As the [Black] Panthers evidenced signs of making significant headway, organizing first in their home community of Oakland and then nationally, the state perceived something more threatening then yet another series of candlelight vigils. It reacted accordingly, targeting Panthers for physical elimination. When Party cadres responded (as promised) by meeting the violence of repression with armed resistance, the bulk of their “principled” white support evaporated. This horrifying retreat rapidly isolated the Party from any possible mediating or buffering from the full force of state terror and left its members nakedly exposed to “surgical termination” by special police units.

… [I]t became fashionable to observe that the Panthers were “as bad as the cops” in that they resorted to arms…; they had “brought this on themselves” when they “provoked violence” by refusing the state an uncontested right to maintain the lethal business as usual it had visited upon black America since the inception of the Republic…

Such conscientious avoidance of personal sacrifice (i.e., dodging the experience of being on the receiving end of violence, not the inflicting of it) has nothing to do with the lofty ideals and integrity by which American pacifists claim to inform their practice. But it does explain the real nature of such curious phenomena as movement marshal, steadfast refusals to attempt to bring the seat of government to a standstill even when a million people are on hand to accomplish the task, and the consistently convoluted victim-blaming engaged in with regard to domestic groups such as the Black Panther Party. Massive and unremitting violence in the colonies is appalling to right-thinking people but ultimately acceptable when compared to the unthinkable alternative that any degree of real violence might be redirected against “mother country radicals.”

Bin Laden’s message was quite clear: The attacks were carried out in response to blatant and ongoing U.S. violations of the laws of war, together with almost every aspect of international public and humanitarian law. The matter, as he pointed out, is of no mere academic concern: over the past decade well upwards of a half million Iraqi children and at least a million of their adult counterparts have died as the result of pal-pably criminal U.S. actions against their country. United Nations officials have resigned in protest, denouncing what one of them, Assistant Secretary General Denis Halliday, was widely quoted in the press describing as America’s “policy of deliberate genocide” against the people of Iraq…

Reaction among average Americans to revelations of the horror perpetrated in their name has been to all intents and purposes nonexistent. Since it can hardly be argued that the public was “uninformed” about the genocide in Iraq, its lack of response can only be seen as devolving upon a condition of collective ignorance—that is, of having information but ignoring it because it is considered inconsequential — as profound as it must be intolerable to those whose children lie murdered en masse. How, under these conditions, are the victims to claim the attention necessary to impress upon their tormentors the fact that they, too, count for something, that they are of consequence, that in effect they will no longer accept the lot of being slaughtered, conveniently out of sight and mind or with impunity?

…There is but one route out of this particular box. It traces the trajectory of an obligation inherent in the citizens of each country to do whatever is necessary to ensure that their government complies with the requirements of international law. Enunciated as part of the postwar Nuremberg Doctrine with the Germans in mind, the principle applies no less to Americans. Yet it is precisely this civic/human responsibility upon which Americans have defaulted so conspicuously in the aggregate of their willful ignorance concerning the ghastly toll exacted from Iraq.

The question reverts thus to whether, under the conditions at hand, there might have been some “more appropriate means” by which the victims of U.S. aggression might have conveyed the consequences of their agony. Posing it may best be left to the moral cretins who, having done so much to foment the situation in the first place, now revile and seek to exterminate the messengers, demanding “defense” against the truth of their statement. For the rest of us, the method of communication employed was what it was, a mere pinprick when measured against the carnage America so routinely inflicts on others, more akin to a wake-up call than anything else.

In retrospect it will be seen that September 11, 2001, marked the point at which the U.S. was put on notice that business-as-usual would no longer prevail: if Americans wish ever again to be secure from the ravages of terrorism, their top priority must at long last become that of preventing their own government from instigating and participating in it; if, in substance, they desire safety for their own children, they will first have to “stop killing other peoples babies.”

…[T]he death of [John F.] Kennedy was the result of a long line of violent acts, the culmination of hate and suspicion and doubt in this country. You see… this country has allowed white people to kill and brutalize those they don’t like. The assassination of Kennedy is a result of that way of life and thinking. The chickens came home to roost; that’s all there is to it. America — at the death of the President — just reaped what it had been sowing.

Malcolm X

Reiterating what I have said before, the so called terrorism we are fighting, in reality, is the counterviolence created by the terrorism we commit. Sometimes, albeit rare, that counterviolence visits close to home.

anonymous said:

I'm Jewish and I'm quite conflicted about your messages. For one, you sort of lump all Jewish people as Israeli, which is not the case. (Not all Jewish people in ANY country feel the same about this issue) But, you ignore Israeli being harmed by groups like Hamas & legitimate concerns of Israeli people. That being said, I do NOT agree with what is occurring, but I don't see this problem as entirely one-sided as you seem to. This is a cyclical problem. I wish you more addressed it as so.

First, thanks for voicing your opinion. I don’t think I lumped all Jews in together when I said “The inability of Israel’s government and the Jews who support its actions to see the hypocrisy of what they’re doing is deafening” because not ALL Jews support the Israeli government, a point I thought was rather implicit in my phrasing. If it is not, then I’ll clarify now: I am aware that not all Jewish people align with the current actions taken by the government of Israel.

As for Hamas, I thoroughly disagree. The so-called terrorism Israel says it is fighting, in reality, is the counter-violence created by the terrorism it commits. As I have said before, there is a difference in violence and counter-violence. The former is oppressive, the latter is the retaliatory reaction to oppression and is absolutely vital to the liberation of a peoples ruthlessly subjugated. If Israel is really concerned with the alleged “terrorism” of Hamas, its most prudent action would be to immediately cease participating in the terrorizing of Palestinians. This is the nature of cyclical violence, but it is by no means equivalent when one party has the 4th largest military in the world and the backing of United States military might and the other has Soviet era rockets. 

To better understand Palestinian resistance, I offer the words of Jeff Sluka:

”The condemnation of liberation movements for resorting to violence or armed struggle is almost invariably superficial, hypocritical, judgmental, and unfair and tends strongly to represent another example of the generalized phenomenon of “blaming the victim.” The violence of the situation, the per-existing oppression suffered by those who eventually strike back, is conveniently ignored. The violence of the oppressed is a form of defensive counter-violence to the violence of conquest and oppression. In no armed national liberation movement I know of in history has this not been the case.”

— National Liberation Movements in Global Context

After decades of war on Palestinians and the occupation of their land, Israel has threaded through itself a clearly defined and widely accepted, yet often unarticulated, acceptance of violent oppression. It is, within the dissonance they abide, a fully rationalized phenomenon for its government, with full confidence of Israeli Zionists and the United States government, to carry out odious acts of state-sanctioned terrorism against Palestinians. Yet when those murdered, so clearly revealed in the scope of recent events, grow weary enough to fight against occupation, their counter-violence is totally fetishized, their humanity dehumanized. 

I can’t listen to the colonist’s narrative and take it seriously. 

It is not our desire to participate in violence, but it is even less our desire to lose.

If we do not resist, actively, when they come to take what we have won back, then we will surely lose. Do not confuse the tactics that we used when we shouted “peaceful” with fetishizing nonviolence; if the state had given up immediately we would have been overjoyed, but as they sought to abuse us, beat us, kill us, we knew that there was no other option than to fight back. Had we laid down and allowed ourselves to be arrested, tortured, and martyred to “make a point”, we would be no less bloodied, beaten and dead. Be prepared to defend these things you have occupied, that you are building, because, after everything else has been taken from us, these reclaimed spaces are so very precious.

We, as anarchists, are not interested in watered down demonstrations, false declarations of war, or ritualistic spectacles. We are not interested in, and believe there to be no such thing as, common ground for dialogue with the rulers and exploiters of the world. Likewise, we have no interest in political maneuvers and schemes. We are indeed an “ungovernable force”, content with nothing less than a total social revolution with the aim of creating a new society based on the principles of mutual aid, workers’ self-management, decentralization, direct democracy, freedom, and communism.

Severino (Barricada Collective) | Has the Black Bloc tactic reached the end of its usefulness?

Despite my earlier critique of Black Blocs, I want to reiterate that I have and will continue to support a diversity of tactics, and if resistance fighters are coordinating on a scale and with precision that I remain unaware, then I look forward to becoming aware.    

The condemnation of liberation movements for resorting to violence or armed struggle is almost invariably superficial, hypocritical, judgmental, and unfair and tends strongly to represent another example of the generalized phenomenon of “blaming the victim.” The violence of the situation, the per-existing oppression suffered by those who eventually strike back, is conveniently ignored. The violence of the oppressed is a form of defensive counter-violence to the violence of conquest and oppression. In no armed national liberation movement I know of in history has this not been the case.
The desire for a nonviolent and cooperative world is the healthiest of all psychological manifestations. This is the overarching principle of liberation and revolution. Undoubtedly, it seems the highest order of contradiction that, in order to achieve nonviolence, we must first break with it in overcoming its root causes. Therein lies our only hope.

On the whole we have a severely underdeveloped conceptual understanding of violence. Failure to differentiate between oppressive violence, passive and active force, and resistance is common. They all get lumped together and treated as equal. This is a great disservice to the oppressed and our oppressors know it. They purposefully conflate oppressive violence with resistance in an effort (quite effectively) to decouple the oppressed’s natural right to self defense from the conditions which incubate militancy.

In part this decoupling is possible because we cannot always see the slow moving violence of the oppressor that’s right in front of us. It has been so thoroughly normalized that it takes on the camouflage of everyday reality.

Take homelessness as an example:

Aside from the fact that we can literally see it everyday, somebody, somewhere advocated for, funded, and made laws whose direct consequences proliferate poverty under the conditions of capitalism. This is perfectly legal, and since legality is the measure by which we have come to derive the moral value of what rules govern our lives, few see the inhumanity of institutionalized poverty and homelessness BECAUSE it is legal. It must be made obvious then that mass murder does not always require bullets — many do it efficiently with pens.

Certainly this isn’t new. From the constitution, with its “peculiar” dealing with slavery onward, injustices in America have been institutionalized.

We have to understand that this is where the violence is initiated. Reactions to it, forcibly defending ourselves from it by taking homes or food for our survival, no matter legality, by any means necessary, is the reinstatement OF morality in a system that is bankrupt of it. We cannot conveniently start the conversation at the point of self defense or resistance and call that the initiation of violence. Such is playing the oppressor’s game. It gives them the power to control the narrative and define our fight.

FAI/IRF threatens Coca Cola and Nestle with product sabotage

Militant anarchist group launches “Green Nemesis” operation with hydrochloric acid-laced soft drinks

The FAI/IRF militant group has sent an envelope containing a USB drive and a 500ml Coca Cola bottle. Included on the USB stick is a six-page declaration of their “Green Nemesis” operation and a video.

In their declaration the group attacks Coca Cola and Nestle and claims that four days after sending the envelop, they would put bottles of Coca Cola and Nestea tampered with 100ml of hydrochloric acid back on store shelves. The militant group declares that their intention is not to harm innocent people, but to force the multinational companies of withdrawing their products from the shelves.

In the video included on the USB drive, the group shows how they managed tampered with a Coca Cola Light bottle without causing any damage to it seal, to demonstrate that the group is capable of carrying out the threat.

The full declaration is available here.

"This Nonviolent Stuff’ll Get You Killed: How Guns Made the Civil Rights Movement Possible" by Charles E. Cobb Jr. | Amazon

Visiting Martin Luther King Jr. at the peak of the Montgomery, Alabama bus boycott, journalist William Worthy almost sat on a loaded pistol. “Just for selfdefense,” King assured him. It was not the only weapon King kept for such a purpose; one of his advisors remembered the reverend’s Montgomery, Alabama home as “an arsenal.”

Like King, many ostensibly “nonviolent” civil rights activists embraced their constitutional right to selfprotection—yet this crucial dimension of the Afro-American freedom struggle has been long ignored by history. In This Nonviolent Stuff’ll Get You Killed, civil rights scholar Charles E. Cobb Jr. describes the vital role that armed self-defense played in the survival and liberation of black communities in America during the Southern Freedom Movement of the 1960s. In the Deep South, blacks often safeguarded themselves and their loved ones from white supremacist violence by bearing—and, when necessary, using—firearms. In much the same way, Cobb shows, nonviolent civil rights workers received critical support from black gun owners in the regions where they worked.

Whether patrolling their neighborhoods, garrisoning their homes, or firing back at attackers, these courageous men and women and the weapons they carried were crucial to the movement’s success. Giving voice to the World War II veterans, rural activists, volunteer security guards, and self-defense groups who took up arms to defend their lives and liberties, This Nonviolent Stuff’ll Get You Killed lays bare the paradoxical relationship between the nonviolent civil rights struggle and the Second Amendment. Drawing on his firsthand experiences in the civil rights movement and interviews with fellow participants, Cobb provides a controversial examination of the crucial place of firearms in the fight for American freedom.

[T]he systematic anti-Hamas propaganda engineered by some Palestinian trends does not specifically target Hamas as an organization. It in fact targets the concept of resistance itself, as a practice, an idea, a consciousness. The alternative on offer is not resistance through different tactics. It is its antithesis, an alliance with colonialism.
A fine sight they are too, the believers in non-violence, saying that they are neither executioners nor victims. Very well then; if you’re not victims when the government which you’ve voted for, when the army in which your younger brothers are serving without hesitation or remorse have undertaken race murder, you are, without a shadow of doubt, executioners. And if you choose to be victims and to risk being put in prison for a day or two, you are simply choosing to pull your irons out of the fire. But you will not be able to pull them out; they’ll have to stay there till the end. Try to understand this at any rate: if violence began this very evening and if exploitation and oppression had never existed on the earth, perhaps the slogans of non-violence might end the quarrel. But if the whole regime, even your non-violent ideals, are conditioned by a thousand-year-old oppression, your passivity serves only to place you in the ranks of the oppressors.

—Jean-Paul Sartre, preface to Frantz Fanon’s The Wretched of the Earth

More of why I am not a pacifist. Violence has it’s place and “perhaps, when your back is to the wall, you will let loose at last that new violence which is raised up in you by old, oft-repeated crimes” and vindicate the atrocities against you—and to you will come your rebirth in the remnants of total abolition.

We need all tools to dismantle this system, violent or otherwise.