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Antira 2016 report #2

2016-08-18 16.57.09

Antira – Giddys (guest commentary from FC United of Manchester)

As FC travelled to Detroit this weekend, so too did some of us to Hamburg. This weekend saw the annual Antira (Anti-Racism) tournament in Hamburg, held at the Millentor, home of F.C. Sankt Pauli.

The tournament is by invite only, and this year we were welcomed as representatives from FC. Seven of us made the trip over, four flying into Hamburg on Thursday and the other three arriving Friday morning. Thursday night saw the “welcoming party” at the Jolly Roger pub, a stone’s throw from the ground.

With reduced prices for people attending the Antira, the drinks were in full flow as the four of us made it to the Jolly on opening night, with people swelling onto the pavement in outside the bar. French, Spanish and Italian accents mixed while we made friends with a group from the German city of Darmstadt, all against a backdrop of gathered Cypriots lighting flares and singing vociferously into the night. The party was still in full flow as we slunk off for an early night at 3am.
With sore heads we met the others from the red-eye flight on Friday morning, completing the group. We headed down to the port for some touristy pictures and sampled the Currywurst and Mackerel rolls before heading up to the Millentor for our first taste of the tournament.

Due to the size of the tournament the club allowed it to be held in the ground, with the pitch being divided into 3 for the games. The Gegengrade, the large stand running along the side of the pitch, was opened up to host the bars, food stalls and the many merchandise kiosks. We were all shocked and impressed with the level of organisation; there was a meaty bar run by Skinheads Sankt Pauli, a Vegetarian Bar, Coffee stand, and a separate alcohol bar. On top of this, there were around 10-15 stalls from groups taking part, selling their own club/group merchandise. As we found a spot for the afternoon on the terrace, we realised the size of the event. With 20+ teams taking part, we estimated there must have been around 500 people in attendance. The sun shone down, we drank a few too many €1 Astras and enjoyed the football. Built into the stand, the “Fanladen”, or fan rooms, which are controlled independently by fan groups, is the perfect location to continue the party into the night. Between the Fanladen party and a few bars in the Sankt Pauli district we found ourselves getting the morning train back to our digs at about 5.30. Again, the party was still going on when we left.

Saturday afternoon was much of the same; cheap beer, sunshine, loud music and football. At the end of the day’s games we took the opportunity to have a kick about on the pitch and explore the empty away end. Standing on the field with the stands – three of them adorned with terraces – towering above us, we all agreed how far behind we are in England. The away end was awash with graffiti & stickers from visiting teams, and scars of where smoke bombs and flares had fizzled on the steps. The abundance of bars and fences, perfect for both flags and climbing, seemed like it had been designed with a boisterous following in mind.

The fences of both end terraces had been covered in plastic sheeting for the base of a graffiti wall. By the end of the Saturday both walls were covered with Tags from the teams represented. Graffiti in Germany, and especially Sankt Pauli, is a huge scene. The bars, walls, and street furniture surrounding the Millentor are covered in a patchwork of tags, art, and stickers. It seems engrained in the football culture, and adds a great sense of pride and territory to the area.

As the evening arrived, it brought with it three of my favourite moments of the weekend. First, the perfectly organised group photo. An hour slot was sensibly given to round everyone up and allow them to take their place on the huge terrace. As we walked out to find a spot, the loudspeaker barked over in English that “We need everyone in this block, everyone move to the right!” This drew chuckles from the English speakers. Over 500 people took their place, solidarity banners were unfurled, and pyro readied. There was an abundance of scarves, smoke masks and balaclavas.
On the signal came a wall of smoke and flashing, the fire-crackers echoed around the other empty stands. “ALERTA, ALERTA, ANTIFASCISTA!” went the chant. It put the one or two smoke bombs you occasionally get in England into perspective.

Then it was time to make our way out of the ground for the march to a squat where a party was being held later in the evening. As the crowd waited outside the stand we were over-looked by the steps entering the ground. After 5 minutes, a lady who was clearly involved with the weekend’s organisation emerged wielding a number of carrier bags and a hold-all. The second of the best moments was watching this lady delving deeply into her bags and throwing out goodies to the crowds below. It was like a kids’ party, though instead of sweets being thrown it was all sizes and types of pyrotechnics! After the bags were emptied we were ready to depart. Photographers at the front, along with a couple of organisers, and we began to walk in formation across the waste land behind a huge Football Fans Against Homophobia banner.

After a few minutes we made it onto the road. Buses stopped, cars turned round and drove back from where they had come and we marched in unison toward to squat. My third favourite moment of the weekend was observing the expressions of the on-looking public (and may I add, the support) while we marched along the centre of the road in a haze of smoke and bangers for 20 minutes. It was truly an amazing feeling. The public in this area are not unaccustomed to sights of the Ultras marching through town, and neither are the police. The Polizei were present but only to block the roads later on; there were no cameras thrust in faces, no riot gear, no heavy handed sergeants throwing their weight about; just a couple of cars to make sure the mob had a clear march on the squat. It was beautifully refreshing.

We arrived at the squat and the crowd hung around, mingling on the street, drinking cheap beer before going inside to listen to the bands (including Cardiff-band The Oppressed, who have played at the 0161 Festival at the Miners in Moston). We slunk off to watch Ronaldo win the Champions League final from a late night Waffle Café… which obviously, like most places in Hamburg, served Alcohol.

Some, nursing a hangover and a come down, left for the last train while the rest headed to a night in a squat. Rote Flora is an old theatre in the area which has been squatted since 1989. In 2013 the district had plans to re-develop the building but, thanks to huge street protests, backed down with their plans in 2014.

After a solid lie-in with one of the few DVDs in our accommodation (Die Hard, German version) we emerged for the final day of our trip. Sankt Pauli’s women’s team were playing their promotion decider behind the Millentor stadium. Around 400 people watched Sankt Pauli draw 1-1 and set up a penalty shoot-out in which they won with the final penalty of the 5. Even with a relatively small crowd the team still did the German tradition of joining hands and acknowledging the support from all sides of the crowd with “Hey! Hey! Hey!” A joy to watch.

We had one final supper at a restaurant where one of Ultrà Sankt Pauli works as a waiter, tipped generously, and said our good-byes. We left feeling wholly disorganised in comparison, but with the feeling that Sankt Pauli is a special club, in a unique area of a great city.

First published here: https://www.facebook.com/fctifo/posts/1731240123827741

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Antira 2016 report #1

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From this week on we will publish a report a about the antira from the alerta member groups. We start with the Barflies from Prague. The articles will be in the language of the several groups.

 

Antira  – Barflies United

Když jsme se v zimě dohodli, že po dvou letech přijmeme pozvánku na fotbalový turnaj Antira do Hamburku, rozhodli jsme se tentokrát pojmout přípravu úplně jinak.

Že se už dopředu rozdělíme na ty, co se turnaje zúčastní jako hráči, na ty co se zúčastní jako jejich povzbuzovatelé a konzumenti zažitků, na ty co zmáknou oboje a na ty co se budou podílet na vzdělávacím programu.

Šli jsme dokonce tak daleko, že jsme ve svých řadách určili trenéra a rozepsali tréninky. Leč nač to dlouze opisovat: „Šedá, můj příteli, je všechna teorie, a žití zlatý strom se zelená.“ Trenéra jsme měli a trénink jsme do konce května stihli jeden.

I tak jsme se ve čtvrtek 26. května vydali, vyzbrojeni dobrou náladou i úmysly, novým merchem a zásobou skvělé bránické jedenáctky, směr Hamburk v počtu 20 účastníků. K Millerntor Stadionu, kde se celý turnaj odehrával a kde jsme byli ubytovaní, jsme s drobnými problémy dorazili už v předvečer turnaje.

Program pro nás začal už poznávacím večírkem v kultovním baru Jolly Roger, kde jsme se seznámili s naším nalosovaným spolutýmem Brigadas Amarillas, fanoušky Cádiz FC. Sportovní část turnaje začínala až v pátek ráno, takže jsme měli dostatek času na přivítání s fans ze všech koutů Evropy zvláště pak s našimi místními milými přáteli ze Skinheads St. Pauli a s naší slovenskou družbou z Ultras Trenčín, kteří byli dokonce tak laskaví a dva členy naší výpravy do Hamburku dopravili.

Naše sportovní výkony by se rozhodně nedaly shrnout do jediné věty. Při nástupu k prnímu duelu s fanoušky Rayo Vallecano z nás přímo sálalo nadšení, zdravá agresivita i sebevědomí.  J Jako už obvykle jsme nastoupili v kompletních venkovních dresech Bohemians 1905. V týmu Barflies letos nastoupili staří zasloužilí členové, čerstvé posily i, doufáme, budoucí opory týmu. Tohle všechno ale k vítězství nestačilo. V dalších zápasech už se nám tak špatně nedařilo, zvláště stojí za vyzdvihnutí match s Ultras St. Pauli, které jsme porazili 5:1. Díky dobře nastavenému systému jsme postoupili do dalšího hracího dne, kterého jsme se, hlavně pro vlastní organizační zmatky, nezúčastnili.

Ale Antira není jen o fotbale. Její neméně důležitou součástí je i řekněme více intelektuální program, na kterém byla návštěva památníku bývalého koncentračního tábora z druhé světové války Neuengamme, dále pak diskuzní fórum s tématy: fanouškovských karet, uprchlické krize a jejího důsledku v podobě vzrůstajícího vlivu pravicových radikálů nejen na dění ve společnosti, ale i na tribunách. V rámci programu proběhl i mítink Alerta Network, kde byli Barflies do tohoto uskupení antifašistýckých fans přijati. Spolu s námi vstoupili mimo jiné i Ultras Trenčín. Příští Alerta mítink se odehraje pod naší taktovkou v Praze.

Antira je i kultura, která stejně jako sport přispívá k prohloubení vztahů mezi skupinami. Letos byl připraven sobotní koncert ve squatu Rote Flora legendární oi kapely The Oppressed. K Rote Floře jsme šli společně pochodem, kterého se zúčastnilo zhruba 2000 lidí. Koncerty ale proběhly i přímo na stadioně. Zvláště pak vystoupení hip hopové formace Microphone Mafia spoli 91-letou Mc Esther Bejarano, která přežila hrůzy holocaustu.

Jak jsem v úvodu předeslala, každý jsme si dopředu určili svoji roli. Někteří víc sportovali, někteří víc nasávali nejenom atmosféru, někdo se zúčastnil diskuzí, ale všichni dohromady jsme si to výborně užili, viděli staré známé a poznali nové tváře a těšíme se na příští ročník v Tel Avivu.

 

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New Alerta groups

We are happy to announce that four new members have just joined the Alerta Network at the last meeting in Hamburg.

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Ultras Trenčín (Trenchtown Gangsters) were formed in 2005, when a new generation of young punks and skins took control of the terraces. We took inspiration from the tradition of ultra groups in Europe and Slovakia, but we made sure not to promote xenophobia or racism, as the stands at most clubs at the time were, and still in many cases are, dominated by far-right groups.

Since our start, we have been open about our anti-fascist stance. We have made numerous antifascist ties and took part in various anti-racist events. This, of course, attracted the attention of the fascist and nazi-hooligan groups in Slovakia and confrontations became a regular thing.

Apart from our members taking part in various antifascist and political activities, as a group we co-organize a regular tournament/antifascist event – UAFA CUP. It started as an ad-hoc benefit to help fund Partizan Minsk in 2012, but it has grown into a regular annual, international event. Football, concerts, politics, discussions all mix at this benefit event, which is used to fund various social causes and projects.

Over the years, we have had to face problems with our club almost going bankrupt, confrontations with fascist and problems with the FA. We are now in our eleventh year of existence, we are still keeping strong and staying antifascist as the only relevant supporters group in Slovakia.

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White Angels Zagreb or in Croatian “Bijeli Anđeli Zagreb”

The name is first mentioned in 1989 and is officially registered in 2000. But the generation that become 100% Antifa and Antira started going in matches around 2006.

There are three generations of WA. First one from 1989-1996. That one was just like all other group in Croatia during the war. We even had some members of BBB in the crew then. Numbers then were around 50. So the group was pretty much nationalized with a lot of Croatia flags.

Then the second generation came around 1999 and we founded the fan-club.

In 2002 our club won the first league and our numbers went to 200. After that football mafia entered the club and started their robbing and destroying the club that lasts even until today.

Around 2006 the third generation started its path, with a lot of punks, skins and other alternative scene members. Then we started to send Antifa messages. Soon local AFA people started to go to the stands, So now we are a group of around 35 and we support our own fan owned club called ZAGREB 041. Club is founded on 01.12.2014 and is comlitly fan owned and run and it plays in croatia 7th division. First and only antifa and antira club in croatia and ex-yugoslavia

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Ultras Sakhnin 03

Antifascist action group

Ultras Sakhnin was formed in 2003 by supporters of FC Bnei Sakhnin – the only Arabic team within the Israeli Football first division.

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Barflies United Praha

BARFLIES are Barovi Povaleci/Rude Boys Bohemians (Prague) & St. Pauli Skinheads (Hamburg) who love Bohemians 1905, FC St. Pauli, beer and fun and hate nazi scum! SOMETIMES ANTISOCIAL, ALWAYS ANTIFASCIST!

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GIALLOROSSA MERANO – un amore che non finisce „mai“

Our 10th anniversary year draws slowly to a close, and sadly this period has, to put it mildy, not gone well. We love to look back at the glory days in Pala. With pyro, smoke, strobos and wild, unchallenged displays every single Friday, a perfect start to the much anticipated weekend. Wonderful years before promotion to the Serie B and the move into the hall, and the changes that those two aspects brought about.
In the beginning, the move didnt appear to have a negative effect on our support and membership numbers. However, slowly but surely, time-served members (important to our existence and good friends) started to leave the group. Some missed the party atmosphere of the Pala era, something that failed to reoccur in the hall. Others moved abroad, or work got in way.
There is one thing I want to make clear at this stage. This is in no way a cricitism of those members who made the terrace what it was for so many years, but who have now found a new direction. Without them, without us, we would never have experienced the good times we had.
Nevertheless, many older members will have recognised that their Brigata wouldn’t be around much longer, as the void left was almost impossible to fill. Today with a heavy heart, we must admit that this fear, for better or for worse, has now become reality. The reasons why are easy to sum up.
On the one hand, the core of the group was made up of one(!) big group of friends, which was fundamental to the friendly atmosphere and wonderful moments. This meant, however, that the group was less attractive for new potential members, as feeling part of things seemed more difficult when confronted with what could have appeared to have been a „clique“. On the other hand, many of our members didnt become part of the ultra scene through an initial interest in football, but rather were drawn to it through the friendly atmosphere within the group and the prospect of „heillousn Keil“ on a weekend and the legendary „Oscholtfaktor“ at the edge of the pitch. The result was that the hardcore started to break up, and it wasn’t possible, naturally with the odd exception, to recruit new, motivated members – something fanscenes normally do to cope with churn within a group. For this reason, after long, intensive discussions, we decided to place group activities on ice for an undefined period of time.
This decision was extremely painful, and wasn’t one that was easy to make. Those who attend matches though must however understand why. In recent times, it wasnt that seldom that our friends from Obermais were in greater numbers! And that was when we were playing at home! In our own hall! Thats not how we want our group to be remembered. As a result, we decided to call it a day in our 10th year of existence, so that the memory of our group is preserved.
On behalf of our group, I would like to thank our friends from the Spar town, without whom we would surely have given up sooner. Thank you for everything Curva Sud! Likewise, all of us look back fondly on the drunken exploits with our friends from Innsbruck, Vienna and Dornbirn. Thanks lads and lasses – we love you!
So, back to the topic at hand. We want to conclude things in suitable surroundings, therefore at the first play-off game of our red and yellow heroes, we plan to exit with a bang. We invite everyone to join us, draw the group to a close, but with one final unforgettable chapter! The match is on the 16th April. Further details will follow, but we currently envisage the following plan:
  • Approx. 13:00: Meeting in the Hall – with free beer!
  • 16:00: Match starts with a choreo and the kind of support to match the occasion– with „tamisch viel Hoss!“
  • After the final whistle: march to Pala and a little bit of pyro (goodbye photo with the banner „10 Anni BGR“)
  • As our „Ost-West“ Club isn’t available, we will look for an alternative (the search is proving tough at the moment though)
  • If we can’t find a suitable location, we will find a suitable pub in the spar town!

German and Italian version

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Vamos Bien: Call for international solidarity

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Vamos Bien calls for international solidarity  with Amedspor’s ultras group Barikat from all Antifa groups overall Europe. –

Turkey is getting through a political chaos, due to street wars happening in eastern Turkey. After peace process collapsed, government started a new phase of war in the whole country.

Now,  we are facing with this new phase in the stadiums. Amedspor, a team from Diyarbekir (Amed is the Kurdish name of the city), played against Istanbul Basaksehir, a team backed by government. Even with the 3 division difference between two clubs, first game ended with a draw even with the 2 red cards of Amedspor. On 28th of January, the second leg of the match-up took place in Istanbul and we attended the game as Vamos Bien also with our friendly group Barikat from Amedspor (Barricade in Turkish).

Before the match, in addition to the traditional precautions, they asked supporters’ Identity numbers, they checked two times from shoes to deeps of your clothes. Inside of the stadium, there were riot-polices in everywhere included the away supporters’ watching areas. During the match, we were with special ‘sport bureau’ employees of police next to our seats. In the match, in addition to the great effort by the referee to stop amazing play by Amedspor, referees didn’t end the match until Basaksehir scored the second goal in the extra times to catch equality. After this score, two Basaksehir players came in front of Amedspor supporters and made a formal military salute to us. These salute was in purpose of tensing us up.

After the match, police made us waited inside of a narrow corridor and pushed us more and more. After waiting for a while, they allowed us to leave stadium one by one. We realized the reason behind that was to check the faces of fans and put us under arrest. Now, tens of our friends have taken into custody. Surprisingly, they are not in the sport bureau of police, but counter-terror branch. Against all rights according to the law, the members of Barikat has been faced with violence by the police. They have been charged with “traitor to the state, membership of terorist organisations”. Members of Barikat has always been sensitive about one fact: Supporting only football team Amedspor, no direct slogans that can be used for provocation.

This shows us the pressure of police will increase against us who follows hopes in peace in the country. We know that the police and the government were offended by the chant we sang during the game; “If kids weren’t be dying, they could come to games!”

Freedom for Barikat members! Freedom for Ultras!
– Vamos Bien – Fenerbahçe Ultras, Istanbul

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