At a protest sing-along against Governor Scott Walker at the Wisconsin Capitol on Friday, a member of the Red & Anarchist Action Network (RAAN) held up a huge banner saying "Class War" and then delivered a message to someone filming the event: "All you f**king Tea Party Baggers, It's coming, get ready."
Watch the video here, courtesy of Media Research Center (MRC):
Anarchists talking about anarchy may not be surprising. But considering RAAN's history, maybe it should be. What is RAAN? MRC describes it as a group with "a history of street protests and union pickets which turn violent." In fact, a website that appears to belong to the group even boasts a timeline of confrontation with authorities and violence against political parties and banks:
March 3rd, 2011 - Members of RAAN are involved in minor scuffles with police after the Wayne State University campus bookstore is briefly occupied during anti-austerity protests in Detroit, Michigan. The day before, several streets in the city center had been shut down by unpermitted protests in response to proposed state budget cuts to education.
March 2nd, 2011 - A crew identifying itself as "Derby City RAAN" smashes out windows at a CHASE Bank branch in Louisville, Kentucky, explaining in a communiqué that the bank was attacked for its funding of the I-69 NAFTA Superhighway project as well as mountaintop removal mining in Eastern Kentucky. Expressing solidarity with a similar attack by RAANistas in the city of Lexington less than a month earlier, this previously-unknown cell explains that, "Our actions may be small and nothing but a symbolic gesture, nonetheless we act against all that oppresses us in this world."
February 14th, 2011 - Affiliates of the network attack and vandalize an office of the Republican Party, again in central Kentucky. Their communiqué draws a direct parallel between this action and a similar attack against the Democratic Party in California several months earlier. The Kentucky RAANistas also make a point to criticize "postmodern insurrectionaries" who only advocate liberation in terms of "empty platitudes" and "meaningless rhetoric". The text concludes: "Merely supporting us is not enough. You cannot join RAAN, but you can become it."
February 4th, 2011 - RAANistas acting under cover of night use pieces of porcelain to smash out windows and doors at a CHASE Bank location in Lexington, Kentucky. A communiqué issued after the event singles out CHASE for its financing of mountaintop removal coal mining in the Appalachian region, as well as the "unpardonable atrocity" of reproducing the global economy on a daily basis. The claim of responsibility continues, "Nothing has been achieved by what we did other than an immediate yet temporary catharsis of our clenched desires. Even so, we dedicate this moment of rupture to the RAANista Tendency."
It seems it takes the "action" part of its name seriously.
By the way, if you're thinking group's name is a little confusing, you're not alone:
Can someone explain the concept of “Red Anarchist” to me?
With Communism the government has complete control over the production and distribution of goods and all the resources and it is shared in the society equally.
Communism is total government control…Anarchy = no government. I don’t see how they are able to reconcile that…
Also confusing? Protests resumed last week against Scott Walker's policies despite the fact the state added 13,000 private sector jobs in June -- the most for any month since September 2003.