Each week, ICNC features 5-10 news stories from around the world related to nonviolent conflict. These stories are shared with you via our website, our News Digest, Facebook, and/or Twitter. Featured news stories are ones that can stimulate conversation about the phenomena of nonviolent conflict and civil resistance. ICNC does not necessarily endorse any of the views expressed in these articles or any comments left by visitors to our site. Featured articles remain posted for 30 days, after which time they can be found by searching our nonviolent conflict news database.
Michael Forsythe, NY Times, March 4, 2014
“We are prepared to go to jail. We are not going to avoid police arrest. We are not going to seek bail in the police station after we are detained. We are not going to defend any charges against us. We are not going to seek mitigation of sentences. And not only me, there are many other people who are going to crowd the prison. When Hong Kong has become so unjust, the prison has become a place of justice for us, which was said by the famous American philosopher Thoreau. He said in an unjust place the only place for justice is the jail.”
Carmen Fishwick, The Guardian, March 4, 2014
“If until recently the southeastern regions were not fully satisfied with the new government, they are now unified against the new aggressor, Russia. Mass protests against Russian occupation took place in many Ukrainian cities over the weekend. Flowers, wreaths and candles fill Maidan and the adjacent streets where the mass killing of protesters took place. And the death toll continues to rise as more Ukrainians die in hospitals of gun wounds. No one is ready to leave Independence Square yet, until the new government demonstrates achievements, until justice is served to ex-politicians and police, and until there is real peace in the country.
Baktybek Beshimov and Ryskeldi Satke, The Diplomat, March 3, 2014
Kyrgyzstan was once known for its Tulip Revolution in 2005. Protests in Kyrgyzstan are commonplace, with 782 in 2013 alone, a staggering number for a tiny republic. But the most volatile part of the country remains the South, where large-scale ethnic conflict exploded in the summer of 2010. What has taken place in the Ukraine may perhaps embolden factions of the Kyrgyz opposition to move against President Almazbek Atambayev and what they see as his excessively pro-Russia policy.
Leila Nachawati Rego, Global Voices, March 3, 2014
From the beginning of the uprising, it was clear from the persecution of Syrian musicians, poets, and artists that one of the main targets of the regime would be Syria's budding civic movement. Creative mobilizations of all kinds, including sit-ins, civil disobedience campaigns, banners, cartoons, graffiti, and poetry, gained momentum in public spaces as well as online. The wall of fear and silence that took decades to build was broken in a matter of weeks, even as the regime displayed unprecedented brutality against peaceful dissent. Music, with its mobilizing and uplifting power, was at the core of the civic movement, increasingly difficult to silence.
Peter Ackerman, Maciej Bartkowski, and Jack Duvall, openDemocracy, March 3, 2014
In terms of the fundamental dynamic of how civil resistance can shred the legitimacy of an abusive government and then induce defections from its own enforcers and supporters, there is no serious discrepancy between the narrative of the collapse of the power of Victor Yanukoyvch in 2014 and the fall of Ferdinand Marcos in the Philippines in 1986, Gen. Augusto Pinochet in Chile in 1988, the communist politburo in Czechoslovakia in 1989, Suharto in Indonesia in 1998, Milosevic in Serbia in 2000, or Mubarak in Egypt in 2011.
Timothy Snyder, NY Review of Books, March 1, 2014
Whatever course the Russian intervention may take, it is not an attempt to stop a fascist coup, since nothing of the kind has taken place. What has taken place is a popular revolution, with all of the messiness, confusion, and opposition that entails. The young leaders of the Maidan, some of them radical leftists, have risked their lives to oppose a regime that represented, at an extreme, the inequalities that we criticize at home. They have an experience of revolution that we do not. It is possible that a Russian attack on Ukraine will provoke a strong nationalist reaction. If this does happen, we should see events for what they are: an unprovoked attack by one nation upon the sovereign territory of another.
Chris Gentilviso, The Huffington Post, February 28, 2014
99Rise co-founder Kai Newkirk discusses his role in the first disruption of a Supreme Court argument session in more than seven years. "We wanted to show the court and, more importantly, the people of our country that we're not going to sit silently." Part of Newkirk's protest footage appeared to come from the court's October argument on the McCutcheon v. FEC case, which challenges the constitutionality of limits an individual can contribute to federal candidates and parties.
Arzu Geybulla, Meydan TV, February 27, 2014
The Gezi Park protest showed the side of Turkey many thought was forgotten - popular dissent, unity, and solidarity. For the first time in years in a country of some seventy million, people rose against their government and the gripping authority of the ruling Justice and Development party and its leader, the Prime Minister Erdogan. Then Turkey witnessed a mass corruption scandal in December, which involved many of the ruling party ministers. As a result the new internet law should come as no surprise in a government’s attempt to prevent any future such challenges.
David M. Herszenhorn, NY Times, February 27, 2014
Oleh Musiy, a prominent doctor who last week coordinated the improvised field hospitals that treated wounded and dying protesters during clashes with the police, is now the health minister of Ukraine, a nation of 46 million people. Dmytro Bulatov, the leader of a group that organized caravans of cars to carry out protests outside government buildings and the homes of some senior officials, is now minister of youth and sports. Yevhen Nyschuk, an actor who became more famous as the M.C. on stage in Independence Square, a sort of Ryan Seacrest of the Ukrainian civic uprising, is culture minister.
James Walsh and Philippa Law, The Guardian, February 27, 2014
We hear from Venezuelans who did not take part in the recent anti-government demonstrations. “I am in an opposition neighborhood that has barricaded itself off from the city…Today the protest leaders did allow the municipal trash trucks in to take out two weeks’ worth of trash that was making the place unbearable…There is resentment growing among residents against the protests.” “You think from your own reality without realizing that today, the popular (poor) sectors have direct access to the government. We are not in opposition, as before, but are constituent power…for the first time in my long life my opinion is heard by those in government.”