There is very little theory out there about the issue of the NGO sector and the way it affects the social struggle. This is a translated version of a pamphlet written by “Crn Blok” – an anarchist group from Macedonia, where all dissent is being suffocated by a large number of various NGOs and their army of full-time professional “freedom fighters”.
Taken from http://libcom.org/
There is a good reason why we, anarchists, would pay some attention to the Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) sector, principally because the general public considers this “third sector” as a tool for democratisation of society, and even worse, as an alternative to the struggle against centralized authority, oppression, poverty and all the other collective misfortunes of the people. To us, this is yet another of the great deceptions of capitalism that serve to keep the illusion of choice and freedom alive. That thing about the elections – that they’d be illegal if they could really change anything – applies to the NGO sector as well, which, beside being tolerated and even encouraged by every government, is still believed to be a mechanism for struggle against the injustice, an antipode of the government and a platform for participation in the political discourse.
In opposition, we believe it has a very different role: to become a mediator between the government and the people, thus suppressing people’s anger; to convert the potential uncontrollable dissent into a calm, peaceful, legal, controlled, institutionalized and completely harmless discontent; to support capitalism, by creating a good image for the corporations and by propagating the ruling ideology; and finally, to create an illusion of struggling for a change.
No more flowers? Via https://www.facebook.com/eatps
The need to write a pamphlet like this one stems from our own great problem of constantly having to deal with the NGOs and their continuous efforts to institutionalize every single form of dissent we manage to organise in Macedonia, thus condemning all our efforts to a definite failure. We are aware, though, that the impact of the NGOs on the social struggle elsewhere, especially in the western countries, is different than here, and probably of a lesser scale. But although our conclusions in this text are largely based on our experiences here in Macedonia and wider in the Balkans, we believe that the general statements about the role of the NGOs on a global scale apply in every region.
The pamphlet has been issued by the anarchist group “Crn Blok” based in Skopje, Macedonia. (www.crnblok.blogspot.com)