Through the latter half of of September there was a wave of protests in Lebanon starting from Beirut’s Martyr’s Square and heading to the Parliament building at Nejmeh Square with the intent to break through the security barriers and kick the corrupt government out.
These protests follow a vast economic crisis proceeded over by a minority governments lining it’s own pockets. Lebanon has been governed by a sect-based political system that has stood unchanged since the end of the Lebanese civil war in 1991 and despite the waves of action during the Arab Spring in 2011, the government remains in control with an iron grip and a black heart.
Whether Christians, Sunnis, Shiites, Alawites or Druze, the working class Lebanese all face a new wave of taxes and a faltering economy. The daily reality of no food in the cupboards and no water in the taps left them with only one choice. They took to the streets to protest for a decent existence, only to find themselves dealing with horrific police brutality.
In the middle of this there is a relatively new group taking to the streets, organising and sharing the politics of Anarchism, they are named Kefah! or Struggle. They formed in December last year as “big tent” collective of Anarchist comrades ( including Anarchist Communists, Mutualists, Anarcho Vegans and Syndicalists) and quickly became an active part of the alliance of opposition to the government and subsequently the current wave of demonstrations.
They told Organise! “our short term aim is to overthrow the current corrupted oligarchy taking over Lebanon and our long term goal is to achieve anarchism in Lebanon and the region, either by building independent communes, or by transforming all the society into an anarchist one.”
Here is their statement of intent in English.
KAFEH! or Struggle! is an Anarchist Movement whose goal is to achieve a decentralized society without authority , and who upholds the values of liberty, social justice, egalitarianism, and secularism.
The word “KAFEH!” is an Arabic briefing of the term: “Effective Free Anarchist Cadres.”
The Premise of the movement is Anarchy or Libertarian Anti-Authoritarianism.
“KAFEH!” Movement rejects the authoritarian patriarchal dominant system in Lebanon which is a centralized establishment that incites sectarianism, and greedy capitalism in order to support allocating quotas , exploitation , and splitting power, resources and public wealth.
“KAFEH!” seeks to change the current status quo of the system into an extended decentralization consisting of small local communities (communes), each choosing its own self ruling system, respecting liberty , social justice, egalitarianism, and secularism.
“KAFEH!” aims to minimize the state’s duties to the collection of taxes from each & every community in order to provide social services and infrastructure equally distributed amongst all communities.
“KAFEH!” supports the principle of absolute individual freedom in life choices, beliefs, opinion, expression , ideas , and other principles based on the declaration of human rights.
“KAFEH!” insists on the necessity to change the current system by all its forms.
“KAFEH!” considers that any form of change can’t be true if it doesn’t include the protection of fauna and flora expressed by a pact amongst all communities.
“KAFEH!” declares itself the protector of the weak and of the oppressed, as well as of victims of injustice practiced by the current authoritarian patriarchal dominant system.