“The Second World War was just finishing; atomic weapons were new; European colonialism was still widespread; there was racial segregation in the United States. I wanted to see what could be done about all that.
“Since then, I have been trying to figure out how nonviolent action can be applied in the real world. Oppressors are almost always far better equipped to apply violence than are their populations. Violence by resisters and in the name of resisters is easier for the regimes to counteract than is nonviolent struggle, so it is foolish to knowingly fight by the means in which your opponents are superior.
“Nonviolent discipline by defiant resisters helps to build the strength of the resistance. “It undermines support for the opponents. At times, the obedience and reliability of the oppressors’ police and troops may be undermined. And in extreme cases, outright mutiny has occurred.
“The situation faced by every group is unique. People must study their situation, their strengths and weaknesses and those of their opponents. All power has its sources, and if you can identify its sources, you can cut them off.”
Gene Sharp, 85, Professor Emeritus of political science at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, USA.
From the pages of COLORS #88 - Protest.