"Unthinking respect for authority is the greatest enemy of truth."

Welcome to Infoshop News
Monday, September 01 2014 @ 04:00 PM CDT

An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings

News ArchiveIt has come to my attention in the past few weeks both through my involvement with the Resist! Collective, as well as by the insistent emails from friends, that there has been quite a bit of talk circulating since the close of the Green Scare hearings in Eugene at the beginning of June. Some time ago, I made promises to post a statement at the conclusion of those hearings, and yet it has been more than a month since my return from Eugene. It has come to my attention in the past few weeks both through my involvement with the Resist! Collective, as well as by the insistent emails from friends, that there has been quite a bit of talk circulating since the close of the Green Scare hearings in Eugene at the beginning of June. Some time ago, I made promises to post a statement at the conclusion of those hearings, and yet it has been more than a month since my return from Eugene. Unfortunately, my silence has only allowed the critical voices to grow and the misinformation about Darren to spread. Part of my reticence in writing comes from a fear of provoking more backlash against myself or others, but this of course is not all. Pride, resentment and anger have all played into my unwillingness to speak openly in the aftermath of the court hearings, a childish resistance which has no place in the building of honest and ethical community.

For those of you who do not know me, I have run Darren Thurston’s support committee and website since his arrest in December 2005, and have a close association with some others indicted in the Green Scare case including Chelsea, Joe and Rebecca. This is only one facet of my long history of activism, but it is that which is most salient to this letter. Since his decision to co-operate with the US Government’s investigation into the ALF/ELF early last summer, there have been a lot of allegations made about Darren and others which are either untrue or overblown in order to paint a particular picture. I would like to start here by explaining the truth as I have understood it as a participant and supporter in this case, then briefly talk about the personal effects of this situation, and also the greater ethics of our political movements. A dissertation this is not, I will try to be brief but thorough.

As many of you reading know, Darren decided to co-operate with the FBI investigation into his case in May of 2006 after being incarcerated for almost six months. He based his decision on the information that besides his charges in Oregon he would face additional charges in California of handling an incendiary device (albeit by conspiracy) at the Lichtfield action, which would carry a *mandatory minimum* sentence of 30 years on top of the 5-10 he was already facing. He was further made aware of the fact that three people with whom he had done the Lichtfield action had already agreed to testify against him, and that he would face the further charges in California alone (the other three indicted separately in Lichtfield were Rebecca Rubin, Joe Dibbee and Justin Solondz - all currently missing and considered fugitives by the US Government).

To put it simply, Darren was facing 35 years to life in prison and was set up for his most contentious trial entirely alone with an array of people lined up to testify against him. He had no way of winning his case, and he knew it. What he also knew when he co-operated was that eight other people had already provided information before him and so he would be providing very little (if any) new information. In this context he agreed to meet with the FBI and the US prosecutor's office. After a lifetime of eschewing the state and decrying movement “snitches”, he did not take this decision lightly. But it is true that in making his plea agreement Darren met with the FBI and prosecutors on several occasions for debriefing sessions during which he gave information about his action at Lichtfield, additional sites he reconnoitered with others and described the activities he and Chelsea engaged in during their years underground together (2002-2005). And it is also true that he named some of the people he worked with - all of whom were already known to the FBI and most of whom were in custody.

There are two notable exceptions to this: First the case of Joe and Rebecca who are still fugitive. While Darren named names in their case, it was after receiving proof that Joe and Rebecca had already been named by a number of people, and with the sense he would not be providing any new information. By this point, Joe and Rebecca were in as much legal trouble as Darren, and there was little he could do to change that. We can only presume they have stayed fugitive all this time with the intention of not being found. The other exception involves an ex-girlfriend of Darren's who he was involved in an aborted action with in 1997 and which the FBI was already aware of (the action was terminated due to FBI surveillance). Again, Darren made these statements with the knowledge that the statute of limitations on that crime had run out and his friend could no longer be charged for her involvement.

I do not provide these exceptions as an excuse, but to try to dispel the myth that Darren was indiscriminately naming names and providing a myriad of new information. The fact is, almost all of the new information Darren provided pertained only to his own actions and those which Chelsea had already copped to in her own debriefing process.

And to be clear, this is not because Darren was being disingenuous with the FBI but because his connections to this case were peripheral at best. Between the years of 1996 and 2001 when these actions were being committed in the US, Darren was primarily in Canada and facing his own charges (1998-2001). There has been a rumour going around that Darren got the least amount of time because he co-operated the most, which is simply not the case. Darren got the least amount of time because in this particular conspiracy the US prosecution considered him only a minor player. He was involved in a single action in 2001, and the entirety of his crime consisted of cutting fences to free wild horses while others enacted the arson committed at the site. Compare that to others involved in multiple actions/arsons over several years. If you look at this case closely you will note that two of the people who co-operated the earliest (besides Jake Ferguson) - Stan and Kevin are also doing the most significant time (13 and 12 years respectively) - so it's pretty clear the prosecution didn't reward co-operation that much.

Another circulating rumour is that Darren has agreed to testify against others. While it is theoretically true that at some point he may have been called to testify against Joe and Rebecca, it is not true he can be compelled to testify against anyone at this point. Darren has now been sentenced and that sentence is not contingent on further co-operation. Additionally, Darren's co-operation led to no new indictments as he put forward no new names, nor was anyone else pressured to co-operate based on his decision. As to why Darren doesn't unseal his plea agreement at this point (redacted by the US prosecuting attorney as per normal procedure), it seems a moot point to go through another court application process with a lawyer who is no longer being paid for by the government when all relevant information has already been presented in open court or posted on Portland Indymedia.

Now. I think that addresses a lot of the accusations and rumours. A few more points on Darren before I move to discussing the motivations of the state and the responses of the radical movement.

Some of you know the history of Darren’s activism, but for those of you who don’t I note it for the sake of understanding why I think we need to re-evaluate the "movement" position on people caught in these complex legal situations. For over two decades (since his early teens) Darren has been a committed activist to animal, earth and human rights. First imprisoned from 1992-94 for liberating cats slated for experimentation at a University of Alberta laboratory, Darren has put his beliefs into action over and over again. The list of organizations Darren has been involved in or helped to start are numerous and include BearWatch, the Coalition for Animal Liberation, Friends of the Elaho, TAO Communications, the Victory Project, the Compassion Club, the Animal Liberation Front, the Earth Liberation Front, and many others. Darren has now acknowledged his involvement in producing The Final Nail - the seminal work in North America on shutting down fur farms – a major contributor to putting many mink farms out of business in the US in the 1990s. He additionally ran and produced many security websites and manuals for activists as well as contributing to other direct action manuals, workshops and conferences.

I do not record this here because Darren's activist pedigree is greater than mine or anyone else's but as a reminder that for two decades Darren gave almost the whole of himself to his beliefs and has faced prison on countless occasions as a result. To disregard all of this in a black and white maneuver now seems a tad too convenient, particularly if we don't acknowledge his contributions to the struggle.

Although movement radicals have focused a lot on the particulars of what each individual has said or done in this situation, the FBI has taken a much more global view of the case. Their motivation from the beginning and straight through has been to "smash the network of the ELF and ALF in North America," which they have made clear both in private debriefing sessions as well as in court filings. Smashing the network means a lot more than putting a few people in jail for long prison sentences (in fact, it means not putting people in jail for long sentences lest movement martyrs be created). Smashing the network relies on a number of things:

* Discrediting its leaders (they consider Darren a leader of the ALF/ELF, recognizing that he was well respected by others in the underground and that he often played a mediating role in disputes. In court filings the FBI actually refers to him as the Godfather of the ALF).
* Fostering distrust among those who might be thinking of re-starting such a group (getting lovers or partners to turn information on each other, for example. Who can you trust if not your Winston or Julia? A page from 1984 if there ever was one).
* Handing out sentences that are stiff enough to take years out of your life (deterrent) but do not create a sense of injustice among the general populace (making martyrs). Interesting that the US government pursued the terrorism enhancement against each of these people but declined to seek increases in sentencing. Had they done so, the outcry over what was happening would have been much more widespread or at least had longer legs.

So, the US Prosecutor in Darren's case got up in court and talked about Darren's extensive co-operation, how much information he had given, and how helpful he had been. Really? The prosecutor knew as well as Darren did that the information Darren provided was largely centered only on himself. Why would the prosecutor recommend Darren be recognized for that which he did not do in the main? Because they admire him secretly? Not likely. The prosecution was all too happy to applaud Darren in public because this commendation put a black mark on him (Darren as leader, Darren as universally respected in the ALF/ELF) like nothing else could have. They were happy to give him a lesser sentence if it meant people distrusted him more, and they were only too glad to talk about how helpful he had been if it meant Darren could never return as a leader in the direct action underground.

And so it has worked, this strategy, and the movement has by and large accepted everything the government has said about our friends - even the things we know to be untrue (for example, the US prosecution claimed in court that Darren ran the ALF Press Office for a number of years – which the FBI knows to be a falsehood - but it was convenient in painting the picture of Darren as leader. “See. Even your leaders will sell you out in the end”). And I acknowledge there has been no reason for people to disbelieve statements put out by the government, as we have not provided a counter to them. Trapped inside a legal process, we have been muzzled until its completion, for this is the reality when your life is hanging in legal limbo. I recognize people have been angry about this silence on my part, a certain amount of which was unavoidable - but I could have been more responsive to people's need for information after the hearings and I wasn't. For that I do apologize and my atonement is found in writing this long overdue letter.

So where does this leave us as radicals? And where does it leave me vis a vis my own activist commitments and motivations? I suppose I will answer this second question by acknowledging that if you had asked me two years ago about those who co-operate in cases like this I would have said - no way, never, no support, I would never… etc. Four years ago this strength of adherence was even more extreme, and while I never made the step of lighting a match, I traveled in circles that overlapped with those who did, and I was vocal in my support for them (as many radicals were at that time).

Even before the arrests I had begun my long move away from the politics of destruction. I was questioning the tactics and their efficacy given the current state of affairs in North America, questioning the personal damage I saw in my friends as a result of their double lives, and trying to assess whether we were giving up our true humanity in cutting ourselves off so much. What kind of a world could we possibly create from that? It was not so much a shift to pacifism as it was a re-evaluation of what was really possible and legitimate within our current context.

So when the FBI knocked on doors across the US on December 7, 2005, I was already far away from the politics - and whatever doubts I had about distancing myself were shrunk into nothing at my first realization of what was happening. In those first few days, terrorized by the unfolding
events, the only thing I could hold onto was my love for Darren and for Joe and for Rebecca and for Chelsea. And even as I write this letter, tears come to me as I am full of the things I shared with these friends over so many years of struggle. I miss them dearly, and I miss them daily - the camaraderie, the camping trips, the river swims, our shared angst about the world.

And so my response throughout this case has been motivated by this love and connection. I have continued to support Darren and Chelsea even though they did something that in "our" community would never fly – co-operating with the state's investigation into them and others. Twenty months of weekly phone calls, two road trips to Oregon, and several dozen letters later I am honest in saying I have no regrets about my decisions. Particularly since witnessing the vitriolic and black nastiness coming out of particular direct action quarters (suggesting that prison rape and beatings is what anyone deserves is unacceptable on so many levels). I suppose we need to ask ourselves several questions about what kind of a movement we want to build from here on out - is it one based on accusations dressed as ethics, judgment and recriminations, valour-based-on-law-breaking, and self-denial (to choose a life in prison over co-operation is to deny a very deep biological need for freedom)? Or is it some other set of values?

I can't speak to how anyone else will come out of this chapter in activism, but I know I have had to reach very far outside of myself to make any sense of these questions. It is perhaps trite to say, but I am no longer interested in activist involvements shaped by misplaced anger or a morality based on "what *I* would do". A sense of injustice, of course. A drive towards making social and ecological improvements, no doubt. A grasp of the tools which work best in the moment, for sure. But more it is my aspiration to act out of love for the world and out of forgiveness for myself and others in every way that I can. This is so much harder for me to do than how I was. I have always found it much easier to be acerbic, cynical and angry – and I am not always successful in the daily practice of refashioning myself otherwise.

I have been very challenged lately in trying to find forgiveness for some participants in Darren's case, and also for those who have spoken behind our backs without finding the courage to speak directly to me or to him. But as difficult as that is, it is still my work to do. Which does not mean that I expect the same in return, or that I will ever be re-admitted into certain quadrants of the "movement". This is not something that hurts more than my pride - as those friends of mine who were closest remain my friends unreservedly - and my loss of access in radical circles is primarily about letting go of the past more than wanting to retain it.

And so to my fellow radicals – I suppose we each have to ask ourselves would any of us have made a different decision given the facts laid out above? And if we are even slightly hesitant in our answer of yes, then who are we to judge another in difficult circumstances? Do we want a movement based on martyrdom? Do we want to participate in the exclusionary silencing occurring right now as people like myself try to bring these ethical questions out into community only to be met by stone walls? Is this the movement we want to build - a mob who passes judgment without trial and who enforces a single morality that is not up for discussion or debate?

I recognize the questions above are somewhat polemic in nature, certainly positional and designed to provoke; but I am not objective at all here - and more than that - I believe that these words form a truth important in the self-reflections of radicals, and the way forward to a better world. Which is something that I pose to you is worth fighting for. Or at least fighting over.

I do not provide this letter in order to evoke tiny violins or sympathetic tears, but because I have thought much on this subject in the past few weeks and have finally come to a place where I can say it all and honestly. I hope this is the spirit in which you take what I have said above, that I am not trying to obfuscate or cajole, but bring to the light what I believe to be true about what this experience has so far been. For better analysis, understanding and stronger community – these words are what stand for me.

I am in eternal gratitude for those who struggle, those who support and those who work towards a better world. You are in my heart and in my circle.

Megan
Darren Thurston Support Ctte.

Share
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
  • Ask
  • Kirtsy
  • LinkedIn
  • Digg
  • Twitter
  • SlashDot
  • Reddit
  • MySpace
  • Fark
  • Del.icio.us
  • Blogmarks
  • Yahoo Buzz
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings | 101 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: talonx on Thursday, July 26 2007 @ 04:13 PM CDT
...Further, I think that we should be criticising those willing to trust anything that has come out of the courts as truth. The U.S. govt. has a vested interest in destroying this threat to its life sciences initiative(which just so happens to coinicide with the begining of the green-scare).

Though on some fronts, I disagree with targets, so-called primitivist theory, or the essentialism of lashing out at everything that appears to 'violate' nature. And on some fronts still I disagree with tactics. I think it is vastly important to remain honest with ourselves and each other, even with the threat of world governments becoming more and more fascist.

They best place to hide is in the open, and we can't hide in the open if we have our backs turned on each other. The best way to resolve any problem is conversation, not isolation.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: ThePeoples Elbow on Friday, July 27 2007 @ 11:40 AM CDT
Personally I'm nauseated and disgusted after reading this. For me this type of compromise is a slippery slope for which there is no turning back, no forgiveness, no redemption. If I take anything from all this it will be a strengthened resolve to continue my support for the non cooperating defendants. My own personal problems seem so petty in the face of all they have and gone through and continue to go though. I will NEVER forget who put them there.

Solidarity is A Weapon,
Steve
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: Why on Friday, July 27 2007 @ 12:25 PM CDT
I personally feel that the damage that these people caused to the government more than vindicates their weaknesses when confronted with life sentences. Especially when it comes to people that they're not exactly friends with, whom they only met whenever they'd do the actions that they did.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: Why on Friday, July 27 2007 @ 12:38 PM CDT
BTW, I should point out that the "non cooperating defendants" plea deals saved the state millions and millions of dollars. While I understand that their pleas were yet another example of human weakness, it's a shame that they didn't make the state pay its dues, especially since, as the trial ran out, the "cooperating defendants" could've easily changed their confessions.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: talonx on Saturday, July 28 2007 @ 10:55 AM CDT
When governments move to drop heads everyone is a victim. If you feel the need to blame those victimized by the U.S. government that is indeed your business. I guess what I don't really understand is this extreme of freedom of association that some of us tout, the "fuck um if they fuck up" mentality--precisely the same mentality fueling things like capital punishment and the like.

I fully support all those who defend themselves against any hierarchical government.

FURTHER! and I say this with what I believe to be a justified anger. THOSE IN PRISON ARE PUT THEIR BY PEOPLE SERVING THE INTERESTS OF THE US GOVERNMENT, not by so called "informants".

I am not saying we open our arms to those who have aided or helped the US injustice machine run smoothly, I am saying we should look at the bigger picture and realize that those "informants" are essentially still on our side.

I am sorry you are disgusted at the expression of humanistic virtue, moreso, I am sorry that you feel the need to be non-supportive to those who have shown some weakness in the face of a most abominable monster.

Informing is wrong, but ostricizing, and shunning is even worse, especially at times when a little bit support can go along way in showing our unity as a diverse set of ideaologues(positive ones) that are willing to work together even with those violating our most "holy and sacred" principles by their own mistake.

with solidarity.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: Anonymous on Saturday, July 28 2007 @ 09:04 PM CDT
your framing of the ELF as part of "so-called primitivist theory" really irks me. does caring about the welfare of the planet make you a primitivist? i care about the welfare of the planet. i am not a primitivist. please explain.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: femin(A)zi on Saturday, July 28 2007 @ 12:53 PM CDT
what i am reading makes me sick to my stomach.

"we can't hide in the open if we have our backs turned on each other."

hmmm, so turning people in to the feds is somehow NOT turning your back on people? helping the government prosecute people and perhaps send them away for the rest of their lives is noble? anarchist even?

"I personally feel that the damage that these people caused to the government more than vindicates their weaknesses when confronted with life sentences. Especially when it comes to people that they're not exactly friends with, whom they only met whenever they'd do the actions that they did."

but of course! when it really matters, we can throw our politics away and fuck other people over to survive! that's what anarchism is all about!

"it's a shame that they didn't make the state pay its dues, especially since, as the trial ran out, the "cooperating defendants" could've easily changed their confessions."

you're a fucking genius! we should blame the NON-COOPERATING defendants for not going to trial when they had 8 snitches waiting to testify against them! we should really hold THEIR feet to the fire for having the fucking temerity to not sell anyone out, so those who did decide to throw others to the wolves could've had a chance to recant! those non-cooperators really are a danger to our movement.

"FURTHER! and I say this with what I believe to be a justified anger. THOSE IN PRISON ARE PUT THEIR BY PEOPLE SERVING THE INTERESTS OF THE US GOVERNMENT, not by so called "informants"."

really? because without informants, the US government had no case for almost a decade. without informants, not one of the people arrested in operation backfire would have been arrested, not one of them would have been indicted together under an overarching conspiracy, bill rodgers would be alive, jonathan paul, rebecca rubin, joseph dibee, nathan block, brianna waters, and joyanna zacker would never have been arrested several months after december 2005.

THE INFORMANTS in this case are: chelsea gerlach, stanislas meyerhoff, kendell tankersly, kevin tubbs, lacey phillabaum, jen kolar, jacob fergusen, AND DARREN THURSTON. they have decided to help the government prosecute other people, they have named names, they have added to the government's cases, they have turned people in, they have ruined lives, they have looked at the line in the sand and THEY HAVE SIDED WITH THE OPPRESSORS, the EXPLOITERS, the CAPITALISTS, and the STATE.

if they had kept their mouths shut, THE STATE WOULD HAVE HAD NO CASE. bill rodgers WOULD STILL BE ALIVE. SIX MORE PEOPLE would not have become involved in this case, lives ruined, lives wasted.

if anyone wants to fool themselves and claim they had no other choice, then what does it mean for the 4 people (joyanna zacker, nathan block, daniel mcgowan, and jonathan paul) who did not?

what does it mean that brianna waters was visited by the feds and was told she could do this "the easy way or the hard way"? she, a mother of a young child, decided she would fight, she'd maintain her innocence AND her integrity.

what does it mean that jeff hogg decided to go to jail for almost year, losing his job, missing his grandfather's funeral, enduring huge financial hardship, missing his partner, BECAUSE INTEGRITY MEANS MORE THAN SAVING YOUR OWN SKIN.

40 pieces of silver may seem like a good deal, but i know what special ring of hell is reserved for those who betray their comrades.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: veranasi on Saturday, July 28 2007 @ 01:35 PM CDT
I agree with you.

What really boggles me about this affair is the sudden back turning when it came to solidarity, and I think we may have learned a little bit about the the so-called revolution.

We wouldn't be talking about this, if we had our stuff together as a movement, the co-op defendants might not have cooperated.

The resources and solidarity dropped big time in December 2005.
Not that there was a great deal to begin with. Everyone was busy hating everyone and that seems to still stand today. The mass amounts of shit-talking and gossiping that goes on makes security culture look like moot point.

In 2006 I attended a event put on by a black liberation group, who quite literally said the people coop or non-coop weren't real revolutionaries and their whole point was to make themselves feel better about saving trees and rivers rather than real, personal issues that go on everyday in inner city America. This is a criticism I hear frequently about this kind of stuff. I can't even really answer it, I just end up looking like a privileged white kid.

The other criticism I heard was the individuals involved shouldn't have done anything to begin with because there wasn't a real movement. A real movement meaning there wasn't retaliation for the arrests, there had to be fund raising, putting those arrested at near cult status, rather than an already strategically planned response to the arrests.

And then the backlash came. To many, those arrested looked like people having temper tantrums who were screwing things up for the entire environmentalist movement.

So, take that all into consideration, a lack of unified support and people instantly spreading rumors about who is a snitch, you have to ask yourself what you would do. I know I simply wouldn't care and I'd deal with it. For me there is no reason to spill names. And perhaps for you it's the same. But, taking the movement into context, it's hard to say that you might want to risk 30 years for a declining movement torn apart by infighting and shit talking, esp, if your family is involved.

I don't think the coop defendants deserve kudos. And the non-coop defendants deserve our solidarity. What we have to ask is how in the hell did people we felt we trusted end up in a situation where they couldn't?

To be sure, the "snitches" made life hard for many, and the selfish tone they take is despicable. However, being Green identified these days is something of joke to many folks who are supposed to be on our side.

Either way, we have to figure out a way to move forward. It isn't easy being green.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: Admin on Saturday, July 28 2007 @ 08:05 PM CDT
"In 2006 I attended a event put on by a black liberation group, who quite literally said the people coop or non-coop weren't real revolutionaries and their whole point was to make themselves feel better about saving trees and rivers rather than real, personal issues that go on everyday in inner city America."

This sentence doesn't make much sense. Are you talking about cooperating and non-cooperating defendents?

Uh, saving trees and rivers is just as important as the issues affecting inner city America. If the environment goes to shit, then things will be much worse for the inner cities. If a bunch of so-called black revolutionaries said that the rivers and trees aren't important, I'd take the words with a grain of salt. They are probably just angry. Don't take their word for gospel or as en excuse not to do environmental work. Certainly don't feel guilty about being a "white" activist with your own concerns. Get active on the issues that YOU care about. Please don't pick and choose issues based on what you think that some other people think is important.

And go talk to people in the inner city. You'll find that they are interested in a broad range of issues. Improving their neighborhoods is one of their big priorities, because cities always fuck over poor people in urban areas.

Go plant a tree in the city or help somebody clear weeds from some vacant lot.

Chuck
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: veranasi on Saturday, July 28 2007 @ 10:00 PM CDT
Yes, chuck, both kinds of defendants. The conversation was heated, and her point was, "Only African people can save the environment." Which by itself sounds crazy, but the it's part of a larger argument that for the most part, the eco-movement and the anarchist movement is fairly white and privileged. And sure the inner city is interesting. Most people could really give fuck all about a bunch of college educated white folks going to jail when minorities go all the time. I talked to one person facing a life sentence who wanted to know why we couldn't mobilize like we did around Daniel McGowan for anyone else and what privilege that implies. And that's where white guilt comes in. I'm not going to stop supporting what I support for anyone, but dialog is important. This has been kind of a sticking nail for the eco-movement. It becomes even tenser when people start talking about destroying cities and civilization.

My point was about the solidarity factor when it came to the defendants. I still think lack of community may have hurt everyone in the end. It's something for the radical environmental movement to take into consideration. Without a strong sense of community, you can't expect all/most people to put their entire lives on the line. Yes, snitching is bad, but, where was the support network? Are people who choose to have children and families sell outs? How does the eco-community relate to heavily polluted areas like Anacostia? Or to anyone else? A person might engage in an activity under passion but when they come under pressure, things might just collapse.

I don't know what that means for the future. I do think that somehow everyone is going to have to get their act "together."


An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: Admin on Sunday, July 29 2007 @ 12:09 AM CDT

Yes, chuck, both kinds of defendants. The conversation was heated, and her point was, "Only African people can save the environment." Which by itself sounds crazy, but the it's part of a larger argument that for the most part, the eco-movement and the anarchist movement is fairly white and privileged.

That isn't just crazy, it's a stupid and reactionary attitude. It's up to everybody to save the environment. What skin color you happen to have doesn't give you any special inside track on doing environmental work. It's also inane and stupid to argue that the eco- and anarchist movements are white and "privileged." There are all kinds of folks involved in environmental activism and direct action. If you say that the environmental movement is just white, then you are insulting huge numbers of people. The anarchist movement is fairly white, but it is much more diverse than 10 years ago. I don't see how this is relevant. Privilege? I roll my eyes every time that damn word is brought up these days. This is the new buzzword for the political correct types who are mired in identity politics. What use is the word when it is used to dismiss the lives and actions of a set of people based on their skin color? It's news to me that anarchists are "privileged." People who say nonsense like this just don't know any real "privileged" people. I'd like to know where the privilege is in being a working class anarchist who works two jobs, fights with the landlord, and tries to find time to do a little activism.

And sure the inner city is interesting. Most people could really give fuck all about a bunch of college educated white folks going to jail when minorities go all the time.

Most people? I'd like to see the survey that indicates this. I can see how poor people of color in some urban area may not understand why radical environmentalists are going to prison, but does that mean that we should abandon our friends and comrades? I just don't see how this is relevant. I'm going to support any radical who goes to jail (and who doesn't snitch), as well as many other people who are in prison.

I talked to one person facing a life sentence who wanted to know why we couldn't mobilize like we did around Daniel McGowan for anyone else and what privilege that implies. And that's where white guilt comes in. I'm not going to stop supporting what I support for anyone, but dialog is important. This has been kind of a sticking nail for the eco-movement. It becomes even tenser when people start talking about destroying cities and civilization.

Because many of us know Daniel McGowan and the other defendants! Not only are we doing this because we know these people, but because the repression that these comrades are enduring will be turned against us. Anarchists are also very good at doing prison support for non-anarchist prisoners.

Talking about destroying cities or whatever is part of the meta-discussion that the anarchist movement has on various topics. There is no need to stifle our views in order to placate some non-anarchists.

Chuck0

An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: *sabrina* on Sunday, July 29 2007 @ 04:06 AM CDT
It's always the same arguments used over and over to rationalize and justify becoming an informant for the government. One of the main rallying cries has been "PRIVILEGE!"

I am sick to death of people harping on privilege when they've run out of other excuses for the snitches in the Oregon case. Of the cooperating and non-cooperating defendants, they were pretty evenly divided between those whose families had wealth and those whose families did not. They were also pretty evenly divided in terms of community support.

In the end, it's not about money, it's about personal integrity and who we all are as human beings. Shouldn't we embrace such a crazy wingnut concept as judging a person by their actions rather than their family's bank balance?

I talked to one person facing a life sentence who wanted to know why we couldn't mobilize like we did around Daniel McGowan for anyone else and what privilege that implies. And that's where white guilt comes in.

As a white kid who grew up middle class the midwest, my first exposure to thinking about the prison industrial complex and abuses of police/ judicial power was via famous animal rights prisoners. Maybe the all the fuss around folks like Daniel seems disproportionate to the millions of people in America's prison system, but how many people gain an awareness of greater issues via someone like Daniel? How many once- isolated teenage vegans remember looking up to Barry Horne or others who were "disproportionately" rallied around compared to more widespread injustices? Rather than looking at "big name" prisoners as detracting from the greater cause of dismantling all oppression, why not see them as gateways and as attention-getters? Everyone has to start somewhere, and some place in my home town, there's probably a 15- year old who just started reading about environmentalism, and they've really gotten interested in who this Daniel McGowan character is and why he's in prison.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: Admin on Sunday, July 29 2007 @ 10:29 AM CDT
Well said, Sabrina. I come from a white, middle class background in the Midwest, although my family was very working class in some ways. Most of this is irrelevant, because as an *individual* I broke free from this way of life when I was 20-21.

For me, when it came to getting involved in political prisoner support, as a young anarchist it was the case of Leonard Peltier. I met anarchists who were doing support work for Leonard Peltier. I read articles about Leonard Peliter in the anarchist press. In May 1986, I met Arthur Miller, who posts here every so often. At the time, he was organizing material support runs to Big Mountain in Arizona. He also published articles about Leonard Peltier and other prisoners in his magazine Bayou La Rose.

After I was arrested during a protest at the anarchist convention in Chicago, I was part of a plea deal where several of us pled guilty so that charges against other anarchists would be dropped. One of the reasons I did this was so that other anarchists wouldn't be facing legal trouble stemming from the Chicago protests and that would leave them free to do protests at Big Mountain that summer. The plea deal was a headache for me, but it was minor given the bigger picture.

Chuck
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: veranasi on Sunday, July 29 2007 @ 04:31 PM CDT
<i>In the end, it's not about money, it's about personal integrity and who we all are as human beings. Shouldn't we embrace such a crazy wingnut concept as judging a person by their actions rather than their family's bank balance?</i>

I understand your point and I don't necessarily disagree with you. I don't hold the snitches in favor. However, classism and rankism are very real for forms of oppression. I wasn't raised middle class and neither are the folks around me. When it comes to privilege, it's the solid singular point that demonstrates how someone will react to a given situation. I live in the Chesapeake Watershed. The Mid-Atlantic is an environmental catastrophe from clear cuts, to mountain top removal, to BSL labs at Fort Detrick that affect the Potomac, to over-development, to corporate farms that create run off, to the ICC to heavily polluted cities. Having lived here for 15 years, it's easy to gain the respect of locals, even outside the cultural divides of the rural areas and urban areas. The classist and rankist worries are real. Who gets the most support? How do we justify sustaining the rural areas over the urban areas and vice versa. You can be middle class, but most people will probably look at you and wonder what you are about. How can you actually understand what's going on if you won't examine your own privilege and see how that relates the larger world. In rural Pennsylvania there really isn't much time to worry about what's going on in the West Coast, Indiana or the Northeast. So how do we relate? Do we ignore the Mid-Atlantic and push towards the cooler scenes? I'm not saying that support for the non-coop defendants is wrong, but in a larger context, if we can raise money for him, why is it so hard to raise money for someone who is lower class and can't afford a jury trial? And that's how privilege will play out. How can we build solidarity? A trickle down strategy isn't going to help us.

As far as how this relates to snitches, a movement that has it's act together is less likely to have snitches. The idea of integrity becomes more apparent. You have to build solid relationships with everyone and their families. You can't give cold shoulders to less cool people.

Is Rod Coronado a sell out because he's toning down? No. He has to worry about his family. And where does his family lie in our debate? What is their role? Should someone place their loyalties to the most important things in their lives or a schizophrenic movement that is desperately looking for the next hot spot to build something?

A former best friend of mine gave out a roster of names to the government about a year ago. It destroyed the collective house I lived in and the relationship I had with a partner for 7 years. He did it for himself and his family and his job. And that sucks, he destroyed a community that essentially had to start over.

Even so, while the people whose names were spilled are angry, and it's drawn us closer, we have to ask ourselves what profit motive he had to shut up. Where was his role in our "revolution". If he had said nothing, for him there would have been a grand jury investigation, he'd lose his job he'd worked for, and his family would have fallen apart. He acted in what he felt was his best interest. The downfall was how it came down on the rest of us. There's more to this story, but my central point is how we relate to everyone else. If we create a scenario that creates snitches, and we create a scenario that can't build solidarity with communities that are oppressed, we've failed.

Is he paying for his lack of integrity? Sure. Should he have destroyed his life for the sake of everyone else? I think that is a deeper question of individuality and his relationship to the rest of us.

I don't care if you are middle class, the people I live around do, esp. if you are an activist. You are portrayed as someone who isn't really risking anything because you have a mattress to fall back on if you fall. The person who lives in Appalachia or the person living in Southeast DC, does what they can, whatever that may be.

All I want to ask for all of to take a step back, look at what's going on and figure out how to move forward.

We aren't the mafia or the Green Berets and we shouldn't pretend we are.

Yeah, the privilege argument bothers me, too. But it's something that has to be thought about and not simply passed over with a crazy idea that hero worship of Daniel and co. is going change the landscape of the prison-industrial complex.

My argument isn't about what happened after people were arrested, but before.
privilege
Authored by: *sabrina* on Sunday, July 29 2007 @ 09:08 PM CDT
However, classism and rankism are very real for forms of oppression. I wasn't raised middle class and neither are the folks around me. When it comes to privilege, it's the solid singular point that demonstrates how someone will react to a given situation.

Did I say that privilege does not exist? No. I said that it has nothing to do with the Oregon case and who decided to become an informant.

It is vital for people to recognize and examine their own privileges, but to get bogged down in a cycle of reducing everyone to their class background is not only stupid, it's extremely counter-productive. Somehow, I see so many people on the left completely stop growing as activists and stay in a fog of "OMG, haven't you heard about privilege?!", and that's all they seem to contribute to any discussions.

I think a lot of people hate my stance on this matter because it's easy to dismiss something with the magic wand that is accusations of privilege. It's absurd that so many people want *so desperately* for everything to be about how much money one's family has, as opposed to a person's own actions today and now. It's lazy thinking.

(And anyhow, as I said, plenty, if not most, of the snitches in this and other eco/AR cases are white people from middle and upper class backgrounds, which totally voids the argument that only the privileged can afford to not cooperate.)

Further, the way that snitches in this case were, and are still, dealt with entirely based on high school style popularity contests. Darren Thurston was a very famous and well-known animal rights activist in the 90s, therefor, that history has been repeatedly used by people like Megan to justify why it's okay for him to be a snitch. Even in the face of crystal clear evidence that Darren has been cooperating with the state for a year now, his die-hard fan club in the Northwest ("Resist".ca and others in BC) are still going on and on about what Darren was going in *1992*, as though that's some kind of an argument. Is that not "rankism"? If you want to sling phrases around like "hero worship", look no further than Darren Thurston.

Yet, with other snitches in the case, Jen Kolar for example, no one questioned her outing at all. Jen Kolar was outed as a police informant by a newbie activist who had heard from someone who heard from someone who heard from someone that Jen Kolar was *thinking* about cooperating. That piece of un-sourced gossip was all it took for people to condemn Jen, but in the case of a rock star old school activist like Darren, everyone was scrambling to make excuses for him. Is that not "rankism"?

My statements on the Oregon case throughout the last 19 months have consistently ones of annoyance regarding who is outed as a snitch and who is not. It's all come down to popularity, ethics and principals be damned.

Is Rod Coronado a sell out because he's toning down? No. He has to worry about his family. And where does his family lie in our debate? What is their role?

Rod Coronado has nothing to do with the snitching debate. The difference is that Rod decided to step away from radical activism to raise his kids, and a snitch is someone who decided to viciously fuck people over and ruin lives by working for the government. I'm amazed I have to explain that. It's not "leaving the movement" that is the issue. It's about ruining lives and even being responsible for the death of one defendant from suicide.

Is he paying for his lack of integrity? Sure. Should he have destroyed his life for the sake of everyone else?

(Snitch apologists always use this tactic, they try to shift the debate to one where the snitch is seen as the victim.)

Absolutely, with no hesitation, can I say that it is always better to hold your ground in the face of police repression than ruining other people's lives. I don't believe there is any place for any person in any activist scene who adheres to a "me first!" attitude, and displays a willingness to only look out for themselves at the cost of great harm and suffering to others. Again, I'm surprised I have to explain this.

I've said it a thousand times, I'll say it again. At the end of the day, it all comes down to who we are as human beings and whether or not we believe in fucking over other people to benefit ourselves. For some bizarre reason, I find that I have to slowly explain this to a lot of so- called activists, as though I'm the first person who's tried to introduce to them the concept of *not destroying the lives of many to benefit yourself*. If such a basic concept is lost of people, why or how on earth did they become activists?
privilege
Authored by: veranasi on Sunday, July 29 2007 @ 10:16 PM CDT
<i>If such a basic concept is lost of people, why or how on earth did they become activists?</i>

like i said, i don't necessarily disagree with you.

i think the above statement is probably the most important in the whole entire debate.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: *sabrina* on Sunday, July 29 2007 @ 04:15 AM CDT
without informants, not one of the people arrested in operation backfire would have been arrested, not one of them would have been indicted together under an overarching conspiracy, bill rodgers would be alive, jonathan paul, rebecca rubin, joseph dibee, nathan block, brianna waters, and joyanna zacker would never have been arrested several months after december 2005.

I agree with your post, but I just wanted to clarify two small mistakes in that list. Rebecca Rubin has not been arrested, and Joe Dibee was subpoenaed to a Grand Jury right before fleeing the country in December 2005, he was never arrested. They are both currently considered fugitives.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: femin(A)zi on Sunday, July 29 2007 @ 05:12 AM CDT
i meant to say "indicted" after december 2005. because as you pointed out, joseph, josephine, and rebecca have not been found by the government yet.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: honeybaby on Saturday, July 28 2007 @ 02:23 PM CDT
Megan said: "to choose a life in prison over co-operation is to deny a very deep biological need for freedom." The remark is ridiculous considering that the 4 noncooperating co-defendents have a biological need for freedom which was compromised by Darren's cooperation with the state. They all need freedom so why is Darren's freedom more important than that of the people he informed on? Darren decided to help the government put his co-defendents in prison in the hopes that they would be easier on him in return. Now he wants help from the government and from us? From the community who is now less safe and less free as a result of his choices? He's not getting that from me. My friends don't put their needs over everybody else's.
An open letter to all of Megan's open letters
Authored by: *sabrina* on Saturday, July 28 2007 @ 04:58 PM CDT
Megan

How dare you keep harping on your alleged "close association" with Joe
and the other folks Darren snitched on? You're just using their names
and alleged "friendship" in your single-minded rhetoric to try and sound
all fair and balanced. I doubt a one of them would ever forgive you for
becoming the spokesperson for one of the people who ruined their lives.
But those names you love to drop constantly can't tell you what they
think- they're on the run. So you get to use and abuse them for your
political ends because they can't defend themselves. I'm sick of you
using your supposed friendships with people on the run as some kind of
talking point in your analysis. Joe, Rebecca, and Josephine are not
inanimate talking points in some political theory: they are real-life flesh
and blood people who had their lives ruined by Darren and the other
snitches in this case. They, their families, and their real friends have all
suffered enormously because of what Darren and the other snitches did.

You can't have your cake and eat it, too. You can't side with both the
victim and the oppressor. There are times when we just have to PICK
SIDES, but you insist on straddling the fence so you can babble on with
all this pseudo-intellectual crap trying to justify anything and everything
Darren does.

Your words mean nothing, and actions mean everything. Darren's
actions and selfish choices helped ruin many lives and hurt far more
people than you can ever comprehend in your narrow-minded quest to
be Darren's unflinching spokesperson. All your long-winded attempts at
justifying snitching via selective political-speak will never change the fact
that Darren is a traitor who sold out his former friends to save himself a
small amount of prison time.

Darren is no "leader" of anything, that made me laugh. He was an
amazing activist back in his day, but the last time anyone saw him
before his arrest, he stole several thousand dollars from a grassroots
animal rights group and disappeared. The government didn't need to
brand him as untrustworthy to try and sow seeds of dissent in "the
movement": not many people trusted him in the first place.

10, 15 years ago, Darren was an activist. Today, he is a thief and a
traitor. I don't care how much someone accomplished in the early 90s,
if they're set on screwing over activists now, they are not in "my circle".

Sabrina
ELP volunteer and friend of someone snitched on by Darren
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: nostalgia on Monday, July 30 2007 @ 11:10 AM CDT
So only privileged people refuse to inform on their co-conspirators? Are none of you familiar with the "Stop Snitching" DVD? That shit is ignorant as hell, but if nothing else it proves that disenfranchised people of color have no problem refusing to provide the information that can lead to the conviction of a member of their community. I was born and raised in Baltimore, so I must state that I do not condone most of the tactics used in that city to persuade people not to snitch, as they have had a catastrophic effect on some innocent people close to my family. But the point is, snitching is taboo in most crime-related scenes.

Also, why is everyone so damn obsessed with the accusation of privilege? I'm so tired of hearing (all too often) people who are *gasp* white and middle class themselves quickly dismiss the concerns of others as being "privileged" simply because they are too dumb and lazy to deal with a real debate. In activist scenes the aspersion "privilege" is, more often than not, just an ad hominem attack leveled against an individual, generally with the lack of any attempt at the development of a constructive dialouge.

So who is and who isn't privileged in America today? I am a male, working class black anarchist, so I feel that my degree of privilege may be greater than that of a white male felon in mississippi, whose may or may not be more privileged than the square root of pi to the middle class latina documented immigrant power. Is there a way to objectively measure privilege, an unbiased quantification, perhaps an equation? How about X amount of melanin divided by Y annual income minus number of kids to the i don't give a fuck power?

I'm not saying that privilege isn't an important issue, as it is, I'm just saying that it seems that most discussions that use that word are destined for little more than internet shit talking as opposed to open discussion and movement building.

But enough with tangents, back to what's important. Of course the state needs snitches to have successful investigations. There are statistics that demonstrate a positive correlation between the frequency of informants giving reliable information and the clearance rate/rate of conviction in cases. Feds and police practically never have enough evidence to obtain a felony conviction on their own. If informants didn't make or break cases, why would the state offer them milder sentences for providing information on their allied combatants?

So of course throwing your friends to the lions by providing information is, in every way, a reprehensible act. However, I will admit that it is easy for those of us who have never been faced with the possibility of never seeing the mountains, rivers, and beaches again to say that, without a doubt we would never, ever so much as tell the investigators what color hair a defendant has. It's much different when one is really faced with life imprisonment, and talking about what we would do in that situation from the comfort of our homes isn't very constructive or realistic.

It would be great if there was an article about what one can really do in these situations to avoid providing the state with information without completely fucking themselves in the process. Or ways to partially cooperate perhaps by testifying against oneself in exchange for a plea bargain without ever snitching on one's friends. Also, what about plausible deniability? Works for the rich ass white men all the time.

What about saying that you can't possibly provide information because after federal repression in the past radicals who engage in these types of actions never know each others real names and change their appearance so much that you couldn't possibly identify them. Maybe that's too much like James Bond.

I don't know I'm just trying to open a discussion. In the immortal words of skinny suge "stop fucking snitching".
A Statement From the Resist! Collective
Authored by: evh on Monday, July 30 2007 @ 02:59 PM CDT
We've had a few requests, some polite, some offensive, to terminate Darren Thurston's support website and/or to provide an additional statement on our position in terms of continuing to host his support website. Our earlier statement on the issue implied we would provide an explanation for our support at a later date; so here is a response to the termination requests and some people's questions about why we choose to continue to host his site.

Resist.ca hosts a huge variety of sites of often differing political perspectives. The guiding principles of our basis of unity (http://resist.ca/basis) make clear that we value the diversity of ideas and tactics that is reflected in social movements that struggle for these shared principles. Over the years every member of this collective has had to at times put aside both personal and political differences to continue to support such a diverse network.

We very rarely turn away applicants as long they can show even the most basic understanding of and commitment to social justice. We make decisions about terminating an account very rarely, and base those decisions only on whether the user has failed to abide by the member agreement each person enters into before setting up services with us (http://resist.ca/magree).

Darren Thurston's support site does not violate either our basis of unity or member agreement. His community, friends and family use this site to keep up to date on his case and prison situation. We respect the work that is being done by his supporters and respect their right to stand by him during this difficult experience. No matter what we as a collective or as individuals might think about Darren's decisions and actions we see no reason to deny his supporters our services.

We are aware of the accusations made against Darren, claims that his plea bargain and confession were extensive and resulted in a drastically reduced sentence. Darren did not covertly collaborate with the state, provide evidence leading to any new arrests, or strive to deceive his community about the nature of his confession. As part of his plea bargain he confessed his involvement in the actions for which he was arrested. He did so in the face of overwhelming evidence that already confirmed everything he confessed to and in the hope that this would reduce his sentence. The letters we have received make it clear that for some this level of cooperation justifies complete political and personal abandonment. For the members of the Resist collective, we have come to the conclusion that it does not. This may not be the decision that everyone wishes he had made but in hosting his support site we don't feel that we are compromising our general principles, nor creating a situation that threatens the security of our network or violates our member agreement.

We also will continue to host his support site most of all on the principle that we see this kind of divisive in-fighting, demanding that everyone denounce and abandon Darren, as simply playing into a well-documented tactic used by the FBI and other state agencies: to breed distrust and fear, to ensure the division and isolation of our support, to encourage us to blame and fight each other rather than focus on them. It's what motivates them to cut deals and strive for confession or collaboration in political cases. We do not believe that our hosting of Darren's support site damages radical social movements; we do believe that engaging in and validating this kind of divisive in-fighting does.

********

I am a member of the Resist! collective, and I stand behind this statement wholeheartedly. I would like to add a few points of my own that are not necessarily the opinions of the rest of the collective.

First, I do not know Darren Thurston. I have been active in anti-poverty, feminist and queer social justice work for most of my adult life, but I have never moved in earth or animal liberation circles. "Activist cred" means nothing to me.

I believe that characterizing people as cooperating vs. non-cooperating is simplistic and does not take into account the different actions people took (type and timing of the information they gave, for example) and the difference those actions made in the lives of others. I also would like to note that the "non-cooperating" defendants nonetheless entered into agreements that were entirely palatable to the state.

I would have hoped that the statement from Darren's support committee would have been taken in the spirit in which it was intended - to open discussion about incredibly difficult issues that face the Green Scare defendants and the community as a whole. I think it's unfortunate that some people nonetheless cannot speak to these issues without descending to appallingly cheap, self-aggrandizing personal attacks.

I have never stared down the idea of spending the rest of my life in jail, subjected to the torture of the US prison system. I will not sit here in comfort and pretend to know with complete certainty when or if I would break, what compromises I might make. I know what my ideals are, but this rhetoric of the politics of purity is distasteful to me. I want a movement - and a world - based on strength, love, compassion and endurance; not bitterness, superiority, and divisiveness.

That said, I certainly do not condemn people for deciding that their limited support resources should go to the people who refused to name others. What I would ask is that those of us who wish to support the others in prison not be condemned for doing so.

Finally, I would like to make a point that many people seem to have lost sight of: all the Green Scare defendants are political prisoners, and all of them should be freed.
A Statement From the Resist! Collective
Authored by: femin(A)zi on Monday, July 30 2007 @ 10:42 PM CDT
"Darren did not covertly collaborate with the state, provide evidence leading to any new arrests, or strive to deceive his community about the nature of his confession."
i see, so if darren hasn't tried to deceive the community about the nature of his plea agreement or his confession, why did his lawyer practically piss himself trying to get the parts of the plea agreement detailing the nature of darren's plea redacted?
what does darren have to hide?
and unlike the 4 non-cooperating defendants --who have made their ENTIRE plea agreements public-- darren's plea agreement (at least the parts we can get) has him agreeing to the case set out by the government, which says: i did this, he did that, she did this, in this way, with these people, in this place, etc.
this is pretty black and white. this is called snitching.
A Statement From the Resist! Collective
Authored by: evh on Tuesday, July 31 2007 @ 06:48 PM CDT
No. What it means is that you don't know everything that happened, which pisses you off, so you've decided that it means the worst.
A Statement From the Resist! Collective
Authored by: femin(A)zi on Wednesday, August 01 2007 @ 11:42 AM CDT
what pisses me off is Darren's support team trying to obfuscate the fact that Darren is trying to hide the conditions of his cooperation while claiming he is being "open" about things.

what pisses me off is Darren's support team trying to finesse the fact that DARREN COOPERATED WITH THE FBI AGAINST OTHERS TO REDUCE HIS SENTENCE.

what pisses me off is that an organization that is supposedly radical, or that professes some radical intent would actually point fingers at those who wish to secure their communities against those who'd sell them to the feds, as engaging in activity that would destroy radical or anarchist communites-- but NOT Darren, a mother fucking SNITCH!

even YOU, snitch-apologist are not saying HE DID NOT cooperate or give info. YOU are trying to cover-up and smudge and distort what he did. HOW ON EARTH can you claim he did not provide any information they did not already know? HOW CAN YOU KNOW THIS? HOW COULD HE KNOW THIS? how can it possibly be okay to claim he provided info on people who aren't in the country? i hope people aren't caught, but who is to say they never will be?

yeah, i'm pissed, but not because i "don't know" what is in the plea agreement. i'm pissed that people can still think that someone with nothing to hide from the community would go to such great lengths to FUCKING HIDE IT.
A Statement From the Resist! Collective
Authored by: evh on Wednesday, August 01 2007 @ 06:23 PM CDT
He and we would know what information was in possession of the state because all evidence to be adduced at trial (including the confessions) is provided to the defendants as part of the discovery process. This is standard legal procedure. Perhaps you should learn more about it and about other facts of the case before you make any further false accusations.
A Statement From the Resist! Collective
Authored by: femin(A)zi on Thursday, August 02 2007 @ 11:01 AM CDT
funny how you would have access to the discovery, as darren is in prison and the discovery was under various orders which prevented people from disclosing it.

as for darren knowing or not knowing what was being said, you're right insofar that he would have access to the discovery. but does that mean that the government knew everything when he decided to cooperate? are YOU claiming to have read the discovery of what darren has said? or the SEALED parts of his plea agreement? and how is cooperating against people who are considered fugitives by the government okay? it seems pretty dicey to expect they will never be caught (i hope they aren't).

i find it hard to believe in this case, where the non-cooperators have been chastised and lectured to by the judge and court, that the prosecutor would have gone out of his way several times to say that darren has cooperated extensively. to quote from the court notes: "He said that Thurston had provided information about a "whole array of activities and other people", beyond what was called for in this investigation"

i even doubt further that the prosecutor whom Peiffer conferred with in California, a man who is currently prosecuting Eric McDavid, would have agreed with such a "low" sentence if it weren't for the "extensive" cooperation by Thurston. "Peiffer then said the government was asking for Thurston to be sentenced to 37 months, after conferring with the District of California prosecutor in the Ted Kaczinski case who agreed that the sentence, although appearing low, was just in a case where the defendant had cooperated so extensively."

ONCE AGAIN...IF DARREN HAS NOTHING TO HIDE WHY NOT UNSEAL THE REDACTED PLEA AGREEMENT?
A Statement From the Resist! Collective
Authored by: stop snitching on Tuesday, July 31 2007 @ 04:07 PM CDT
How are we supposed to know what Darren told the FBI when he and his lawyer had information on his collaboration sealed from the public? It looks like he did
A Statement From the Resist! Collective
Authored by: evh on Wednesday, August 01 2007 @ 09:42 PM CDT
"stop snitching" wrote: If he didn
A Statement From the Resist! Collective
Authored by: femin(A)zi on Thursday, August 02 2007 @ 11:38 AM CDT
what the non-cooperating witnesses provided:

1. a global resolution to this case without going to trial.

2. an exhaustive listing of illegal activity in which they were personally involved in, exluding any information which may identify other people. some of this involved cases part of operation backfire, some of this involved things not part of operation backfire.

jonathan paul, sadie, exile, and daniel mcgowan are the only 4 people in the 'operation backfire' investigation that did not provide any incriminating information on other people.

once again: stanislas meyerhoff, kendell tankersly, jen kolar, lacey phillabaum, chelsea gerlach, kevin tubbs, jacob ferguson, and DARREN THRUSTON have all cooperated with the federal government by incriminating others. THIS FACT IS NOT UP FOR DEBATE.
A Statement From the Resist! Collective
Authored by: evh on Friday, August 03 2007 @ 07:27 PM CDT
Thank you for making my point for me. There are many reasons for the government to accept a plea agreement that contains no new information.
A Statement From the Resist! Collective
Authored by: femin(A)zi on Saturday, August 04 2007 @ 12:37 AM CDT
your sophistry isn't going to work here-- just like someone trying to cover up the flaws in their logic, you keep trying to clutch onto some straw that will keep the doubt in whoever is foolish enough to believe your bullshit.

you love to mix up the 4 non-cooperating defendants with the toxic water that darren is spilling all over the fucking place, but perhaps you think people are too stupid to realize that only incriminating yourself IS PATENTLY DIFFERENT THAN INCRIMINATING OTHER PEOPLE.

darren's own support team does not deny THAT DARREN COOPERATED WITH THE GOVERNMENT AGAINST OTHERS. what darren's support team is trying to fucking claim is that cooperation was only against people "who aren't in the country" or was "stuff they already knew."

like that makes the bitter pill of betrayal that much easier to swallow? like that makes selling others out to save yourself any better? are you kidding?

in this case A (not incriminating other people) does not mean B (incriminating other people). although the 4 non-cooperating defendants did have to in some way give the government something, that something only affected them. NOT other people.

but perhaps you would now be willing to fucking answer a real question:

IF DARREN HAS NOTHING TO HIDE THAN WHY DID HIS LAWYER GO TO SO MUCH TROUBLE TO SEAL PARTS OF HIS PLEA AGREEMENT?

oh, but can the sophist really answer anything? will we be subjected to more cognitive dissonance by darren's support team claiming black is white, up is down, and incriminating others is the same as not snitching?

An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: *sabrina* on Tuesday, July 31 2007 @ 04:23 PM CDT
On the fallacy of excuse #783 of why it's okay for Darren to be a snitch

Darren's friends have made a thousand excuses in a desperate attempt
to justify his actions, lie on his behalf, and muddy the waters of debate
by trying to create ambiguities where none exist. Truly, the "Resist".ca
(isn't that a bit of a misnomer?) folks are master wordsmiths, and if you
live in a world only consisting and theory and debate, their ideas might
sound plausible.

One popular excuse made by Team Darren is that Darren did not snitch
on anyone new, and that he only snitched on people who are all
currently fugitives.

Now, on the surface, if you know absolutely nothing about anything, that
seems like a sound argument. "I didn't tell them anyone they didn't
already know" has long been the battle cry of the snitch, and even
assuming that it is indeed true, you can't just snitch on select people,
and there is no such thing as "what they already know." If the
government already knew everything and no one could tell them
anything they didn't already know, they wouldn't have wanted any more
informants in the case other than Jake Ferguson.

Let me say again: There is no such thing as just snitching on one person
or a select group of people. Maybe you hate person X, or figure that
person Y is out of the country, so you assume they'll never get caught
and decided to "just" blame the fugitive. But when you snitch on
anyone, for whatever reason, you not only make the government's case
against that person stronger, you make the case against everyone else
stronger.

To give a pared-down version of events (excluding some names for
simplicity):

Jen said she set fire to something, what went down, and that Jonathan,
Joe, and Darren were there.
Darren said he set fire to something, what went down, and that Jen and
Joe were there.

It doesn't matter whether or not Darren wants to think that he was
protecting Jonathan by not naming him as being a part of the action, the
fact that he corroborated the stories of another informant is tacitly
snitching on Jonathan. There is no way to be a "selective snitch", plain
and simple. When you corroborate *ANY* portion of *ANY* other
snitches version of events, you are indeed vouching for their statements
and their truthfulness as people, and you become responsible for
*EVERYTHING* that other snitch has said and *EVERYONE* they have
snitched on. It is not the simple cut-and-dry matter that Megan /
"Resist".ca want everyone to think it is, and it shows either purposeful
lying or ignorance on their part. I'm going with the former, since Darren
and his campaign have been lying for and covering up for Darren and
Chelsea for a long time.

Snitch apologists often argue that the people who were late to snitch are
not the real bad guys, because they "held out" longer, therefor,
allegedly, causing less damage. But that's not true- each snitch is more
responsible than the last, because they are corroborating what all the
other snitches said.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: evh on Wednesday, August 01 2007 @ 06:36 PM CDT
"sabrina" wrote: It doesn't matter whether or not Darren wants to think that he was protecting Jonathan by not naming him as being a part of the action, the fact that he corroborated the stories of another informant is tacitly snitching on Jonathan. There is no way to be a "selective snitch", plain and simple. When you corroborate *ANY* portion of *ANY* other snitches version of events, you are indeed vouching for their statements and their truthfulness as people, and you become responsible for *EVERYTHING* that other snitch has said and *EVERYONE* they have snitched on.

Excellent. Let's continue this statement to its logical conclusion, shall we?

All four of the "non-cooperating" defendants, in the course of entering into their plea agreements, confessed to the actions in which they took part. Other people were involved in those actions, and information had been provided about those other people in the confessions of the people that you refer to as "snitches." So, following your logic, by confessing to those actions, even if they named no one else, they vouched for the truthfulness of the "snitches" and are now responsible for "everything" they said and "everyone" they "snitched" on.

In other words, following your logic, by the simple act of confessing and naming no other names, your martyrs have become...snitches.

Carry on.

An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: femin(A)zi on Thursday, August 02 2007 @ 12:02 PM CDT
the non-cooperating witnesses are not martyrs. they negotiated a deal in which they avoided trial and having to face 8 snitches all pointing fingers at them. they held on to their ideals, did not incriminate anybody, and are serving sentences roughly 18 months longer than comparable snitches. i think 18 months is worth the piece of mind that NOT betraying your friends, community, or conscience brings, don't you?

the FULL plea agreements for the 4 non-cooperating defendants are available online. they don't have anything to hide. but in addition to decisively NOT INCRIMINATING anybody in their debrief with the government, they made the government change the conspiracy charge to not include anyone's name but their own, as well as to get rid of the case as the government alleges. they did so because they could not in clear conscience plea to something which incriminates others, which is what the conspiracy charge that darren and the other snitches have plead to does.

the conspiracy charge in the snitches' plea agreements details the state's full case: who did what, when, and how, including people who have not yet been found by the government. simply pleading to this charge means corroborating and approving the state's case against others.

darren has cooperated with the state against others. once again, not even darren's support team denies this. they are merely trying to mutilate the concept of solidarity and integrity to include those who willingly and knowingly incriminate others in the hopes of saving themselves.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: *sabrina* on Thursday, August 02 2007 @ 06:10 PM CDT
If anyone out there is going to be overly sensitive and personally bias in this matter, it's ME. A dear friend of mine, Joe Dibee, is a fugitive in this case and is one of the people Darren snitched on to get a reduced sentence. If anyone is going to be especially concerned with the welfare and potential future legal battles of the fugitives in this case, it's ME. Not random anonymous internet users who know nothing about the case and the people it involves, people like you who just looking for something to argue about.

I freely admit that I find the non-cooperating plea agreements to be non-ideal, you're not catching me in a loophole. In an ideal world, we'd all get to find out more about the NSA wiretappings and have disclosure of that program. In an ideal world, the government would have to waste a lot of their money and resources on full trials for the 4 non- cooperating defendants. In an ideal world, there would have been a way to fight the case and get not guilty verdicts so that the 4 non- cooperators would not have to agree with any part of the government's case in order to not spend their lives in prison. I find it unfortunate that those who have not yet been arrested or brought to trial have to contend with the fact that 13 of the 19 people involved did corroborate some part of the government's version of events to one degree or another.

I'm sure that the issue weighed greatly on the 4 non-cooperators. These were not people who acted out of blind panic and self-serving desperation. When I first got their plea agreements, I read through them quickly expecting them to be much worse than they were, and to name the names of people who's already been charged in the case. They were better than I expected, and I truly believe that the non- cooperating pleas were the best, most principled pleas that anyone could negotiate given the situation. I am as bias on the matter as anyone can possibly be, and I would never cast stones at Jonathan, Daniel, Nathan, and Joyanna.

I can not say that about Darren or any of the other snitches in the case. They took the easy way out, they actively sold out their former friends in exchange for tiny reductions in sentences, and they did not wait to see if they could stand strong and find some way to reduce their prison time with *smart legal work* rather than *destroying people's lives by working with the FBI*.
On an aside:
Authored by: *sabrina* on Tuesday, July 31 2007 @ 04:33 PM CDT
I wanted to post a thank you to Infoshop & Chuck for allowing this
discussion to take place. Portland Indymedia has been censoring this
discussion for some time now, and I'm glad to finally see it having a spot
in a space not edited by snitch sympathizers. It's genuinely heartening,
because judging from the posts on PI that have not been deleted, you'd
think the entire movement is standing firmly behind snitching (as long as
the snitches are popular individuals).
On an aside:
Authored by: Vladamiraaron on Tuesday, July 31 2007 @ 04:51 PM CDT
As long as this thread doesn't devolve into breaking any of the moderation policy it will not be moderated. - Vlad, Moderator Extraodinaire of the Infoshop Collective (who lets Chuck take the blame cause it's funny...ok not really, but I might if the mood strikes me.)

---
J Ho Soli!
On an aside:
Authored by: evh on Wednesday, August 01 2007 @ 09:17 PM CDT
I would like to note that Megan has not used her last name in her support bulletins, nor has she been identified in any media reports, and so it's completely inappropriate for an anonymous user to use her full name in her various attacks on her.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: stop snitching on Thursday, August 02 2007 @ 03:43 PM CDT
In response to "evh":

Nobody needs to "characterize" Darren as "cooperating vs. non-cooperating", because he himself and Megan and Resist.ca all admit that he is cooperating with the FBI and US government against others charged as part of the Green Scare.

Supporting Darren as a friend or family member is worlds apart from defending him as still part of a resistance movement or worthy of a resistance movement
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: talonx on Thursday, August 02 2007 @ 04:47 PM CDT
Congratulations on helping the U.S. government follow through on its plans to create distrust and infighting.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: *sabrina* on Thursday, August 02 2007 @ 05:10 PM CDT
That is such bullshit. I'll call it argument #184 why it's okay for Darren to
be a snitch.

DARREN is the one who has created distrust and infighting. DARREN is
the one who has knowingly and purposefully helped the government
destroy activists.

Cutting ourselves off from Darren and and snitch supporters is all about
trying to repair the trust he and "Resist".ca have helped shatter.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: talonx on Friday, August 03 2007 @ 06:59 AM CDT
I never said anything about it being okay, I just said congratulations on helping the U.S. govt achieve its goals of distrust and infighting.

If anything I have argued that their needs to be dialogue beyond simple name-calling which is really all that is going on here.

I don't advocate snitching, but nor do I advocate the break down which labeling someone a snitch seems to bring.

At the end of the day the U.S. government and people employed by them are the ones doing the jailing not the snitches.

It's all well and good for you to write off everything that disagrees with your perspective (which seems to be one on par with the logic behind capital punishment and life sentencing, that is "once a snitch always a snitch so never allow redemption") as bullshit, however you still haven't really pointed out how snitchcalling really helps the rest of us out in the long run.

Should these people be branded for the rest of their lives--if so if we can't even redeem people how can we redeem a society guilty of far worse.

I just don't think name calling and ostricism ultimately leads to anything productive regardless of the transgression.

Fact of the matter, the U.S. govt would be(prob is) delighted at the infighting and distrust this entire situation has created. Not only is daren guilty of a transgression but now some people are choosing to say all his supporters are.

An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: *sabrina* on Friday, August 03 2007 @ 03:44 PM CDT
Again, DARREN, MEGAN, and "RESIST".CA are the ones creating infighting. It is standard issue activism 101 that FBI informants are not welcome in activist circles. End of story.

I know your goal is to make wishy-washy arguments about how everything is too vague and incomprehensible to any of us to understand, but thankfully, you're in the minority.

however you still haven't really pointed out how snitchcalling really helps the rest of us out in the long run.

If I have to explain this, you've obviously never had anything to do with any activist scene nor read about anything to do with the history of social justice movements. I don't know how you made it to this web site if you don't understand what's wrong with snitching and keeping snitches out of activist circles. If this is really something that confuses you, there's nothing I can say any more than would make you understand it.

But, I don't think your goal here is to understand, but to try and muddy the waters and make everything seem completely ambiguous. Taken a page from "Resist".ca lately?
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: talonx on Sunday, August 05 2007 @ 06:51 AM CDT
It is not a wishy washy argument, it is merely in observation of the fact that when the cooperaters get out the ones that aren't completely beat down by prison are gonna try and get involved in some minimal way.

And people will be yelling snitch at them, even after the damage is all done, and they wont be able to contribute anything. The problem with communism is it leaves people out, is this a problem with anarchism too?

What if someone use to work for the government, as an undercover agent and decides one day to get into anarchism. No room for that one, put him up against a wall?

You do one far worse than snitching with your virtual death sentence. Hows that?
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: winepress nate on Friday, August 17 2007 @ 12:50 PM CDT
No one is saying that these people cannot be a part of an anarchist society, they are saying that we should be able to define how we relate to other people. If there is going to be an anarchist society, the cops and feds, and military and politicians and dictators, wil need to be a part of it, that does not mean that we should trust them or consider them a part of the movement, until they have shown that they no longer want to be on the side of the people who put others in prison.

If a snitch wants a pen pal, send them my direction, I will treat them as human beings, but please stop insisting that people somehow owe government informers access to or membership in the movement.
I'm still calling for people to drop "Resist".ca
Authored by: *sabrina* on Thursday, August 02 2007 @ 05:07 PM CDT
To me, this is about so much more than the Oregon case.

Darren's fan club (Megan and "Resist".ca) have decided to stick
by him, even though he's a government informant who destroys lives.
Many postings have been made by Darren's followers about how they
will continue to love and support him, and are eager to see him again
once he gets out of prison.

Darren was once a part of "Resist"/TAO, does that mean he'll be
allowed back as a part of the group once he's out of prison? Even
though Darren's plea is sealed, it's safe to bet that it includes an
agreement to aid the US government whenever called to do so in the
future. That is a standard clause of a snitch plea agreement, I don't
think I've ever heard of a snitch plea that does not include such a thing.

Am I the only one wary of a US government informant with extensive
computer knowledge being given access to all of "Resist".ca's web sites
and email? Or even if he's not given root access officially, what's to
keep his fan club from providing it for him anyway? They've lied and
covered for him thus far.

Many people are wary of Google's Gmail for privacy/data collection
issues, why not be up in arms over "Resist".ca being run by people who
are adamantly in favor of cooperating with the state? Give it another
year or so, and they might have a government informant with direct
access to everything.

Does ANYONE want a government informant (and/or his supporters)
having access to a large chunk of all North American activist
communication?

"Resist" is not secure, and I for one hope that activists will divest their
email and web hosting from a pro-snitching collective that may soon
include a government informant. You might as well record all your
conversations and mail them to the FBI as have "Resist".ca in charge of
your online communications.

In my opinion, the reason the government is so pleased to have Darren
on their side is not because of what he could do with the Oregon case,
but because of what he can do to even more people in the future.
I'm still calling for people to drop "Resist".ca
Authored by: talonx on Friday, August 03 2007 @ 07:10 AM CDT
Your arguments are simply tainted, think about what you are saying before your saying it. Perhaps you are though, perhaps you're more than happy spewing out false propganda. I think you may have gone off the deep end if you truly believe that any anarchist collective is suddenly pro-snitching.

You can be as pissed as you want. Facts are still facts, non of the cooperating defendants decided to jail or try anyone. Further, people are bound to make mistakes, poor decisions, and act with weakness.

I don't think anyone is truly arguing that darren didn't cooperate, but it seems like people are arguing that he should be cut off, isolated, and completely abandoned by all anarchists. That is bullshit. Why don't we just give up on everybody then.
I'm still calling for people to drop "Resist".ca
Authored by: *sabrina* on Friday, August 03 2007 @ 03:21 PM CDT
Point out one place where I've distorted any facts. Megan, Darren, and the "Resist".ca people are the ones who have been consistently lyng thier asses off to try and cover for Darren.

I don't think anyone is truly arguing that darren didn't cooperate, but it seems like people are arguing that he should be cut off, isolated, and completely abandoned by all anarchists. That is bullshit. Why don't we just give up on everybody then.

Yes, FBI informants and people who are in favor of becoming an FBI informant should be "cut off, isolated, and completely abandoned by all anarchists". There isn't a sane person on this site who would disagree with that statement. If you personally want your friendship circle to be filled with FBI informants just so you can sow the world how nonjudgemental and nice you are, it's your own business, but stay away from the rest of us who's goals are different. Just beause Darren's fan club and I are opposite ends of the argument doesn't mean the truth lies in the middle. Sometimes, people are simply wrong.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: totalxliberation on Friday, August 03 2007 @ 12:52 PM CDT
"I don't think anyone is truly arguing that darren didn't cooperate, but it seems like people are arguing that he should be cut off, isolated, and completely abandoned by all anarchists. That is bullshit. Why don't we just give up on everybody then."

That's exactly what people are arguing. Poor old Darren didn't really snitch. That's all i'm reading. He didn't tell them anything they didn't know. And that's fucking bullshit. As was pointed out several times above, if they already knew everything they wouldn't need him as a witness. This entire case is based explicitly on snitching. That's one of the police's most common (and in my mind) obvious tricks for interrogation, they ALWAYS say "all your friends said this blah blah blah", and guess what, THEY'RE LYING. If Darren was such a fucking hero to "our movement" (who's movement? Snitch sympathizers aren't part of any movement I want to be involved in) he would've known this. And why don't we give up on everyone? Because not everyone cooperates with the police. In fact, one of the stronger things about our movement is when you look at the number of underground actions and then compare it with the amount of cases actually prosecuted, we're great at keeping our mouths shut. Unless of course everyone you know is a snitch in which case let me show you the door.

Bullshit. Fucking total bullshit. This thread is so beyond infuriating. He's a snitch and he should be removed, he's a security risk for everyone around him. Period. This isn't "divisive infighting" because Darren is no longer "in". By selling out his former comrades, Darren is by definition now THEM. He has chosen to side with his captors, with the corporations, with the state, with capitalism, and therefore he is now directly an enemy of both the earth's advocates and by extension the earth itself. He's turned his back on the entire movement and he doesn't deserve support, his VICTIMS deserve support.

And yes, an "anarchist" collective clearly can be prosnitching if they offer webhosting to a fucking snitches support group.

And if we're talking about privilege at the moment, lets talk about the privilege of inefficiency. Anyone defending a snitch has never had to deal with friends and comrades in jail, has never had to operate in a circle where shit got done because it was truly believed to be life or death, not just a stupid anarchist game about "uniting the workers", has never had FBI agents show up in their room at 2am without announcing themselves, has never had to deal with repeated harassment and intimidation. I get the very distinct impression that most of the people defending Darren on here are very far removed from anything resembling environmental justice/animal liberation. The only thing you know about repression is the Sacco and Vanzetti trial. If we're going to start throwing that word around, let's be open and honest here, privilege in this circumstance comes mostly from inaction under the guise of revolution, a shallow attempt at making yourself feel better. This defense of snitching shows nothing more than your true (and useless) colors.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: Admin on Friday, August 03 2007 @ 01:01 PM CDT
First of all, can we have an adult discussion without somebody throwing the word "privilege" around like they are some kind of 14-year-old who has just discovered the meaning of some cool new word? Jesus Christ, I'm tired of how that damn word is being thrown around these days by anarchists.

Secondly, if an anarchist website decides to host a website which supports somebody who you think is a snitch, that doesn't make them "pro-snitching." What an asinine argument. There are plenty of reasons to criticize said ISP, but saying that they hold a position which they don't hold just makes your arguments carry less weight. An anarchist ISP may decide to continue carrying a website for other complicated reasons, one being that they may want to remain neutral about site content.

You may think that this issue is clearcut, but given this discussion, obviously anarchists can't even agree on these issues.

Chuck
Infoshop News
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: totalxliberation on Friday, August 03 2007 @ 01:08 PM CDT
How is Darren's snitch status even open for debate? He cooperated with the federal government and named his former comrades implicating them in actions. It doesn't matter if he thought "they already knew". That's exactly what snitching is! Whether you think he should be removed or not is another thing, (which is frightening, but still another thing) but his snitch status has been established pretty firmly.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: Admin on Friday, August 03 2007 @ 01:19 PM CDT
Everything is open for debate. This is an anarchist website, thus we encourage open discussions on topics like this one. You may think that the "fact that Darren is a snitch" ends the discussion, but it simply doesn't. People have different opinions about whether or not snitches should be supported or not. People are discussing websites that host support websites. It sounds to me like there are plenty of things for people to talk about concerning this issue.

Chuck
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: talonx on Sunday, August 05 2007 @ 06:46 AM CDT
So lets just throw um all up against a wall ,is that what you guys are really saying?

Some real humanism circulating in these quarters.

I am sorry you are all so hurt.
Moderation
Authored by: Admin on Friday, August 03 2007 @ 08:15 PM CDT

Comment deleted for personal attacks and misrepresentation of an organization's position.

Moderation warning!
Authored by: Admin on Friday, August 03 2007 @ 08:32 PM CDT

Infoshop News wants to remind our readers that posting comments about people's personal lives is unacceptable here. Moderators will remove any comment that attacks somebody over their personal lives or divulges details about a person's personal life.

We'd also like to remind people that while it is OK to criticize organizations here, you may not spread false rumors about organizations or about positions that they haven't officially expressed. There are plenty of ways to make your criticism without resorting to lying and slander about organizations and individuals.

Moderation
Authored by: Admin on Saturday, August 04 2007 @ 12:56 AM CDT

Comment deleted for violation of moderation policy. (Personal attacks. Exposure of personal information without consent of the subject. Commentator also posted last name, which had to be manually removed from the database).

An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: jenny on Saturday, August 04 2007 @ 12:08 AM CDT

While I
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: femin(A)zi on Saturday, August 04 2007 @ 01:18 AM CDT
this is the first time i've smiled reading this thread.

oh, i can't wait to read the mental contortions the snitch-apologists will be forced to come up with! the stench of cowardice is better than a cup of coffee to wake you up in the morning.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: veranasi on Saturday, August 04 2007 @ 10:01 AM CDT
I don't know you, so I don't really have to defend myself, but I do know about you, through friends, etc.

What I can say is that anything I've said earlier in this thread echos real concerns that people have. For me, this is all about moving forward and figuring out how to make this not happen again. I'm not sure if some ARA style "snitches get stitches" approach could ever help.

At any rate, if I had to a pick a "hero" it would be you and everyone in your position. Everything I have heard about you in particular has been amazing.

Correction
Authored by: Earth First on Saturday, August 04 2007 @ 06:32 PM CDT
This open discussion is valuable but I think it's necessary to point out some misinformation.

Resist is not a "pro-snitching collective;" it hosts Darren's support website. It is senseless to tear down everyone associated with Darren and his support group. This guilt-by-association hysteria is damaging to everyone involved - including those propagating it.

Megan is not the only member of Darren's support committee. She is not the only Resist member. There is a whole community involved with web activism through this site. They work hard for no pay and they don't deserve to be snitch-jacketed by folks at Infoshop.
Correction
Authored by: Admin on Saturday, August 04 2007 @ 06:38 PM CDT
"There is a whole community involved with web activism through this site. They work hard for no pay and they don't deserve to be snitch-jacketed by folks at Infoshop."

You make some good points that reflect our policy, but the end of this sentence is confusing. The folks at Infoshop could be construed to mean those of us running the project. I think you mean that "a few readers" of Infoshop News are saying some things.

It's also unfortunate that you use the word "snitch-jacket" which is a very loaded pejorative phrase.

Chuck
Correction
Authored by: honeybaby on Sunday, August 05 2007 @ 01:45 PM CDT
talonx said "Labeling people snitches alienates" ----which is true but calling someone a snitch isn't nearly as alienating as betraying your former friends and your social movement and aiding the state in their endeavors to criminalize dissent and stifle resistance. Thats alienating.

"Earth First" said "Resist is not a "pro-snitching collective;" it hosts Darren's support website" ---as if there were some meaninful distinction to be made there. There seems to be an epidemic of blame-shifting in our community right now.

Check it out: if you are part of Resist.ca you are responsible for what sites and listserves get hosted by your collective. If there are rogue members of your collective who are hosting sites that the rest of you don't agree with, then you need to deal with that. Not that its the same thing but if Resist.ca were hosting say, a white supremacist site, you would expect that people would hold the whole collective responsible. You wouldn't shrug and say, thats only some of us. And for many of us, its important that anarchists and liberatory social justice activists do not aid the state in the state's endeavors to imprison activists and dismantle movements---and that we don't aid the people who do so.

We, as activists, cannot afford tell ourselves that its okay to cooperate in the repression of our movements, the shrinking of our civil liberties, or the safety of our lives. Its important to be on the right side of history. and thats everybody's responsibility.

So if you're part of Resist.ca, talk to your collective mates about not hosting Darren's site. If you have a resist.ca email account or website, pass on this message to them. Darren traded our asses in exchange for a tiny bit of mercy his new ally, the state. There is no place for us in this relationship.


Correction
Authored by: talonx on Thursday, August 09 2007 @ 09:33 AM CDT
Though I understand your sentiments I am inclined to disagree, the more violent among us see snitching as an offense punishable by violence (I have even heard threats of death). Such sentiments seem to me to be far more malicious (causing harm purposefully and with sadistic pleasure) in nature then "snitching" often is. That being said I may have a bias for judging peoples intents along with their actions and said actions results.

I am by no means forgiving anyone of cooperating with the government, I am saying we must allow them room to apologize and prove themselves again. Principles before preference or preference before principles? I think maybe they can be one in the same, if only we take the time to analyze.
Correction
Authored by: CaseyFord on Thursday, August 09 2007 @ 10:20 AM CDT
"Principles before preference or preference before principles?"

What an asinine question! "Preference?" That doesn't even make any sense. The question isn't one of "principles vs preference," it's a question of "pragmatism and collective self-defense vs foolish idealism and security vulnerabilities." Allowing snitches into activist circles is a HUGE security risk. The only reason I can think of to allow snitches back into the anarchist movement is if the movement isn't actually struggling for radical change, thus threatening the status quo. And if that's the case, fine, that makes things easier because now I know were not in the same movement.
Correction
Authored by: talonx on Thursday, August 09 2007 @ 04:10 PM CDT
Basically, you've decided 3 things.

-that I didn't in fact point out the "prefernce v. principle" asininity.

If you actually took the time to understand what I wrote you would see I am arguing for some kind of compromise between two extreme points of few. One view being complete exceptance and the other being virtual (or actual) execution.

-that all anarchists always and must break laws in order to create change, otherwise they support the state.

This is simply not true. Their are plenty of actions that occur within states defined legal territories but still manage to work towards anarchy (infoshops, fnb, rrfm, pages to prisoners; just to name some classics). If you truly believe such actions have no effect than I would really like to know what actions do change peoples attitudes both for and about anarchy.

-that I am not an anarchist.

This seems to be your attempt at coercing me towards your point of view, I can only state that I see myself as an anarchist and that I work daily towards such a possibility.
Re: Correction
Authored by: CaseyFord on Thursday, August 09 2007 @ 10:33 PM CDT
-that I didn't in fact point out the "prefernce v. principle" asininity.

Okay, your right there, mybad.

-that all anarchists always and must break laws in order to create change, otherwise they support the state.

That's not at all what I'm saying. I'm saying that if anarchists ever become a threat to the status quo, no matter what the means used, they will be crushed. That's just the way this system works.

-that I am not an anarchist.

I wasn't saying that at all. I was simply saying that any self-identified anarchist who identifies with your views is not someone I can consider an ally.
Re: off topic
Authored by: talonx on Thursday, August 16 2007 @ 03:32 PM CDT
"anarchists ever become a threat to the status quo, no matter what the means used, they will be crushed"

Why do you think that this is just the way the system works, obviously you don't think syndacalism works, I understand that. I am asking--why shouldn't it be possible to be apart of engineering a new status quo? We are where we are mostly by historical accident, authority in its current incarnation hasn't been engineered so much as it has been deferred to, it's not as together as we like to pretend sometimes.
Re: off topic
Authored by: CaseyFord on Thursday, August 16 2007 @ 04:02 PM CDT
We certainly can be part of engineering a new status quo, but we have to get rid of the old one as we're doing it. And certainly part of history is accidental, but a lot of it is violence too. The status quo, ie, capitalism and imperialism, was engineered using extreme violence on everybody who tried and tries to resist it. It's not going to stop doing that anytime soon. I'm not sure if what you're trying to get at is that at a certain point, the gears that make the system turn will be against it and so they won't repress us, or what. As radicals, above ground, clandestine, straddling the two, large, medium, small, violent, nonviolent or exercising a diversity of tactics, state and capital will do everything in their power to stop us. That's just how it works. How many peaceful revolutions have you heard of? Plenty. How many of them actually resulted in true, radical change? None.

If you want to talk about how to deal with Darren and the like "post-rev," fine. But until that "rev," let's protect ourselves.

PS
"Got the hollow points for the snitches: persistence of snitch culture in communities of resistance and how to defeat it" is a fucking fantastic zine peeps should read. No, it's not advocating that we shoot snitches. It examines how various groups, movements and communities have dealt with snitching over the years and the effectiveness of each. I'll give you a hint: the Weather Underground never carried out their hyper-violent threats and got fucked up. So on the real, don't talk about "snitches get stitches" unless you are actually gonna do it, which you aren't, so cut the macho bullshit.
Re: off topic
Authored by: talonx on Friday, August 17 2007 @ 10:33 AM CDT
Working within communities, which is what alot of anarchists primarily do, is prime and primal in engineering a new status quo. What would prevent darren from continuing with this kind of work?

Additionally, when talking about government, you simply have to factor in that at the moment things are better than they have been in the past, we have a lot more avenues for action then we have ever been afforded in all of history. Certainly at any moment many governments have the power to rain terror down upon us, but, it isn't as easy to do as it once was.

Additionally, it is simply untrue to state that no peaceful revolution has ever accomplished anything, take the suicide of samurai, the fall of the berlin wall, the march on washington. Granted these things only really repositioned existing systems, but life became better afterwards as a result. Revolution isn't necessarily an instantaneous event, it can occur slowly over time eventually taking on emergent qualities.

Thanks for the zine recomendation.
Re: off topic
Authored by: CaseyFord on Friday, August 17 2007 @ 03:33 PM CDT
When anarchists are working within community, it can mean any number of things. And most of the time, they are putting their energies towards things that seek to either confront and smash the state or to build new structures to replace the structures of the state with something new (you're new status quo). You seem to think that only the former will bring down the wrath of the state. But it that were the case, projects like Food Not Bombs, anarchist Bookstores, anarchist bike shops, Critical Masses, Indymedias, sustainable living projects and so on wouldn't face repression, which they do all the time. Hell, in the FBI spies on any organization with radicals in it, and sometimes ones that don't have radicals. The only way that we can avoid repression, is by remaining a completely docile non-threat, where a non-threat is someone who won't cause the elite to lose power. We want to be threats. That's what I was getting at (in an admittedly reactionary [I've been that way a lot lately] way) when I alluded to us not being in the same movement; the movement I consider myself to part of wants to be a threat to the power the elite.

And certainly there's less room for repression in people's minds, but it still happens all the time. You know why? There's no actual consequences most of the time. There's lawsuits sometimes that emerge and win, but that's it. What happen when that guy at UCLA got the fuck tazed out of him? Nothing. What happened when the pigs tazed two peeps locked down in a parking lot in New England? Nothing? The fuckhead pig asshole who tazed that woman in Pittsburgh? He ended up playing the victim in the local media b/c his address got posted on the internet. So honestly, I don't think that repression is that difficult to get away with, especially post-9/11 (less, I think, b/c people are more okay with it, and more b/c they just expect it to happen and grumble as they accept it when it does).

"Additionally, it is simply untrue to state that no peaceful revolution has ever accomplished anything."
That's absolutely correct. That is untrue. I also didn't say that. I said:
"How many [peaceful revolutions] actually resulted in true, radical change? None."
And you admit that those "revolutions" were "only really repositioned existing systems." I guess I disagree that a gradual revolution is revolution, but rather reform. Reforms are certainly positive and should be embraced, but they aren't enough.

PS
The samurai? The corrupt knights of Japan, no better than the army that replaced them?
Re: off topic
Authored by: talonx on Monday, August 20 2007 @ 06:10 AM CDT
"The only way that we can avoid repression, is by remaining a completely docile non-threat"

I must disagree. It seems that having the media on our side (which we don't, of course) as well as just maintaining a degree of visibility and solidarity in the communities in which we operate also helps. That being said, I do understand your point, however repression in U.S. society, especially at community levels, is only possible if nobody gives a damn or with the fabrication of charges. This certainly is the case alot of the time but not always.

"certainly there's less room for repression in people's minds, but it still happens all the time. You know why? There's no actual consequences most of the time."

And we have responded to this with the creation of copwatches within communities, the UCLA and Lawers Guild, and so on and so forth. Again I understand your point, but I think that more and more we are building systems for holding people acountable. Things like copwatches, UCLA, Lawers Guild, Wobblies, these are all things that are potentially workable as parallel structures in some degree or another.

The point I was trying to make with the 'revolutionary' acts I mentioned, is that without these particular events ever occuring we would not be in the positions we are today. You must certainly believe that we live in a world today, which is radically different from the one of 30k odd years ago. As systems and parts within are repositioned, you eventually get something completely different than what you started with. Not every anarchical endeavor must be illegal to be legitimate, nor must every endeavor by mutually exclusive from those occuring in the more popular political spheres.

Regarding the samurai, I was refering to an incident of revenge in 1702 (resulting in the ordered suicide of 46 samurai)that directly challenged an edict of the shogunate on the grounds of loyalty. This incident helped to reposition and decentralize power (think relatively here).
Re: off topic
Authored by: CaseyFord on Wednesday, August 22 2007 @ 03:09 AM CDT
What you are arguing for is slow reform. Not even peaceful revolution, slow reform. Fine. I'm not. Neither was Darren. If Darren wants to join an anarcho-reformist group or movement (which I like to associate with blue and black, for the record), fine. But I really don't want him in mine.

I thought you were referring to a different samurai suicide. Fair enough.
Re: off topic
Authored by: talonx on Wednesday, August 22 2007 @ 03:37 PM CDT
If I wanted slow reform, I would have to have faith in capitalism. I am arguing for a paradigm shift, one that must gather itself up both within and without of society. Reform implies I have some special love for the state, that it can be changed into something, I simply don't.
Correction
Authored by: stop snitching on Sunday, August 05 2007 @ 06:11 PM CDT
The Resist collective did put out a statement a few days ago saying that Darren's snitching is no problem for them and that those who are against Darren's snitching and are trying to exclude him are creating division and in-fighting and are falling for the FBI's tactics. Not collaborating with the FBI is part of the FBI's plans according to Resist and if you oppose collaboration with the FBI you're a fool for the FBI. They're trying to trick you into being against collaborating with them.

"Opposite Day" is a game and its only supposed to last a day! But this is serious people! This really is "life or death".

Darren Thurston and Resist.ca:
http://resist.ca/node/143
Correction
Authored by: talonx on Sunday, August 05 2007 @ 06:59 AM CDT
I think it's also worth mention that though Jenny's facts are not in question, people still have the right to hold differing opinions. Nothing Jenny has said makes me any less weary of stating that everybody needs to be allowed to participate. Labeling people snitches alienates and I just don't see how anarchism can be for the people if it can't be for all people (in some way).

Maybe something needs to be written about reintegration or something. I just know that the "first up against the wall" policy of some people here is not a good policy.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: femin(A)zi on Sunday, August 05 2007 @ 11:55 AM CDT
For me, this is all about moving forward and figuring out how to make this not happen again. I'm not sure if some ARA style "snitches get stitches" approach could ever help.

what the fuck are you talking about? no one on this thread has suggested that anyone do any physical harm to darren thurston or any of the other snitches. what people are in fact doing is trying to make sure "this does not happen again" by showing people that there are CONSEQUENCES to betraying your friends, communities, and movements. withdrawing support and solidarity for snitches is not the same thing as "snitches get stitches." it is a movement-response to behavior that we find unacceptable.

without consequences, how do you propose we convince those in the future who may waver on the line? its pretty clear that if the policy is "welcome back with open arms" there is no reason for people to think twice. not only can they sell their friends out, they get to go back and enjoy the support and solidarity of the communities they sold out. how is this a winning position?

Resist is not a "pro-snitching collective;"

let's do some real math, shall we? would resist.ca host stanislas meyerhoff's support site? or how about one for jacob fergusen, kevin tubbs, kendell tankersly, jen kolar, or lacey phillabaum's? if not, WHY? if not, why would these people be rejected when darren has done the same thing as them?

and if resist. ca would indeed host support sites for these other snitches, well, i guess we'd know the answer to the question if resist.ca is pro-snitching, wouldn't we?

Labeling people snitches alienates and I just don't see how anarchism can be for the people if it can't be for all people (in some way).

as anarchists, it's pretty obvious that we should make sure that capitalists, government agents, fascists, corporate goons, cops, racists, snitches, and everyone else we oppose never ever feels alienated. i mean, if anarchy doesn't have room for people who sell us out to the state, how can our resistance ever move forward?

oh, wait, every successful resistance movement on earth has had a zero-tolerance policy towards snitches! thankfully, most of us aren't really interested in successful resistance!

An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: veranasi on Monday, August 06 2007 @ 06:43 AM CDT
"what the fuck are you talking about? no one on this thread has suggested that anyone do any physical harm to darren thurston or any of the other snitches. what people are in fact doing is trying to make sure "this does not happen again" by showing people that there are CONSEQUENCES to betraying your friends, communities, and movements. withdrawing support and solidarity for snitches is not the same thing as "snitches get stitches." it is a movement-response to behavior that we find unacceptable."

if this were true, then people wouldn't break laws at all. or maybe the state isn't harsh enough with people who don't support it?

my guess is that when people enter the world of activism where they will be participating in illegal activities they need to know that they are risking jail time, and they should operate and assume they will probably get caught. if they aren't willing to go to jail for something they did and they believe in then they shouldn't participate. if you have strong emotional attachments to someone and you want to spend the rest of your life with them, or if marriage and a family or a good career is what you have planned in your future then you need to take that into consideration, so that when the time comes to snitch , you don't take it. the rest of us need to be aware of whomever it is we decide to work with. shunning people and calling them names after the fact, isn't really going to solve the issue. i don't blame anyone for shunning them, esp. since there is the issue of trust, but, it won't get anyone anywhere and it shouldn't be the focus on how we can deal with and prevent snitching. people don't usually come into the movement filled with passion thinking, "i'm gonna do this and then go snitch." and that has to be addressed. we need to start talking about successful tactics rather than focusing on the failures. that's what moving forward is about. we also have to allow room for people who may not be interested in militancy and address the fact that it's perfectly fine to participate in something that isn't destructive. we are a movement over staffed with soldiers who are often not really good soldiers, and community support is kind of lacking until there is an "oh shit!" crisis like this. we also have to really get to know people. sometimes our focus on personal autonomy gets in the way of really understanding who everyone is and what they are really about. and on that note you are correct. i personally don't have the time for people who simply looking for adventure and later drop out, change their mind, because they are the people who will sell out.

that's why sabrina's statement on why these people became activists in the first place makes perfect sense. until we address that, we're kind of stomping in shit.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: Anonymous on Sunday, August 05 2007 @ 09:08 PM CDT
Some people here are missing the point as regards the idea that this arguement is divisive.
Shunning a cooperating defendant, pointing out the damaging actions that their cooperation has on the movement. That's ok with me. Cooperating with the law harms the movement. I can agree with that.
However, when someone sympathizes with a snitch, or supports them, that to me is not a crime worth hurling insults at the sympathizers. Would it not be better to try to convince the sympathizer to see your point of view without painting them with the same brush as the snitch? That's where this arguement gets devisive. Being an angry asshole is not the best tactic here. Choosing to support a snitch can be seen as a philosophical choice, and it DOES NOT mean that the sympathizer supports snitching. I'm sure if Megan and other sympathizers had had the opportunity they would have tried to talk the cooperating defendants out of snitching. Nobody in their right mind is pro-snitching. The sympathizers are not trying to convince people snitching is ok. They are just argueing that it is not a crime to support people who have made mistakes (damaging though they were.) When you fail to see this fact, and insist on trying to demonize sympathizers, you just end up looking ridicuolous, and it helps no one.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: *sabrina* on Sunday, August 05 2007 @ 11:50 PM CDT
I'm sure if Megan and other sympathizers had had the opportunity they would have tried to talk the cooperating defendants out of snitching.

What makes you assume that Darren's supporters had no contact with him and no chance to discuss his choice to become an FBI informant? Judging from entries in Megan's own public blog, she was in regular phone and postal mail contact with him and was fully a part of his defense/legal decision making process. In fact, she's consistently made loud stage whispers in her comments on the case about how much super-top-secret stuff she supposedly has been privy to. That doesn't sound like someone who had no chance to discuss Darren's case with him.

And anyway, even if she did get in her two cents to say, "I don't agree with snitching" back in early 2006, what does it matter if Darren went ahead and did it anyway and she now thinks that snitching is okay?
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: Anonymous on Sunday, August 05 2007 @ 11:57 PM CDT
Do you think she feels that 'snitching is ok' or that it is ok to support your friends who have snitched. I thik there is a difference, though I imagine some will argue that supporting a snitch is in effect supporting snitching.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: *sabrina* on Monday, August 06 2007 @ 12:20 AM CDT
If Megan feels only that she personally and privately will continue to
support Darren, then why does she make posts all over the online world
about why she supports Darren? Why would Resist.ca have an official
group statement in support of Darren if it was one person's private choice?
Why would people be running a support site for Darren asking people to
write to Darren and send him gifts if this is just one person's private
feelings on the matter? The friends and partners of many of the
informants in this case have probably stood by their friends and partners in
private, but they don't go posting about it on Infoshop and try to argue
that it's an "anarchist movement" topic as Megan has done.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: *sabrina* on Monday, August 06 2007 @ 12:13 AM CDT
So lets just throw um all up against a wall ,is that what you guys are really saying?

Talonx and others have asked this question about a dozen times, and each time they've been countered and asked for a real argument. Taking my statements, and putting a question mark at the end, does not make an argument. Our back-and-forth sounds like this: "I don't like apples". "So you don't like apples?" "No, I am not into apples at all." "So you really think that apples aren't awesome?!?" That's not a debate or discussion, it's pointless babble, and I'm a bit embarrassed to keep engaging in it, but maybe there are some readers who are genuinely interested in what's going on.

Everyone already know exactly what I think, and now I want Talonx, OR ANYONE ELSE FOR THAT MATTER, to explain why you believe that FBI informants are a valuable part of social justice movements and why you keep inferring that it's important for activists for welcome known FBI informants into their circles?

With all the pointless babble that's gone on, not one person has made one argument as to why Darren Thurston has any place in activist circles TODAY. There's "arguments" about how people like him as a friend, "arguments" about how Darren was an activist in 1992, "arguments" that all center on either emotional pleas or appeals to Darren's popularity status as someone who was, in the past, an activist.

Lastly, I challenge everyone commenting on this matter to reveal who they are in terms of their relationship to Darren or other defendants in this case. Jenny and I aren't not afraid to say who we're connected to, we're not hiding behind fake names and internet handles, so why are Darren's friends hiding their friendships and relationships with him? Just like with Darren's sealed plea agreement, if there's nothing for anyone to be ashamed of, why is everything to do with Team Darren always hidden behind a bunch of smoke and mirrors? (And don't tell me you don't want "the government" to find out who you are: online anonymity is next to impossible, and the FBI already knows who all of us are who are related to this case and the defendants.)
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: Vladamiraaron on Monday, August 06 2007 @ 08:51 AM CDT
I would discourage folks from posting anything relating to associations, details, relationships, names etc. The FBI doesn't know everything and niether does any branch of the Feds. It is a fallacy that an argument is more effective or valid with or without these componants. Any and all arguments surrounding informants, the anarchist movement and the US Government can and should stand on their own.

Making what should be a theoretical discussion personal will result in moderation. This is not to say that I don't understand that this is an emotional and/or personal issue for some.

At this point I suggest folks distance themselves from anger and irrational responses, center their thoughts and sort out the arguments. Once the arguments are laid out in a clear and concise manner folks can address each concern and move forward from there.

---
J Ho Soli!
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: CaseyFord on Monday, August 06 2007 @ 02:11 PM CDT
I agree that people shouldn't be posting associations beyond perhaps something that establishes bias. But whatever.

What I really want to say is that this is not a theoretical discussion. This discussion is extremely concrete, and extremely personal. It's a discussion between friends of people who have been snitched on, and the apologists of the snitch (yeah, that's loaded language, but fuck, it's a loaded issue). You aren't going to ever get both sides to talk calmly, because at least one side (and as sabrina implied, prolly both sides) is too fucking close to be calm. And that doesn't invalidate anyone's argument. In this case, I'd be pretty surprised if both sides ever just agreed to disagree (kinda like pro- and anti-choice).

PS
Betrayal is betrayal, no matter how you spin it. Maybe it's understandable, maybe it's even sympathetic. But it's still betrayal, and not something that should be supported or apologized for. I don't care how clean your shit is, I can't imagine why any anarchist would want to be around an FBI informant. They aren't just criminalizing arson, they are criminalizing dissent. That makes snitches threats to everyone in our community, under or above ground.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: talonx on Monday, August 13 2007 @ 01:00 AM CDT
I'm fine with my general identity being known (though I won't give a name). I am an anarchist hailing from chicago, ill and bloomington, in. Currently nor ever, have I had a connection with D or any of his "ilk" as you seem to think of them. I live in berlin. I don't know exactly what else you want.

As for my seemingly echoic questions, I was seriously unsure as to your opinion on how to treat snitches, and after that I was seriously devoted to keeping that at center stage.

I think we have room for everyone at some level. Additionaly, regardless of what people here have said, there is a very adament pro-violence pro-retribution contigent of anarchists willing to harm snitched. IT EXISTS, that is just fact. Effectively, calling someone a snitch endangers their life, either among other anarchists or in prison if the word gets out (which it does).

I am not saying forgive and forget, only that would should forgive for want of a popular movement.

I think it's also worth mention that non of these defendants no-matter what their degree of cooperation, probably enjoyed informing or cooperated to the full extent that the govt. wanted. Not that that makes it all better, just that we should keep in mind levels of intention and guilt here and realize that all snitches are not created equal.

I'll put forward the argument that you want.

How, in an anarchist society, do we deal with those who have, at one time or another, betrayed those closest to them in want of personal security? Is their one punishment for all, or does
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: winepress nate on Monday, August 13 2007 @ 07:51 AM CDT
It is called free association.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: talonx on Thursday, August 16 2007 @ 03:16 PM CDT
Yeah I know, the point isn't free association though, it's developing a strategy for dealing with these situations without devolving to the use of moralistic (non-experiencial and illogicall code and laws that are anything but discussable) judgements. I'm sorry I just don't think there is one answer and only one answer to fixing every problem, we need options, not dogma.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: winepress nate on Friday, August 17 2007 @ 08:01 AM CDT
I hardly think that free association is dogmatic. Sometimes I think it is best to stand firm on principles. It can be good to get all postmodern when having a philosophical discussion, but when it comes down to it, we really need to stand firm on basic anarchist principles. Why does it take a weenie non-anarchist christian to explain the basics to people who should know better. This isn't a movement comprised only of timid progressive protesters, there are peole involved in this movement who are doing very serious and sensitive actions, and people trying to start an actual revolution. While I am definately not on the front lines by any stretch of the imagination, I am not surprised that there are people who might be doing the same kind of actions the Darren was, who might not be very fond of someone who has endangered their lives, freedom, and the movement that they have dedicated themselves to.

You say that calling someone a snitch endagers their lives in prison. I just want to make two points here. First, did you ever consider that a "snitch" endangers the lives of their former allies. Second, if a "snitch" is concerned about other prisoners learning the truth and retaliating, maybe they should have thought about that before they gave information to the authorities. I mean even for the most self interested person, maybe a longer time in prison with out the fear of retribution, is more pragmatic than becoming an informant.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: talonx on Friday, August 17 2007 @ 10:17 AM CDT
With regards to free association and postmodernism, I think it is very important to ask; at what point does our free association hinder another persons ability to associate at all? As social animals I would say it isn't very insane to say we need to have associations to be healthy. The problem here is, if darren or others in similar situations aren't given any options then whom do you think they will associate with. Defining people like darren as enemy, forever and regardless, becomes self-fulfilling, and frankly I wouldn't be surprised to see him working for the cia in a couple of years or just dead, especially if we all completely give up hope for an anarchist rehabilitation of people in his situation.

Additionally, with your criticism (snitches endanger others) of my criticism (labels such as snitch endanger snitchees), I don't think retribution (ie revenge) and positive punishment (inflicting or intending to inflict pain to teach lesson) are really strategies we need to use for winning people over. Completely inhumanitarian and also what the prison system already does (we aren't siding with prisons I hope?).
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: winepress nate on Friday, August 17 2007 @ 12:38 PM CDT
I am not promoting prisons or retaliation against snitches by other prisoners. I am just saying that if you do snitch in order to get a lighter sentence, then don't be surprised when people who are serving a longer senence than you hate you.

I am not telling people wether they should or should not associate with snitches. Each person should feel free to associate or not associate with Darren. I would encourage people to forgive Darren, but I don't think it is right to demand that people support him. Free association is not a black and white issue, there are different kinds and levels of association. It is not either "hey here is my credit card, I love you unconditionally, and oh yeah, do you want to know my greatest fear" or "I hate you, fuck off and die!". Everyone should be able to draw firm lines, but they don't have to be extreme.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: talonx on Monday, August 20 2007 @ 06:18 AM CDT
I think we are in some basic agreement here. Throughout this posting the argument has been put forth, and this is a generalization, that anybody providing any sort of humanitarian support for snitches or remaining friends with them is not an anarchist. Additionally, apperently snitches have no right to call themselves anarchists...Now I know you aren't arguing these things here, but some have, perhaps they don't realize this or perhaps they do and don't see problems with their arguments. My only and sole point is, we need not get dogmatic and attache clauses to the concept of free association (never associate or forgice snitches). Additionally, I think we should perhaps be more discursive less devisive on the issue of Darren. Very few people see the issue open to debate.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: winepress nate on Friday, August 17 2007 @ 08:14 AM CDT
p.s. Has Darren even appologised for his actions? I mean, if he really does want people to support him, it would be common courtesy to ask people to forgive him before he (or his friends) demand that they support him. Right?
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, August 06 2007 @ 04:44 PM CDT
"With all the pointless babble that's gone on, not one person has made one argument as to why Darren Thurston has any place in activist circles TODAY."

Here
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: D. Umpster on Monday, August 06 2007 @ 07:59 PM CDT
Supporting the underground means not supporting the police, feds or their agents and Darren is a government agent. He signed a secret agreement to cooperate and assist the government send anarchists to prison. I thought all anarchists were anti-government so why would anyone on this site support Darren or any other government agent? I am truly baffled.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: talonx on Monday, August 13 2007 @ 07:21 AM CDT
Because people are still people at the end of the day, and I for one think we need to treat them with some amount of dignity and respect, perhaps the same we would want for ourselves. I am not saying respect their opinions, I am saying respect their honest efforts to change, to make amends. If their isn't space for everyone, then count me out.

Call me idealistic, call me whatever you will, I just don't think anarchism will turn out to be anything different from any other radical movement unless we attempt to fix our problems that are mirrored rampant and endemic in other political movements. Things like exclusivism, elitism, deferal to authority.

On another note, sure, I'd like to see what those sealed files say, but regardless of what they say, the base of my argument still stands. We need a more devoloped dialogue, something more than "fuck him".
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: winepress nate on Monday, August 13 2007 @ 07:35 AM CDT
While I agree that it is important to learn from people with lots of experience, I don't think that means that we should support people who's experience includes helping the State against fellow activists. I also believe in forgiveness, but there is a huge diferance between forgiving someone and allowing them any acess to a movement that relies on true solidartiy. I urge people to forgive if they can, but do not give a former informant any information or acess at all. Please do not continue to blur the lines between compassion and trust. If Darren needs food, give him something to eat, if he wants to take part a project, kindly show him th door.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: Cuica2 on Thursday, August 09 2007 @ 11:27 PM CDT
I just read all of this, and I have a lot of questions to ask and points I
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: winepress nate on Monday, August 13 2007 @ 08:30 AM CDT
If a former informant wants to do their own direct action, fine, in that sense they are once again a part of the movement, but in terms of thinking that they have some sort of right to not be critisized or excluded, how dare they.

I don't think that activists should do an action, unless they are willing to face the possible consequences of standing for what they believe. Activism isn't just being willing to take a risk, it is being prepared to follow through in a consistant manner even if everything falls apart.

That being said, I can understand that we can't always know what we really can handle once the shit hits the fan.

However, What I truely cannot understand is how someone could turn on their brothers and sisters, and then try and demand that they be accepted back into their former circles. Once again, I urge people to forgive, but not forget. Forgiveness is something that we should strive for, but not something that we can demand from others.
An Open Letter Reflecting on the Recent Green Scare Hearings
Authored by: !O_O! on Monday, August 20 2007 @ 09:54 PM CDT
Wii'nimkiikaa is a journal of revolutionary indigenous resistance. It had a web site on resist.ca.

In July of 2007, Wii'nimkiikaa removed its site from resist.ca and stopped using any of resist.ca's services.

Wii'nimkiikaa has submitted a statement on this matter on its own thread on the Infoshop news wire (aug 20, 2007):

"Wii'nimkiikaa Pulls Its Site From Resist.ca"