Asking the good questions…

It’s often difficult to ask the good questions. Frequently we end up with some superficial opinions which don‘t even approach the core of things. In this society where the bleat of the politicians and the powerful seems to dominate everything, it couldn‘t be more different. And it’s often because
space is lacking that we cannot ask the good questions.

If we want this space, we have to take it and this is not possible without a blow. During years we almost never heard talk about what’s happening on the inside of the prison walls in this country. Nevertheless prison was never far away, we all have a friend or a close one inside. But silence reigned.

During the last year, this silence has clearly been broken, because prisoners took the space to make themselves heard. They revolted in different ways; by confronting the jailers and the cops, by partly destroying the infrastructures of these hated institutions or by putting fire to them. Many prisoners tried to escape individually or collectively to quench their thirst for freedom.

This agitation allows asking the good questions. Who is filling prison? How come that most of those who people the prisons are condemned for crimes against property like thievery, robbery,…? When we start asking ourselves these kind of questions, we perceive rapidly how prison is just a mere instrument of the State to maintain the poor in line, to isolate the rebels, to protect the rich and powerful. And then we easily understand that this society is only based on two things: exploitation and domination.

Often prisoners revolt starting from the specific conditions of their confinement (beatings, isolation, lack of food, lack of walks, not enough visits,…). Like when recently about sixty prisoners occupied the yard in Dendermonde to pose some demands. A few days later, the same thing happened in the prison of Merksplas whereas less then two months ago a straight mutiny exploded in the prison of Andenne. We share their revolt and express our solidarity by fighting prison from the outside – with them, as accomplices in a struggle for freedom.

The story neither begins nor ends with prison. Daily, tens of people are deported because they don‘t have valid documents. These undesirables are locked up in camps called ‚closed centers‘ where they await their expulsion. Under the threat of deportation, these persons (even when they are temporarily regularized) are forced to deal with miserable working conditions that recall the ones they fled. In this way, the system assures a cheap working force. Also in these camps, revolts occur and people try to escape. Also here our solidarity translates itself in the struggle against all borders, nations and States.

The series of mutinies and escapes in the prisons and the camps didn‘t pass unnoticed and the State prepares its reply. They have constructed high security cells in the prisons of Lantin and Brugge, real prisons inside of the prison, to bury alive the most refractory prisoners. They plan the construction of two new prisons (Namur and Dendermonde), two prisons for minors (Everberg and somewhere in Walloon), two psychiatric prisons (in Gent and Antwerp) and two closed centers (Zaventem).

Facing their arrogance and their apparent invulnerability, let’s diffuse this revolt and let’s sabotage the machine of imprisonment.

Death to prison and its world

Freedom for all