May Day Belongs to the People of the World – Student and Youth for a People’s Peace (1971)

1946-1989, Blockade/Barricade, Date, Disruptive Spaces, Occupation, Tactics of Disruption, Urban Spaces

This piece is a call to action for individuals to join in the civil disobedience measures that will be taking place beginning on May 1, 1971 and continuing until a peace treaty is implemented by the Nixon Administration. Should Nixon fail to call an immediate end to the war within two days, the group is set to close down the federal government through acts of civil disobedience. The importance of these actions being non-violent is stressed, while various methods of blockades, strikes, and more are mentioned. The author also articulates how demonstrations should be carried out in more cities than just Washington D.C. and that all communities should get involved as everyone is affected by the war.

May Day Tactical Manual – Student and Youth for a People’s Peace (1971)

1946-1989, Blockade/Barricade, Date, Disruptive Spaces, Occupation, Tactics of Disruption, Urban Spaces

This is a manual published in advance of the 1971 May Day protests in Washington D.C. It describes how to carry out civil disobedience actions in opposition to the Vietnam War. Information on non-violent civil disobedience, the schedule for when actions will be carried out, the organization form that will be taken, various tactics that will be utilized, as well as images and maps of the city are included in the document.

Thousands of anti-war protesters gather near the Washington Monument in Washington, D.C., May 3, 1971, one of several days of civil disobedience called the Mayday march on Washington. (AP Photo)

The Mandate for 1992: Resistance – Bobby Castillo (1992)

1990-2010, Date, Indigenous, Self Institution, Subjectives of Refusal, Subjects Redefined, Tactics of Disruption

This piece was published in the 1992 program of the International Tribunal of Indigenous Peoples and Oppressed Nations in the USA. Bobby Castillo, the author of the mandate as well as the coordinator of the International Tribunal, challenged the 500th anniversary of the “discovery” of America by Christopher Columbus, demanding that myth be destroyed. Furthermore, he demanded the release of political prisoners/prisoners of war and the ability of oppressed national movements to exercise their rights to self-determination. This document serves to raise awareness to the new resistance of the American Indian Movement and to reaffirm the basic human rights of indigenous groups to determine their own destiny. Additionally, both the document and the tribunal are evidence of efforts by indigenous groups to redefine themselves within the current system.

People’s Blockade of S.F. Bay

1946-1989, Date, Disruptive Spaces, Infrastructure/Data, Occupation, Tactics of Disruption

This piece was an anonymous call to action to impose a people’s blockade on the Oakland Army Terminal and the naval facilities at the port of Oakland-San Francisco. This was in response to President Nixon’s blockading of Haiphong and the destructive air and naval bombardments he had recently ordered on Vietnam. The Oakland Army Terminal was a major loading point for U.S. troops and munitions to be sent to Vietnam, which is why these anti-war activists sought to disrupt its operation in the hopes of forcing Nixon to bring the Vietnam War to an end.

What’s Really Happening at Gustafsen Lake and Why (1995)

1990-2010, Capitalism, Date, Defining the Enemy, Disruptive Spaces, Indigenous, Occupation, Subjectives of Refusal, Tactics of Disruption, The 'Natural World'

This piece describes the conflict between sundancers of the Shuswap First Nation and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) during August and September of 1995. Members of the Shuswap Nation were engaging in their annual sundance ceremonies when individuals from the RCMP SWAT team began encircling the camp. More Shuswap sundancers as well as other nations soon arrived to defend those already there from violence. Throughout the coming weeks, the RCMP began painting these individuals as “terrorists,” blaming them for recent shootings in the area, and cutting off all communication to and from the camp, including that of the media. Those in the camp demand that an impartial third party tribunal be set up to decide on the question of jurisdiction over unceded Native American territories. They have refused to leave their defensive position until their petition has been forwarded from the Governor General of Canada to the British Privy Council and the Queen, as stipulated in the Royal Proclamation of 1763. The piece includes information on how to contact the various governments, lawyers, and other groups involved in the situation to apply pressure in support of the Shuswap, Mohawk, and all other indigenous nations.

An Excerpt From an Interview With Earl Livermore About the Indians of All Tribes (Ioat) Occupation of Alcatraz – 1970

1946-1989, Capitalism, Date, Defining the Enemy, Indigenous, Occupation, Subjectives of Refusal, Tactics of Disruption

This is a transcript of an interview with Earl Livermore, a leader of the American Indian Movement. He describes the thought behind occupying Alcatraz, the organization of various committees, schools, medical centers, and transportation methods on the island, as well as the outside support the activists have been receiving in support of their occupation. Additionally, he reads a part of the Alcatraz Proclamation (1969) to give listeners a clearer sense of what specifically the Indian activists desire of Alcatraz.

This is a poster created by Earl Livermore. In addition to serving as a leader of the American Indian Movement, Livermore was also an artist. The proceeds from this poster went directly into the Alcatraz fund.

The Alcatraz Proclamation (1969)

1946-1989, Date, Defining the Enemy, Disruptive Spaces, Indigenous, Occupation, Subjectives of Refusal, Tactics of Disruption, The 'Natural World', White Supremacy

This was a proclamation issued by the group of indigenous peoples who occupied Alcatraz Island beginning on November 20, 1969 and lasting until June 11, 1971. In the proclamation, Natives demanded the reclamation of the land based on historical precedents and called attention to the poor conditions of Indian Reservations across the country. The proclamation was addressed to the “Great White Father and All His People” with the intended audience being both the US government and the American people.

“We, the native Americans, re-claim the land known as Alcatraz Island in the name of all American Indians by right of discovery.”

Mitsubishi Stumped! – NYC Earth First! (1998)

1990-2010, Blockade/Barricade, Capitalism, Date, Defining the Enemy, Disruptive Spaces, Occupation, Tactics of Disruption, The 'Natural World', The Workplace

This piece describes the direct actions taken by NYC Earth First! and Wetlands Rainforest Action Group activists at the Mitsubishi International office building. The activists entered the building with multiple 600-pound concrete-filled barrels, lockboxes, and megaphones. They used these tools to lock themselves to the doors and barrels, barricade the entrances, and effectively shut down the building until police forces arrived to break it up. The blockaders demanded to meet with Mitsubishi’s president and stood their ground until the blockade was deconstructed by the police. The activists sought to raise public awareness for the destructive environmental practices of Mitsubishi and repeatedly chanted the phrase “Earth First! Profits Last! Boycott Mitsubishi!” This piece by NYC Earth First! concluded with a call for all readers to boycott products with the Mitsubishi logo and with information on how to contact the president of the Mitsubishi International Corporation.

“We made Mitsubishi’s life hell for a day and got our message out with great newspaper, TV, international newswire and internet website coverage, bringing home the message: “Earth First! Profits Last! Boycott Mitsubishi!”

Maine Earth First! Disrupts State’s Approval of Plum Creek Development Plan – Maine EF! (2010)

1990-2010, Capitalism, Date, Defining the Enemy, Disruptive Spaces, Occupation, Sabotage/Ecotage, Tactics of Disruption, The 'Natural World', The Workplace

This article, published by Maine Earth First! details the occupation of the Land Use Regulatory Commission’s meeting in Bangor, Maine in opposition to the agency’s approval of Plum Creek’s proposal to develop in the Moosehead Lake region. Activists argued that approval of this plan will allow Plum Creek to conduct harmful extraction projects, dump sewage sludge, clear cut forests, among other detrimental acts on the environment. Maine Earth First!ers burst into the room prior to the vote, demanded a chance to have votes of their own, and continued to occupy the meeting room by sitting down and linking arms.

Five Centuries of Resistance in Argentina – Kendra Fehrer and Brad Will (2004)

1990-2010, Capitalism, Date, Defining the Enemy, Disruptive Spaces, Indigenous, Occupation, Sabotage/Ecotage, Subjectives of Refusal, Subjects Redefined, Tactics of Disruption, The 'Natural World', The Workplace

This piece describes the direct action tactics used by the Ava Guaraní indigenous peoples of Argentina and their allies against Tabacal Sugar, a subsidiary of the Seaboard Corporation. Tabacal Sugar owns the ancestral land of the Ava Guaraní, which is found in Salta, a northern province of Argentina. Despite being displaced from their land over five decades ago, members of the Ava Guaraní community have occupied the land in their ancestral homeland to harvest native fruits, vegetables, and medicinal herbs. In addition to the actions taken by the indigenous community themselves, activists from the Worcester Global Action Network, on behalf of the Ava Guaraní, disrupted Seaboard Corporation’s annual shareholders meeting to demand the corporation address the displacement of the indigenous peoples in Salta.

A Civilian’s Guide to Direct Action – CrimethInc. (2017)

2011-Present, Date, Disruptive Spaces, Uncategorized

This piece is a step-by-step guide published by CrimethInc. on organizing direct action. Common objectives of direct action, how to navigate the initial planning stages, what to do during and after the action, as well as other information is described and illustrated in the document.

Blockade Personal Accounts – Earth First!ers (1983)

1946-1989, Blockade/Barricade, Capitalism, Date, Defining the Enemy, Disruptive Spaces, Occupation, Tactics of Disruption, The 'Natural World'

This piece consists of personal accounts of three Earth First!ers during their various blockades over the course of a two week period. The blockades occurred in order to stop the continued destruction of the Bald Mountain road in the Kalmiopsis region. In each instance, activists locked arms, forming a barrier between the bulldozer and the rest of the road, temporarily halting destruction. Additionally, the second account describes how in addition to forming a blockade, Earth First!ers chained themselves to the bulldozers, halting the destruction for even longer.

“We feel in our hearts that we have contributed to a great cause, and helped with the advent of a new tactic in the protection of wilderness in America: Direct Action.”

Ecodefenders Sabotage Bighorn Hunt – Rod Coronado (1987)

1946-1989, Date, Disruptive Spaces, Sabotage/Ecotage, Tactics of Disruption, The 'Natural World'

This piece, written by Rod Coronado, an active member of the Sea Shepherd Society, the Hunt Saboteurs Association, the Animal Liberation Front, and Earth First! describes the direct actions taken over the course of a week to prevent the trophy hunting of Bighorn Sheep near the Old Dad Peak region of California. For the first time in 114 years, a recent state amendment to the California Department of Fish and Game code granted a select number of applicants the opportunity to hunt one Bighorn each. Activists from both Earth First! and various animal rights groups engaged in acts of sabotage to disrupt the hunt, particularly through the use of horns and whistles. Although the ecodefenders were unable to prevent the death of all targeted Bighorns, they were able to set a precedent on the issue, draw greater attention to the abuse of wildlife, in addition to saving four Bighorn lives.

“They were totally effective in their attempts to disrupt the hunt. They ruined it.” – Dr. Loren Lutz (Founder of the Society for the Conservation of Bighorn Sheep)

How to Sink Whalers, Driftnetters, and Other Environmentally Destructive Ships – Earth First! (n.d.)

Capitalism, Defining the Enemy, Disruptive Spaces, Sabotage/Ecotage, Tactics of Disruption, The 'Natural World'

This is an in-depth guide provided by Earth First! on how to sink whalers, drift netters, and other environmentally-destructive ships. Necessary tool lists and chronological steps to undertake with diagrams included are described and illustrated in detail throughout the packet.

Return to Bald Mountain: The Second Battle of the North Kalmiopsis – Chant Thomas (1987)

1946-1989, Blockade/Barricade, Capitalism, Date, Defining the Enemy, Disruptive Spaces, Occupation, Tactics of Disruption, The 'Natural World'

A story from Vol. VII, No. IV of the Earth First! Journal that describes the direct actions taken by Oregon Earth First!ers in response to the Siskiyou National Forest’s reneging on an agreement to postpone logging within the North Kalmiopsis Roadless Area. While much of the wilderness in the Kalmiopsis region is protected, this action occurred to defend the hundreds of thousands of unprotected roadless areas. Activists engaged in a precedent-setting seven direct actions in addition to providing non-violent direct action training sessions to others. The piece concludes with a call to action to all Earth First!ers as well as anyone interested in participating in the direct actions the group has planned in the coming weeks to protect the North Kalmiopsis.

EF! Climbers Guild Vol. 1 Climb Training Orientation -Earth First! (2014)

2011-Present, Date, Disruptive Spaces, Occupation, Tactics of Disruption, The 'Natural World'

This is an in-depth guide provided by Earth First! on safe methods to climb and rig rope structures needed in direct action situations. Knots to learn, equipment checklists, the psychological aspects of climbing, safe climbing steps, and more are described and illustrated in detail throughout the packet.

What is ALEC? – Project Baldwin (2011)

2011-Present, Blockade/Barricade, Capitalism, Date, Defining the Enemy, Occupation, Sabotage/Ecotage, Tactics of Disruption

This is a call to action from Project Baldwin against the American Legislative Exchange Council’s (ALEC) November meeting in Scottsdale, Arizona. Project Baldwin argues that ALEC is an organization that brings corporations and legislators together to draft legislation that destroys the environment, increases the criminalization, incarceration, and deportation of individuals, and divides indigenous communities, all while those involved continue to profit from these new laws. Project Baldwin asserts that in 2009 alone, over 200 bills that ALEC helped organize were passed into federal law. The group is calling on individuals to join the fight for four days in Scottsdale, Arizona, and help employ “a diversity of tactics” to stop ALEC’s November meeting from happening.

For the Kimberley: A Glimpse of Recent Resistance (2011)

2011-Present, Blockade/Barricade, Capitalism, Date, Defining the Enemy, Disruptive Spaces, Occupation, Tactics of Disruption, The 'Natural World'

This article provides dated updates of the tactics of resistance used by activists against the construction of a gas plant and port at James Price Point in the Kimberley region of West Australia. The planned project would destroy endangered species like the sea turtle and their habitats, ruin the pristine natural ecosystems of the region, and have major social and economic impacts, as the Kimberley region relies heavily on tourism. The piece captures some of the disruptive actions taken by activists over the summer of 2011. These include locking themselves to bulldozers, establishing blockades of construction entry points, occupying space at the site, among others. This campaign was ultimately successful, as by 2014, the development of the plant was officially stopped.

President of the Lac du Flambeau Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians Letter to the Chairman of the Town of Lac du Flambeau – John Johnson Sr. (2023)

2011-Present, Date, Disruptive Spaces, Indigenous, Subjectives of Refusal, The 'Natural World', Uncategorized

This letter, written in December of 2023 by the President of the Lac du Flambeau Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians, John Johnson Sr., to the Chairman of the Town of Lac du Flambeau, Matt Gaulke, communicated that the tribe would be enacting a Road Access Permitting Ordinance applying to all roads that cross tribal land. This would allow legal access to the roads in exchange for a fee, and came after months of contentious dispute over road access on the reservation. In January of 2023, the northern Wisconsin tribe barricaded four reservation roadways they argued were being illegally used. In this letter, the tribe president demanded nearly $10 million to resolve past trespass violations, and required payment of these damages before issuance of any road permits under this new ordinance.

Monkeywrenching Principles Excerpt from Ecodefense: A Field Guide to Monkeywrenching – David Foreman (1985)

1946-1989, Date, Disruptive Spaces, Sabotage/Ecotage, Tactics of Disruption, The 'Natural World'

In an excerpt from Chapter 1 of Ecodefense: A Field Guide to Monkeywrenching, David Foreman lists and describes 11 principles that monkeywrenching must follow in order to succeed as a campaign of resistance.

Treesitter’s Journal Entry (2000)

1990-2010, Date, Defining the Enemy, Disruptive Spaces, Occupation, Patriarchy, Tactics of Disruption, The 'Natural World', Uncategorized

A journal entry written by an anonymous treesitter discusses issues of privilege and oppression, and how these issues relate to direct action campaigns to protect the forests.

“I see clearly that the forest will never be truly protected until this entire system of oppression is brought to a grinding halt.”

“Ultimately we will never save the forest until the bigger picture of oppression is addressed. As long as the rape and oppression of women continues so will the rape and oppression of the earth. It is one and the same.”

Canopy Action Network Newsletter (2001)

1990-2010, Date, Disruptive Spaces, Occupation, Tactics of Disruption, The 'Natural World'

An excerpt from a Canopy Action Network newsletter provided a strategic analysis of the disruptive tactic of tree sitting. The history of this action was discussed in detail, including a description of the development of tree sitting techniques over time.

“As seen with the cancellations of timber sales like Watch Mountain, Harry Thomas, Kaisen Gulch, Freshwater and portions of Snog, a well timed, thoughtful strategic treesit with strong community support can change the fate of a forest. However, tree sitting is just one of many tactics. Let’s not limit ourselves. We should never forget the beauty of imagination, the wisdom of strategy and the bite of surprise. The sky’s the limit!”

Running Feet and Roaring Chainsaws in the Mattole – Doctor Zaus (2001)

1990-2010, Blockade/Barricade, Date, Disruptive Spaces, Occupation, Sabotage/Ecotage, Tactics of Disruption, The 'Natural World'

A member of the Mattole Forest Defenders described the group’s actions against logging plans to cut down the remaining Northern California coastal old-growth Douglas fir trees. Blockade structures were built, trees were occupied, and reinforcements from the Mattole Forest Defenders were convoked. The piece concluded with a call to action to help defend what remains of the forest.

Declaration of Rebellion – Extinction Rebellion UK (n.d.)

Capitalism, Defining the Enemy, Disruptive Spaces, Institutions, Tactics of Disruption

Extinction Rebellion UK published a statement detailing their rebellion against the government, and declaring the nullification of the bonds of the social contract as a result of the government’s failure to directly address the sixth mass extinction event.

“We hereby declare the bonds of the social contract to be null and void, which the government has rendered invalid by its continuing failure to act appropriately. We call upon every principled and peaceful citizen to rise with us.”

FLARE UP! Niger Delta Women Take on Oil Companies – (2002)

1990-2010, Blockade/Barricade, Capitalism, Date, Defining the Enemy, Disruptive Spaces, Indigenous, Occupation, Sabotage/Ecotage, Subjectives of Refusal, Tactics of Disruption, The 'Natural World', The Workplace, Time Interrupted, Women

This article, written by an American journalist under a pseudonym, details the actions taken by indigenous intertribal women of Nigeria against US oil companies ChevronTexaco and Shell. These oil companies, among others, have exploited the oil supply in Nigeria for decades, causing massive environmental degradation and destroying the lands needed for indigenous groups to maintain their livelihoods. Indigenous women of the Urhobo, Itsekiri, Ijaw, Ogoni, and Ilaje tribes united during the summer of 2002 by occupying operational headquarters, barricading the gates, threatening to commit acts of public nudity, as well as seizing control of four oil flow stations. Work was temporarily halted, and the actions taken at the oil flow stations resulted in a ChevronTexaco revenue loss of three million dollars.

“All will not be well for the oil companies in our areas until they start treating us as human beings that deserve a good life.” – IIaje leader B.I. Ugbasanin

Katuah Earth First! Cashes in Willamette’s Chips – John Johnson and Rich Spencer (1999)

1990-2010, Blockade/Barricade, Capitalism, Date, Defining the Enemy, Disruptive Spaces, Occupation, Tactics of Disruption, The 'Natural World'

This article describes the tactics used by activists of Katuah Earth First! And EarthCulture to stop the continued chipping of native forests in the Southeast. Activists targeted the Willamette Industries’ Broad River chip mill in Union Mills, North Carolina by blockading the front gate and scaling the facility’s 70-foot log crane to deploy a banner stating, “Willamette Destroys Our Jobs, Forests, and Rivers.”

“Katuah EF! and EarthCulture will hold these corporate carpetbaggers accountable for their Earth-raping business. We will draw strength and inspiration from the mountains, rivers and forests to carry the struggle for the Earth forward!”

401 Animals from the University of Iowa Liberated – Communiqué from ALF Activists (2004)

1990-2010, Date, Disruptive Spaces, Sabotage/Ecotage, Tactics of Disruption, The Workplace

A communiqué from ALF activists describes the raid they conducted on the laboratories of the University of Iowa Psychology Department. All equipment and documents pertaining to the work of the vivisectors were destroyed, effectively shutting down the labs, with a total of 401 animals freed from testing. The animals were treated by a veterinarian and placed in homes. An addendum was added with the names and personal information of University of Iowa Psychology Department vivisectors.

Update from the Treetops – (2009)

1990-2010, Capitalism, Date, Defining the Enemy, Disruptive Spaces, Occupation, Tactics of Disruption, The 'Natural World'

The article, written by an unnamed farmer participating in the occupation, describes the “tree-village” that has formed in a Humboldt County, California forest. The logging company Green Diamond has permits to destroy both the rare grove of residual Old-Growth Redwoods and the population of endangered Northern Spotted Owls in the forest. Those within the tree-village have tied over 40 trees together with rope, forming a defense network, and have called others to join the “tree-village,” and tackle imminent threats.

“…they have not backed off logging the grove we occupy, and we will continue to stand with this forest and it’s inhabitants until the threat is lifted.”

OCCUPY EVERYTHING!: California Valley Miwok Tribe Occupies Foreclosed House in Stockton – Modesto Anarcho (2009)

1990-2010, Date, Indigenous, Occupation, Subjectives of Refusal, Tactics of Disruption, We're Not Paying That

An interview with the California Valley Miwok Tribe in response to their occupation of their foreclosed home in Stockton, California. The group had planned to stand their ground and barricade themselves in the house until their problems were addressed by the Department of the Interior.

“We had to make our point clear that we were no longer going to be pushed out and forgotten like yesterday’s trash! We are human beings. We are not just names and/or numbers on a piece of paper.” 

Direct Action! 101: A Primer – El Lobo Solo (n.d.)

Blockade/Barricade, Disruptive Spaces, Institutions, Occupation, Sabotage/Ecotage, Tactics of Disruption, The 'Natural World'

This undated, pseudonymous piece describes how Earth First! employs direct action methods such as civil disobedience and social arrest against those harming the earth. The article teaches how to effectively carry out demonstrations, civil disobedience, and other strategies necessary to achieve an intended goal.

“EARTH FIRST! is defined by its actions, the purpose of which is to: -ACTUALLY HALT THE DESTRUCTION, force the companies to quit, the Forest Dis-Service to withdraw its sale, the bulldozers to halt. Our primary purpose is to personally intercede, to “stop the bleeding.”
The most “symbolic” action stops the saws, and leaves the log-trucks lined-up empty.”

“A clear message to the Earth rapists: No more “business as usual.””

We Are at the White House: No Compromises, No Excuses Biden – Sunrise Movement (2021)

2011-Present, Blockade/Barricade, Date, Disruptive Spaces, Occupation, Tactics of Disruption, The 'Natural World'

A statement by the Sunrise Movement describing the 500 individuals of the organization who occupied every entrance of the White House and the homes of two important senators in 2021, staging a sit-in to demand the Biden Administration pass an American Jobs Plan that addresses bold solutions to the rising climate crisis.

“So we will sit here until you commit to the side of climate justice, commit to an American Jobs Plan written with bold ambition against the climate crisis including a Civilian Climate Corps, and pass it through reconciliation immediately–or you will not pass a bill at all.”

Nuclear Waste Shipment Meets Massive Resistance in Germany – Skyler Simmons (2006)

1990-2010, Blockade/Barricade, Date, Disruptive Spaces, Occupation, Tactics of Disruption, The 'Natural World'

An article, found in the January-February 2007 issue of the Earth First! Journal, details the diversity of tactics French and German farmers, students, environmental activists, and anarchists, among others took in November of 2006 in an attempt to shut down a nuclear waste shipment traveling between the two countries. Sit-ins, erections of burning barricades, parked tractors in the path of the train were some of the tactics employed, in addition to actions taken to derail the police guarding the route, ultimately delaying the shipment and increasing nuclear waste transportation costs.