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“An Organisation of Militants” The Federación Anarquista Uruguaya

Author’s Note:

A number of years ago I chanced upon a pamphlet, The Federación Anarquista Uruguaya; Crisis, Armed Struggle and Dictatorship 1967-1985, compiled by Paul Sharkey, at an anarchist bookfair. The contents were fairly interesting. Presented was an anecdotal, inconsistent history of an anarchist organisation in a small South American country. By all accounts the group had been involved in some intense periods of struggle, both in the labour movement and with guns in hand. There are impressive anecdotes about strikes amongst meat workers, the expropriation of a historic monument (a flag), and a number of tales of torture and loss. Uruguay may be a small nation, but it attracted the attention of US imperialism and fell foul of Operation Condor. I shelved the information in the back of my mind, curious but at the time too focused on other issues to dig deeper into the history.

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