Eco-Terrorism, Eco-Fascism, Eco-Extremism, Eco-Anarchism and the Białowieża Forest

Europe’s last remaining primeval forest, the beautiful Białowieża forest, home to bison, foxes, and a plethora of other living beings, the last remnants of a wild Europe now remembered only in myth and legend, located in the area now called Poland, is under attack from loggers.

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As stated in the video above, the EU’s top court has ordered the Polish government to stop logging in the area. Poland’s rising far-right nationalist movement has taken issue with this move, calling the environmentalists, who are looking to defend and support the forest, “green terrorists“.

This is not the first time eco-radicals and anarchists have been accused of being terrorists, with events like those in Langnau Switzerland in 2010 bringing eco-anarchism back into British press, being labeled as terrorist acts. The FBI lists eco-anarchist groups like Earth First!, ALF and ELF as terrorist groups. But it is utterly bizarre to label groups who at the most cause property damage as terrorist groups.

Is it terrorism to sabotage logging equipment, block roads, spike and sit in trees, and not harm people, inflict no violence upon anyone and generally go out of your way to not hurt people?

Is it terrorism to cut down and destroy one of the oldest living ecosystems on this planet, home to more wildlife than you could hope to count, a source of healing for our atmosphere, a lifeform in and of it-self, in a brutal and violent fashion?

One seems like terrorism to me, the other not.

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What about that other label that environmentalists are often brushed with though – eco-fascism: does that hold any weight to it?

In reaction to the rise of Trumpism and the growing right-wing popularist movements in the USA and in Europe, antifa and anti-fascism have become more visually active and increasingly part of everyday politics now. Communist-anarchist groups, linked to antifa, have recently done interviews with FOX news on the matter of racism and authoritarianism in the Trump era of politics.

But what of eco-anarchists?

Earth First! have for a long time spoken out against fascism and xenophobia and they have supported actions that directly opposed Trump before his presidency.

Environmentalism as a movement has long supported anti-colonialist struggles, and it is arguable that environmentalism cannot be divorced from anti-colonialism – with fascism’s Italian-imperialism having undeniable ties/friendly-relations with colonialism.

Radical environmentalist writer Derrick Jensen has written about, in opposition to, fascism’s ties to and influence on industries and business still going today.

Many of those who want to tie environmentalism in with fascism seek to draw on Nazi sympathy for nature, drawing from blood and soil narratives tied to the Nazi green-wing. This is obviously a pretty poor straw-man argument, but is one that is often peddled, and appeals to reducto ad Hitlerum type cheap arguments.

So any claim trying to tie eco-radicals with fascism seems very weak, if any can be made at all, with eco-radicals and eco-anarchist having closer ties to anti-fascists than the far-right.

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But what are the sentiments between radical groups?

The communist-anarchist group It’s Going Down have recently criticised the eco-extremist group Individualists Tending Towards the Wild (ITS), as part of an online set of back-and-forth articles surrounding eco-extremism and its relationship with anarchism. These have generally been criticisms of the more violent tactics of this group in Mexico, who embrace the category of terrorism and intend to create terror for the civilised.

It’s Going Down have accused this eco-extremist group of being eco-fascists and sought to besmirch the names of anarchist projects with any links to or who are in discussion with eco-extremism.

Eco-extremism is a movement that broke away from the anarcho-primitivist and Kaczynski following eco-radical milieu, in favour of a nihilist-pagan type approach to eco-radical discourse and practice. Personally I’m not convinced of all of what I’ve seen coming out of eco-extremist writings and find ITS’s love of randomised violence entirely vulgar and undesirable, but have sympathy for a great deal of the eco-extremist critique and argument, particularly their criticisms of anarchists and environmentalists on the Left.

And I can sympathise aspects with this critique of anarchists by this eco-extremist writer, in the weakness of anarchist arguments, where anarchists just call anything they don’t like fascist – something that It’s Going Down appear to be doing.

Something that I love about the eco-extremist discourse is their opposition to anthropocentrism and embrace of wild nature, which they define as –

“Wild Nature: Wild Nature is the primary agent in eco-extremist war. The philistines oppose the invocation of Wild Nature as atavism or superstition, but they do so merely out of their own domestication and idiocy. Wild Nature is all that grows and is manifested on the planet in animate and inanimate objects, from pebbles to oceans, from microorganisms to all of the flora and fauna that have developed on Earth. It also encompasses all of the stars, galaxies, moons, suns, meteors, etc. More specifically, Wild Nature is the acknowledgement that humanity is not the source and end of physical and spiritual reality, but merely a part of it, and perhaps not even a major part.” taken from the journal Atassa: Readings in Eco-Extremism

This embrace of the wild is something that much of environmentalism and most anarchists have lost, as both have become more and more amalgamated into civilisation and its narratives.

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Returning to the Białowieża forest, one of the last remaining places that fully embody wildness, whether you view it from a pagan-eco-extremist type gaze or from an eco-anarchist eco-radical gaze, it is a location of obvious beauty and value.

We cannot say whether or not EU protection will do much, especially with the rising tide of nationalism within Poland and the amount of illegal logging that goes unchecked around the world.

What we can do is be allies to the wild, in living feral lives and being iconoclastic towards this culture/civilisation/Leviathan that is anthropocentrically destroying the biosphere, whose wild beauty we love.

We are not fascists or terrorists, but we will use what means we have available to us and will fight for what we love.

This site recently republished this article on the International Mobilisation Call For The Defence Of Hambacher Forest, as part of the response to defend this forest in Europe.

We need to return to the woods and defend them, through all means at our disposal.

To end with a few quotes –

“The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness.” John Muir

 

“Culture has lead us to betray our own aboriginal spirit and wholeness, into an ever-worsening realm of synthetic, isolating, impoverishing estrangement. Which is not to say that there are no more everyday pleasures, without which we would loose our humanness. But as our plight deepens, we glimpse how much must be erased for our redemption.” John Zerzan

 

“We need the tonic of wildness…At the same time that we are earnest to explore and learn all things, we require that all things be mysterious and unexplorable, that land and sea be indefinitely wild, unsurveyed and unfathomed by us because unfathomable. We can never have enough of nature.” Thoreau

 

“The Wild still lingered in him and the wolf in him merely slept.” Jack London

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Dead Setts: Please Fight For Badgers

“As hunt saboteurs we are witnesses to the all-out war against wildlife which seems to be the main activity in the so-called countryside. Open country is the playground of the rich, and a few patches of scrubby woods remain only because they are managed for hunting and shooting. These copses and areas of scrub are not of sufficient size or quality to maintain a great diversity of plant and animal life. Whatever animals do manage to survive are terrorised, poisoned, trapped and shot by gamekeepers, terrier men, blethering aristocrats and various other professional or amateur sadists. While crossing the countryside to sabotage a foxhunt we will usually find much evidence of other wildlife abuse – shooting pens, snares, larsen-traps and often active shooters. I have seen a pair of rifle-shooters halfway through the day surrounded by the corpses of at least fifty wood-pigeons and a crow. Without our intervention they would have killed another fifty birds in the rest of the day. Walking, cycling or driving through country lanes it is all too easy to believe that the countryside is an idyllic refuge for nature, but looking a little deeper it appears more like an enormous factory of waste, pollution and animal abuse. Even the massacre of wildlife does not compare to the stinking farmyards, littered with dead machinery, where millions of sick and suffering animals are raised on antibiotics, hormones and cash-crop concentrates to feed up the next generation of European heart-attack victims who occasionally trundle past in their 4x4s. An irate farmer once said to a sab, “What would happen if I wasn’t here managing this land? The trees would grow and the birds would come back! There’d be little birds everywhere! And then what would you do?” This fear and hatred of wild plants and animals is typical of the alienation from nature that agro-industrial workers suffer. As usual, hatred justifies abuse.” from Do Or Die issue 10

Today I went badger sett checking with a group of people which included another hunt sab, someone from badger watch and someone I absolutely didn’t trust. Please watch the clips for info on the day –

 

 

 

The cull zone is being extended to the point that it is going to make it so difficult for us to be an effective presence of resistance and to protect the badgers. So we need people who are sympathetic with the cause to join in and to sab the cull. We need people who are trustworthy, safe and reliable, because informants and infiltrators could potentially create a huge amount of problems.

Here is info on how to join the hunt sabs.

Here is info on how get involved outside of direct actions.

Here are some 2 links on laws you should be aware of – link 1, link 2.

Here is information on how to badger watch.

Some photos from today at the sett that’s been killed off –

 


Cyber Activist Group Anonymous, WW3 And The Left

The hacker group Anonymous have become a fond favourite of liberals and radicals, particularly those of an Occupyist persuasion.

Their Wikipedia page states –

“In its early form, the concept was adopted by a decentralized online community acting anonymously in a coordinated manner, usually toward a loosely self-agreed goal, and primarily focused on entertainment, or “lulz“. Beginning with 2008’s Project Chanology—a series of protests, pranks, and hacks targeting the Church of Scientology—the Anonymous collective became increasingly associated with collaborative hacktivism on a number of issues internationally. Individuals claiming to align themselves with Anonymous undertook protests and other actions (including direct action) in retaliation against copyright-focused campaigns by motion picture and recording industry trade associations. Later targets of Anonymous hacktivism included government agencies of the U.S., Israel, Tunisia, Uganda, and others; the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant; child pornography sites; copyright protection agencies; the Westboro Baptist Church; and corporations such as PayPal, MasterCard, Visa, and Sony. Anons have publicly supported WikiLeaks and the Occupy movement. Related groups LulzSec and Operation AntiSec carried out cyberattacks on U.S. government agencies, media, video game companies, military contractors, military personnel, and police officers, resulting in the attention of law enforcement to the groups’ activities. Some actions by members of the group have been described as being anti-Zionist. It has threatened to cyber-attack Israel and engaged in the “#OpIsrael” cyber-attacks of Israeli websites on Yom HaShoah (Holocaust Remembrance Day) in 2013.”

In recent days/weeks they have uploaded a number of videos, with a common theme of impending doom –

The sad fact is though, their video’s, more than anything, appear to support the same culture they seek to resist, through being accumulated into the Spectacle of contemporary culture through the production-narrative of recuperation. And this appears true of the entirety of the leftist project.

To quote prominent anarchist primitivist and post-left philosopher John Zerzan –

“It isn’t that there’s no energy afoot in the world. On any given day on any continent, one can see anti-government riots; direct actions in support of animal liberation or to protect the earth; concerted efforts to resist the building of dams, superhighways, industrial installations; prison uprisings; spontaneous outbreaks of targeted vandalism by the fed-up and pissed-off; wildcat strikes; and the energy of countless infoshops, zines, primitive skills camps, schools, and gatherings; radical reading groups, Food Not Bombs, etc. The list of oppositional acts and alternative projects is very considerable.

What isn’t happening is the Left. Historically, it has failed monumentally. What war, depression or ecocide did it ever prevent? The Left now exists mainly as a fading vehicle of protest in, say, the electoral circuses that fewer and fewer believe in anyway. It hasn’t been a source of inspiration in many decades. It is dying out.” John Zerzan, The Left? No Thanks!

Perhaps Anonymous will help civilisation redeem itself; perhaps they will hasten its collapse through perpetuating the same narratives that it is collapsing under. We will have to see. Whatever is the case, it is apparent that something is happening.

To quote from The Coming Insurrection by The Invisible Committee  –

“It’s useless to wait-for a breakthrough, for the revolution, the nuclear apocalypse or a social movement. To go on waiting is madness. The catastrophe is not coming, it is here. We are already situated within the collapse of a civilization. It is within this reality that we must choose sides.”

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French Workers Destroy Machines In Factory And Rioters Set Police Car Ablaze

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GM&S auto-suppliers plant workers have been destroying equipment and have booby-trapped the factory, using gas canisters and petrol.

They have been slashing car seats and have stated “We refuse to be taken for a ride anymore”.

The French will always hold a unique position in radical history, and have continually maintained an active resistance culture.

This is a video of a recent riot in Paris, where a police car was set on fire –

How Peter Michael Bauer Found Rewilding, President Donald Trump, If Urban Scout Lives And Other Topics – Interview

Through his infamous blog Urban Scout and his project Rewild Portland, Peter Michael Bauer has become a prominent force within radical environmentalist culture, both online and offline.

Following the previous post featuring his 2012 talk on rewilding, we conducted an interview with him to get some of his current thoughts and hear about his current projects –

How did you first come to align yourself with anti-civ thought?

“When I was 16 I read Ishmael by Daniel Quinn, and though later I learned his intention was not necessarily to create “anti-civ” thought, I have a hard time understanding how it would lead to anything else. I immediately dropped out of high school and ran away from home to learn ancestral skills from a school on the other side of the country. Later I went on to read some Jensen and Zerzan (and all the contributors to Green Anarchy magazine like Kevin Tucker, Red Wolf Returns, etc.).”

What does rewilding mean to you?

“For me, it means returning to a lifeway that sits within the ecology of a place. It’s hard to say exactly, because it requires clearly defining or redefining what it means to be wild. There are so many connotations to that idea that the word rewilding is never going to actually be able to mean what it means. We really need a better word, but it’s the best we’ve got at the moment. I look to immediate-return gatherer-hunters for inspiration in what could be thought of as the most free or “wild” people. So in a sense, it’s returning to that way of life, or if that isn’t possible, a new way that functions in the same kind of way.

I also see it as a kind of torch. Because we are all captives yet aren’t meant to be, we carry the torch of freedom inside ourselves, and keep it alive by passing it from one generation to the next. It’s more than just an idea, it’s a deep feeling that says “This isn’t the way things are supposed to be.” So it’s kind of like a thousand-year escape plan. Or perhaps, hunkering in a bunker and planning what we will do and how we will live when the tornado (civilization) has passed. We can’t exactly live that way now (though we can do things to mitigate the pain that comes along with civilization), but we are striving in the direction of freedom and autonomy. Keeping our eye on the prize.”

Were there any specific life events that drew you to anti-civ thought?

“Ironically, playing the video game Sid Meier’s Civilization as a child really brought the forefront of civilization’s mythology to the surface of my consciousness. There are only two ways to win that game: colonization or genocide. So later in life when I began to learn about prehistory and civilized thought, it all made sense almost immediately. I think also having Star Wars and “The Force” as a sort of mythology and religion as a child made me want to connect on a deeper level with nature, and the experiences I had doing so gave me an empathy for the natural world, which led me to want to make the world a better place. So while those experiences don’t have direct connection to anti-civ thought, they made me interpret the ideas in a different way because I saw civilization as a force that was destructive to the natural world that I loved.”

Are there any books, writers, or philosophers you’d suggest to someone who is entering anti-civ discussions?

“I mean, I think the three classic big names are Quinn, Zerzan, and Jensen. I don’t really know what to suggest anymore, though, honestly. For me it’s more about geeking out and being in the milieu and following along with everyone. I think the Black and Green Review is a great way of following along with where a lot of contributors to the ideas in the movement are going. Because there is a diversity of writers, some fresh to the ideas and others more seasoned, it makes for a good dialogue. The main thing I would suggest is staying off the internet as much as possible and trying to have conversations and discussions around a campfire, or in coffee shops, living rooms, etc.—with people in real life.”

How did Rewild Portland come to be?

“Well, I realized there is no such thing as a hunter-gatherer, singular. If I was ever going to actually rewild, I needed to encourage enough people to join me so that we would have a culture. Then I realized that part of the reason that is difficult is because the current culture doesn’t allow alternative cultures to exist. So Rewild Portland was my attempt at bridging that divide: working the system to create a different one. Setting up the ideas and lifeways on a large enough scale so that when civilization goes down, this other story will be ready to take up. So long as civilization maintains a monopoly on violence, rewilding can’t happen in a real, meaningful way. Sure, you could probably go live in the forest with a handful of people without being arrested (if you are white), but that’s not really a culture, is it? I’m not into rewilding just myself. In fact, I think that is a misnomer. I’m working in the realm of what one might call “systemic rewilding.” Although 10 years ago, before all this “rewild yourself” self-help branding existed, that’s just what rewilding meant. Rewild Portland is basically groundwork for whatever comes next.”

What do you think is the best route for anti-civ activists to go down in response to the mass extinction event currently underway?

“I don’t think there is one right route for anyone. I don’t like to give prescriptions. One of my favorite and most frustrating things about Daniel Quinn is that he doesn’t present any solutions. He says something to the tune of, “I’m like the surgeon general. He didn’t say, ‘Stop smoking.’ He said, ‘Smoking causes cancer.’” I think when you leave it open-ended like that, you create many more solutions to a problem than if you give the one you think is right. What I really think is that everyone should follow their heart and their passions and do what they feel they need to do. There is often a drive to feel like what you are doing is the “most effective,” but the reality is that there really isn’t one thing that will be the most effective. Anyone who says they have figured that out should be seriously questioned.”

Has your outlook or activities changed much since Donald Trump took office?

“I think everyone in any activist community has taken notice of the “fascist creep.” So many white supremacists have come out of hiding and we’re all like, “Oh. Shit.” I mean, we kinda knew they were there…but it’s making us realize how important it is to engage in a dialogue against it, while figuring out what need it seems to be filling for white men. The only way to combat it is really to fill that need with something else. So, that’s what we have to figure out, and that’s what it’s making me think about.”

You’ve recently rereleased your book Rewild or Die. What do you want your readers to get from reading the book?

“The main point of that book was to introduce people to the ideas of rewilding and take them down the rabbit hole as fast and as briefly as possible, in order to inspire them to go back and go deeper on their own. I wanted to show people that rewilding is a lens through which you can view anything. It’s a systemic journey of culture change, not a self-help plan, not simply a back-to-nature commune. Of course, since its writing in 2008, there have been many people who have taken on that term as a self-help plan, which is both funny and maddening to me. That’s probably fine because it will bring more people to the deeper and more meaningful rewilding movement in general. But seeing all that, I realized there wasn’t really a resource out there specifically under the banner of “rewilding” doing that, so I rereleased it in hopes that more people would go beyond the self-centered version to a more holistic one.”

Does Urban Scout still survive in any way, shape, or form and will he ever be as big a part of your life as he has been over the years?

“There are parts of Urban Scout that I love and parts that I hate. Things I still think I did that were genius, and things I think were a huge mistake. If he ever makes an appearance again, it will be more of a “roast” than a celebration. I still love Rewild or Die, warts and all. However, I’m way more in love with the work that I am doing now in my rewilding philosophy classes because it is real, face-to-face human interaction and discussion of the ideas. Those classes and all of those people are informing the next book on rewilding that I am writing, and I couldn’t be more excited about it for that reason. It’s like, so many minds working together to create this thing. I’ve always considered myself a catalyst, not a guru (though part of Urban Scout’s shtick was feigned celebrity, which confused and angered a lot of people—for good reason), and so in this work I feel more like a court reporter, which is I think the best place for a catalyst to be.”

Are there any interesting projects on the horizon for you?

“We have the first-ever North American Rewilding Conference coming up in October. Honestly I’m so busy with everything that I haven’t quite delved into it yet. Watch for developments in May. I like to start things small and grow very slowly. I learned that from the oak tree. The conference will be an Open Space conference, where there are no expert presentations. Everyone comes together at the very beginning on the first day and creates the topics of discussion for the entire conference. It’s a nonhierarchical, organic, and community-driven way of organizing a conference. I imagine it will be like my rewilding philosophy classes, only way more amazing, with more people.”

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The Confusion Regarding Air Pollution In The UK And Its Consequences: Human and Non-Human

In February last year, the far-right wing newspaper The Daily Mail reported that air pollution is “killing” 40,000 British people a year. Several months later, Greenpeace posted on their website that air pollution is causing 40,000 lives to be “cut short”.

These claims have been criticised within the British media and by scientists. And the truth seems to indicate that air pollution, rather than being the sole cause of these deaths, is actually a contributing factor in a situation that is highly complex and difficult to understand.

One of the central issues is throughout this debate has been that the figure of 40,000 was produced through statistical research. The problem here is that, statistical evidence, while it can be beneficial in some areas of scientific research, is reductive to the extent that it often limits the variables so as to remove all context from the findings and produce numbers that are don’t actually reflect the situational truth.

So the questions we really need to ask is, what is the truth, in its situated context? What can we say we really know, given that most of us aren’t scientists and are relying on evidence produced by those with personal agendas? Because the lies told by Exxon scientists regarding the harmful effects of oil and global warming serve as a reminder that scientific research isn’t performed in a non-political vacuum, free from authoritarian dynamics that serve the interests of elites.

It is highly likely that air pollution globally causes the death of more than 3 million people, 75% of which are in Asia, where economic globalisation has taken a foothold in, leading to the escalation of industrialism (often in the guise of “development) across the continent. This stands to reason, given the how much air pollution has risen across the worlds cities and the encroachment of urbanisation in the “developing” world. In fact, The World Health Organisation has previously reported that air pollution kills 6.5 million people a year and that pollution causes the deaths of 1.7 children a year. Proposed solutions to this problem, such as a new type of inhaler, are reliant on the production of technologies – technologies whose production are reliant on industrial production and distribution, which are the leading contributing factors in the global air crisis.

According to Carbon Brief, the UK’s carbon emissions fell by 6% in 2016, which would indicate a (slightly) improved situation. But primary air pollutants include – carbon dioxide, sulphur oxides, nitrogen oxides, carbon monoxide, volatile organic compounds, particulates, persistent free radicals, toxic metals, ammonia, chlorofluorocarbons, odours from sewage and industrial processes, and radioactive pollutants. So does this statistic reflect the situated truth? Professor Stephen Holgate, Medical Research Council Clinical Professor of Immunopharmacology and Honorary Consultant Physician within Medicine at the University of Southampton, states in the video below that air pollution is “affecting our health in many different ways, that we’re only just beginning to understand”.

So far the focus here has been entirely anthropocentric – that is, with a focus on the impact on humans. So what of the non-human impact?

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Air pollutants like sulphuric acid, when combined with the water droplets in clouds, can cause the water droplets to become acidic and form acid rain. This leads to physiological damage to plant cells and geochemical changes in soils and soil waters that obstruct growth by affecting absorption of nutrients by roots and by leaching nutrients from soil. In British trees this causes damage to their leaves, which limits the nutrients available to them.

Air pollution can also cause eutrophication. This is the process whereby rain can carry and deposit the nitrogen in some pollutants on rivers and soils, which adversely affects the nutrients in the soil and water bodies. This impacts upon the living beings, such as the fish, frogs, insects and birds who make rivers their homes, which impacts the wider biodiversity of these islands.

The ground-level ozone, produced via air pollution, is also highly harmful for vegetation and can have a drastic impact on ecosystems and the animals who make those ecosystems their homes.

So it is apparent that air pollution is a problem, for the human animal and non-human-living-beings, and the situation is one that is highly complex, confused through the mediums that attempt to reduce the context of the discussion to only those variables that suit their particular interests.

Proposed solutions are highly reliant on the effectiveness of state measures, which have so far failed to improve the situation, and technologies that involve the same industrial processes that are producing this worsening situation. The eco-extremist journal Atassa states – “We are now entering an age of extremes, an age of uncertainty, where leftist illusions and conservative platitudes can no longer prepare us for our future course”. This is a truth than anarchists and environmentalists need to embrace.

I’m going to end this with a quote from a book I am currently reading, available through Little Black Cart (who also published Feral Consciousness).

Biodiversity is the expression of healthy ecology. It may seem distant to these Isles because these Isles are sick. It has been said that civilised man walks the earth leaving deserts in his footprints. As the frontiers of this civilisation opened up, so the cedars of Lebanon and Broadleaf forests of this island were trampled underfoot. With the great forests all but destroyed the soils of Lebanon eroded, and washed and blew away. Thanks to this island’s mild temperate climate, its fate was to remain a different kind of desert. A desert of ploughed fields, of a thousand swaying barley stalks – from Cracks in a Grey Sky an anthology of Do Or Die: Voices from the Ecological Resistance