Namur, Belgium – On the military exercise ‘Celtic Uprise’ (18th-25th September 2019)

For decades France has been one of the most important arms suppliers to the four corners of the world. With a flourishing industrial-military complex, it regularly carries out wars, supports irregular troops (such as that of general Haftar in Libya) and is also training on its own territory… and that of its neighbours. In the context of the ‘Motorized Ability’ program signed in June 2019 with one of NATO’s privileged partners, Belgium, it will supply the latter with 450 armoured vehicles (382 Griffon troops transporters and 60 Jaguar recognition vehicles), which will be delivered from 2025. Another aspect of this agreement is the strengthening of ‘strategic partnership’ between French and Belgian ground troops, which takes form in particular with conjoint training. This might seem quite banal, were it not for the fact that the army decided to train not only in barracks and appointed centres [1] that reproduce cities in miniature… but directly among the civilian population by performing exercises on a real scale.That’s how more than 1,000 Belgian and French military will occupy the provinces of Namur (ten municipalities located in the triangle Walcourt-Hastière-Couvin) and Hainaut (triangle Beaumont-Chimay-Froidchapelle) from 18th to 25th September 2019.
‘The goal is to start a French-Belgian military cooperation by integrating units in both countries in a civilian environment. It will also allow us to exchange skills and improve our inter-operations action in many sectors, such as radio communication and weapons use’. Yes, you read right, the goal is that of operating on a large scale ‘in a civilian environment’ as happened after the 2015 attacks, but above all that of carrying out an operation meant to improve ‘weapons use’. More precisely, 150 vehicles and 600 soldiers (fifty fifty for each of the States involved) will be deployed in twenty villages, with over 300 taking care of assignment (personnel, examiners, logistics) and… and… and… 100 soldiers who will play the part of rural insurgents euphemistically called ‘opponents’, who hide among the population.

This military training operation, called ‘Celtic uprise’ (a reference to Brexit), has ‘a fictitious country in crisis’ as its scenario, and the goal of the murderers in uniform is no longer simply hidden behind vague humanitarian pretexts to aid the population, as it was years ago, but this time it also officially includes ‘patrolling, making sensitive points secure’ and of course ‘antiterrorism actions’. It’s been known for some time that the army has been preparing for interventions within the European borders in case of urban insurrections or rural guerrillas, scenarios that even NATO projections took seriously. As for  us, it’s time we took seriously the proposals that insist on the need to be involved in it now [2]; to map carefully industries and technological companies, but also everything that is sensitive to the correct operational functioning of domination: communication networks, transport routes, resources and energy networks, strategic supplies of raw material and food; to develop technical skills and precise knowledge in order to put them out of use; to think today of forms of informal coordination and develop anarchist projectualities, valid in times of peace as well as of war, because the distinction between the two is no longer appropriate…
[1]. Such as the 12,000 hectares of CENTAC (combat training centre) in Mailly-le-camp (Aube) and the 6,000 hectares of CENZUB (urban action training centre) in Sissonne (Aisne).
[2]. For example: ‘Break ranks – Against war, against peace, for social revolution’, Hourriya internationalist anarchist pamphlets, October 2018, 168 pages. 
[Received via email, translation of a text published in].
Translated from Italian by act for freedom now!

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