Minds of the Movement

An ICNC blog on the people and power of civil resistance

Movement Commentary

Articles

“Vala, Ljeposava”: Organizing and Nonviolent Action against Mistreatment of Women in the Balkans

Last November, Montenegrin politician Dritan Abazovic publicly commented that female politicians and women in general should stay out of negotiations to form a new government so that they are not overburdened with complicated political matters. The statement provoked major backlash in Montenegro, and two female activists, known as Jeka and Joka, using the pseudonym Ljeposava, decided it was time for women to take things into their own hands. […]

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Ideas & Trends

Start Where You Are: Addressing Four Common Questions about Civil Resistance Training

Training activists is now widely considered a foundational movement activity. But what about implementation? If you don’t yet have a movement, or your movement lacks the capacity to hold workshops, where and how do you start to apply this insight?

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Ideas & Trends

We Know We Need Civil Resistance Training. Now Where Do We Start?

“In the face of rising authoritarianism, people worldwide are increasingly turning to civil resistance to fight for their rights. This is an empowering choice, but it can also feel overwhelming for those involved. When people who seek to build or maintain a movement, the first big question is often: Where and how should we start? […]”

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Movement Commentary

Revealing Hidden Injustices: The Filipino Struggle against U.S. Military Presence

“The September 2020 pardon of U.S. Marine Joseph Scott Pemberton for the killing of a young Filipina transgender woman, Jennifer Laude, served as a public reminder that a U.S. military presence remains in the Philippines years after the last actual U.S. base was closed in 1992. Protests against the killing, led by local LGBTQ+ and women’s rights groups, erupted in the aftermath of both the original crime in 2014 and Pemberton’s recent pardon. The movement, known as Scrap the VFA!, provides lessons for other nonviolent movements, particularly those with less visible or moving targets (such as financial corruption). […]”

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Ideas & Trends

Przekształcanie sprzeciwu nielicznych w opór wielu

Podczas wielu moich spotkań z ludźmi z całego świata, wielokrotnie zadawano mi pytanie, jak można doprowadzić do masowej mobilizacji obywateli w społeczeństwie, które jest zdemobilizowane? Innymi słowy, w jaki sposób przekształcić sprzeciw niewielkiej grupy w opór wielu? Pytanie to często wynika z frustracji aktywistów wywołanej istniejącą ich zdaniem apatią ogółu, […]

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Movement Commentary

From Hope to Despair: One Year After Lebanon’s October Revolution

Exactly one year ago, Lebanese took to the streets in massive rallies under the renowned slogan kilon yaani kilon (“all means all”), denouncing the country’s corrupt oligarchy. These unprecedented protests were leaderless and decentralized, both in urban and rural areas, and carried a message of hope and unity that condemned the sectarian and divisive agenda of the ruling class. Commentators coined the term “October Revolution” to define these protests, giving the impression that it would result in a transition of power. […]

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Movement Commentary

Une banderole dans un cercueil : La lutte nonviolente contre l’autoritarisme à Djibouti

“Dans notre culture, le passage d’un cercueil en ville, à pied ou à véhicule, est toujours synonyme d’une immobilisation des passants à piétons et de véhicules en circulation qui doivent absolument observer un moment de silence et des prières à la mémoire des personnes décédées et transportées en cercueil. Ce qui était le cas pour notre cercueil. Face à des gens immobilisés et assez nombreux le long de la rue, nos activistes déposent « le corps sans vie » et disparaissent dans la nature comme un éclair. La rue est en émoi ! Du jamais vu ! Est-ce un crime ? Pourquoi aurait-on déposé le cercueil et la personne décédée en plein milieu de la rue ? […]”

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Movement Commentary

A Banner in a Coffin: Djibouti’s Nonviolent Struggle against Authoritarianism

In our culture, when a coffin is carried down the street, pedestrians and vehicles must come to a halt to observe a moment of silence in memory of the deceased being carried. In this case, it was our coffin. In the middle of a large, motionless crowd, our activists laid down the coffin and then dispersed in a flash. The street erupted in turmoil! No one had never seen anything like it before! Had a crime been committed? Why would a coffin be placed in the middle of the street? All of these questions aroused emotion, confusion and commotion at the scene of action. […]

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Movement Commentary

Pour les membres des forces de sécurité : un guide de soutien aux mouvements pro-démocratie

Quand des citoyens s’engagent dans la résistance civile pour défendre la démocratie et lutter contre un régime autoritaire, comment les forces de l’ordre, les membres de la sécurité intérieure, les services de renseignement et l’armée du pays peuvent les aider ? En Biélorussie, certains membres des forces de sécurité viennent de jeter publiquement leurs cartes d’identité militaires et leurs uniformes à la poubelle pour protester contre le dictateur au pouvoir depuis plusieurs décennies. […]

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Movement Commentary

For Members of Security Forces: A Guide to Supporting Pro-Democracy Movements

Let’s say that you serve in the police, interior security, intelligence services, or the military. A ruler at the helm orders you to repress a pro-democracy movement and its unarmed people who are going out to protest against him. You do not agree with what the ruler and his political sycophants expect from you. Deep down, you know you would be no longer serving the country and its people if you were to follow those orders. You are looking for ideas on how to delay, derail, or go against the ruler’s orders to suppress the nonviolent movement. You are not alone. […]

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