“Your Commune has been constituted. The vote of March 26 sanctioned the victorious revolution.”
26 March 1871https://www.marxists.org/history/france/paris-commune/documents/constituted.htm
With those words, the world’s first communist nation was born. In the wake of France’s defeat by Prussia in 1870, Marxists in Paris seized control of the city and declared themselves independent of the national government. The so-called Paris Commune would last only two months before French troops crushed it, but it would establish the precedent for a host of Marxist revolutions that were to follow.
One hundred and forty-nine years after the Paris Commune, the radical leftists in Seattle spearheaded by Antifa followed suit.
Today, in the U.S.?
A roughly six-block area in the Capitol Hill neighborhood of Seattle has been seized by left-wing militants. The Seattle Police have withdrawn from the area. Police barricades, which were originally erected to control rioters have been repurposed by the residents of this new “autonomous zone” to mark the border between the United States and this new “nation.” Signs on the barricades announce that once you cross the “border” you are now in “Free Capitol Hill.”
Antifa is actively calling for armed residents to man the barricades. Individuals and businesses within this “autonomous zone” have announced their intention to disassociate themselves from the United States and to support this new Marxist state. A map of the area tweeted by Andy Ngo, a journalist known for his work against Antifa, shows the “Captured Regime East Precinct (Abandoned Police Station with doors left unlocked lol),” along with areas marked “Commune Food Stations,” “CHFZ Commune Barricades,” “Relaxation & Dining Field (food regularly handed out + coffee bar),” and a “Stoa (Informal Congregational Area).”
The map also shows a “Regime encampment off-Broadway” and a “Regime Occupied Safeway (Police holed up here).”
The entire “autonomous zone” has been declared a “cop free zone.” Signs in the area call for defunding the police and declare “The cops will always be racist because capitalism requires inequality.”
Neither Seattle Mayor Durkan nor the Seattle Police Department have yet taken any steps to challenge the emergence of “Free Capitol Hill.” On the contrary, both the Mayor and the Chief of Police have made clear they intend to offer no resistance. In announcing the decision to abandon the police station in the area the Mayor had this to say… “In an effort to proactively de-escalate interactions between protestors and law enforcement outside the East Precinct, Chief Best and [Seattle Police Department] officers have removed barricades surrounding the East Precinct while safely securing the facility…Keeping demonstrations peaceful must be a joint effort between our community members and law enforcement. I am hopeful that tonight, with these operational changes, our city can peacefully move forward together.”
Seattle Police Chief Carmen Best framed the decision to pull police out of the area as an exercise in “trust and de-escalation.”
Yesterday a proclamation of sorts promulgated by the residents of the new “autonomous zone” announced a series of demands directed at both the mayor of Seattle and the government of the state of Washington. These demands included:
The abolition of the police and the entire criminal justice system.
The banning of the use of force for any reason.
The retrial of any person of color serving a sentence for the commission of a violent crime.
The immediate release of all individuals arrested in what is referred to as “the George Floyd Rebellion.”
An end to prosecutorial immunity for police officers.
The abolishment of imprisonment.
That hospitals and care facilities of Seattle employ black doctors and nurses specifically to care for black patients.
Militants from the Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone then stormed Seattle’s city hall, occupied it, and demanded the city’s mayor step down, before finally leaving and returning to their enclave in the early morning hours of Wednesday.
Journalists have now been expelled from the “autonomous zone.” There is growing buzz on the internet about the “autonomous zone” expanding into Cascadia, an independent, decidedly anti-American and anti-capitalist socialist republic. That buzz includes talk about “defensive militias” and the establishment of additional “autonomous zones” in other cities in the Northwest.
For the last two weeks, as the nation has been rocked by violence, stores looted, citizens assaulted, and property destroyed we have been subjected to a barrage of commentary from the usual suspects in the so-called mainstream media. That commentary predictably enough has advised us to ignore the evidence in front of us, to characterize what was happening as simply peaceful protests and, when all else failed, to sleep well at night knowing that whatever pain we were experiencing – we deserved it.
Here is the reality.
George Floyd’s death is meaningless to the people driving the anarchy and domestic terrorism in our streets. His killing was useful as a pretext to set our cities on fire. Nothing more. The radicals now occupying the “autonomous zone” in Settle and threatening to create similar enclaves elsewhere are not focused on justice, reform, or making progress through the existing legal and electoral systems.
These individuals are Marxists. They intend the destruction of our democratic government and our capitalist economic system. In the short term, as it was in the first heady days of the Russian Revolution and so many others that followed the Paris Commune, that will all be cast in terms of people-power, love and tolerance. And, then, as reality sets in, the truth will emerge.
Someone will have to decide who arms the militia that mans the barricades. Someone will have to decide what those militias are authorized to do and not do. Someone will have to decide what constitutes a crime and what form of punishment will fit that crime.
The answers won’t come from a representative, democratic system, because that system will have been burnt to the ground. It will come from the mob and from the rabble rousers, who for their own ideological reasons, unleashed that mob. The true face of the “revolution” will emerge, as it always does, and it will be ugly.
In the mush that passes for the mind of Seattle’s mayor maybe weakness and capitulation seem like viable strategies. They are not.
Maybe abandoning American citizens to be held hostage in a lawless netherworld in the heart of one of our great cities seems like a good plan. It is not.
This is revolution. This is insurrection. This is sedition. This is 1871 all over again, and we must ensure that this commune is just as short-lived as the first.