The issue of violence (and non-violence) has a context and can refer to ‘war’ and/or to activist groups who propse ‘non-violence’. The distinction is crucial and to use moral terms can backfire. It is no moral to preach non-violence to Ukrainians trying to defend themselves against the Russian invasion…
Non-violent activists end up as usual as hypocrites because here they can’t be consistent and propose non-violence in the fact the agreesion by Putin.
A romanticized belief in violence renders people irrational to the point of hurting ourselves, over and over again.
Source: Opinion | Debunking the Popular—But Dangerous—Assumption That Violence Keeps Us Safe | George Lakey
Chris Hedges fancies himself some kind of saintly Christian following non-violence but the formula doesn’t add up. I hold no brief for the Weathermen who are not representative of much of anything and confused terrorism with revolutionary strategies. The onset of non-violent tactics was a significant moment, and with MLK was an effective tactic in the civil rights movement. But the fact must be faced that the left has become barren of results and has accomplished almost nothing since 1969 or before. In that time the planet has proceeded toward climate destruction without any real response from the left whose non-violent tactics will end by doing nothing as millions are killed. It is not possible to stop the capitalist insanity with Gandhian tactics. Gandhi is a much misunderstood figure and played the guru without understanding Indian spiritual history. Non-violence is finally a spiritual meditation visible in Jain yogis whose gesture is based on fasting to death lest they violently murder insects. It was a path to enlightenment via a path to death. It had no political implications and was a path by those who had renounced the world. The Gita so revered by Gandhi explicitly endorses the duty of violence to Arjuna as a caste warrior (Gandhi was ambivalent or confused by his own holy texts). The Gita has to be the worse book to cite for a proponent of non-violence.
It is essential to consider history here: using methods of non-violence, american democracy would never have arisen, and slavery would still exist. All the basic achievements of modern freedom were far from being non-violent. That does not mean that free lance violence as terrorism is some kind of leftist tactic. Methods of revolutionary action require discipline and the American Revolution was a war with generals and sane leaders.
The current is a dangerous field of nincompoops who mainly write article for Commons Dreams and little else. Billions of people are about to perish as the idiot left diddles over Gandhian sanctity.
Chris Hedges and Mark Rudd talk about political violence and the Weather Underground in a new episode of “On Contact.”
Source: Chris Hedges and Mark Rudd Discuss Self Destructive Forces on the Left – scheerpost.com
One of the confusions in the New Age sphere is the legacy of Gandhis one of the worst distortions of activist ideology. Gandhi was one of the most confused pseudo-gurus who was really a European exile educated in England and then returning to India with a pastiche of spiritual rubbish that he could hardly have read. The Gita as the Hindu Bible is a farce, although it has hints of ancient teachings on some points. But Gandhi made this the centerpiece of his non-violent tactics, apparently unaware that the Gita specifically enjoins violence, and along with that the archaic legacy of caste. Because of MLK’s classic adoption of Gandhian non-violence the left has take up his tactics, without seeing that they were effective in the Civil Rights struggle against racism, but that the larger issue of slavery, e.g. the Civil War, was no non-violent movement. The tactics of non-violence have no real historical record or legacy. They are an hodgepodge of Gandhians bizarre guru imitation and misinterpretation. Nonviolence appears in the Jain legacy, but it is not a political tactic. It is a form of extreme mediation leading to death given that the yogi cannot realize non-violence without destroying insect life. That classic legacy had no real place in the activism of the modern period where are the achievement of freedom are the result of struggle, sometimes violent.
Gandhian tactics are crypto-violent and in the end lead to far more violence than considered action on the proper scale, e.g. the American Revolution. The current left has lost a precious generation to these tactics which have accomplished almost nothing. In fact they embolden dangerous elites to the sense they will encounter no opposition to their outrages. With gandhian methods, there would be no modern democracy, freedom, rights, or equality. And it is doubtful Gandhi did anything much to gain Indian independence. A real movement would have done the job in the twenties and could have thrown out the British with a revolutionary movement of the American type.
Source: The New Age mirage versus the antiquity of Indic yogas. – 1848+: The End(s) of History
We have a lot of posts on Gandhi who is a contradictory and confusing figure.
Keep in mind that Gandhi was very confused and embraced the Gita as his Bible.
But could he read it? The Gita is about Krishna telling Arjun that he had a
duty to fight. Gandhi was influenced by the Jain tradition of non-violence,
world war needs a world revolution. The left has been kidnapped by sentimental gandhians peddling non-violence, which is going to itself provoke massive violence of unchecked political insanity. Millions to billions. These sentimental gandhians are far more violent than any revolutionary.
Source: Opinion | With Earth on Edge, Climate Crisis Must Be Treated Like Outbreak of a World War | C.J. Polychroniou
This interesting discussion points to the desperation emerging in the course of the modern world system. We should consider the evidence here, mindful however that this seems to be apparently propaganda from the State Department, the focal point of one of the most violent sectors of the American government. One might simply disregard such pulp. However, the tactics of non-violence need such study to attempt to fathom the way through the coming calamity. The successes of non-violent action need such study and the potential of non-violent action needs to be considered by the proponents of traditional tactics. However, it is hard to see how the case is made. The case of the 1905 revolution is pointed, but to the long view of the two Russian revolutions of the 20th century show the first to have failed and the second to have finished the task, however the outcome.
A problem here is the focus on non-violent action against tyrannies in isolation where now the world confronts the colossal failures of the whole political system as such. The basic set for examples is misleading: the status of the US system has gone critical yet these writers see no evidence a challenge is needed to the American degenerated democracy. In fact, the whole range of issues now begins to change focus from the cute examples of non-violent success to the question of a system like the US with a hidden fascist element, a deep state (or several), an intelligence agency/agencies that have staged violent coups for decades to a century and have developed social control mechanisms that are beginning to tempt to the now realizable takeover of democracy in its final stages.
The issues here are capitalist domination, never challenged in this book whose credibility is marginal, and whose malevolent action poses the revolutionary question directly.
The potential of non-violent action seems to be beggared by this new reality and we have to consider how the Jan 6 insurrection/farce has conveniently given the control sectors the opportunity to make protest of any kind illegal, and a consolidation of suppression that will be used against the left.
The era of climate disaster is not properly analyzed by such analyses from a State Department desk, and the question of postcapitalism and climate disaster ask what this viewpoint can’t address: how will the rising left and its socialist components confront the cancerated crypto-fascist monstrosity formerly called a democracy controlled from Wall Street, the embedded intelligence agencies and their hidden drug mafias, etc…
The coming catastrophe deserves an opening shot from the groups plying non-violent action, to be sure, but the crux of revolutionary violence, which has stood behind all the primordial democratic revolutions of the early modern, returns to haunt the non-violent potential
In fact, the left at this point can’t even stage a non-violent protest march and the legal challenge to non-violent public action is almost complete. This system is close to making non-violent public protest illegal and is destined to clear the streets of nuisance Gandhians.
There hardly seems to be a path for revolutionary action, in a system run by the CIA, but non-violence is hardly an option either. However, we can’t be sure of anything in this situation, and the evidence of both paths is important. This Leviathan status of the so-called system has itself seeded the last option: a terrorist underground to go down fighting in the end times of capitalism?
Capitalism is drenched from head to foot in the blood of the working class. This is one reason why socialists believe that if we are to rid ourselves of this murderous system then we must mobilise the full weight of our class against all our oppressors: mass revolutionary struggle is the order of the day. More
Source: A Mistaken Take on Revolutionary Strategy, the Case of 1905 – CounterPunch.org
The case of gandhi as a saint of non-violence is botched study: gandhi needs some close study to see his limitations and confusions and, most of all, his muddled attachment to the ‘bhagavad gita’ in his promotion of non-violence: the text explicitly counsels arjuna to fight, violently. Continue reading ” Gandhi, non-violence, and the real message to Arjuna: sometimes you have to fight…”