Considerations on violence in the context of mass mobilization


Mr P 2001-07-31T16:10:53+00:00

Dear Violent,

I understand that we must take action to stop human rights abuses by corporate government officials, and I am strongly opposed to the fascist police tactics used to abuse demonstrators at the g8. But I also think it is important to realize the value of peaceful protest. Peaceful protest brought about civil rights legislation in the United States that has helped many African Americans get better jobs and better housing (anti-discrimination laws). Peaceful protest got the British to leave India. Ghandi kept marching hundreds of thousands against the British rule. He asked them to march against the discriminatory class system called caste and got it removed from law. Ghandi refused to eat until the task was done. His faith in God kept him strong enough to keep marching. And the media paid attention to him and his political message. Of course some in those protests were violent t/o. I’m not saying we have to stamp out all violence, but realize how the police manipulate us, using masked instigators to attack peaceful demonstrators, etc. When we use the tactics of the police and start beating people ourselves, what kind of future state does that predict? Remember how Stalin murdered millions and sent fake telegrams to their relatives saying they were on vacation? He took good ideas, combined them with the gun, and then forgot about the good ideas once he was in charge. Just think about it. No one wants to suffer, but if we have to, it should be for social chan’e, not just to beat up a cop at a demonstration. That doesn’t solve anything. If we want a better world, we have to present a way of living that is better than the current violence soaked corporate exploitation. Peaceful demonstration is one way to present that future model. It worked in Yugoslavia to oust Nazi wannabee Milosevic, and it can wmrk to oust the current fascists in power. What are we working for? A less hierarchical system, more distributed power to the people, ownership to the people, etc. So I’ll try not to dictate how you protest if you will not dismiss peaceful protest either. It’s all in the numbers - if all people have the good ideas, no president, dictator or system can stand against them. Let’s educate.


Fran 2001-07-31T16:40:11+00:00

Just a few quick thoughts. 1) “violent protesters” do constitute a threat to “peaceful protesters”: in Genoa on Saturday 21st Black Bloc activists threw molotov cocktails and stones at the police and then hid in the crowd of peaceful marchers so the latter would get beaten up by the police. That the police acted outrageously is another matter; 2) the “symbolical destruction of the properties of big corporations” is a political act; destroying newsagents' booths, family-run groceries and private citizens' cars is not. I would label it “vandalism”. Thus though so-called violent activists may be politically motivated and have a greatly developed political consciousness, their methods are often brutal and unjust. I also believe they are playing the police’s game, so they can then be blamed for everything (including violence to peaceful protesters).


Daniele 2001-07-31T16:51:02+00:00

I agree with many opinions shown in this ‘manifesto’, but I contest the usefulness of violence for many considerations:

  1. We (western Europe and american people) live in ‘formal democracies’, that implies that most people could not understand violent ways of expressing our opinions. I think that research of consensus is fundamental for our purposes. Remember that even when a very large demonstration like that of Genoa (300000 people)took place, most people remained at home.

  2. Anger is important, and is a political problem for governors. But if we can’t control it, it could be an even heavier problem for us. Remember moreover that even angry people could be afraid of a violence escalation.

  3. Non-violence is an objective, not just a mean, of this movement. Many people in Genova refuse violence not only because police is stronger than us, but actually they don’t want to be more violent than police.

  4. Probably, if anticapitalist people were the majority of european population, we could see a military putsch before elections. In that case, there would be no more formal democracy and anger would have an high legitimacy. In that case, we could choose if subvert power with violence or non-violence. But we must become majority, first.

  5. I think I have similar objectives with anarchists. I would never call a policeman to say: ‘look what that anarchist is doing’. I agree I have never feel threatened by other protesters, but only by police. But I think that black bloc damaged the success of Genova days, and that black bloc enhanced their visibility using non-violent protesters. I think you have to reflect about this.


G 2001-07-31T16:55:29+00:00

QUI' SI FA UNA SERIA ANALISI DEI METODI DEL MOVIMENTO ANTIGLOBALIZZAZIONE ED ANTICAPITALISTA. FORSE MR P NON HAI CAPITO CHE E' UN MOVIMENTO ANTICAPITALISTA, NON PER MIGLIORARE LA SITUAZIONE DEL TERZO MONDO,QUESTO E' SOLO UN’EFFETTO DEL CAPITALISMO E FINCHE' CI SARA' CAPITALISMO CI SARA' SFRUTTAMENTO SIA NEL TERZO MONDO CHE A CASA TUA.IN QUESTO ARTICOLO SI PARLA DI UNA DIFFERENZA FRA VARI TIPI DI VIOLENZA QUELLA GRATUITA E QUELLA PER TENTARE DI AFFERMARE UN’IDEOLOGIA O UN SISTEMA DIVERSO.SECONDO TE LA VIOLENZA CHE CARLO STAVA FACENDO E' UGUALE A QUELLA DI UN RAPINATORE DI VECCHIETTE?SI PUO' PARLARE DI RIVOLUZIONE OPPURE A TE QUESTA PAROLA FA PAURA.LE PROTESTE PACIFICHE FANNO PARTE DEI PIANI DEI GOVERNI E' SOLO GRAZIE AI BLACK BLOCK CHE SONO RIUSCITI A MOSTRARE LA VERA ESSENZA DEL GOVERNO BERLUSCONI NON AD AGNOLETTO,CHE DI GENOVA SE NE' PARLA IN TUTTO IL MONDO E LE PROTESTE ANTI-ITALIANE SI SPANDONO DAPPERTUTTO RAFFORZANDO IL MOVIMENTO ANTI-CAPITALISTA.SARA' GRAZIE AI BLACK BLOCK CHE BERLUSCONI CADRA' NON GRAZIE A TE ED A TUTTI QUELLI COME TE.NON FARE L’ISTERICO APPENA SENTI LA PAROLA VIOLENZA CERCA DI CAPIRE ED APPROFONDIRE, NON ESSERE COSI' STEREOTIPATO E SUPERFICIALE.IL MAHATMA VIVEVA IN UN’ALTRO TEMPO E COMUNQUE GLI INGLESI GIA' AVEVANO DECISO DI ANDARSENE DALL’INDIA PER MOTIVI POLITICO-ECONOMICI.GLI INGLESI NON SONO BERLUSCONI,GLI INGLESI NON SONO FASCISTI SENZA SCRUPOLI ASSETATI DI POTERE E RICCHEZZA COME FINI. I COMPAGNI FRANCESI CON QUESTO ARTICOLO STANNO CERCANDO DI FARCI CRESCERE QUALITATIVAMENTE PERCHE' NOI ITALIANI IL CAPITALISMO VERO NON SAPPIAMO VERAMENTE COSA E',VISTO CHE STIAMO ALMENO 20 ANNI INDIETRO ALLA FRANCIA ED ALL’INGHILTERRA.PER FAVORE NON MOSTRARE A QUESTA GENTE CHE STA VERAMENTE LOTTANDO CONTRO UN MOSTRO (IL CAPITALISMO)CHE PUO' ASSOPIRE LE NOSTRE COSCIENZE E QUELLE DELLE GENERAZIONI FUTURE RECANDO UN DANNO ALL’UMANITA' IMMENSO,LA TUA IGNORANZA E DI QUELLI CHE LA PENSANO,DA BENPENSANTI,COME TE.IO DICO MANY THANKS TO EVERYONE THINKING AND WORKING HONESTLY FOR A WORLD WITHOUT CAPITALISM.THANKS AND RESPECT TO THE COLLECTIF DE REFLEXION SUR L’AIR DES LAMPIONS.