I’m with them

A Guide

A basic guide for effective counter protesting

Today there are a lot of counter protests done towards various alt right and neo-Nazi groups. I’ve been to a lot of these and they frequently involve standing behind a barricade and line of police yelling funny insults at white supremacists. While this can be a great fun time and build solidarity and social connections amongst existing leftist, it does very little to actively disrupt the right wing forces we are counterprotesting. While an overwhelming force of people can physically displace these far right elements, too often we are too few and too spread out to use a completely material methodology. To that end I present: effective counter protesting through swallowing your pride.

I write these tactics especially for my comrades in rural areas who often have very few supportive comrades and are often unable to use mass organizing. The strategy is principally non-violent, although suggests strongly that arming for self-defense in legally available areas is an excellent tactic. The basic idea of this form of counterprotesting involves light infiltration and disruption.

Step one is to locate and extract information about the group which you are counter protesting. This means determining how reactively violent they may be, what weapons they do or don’t have, how many people they are, and what tools/resources/power structures they might have available to them. For example it can be a great benefit to determine if the local police department is actively in cahoots with the group, or if they remain neutral/oppositional. If the group is armed and to what extent. Failing to properly research your target means you could show up with a squad in bloc with clubs only to be gunned down by a Nazi with a binary trigger AR15 and a drum magazine.

Step two is to prepare your disruptive-infiltration force, this is planning for the specific context/action. Decide what forms of disruption you will engage in and plan your infiltration methods. Infiltration means presenting in such a way that you can smoothly and easily enter the crowd in which you are protesting. This can be as simple as a pro gun T shirt and jeans. Infiltration means making yourself obscured to power structures who might be policing/providing physical force for the group, this is an active-ongoing process and might mean telling state authority figures you are “with them”. Use step one’s information gathering to determine what kind of appearance presentation and infiltration tactics will allow you to most easily enter into and disrupt the crowd you are protesting. Along with this, prepare infiltration/exfiltration routes, rendezvous points, and emergency plans in the event of physical violence being directed at you or your comrades. Root your strategy in local knowledge, plan for the worst, don’t be caught unaware.

Step three begins when you have actively walked into the crowd you will be protesting. Making sure to present in such a way that various power structures might see you as “part of them” and therefore be unable to easily separate you from their crew or express police force against you. If any figure with coercive authority (police, statie‘s, private security, troops, etc.) questions your allegiance/affiliation, assert without question that you are “part of them“. Now is the time to begin distracting, disrupting, and confusing. This can involve taking over the live streams of various figures, getting up on speaking stages/microphones, using various flags/signs to obfuscate images of hatred, having de/re-radicalization conversations with particular people you can pick out, refusing to engage in protracted debate with upper ranking fascists and through perceived association acting insuch a way that delegitimizes the movements of Nazis in the eyes of their potential supporters/the public. If you’re able to draw state authority on the group through drawing attention, you can use your pseudo-affiliation to generalize any enforcement pressed against you. In particular, using various wedge issues to produce fractures/forks of the larger group you are protesting. For example, if you are able to open carry a firearm during your counter protesting while also actively supporting things like BLM and trans rights you can drive a wedge in various alt-right groups by splitting them down lines of transphobia/gun rights. As the Anarkata essay written recently attests:

“As the neo fascist climate continues to promote the rise of white nationalisms, knowledge of the enemy is very important, and it is imperative that we can identify the particular nuances of these groups, who they are, and how they function. White vigilante groups are not monolithic, and are not as unified as they appear to be. Each has particular ideological differences and disagreements that can be exploited by us to play these groupings against each other. This kind of subterfuge is another aspect of Black self-defense that we support as Anarkatas calling back to the Anansian role of the trickster. Subterfuge could take the form of false flagging, fake news, false propagandizing, misinformation, infiltration and other means. The building out of our self-defense capacities coupled with subterfuge, can forestall and redirect white supremacist violence away from our communities and back towards our enemies.” https://theanarchistlibrary.org/library/anarkata

Step four is exfiltration/extraction, during such counter protesting various leaders will likely become wise to what you were doing. They may move pieces around to enact violence against you, especially in the absence of video/streaming documentation or the absence of authority figures who might document or prevent outright violence. In one of my own actions, the alt right group I was counter protesting made a plan to flip the vehicle I was sitting in once the local sheriff (in cahoots with the group) had left the scene, planning to at a minimum severely injured me if not kill me. If your action is protracted and runs into the point of the day where the sun is gone, you should have multiple methods of exiting the scene without getting captured/injured. You are more useful to the cause when you are not dead or behind bars.

This counter protesting methodology is not a substitute for other forms of Anarchist Praxis, especially creating systems of dual power, survival economies, and broadbase solidarity amongst left leaning and Anarcho groups. This methodology can be incredibly effective for demoralizing, producing bad optics/press, and driving wedges in various alt right groups. Especially when one does not have the mass mobilization necessary to materially displace these groups. I hope these tactics can be useful, and applied in such a way as to weaken our enemies, the same way in which the alt right has infiltrated and LARPed various left wing groups and aesthetics in order to get bad press and misdirect leftist energy towards ineffective actions.

All power to the people.