Anarchy : Deep in the Woods

I recently read this rather interesting article — ‘Children of Ted: The Unlikely New Generation of Unabomber Acolytes’ (John H Richardson, New York Magazine, December 11, 2018) — which left me feeling curious as to what is, in fact, the political legacy of the Unabomber (AKA Ted Kaczynski). My interest is also inspired by having recently watched Netflix’s Manhunt: Unabomber (of which, based on others’ description, Kaczynski is not a fan).

Witnessing global ecology on the point of total collapse is perhaps another reason to (re-)examine his ideas.

From memory, I think I first encountered Kaczynski’s manifesto (Industrial Society & Its Future) in the pages of zines like Fifth Estate. Certainly, I remember there being a lot of discussion of the text in the radical press, especially its meaning and significance for anarchists and environmentalists. Kaczynski went to some trouble to ensure his text was published in The New York Times and The Washington Post: his bombing campaign between 1978 and 1995 killed three people and injured 23. For all that, Lewis Mumford is the better read.

It’s in this context that the various groups, projects and individuals who may (or may not) constitute ‘Ted’s Children’ have emerged, identified in the article as being ‘Books and webzines with names like Against Civilization, FeralCulture, Unsettling America, and the Ludd-Kaczynski Institute of Technology‘; Deep Green Resistance, Derrick Jensen, Individualidades Tendiendo a lo Salvaje/Individuals Tending Toward the Wild (ITS) and so on. (Oddly, it does not reference John Zerzan.) While each of these individuals, groups, texts and projects has generated its own fair share of controversy, that surrounding ITS and eC0-eXTReMiSM is something else again.

Existing within and emerging from a broader anarchist, insurrectionist and nihilist milieu, or seeming to, ITS is a relatively new kid on the anti-civilisationist bloc. Its first communiqué was published in April 2011, and claimed responsibility for a parcel bomb sent to nanotechnologist Oscar Alberto Camacho Olguin. In ENG translation, it reads in part:

In Mexico, as mentioned, nanoscale technology continues to grow, the government of the Mexican State wants to keep abreast of progress and modernity (also by the morbid and mediocre goal of reaching the national presidency) and therefore has built the Universidad Politécnica del Valle de Mexico, where the Nanotechnology degree is one of several courses complicit in technological development. The reasons to attack all types of growth in nanoscience are quite strong and therefore we have sent a parcel bomb to that institution on April 14th of this year, specifically to the head of the Engineering Division in Nanotechnology, Prof. Oscar Alberto Camacho Olguin. We have no hesitation in attacking those people who are key to the climax that technology wants to achieve. We prefer to see them dead or mutilated rather than continuing to contribute with their scientific knowledge to all this shit, to continue feeding the Domination System.

Since then, ITS (and its various constituents) have undertaken (or claimed to have undertaken) many more such actions, including, most sensationally, the murders and attempted murders not only of ‘mad scientists’ like Olguin but indiscriminate attacks upon civilians. In any case, there has now been published over 60 communiqués from ITS on teh webs, available for perusal on relevant blogs, and previously (in ENG translation) on the Atassa blog (now defunct). According to these sources, cells would appear to exist in Argentina, Brazil, Chile and Mexico (and presumably elsewhere in South American territories), but for obvious reasons — like their string of claimed actions — this is difficult either to confirm or to deny.


The most ominous example [of domestic terrorism in some way inspired by Kaczynski] is Individualidades Tendiendo a lo Salvaje, or ITS (usually translated as Individuals Tending Toward the Wild), a loose association of terrorist groups started by Mexican Kaczynski devotees who decided that his plan to take down the system was outdated because the environment was being decimated so fast and government surveillance technology had gotten so robust. Instead, ITS would return to its guru’s old modus operandi: revenge. The group set off bombs at the National Ecology Institute in Mexico, a Federal Electricity Commission office, two banks, and a university. It now claims cells across Latin America, and in January 2017, the Chilean offshoot delivered a gift-wrapped bomb to Oscar Landerretche, the chairman of the world’s largest copper mine, who suffered minor injuries. The group explained its motives in a defiant media release: “The pretentious Landerretche deserved to die for his offenses against Earth.”

While initially seeming to have some sympathies for anarchism (or at least its insurrectionist and anti-civilisationist tendencies), of late ITS has deepened its antagonism by threatening to kill anarchist critics, among them Scott Campbell, the author of two articles — ‘There’s Nothing Anarchist about Eco-Fascism: A Condemnation of ITS’ (May 12, 2017) and ‘Not Our Comrades: ITS Attacks on Anarchists’ (August 30, 2017) — which denounce ITS from an anarchist perspective. Further (‘Of Indiscriminate Attacks & Wild Reactions: an anti-civ anarchist engages with ITS and Atassa, their defenders and their false critics’):

ITS has attacked anarchists, in fact, has tried to detonate a bomb in an anarchist squat in order to kill or injury many of them. They have threatened even more. They have stridently condemned anarchists in word and deed. They have embraced something they call the “indiscriminate attack” and have fully embraced a particular brand of the ideology of misanthropy. They claim that any human is a legitimate target for murder and have recently claimed responsibility for multiple of them: a couple slaughtered for the sin of hiking in some relatively virgin wilderness, and the May 3rd femicide of Lesvy Rivera, a woman on the campus of National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM), who the group condemned for being human, for being drunk, and most obviously to some of us, for being a woman.

A number of other statements have since been published, some of which have been compiled into a pamphlet called ‘Against Eco-Extremism : Mirror image of Civilisation & Religion’ (July 2018), and in November the Individualist Network and Indonesian Anarchist Black Cross published Seek and Destroy Eco-Extremism Everywhere: A Joint Statement. For its part, ITS has responded to critics, who are generally denounced for their ‘moralism’, and anybody is free to wade thru their online polemics on ‘The Anarchist Library’ (see below) and elsewhere.

The two individuals featured in Richardson’s article, John Jacobi and ‘Abe Cabrera’, ‘contributed to the journal Atassa, which was dedicated on the first page to the premise that “civilization should be fought” and that the example of Ted Kaczynski “is what that fighting looks like”.’ Atassa: Readings in Eco-Extremism is published and distributed by Little Black Cart (LBC) in the US. The introduction to the first volume reads:

Atassa is the Muskogee word for “war club.’’ The atassa was the symbol of the Red Sticks, a faction within the Muskogee or Creek nation that from 1813 to 1814 fought against the encroachment of white settlers on their lands in what is now the states of Georgia and Alabama in the present-day United States.

For us, it is a symbol of a war that came too late, too late to save their sacred ground and rhythm of life, too late to fight the mass of invaders who would transform the land into something unrecognizable. Nevertheless, the war was fought, because their instincts, and arguably the land itself, demanded it.

Eco-extremism has no presence in the United States or in the English-speaking world. It started in Mexico as an illegalist tendency, not at all concerned with proselytism or popularity, and has since spread to other countries to the South and in a certain form to Europe. Those involved in this journal are thus not eco-extremists, and we don’t advocate that anyone consider this journal an exhortation to action or advocacy for illegality. Like the corridos (ballads) also coming from the South celebrating the actions of figures of the drug trade, we are here to “tell it like it is,” not changing anything or condemning any of these actions since we don’t find that attitude particularly helpful. Like the narco-corrido, our only message is: “This exists, and you have to think about it, whether you like it or not.”

We hope that our little labor will serve to inform and inspire a different perspective in the Anglophone reader.

With Wild Nature on our side.

Atassa 1 otherwise comprises elaborations on ‘eco-extremism’ and Kaczynski’s writings by Cabrera, Jacobi and others, accounts of ITS actions, historical analysis of the Creek War and other such conflicts, strategic and tactical advice for those wishing to pursue an eco-extremist approach, and so on. A second volume (I haven’t read) has been published which presumably carries on in the same manner as the first. Of the second volume, LBC notes: ‘Not necessarily the most controversial thing LBC has ever published, but certainly the publication that has caused the most furor so far.’

In response to Campbell’s articles, LBC published a statement on ‘Why do we publish such objectionable things?’ (August 24, 2018). The Brilliant podcast has also published interviews with the editor of the journal, ‘Abe Cabrera’. (Oddly, ‘Cabrera’ has also written for Ritual zine: ‘Primitivism without catastrophe’, February 17, 2016. See also : Antifa is liberalism, feminism is cancer, and I’m a monkey’s uncle, April 18, 2018.)

At some point in the last year or so, the Atassa wordpress blog was deleted. The last post to appear on the archived version of the blog, dated September 24, 2017, contains an ENG translation of ITS’s fortieth communiqué, detailing the alleged placement of:

… a package-bomb at the entrance of the Physics and Astronomy Space in the University City, addressed to Dr. Gloria Dubner, director of the establishment, who was awarded recently for her progressive efforts in support of the techno-industrial system. It seems that the person in charge of the place perceived that something was amiss and decided to call the police. We remark here that this won’t stop us. On the contrary, it compels us to do more. The next time we won’t fail. The package was aimed to wound physically and emotionally all of the techno-geeks who were nearby; not only Gloria herself but any student or simple worker. We don’t make distinctions in this war that we wage against our own species.

No shit.

It may be coincidence, but the closure of the blog seems to have been followed by the d0xxing of its alleged editor, ‘Abe Cabrera’ (details of which can be found on the 325 site), and the repudiation of the zine by some of those associated with it. The controversy over Atassa and ITS also appears to have resulted in a split among the admins of ‘The Anarchist Library’, which hosts a number of ITS writings. See : An Anarchist Librarian From North America / 10 Years Later, A Reflection And A Response / On An English Language Anarchist Library Project (August 28, 2018) | ‘About’,

In the end, according to Richardson, Kaczynski is radically unconvinced by ITS: “A hypothesis: ITS is instigated by some country’s security services — probably Mexico. Their real task is to spread hopelessness, because where there is no hope there is no serious resistance.” Possibly, ‘eco-extremism’ is a species of the genus ‘eco-fascism’. Michael Siebert (Linkola, Montana, Jacobite, July 19, 2018):

Ecofascism, more than any other right-wing movement, is destined for a surge in popularity the closer we come to environmental collapse. The earth’s ecosystems may very well collapse before liberalism, and when they do, the effects will be felt much more acutely. The anti-civilisation movement is tapping into dark territory that eco-activists won’t discuss publicly, but will stay up late thinking about.

Leaving aside the precise nature of the relationship between the doctrines, it’s worth noting that, according to this 2018 report in Spiegel (‘The Hate Network’), Kaczynski has been in correspondence with the neo-Nazi grouplet Atomwaffen (AW), who appears to inspire them to action just as he has ITS. Certainly, ITS and AW share a commitment to murderous violence, misanthropy and misogyny, and an ideological syncretism that can be baffling to outsiders. In this context, the role of particular forms of non-state terror in ultimately reinforcing state control and state violence is worth considering (see, for example, Situationist Gianfranco Sanguinetti’s reflections ‘On Terrorism and the State’ (PDF), 1978(ITA)/1980(FRE)/1982/2004(ENG)).


• Journalist and filmmaker Jake Hanrahan has been following the ITS saga, and this thread from January 2018–December 2018 provides more details regarding the relationship between ITS and Kaczynski, an alleged attack in Edinburgh (January 2018), another in Spain, ITS giving props to Mark Conditt (the alleged Austin bomber), an arson attack upon a lumberyard and the murder of a priest in Mexico, the placement of a bomb in Brazil and a polytechnic in Greece, the arson of a bus in Rome, and so on.

• Blogger ‘Lefty Hooligan’ denounces LBC for publishing Atassa in Between ‘nihilism and fascism’ (September 10, 2017) and provides links to various relevant materials, including to some on IndyBay which detail ITS’ praise for LBC and Atassa‘s role in propagating ITS’ doctrines in North America, along with approving celebrations for the murderous activities of Islamic State/Daesh in Europe and the murder of Heather Heyer in Charlottesville by neo-Nazi James Fields.

See also : In Manifesto, Mexican Eco-Terrorists Declare War on Nanotechnology, Robert Beckhusen, WiRED, February 12, 2013 | The Ted Kaczynski Papers: FBI Files and Photographs | Letters to the Unabomber: A Case Study and Some Reflections, Julie Herrada, Archival Issues, Vol.28, No.1, 2003-4 [PDF] | The Communiques of Freedom Club (The Anarchist Library) | Radical Environmentalism’s Print History: From Earth First! to Wild Earth, Bron Taylor, Environment & Society Portal (2018) | Dark Mountain | Wild Roots | The Wild Will Project | Fierce Dreams | Black Seed.

Shout-out : Michael Loadenthal, who’s authored scores of relevant essays: /// wordpress.

    They held up a stone
    I said, “Stone.”
    Smiling they said, “Stone.”

    They showed me a tree.
    I said, “Tree.”
    Smiling they said, ‘Tree.”

    They shed a man’s blood.
    I said, “Blood.”
    Smiling they said, “Paint.”

    They shed a man’s blood.
    I said, “Blood.”
    Smiling they said, “Paint.”

    ~ Dianne Abse (Adapted from the Hebrew of Amir Gilboa), 1982

Elves, pixies and ending civilization

The world becomes a sum of lifeless artifacts; from synthetic food to synthetic organs, the whole man becomes part of the total machinery that he controls and is simultaneously controlled by. He has no plan, no goal for life, except doing what the logic of technique determines him to do. He aspires to make robots as one of the greatest achievements of his technical mind, and some specialists assure us that the robot will hardly be distinguishable from living men. This achievement will not seem so astonishing when man himself is hardly distinguishable from a robot. ~ Eric Fromm, The Anatomy of Human Destructiveness, 1973

I recently watched the documentary film If A Tree Falls…, a film which documents the activities of the ‘Earth Liberation Front’ in North America.

For those of you coming in late, the ELF was a name first adopted by a handful of environmental militants in the UK in the early 1990s, barbarians who decided to sabotage various industrial projects they believed were especially harmful to the (natural) environment. Closely allied with and taking its inspiration from the Animal Liberation Front (ALF), in the mid- to late-1990s the term crossed the Atlantic and also began to be used by small circles of friends in the north-western United States.

In the US, the naughty elves’ efforts to monkey-wrench parts of the industrial Juggernaut brought them some small reward — in 2002, the FBI estimated that “the ALF/ELF have committed more than 600 criminal acts in the United States since 1996, resulting in damages in excess of 43 million dollars” — and sparked a massive effort by the US state to halt the movement and terrorise radical environmentalists into submission. Thus, having declared in 2001 that the ELF was Domestic Terrorist Enimy Number One, a so-called “Green Scare” was inaugurated by the FBI. Since that time, under the rubric of The War on Terror, police campaigns like ‘Operation Backfire’ have been supplemented by numerous other punitive state actions, reinforcing existing efforts to curb the growth of social movements in opposition to capitalism, war, animal abuse and environmental destruction.

If A Tree Falls… focuses on the trials and tribulations of one elf in particular, Daniel McGowan. In June 2007 Daniel was sentenced to 7 years in prison. Currently, he is being held at a Communications Management Unit in Terre Haute, Indiana, having been found guilty of arson, property destruction and conspiracy and declared a “terrorist” by the US state. (Note that the term ‘eco-terrorism’ was apparently coined in 1983 by Ron Arnold in an article for Reason magazine. See : “Ecoterrorism”?: A Critical Analysis of the Vilification of Radical Environmental Activists as Terrorists (PDF), Rebecca K. Smith, Environmental Law, Vol.38, No.2, 2008.)

Daniel has thus become one of over a dozen people to be convicted of crimes of ecological passion, a majority of whom eventually agreed to become state informants (including Chelsea Gerlach, Jennifer Kolar, Stanislas Meyerhoff, Lacey Phillabaum, Suzanne Savoie, Kendall Tankersley, Darren Thurston and Kevin Tubbs) in order to lessen their sentences. On June 14, 2011 they were joined by former non-cooperating defendant Brianna Waters. In addition to Daniel, just a handful of alleged and convicted saboteurs — Nathan Block, Marie Mason, Eric McDavid, Jonathan Paul and Joyanna Zacher — remained ‘non-cooperative’ upon arrest and prosecution. Most recently, on December 20, Justin Solondz pleaded guilty to arson and conspiracy charges. A handful of other alleged saboteurs — Joseph Dibee, Josephine Overaker, and Rebecca Rubin — remain at large, and the FBI is offering a reward of up to $50,000 each for information leading to their arrest.

While the FBI naturally credits their own I.N.T.E.L.L.I.G.E.N.C.E. for the successful prosecutions, the film makes it plain that it was the decision by one member of the extended family, Jacob Ferguson, to betray his comrades that was the principal cause of the downfall of this particular clan of elves. Be that as it may, relying upon its ability to exploit such vulnerabilities is a tactic with obvious flaws, and the state has devoted considerable resources to the infiltration of police agents into radical circles and social movements. In the US, a small number of these agents, such as “Anna”, have gone public, while in the UK police have been both fucking over — and fucking — activists for some years, their actions now the subject of legal proceedings (cases which bear no small resemblance to that of Rob Gilchrist in Aotearoa/New Zealand; in which context, see also : October 15th Solidarity).

In addition to infiltration and disruption of (radical) social movements and social movement organisations, US governments and US government agencies have utilised the provisions of “anti-terrorist” legislation, in particular those relating to sentencing, to crush eco-saboteurs. Although not resulting from this enhanced judicial framework, perhaps the most egregious example of disproportionate punishment is Jeff ‘Free’ Luers, who in 2001 was sentenced to 22 years and 8 months imprisonment for setting fire to a number of vehicles with damages amounting to $30-40,000. (After a successful appeal against his sentence, Jeff was freed in December 2009.) The threat of life imprisonment for ecotage has placed enormous psychological pressure on those accused of such acts, and few if any actions have been claimed on behalf of the ELF since the Scare took hold. Still…

See also : North American Earth Liberation Prisoners Support Network.

Finally, filmmaker Franklin Lopez will be touring Australia in January and February 2012 to promote END:CIV and to encourage further discussion on developing alternatives to and resisting the encroachments of industrial civilization on The Environment.

Or something like that.

You can listen to a recent interview with Franklin whenever Dr. Cam gets around to uploading it on to the interwebs… meaning: soon(ish).

See also : John Zerzan | Igniting a Revolution.

“Earth Liberation Front” delivers a letter in Victoria

Uh-oh, spaghetti-o.

Tonight’s ABC News reported that a letter, authored by the ‘Earth Liberation Front’, was hand-delivered to Hazelwood Power’s CEO Graeme York. The story was broken in the Melbourne Herald Sun:

Earth Liberation Front threaten Hazelwood power’s Graeme York
Mark Buttler, Stephen McMahon
June 15, 2009

UPDATE 11:15am GREEN activists are under pressure to dob in eco-terrorists [sic] who threatened the Hazelwood power station’s boss.

The Brumby government has warned the extremist Earth Liberation Front can’t be taken lightly with the FBI ranking them as the biggest domestic terrorist threats in the United States.

That State has also hinted tougher eco-terror [sic] laws could be on the cards in response to the terror threat.

Energy and Resources Minister Peter Peter Batchelor said today he would be “asking the Victorian Government to make sure we’ve got adequate laws to deal with these type [?] of activities”.

Any move is likely [that is, certain] to win support from the major parties, with the State Opposition also calling for wants tighter security at power plants after the threat to station CEO Graeme York.

Mr Batchelor said this was a “real threat” and that everything will be done to protect Mr York and his family after the letter was delivered to his house in Melbourne’s outer suburbs.

Mr Batchelor described the personal attack on Mr York as “unacceptable” and a worrying development.

“This [is] a direct escalation [sic] of the invasion of power sites that has been taking place in recent times – directly threatening the people that make operational decisions.

“It is totally unacceptable to invade power plants or to threaten management at their homes or invade the city offices of power plants,” he said.

“We want the Victorian police to bring down the full weight of the law on the sort [?] of people making these threats.”

Mr Batchelor said the green movement in Victoria must show that it respects the law and identify those people that have threatened Mr York.

“Victorian power supplies are threatened by these sorts of actions,” he said.

“There has been a steady and systematic escalation of environmental actions against our power supplies… it is unacceptable for the protest movement to put utility supplies at risk.

“It doesn’t matter if it is gas, electricity or water citizens deserve to have an uninterrupted supply.

“We ask the environmental movement to very rapidly identify the people who made this threat and tell the Police who they are.”

The surge in environmental protests shutting down facilities has also forced the federal government to look at boosting penalties for eco-vandalism [sic] and eco-terrorism [sic].

Power boss in terror threat

The comments come after the Herald Sun this morning revealed the extremist Earth Liberation Front secretly visited the eastern suburbs home of Hazelwood power station boss Graeme York and hand-delivered a menacing letter.

Police are investigating.

Shadow Attorney-General Robert Clark said today there had been three invasions at Victorian power stations by environmental extremists [sic] in recent months.

“They’ve been let off without conviction or with just fines,” he told 3AW.

“We’ve got to ramp up the penalties on people who do things like that.

“If you take a step out of a line at an airport and breach airport security you’re up for a very serious penalty indeed and we’ve got to do similar things at our power plants.”

Mr Clark said new laws were needed.

“These guys have just been let off, as I say, without conviction or with small fines, and that’s not acceptable, but we’ve also got to stop them getting in there in the first place, and the fact that Peter Batchelor wasn’t even told about this latest problem shows that our security’s not up to scratch,” he said.

The hand-delivered letter to Mr York reads: “The irreplaceable and precious eco-systems of this Earth are worth much more than your manicured lawn, expensive car and opulent suburban house.

“Your property will not remain safe so long as Hazelwood continues to pollute at such an inexcusable level, swallow millions of litres of fresh water every hour and cough out hydrochloric and nitrogen acids in return.”

Police confirmed they were investigating and sources said they were taking the threat seriously.

The extremist group has a record [sic] of following up on threats in the US, where it is suspected of torching dozens of homes, car yards and timber yards.

[NB. In reality, dozens of individuals have been arrested, tried, convicted and sentenced for such crimes.]

A police source said delivering the letter to Mr York’s home was a form of intimidation, much more menacing than posting it to his office.

“It’s saying: ‘We know where you live. We know your car. We know you’ve got a family’,” the source said.

Details of the letter are posted on the eco-terrorists’ [sic] website.

“Dear Graeme,” the letter opens. “As the Chief Executive Officer of Hazelwood power station, you are responsible for the dirtiest power station in Australia and the most polluting in the industrialised world.

“You are causing irreversible environmental destruction which will go on to harm not only those living on the planet today, but your children’s children too.

“We hold you personally accountable for this assault against our Earth. We do not take lightly to the perpetual destruction of our land-base for the selfish and short-term objective of fattening your bank account.”

The eco-terrorists boast of causing $150 million destruction in their crusade to protect the environment.

Their website shows photos of a burnt-out SUV dealership, a torched Hummer and wrecked earth-moving machinery.

They claim to have committed attacks in 17 countries and pledge to cause maximum economic damage.

Some ELF members have been jailed for the destructive attacks.

Established in England in the 1990s, Earth Liberation Front operates without a formal leadership structure.

The sprawling Hazelwood complex, in the Latrobe Valley, is one of the state’s biggest providers of coal-powered electricity.

Last month, 14 Greenpeace activists chained themselves to a dredger to get their point across.

The power plant is supplied by a mine, which produces 18 million tonnes of brown coal a year.

Hazelwood, which is owned by International Power, employs about 800 workers.

Mr York could not be contacted for comment.

A spokesman for International Power said the matter was in the hands of police.

Little is known of ELF’s activities in Australia, but there are suggestions it threatened the head of a major corporation last year.

A few points.

1. To the best of my knowledge, exactly one ‘action’ has been claimed on behalf of the ELF in Australia. The communiqué, published by Bite Back zine, reads as follows:

On the morning of Thursday the 31st of July, the Earth Liberation Front attacked the Victorian office of Gunns Ltd. This was an act of economic sabotage and resistance against the proposed Tamar Valley Pulp Mill, an ecocidal project which would cause disastrous and irreversible damage to the ancient and precious ecosystem of Tasmania.

This mill’s hunger for woodchips would mean a doubling of the already immense current rate of wood-chipping[1], ravaging the native forests of the North-East of the state. It would bring the Tasmanian Wedge-tailed Eagle, the Spotted-tail Quoll and the Giant Freshwater Crayfish to the brink of extinction[2]. It would spew 30 billion litres of dioxin and furan laced effluent into the Bass Strait every year[3], consume up to 40 billion litres of fresh water[4], and contribute greatly to climate change[5].

We will not accept Gunns’ continual assault on Tasmania’s old growth forests, wildlife, water supplies and carbon sinks. More extreme forms of ecocide call for more extreme forms of protest.

We will not cease until Gunns abandons its controversial Tamar Valley Pulp Mill.

In defense of our Earth,

Earth Liberation Front.

[1] Gunns Ltd. Bell Bay Pulp Mill, Draft Integrated Impact Statement.
[2] Gunns’ referral under the EPBC Act, April 2007.
[3] University of Melbourne and Forestry Tasmania 2003; Bekessy transcripts, Wielangta court case 2006.
[4] Gunns Ltd. Bell Bay Pulp Mill, Draft Integrated Impact Statement.
[5] Trees — The forgotten solution to climate change, The Wilderness Society, 2006.

I reported it at the time on my blog (it went down today for some reason, btw). Anyway, this brings me to my second point.

2. I’ve blogged reasonably extensively on ‘eco-terrorism’ in North America, especially inre the activities of the ELF, and the recent wave of state repression popularly known as the ‘Green Scare’ (almost completely ignored by the state/corporate media sector). Regarding the Herald Sun article: the ELF was indeed elevated by the FBI to No.1 in their rankings of ‘domestic terrorist’ groups. This was the case until the 9/11 attacks, at which point Islamic groups leaped ahead.

3. The reaction by the Victorian Government to the publication of the letter is predictable, not only in terms of their assessment of the seriousness of the ‘threat’, and Peter Batchelor’s promise of new legislation which will tackle the ‘issue’ (obviously — and being, seemingly, a knee-jerk response — lacking in detail), but also in terms of locating the delivery of the letter in question on a continuum of behaviour which extends to the forms of civil disobedience engaged in by activists at power plants:

“This [is] a direct escalation of the invasion of power sites that has been taking place in recent times – directly threatening the people that make operational decisions.

“It is totally unacceptable to invade power plants or to threaten management at their homes or invade the city offices of power plants,” he said…

“There has been a steady and systematic escalation of environmental actions against our power supplies… it is unacceptable for the protest movement to put utility supplies at risk.

This should be read as the Government sending a clear message to environmental activists that they should expect increasing repression by police, and stiffer penalties for engaging in civil disobedience. The motivations for this warning are fairly clear, and corresponds to increasing public concern regarding the disastrous consequences of global warming, and recognition of the role the Australian power industry plays in its continued generation.

4. While it has been assumed that the source of the letter is indeed someone acting on ‘behalf’ of the ‘ELF’ — which, as noted, has no formal membership, and which title anyone is free to adopt to describe their action/s — its source could well be elsewhere.


See also : June 2009 Day of Solidarity with Jeff Luers and all Eco-prisoners (June 12, 2009) | Eco-terror threats in Australia on the rise, Lauren Wilson, The Australian, June 15, 2009 | Greenpeace slams threat to power station boss, Mex Cooper, The Age, June 15, 2009 (Note that the ELF site to which Cooper links — — is only one of several ‘ELF’ sites, in this case being established on July 10, 2007 by a self-proclaimed member of the IWW, and consisting of little more than criticisms of the tactic of arson. Further: “A copy of the letter, in which Mr York was told his “property will not remain safe” as long as Hazelwood continued to operate, was posted on the Earth Liberation Front’s website [that is, ‘The North American ELF Press Office’, not the site to which The Age links] on June 3.”)

Some words of warning!

Earth Liberation Front Communique: 06.03.09
Earth Liberation Front Leaves Message for Hazelwood CEO Graeme York in Australia


Following the Australian government’s refusal to act on reducing climate emission while paying into the hands of the country’s largest polluters, the E.L.F paid a visit to the home of the CEO of the dirtiest Coal Power Station in the Industrialized World, Hazelwood Power Station, in Melbourne, Australia.

The E.L.F hand delivered the following note to his home:

Dear Graeme,

As the Chief Executive Officer of Hazelwood power station, you are responsible for the dirtiest power station in Australia and the most polluting in the industrialised world. You are causing irreversible environmental destruction which will go on to harm not only those living on the planet today, but your children’s children too.

We hold you personally accountable for this assault against our Earth. We do not take lightly to the perpetual destruction of our land-base for the selfish and short-term objective of fattening your bank account.

The irreplaceable and precious eco-systems of this Earth are worth much more than your manicured lawn, expensive car and opulent suburban house. Your property will not remain safe so long as Hazelwood continues to pollute at such an inexcusable level, swallow millions of litres of fresh water every hour and cough out hydrochloric and nitrogen acids in return. This Earth does not exist for the profits of avaricious CEOs like you,

The Earth Liberation Front.