Saturday, February 27th, 2010
Amazing… the author even alludes to the fact he recognizes that the Black Bloc, Crimethinc, etc., aren’t necessarily to be regarded as political anarchists, which has a long, rich intellectual history. It will be clear to readers of this site that this is not an anarchist site (neither are we left or right), nor would we ever promote anarchism – there is a moral brightline based on whether a limited state with a mandate to protect citizen’s rights has a right to exist that lies between movements such as libertarianism and anarchism – but for a mainstream writer to see this nuance, and to even bring up the issue of the potential use of the Black Bloc as a cover for police provocation is real progress in the political dialogue of this nation.
Flashback: Vancouver Olympics protesters fall silent as Black Bloc ruins it for everyone | Olympic protesters smash store windows | Provocateur Cops Caught Disguised As ‘Anarchists’ At Pittsburgh G20 | G20 police ‘used undercover men to incite crowds’ | G20 protests: Riot police, or rioting police? | Rioters Were Paid To Provoke the Police in Bulgaria | Greek Cops Caught on Video Posing as Anarchists | ACLU wants probe into police-staged DNC protest | Ex-Italian President: Provocateur Riots Then “Beat The Shit Out Of Protesters” | Massachusetts Police Get Black Uniforms to Instill Sense of ‘Fear’ | Police inspector posed as militant protester | Quebec police admit agents posed as protesters | Canadians who trust our secret police should think again
Doug Ward, Vancouver Sun
February 27, 2010
Destructive tactics fail to attract public sympathy for the cause and alienate moderate activists
The performance of the anti-Olympic protest movement over the past two weeks bears resemblance to certain Canadian skiers who over-reached, lost their form and crashed.
The shambolic and small group of black-clad anarchists who threw a newspaper box at the downtown Hudson’s Bay Co. store on the first day of the Olympics — shocking Olympic revellers queuing for fuzzy red mittens — did more than crack a store window.
They splintered the unity of the far-left anti-Olympic protest against the “Olympic industry” and athletes such as Alexandre Bilodeau and Maelle Ricker going for gold on “stolen native land.”
They also further marginalized the Olympic Resistance Network, the main protest group, which had already failed to connect with middle-class left-liberal people in Vancouver who shared some of its concerns over spending billions of dollars on the Olympics rather than ending poverty.
The violent tactics of the black-bloc anarchists, a fringe subculture within a fringe political sub-culture, sparked a fierce debate in the anti-Olympic movement.
Many left-wing posters on various websites have even wondered whether the anarchists (whether they are true anarchists is a subject too complex to discuss here) were agents provocateurs assigned by the police to deep-six the anti-Olympic cause.