HOW TO WIN A REVOLUTION
WATCH OUT ROTHSCHILDS & ROCKEFELLERS! Gene Sharp is an American intellectual whose ideas can be fatal to the world's despots. For decades, Mr. Sharp's practical writings on nonviolent revolution--- most notably 'From Dictatorship to Democracy,” also a new documentary film, "How To Start A Revolution" where he gives nearly 200 tips on how to do just that and his new, "Sharp's Dictionary' his 2011 opus, will inspire dissidents. Sharp has been a professor of political science at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth since 1972. He simultaneously held research appointments at Harvard University’s Center for International Affairs since 1965. In 1983 he founded the Albert Einstein Institution, a non-profit organization devoted to studies and promotion of the use of nonviolent action in conflicts worldwide. Sharp described the sources of his ideas as in-depth studies of Mohandas K. Gandhi, Henry David Thoreau to a minor degree, and other sources footnoted in his 1973 book "The Politics of Nonviolent Action", which was based on his 1968 PhD thesis. In the book, a "three-volume classic on civil disobedience," he provides a pragmatic political analysis of nonviolent action as a method for applying power in a conflict. And if you don't know what that means, screen "GANDHI" the Brit Film that swept the Oscars a few decades back.
Sharp's key theme is that power is not monolithic; that is, it does not derive from some intrinsic quality of those who are in power. For Sharp, political power, the power of any state - regardless of its particular structural organization - ultimately derives from the subjects of the state. His fundamental belief is that any power structure relies upon the subjects' obedience to the orders of the ruler(s). If subjects do not obey, leaders have no power.
In Sharp's view all effective power structures have systems by which they encourage or extract obedience from their subjects. States have particularly complex systems for keeping subjects obedient. These systems include specific institutions (police, courts, regulatory bodies) but may also involve cultural dimensions that inspire obedience by implying that power is monolithic (the god cult of the Egyptian pharaohs, the dignity of the office of the President, moral or ethical norms and taboos). Through these systems, subjects are presented with a system of sanctions (imprisonment, fines, ostracism) and rewards (titles, wealth, fame) which influence the extent of their obedience.
Sharp identifies this hidden structure as providing a window of opportunity for a population to cause significant change in a state. Sharp cites the insight of Étienne de La Boétie, that if the subjects of a particular state recognize that they are the source of the state's power they can refuse their obedience and their leader(s) will be left without power.
Sharp published Waging Nonviolent Struggle: 20th Century Practice and 21st Century Potential in 2005. It builds on his earlier written works by documenting case studies where nonviolent action has been applied, and the lessons learned from those applications, and contains information on planning nonviolent struggle to make it more effective.
For his lifelong commitment to the defense of freedom, democracy, and the reduction of political violence through scholarly analysis of the power of nonviolent action, The Peace Abbey of Sherborn, MA awarded him the Courage of Conscience award April 4, 2008.
A feature documentary by Scottish director, Ruaridh Arrow, "How to Start a Revolution" about the global influence of Gene Sharp's work was released in September 2011. The film won "Best Documentary" and "The Mass Impact Award" at the Boston Film Festival in September 2011. The European premiere was held at London's Raindance Film Festival on October 2nd 2011 where it also won Best Documentary.
Sharp's influence on struggles worldwide
Sharp has been called both the "Machiavelli of nonviolence" and the "Clausewitz of nonviolent warfare."It is claimed by some that Sharp's scholarship has influenced resistance organizations around the world. Most recently, it is claimed that the protest movement that toppled President Mubarak of Egypt drew extensively on his ideas, as well as the youth movement in Tunisia and the earlier ones in the Eastern European color revolutions that had previously been inspired by Sharp's work, although some have claimed Sharp's influence has been exaggerated by Westerners looking for a Lawrence of Arabia figure
Sharp's handbook From Dictatorship to Democracy served as a basis for the campaigns of Serbia's Otpor (who were also directly trained by the Albert Einstein Institute), Georgia's Kmara, Ukraine's Pora, Kyrgyzstan's KelKel and Belarus' Zubr. Pora's Oleh Kyriyenko said in a 2004 interview with Radio Netherlands,
"The bible of Pora has been the book of Gene Sharp, also used by Otpor, it's called: From Dictatorship to Democracy. Pora activists have translated it by themselves. We have written to Mr Sharp and to the Albert Einstein Institute in the United States, and he became very sympathetic towards our initiative, and the Institution provided funding to print over 12,000 copies of this book for free."
Sharp's writings on "Civilian-Based Defense"were used by the Lithuanian, Latvian, and Estonian governments during their separation from the Soviet Union in 1991.
The Iranian government charged protesters against alleged fraud in the 2009 elections with following Gene Sharp's tactics. The Tehran Times reported: "According to the indictment, a number of the accused confessed that the post-election unrest was preplanned and the plan was following the timetable of the velvet revolution to the extent that over 100 stages of the 198 steps of Gene Sharp were implemented in the foiled velvet revolution."
This coverage produced a backlash from some Egyptians bloggers including US based journalist Hossam el-Hamalawy:
"Not only was Mubarak’s foreign policy hated and despised by the Egyptian people, but parallels were always drawn between the situation of the Egyptian people and their Palestinian brothers and sisters. The latter have been the major source of inspiration, not Gene Sharp, whose name I first heard in my life only in February after we toppled Mubarak already and whom the clueless NYT moronically gives credit for our uprising."
However the Associated Press had reported as early as September 2010 more than 4 months before the revolution that Gene Sharp's work was being used by activists in Egypt close to political leader Mohammed El Baradei. http://www.cnsnews.com/node/75374 The New York Times along with several other international publications reported that Sharp's book, From Dictatorship to Democracy was available for download from The Muslim Brotherhood's website throughout the revolution.
When Egypt’s April 6 Youth Movement was struggling to recover from a
failed effort in 2005, its leaders tossed around 'crazy ideas” about
bringing down the government, said Ahmed Maher, a leading strategist.
They stumbled on Mr. Sharp while examining the Serbian movement Otpor,
which he had influenced.
When the nonpartisan International Center on Nonviolent Conflict, which
trains democracy activists, slipped into Cairo several years ago to
conduct a workshop, among the papers it distributed was Mr. Sharp’s '198
Methods of Nonviolent Action,' a list of tactics that range from hunger
strikes to 'protest disrobing' to 'disclosing identities of secret
Dalia Ziada, an Egyptian blogger and activist who attended the workshop
and later organized similar sessions on her own, said trainees were
active in both the Tunisia and Egypt revolts. She said that some
activists translated excerpts of Mr. Sharp’s work into Arabic, and that
his message of 'attacking weaknesses of dictators' stuck with them.
Mr. Sharp, hard-nosed yet exceedingly shy, has been careful not to take
credit. He is more thinker than revolutionary, though as a young man he
participated in lunch-counter sit-ins and spent nine months in a federal
prison in Danbury, Conn., as a conscientious objector during the Korean
War. He has had no contact with the Egyptian protesters, he said,
although he recently learned that the Muslim Brotherhood had 'From
Dictatorship to Democracy' posted on its Web site.
His modest house in East Boston, which he bought in 1968 for $150 plus
back taxes, doubles as the headquarters of the Albert Einstein
Institution, which Mr. Sharp founded in 1983 while running seminars at
Harvard and teaching political science at what is now the University of
Massachusetts at Dartmouth. The organization consists of him; his
assistant, Jamila Raquib, whose family fled Soviet oppression in
Afghanistan when she was 5; a part-time office manager and a Golden
Retriever mix named Sally.
Based on studies of revolutionaries like Gandhi, nonviolent uprisings,
civil rights struggles, economic boycotts and the like, Mr. Sharp has
concluded that advancing freedom takes careful strategy and meticulous
planning, advice that resonated among youth leaders in Egypt. Peaceful
protest is best, he says--- not for any moral reason, but because
violence provokes autocrats to crack down.
In the twilight of his career, Mr. Sharp, has slowed down although
he said his work was far from done. He is 88 & is publishing a new book,
this year, 'Sharp’s Dictionary of Power and Struggle:
Terminology of Civil Resistance in Conflicts,' by Oxford University
Press. He would like readers to know he did not pick the title.
'It’s a little immodest,' he said. NOT AT ALL, SEE: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gene_Sharp
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