Black Bloc

Violence or nonviolence: where do you draw the line?


On Feb 6, America author and Occupy activist Chris Hedges wrote a piece for titled “The Cancer in Occupy.” In it he criticized the violent actions of Black Bloc operatives within the movement, saying they are the greatest threat to the future of Occupy. The article has generated a heated debate online about non-violence, political strategy and protest in America, and has garnered a response by Anarchist thinker Dr. Zakk Flash.

Read both articles and weigh-in.

The Cancer in Occupy by Chris Hedges

The Black Bloc anarchists, who have been active on the streets in Oakland and other cities, are the cancer of the Occupy movement. The presence of Black Bloc anarchists—so named because they dress in black, obscure their faces, move as a unified mass, seek physical confrontations with police and destroy property—is a gift from heaven to the security and surveillance state. The Occupy encampments in various cities were shut down precisely because they were nonviolent. They were shut down because the state realized the potential of their broad appeal even to those within the systems of power. They were shut down because they articulated a truth about our economic and political system that cut across political and cultural lines. And they were shut down because they were places mothers and fathers with strollers felt safe.


Hedging Our Bets on the Black Bloc by Dr. Zakk Flash

Chris Hedges has written some of the most insightful analysis of the U.S. war machine in recent years. His 2009 book “The Empire of Illusion” was an exploration of how exhibition has eclipsed truth and meaningful connection in American society. His acknowledgment of the ease in which one can buy into such spectacles is a small part of why it was so odd to read his article on Truthdig attacking both anarchists and black bloc tactics entitled “The Cancer in Occupy.”


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102 comments on the article “Black Bloc”

Displaying 41 - 50 of 102

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Black represents death,
Move away from 50 bad seeds,
It will infect the good seeds,
99% shouldn't wear black,
To pluck out cancerous thorns of the movement.

Charlie Supertramp

Stop complaining and continue to fight, spread the word, get other people involved. This endless talk about non-violence is going to lead nowhere. Let people decide how they want to resist. Tolerate the violence against the material world and let people defend themselves. Inform yourself if you do not share this point. Learn something about the history of resistance and the history of exploitation. After some time you will change your mind for sure.


violent or nonviolent not a thing will change because its you that has to change. you may think you are a great human being and are out to change the world for the better, but you are kidding yourself. the state of the world is a product of who you are. if you succeed in an outward revolution you can bet someone will come revolt against it soon afterward. revolution, violent or not violent, has not changed the world, it only shuffles the deck. at least it gives you something you feel is noble to fill in the blanks of your life with.


Oh for fuck sake cut the new age bullshit. Let me guess...Landmark forum?

You have it backwards, the state of the world isn't a product of who I am, but who I am is a product of the world. I was born into a world already made. A world filled with institutions controlling my behaviour from birth And it doesn't matter to those in power who I am, or what my level of bliss is, or how pure my consciousness is, as long as I'm forced to work, consume, obey laws and pay my bills, the system will continue.

The system needs to be destroyed.


i don't know what landmark is or anything, and i have nothing to do with new age bullshit. i don't know why youre talking about bliss and 'pure consciousness,' whatever the fuck that is.

if you dont care to weigh out what i said, then thats it. there's no point in trying to convince someone of something blatant. good luck!


WTF IS VIOLENCE? You should first anwser that question for yourselves.

I am an anarchist. And i think smashing banks or any other abusive property is NOT a violance.

As soon as you do not harm any living creature (as block block does) your activity is non-violent.

Direct-action against property is a Non-violent action as it is.

Oh and you guys say, Occupy movement is inspired by Tahrir Square, Egypt revolution right?

Well check out how Tahrir Square has won!! You Americans always find excuses for every thing. You fall into the passivist myth, and don't wanna wake up from that disease ever!! Or basically, police brutality scares you so much, so you just hope that revolution is posibble without the risk of getting hurt or injured. Well i can understand that, every person has right to be afraid of anything. But please at least don't block the brave people.



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