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<nettime> The War Against Preterrorism: The ‘Tarnac Nine’ and The Coming Insurrection


by Alberto Toscano*

I. The Case
On 11 November 2008, twenty French youths are arrested simultaneously in
Paris, Rouen, and in the small village of Tarnac (located in the
district of Corrèze, in Franc's relatively impoverished Massif Central
region). The Tarnac operation involves helicopters, one hundred and
fifty balaclava-clad anti-terrorist policemen and studiously prearranged
media coverage. The youths are accused of having participated in a
number of sabotage attacks against the high-speed TGV train routes,
involving the obstruction of the train's power cables with
horseshoe-shaped iron bars, causing material damage and a series of
delays affecting some 160 trains. Eleven of the suspects are promptly
freed. Those who remain in custody are soon termed the 'Tarnac Nin',
after the village where a number of them had purchased a small
farmhouse, reorganised the local grocery store as a cooperative, and
taken up a number of civic activities from the running of a film club to
the delivery of food to the elderly. In their parents' words, 'they
planted carrots without bosses or leaders. They think that life,
intelligence and decisions are more joyous when they are collectiv'.[1]

The rest is at:

* A slightly abridged version of this text will appear in Radical
Philosophy 154. I thank the editorial collective of RP for permission to
republish the text here.

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