A quote from Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe. Goethe was a German poet and natural philosopher, 1749-1832.
This quote is an excerpt is from Book VI called “Martyrdom.” This chapter pertains to “Messages and records of the heroes of past and present who have sacrificed themselves for the sake of the future.”
All those who oppose intellectual truths merely stir up the fire; the cinders fly about and set fire to that which else they had not touched.
Today I have three short quotes for a social protest literature post.
They all are an excerpt is from Book V called “Revolt.” This chapter pertains to “The struggle to abolish injustice; the battle cries of the new army which is gathering for the deliverance of humanity.”
First, Jean Genet, a French playwright and novelist (1910-1986) from “Prisoner of Love”:
The main object of a revolution is the liberation of man…not the interpretation and application of some transcendental ideology.
Second, “The Oath”, an oath taken by thousands of Chinese students occupying Tiananmen Square in June 1989 shortly before the tanks rolled in:
I swear, for the democratic movement and the prosperity of the country, for our motherland not to be overturned by a few conspirators, for our one billion people not to be killed in the white terror, that I am willing to defend Tiananmen Square, defend the republic, with my young life. Our heads can be broken, our blood can be shed, but we will not lose the People’s square. We will fight to the end with the last person.
And lastly, “Moral Persuasion”, by Steven Biko. Biko (1946-1977) was a Black South African political leader who died in police custody:
The power of the movement lies in the fact that it can indeed change the habits of people. This change is not the result of force but of dedication, of moral persuasion.
A great piece in The Guardian on recent Venezuelan unrest with a print and video interview with Pres. Nicolas Maduro.
Maduro claims that the U.S. is almost directly involved with the middle- to upper-class revolt their in an effort to procure Venezuela’s vast oil reserves.
I am not backing that assessment but the U.S. has had a century of destabilizing activity in Latin America. The evidence is clear.
But what is important to take away from this piece, and the protests in general, is that it’s the revolution of the rich. U.S. political assessments of it are wrong. It is not a “Spring” revolt.
Now there are problems in Venezuela, and The Guardian lists them, but they are getting better as The Guardian also reports. It’s like Maduro said in the interview: “What country doesn’t have problems?”
There is no justification in these protests which are a coup attempt to overthrow a democratically elected government without major crime.
This article is about a Palestinian man who died in an Israeli prison after just 5 days of retention and the resulting ignition of a Palestinian protest pitting Israeli soldiers versus stone throwing young people. But the rest of the reported facts in the article show Israel’s true nature when it comes to handling the Palestinians. This entire article must be read.
Tunisian President Moncef Marzouki writes a good op-ed for the NYT stating that the “Arab Spring” is not over and hasn’t had it’s progress rolled-back by recent protests in the region.
He states that the violent protests of the last 2 weeks just involved a very small minority of extremist groups that do not represent the majority of Muslims there. He also maintains that the conversion to democracy still remains the utmost concern in the new Middle East.
A good piece in the NYT on Obama’s character traits and how they have influenced his handling of the Arab Spring.
A great article in the NYT on True the Vote, a national group focused on voter fraud, and their actions in many minority voting districts in swing states. It also covers how True the Vote and similar groups have no proof of the massive voter fraud they claim is rampant across the nation. They are just their to prevent and intimidate the minority vote.