We sit around on sofas, and yes, we even smoke hash. Sometimes we manage to make it through a whole movie before someone calls us, or knocks on the door – usually a West African refugee, or a crazed Moroccan landlord. Sometimes we just hear a voice carried up from the street all the way here, to the top floor. Above us is the roof, which is of course a whole floor in itself. Not in England, but here it makes perfect sense.
Almost four years ago I had a dream in a treehouse in France about this city. I didn’t know it then of course. I had been here before that, but for completely different reasons. I would have no idea that the dream was about a real place until much later, after everything had started here. The Tangerine Scene Dream.
I have seen many scenes since the dream, and now it sure matches them all. There is in-fighting, people with dreadlocks, people who run around like crazy trying to do too much and others sitting on sofas smoking hash, sometimes picking up a musical instrument.
So I guess that’s what I wanted. Someone once told me that scenes were counter-revolutionary, in that same forest where I had the dream in a tree. Seriously.
But you know, scenes aren’t counter-revolutionary. The sofa-dwellers and the rushers-around are two sides of a beautiful coin that is worth more than money.
Later that same person who’d said that got healed by a reiki healer who told me she was just paralysed in her mind. I found this hard to believe- when I knew her she had to always be pulled around on a bike trailer she playfully referred to as a taxi. For security reasons, she never said what state she came from, and I don’t even remember her pseudonym, so I guess she won that round.
What I’m trying to say is that Anarcho-punks should come to Tangiers, and probably other activist types should too, but I wouldn’t know. Wouldn’t claim to speak for them.
If you are used to squats and grime, punk and arguments, then come on down, the water’s fine. I mean, I’ve never swum in the sea here, because I’m afraid of judgmental stares, but hey.
Not all Moroccans are conservative, interfering arseholes, just like not all Brits are Tory scum. You will fund dodgy characters offering a range of drugs and other illicit pursuits, very, very easily. So come on down.
If you can play a bit of guitar or some other instruments, then definitely bring it. We need to make some noise down here. If you have some recording devices, or cameras, or you like to make art out of things you find on the street, or dance, or whatever the fuck, just come on down. Even if you just want to get drunk and chat shit all day, you can definitely do that too.
The more of us there are down here, just hanging out, being punks, the easier it will be for the ones who want to be all serious and activisty about everything, as it will provide a sea of European nutters for them to swim in undetected.
They are already pretty used to freaks from Europe down here anyway. I know hustlers who have the whole psychedelic hipster con routine down, and are living comfortably, supporting their families.
It can be stressful here, just living day to day, when you are used to an easy-going squatter lifestyle full of queer circus artists and people like that. If you are a woman you have to put up with a lot of nonsense, and worse, all the time. But still, there is really a struggle going on, and it feels really important to be part of it when you’re here.
You just got to have solidarity with West African people here in Morocco, really, and with most Moroccans too. What the fuck did they ever do to deserve all this? The cops are fucking dickheads down here, seriously. There are informers all over the place too. But still.
Showing solidarity doesn’t really mean you have to get arrested and shit – if you don’t want to put yourself on the front lines you don’t have to, and cops usually just leave you alone if you seem to just be another European tourist.
The important thing is to SHOW SOLIDARITY with the people who don’t have a fucking choice about whether they get arrested or not, just because of the colour of their skin and what it says or doesn’t say on their passport. That means SHOWING YOU GIVE A SHIT about them and people like them, that you’re not just another evil colonising exploitative bastard.
Just hang out with people, listen to their stories, tell them some of your own. Help them out in little ways, so they see you’re real. Treat people to a meal, some hash, coffee, whatever. If you have some spare medicine or some shit you can give it. Don’t get hung up about it, just do it if you feel like it, not out of guilt.
That’s real shit. That’s the kind of real shit people can SEE. No-one likes to be treated like its their –unpaid- job to help YOU understand their situation, or work hard to get you pictures for your activist blog or whatever, just to go home hungry at the end of it while you fly back to a nice house in Europe where they wish they could be. So just be real, be generous, don’t be a dick, etc.
This is about LOVE, and RAGE, and STRUGGLE. We want to fuck up the system right? And we aren’t really doing much about it right now. The whole squatting and rioting thing is at a pretty low point right now in the UK, so come on down to the sun, and get some ideas from people who are in a struggle they aren’t just going to give up on when they get bored, because they have no choice. They can’t change the colour of their skin, and why would they even want to? The fucking racist cops should change their MINDS
If you want Anarchy in the UK, just remember that the UK was BUILT ON SLAVERY AND COLONISATION of African people, and a fuck load of other people too. If you want Anarchy in the UK you need ANARCHY IN AFRICA as well.
Morocco is an African country. Lots of Moroccans have figured that out, but some are still confused, and think somehow that people from countries on the other side of the Sahara desert are like, totally different from them. For example, you hear people talk about ‘those Africans’, or ‘those Negros’ or ‘Sub-saharans’ or whatever.
As if Morocco is somehow NOT just a PUPPET GOVERNMENT for the Western Imperialists. The police all speak French for fucks sake. Moroccan people have to unite with other oppressed people around the world to stand a chance, not just keep sucking up to Europe hoping for some spare change and fucking over their African brothers and sisters in the process – and it’s not like there aren’t a lot of Moroccans who already know this, and are in fucking jail just for criticising the King or some shit.
At least British squatters KNOW we aren’t Africans, except it the whole ‘everyone comes from Africa way’. But anyway, AFRICA UNITE, is perfectly consistent with FUCK ALL AUTHORITY, and NO BORDERS! NO NATIONS!
Africa Unite is not about bringing in some kind of crazy Super State 1like the FUCKING E.U. is trying to be. Africa Uniting means tearing down the borders, smashing all the States, in this whole MASSIVE continent which is full of REVOLUTIONARY DREAMS.
Why do you think there are so many refugees and so many civil wars going on? It’s because people aren’t happy with the way things are, and are trying to do something to change things. Lots of people just want to be free, and want justice, want to stop being so poor while Westerners are so rich, and know their god-damn history better than most Europeans know theirs.
So that’s it, basically. The Western Imperialist system is NOT dead, and in fact continues to be built on the backs of African workers who are oppressed and exploited to fuck, so if you are European revolutionary, you need to be supporting revolutionaries in Africa, not just in Palestine or Chiapas or Indonesia or Bolivia or Tibet or wherever else is popular, and NOT just staying stuck in a little bubble in the UK thinking you are fighting the system just by wearing patches on your jacket that most people walking past can not even read.
Tangiers is that place you can see over the water if you go to the beach on the South coast of Spain, near Gibraltar. You know Gibraltar? They have a Morissons there where you can buy cider and baked beans. Good place to stock up if you plan to go to Tangiers afterwards.
Tangiers is a place where you’re gonna find African revolutionaries from more countries you can count, hanging out in the same few neighbourhoods. It really isn’t hard to meet them in the slightest, as lots of the time they have nothing to do expect try to avoid getting arrested and driven out to the middle of a desert hundreds of miles away.
If they manage to avoid that for long enough to hustle up some money somehow then they can try and buy a shit boat to cross the sea with, and often get caught, or else they can live in a forest for a while trying to muster up the strength, courage and numbers to charge at the border fences around Ceuta or Melilla – which are like Gibraltar is British but in Spain, except Spanish, and in Morocco, and are each surrounded by two, really fucking high fences topped with razor wire and guarded by murderous racist bastards on both sides.
So yeah, the least we can do is come down and hang out with them, try and show that we give a shit. The most we can do is a lot more. Somewhere in between is a load of really powerful revolutionary network-building and important human rights and humanitarian work. We might even SMASH THE BORDERS!
PS – fuck all that ‘white people shouldn’t have dreads’ bullshit that’s going around the UK scene right now. It’s just divisive and ridiculous. I am a white person with dreads, with shit loads of African revolutionaries as friends, who nearly all have dreads, and have never said anything but positive stuff about white allies having dreads. So if you’re a non-black anarcho-punk sick of people criticising you for having dreads, come down here and actually fight racism, away from all the posers who think the struggle is just about how you fucking dress. NO BORDERS!