Title: De Profundis
Subtitle: A Communiqué from the Conspiracy of Cells of Fire: Public Self-Crticisim
Date: 2015
Source: interarma.info
Notes: Translated by Inter Arma

We had no intention of contributing to the continuing of the public downfall and inner cannibalism that broadened with skillful architecturing by the police, journalists and the miserable interview given by Xsiros[1]. But misery reigns…

I. Once a snitch….always a traitor

What is more infuriating than the snitch of 17th November[2] talking about morality… He who, in his preliminary statements in 2002 (they are published on internet) was whining and begging the cops to go easy on him, as a return for his cooperation with persecution authorities.

What is more challenging than the snitch being presented as the critic of the “movement”. He who, until this day, hasn’t even apologized to his former comrades for the life-long sentences he “offered” them with his unbiased confessions to the counter-terrorism agency (without them even so much as slapping him).

What is more contradictory than the ridiculous aspiring petty leader asking for the collective procedures and diversity to be respected. In his raving where he was impersonating the reincarnation of Karaiskakis[3], he was exhibiting an authority complex that was testing the nerves of the comrades, who were putting up with him and helping him to escape for an entire year, with huge patience and by risking their life and freedom from the cops.

What was more boxing than us constantly delaying our total rupture with him, which would free us from his mental stench. Unable to support even himself, with his expulsion from our circles, it would have been a matter of hours before he was caught by the police and based on his snitching history, there was the danger of snitching the escape plan we had organized and which he was constantly sabotaging. Besides, it wouldn’t have been his first time snitching…

What was more WRONG than our own contradiction. While at first we supported him with all our power considering him our comrade, we have in fact written “once a guerrilla, always a guerrilla”, forgetting though that there is also “once a snitch, always a traitor”.

He betrayed our trust, our friendship, our comradeship and the solidarity we offered him, against a reality which, as the months were passing, revealed that he was a disgusting person, a loathsome subhuman addicted to lies.

Him ending up being chased from all the prisoners, from all prison wings[4] and being under the protection of the prison agency, is to be expected. Not because, as media say, the prisoners think that he is responsible for the creation of maximum security prisons (type C), because he violated his prison leave[5]. If this was right, then there shouldn’t be clashes with the police during demonstrations because they cause repression and the urban guerrilla should stand down because counter-terrorism bills are being proposed.

Xiros is being chased by everyone for the emetic dirt he dared to utter against us inside prison and for the stigma of the snitch that he will carry for ever. He and the likes of him, ridiculed urban guerrilla and smeared a big part of it, turning it into a history of snitching and betrayal.

At least we, with our “mafia-like practices” never betrayed our ideas and our comrades. But even those who were arrested and accused of being members of our group without having anything to do with it, no matter if we don’t consider some of them comrades or if we even consider some of them our personal enemies, the only thing sure is that there wasn’t a snitch or a traitor among them.

II. From the weapons of criticism… to self-criticism

The following text is our own inner mirror. Distorted and quite blurry after its pubic procession in the altar of the media, it remains a part of us and we will not pretend that we don’t recognize it. Loving responsibility means not being afraid of being exposed, not to sell out yourself for the sake of an unwrinkled “good” public image. So, let all idols be torn down and first of all our own.

III. Breaking the encryption

We never loved the powerful ones. Our conscience and our heart always chose the side of the hunted, the persecuted, the wanted. When one decides to leave prison by violating his prison leave our help and support are granted. Who can say to someone to return back to prison? Who will refuse to wholeheartedly lend a hand to someone who violates his five-day controlled freedom in order to go underground? We surely won’t. But life is not revolutionary poetic verses nor theories for all uses. Life is the choices that have a past, a present and a future. Life is the actions which, in order to have perspectives, should also have memory.

Blaming others is the easiest thing to do…. “We didn’t know…, We miscalculated….”. But the truth is simpler: We know, we knew and we chose to miscalculate…

With full awareness, we remained indifferent to the book of history. The summer of 2002, the arrests of the members of 17th November, the snitching and the witnessed testimonies (with the exception of those who honored their organization) are one of the darkest spot in the history of urban guerrilla in Greece. They are the black pages that are memorable for all of us. Besides, even if we invoked selective “amnesia” it would still be against us.

So there was a history of imprisoned individuals with many life-long sentences because some other people “talked” to the police. Until today, there are loose ends, things that haven’t been told in the way and with the intensity they should have. But speaking about ourselves, the heaviest thing is that with our choice we brought back from the dead the most appalling part of this history that was in lethargy for year.

One could ask himself: “Doesn’t one has the right to rewrite the book of his own history?” Unfortunately, history gave as the answer to that, in the worst manner.

There are things that cannot be unwritten and snitching is one of them. But even if one wants to rewrite the book of his life, he must cleanse himself by making public self-criticism and apologize in a bold and humble way. But as we said, we will only speak about us here. We knew all these and we decided to walk past history. Were we fooled by anyone? Obviously not.. We consciously chose “revolution justifies the means” and finally the only thing sure is that “revolution doesn’t sanctify people”[6].

We remained indifferent to the loose ends of a history of snitching because we were in a rush, we wanted to continue our own history, to regain our freedom and rejoin the battle of the anarchist urban guerrilla. But we forgot that nothing beautiful and new can be written in dirty, used pages.

And so wear, paranoia and ugliness were spread like a plague over everything nice we wanted to built. We wanted to free ourselves and at the same time we were imprisoning comrades, friends and ourselves in a maze of tactics and unorthodox approaches. We learned that ugliness can’t fight ugliness the hardest way. For a whole year and with the untiring efforts of an ant, we built everything from almost nothing. We organized a plan (away from the filthy lies that we allegedly didn’t care about the lives of irrelevant citizens) that would humiliate the heart of the prison system. With a bomb weighing 150 pounds, placed into a barrel with a conical head following the patent of EFP (a methodology followed by the Iraqi guerrillas against U.S. buildings in order to direct the shock wave with piercing power) we would tear down the prison wall nullifying the possibility of harming irrelevant people. A plan that needed thousands of hours of preparation from our comrades outside the walls. But even if 300kg, not the 150kg we were going to use, were to just be placed into a vehicle, the shock wave would only hit the prison wall a little, without inflicting the necessary damage and the explosion would have been expanded to weaker spots, like the surrounding alleys, causing huge human losses. Besides, this is what our experience has shown us, from the attack our group carried out with a time bomb against a part of the wall of Korydallos prison in 2010. In this case, where there obviously couldn’t have been a warning call in order for the buildings to be evacuated, we had to find a solution. After months of searching we decided to use the Explosive Formed Penetration (EFP) method. In short, let us say that in this method, one uses a concrete vessel, on which a steel conic head is placed proportioned according to the size of the vessel and the material of the target. During the explosion, the shock wave is directed only towards the targeted direction and turns the steel head into a projectile with tremendous speed that impacts directly on the target. The vessel and the head we were going to use for this plan, was the “barrel with explosive material” found in Anavissos. Obviously, there were trials in smaller scale, in order to be sure about the results. Trials that required time and there was danger for our comrades outside the walls, but they had to happen. When they took place in remote areas and we observed that the shock wave focuses where we wanted and that the effect on the surrounding area was minimum, the plan was set on the move. As an extra precaution, although it wasn’t needed due to this method, there would have been sand bags around the barrel, inside the vehicle, so that the minimum shock wave that would direct towards other directions would be absorbed. This part of the escape plan and the plan in general, were designed in a way that no unplanned loss of human life was going to happen.

A blow that would have never have happened before, against the ugliest monument of captivity. And most importantly, a liberation that would lead us back to battle and to the armed paths of urban guerrilla. But, in the name of a beautiful cause, we started to cut back on behaviors, obsessions, delusions, problems, arrogance, on everything that made us anarchists. And all of this in order not to lose the opportunity, the moment, the phase, the bang, our freedom… And at the end we lost everything. And more importantly, we lost people. People who didn’t have the dark marks of an embarrassing past but a crystal present and a fiery future, went underground and people that had no idea who they were helping or had nothing to do with it were imprisoned. The responsibility is mostly ours. We are not talking so much about the result (we are not instigators of everything and as far as our comrades are concerned, the decisions were taken in equal terms) but for the appalling scenery we created.

IV. The “dismissal”, Nechayev and the mail[7]

We neither confirm not deny anything. However, no bigger lie exists than half truth (and in some cases no truth at all). Journalists, in collaboration with the police did what they know best: they butchered the truth on the altar of lie. They spoke about “cementing”, “massacre”, “leadership’s commands”, “causing tens of unsuspecting victims”, while they went as far as trying to depoliticize Conspiracy of Cells of Fire by saying that we entrusted the actualization of our actions to “common criminals”. At the same time, the plunder of truth continued with the selective reference to excerpts of our personal mail. When personal becomes public then the darkness of the secrets we keep is deformed by the light of an interrogation projector that distorts everything. Whoever feels so “clean” not to be troubled that his personal diary will be on television, his thoughts, secrets, vices, vexation and anger on the newspapers frontpage, then he has already died of boredom.

Whatever is shared between the members of a team or between some friends has a code that cannot be broken by decoding. It is the encoded surplus of an internal story which has a past and is not to be publicly narrated. It’s a code of relationship understood and interpreted by those who participate in the story. If everything confidentially said by a friend to another and by a comrade to another was to be published, then we’d be doomed to stay mute. One should consider this the next time he shares a secret, a “vice” or something due to his anger against a friend. How would he feel if that was publicly mentioned ? Especially when in this public cannibalism, the cops add their own touches of obscene lie. At the same time they want to implicate other irrelevant people and friends by adding their names to new case files.

V. The bomb “failures”

A failure was our choice to “erase” history and not the fact that some bombs didn’t explode. Comrades are not judged by their operational capabilities and skills, but by the relations and friendship that unites them. There was the failure and not on whether the detonation functioned or the clock worked. No matter if one hundred bombs explode, not matter if one thousand pistols find the target, when comradeship, respect, esteem and dignity are absent, the failure remains. The real fault occurs when comradeship meets paranoia. But, as we speak about self-criticism and not about others, the fact that we are in prison means that at some… turn of the road, we made our own operational mistake. So, the sinless (and not the idle) shall cast the first stone…

VI. The leading team of Conspiracy of Cells of Fire

If we wanted to be leaders we would have chosen some other path, more safe and more secure, and not the anarchist urban guerrilla warfare. We are a community of comrades and friends, without commanders and underlings. We only command ourselves. Of course we’re not the same. Each of us has his own skills, others more, others less, but different. However, we all give everything for the Conspiracy we planned and we’ll never going to abandon. We have no leading members, we are Olga, Giorgos, Michalis, Gerasimos, Christos, Haris, Panagiotis, Damianos, Giorgos, Theofilos and we have one name… Conspiracy of Cells of Fire.

VII. Relations with common criminals

Inside prison we learned that there are no labels for the signalization of people. We don’t appropriate nor the rhetoric of prosecutors, neither the characterizations of the case files. Every human is judged by his actions and choices. That’s why we hate the dusty ideological labels that effortlessly classify people. We learned that life goes beyond the orthodox political definitions. The values of dignity, friendship, solidarity are not taught in glass ideological auditoriums but in the consistency that everybody shows in the difficulties of life. Because there are many who speak about anarchy, but only a few who talk about the way they live it.

VIII. Summary

One could ask, “would you say all these if the escape was successful ?”. To be honest, we don’t know. However, history is not written with assumptions… We designed and organized a plan which, while operationally and logistically was impressive beyond every imagination, its internal was held with “staples” and with incredible patience to not break the abscess. The cancel and its results plunged us in the mire we ourselves nourished for a year. We played with our contradictions and found ourselves facing them multiplied.

We know that young comrades and friends felt embarrassed and numb towards what has been said for us by cops and journalists. That’s why we oughted to publicly talk and say truths that hurt us. This is, however, the only way to create a new beginning. Via self-criticism and the violent uprooting of the past from inside us. We now have no time for sorrow. It is often said that a mistake is the shortest road towards a new discovery. That’s why self-criticism doesn’t mean retreat. Instead, we tighten again our fists and sharpen our knives. We remain stubborn and unrepentant. And if we fall, we will stand up again, if we lost, we’ll fight again, if we found ourselves locked, we’ll find the key.

That’s who we are and these are our mistakes. What we have said still stands…

Through our ashes we light the fire again, a sign for our chased and wanted ones…

Let’s go again until the end.

Because our day will come…




LET’S CREATE 10, 100, 1000 FAI – IRF CELLS


Conspiracy of Cells of Fire – Imprisoned members’ cell

Olga Ekonomidou

Michalis Nikolopoulos

Giorgos Nikolopoulos

Haris Hatzimihelakis

Christos Tsakalos

Gerasimos Tsakalos

Giorgos Polydoros

Panagiotis Argyrou

Damianos Bolano

Theofilos Mavropoulos

Translator’s notes:

[1] Xiros has given an interview to Makis Triantafilopoulos (a very well known journalist scum with deep connections in the political parties, state agencies, local capitalists and the fascists of Golden Dawn) and his site Zougla.

[2] 17th of November was a Marxist-Leninist urban guerrilla group that was active from 1975 until 2002 in Greece. The comrades of CCF refer to the incidents that followed the group’s crack down by the authorities in 2002, when a bomb exploded in the hands of a member of the group. Xiros was a member of this group.>

[3] This is an ironic reference to a video-recorded speech to the people, published by Xiros after his escape from prison. Georgios Karaiskakis was one of the captains during the Greek revolution against the Turkish occupation in 1821 and he is a national and popular hero. His picture along with other similar historical characters were placed behind Xiros during his speech in the video.

[4] Xiros has been attacked four times by other inmates so far.

[5] After Xiros violated his prison leave, the media went mad. As a response to this hysteria, the former government proposed the bill about maximum security prisons (type C).

[6] The expression “revolution justifies the means” is “revolution sanctifies the means” in Greek.

[7] Parts IV,V, VI and VII refer to various things the cops claim and the media report. Among the evidence presented by the police, there were hundreds of handwritten notes, correspondence between the comrades and the people involved in the escape plan.. In one of these notes, CCF were allegedly saying that they would “dismiss” Xiros after the escape. Concerning the bomb failures, the cops claim that Xiros was responsible for the failed bombing at the police station of Itea and another one at a tax office which hasn’t been claimed by CCF or anyone else. The cops claim that CCF were going to execute Xiros (this is the way they interpreted the word “dismiss”) because of these failures, after the escape. What is more, journalists and cops once again talked about “the leading team” of CCF and their alleged “connections” with criminal bosses in prison.