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Outside View: Eco-thugs wanted

By BRIDGET BARTON, A UPI Outside View commentary

PORTLAND, Ore., July 15 (UPI) -- If you are looking for a way to while away those hot summer days, you might be interested in the Green Anarchy Tour, a really big show -- as Ed Sullivan might have said -- coming to "urban hells" throughout the country this summer.

The tour begins in Ashland, Ore., Wednesday and travels through California and the Southwest before making it to Washington, D.C., in August.

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The purpose of the tour, according to its sponsors, is "to destroy civilization on this stolen land."

The Green Anarchy Tour is a chance for environmental activists, animal rights activists, anarchists and urban hell-dwellers of all stripes to gather together to enjoy the musical stylings of punk rock bands such as "Bongzilla" and "The Fartz," and to participate in what they call "Direct Action Workshops."

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Direct action is the euphemism anarchists and eco-terrorists use in lieu of "sabotage," "arson," and other words that might better describe their attacks against government, the business community, or society at large.

Wildfires raging in the West and plumes of smoke drifting across the Eastern seaboard from Canadian forest fires are reminders of the consequences that environmental extremism brings to ordinary citizens.

Decades of mismanagement prompted by extreme preservationist groups have resulted in the firestorms now erupting in our national forests. Burned-out buildings, bankrupt businesses, lost jobs, and the destruction of years of valuable medical research all bear the imprimatur of anarchists and terrorists of the sort the Green Anarchy Tour appears to want to attract.

Proceeds from the tour --if there are any -- will, according to the official Web site, go to help West Coast anarchist and Earth Liberation Front prisoners such as Jeffrey "Free" Luers and Craig "Critter" Marshall, both convicted of arson for fire-bombing a car dealership in Oregon.

Writing from his prison cell Luers had this to say about "direct action" by eco-terrorists: "For years, decades, we have pleaded and petitioned those in power, those responsible for injustice, genocide and ecocide. This pleading has gone unanswered. It is time to use actions that can not (sic) be ignored.

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"In defense of life, these actions are justified. 'Strike a match, light a fuse. We only have the Earth to lose.'"

Marshall writes from the same philosphical viewpoint, "To tear down this corporate society we're going to need more than a few 'wrecking balls' because we can't rebuild an eco-system without tearing down all that stands in its way. You can't grow a garden in concrete."

"The Green Anarchy Tour," the group posts on its Web site, "is an attempt to bridge the gap between the punk movement, the revolutionary anarchist movement, the ecological movement, and prisoners of war who have been incarcerated for their involvement in the struggles listed above.

"The majority of the content encompassed on this tour is from Eugene, an outpost of civilization in one of the most wild bio-regions in 'North America.' Eugene experienced the spirit of wild chaos during a couple years of insurrection. In the aftermath, several comrades were imprisoned, several collectives endured, and what remains today is one of the most sophisticated propaganda mills in history.

"The tragedy of this historic propaganda mill is the geographic limit of it's (sic) reach. While many attempts have been made to present the critique and analysis developed in Eugene, they have not peaked outside of this locale. The Green Anarchy Tour will be an attempt to take the tools we have refined, the tools of resistance, to a new scale.

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"Through the media of slides, videos, spoken word, and music, we will share our perspective to comrades across turtle island in what may very well be one of the last state-permitted summers of 'above-ground organizing.' We understand that time is running out, for us and for the earth, and thus we will take our words, ideas, music, and spirit on the snakes of concrete, the civilized transportation infrastructure to various movements in America."

But for the more serious eco-terrorist who eschews the sort of fun and good times that the Green Anarchy Tour is bringing to towns across turtle island, there is this alternative option proposed by Earth First!:

"To those feeling suicidal: this may be an answer to your dreams. If you are determined to end it all, don't slink off to some garage and intensify acid rain and the greenhouse effect by CO poisoning. Don't jump off a bridge -- blow up the bridge! Who says you can't take it with you?"

Unfortunately, as Earth First! and the Green Anarchy Tour remind us, and as we have been reminded in recent weeks by concerns about a dirty bomb possibly in the hands of a U.S. citizen, not all terrorism threats come from outside the country.

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Bridget Barton is the editor of "BrainstormNW," a monthly magazine of ideas, entertainment, culture and politics, for Oregon and the Northwest.

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