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imperialism & war | media criticism

Craig Rosebraugh on the Anti-War struggle

As the U.S. led military campaign gets fully under way in the very near future, the question remains... how far is the anti-war movement in the United States willing to go to stop the U.S. government and its unceasing atrocities? How far are you willing to go, what are you willing to do to stop the massive bloodshed once again caused by the U.S. government?
As the Commander in Chief of the United States gears up at 8:00 pm (EST) to tell the nation and the world that war is inevitable, that the window of opportunity for Saddam to disarm and destroy his "weapons of mass destruction" has expired, serious questions need to be posed to the privileged anti-war movement in the United States. With massive U.S. led bombing of Iraq perhaps just hours away, the question remains, how far is the anti-war movement in the United States willing to go to stop the U.S. government and its unceasing atrocities?

So far the peace or anti-war movement in this country has mirrored the same strategies and tactics of past historical anti-war causes. By far the most important example to reference is that of the Vietnam anti-war movement in the United States during the 1960s and 1970s. Well over a million people participated in this effort, engaging in a variety of tactics and strategies in an attempt to stop the war, or even to prevent its further escalation. From public education to picketing, boycotts to lobbying, marches to massive civil disobedience, to even outright suicide in the numerous cases of individuals lighting themselves on fire in protest, the Movement was extremely diverse. There was even a decent contingency of property destruction that occurred, no doubt condemned by the mainstream corporate peace organizations.

With all this activity, with the incredible amount of participation, one would assume this would have been more than enough to stop the war, to pressure the federal government to pull out of Southeast Asia. Furthermore, when soldiers such as Ron Kovic, returned from the war angry and disillusioned and formed organizations such as the Vietnam Veterans Against the War, even more intense pressure was placed on the U.S. government. But it was not enough. None of the strategies and tactics applied during the Vietnam anti-war movement in the United States were enough, either individually or combined, to stop the U.S. government's military horrors. At the height of the Movement, Nixon's response was not to stop the war but to initiate his policy of Vietnamization. This ingenious plan allowed the U.S. government to weaken the anti-war movement while continuing on with the war for another five years. When the peace accords were finally signed in Paris in 1973, they were more a result of the incredible success of the Viet Cong than any realistic effectiveness of the anti-war cause.

Each of the anti-war movements that have surfaced in the United States since then have attempted to mirror, to an absolutist extent, the strategies and tactics that failed during the Vietnam anti-war struggle. In fact these same strategies and tactics have been used in nearly all U.S. anti-war movements throughout history and the fact remains, never in U.S. history has any anti-war or peace movement actually prevented or ceased a U.S. military operation or war. And yet continuously, anti-war movements in the United States fall into the same mold of ineffective activism that stands absolutely no chance of threatening or challenging the power structure of the U.S. government.

In the current day, protests in select locations such as Washington, DC, New York, San Francisco, Los Angles, Portland, and more are considered successful due only to the numbers of people in attendance. The common argument is stated in defense of these activities that the message is getting out into the media and thus people in this country and around the world are learning that not everyone supports Bush's war. Yet, from a strategical standpoint there is absolutely no realistic foundation to the belief that this form of public education can and will have any effect on the government's decision to use military force in Iraq. Again, glancing back to the Vietnam period when the protests were even larger, when more people gathered and the tactics were even broader than those utilized today, Nixon refused to listen to the public and continued on with the war.

During the past few weeks cries have emerged from the "progressive" sectors of U.S. society concerning Bush's statement that the anti-war movement is a mere focus group and would not effect his ultimate decision. This should provide at least some indication that the large parties - which some might call protests or rallies - are not capable of generating the needed pressure which could actually force the government to stop. If it hasn't ever occurred throughout U.S. history and, arguably, the U.S. government is more powerful now than ever, there is no precedent on which to base this faulty behavior and activity. Yet, the large mainstream peace groups continue to give caring U.S. people false hope, that if they get involved in the movement there is actually a chance they can help stop the war.

If we are going to become serious about stopping this war, and even the U.S. led atrocities of tomorrow, we must be realistic about our strategies and tactics and actually begin to utilize those methodologies which can and will challenge the power structure of the country. Yes, I am speaking of direct action, but not the generalized version spouted freely today and used to describe primarily conscience serving endeavors. An action is direct if it actually gets in the way, prevents, or stops an injustice from occurring. Unfortunately, the government sanctioned peace parades do not fit into this description. Even though public education is an inherent necessity of any movement, the time for public education by relying upon corporate media's interpretation of your events has long since passed - if it was ever valuable.

The only possibility of stopping this current military action is to engage in strategies and tactics which severely disrupt the war machine, the U.S. economy, and the overall functioning of U.S. society particularly how it relates to consumerism and the economy. Marches, picketing, rallies, parties, benefits, civil disobedience and even property destruction are pointless, and perhaps even counterproductive, unless they serve to severely disrupt the functioning of the political system and its economy. An atmosphere of severe unrest, if manufactured properly, will force the U.S. government to place military resources in the streets of the United States, will threaten the economy (the chief motive behind this military excursion) of the United States, and ultimately create a political atmosphere unfavorable for Bush to continue on with the war.

So how is an atmosphere of severe unrest and disruption generated? First and foremost, it must begin with our ability to look beyond the business as usual strategies and tactics that have failed miserably in the past. It must begin with our allegiance to come to terms with the realization that any and all tactics and strategies must be considered at least available for use. Next we must be willing to decipher exactly how the power of the political structure can be effectively challenged. Once this matter has been examined there is only one question remaining, will each of us become involved and use whatever tactics and strategies are necessary, or will we refuse and continue to engage solely in conduct which serves little other purpose than making people feel better about themselves.

Here are some suggestions for the necessary creation of an atmosphere of unrest and disruption in the United States.

1) Attack the financial centers of the country. Using covert or black block techniques, depending on the situation, physically shut down financial centers which regulate and assist the functioning of U.S. economy. This can be done in a variety of ways from massive property destruction, to online sabotage, to physical occupation of buildings. However the latter I would shy away from, especially the open civil disobedience type of activities which purposely involve arrests. This movement needs all the assistance it can get and absolutely NO good will come from going to jail. Allowing yourself to be purposely arrested demonstrates that an individual has at least some faith in the U.S. legal system. This is completely foolish. One primary objective is to engage in serious unrest and disruption and NOT to get caught. Not getting caught means you are able to continue the struggle the next day.

2) Large scale urban rioting. With massive unrest and even state of emergencies declared in major cities across the country, the U.S. government will be forced to send U.S. troops into the domestic arena thereby taking resources and political focus away from the war. Unstable conditions in much of the country also serve as a political embarrassment for the Administration and could assist in forcing them to stop the war to deal with domestic concerns. Rioting should be focused on governmental agencies and corporations - especially those that are profiting from the war or destruction of life.

3) Attack the media centers of the country. It is the corporate media who has and continues to influence and control the minds of the mass body of people in the United States. These new media outlets cannot be utilized by the movement as they are owned by the very corporations one should be opposing. Using any means necessary, shut down the national networks of NBC, ABC, CBS, CNN, etc. Not just occupations but actually engage in strategies and tactics which knock the networks off the air.

4) Spread the battle to the individuals responsible for the war and destruction of life - the very heads of government and U.S. corporations. No longer should these people be able to hide behind their occupations, living their lives in peace while they simultaneously slaughter countless people. Hit them in their personal lives, visit their homes, and make them feel personally responsible for committing massive atrocities.

5) Make it known publicly that this movement DOES NOT support U.S. troops as long as they are serving an unjust and horrifying political regime. Create an atmosphere lacking of support to assist U.S. troops at home and abroad in losing their morale and will to fight. If you are supporting the troops you are supporting this war and the very U.S. government that is the primary terrorist regime in the international arena.

6) Actively target U.S. military establishments within the United States. Again, following the above stated goal of NOT getting caught, use any means necessary to slow down the functioning of the murdering body.

7) When engaging in the above six activities, strike hard and fast and retreat in anonymity. Select another location, strike again hard and fast and quickly retreat in anonymity. Engage only in actions where you will be victorious. Do not be concerned with alienating the mainstream sectors of the movement - that mainstream has NEVER stopped a U.S. military activity or war. Do not get caught. DO NOT GET CAUGHT. Do not get sent to jail. Stay alert, keep active, and keep fighting. Remember, an action is only good (especially at this juncture in U.S. society) if it will serve to severely disrupt the political system of the country, its economy, and the corporate interests that drive this society.


These suggestions are not radical. They are merely recommendations for those that desire to actually have a chance at stopping this current military siege. As the peace or anti-war corporate organizations vocally oppose this message and its enclosed suggestions, continue to ask what realistic chance do their strategies and tactics have to actually stop this war? What historical precedent do their business as usual politics and policies have? As no peace or anti-war movement has ever stopped U.S. governmental military policies or activities using the state sanctioned and societal approved methods, what right do they have to give the caring public false hope?

Well over 500,000 Iraqi children have died since the Gulf War as a result of U.S. bombing and sanctions - not to mention thousands of innocent men and women. With the planned massive bombing campaign planned by the U.S. military, the death toll of the innocent will severely increase. And for what? The U.S. rhetorical line of "liberating the Iraqi people from dictator Saddam" is as much bullshit as our historical line of helping to spread freedom and democracy around the world. Surely Saddam is guilty of massive atrocities, but so are many other world leaders. Sure Saddam may have had or continue to have weapons of mass destruction, but so do many evil leaders of nations around the world. Just why is it we have not targeted Israel and Sharon in the same manner as Saddam? Why is it leaders of the United States have not targeted the U.S. government for its weapons of mass destruction and incredible history of terrorist and murderous atrocities? Similar to Bush Senior's Gulf War, this is another war for U.S. corporations and for the protection and, more importantly, expansion of the U.S. economy. With the incredible oil reserves in the region and the potential for U.S. corporations to have a hand in building and ruling a future Iraq nation, the motives are quite obvious. Of course, it wouldn't be just if the U.S. did not claim that it was taking action against a horrible dictator for humanitarian purposes.

As the U.S. led military campaign gets fully under way in the very near future, the question remains... how far is the anti-war movement in the United States willing to go to stop the U.S. government and its unceasing atrocities? How far are you willing to go, what are you willing to do to stop the massive bloodshed once again caused by the U.S. government?
Make him step down 17.Mar.2003 17:31

idiot

your president is gone, please make do all you can to make him step down before things get worse.
thank you.

about time 17.Mar.2003 17:53

ramonax

It's about time someone is speaking "reality".
I would like to add that after doing any direct actions to stop this incredulous war, we must start making a plan of how things should work - including all voices - starting in our own communities. If we know where we are heading, it won't be as scary to fight for it.

build the movement 17.Mar.2003 19:47

not in agreement

i agree that nothing the anti-war movement does that panders to the idea of power reforming will have any effect. our hope and our power lies in the possiblity of people rising up and claiming the power--in shifting that power structure away from the state.

but i strongly disagree that a few (and really, y'all, it would only be a few--if the tame-ass peace marches get about 1/10 a percent of the population to participate, how many folks do you think are going to smash and dash citibank?) folks are going to do lasting damage to the ability of this country to function.

and even if they could, that's not building a movement. our work is in helping to create a working-class, anti-racist, and HUGE grass roots revolution. and to do that, we have to meet folks where they are, and offer them some reasonable next step in their own paths of resistance.

none of this is to dis' property destruction. it's just not something you can organize around. personally, i'm more interested in actions that folks can claim responsibility for and potentially involve the other 99.9999 percent of the population in.

to that end, there is a cd training this coming weekend. if folks are interested, check the post.

how to get from here to there? 17.Mar.2003 20:40

anon

The point that "not in agreement" raises is well taken. Of course more vigorous action is needed if people are serious about stopping US militarism, as Craig explains. And yet, how are we to expect enough people to reach the point of taking the risks and sacrifices that may be required? We aren't at that point yet. Does Craig advocate the notion of "exemplary actions"? Is the idea that if enough people take such actions now, even if they aren't sufficient in themselves, that it will inspire sufficient others to ignite the spark that allows the sort of larger and more consistent resistance he describes?

Isn't it more likely, as has been the case so often in the past, that the iron fist of the security forces will quickly move to crush any such embryonic movement before it could, by itself, inspire such resistance, as happened with the sadly delusional Weather Underground? The latter consisted of some of the brightest and most courageous, dedicated activists for social justice of their generation, yet they deluded themselves into thinking that the time was ripe for revolution, and that they, acting as a vanguard, would light the spark. Instead they were crushed by the state and fell soon into disarray and oblivion. How does Craig propose a different outcome this time?

What about a revolution 17.Mar.2003 21:15

Jason jasonkfranz@hotmail.com

Your letter taken merely from the point of stopping mass murder and occupation of Iraq by our current rulers, is correct. Yet, with the plan to drop 700-800 bombs within a two day period, "simulating a nuclear attack"..."there won't be a safe place in Baghdad", there likely won't be enough time for such a campaign to be effective.

However, if your goal is a revolution in the US, bring something along the lines of democracy to this country, the strategy you profess will not get us there. Ultimately all branches of state power must be taken off line by the people, and then remade to fit a democratic model. Once again assuming democracy of some form is the goal. Yet, this is best done by building a mass movement and then training it in ways to shut down our current monopolistic corporate socialism and replace it with true democratic institutions.

I realize the turn of history is slow, and for those who are ahead of their time, it is best for them to make the hard choices and work for what is needed now. We have made progress and the end will never be in sight until it has arrived. The first protesters of the Vietnam War found that their rallies were broken up by the citizenry. A march was impossible; in fact even the safe haven of a church for an anti-war rally was almost turned into a mass slaughter, if it weren't for the lackadaisical but never-the-less efforts of the police to protect the protesters. Today we have scene on one day 10 million people protest a war before it has happened. Will it stop our rulers from their occupation and murder, no, and very few of us ever thought it would. Yet, with the plans to grasp global empire, we have in my opinion a five to ten year window to organize the people to action. To take the next step those who worked against the Vietnam War admit they failed to take, organize the "peace movement" to shut down the gears of capitalism.

We have the numbers to do this and we can do this. It means going from house to house and organizing those who are willing, to the goals of a boycott, a general strike and throwing any wrenches we can into the gears of the system to bring it to a halt. This will be hard work and uncomfortable work and it cannot be done within ones' own comfortable peer group. To make these steps first is to work to create a revolution, not too, is to enforce the fear that the ruling classes use to keep the masses in line. We have gotten to the point where a revolution is possible. We have also gotten to the point where without popular support; the rulers can come and simply drag the resistance away in the night, never to be scene again.

Direct action of which you describe is needed and is needed now. Yet, if this direct action uses the more mainstream elements of the peace movement as political cover and undermines it, both efforts will fail. For those who are ahead of their time I say, let us work hard and activate those who sit in the neon glow of apathy. This work appears to be neither glorious nor particularly rebellious, yet this is the step that must now be taken. For I believe the time is coming for the world to glimpse true justice, possibly in our lifetimes. Without communication and understanding of the goals of all people working for peace and justice we will fail.

Attack. 17.Mar.2003 23:25

.

Craig says "attack" are you going to follow the order?

March all you want -- just pay your taxes! 17.Mar.2003 23:58

mel mel@igc.org

Commitment is the key. How much time and effort are you devoting to change the system?
Are you watching more TV than engaging in direct action?
"Hanging out" at the mall more than participating in organizations/groups (provocative or lethargic)?
It's the time, and secondarily money that is the crucial factor. Corporations get their jobs done as they have people working full-time for their cause.

What's one to do?
Everything and Anything.
Direct the effort towards the goal. Do you run a service or produce "goods" in your job? Offer it to an organization that you think is working well.
If marching in the street is all you think you can do, then do it. (I don't think it will do much but it's likely to be more effective than shopping, TV and beer.)
Or organize a band and fundraiser with the goal of stopping war.

Not to forget finance.
Former Secretary of State in the Reagan Administration General Alexander Haig nailed it (perhaps not to everybody) when he blurted out that protest marchers are not a problem as long as they pay their taxes! He knew what drives the system.
Cut the money off from its source: that will take the smirk off the government and corporations.
It's not easy! The federal tax fund war and the military.
One national group addresses tax resistance as their main function. National War Tax Resistance Coordinating Committee. They are small and haven't created a revolution (just as long as you don't get them started!):
 http://www.nwtrcc.org/
Even addressing the finance issue is not a sure thing. Tax resistance would need to have hundreds participating statewide to be successful. But it doesn't require even 10% of the people.
The government won't miss a few million dollars of redirected tax money, but the nonprofits and vital organizations that receive it will be a large factor in the change.

shut up 18.Mar.2003 00:17

actually anon

note to all secretly authoritarian self-appointed spokesmen: shut up allready. You people just make the rest of us look stupid and pump energy into the most boring, one dimensional parts of our movement.

How far are you willing to go, dude? Are you willing to give up the American archetype of the self-righteous, hot-air-blowing white boy that brow beats the rest of us with appocolyptic rhetoric and calls for bloodshed? (i think you missed a 5:00 appointment) Or maybe you're the version we can trust...why don't you tell your readers about the "post-revolution" reeducation camps you've got planned for us all? I wouldn't let you near my brain with a ten foot pole.

want inspiration? look around you for folks with some creativity, if you don't see any, start looking, fast.

For those wanting a regime change: 18.Mar.2003 14:43

A former OSU Prof and 2002/03 demonstrator

Amid all the calls in this corner for and counter calls against disruptive action over what is about to happen in Iraq, few seem to have noticed what has to be scaring White House political operatives. Something that is likely to cause far more concern than civil disobedience: Most of the folks demonstrating in these past months—especially in January—were those over 30 who DO vote and, unlike those in the Vietnam/Gulf days, finally took to the streets to send our kids to attack and occupy Iraq so that ARAMCO and the oil barons and sheikhs finally have total control over the Middle Eastern oil reserves. Sneer at such masses and their ominous fury at Cheney and Bush if you wish. But that demographic is a miracle and milestone in American political history. How many of those who've marched would have come out if they sensed they would have been peppersprayed (like those on the Morrison bridge) or clubbed or ridden down by horses as happened at the Hilton last summer? Or if they were now directed to condone a Weatherman-like backlash against Bush? Summer (Christian) soldiers and old fogies? Don't kid yourself. It took a lot of upset with Bush to get them into the Park Blocks and, Saturday, Waterfront Park—and to march. Few in my sections at any of the last three marches wasted energy in chanting or singing perhaps because they know the only energy to be expended is showing that dissent and to vote out Bush. And they will if we stand and wait for his political collapse.
You can be sure the political operatives of Bush/Cheney didn't write off this demographic as "focus groups," especially in Portland Saturday when their photographers and field folk certainly reported back to the White House that 90% or more of the signs carried were homemade and many hostile not just to Bush, but to handlers like Cheney. Say what you will about LBJ, the consummate politician, his astute sidekick on the hustings ( Lady Bird) always made the point that the homemade signs reflected voters' real views.
Start civil disobedience and you'll drive those anti-Bush/Cheney voters away from the main objective: to vote out an administration determined to return us to the 1880s and Commodore Vanderbilt's sneering slogan: "Let the public be damned." Far worse, you'll play into their hands as an excuse to continue justifying the overthrow of the Constitution and stripping us of the freedoms it guarantees. They're praying and hoping for such hotheaded tactics because they know such acts will turn most of those voters into holding their noses, but casting their vote for Bush and his backers. Don't play into their hands!! They're dying to label dissenters as terrorists.
There's a better way to boot out the Commodore Vanderbilts, though "boring" or square or slow to the restless. Those demonstrator signs about changing the regime at home are where it begins.
Those thousands of voters unfooled by jingoism and lies is an ominous portent for election strategists, especially if you multiply each demonstrator by the 500 too timid to voice their dissent in the streets. In the newspaper business the ratio is one letter-to-the-editor equals 100 too timid or busy to write. Think of the ominous message sent to Bush/ Cheney, et al. for 2004. Think, too, that's come about within just two years of their illegal seizure of the presidency. We need to do absolutely nothing because they're going to destroy themselves in the next six months with the voters without any help from us. Can't fool all of the American people all of the time
Look what they've done thus far to alienate even those who voted FOR them, not even counting $2+ at the gas pumps (which should outrage ordinary folk and outweigh any Bush tax bribe sent us in brown envelopes.
Consider a few things that will take them down without our lifting a finger:
The economy is going to hell, as is plain from the unemployment and business bankruptcy statistics. Think what they'll be by November 2004. Think of the other Enrons unmasked by then also. Moreover, the way the Bush administration is overseeing the nation's treasury may soon have them issuing Confederate shinplasters—even before they factor in the billion-dollar bribes to allies like Angola or the blood and treasure we're about to put out to seize Iraq's oil wells and bring American-style democracy and freedoms to that bombed-out country.
Education is also going to hell—except for those able to afford tuition to private schools. Consider also that the Bush/Cheney administration will be held responsible by voters not just for denying their kids a full nine months of schooling, but, far more dangerous to those who vote, turning thousands of teens out on the streets and malls with nothing to do?
Then, there's Bush's inattention to the nation's health. Most voters are becoming anxious and angry because family members increasingly are denied medical care. On top of this, Bush's team is advocating an end to Medicare/ Medicaid and a return to the 1880s when families took care of ailing members. Add to this the voters who must still pay thousands out of pocket for prescription drugs either at purchase or via increasing insurance coverage. No voter affected believes Bush's oratory about help and, thanks to experience and AARP and the internet, realize he's out kill funding for Medicare and shove participants to the private sector. You think they won't vote by the millions against him in 2004?
Consider also that Bush has alienated and terrified any voters who live chiefly on Social Security or their families who pray they'll never have to take them in. The stock market crash hopefully has educated ordinary working folk about Bush's push for them to opt out of SS and put their retirement savings into the greedy hands of stock brokers.
Aside from the fact that AE's discourage nickel-and-dimers or squawks about churning accounts to make their buying/selling commissions, they don't want nickel-and-dime accounts. Have we considered the thousands of disgruntled voters furious because their retirement savings have been wiped out on Bush's watch. Or their recognition of his pallid efforts to police both stock-selling corporations and their accountants.
Investors take a dim view of wipeouts ordinarily, but Bush doing nothing will affect voters in that catastrophic situation.
Another truly scary scenario to voters is today's opening of jail cells and decreasing law-inforcement staffs because of budgetary shortfalls in counties and states. True, inmates being released are said to be non-violent, but that means ultimately that the release of thousands to prey again on voters can be hung around Bush's neck.
Another source of oncoming voter dissatisfaction that will drive them to the polls is the treatment of veterans and their families at the hands of the overwhelmed VA. And now comes yet another generation shuffling to mental or PT wards to increase fury by their families. Tragically, they'll get the same short shrift given those from other wars—and the ensuing bitterness. At least the spector of truncheons and horses putting down the WWI bonus march gave WWII vets the GI bill. Bush doesn't have such cash, however, and will have to betray those he's sent to Iraq and other theaters..
Sitting back and waiting for a regime to collapse under its own weight IS excruciating for those who want instant action But if action is wanted, let's hit them with those ominous cardboard signs of those who most certainly will vote against Bush. For such huge demonstrations in this country to arise even BEFORE this poor man's war, has to have unnerved Bush's 2004 campaign staff. The last thing we want to do is to turn off those voters with Weatherman tactics. Disrupt people and destroy property in the climate of terror Ashcroft and his myrmidons have created, and we'll lose them to Cheney Inc.
Instead, let's pour energy into galvanizing these voters and those who were with us in spirit on the marches, but too frightened or too busy to put their feet behind their convictions. Unglamorous and "square" and slow as getting voters furious enough to toss out the Caligulas and Mussolinis (and their Charlie McCarthy front guy), that is what needs to be done in the next few months.
Hit this little Texas cabel where they really live and tremble: the 2004 presidential election.
The first and most important job of all is to find a viable and strong Democrat like Martin Sheen with fire in the belly and enough electoral votes to beat Bush (the cabel will drop Cheney because his Machiavellian hand has been exposed).
We all know now who the cowards are in Congress and in the nation's statehouses so none of them are eligible candidates. It must be a winnable, vote-getting candidate unafraid to point out what four years of robber-barons and their Goebbels-like spinmasters have wrought.
Groan if you must, but the realpolitik of this situation is always that you can't toss out the rascals with nobody or with a third-party candidate, no money, Weatherman tactics, boycotting the American political system—or sneering at those who showed with their signs and feet and time in these marches that they'll vote Bush out in 2004. Let Bush's stoneheaded band do themselves in, in the voters' eyes.
In the meantime, let's get a candidate or at least a stalking horse for that candidate. And kick off a campaign long before the primaries start up. Let's not get mad and sulk. Let's get even and keep them from destroying this beautiful country.

Futile 18.Mar.2003 15:25

chris

As others have noted, calls for ultra-militant tactics are futile and counter-productive when a tiny minority will be carrying them out. Craig calls for "large scale urban rioting". Please. The population of the Greater Toronto Area, where I live, is in the area of 7-8 million people. I think the biggest anti-war demo we had was 80,000 people - and that's a march around, don't break stuff, liberal kind of march.

So: A whopping 1% of the population will go to a march - again, just a march - but suddenly there's going to be enough militant people to shut the city down - in the face of probable opposition from the other 99%? Not bloody likely.

The problem is not that tactics aren't militant enough. The problem is that radical ideas aren't widespread enough - hell, they aren't widespread enough. As someone much smarter than me once said, you can't blow up a social relationship.

chris

Stop a War, Start a Revolution. Not the Same. 19.Mar.2003 15:29

Recognize

These suggestions make sense to stop a war and that's what he's talking about.
Revolution is another story.

Frankly, No one who's against war should give a flying fuck about what percentage of the population is for or against them to the extent that they sit back and watch the slaughter proceed. Public Opinion does NOT stop war. Thus what is suggested is engaging the US corporate and military machine in a way that disrupts, taxes, and exhausts it's material resources. You really think that's bad or illogical?

Revolution requires a lot more in which we should not turn to an anonymous post on Indymedia to learn about. Read history, revolutionary speeches, etc...

Craig is a revolutionary. But this statement isn't about how to engage in a full blown revolution. You'll have to get with him later for that. Anyway, revolution does take the masses,the working class, the dispossessed and marginalized and probably a good deal of the "middle" class. We got to organize from those bases, and work to create the structures, and implement them BEFORE a revolutionary period in order break the cycle of post-revoltuionary authoritarianism! It's called dual power, check it out.

In the meantime, unprecedented environmental and mortal devastation is set to take place! We who recognize that fact and commit to doing what we can or whatever it takes to make it stop, might do good to think about this original post.

There ARE NO LEADERS! So those looking to learn should do so, but neither Craig nor myself nor any other individual contends to own any of this! Since it's on the computer, consider this property of Bill Gates! Just find out for yourselves and Think! THEN ACT!!

AGAINST WAR! AGAINST BUSH! START TO STOP IT NOW!

Get a life. 18.Apr.2003 06:16

Dave

Instead of hiding, why don't you "activists" come out and become politically active to effect change. Oh yeah, you've tried that and the rest of us told you by our votes, get lost. Now since you cry babies can't get your way, you resort to domestic terrorism. Why can't you just accept the fact that the majority of the people don't want what you want and live with it.
There's no excuse for the havoc you people create for law abiding citizens. Our country is based on popular vote. If you want change, get the votes. Otherwise, shut-up and stop infringing on other people's rights.