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The Power of Nonviolence in History

civil disobedience Nazi Germany the power of nonviolence Denmark Norway

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#21
PhoenixRu

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During the Second World War, and before the attack on Pearl Harbour, Britain was in desperate need of American supplies and arms to keep the war effort afloat. Part of the issue here was that Americans did not wish to get involved at all in European affairs as this was still her era of neutrality. In order to continue justifying aid to the war effort Roosevelt had to continue drawing concessions from the British in return for assistance. One of these concessions was the dismantling of the preferential trade network Britain had with her colonies (we all know America loves free trade). Churchill agreed, this was really the moment when the British empire ended.

 

Yes, i've read about this in some history book. This case was used as example of geopolitical wisdom: young imperialist power (USA) strangled old imperialist power (British Empire) without any war and even staying the "ally" of the victim. So, British Empire began to crumble soon after its formal victory in WW2.


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"And the Russian land, let God keep it! Under heavens, there is no other land like this. And although Russian nobles are not righteous neither kind, let God arrange the Russian land and give us enough justice" - Afanasy Nikitin, medieval traveler of XV century.


#22
caltrek

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Is There a Nonviolent Path to a Livable Future? A Conversation With Chris Moore-Backman

 

http://www.truth-out...s-moore-backman

 

Extract:

 

We live in a time of extraordinary social ferment and upheaval, with deepening divisions, dislocation and extreme poverty. Add to this the full-blown ecological emergency of climate change and the continued existence of our current civilization and perhaps even our species is on the line. Chris Moore-Backman's recently released first book, The Gandhian Iceberg: A Nonviolence Manifesto for the Age of the Great Turning, wrestles with the critical question that now looms before us: Is there a nonviolent path to a livable future? Moore-Backman -- who has worked with the Fellowship of Reconciliation and Christian Peacemaker Teams, and who has served on international peace teams in Colombia and Palestine --looks at this complexity from his unique perspective as a fully committed writer, nonviolence scholar and frontlines practitioner.

 

Against the backdrop of a painfully divisive US election, midstream in this era of the Movement for Black Lives and Standing Rock, and with a post-inauguration Women's March on Washington just around the bend, I interviewed Moore-Backman about his book.

 

Miki Kashtan: Could you talk a bit about the metaphor of an iceberg, and how and why you've used it to frame your work?

 

Chris Moore-Backman: I'm always on the lookout for creative ways to capture the full significance of nonviolence and to challenge prevailing assumptions about it. I recently began using the visual of an iceberg -- a particularly potent image given the climate emergency -- to represent the three core features of Gandhi's theory and practice which, taken together, point to something far deeper and stronger than what is usually associated with nonviolence.

 

The Gandhian Iceberg is a twist on the conventional depiction of an iceberg, in that the proverbial "tip of the iceberg" in this model refers only to the small, outermost edge of the ice visible above water. The biggest, weightiest part of the iceberg -- the enormous mass under water -- is what Gandhi called self-purification, which I refer to as self-transformation. This is the foundational expression of nonviolence, where we align our individual practice with our deepest principles. ….Lastly, we head out to the very edge of the ice above water, the tip of the iceberg, which stands for satyagraha, or nonviolent resistance: the practice of love-in-action in situations of conflict. 

2017_0118gandhi.jpg

 

A statue of Mahatma Gandhi in São Paulo, Brazil.

(Photo: Paulisson Miura)


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#23
caltrek

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15056419_1241686459238911_67699713553690


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The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#24
Yuli Ban

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They do know how to handle non-violence. They've been dealing with non-violence for decades.

Anyone who doesn't understand this is literally a hippie.

 

We use your reluctance to strike against you. We direct your words. We mold who you trust. We contain you into special zones where you'll allowed to be as petulant as you wish. 

 

 

Nonviolence is predicated on the belief that your opponent will also be nonviolent, that your neighbor will be moved by your own suffering to speak up and also be nonviolent. All I have to do is make it look like you're the one who's in the wrong— make your neighbor cheer me striking you in the face while you give me flowers. And because you won't be able to strike me back, you'll forever be paralyzed while I bulldoze your home and chain your children. All the while, you'll be chanting slogans in your specially designated free-speech zone.


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#25
Mike the average

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Non-violence is winning, non-violence will keep winning,  

 

that is why we have 7 billion people, up 6 billion from over a hundred years ago, that is why we are all talking to each right now from every part of the globe and why gays arent being bashed in the street.

 

The problem is pro-violent people cant actually fucking count.  WW2 killed 3% of the global population, obviously most people on the planet werent shooting at anyone.  By the end of this century, we will all be vegetarian.


'Force always attracts men of low morality' - Einstein
'Great spirits always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds' - Einstein

#26
Yuli Ban

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Non-violence is winning, non-violence will keep winning

Non-violence is winning...

greatestidea.jpg

...from within the confines of free-speech zones.


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#27
caltrek

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They do know how to handle non-violence. They've been dealing with non-violence for decades.

Anyone who doesn't understand this is literally a hippie.

 

We use your reluctance to strike against you. We direct your words. We mold who you trust. We contain you into special zones where you'll allowed to be as petulant as you wish. 

 

 

Nonviolence is predicated on the belief that your opponent will also be nonviolent, that your neighbor will be moved by your own suffering to speak up and also be nonviolent. All I have to do is make it look like you're the one who's in the wrong— make your neighbor cheer me striking you in the face while you give me flowers. And because you won't be able to strike me back, you'll forever be paralyzed while I bulldoze your home and chain your children. All the while, you'll be chanting slogans in your specially designated free-speech zone.

 

I think you do not understand the concept of nonviolent civil disobedience.  It involves far more than simply chanting slogans in "specially designated free-speech zones." It involves non-cooperation with evil. Such non-cooperation involves tactics that go far beyond merely making speeches, although persuasive speeches are certainly a part of its arsenal.

 

How do you think the entrenched interests "make it look like your the one who is wrong"?  

 

They do so by playing on fears that "you" wish to utilize force to ram your ideology down their throats.  Use of non-violent techniques of non-cooperation allows you to gain the high moral ground and undermine their ability to discredit you. Advocating violence also introduces a needless schism on the left and risks alienating potential allies. I know you are upset about the outcome of this last election cycle. So am I. I would advise that you need to calm down, take a few steps back, and rethink your emotional outburst of a reaction.

 

An embrace of answers that are as bad as the problems that such answers seek to solve is no answer.  


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#28
caltrek

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Sorry if I was a bit rough on you there Yuli.  I guess you caught me in a grumpy mood.


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#29
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Don’t Feed the Trolls — How to Combat the Alt-right

 

https://wagingnonvio...mbat-alt-right/

 

 

Introduction:

 

When white supremacists gather, I get that our initial impulse is to do everything we can to simply shut them down. But it’s very possible that attempts to do so are giving the alt-right exactly what they want. To feel like they are being victimized, to feel like their way of life is being threatened, to gain media attention to legitimize their movement, to demonize the left and to gain more and more recruits for their cause.

 

…We need to remind ourselves that we are the majority, and they are the ones resisting the changes our society is going through. While we need to meet the urgency of this moment, we can also allow ourselves time to breath and not feel like the world is collapsing around us.

 

Maintain the moral high ground

 

This is ultimately a battle for the morals of this country. It is about right and wrong.

Most people like to think of themselves as moral people, and while white supremacy runs deeper than the average person realizes, most people would not identify as Nazis or white supremacists.

 

In a battle for morals, imagery and messaging is everything. If we lose the PR battle, even if we are ultimately on the right side of justice, we may give the alt-right ammunition they desperately need. And if we don’t provide them with that ammunition, their movement will struggle to gain momentum.

 

3500.jpg?w=300&q=55&auto=format&usm=12&f

 In Portland, about 10 Patriot Prayer supporters paraded inside a barricaded area protected by dozens of riot police.

Photograph: Elijah Nouvelage/Reuters


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#30
caltrek

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The Proven Superiority Of Nonviolent Resistance

 

https://www.forbes.c...e/#59af02cd68f0

 

Introduction:

 

(Forbes)  Erica Chenoweth and Maria J. Stephan have written an excellent articlein Foreign Affairs that is well worth reading. In it, they undertake a systematic study of resistance movements to authoritarian governments in the 20th century in an attempt to determine which methods are more successful in both succeeding and in transitioning to peaceful democracies afterwards.

 

To study these methods, the authors examined 323 different movements from 1900 to 2006, involving both violent and nonviolent movements that involved more than 1,000 participants for the purpose of "self-determination, the removal of an incumbent leader, or the expulsion of a foreign military occupation."

Their conclusion was that nonviolent movements were twice as likely to succeed as violent movements, and that nonviolent movements often significantly increased the chances of a more peaceful and democratic government emerging in the aftermath.

 

 

"Contrary to conventional wisdom, no social, economic, or political structures have systematically prevented nonviolent campaigns from emerging or succeeding," the authors write. "From strikes and protests to sit-ins and boycotts, civil resistance remains the best strategy for social and political change in the face of oppression. Movements that opt for violence often unleash terrible destruction and bloodshed, in both the short and the long term, usually without realizing the goals they set out to achieve."

 

This seems counterintuitive, especially here in the United States, where advocates of violence are often regarded as "realists" or "pragmatic."  But as the authors note, there's good reason for the success of nonviolent movements. That's because they're "more likely than armed struggle to attract a larger and more diverse base of participants and impose unsustainable costs on a regime."

1280px-Quit_India_Movement-e140617505553


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#31
caltrek

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Nonviolent Resistance in the Arab Spring

 

http://www.ocnus.net...ab-Spring.shtml

 

Extract:

 

 

(Ocnus.Net) In recent decades, we have seen an increase in ...people power... movements that use civil resistance to challenge authoritarian regimes. From the 1986 ousting of Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos to the recent uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt, these movements have demonstrated that citizens are able to overturn long-standing dictatorships without violence. While these movements struggle for regime change, they are distinct from the classic… revolutions… of the past, both in terms of their character and strategy.

…how do nonviolent movements succeed when they rise up against highly repressive rulers? Why are some movements victorious while others are defeated? In this article, I analyze the dynamics of nonviolent resistance in three Arab Spring cases: Tunisia, Egypt, and Syria. While several factors shaped these movements... abilities to usher in regime change, I focus specifically on the role of the armed forces. I argue that the military's... decision to remain loyal to the regime or to side with civil resisters heavily shaped the outcomes of these Arab Spring uprisings.


….Tunisia

The Tunisian uprising emerged because citizens suffered from an ailing economy, a corrupt regime, and lack of political freedoms. Yet there had been little resistance to President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali during his 23-year-rule. What transformed popular discontent into resistance was an atrocity that occurred on December 17, 2010. On this date, a young vegetable vendor had his cart confiscated by police since he did not have a license to operate. When he was unable to recover the cart or appeal to officials, he set himself on fire. A few days later, a couple others committed suicide in response to the bleak economic situation. Protests erupted and escalated, expanding to several cities. By early January 2011, people from various socioeconomic backgrounds joined the protests. Thousands of lawyers and teachers went on strike. In response to the unrest, the regime imposed a curfew but few protesters complied with it. Despite widespread strikes and demonstrations, Ben Ali did not resign. However, when Army Chief Rachid Ammar refused orders to shoot civilians, Ben Ali realized that he had no means of enforcing his rule and thus he fled to Saudia Arabia on January 14 

The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#32
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Aung San Suu Kyi - MYANMAR POLITICIAN AND OPPOSITION LEADER

 

https://www.britanni...ung-San-Suu-Kyi

 

Abstract:

 

(Encyclopedia Brtianica) In July 1989 the military government of the newly named Union of Myanmar (since 2011, Republic of the Union of Myanmar) placed Suu Kyi under house arrest in Yangon (Rangoon) and held her incommunicado. The military offered to free her if she agreed to leave Myanmar, but she refused to do so until the country was returned to civilian government and political prisoners were freed. 

 

…The junta once again placed Suu Kyi under house arrest from September 2000 to May 2002, ostensibly for having violated restrictions by attempting to travel outside Yangon.

 

…Suu Kyi maintained a high international profile—including a visit to China in mid-2015—as she worked toward greater political liberalization in Myanmar. Although some progress was achieved, no changes were made to the constitutional provision banning a candidate from running for the presidency whose spouse or children are foreign nationals. Nonetheless, Suu Kyi and the NLD campaigned vigorously for what turned out to be the country’s first openly contested parliamentary election. The polling, held in early November 2015, produced a major victory for the NLD, which was able to secure large-enough majorities of seats in both legislative chambers to allow the party to form the next national government. As Suu Kyi was not able to stand for the presidency, the NLD selected her close confidant, Htin Kyaw, as the party’s candidate, though Suu Kyi clearly indicated her intent to rule the country by proxy. On March 15, 2016, legislative members elected Htin Kyaw to serve as the country’s new president He was inaugurated on March 30.

 

Suu Kyi initially held four ministerial posts in the new government—minister of energy, minister of education, foreign minister, and minister in the president’s office—but within a week had given up the first two positions. She was then named state counselor, a position newly created by the legislature and signed into law by Htin Kyaw; the post was similar to that of prime minister and potentially more powerful than the president. The creation of the state counselor role for Suu Kyi rankled the military, whose legislative members denounced the bill that provided for the new position as being unconstitutional and refused to take part in the vote on the bill.


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#33
PhoenixRu

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Btw, just came to mind: the current Catalan crisis is a pure, almost the laboratory experiment to check the real "power of nonviolence in history". This is indeed the unarmed protesters, not supported (so far, as it seems) by any foreign great power and not going to use violence to achieve their goals. And the other side is not some third world tyranical regime but respectable European democracy (if even imperfect in some regards).

 

How will it end? IMHO the anwser is obvious.


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"And the Russian land, let God keep it! Under heavens, there is no other land like this. And although Russian nobles are not righteous neither kind, let God arrange the Russian land and give us enough justice" - Afanasy Nikitin, medieval traveler of XV century.


#34
caltrek

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I am still in a research phase on Catalan.

 

I feel like I must share that this debate is for me carrying an increasingly comical tone. It is beginning to sound something like:

 

Me: On my planet we have automobiles that travel at 65 miles per hour.

 

Somebody else:  Impossible.  Everybody knows that the law of physics dictates that vehicles with organisms such as yourself inside them cannot travel at such speed.  It is clearly a product of your imagination.  Perhaps the evil capitalist elite has brainwashed you into thinking that such a thing is possible.  You are clearly too naive to be believed.

 

I am so happy to be living in California.  I am begining to feel genuinely sorry for those who live in what must be a much harsher environment.

 

I know that sounds terribly condescending of me.  Still, perhaps it will help you to understand how others are coming across to me.

 

Also, it is not like I am suggesting that California is a utopia.  After all, if it were perfect there would be know need of nonviolent work toward establishing justice.


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#35
PhoenixRu

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I feel like I must share that this debate is for me carrying an increasingly comical tone.

 

Yes, frankly i feel the same.

 

It is beginning to sound something like:

 

Me: On my planet we have automobiles that travel at 65 miles per hour.

 

Somebody else:  Impossible.  Everybody knows that the law of physics dictates that vehicles with organisms such as yourself inside them cannot travel at such speed.  It is clearly a product of your imagination.  Perhaps the evil capitalist elite has brainwashed you into thinking that such a thing is possible.  You are clearly too naive to be believed.

 

To me, the whole thing sounds this way:

 

Someone: "I live on a wonderful island where food is abundant and skies are always bright... i don't believe in evil at all, after all i've never experienced it myself."

 

Me: "But man, this will not last forever. There are powerful tropical storms, and the sea is full of pirates. What if one of their ships will drop its anchor right here? What will you do? Perhaps you must prepa..."

 

Someone: "Nonsense! And why are you so grim and angry? Don't think about this... let's hug, brother!"

 

I am so happy to be living in California.  I am begining to feel genuinely sorry for those who live in what must be a much harsher environment.

 

That's not that simple. There are some benefits in living in "harsher environments". This is only IMHO, but... if there is some "fatal level" of troubles, after wich your society is already unable to recover, this level for Russians and Americans must be very different. After all, too much "pirates" already tried to disembark on our shores. And they're all is still here, in a big pit beyond the forest...


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"And the Russian land, let God keep it! Under heavens, there is no other land like this. And although Russian nobles are not righteous neither kind, let God arrange the Russian land and give us enough justice" - Afanasy Nikitin, medieval traveler of XV century.


#36
caltrek

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At this point, I think we are both presenting a parody of the other person's position, so I suppose I can't really complain about hyperbolic distortions on your part. Still, for the sake of clarity, I feel compelled to question the idea of "not experiencing evil."  As I pointed out earlier, if I lived in a utopia, then there would be no need for the nonviolent struggle that I am describing.

 

Also, no quite sure where the "don't think about this" is coming from.  That I reach different conclusions is hardly a directive to "not think."  

 

This is only IMHO, but... if there is some "fatal level" of troubles, after wich your society is already unable to recover, this level for Russians and Americans must be very different. After all, too much "pirates" already tried to disembark on our shores. And they're all is still here, in a big pit beyond the forest...

 

I am not sure what you are getting at here. 


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#37
PhoenixRu

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I am not sure what you are getting at here. 

 

Just an observation. Russian people survived and emerge victorious from hardships that modern Americans can not even imagine. This gives me a hope that in case of equal disaster in the future (say, limited nuclear exchange) Russia, as state and society, will almost definitely survive and America will definitely not.

 

This is only my opinion, based on nothing but intuition, so you can ignore this.


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"And the Russian land, let God keep it! Under heavens, there is no other land like this. And although Russian nobles are not righteous neither kind, let God arrange the Russian land and give us enough justice" - Afanasy Nikitin, medieval traveler of XV century.


#38
caltrek

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I wouldn't go so far as to say that the scenario you outline is impossible.  Something along the lines you suggest might develop from the Korean situation.  It is not automatic that American society would collapse in the event of an exchange with North Korea, but it would place a severe strain on the system.  Fall out from the destruction of North Korea would also place a strain on the entire world system, including Russia.

 

The concept of waging a limited war is extremely problematic.  As I have written elsewhere, such wars by their very nature would be extremely difficult to control.  They imply a level of agreement between potential adversaries that simply does not exist.  If such a level did exist, then a limited war would not be needed.  Other means of accomplishing the desired ends would be found.  A war that failed to stay limited would result in an unimaginable amount of destruction. 


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls






Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: civil disobedience, Nazi Germany, the power of nonviolence, Denmark, Norway

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