“Today to be ‘violent’ or a ‘terrorist’ is a quality that ennobles any honorable person, because it is an act worthy of a revolutionary engaged in armed struggle against the shameful military dictatorship and its atrocities.”
These words were written by Carlos Marighella in his Mini-Manual of the Urban Guerrilla. Marighella was killed in 1969. The West German guerrilla group Red Army Faction, after years of armed struggle, proclaimed in 1998, “The urban guerrilla in the shape of the RAF is now history.” I conjure up these examples of Marighella and the RAF to make a point: I think as times and conditions have changed, we are in need of a new kind of guerrilla. The term “guerrilla” is usually associated, again as in the aforementioned examples, with guerrilla warfare, or armed struggle. But being a “guerrilla” doesn’t necessitate one who immediately goes to the gun as the definition of the word implies:
“referring to actions or activities performed in an impromptu way, often without authorization.”
Currently, there are still armed guerrilla movements active across the world, such as the FARC in Colombia or the Naxalite insurgency in India. These groups are engaged in a deadlock with their respective governments. As mentioned earlier, the RAF decided to change their methodology and admit that they had to go beyond their previously dogmatic perspectives. Yes truthfully some situations will create armed conflict not for the sake of but just as a natural consequence to the situation such as African colonialism. Those armed conflicts, according to Dr. Frantz Fanon, has as much to do with the human empowerment of the colonized as it did with armed conflict, but that can be discussed elsewhere. In these modern times being a guerrilla has expanded far beyond the armed front. In this day and age of the Internet and technology, there are new guerrillas fighting the same campaigns as the guerrillas of old. The weapons have changed and so have the fronts. The weapons are creativity and the fronts are the minds of people. These new guerrillas do not use guns and artillery, but use the pen, art, music, speech, subversion, civil resistance and technology. It can be something as simple as downloading a movie, which siphons power away from the film industry conglomerates, you are engaging in guerrilla action. When you upload videos on the net exposing the ways of the superstructure, you are a engaging in guerrilla action. When you use art for resistance and protest, you are an art guerrilla, engaging in guerrilla action. When you teach a spirituality apart from the established, organized religion, you’re a spiritual guerrilla, engaging in guerrilla action. I’m sure you understand. Anyone can be a guerrilla in their own way and engage in guerrilla activity. And no matter how seemingly small or innocuous the action is, it is not as your actions are not isolated; all of these small acts from so many different places compound and form a collevtive guerrilla action. When they are coalesced, collevtive guerrilla action has the power to knock down the walls of the mind and heart as well as the walls that are built on the outside.