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The Blanket - A Journal of Protest & Dissent

Resistance, by ANY means.

David A' Gardner, Scottish Palestinian MediaWatch • 5 September 2004

"Violence is never justified!"

Say it enough times and you start to believe it. The problem is, as with most mantras, if you repeat anything often enough you will believe it. Take "A land without people for a people without land" as an example, or "Saddam Hussein has weapons of mass destruction". So, let us examine this abhorrence of violence (and rightly so) and why this statement is, when you get right down to it, absolute nonsense.

France. Well, its as good a place to start as any. Nazi Germany and the Vichy government ran the show back in the early 40's, brutally at times (read accounts of the SS Das Reich or Klaus Barbie, the Butcher of Lyon, as a good example) and displayed a blatant disregard for the populace at large. As the war ran towards the D-Day landings, masses of much needed German reinforcements were called upon to advance from central & southern France. Now, enter the wise mantra "Violence is never justified" and WWII suddenly takes a turn for the worse. Should those extra troops have made it to the beaches in Normandy, the allied landings may not have been so successful and in fact may have failed altogether. So, why didn't the troops make it? The French resistance, using guerrilla warfare and sabotage, managed to hold back the German reinforcements long enough for the allies to land. Assassinations, ambushes, blowing up vital railways lines & bridges, all in a days work for the Resistance. Was this violence justified?

How about the July bomb plotters back in Germany? Was their attempted assassination of Hitler an unnecessary act of mindless violence?

Let us leave the continental hills and vineyards of France for more tropical climes. One of the biggest ironies of the mentally blind peace-nik is their never ending worship of that poster-boy image which can be seen on their t-shirts banners & badges. We've all seen it and we all know him. Che Guevara. Imagine if Che and Castro had been advocates of our mantra in question.

What would have become of Nelson Mandela should he have been party to our mantra? The ANC was set up as what the general populace would today deem as a terrorist group. Wasn't their work justified?

Were the various groups who made up the PLO simply acting out a sadistic love of violence or were they indeed the only route left open to the displaced Palestinians after watching their new occupiers carry out such massacres as Deir Yassin?

How about the Basquelands ETA group. How else could they have shown their resistance to the Franco dictatorship? Franco wasn't known for his amicable audiences with aggrieved parties, as was the esteemed Mrs. Thatcher when pressed on the Irish question.

Was Guy Fawkes simply a thug? Imagine if chief Sitting Bull had advocated a non-violent resistance to the invading Whiteman? One suspects the Indian would have been completely extinct within the week.

The Italians strung Mussolini from a lamppost. Terrible really when they could have used non-violent means to bring him to account and sentenced him to imprisonment complete with hot meals and 2 hours recreational time per day. Off course the Russians were too hasty on their advance to the Bunker in Berlin. Robert the Bruce needed to simply invite Edward out for a tankard of ale and a mass of spilled blood could have been avoided.

Are we to confine the likes of Queen Boedica, Wolfe Tone, or Joan of Arc to the lower ends of humanity who were hell-bent on violence?

For those of you who are more inclined towards a religious persuasion, Jesus himself is quoted in the Gospels as saying "I come not to bring peace, but a sword!" (Mt. 10:34) and later on in Luke "He that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one." (Lk. 22:36) Not exactly advocating a non-violent solution to the Roman occupation was he?

"Violence is never justified". Even after a brief examination such as those listed above, any right thinking person can see this statement for what it really is. Nonsense! Utopia is unfortunately as much a part of the real world as Martian invasions or an Ian Paisley who would be willing to see another point of view.

The peace-niks however did get it partly right. Politics, protest and other non-violent means should be the first port of call. But sometimes these methods don't work. Palestine today being the classic example.

Should you be an advocate of non-violent means, please do so. But when these methods fail, take your banners elsewhere and let the people decide what means they will use to further their cause. Just because YOU have failed, maybe others won't.





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The Blanket - A Journal of Protest & Dissent



All censorships exist to prevent any one from challenging current conceptions and existing institutions. All progress is initiated by challenging current conceptions, and executed by supplanting existing institutions. Consequently the first condition of progress is the removal of censorships.
- George Bernard Shaw

Index: Current Articles

6 September 2004

Other Articles From This Issue:

Not In Our Name
Fred A Wilcox

Child Murderers
Anthony McIntyre

32 CSM Urges Russian Government: Recognize Chechen Independence
Sean Burns

Who is Really to Blame?
George Young

Resistance, by ANY Means.
David A' Gardner

Reality Check
Patrick Lismore

Fairy Cleansing
Seaghán Ó Murchú

The Culture of Lies and Deceit
Liam O Comain

Labour Steps Up Pressure on IRA to Disband
Paul Mallon

30 August 2004

The Knackers Yard
Anthony McIntyre

Spin Cycle
Mick Hall

Reality Check
Patrick Lismore

32 CSM Pays Tribute to Memory of Republican Socialist Volunteers
Marian Price

Let Them Stay
Davy Carlin

"Fine Words"



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