Neutral Perspective: Violent and Non-Violent Protest is Effective?



Violent Versus Nonviolent Revolutions: Which Way Wins? Posted Apr 07, 2014

Why boycotts outperform bombs


Nonviolent Conflicts in 2014 You May Have Missed Because They Were Not Violent By Erica Chenoweth December 31, 2014 19 Comments 793 Views
“..Despite all of the bad news you might remember from 2014, I’d like to highlight a few other key stories that you might have missed because of our very human tendency to focus on things that literally blow up.

Now, I am the first to say that there is nothing innately “good” about nonviolent movements, but the historical record clearly suggests that people who wage nonviolent struggle (rather than armed struggle) tend to win more often without killing nearly as many people or creating the infrastructural damage that leaves societies in perpetual states of social, economic, and political disarray.

So call the following developments good, bad, or a indifferent—they are simply five fairly surprising stories I paid attention to precisely because the events they covered were not violent:

The Fall of a Dictator in Burkina Faso. Yes, the 27-year-rule of yet another dictator came to an end in Burkina Faso after months of collective protests demanding his resignation. After significant elements of the political opposition defected and security forces began to disobey orders, President Blaise Compaore had no choice but to step down. Although the army’s seizure of power leaves the future of Burkina Faso uncertain, the mostly nonviolent nature of the Lwili Revolution gives us reason to be hopeful about the country’s longer-term prospects.

The Fall of a Government over Corruption Issues in Bulgaria. The “Dance with Me” campaign emerged in 2013 to protest government corruption and economic hardship. Civil society went into all-out revolt against the ruling leadership after the government appointed Delyan Peevski, a businessman with a spotty corruption record, to head up Bulgaria’s internal security service. As deepening economic crisis generated shared grievances against the entire government, the movement gathered steam. In July 2014, the entire government resigned.

Nonviolent Resistance during the Ukrainian Civil War—in both Ukraine & Russia. You’ve heard all about the Ukrainian army’s operations against separatist rebels in the east. You’ve probably heard less about the growing nonviolent resistance to those separatists, including an episode in May wherein thousands of unarmed demonstrators drove these rebels out of Mariupol. Anti-war sentiment has transformed into rallies against the Kiev government’s all-out war in the east. The anti-war activists in Ukraine are not alone. They have allies within Russia itself, as seen during a thousands-strong march against the war in September.

Nonviolent Resistance to the Taliban in Pakistan. In December, the Pakistani Taliban attacked a school in Peshawar, killing hundreds of children and injuring hundreds more. In response, communities throughout Pakistan have staged protests and demonstrations against armed groups throughout the country. In one episode, community members in Islamabad have surrounded and threatened to “reclaim” a Taliban-aligned mosque to begin to break down the power structures of the group.

Nonviolent Resistance in Palestine and Israel. Many Palestinians living in the West Bank and Gaza Strip tire of the constant question: “Where is the Palestinian Gandhi?” In reality, there is a great deal of nonviolent resistance in the Palestinian Territories, as well as a great number of grassroots activists with a sophisticated understanding of its strategic advantages. As the Gaza War raged over the summer of 2014, media attention was understandably distracted away from the many thousands of Palestinians engaged in nonviolent struggle for self-determination—and the Israeli soldiers who refused to participate in the war.

Gandhi Clip on the Salt March (teaching clip for non-violence and direct action)

Peaceful protest is much more effective than violence for toppling dictators
By Max Fisher November 5, 2013
“…Political scientist Erica Chenoweth used to believe, as many do, that violence is the most reliable way to get rid of a dictator. History is filled, after all, with coups, rebellions and civil wars. She didn’t take public protests or other forms of peaceful resistance very seriously; how could they possible upend a powerful, authoritarian regime?

Then, as Chenoweth recounts in a Ted Talk posted online Monday, she put together some data and was surprised by what she found. “I collected data on all major nonviolent and violent campaigns for the overthrow of a government or a territorial liberation since 1900,” she says — hundreds of cases. “The data blew me away.”

Here’s her chart, which pretty clearly suggests that nonviolent movements are much likelier to work:..”

How did Gandhi win? Mark Engler and Paul Engler October 8, 2014
“…History remembers Mohandas Gandhi’s Salt March as one of the great episodes of resistance in the past century and as a campaign which struck a decisive blow against British imperialism. In the early morning of March 12, 1930, Gandhi and a trained cadre of 78 followers from his ashram began a march of more than 200 miles to the sea. Three and a half weeks later, on April 5, surrounded by a crowd of thousands, Gandhi waded into the edge of the ocean, approached an area on the mud flats where evaporating water left a thick layer of sediment, and scooped up a handful of salt…”

The March on the Salt Works – Gandhi (1981)

“Published on Apr 24, 2013

A Scene from the film Gandhi – 1981. I do not own this clip, I just enjoy this scene. Please support the original movie…”

Good News Peace