Time is Short: Systems Disruption and Strategic Militancy

By Alex Budd

Deep Green Resistance Cascadia

The industrial machine dismantling the planet is incredibly vast, made as it is of the activity of hundreds of millions—billions—of people. Chainsaws and feller-bunchers topple forests, dams and canals drain wetlands and kill rivers, excavators tear apart mountains, dragnets scrape the ocean(s) sterile, the prairies plowed and paved over, and everything everywhere poisoned as we erase the genetic code of nature.

As civilization pushes the planet towards complete biotic collapse—speeding at the murderous pace of two hundred species a day—resistance becomes a mandate. Having seen the depressing failure of traditional & legal courses of action at slowing, never mind stopping, this death march, we are left with militant underground resistance as our only real hope for success.

While such resistance has been gaining speed worldwide in recent decades, much of the underground action taken thus far in defense of earth (at least in industrialized countries) has not been aimed or designed to cripple or stop industrial civilization. Actions have largely been defensive and reactive, with strikes against targets that—while primary causes of ecocide—aren’t critical to the larger function of industrialism or civilization.

While the courage of anyone who puts themselves on the line, risking their life and freedom in defense life, is undeniable and praiseworthy, we need more than piecemeal resistance: we need to prevent the function of industrial civilization. We don’t need to strike at the most obvious targets; we need to disable the critical support systems, to crumble the foundation of industrial civilization.

Because for all its awful horror, and despite its gargantuan sprawl, it is incredibly fragile. It is dependent on several very brittle systems (specifically electricity and oil) to sustain itself on even a daily level. These systems underlie all other industrial activity, at one level or another, and without their undisrupted operation, nothing else could function.

By disrupting these systems, that machine of industrial civilization can be brought to a screeching (and with preservation, irreversible) halt. By striking at critical nodes within the systems that sustain and enable industrial civilization, a serious militant resistance movement could seriously disrupt these systems. With some coordination, it could collapse them entirely, leveling the foundation of the oppressive & murderous social structure itself.

This process of strategically selecting and attacking targets and coordinating strikes to sabotage entire global systems is known as ‘systems disruption’. The idea is to leverage the structure and dynamics of the system against itself; identifying and attacking structural weak points, nodes that are critical to functionality, specific bottlenecks in the industrial process without which the larger system cannot function. Striking at these points yields the maximum impact of any attack on a system, and by coordinating attacks to strike at multiple, interconnected and interdependent nodes, a small force can disrupt or disable entire industrial superstructures, such as a national electric grid or international oil extraction/transportation/refining/distribution system.

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