to "the controversial anarchist history [Black Flame]." In this context it may sound to some like Black Flame (mostly written by van der Walt) somehow supported racism. In fact, as I argued in my article, it directly contradicted the basic concepts of fascism and white supremacy and the oppression of nations, supporting internationalism, national liberation, and working class democracy. Sure, BF was "controversial", but only in the sense that not everyone agreed with all of it (I found weaknesses in it myself).
Of course, that is not the main question here, but it would be mistaken, as a side issue, to sort-of denounce an excellent book.
Perhaps the language is unfortunate concerning Black Flame, maybe it isn't, maybe Van Der Walt bears some responsibility esp. now after his defense of MS via RedBlack psuedonym... we don't know what he knew and when, how much of MS ideology is in BF. plus, you reap what you sow and you're defined by your company. brushing this under the rug is inexcusable as Van Der Walt and co. are trying to do... we know from RedBlack posts and from early drafts of the ZACF response to this affair that are circulating.
forgetting all of that, have you changed your mind on Schmidt's fascism, Wayne? These writings coupled with the leaked ZACF memo make his ideology clear and even remarkably consistent tho still crackpot as you say.
Surely you don't think this was undercover work or a lapse of judgment by MS. The Creed is clear in its intention and the stormfront posts corroborate his worldview and active recruiting into militant 'anarchofascist' group
First, you comment that these writings are disgusting and upsetting and "crackpot" -- are you willing to post a retraction?
Second, what do you make of Schmidt's post on Stormfront suggesting that
So Schmidt was telling a forum full of oft-violent white supremacists to "flood" a giant crowd of South African and internationals at the World Cup and fly fascist neo-Nazi white supremacist flags and wear these symbols on t-shirts.
He posted this in a Stormfront thread started by David Duke where Stormfront members are discussing the possibility of murder and race riots breaking out at the World Cup.
What do you make of Schmidt's incitement to fascist and white supremacist violence and hatred at the World Cup on Stormfront Wayne?
That Schmidt's comments on fascist sites, written under other names, were racist, fascist, and therefore disgusting and vile is not news. I had already said this in my article quite explicitly. The questions are (1) Is this fascist the "real" Schmidt or a phony? (2) Or are both Schmidts (fascist and anti-fascist) "real"? In which case he is pathologically confused. (3) and has he been deliberately "infiltrating" the anarchist movement as a deliberate strategy?
Right now I am waiting to see the final statement by ZACF and by Lucien van der Walt. Then I may comment further.
Since you number your response lets talk about it in order:
(1) the way you word it makes it seem like you assume MS is a 'phony' and then continue from that assumption (when you say things like 'written under other names'). Surely a Creed as extensive as the text above isn't some fake version of his ideology, esp. when coupled with the rest of the evidence including the leaked ZACF memo signed by Schmidt. Instead, the Creed is a very sincere attempt to combine anarchism with a kooky White Power ideology, eugenics (complete with talk of gene royalty and haplotypes), and imperialism (complete with talk of a special territory for whites in South Africa). Would you afford anyone else this luxury of perhaps not being their 'real' opinions if you weren't defending the author's integrity? Schmidt doesn't deserve special treatment just because he's written other texts that are not outwardly racist in the past. Strandwolfs Creed is clearly a deliberate manifesto written by Schmidt who has also declared himself a 'national anarchist' (aka fascist) in other writings.
Even if it were somehow 'phony', it's inexcusable for Schmidt to write such things and recruit people into a militant fascist group. Schmidt has multiple posts from both StormFront and Facebook where he is pointing to the Strandwolf writings and asking to join up with Troy Southgate and other white power fascists. Why would we assume its phony unless we're apologizing for him? What else could be the purpose of these writings but the recruitment into Black Battlefront that the text talks about? Keep in mind, Schmidt thought no one would find out, pulled the posts when he was caught, and made excuses that make absolutely no sense (nonsense in its purest form). Or have you not read his admittance of creating Black Battlefront and the Creed and his lame excuse centered on an illness and supposed spy story? And, Schmidt's response to all this doesn't even fit the timeline of these posts and blames an editor that has strongly denied Schmidts fantasy version of events?
(2) You're positing a situation that is technically impossible to prove and misleading. If a prominent anarchist-by-day is also a white power nationalist by night, is he an infiltrator? The question is far *besides the point*. Schmidt is clearly deliberate in the Creed, esp. when coupled with other posts on those sites (have you seen the posts where he points to the Strandwolf blog and asks people to join him??) It's fair to call that infiltration if the writer was already a prominent anarchist and is using that status to recruit into a militant, violent, anti-semitic, sexist, hate group. On top of that, others have asked you ovr and over again to approach the incitements to violence that Schmidt calls for multiple times, most notably at the World Cup. If you were to look you'd see many white power fascists joined him in a deliberate campaign against blacks during that sports event, and things could have been much worse if a riot or two broke out. Is that not 'deliberate' enough for you? How about when he asks white anarchists to join him in his militant group? Is that not 'recruitment'?
And, of course, if you did actually read the text above (I'm not convinced you did), you'd see the anti-semitism, Euro-centrism, Nordic-fetishism, and other hallmarks of fascist ideology. Did Schmidt accidently copy and paste a work from his 'Fascist Creative Writing 101' class online? Maybe a drunk or phony or sick Schmidt did or some other excuse that stretches credulity?
As an aside, if youre so close to Schmidt, ZACF, Lucien VanDer Walt, and co. why don't you ask them for a response directly? Maybe youd reach the 'real Schmidt' and can enjoy his illogical acrobatics around this issue (complete with a legal threat for his critics, as Schmidt posted the last time he came out with a public response).
1. strong apology for the RBW pseudonym posts he was called out on
2. context for his actions and emotional turmoil
3. denouncement of scmidt strongly for the 'Creed' circulated widely, the ZACF memo, SF posts (and other activity of Michael?)
4. criticism of ARR and JS approach
5. criticism of Michaels responses as unconvincing but points to his anarchist writings as counterpoint
6. statement that lucien is still unsure, waiting on commission.
All everyone wanted was such a response and here it is. although I will say, Lucien still has a monolithic view of neo-nazis, cryptofascists, et al - just about the only thing clear from stormfront is that a loose idea of white supremacy binds them together. Even on that point, there is discussion about which whites are 'better' and what races are 'honorary whites' [maybe not all asians but just japanese, etc]. Michaels huge body of anarchist work is not hard to rectify with fascist ideology when you actually get rid of a preconceived, monolithic view of the awful ideas - there is diversity of thought even in the absolute gutter and vomit of the human mind.
Commission is not necessary in my opinion and others; just release the articles/evidence thats not yet out there and let others decide [menace in europe and neither fish-nor-fowl articles etc], denounce the racism and fascism and the obvious things [ as lucien did, even the tatoo etc], come up with a broad conclusion that [should be] uncontroversial for anarchists of all stripes,, and translate and circulate it as a draft for eventual publication [with a time window for comments]. I will quote this comment by Dannny on libcom here which explains what such a broad uncontroversial conclusion could be:
"Thanks for these comments, Lucien. I appreciate this must have been a shitty time for you.
On this point:
If Schmidt is a fascist then it seems to me that the anarchist activity, tattoos and writings can be explained by two possible factors: 1) he meant them sincerely at the time but changed his position. 2) the 'national anarchism' he advocates is an attempt to make racism and various other tenets of fascism compatible with anarchism, in which case knowledge of and credibility within anarchism are a plus for him, even if to achieve this he has to behave in contradictory ways and write things contrary to what he believes.
For someone who knows him, those explanations might not convince, but that's how it looks from the outside. And from here it looks like Schmidt is a fascist because what kind of undercover anti-fascist activity could feasibly, in a million years, involve advocating a 'black battlefront' that expicitly attempts to wed 'anarchism' to violent racism? So one of those above explanations must broadly suffice, regardless of the content of that activity and those texts. In that sense, the weaknesses of the investigation seem largely irrelevant at this point.
In any case, I hope that all those who were close to Schmidt get through this experience as best they can, without making any concessions to or excuses for racism and nationalism, and I'm glad and gratified to see that approach in your comments."
In terms of this posed by "anarcho":
I do not recall writing this -- I've used "Anarcho" for many years on numerous websites but that does not stop others using it. As I indicated, I don't recall writing this. I don't visit Anarkismo that often these days but I think I would remember writing the above -- I don't usually use terms like "hard pill to swallow".
In terms of "Black Flame", it is a good book and an excellent introduction to anarchism. It is not racist, fascist or "national anarchist". Which is way the allegation against Schmidt came as such a surprise. I would like to see the second volume published -- and the first volume get sold. I can, though, understand AK press not wanting to give royalties to someone who may be a fascist infiltrator -- in this sense, it is different to Proudhon, Bakunin or Kropotkin.
The question is, can volume 1 and 2 be rewritten to remove Schmidt's contributions? Assuming he is definitely proven to be a fascist infiltrator -- suffice to say, some of the activities he has admitted to (such as his posts as an "uncover" journalist) are hard to square with what I would consider acceptable behaviour and so he does have a case to answer. His last reply was not sufficient and its rambling nature did not help.
And I must note that I am concerned -- to say the least -- that this is being used to attack class struggle anarchism in general and specific people (like Lucien). The reason why Schmidt was accepted was because "Black Flame" was a good book on anarchism and was in no way racist, fascist, etc. -- I have seen no critic suggest that it was, not even the most critical of it.
Just to say, some years later, that my opinion of Michael Schmidt and the charges against him was wrong. I now think that he did write and say racist and fascist statements. These were bizzarely mixed in with his work supporting revolutionary class struggle anarchism. I doubt that he was a deliberate infiltrator as such so much as a confused and disturbed person, but I do not really understand his motives or what he thought he was doing.
I still think that Black Flame was a good book, without the negative aspects of Schmidt's thinking. This is probably due to Lucien Van Der Walt being the main writer, and with Schmidt hiding his worst ideas. I think that it should still be sold, and that Lucien should be given an opportunity to write the second volume.