The section provides information on strategic nonviolence and links to organizations that provide training in nonviolent resistance, effective strategy and creative actions. For more information on a common vision and strategy that unites people into an effective national movement please see our page, about PopularResistance.org
Featured Video: The video to the right is an hour-long presentation on grand strategy given to the Fellowship Of Reconciliation in Olympia, WA. It is a reflection on how organizers can grow social movements to be impactful enough that they can effect social change, and it highlights principles and a theoretical framework that can be used to evaluate the effectiveness of actions and tactics.
Organizations and Websites
Recent Articles in Strategy!
By Kevin Zeese and Margaret Flowers, www.truth-out.org
June 13th, 2013
The fact is, United States and world histories show that an organized and mobilized populace is what has always caused transformational change. This history is not taught in our education system or emphasized in the heroes we idolize in our culture, but it is so significant that it cannot be hidden from view. The country could not operate if the people refused to participate in its corrupt systems. The ultimate power is with us, if we let go of fear and embrace it. Now that there is a history of more than 100 years of modern resistance movements, there is data to show what works and what doesn’t. As a result, we can develop a vision, a strategic plan and tactics that make success more likely than ever before.
By Michael Albert for ROAR Magazine – I was radicalized in the 1960s. I happened to be attending MIT at the time, which is primarily a scientific-technical school. I was there to study physics. The war in Vietnam was raging. The Civil Rights movement was in full gear and concern about these trumped what I was doing at university. Had it not been for these movements, I would have focused on my “career.” Instead, I became politically involved with stopping the war and pursuing campus changes, though my activism quickly branched-out to other topics, and eventually to media projects and answering the question, “What do we want?”
By Staff of Tele Sur – Spain’s anti-austerity party Podemos and older left-wing party Izquierda Unida, or United Left, announced Monday that they have reached a preliminary agreement to run on a joint platform before a general election on June 26. In a statement read to the press, party representatives said the alliance aimed to “recover the country” in favor of the “working classes and social majorities.”
By Salar Mohandesi for ROAR Magazine – One of the most significant political stories of the year is the meteoric rise of a little-known, 74-year-old, self-proclaimed “democratic socialist” senator from the small state of Vermont. Although he may win many of the remaining contests, it seems extremely unlikely that Bernie Sanders will clinch the Democratic nomination. Nevertheless, his bid for the presidency has dramatically, perhaps irreversibly, changed the political landscape in this country.
By Ralph Nader for The Nader Page – In 1961, President Kennedy’s Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), Newton Minow described television as “a vast wasteland.” Perhaps nothing demonstrates that better these days than the rise of Donald J. Trump as a presidential candidate; now the presumptive Republican nominee. Trump’s boisterous carnival barker persona has dominated the airwaves for the entirety of the 2016 election cycle, eclipsing what precious little time remained for the serious issues that affect millions of Americans.
By Paolo Gerbaudo for ROAR Magazine – I think that the Labor Law is what made people join this movement. But in a way it was just the initial pretext for the mobilization to begin. Most people are coming here because they think there is a problem of democracy in France. There are two reasons for this feeling. First, the el-Khormi bill shows that there is no difference between the parties of the left and the right. It has been made by the Socialist Party but it is essentially a right-wing law.
Note: Breaking Through Power: four days of civic mobilization at Constitution Hall in Washington, D.C. on May 23, 24, 25 and 26, 2016. The theme of this citizen mobilization will be elaborating ways to break through power to secure long-overdue democratic solutions made possible by a new muscular civic nexus between local communities and Washington, D.C. Breaking Through Conference graphicOn these four days, speakers will present innovative ideas and strategies designed to take existing civic groups to higher levels of effectiveness. The participants will be asked to support the creation of several new organizations. One such group will work to open up the commercial media, which use the public airwaves free of charge, to serious content. Another will facilitate action by retired military, national security and diplomatic officials who want to deter unconstitutional and unlawful plunges into wars that lead to calamitous and costly blowbacks.
By Kate Aronoff for Waging Nonviolence – For two weeks this May, organizers across 12 countries will participate in Break Free 2016, an open-source invitation to encourage “more action to keep fossil fuels in the ground and an acceleration in the just transition to 100 percent renewable energy.” Many of the month’s events — pulled together by 350.org and a slew of groups around the world — are set to take place within ongoing campaigns to shut down energy infrastructure, targeting “some of the most iconic and dangerous fossil fuel projects all over the world” with civil disobedience.
By Anshantia Oso for Truthout – On April 18 the US Supreme Court heard oral arguments in United States v. Texas, the case challenging President Obama’s 2014 executive actions on immigration. The president’s measures are designed to protect nearly 4.5 million undocumented immigrants from deportation and allow them to apply for work permits under the expanded Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and the new Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA).
By Stefanie Ritoper for UCLA News Room – I have been teaching nonviolence and social movements with Rev. Lawson for the past 15 years. He has had a huge impact in articulating a historic framework in the use of nonviolence in the United States. He’s been a leading scholar who has enlightened many about nonviolence– not only college students, but also those in social justice movements nationwide. Major civil rights books have been written about him throughout the decades, and he was extremely influential in counseling Dr. King and key civil rights leaders on the necessity and power of nonviolence.
By Erica Chenoweth for Vox – Violence has gotten a lot of attention in the 2016 presidential race — from the kicking and punching of protestors at Trump’s rallies to incitements of violence against Muslim refugees and Mexican immigrants to promises by various candidates to use overwhelming military force to destroy the Islamic State. But nonviolent resistance — that is, when unarmed civilians use a coordinated set of actions, such as protests, strikes, and noncooperation to directly confront opponents without harming or threatening to harm them
By Kevin Zeese and Margaret Flowers for Popular Resistance. Below is an announcement of a partnership between Popular Resistance and Resistance Against Plutocracy which created the ‘Bernie or Bust Campaign.’ This is not an electoral alliance but a movement building alliance. We recognize the incredible work the Bernie Sanders campaign has done to build national consensus around the issue of the unfair Wall Street dominated economy and the corruption of the US electoral system by big money interests. We also recognize that despite the national consensus on these issues an independent mass movement is essential for creating the trasnsformational change need. We hope other supporters of Sanders ‘political revolution’ recognize that a revolution does not coincide with an election but is much bigger than an election. The people need to build a movement that is able to impact whoever is elected president, as well as congress, state legislatures and local governments. We need to unite Sanders supporters with the popular movement.
By Jim Hightower for AlterNet – In my travels and conversations this year, I’ve been encouraged that grass-roots people of all progressive stripes (populist, labor, liberal, environmental, women, civil libertarian, et al.) are well aware of the slipperiness of “victory” and want Washington to get it right this time. So over and over, Question No. 1 that I encounter is some variation of this: What should we do!?! How do we make Washington govern for all the people? What specific things can my group or I do now?