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The Earth Liberation Front (ELF), also known as "Elves" or "The Elves",[1] is the collective name for anonymous and autonomous individuals or covert cells who, according to the ELF Press Office, use "economic sabotage and guerrilla warfare to stop the exploitation and destruction of the environment". [2] The intellectual underpinnings rationalizing such actions is known as Rewilding.

The ELF was founded in Brighton in the United Kingdom in 1992[3] and spread to the rest of Europe by 1994. It is now an international movement with attacks reported in 17 countries[4][5][6] and is widely regarded as the Animal Liberation Front's younger sister, because of the relationship and cooperation between the two movements.[7] Using the same leaderless resistance model, as well as similar guidelines to the ALF,[3] sympathizers say that it is an eco-defense group dedicated to taking the profit motive out of environmental destruction by causing economic damage to businesses through the use of direct action.[8]

The ELF was classified as the top domestic terror threat in the United States by the FBI in March 2001,[9][10] and are categorised as "eco-terrorists".[11] The ELF's guidelines require that individuals or groups acting on its behalf "take all necessary precautions against harming any animal — human and nonhuman."[12] On the lack of deaths from ELF attacks, the FBI's deputy assistant director for counterterrorism has said, "I think we're lucky. Once you set one of these fires they can go way out of control."[13] The name came to public prominence when they were featured on the television show 60 Minutes in 2005.[14]

Contents

Structure and aims

Dr. Steven Best co-edited Igniting a Revolution: Voices in Defense of Earth (2006), which includes essays by convicted environmental terrorists Jeff Luers, Noel Molland and Craig Marshall. He is also a professor of philosophy at the University of Texas and co-founded the Animal Liberation Press Office in North America.
Rod Coronado is a spokesman for the ELF and has been involved in ALF actions such as; the sinking of whaling ships, the release of animals from fur farms and several acts of arson. In 2006 he was charged as part of the FBI's "Operation Backfire", referred to by radical environmentalists as the "Green Scare" defendants.

ELF "monkeywrenching" is carried out against facilities and companies involved in logging, genetic engineering, GMO crops, deforestation, SUV sales, urban sprawl, rural cluster and developments with larger homes, energy production and distribution, and a wide variety of other activities, all charged by the ELF with exploiting the Earth, its environment and inhabitants.[15][16]

The Earth Liberation Front has no formal leadership, hierarchy, membership or official spokesperson and is entirely decentralized; instead consisting of individuals or cells who choose the term as a banner to use. Individuals are commonly known to work in affinity groups, known as cells, and are usually self-funded.[15][16]

Techniques involve destruction of property, by either using tools to disable or the use of arson to destroy, what activists believe is being used to injure animals, people or the environment. These actions are sometimes called ecotage and there are marked differences between their actions in the United States and the United Kingdom.

Jeff "Free" Luers, who is serving a ten year sentence for the firebombing of SUV's at a dealership, which was revised from twenty-two years and ten months,[17] describes why the ELF exists and why they have kept by the guidelines that were initially published for the movement:[18]

ELF's goal is to stop practices that are incredibly harmful to the environment and to help create environmental sustainability.

There is a reason that ELF and similar groups have come into existence. They have received the support of many mainstream people because of the effectiveness of their tactics.

More important, ELF has received so much support because in a world prone to violence, the ELF has stuck by its code: Never place life in danger of harm.

With many different reasons why ELF activists carry out economic sabotage, a communique to the press claiming the responsibility for an arson against urban sprawl in December 2000, described the reason a cell the took an action. As Elves usually do, they claimed that burning down the house was non-violent, because it was searched for any living creatures; an issue which is much debated within the environmental movement.[19]

There are over six billion people on this planet of which almost a third are either starving, or living in poverty. Building homes for the wealthy should not even be a priority.

Forests, farms and wetlands are being replaced with a sea of houses, green chemical lawns, blacktop, and roadkill. Farmland is being bought out by land developers because of their inability to compete with cheap corporate, genetically-engineered, pesticide saturated food. The time has come to decide what is more important: the planet and the health of its population or the profits of those who destroy it.

Any direct action to halt the destruction of the environment and adhering to the strict non-violent guidelines, can be considered an ELF action. Economic sabotage and property destruction are the primary focus of the published guidelines:[1][15][20]

  • To inflict maximum economic damage on those profiting from the destruction and exploitation of the environment (biophysical).
  • To reveal to, and to educate the public about the atrocities committed against the earth and all species that populate it.
  • To take all necessary precautions against harming any animal - human and non-human.
"Stop Urban Sprawl" is spray-painted on a multi-million dollar house to protest the development. McMansions in the United States are a frequent target by the ELF.

Some of the most common and notable attacks are against the development of multi-million dollar houses, known as McMansions, a frequent target in the ELF campaign. In a communique to the ELF Press Officer in North America, that was later published in The Environmental Magazine, the group declared in 2001:[21]

Urban sprawl has undoubtedly served to alter nearly 90 percent of Long Island's habitats, either by physically removing them, paving them, or polluting them with toxic man-made materials, making them either undesirable or unsustainable for most species.

Press office

The North American Earth Liberation Front Press Office (NAELFPO or ELFPO) was relaunched in October 2008, receiving anonymous communiques from activists, for distributing to the press and public, to discuss the motives, ideologies and history behind such actions.[22]

Craig Rosebraugh served as an unofficial spokesperson for the ELF Press Office in North America from 1997 to early September 2001.[23] Doubts have been raised about whether Rosebraugh or other unofficial spokespeople actually have ties to the cells involved,[24] although the press office claim they do not know the identities of ELF members.[22]

Support networks

Prisoner support networks support ELF prisoners, such as Spirit of Freedom (ELPSN), an English website listing all earth liberation prisoners, as well as a variety of other prisoners of conscience. There are also ELF support networks in Belgium, Italy, North America, and Poland, which collectively coordinate the support of prisoners, as well as websites for specific prisoners, such as for; Rod Coronado, Jeff "Free" Luers, Daniel McGowan, Briana Waters and Tre Arrow.[25] The networks distribute literature written by those in prison, to their supporters and other support groups, and sometimes raise funds for those who require financial aid in their cases.[26]

Philosophy

Radical environmentalists, that claim to be earth liberationists, range from a diversity of individuals with a variety of different ideologies as well as theories. These include; animal liberationists, anti-capitalists, green anarchists, deep ecologists, eco-feminists, and anti-globalisationists.[27]

Elves argue that illegal direct action is required in order to aid the earth liberation movement, also referred to as eco-resistance movement, and a part of the radical environmental movement. The ELF claim that it would be similar to how the ALF has projected forward the animal liberation movement. There was also the intention that in the same way animal liberationists "help out" with legal campaigns, earth liberationists would aid above-ground environmental organisations, notably Earth First!, by acts of ecotage.[28]

Origin

United Kingdom

The symbol of Earth First!: a Monkey wrench and stone hammer.

The Earth Liberation Front was founded in 1992 in Brighton, England by members of the Earth First! (EF!) environmental movement at the first ever national meeting. At the time, EF! had become very popular, so people's concerns were based on maintaining this popularity and by doing so not associating with overt law breaking. There was no universal agreement over this, but it was accepted amongst the movement that British EF! would instead continue to advocate and focus on civil disobedience and mass demonstrations.[3] If people wanted to participate in acts of ecotage, the new name "Earth Liberation Front" would be used, with its name and guidelines derived from the Animal Liberation Front (ALF), another movement that uses direct action to liberate animals or sabotage companies using them. It was understood that the simplicity of the guidelines was a crucial factor in order to engage as many people as possible to the new cause, with the intention that the ELF would quickly become as popular as the ALF.[29]

Earth Night

The very first ELF action is unknown, or undocumented, but one of the first and most notable actions was on April Fool's Earth Night 1992, a night organised by activists to carry out ecotage and also one of the first of them. The Elves, as they were also known, targeted Fisons, a peat company accused of destroying the peat bogs causing £50,000-70,000 worth of damage. Pumps, trucks and other machinery belonging to the company were destroyed after legal campaigners, Friends of the Earth, spent two years advocating a boycott of the company. Green Anarchist magazine publicised the communique with the demands from the ELF:[30]

All our peat bogs must be preserved in their entirety, for the sake of the plants, the animals and our national heritage. Cynically donating small amounts will do no good. The water table will drop, and the bogs will dry out and die, unless it is preserved fully. Fisons must leave all of it alone - now!

EF! Journal

In the September–October 1993 issue of the Earth First! Journal, an anonymous article announced the creation of the ELF in England. It said the ELF is a movement of independently operating eco-saboteurs that split from the British EF! movement, which has focused directly on public direct actions. The author noted that, unlike the ALF which seeks publicity: "ELF cells, for security reasons, work without informing the press and do not claim responsibility for actions."

Development of the ELF abroad

Europe

The ELF quickly spread across to Europe by 1994, with actions first occurring in Holland, Germany, Russia, Scandinavia, New Zealand, Italy, Ireland, Poland, Spain, France and Finland, and the name starting to be used across the globe.[4][6] The Earth Liberation Front is widely regarded as the Animal Liberation Front's younger sister, because of the relationship and cooperation between the two movements.[7] It is believed that cells rapidly established themselves in new countries because of the global outreach of Earth First! and the connection between the two groups.[31] British Elves were also making contact with like-minded activists, informing them about the ELF and its tactics, with missionaries targeting specifically France, Spain, Germany and Holland.

Within two years, McDonalds had been vandalised in Germany and Poland, Amsterdam Airport and been sabotaged with cars trashed and hunting towers were destroyed in Holland and Germany, presumably inspired by similar actions against hunting by the ALF.[32]

North America

Further information: North American Earth Liberation Front Press Office

Canadian ELA

The first time it was known that an earth liberation action had happened in North America, was in 1995, in Canada, by a group calling itself the Earth Liberation Army (ELA).[33] They were considered by the European Elves at the time to be "transatlantic cousins". On 19 June 1995, the ELA burned down a wildlife museum and damaged a hunting lodge in British Columbia.[34]

United States

On Columbus Day 1996, activists spraypainted "504 years of genocide" and "ELF" on the walls of a public relations office, as well as a McDonalds restaurant in Oregon, the actions were the very first by the ELF in the United States. The same restaurant then had its locks glued and spraypainted again, but this time in support of the British McLibel Two, two activists who had distributed anti-McDonalds leaflets. The next day, it was reported that another two McDonalds restaurants, again in Oregon, had their locks glued by ELF activists.[34][35] The only other reported action of the year was on Christmas Day, when a fur farm was raided in Michigan and 150 mink released into the wild by the Great Lakes ELF.[36]

Mexico

In late November 2008, a group calling itself eco-anarquista por el ataque directo (Eco-anarchist cell for direct attack) claimed responsibility for a number of recent actions, including: half a dozen Molotov cocktails thrown at tren férreo (metro rail) in Mexico City, Incendiary sabotage against Telmex, a Molotov cocktail thrown at a Banamex ATM. These attacks were claimed to have taken place “as a form of 'protest' against the construction of a new rail line (line 12), in Mexico City (D.F.) and Mexico State; already because of its construction many trees were cut down, entire families evicted and land expropriated with large hectares of green areas subsequently deforested.”[37]

Soon after this initial group of actions, the Frente de Liberación de la Tierra (Earth Liberation Front) claimed responsibility for a number of actions including the sabotage of a construction machine on December 30 2008[38], arson at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM)[39] and the March 22nd, 2009 arson of construction equipment in Guadalajara, Jalisco.[40]

Notable attacks: 1998-2009

1998/1999

The ELF gained national attention for a series of actions which earned them the label of eco-terrorists,[11] and one of the top domestic terror threats in the United States.[9] This came after the burning of a ski resort in Vail, Colorado, on October 19, costing $12 million.[41] In a communique to the press, the ELF said:[42]

Vail, Inc. is already the largest ski operation in North America and now wants to expand even further. The 12 miles (19 km) of roads and 885 acres (3.58 km2) of clearcuts will ruin the last, best lynx habitat in the state. Putting profits ahead of Colorado's wildlife will not be tolerated.

Actions also included sabotaging power lines, the burning of an SUV dealership and the burning down of a logging headquarters causing $1 million in damages. The Elves wrote to the local paper "Let this be a lesson to all greedy multinational corporations who don't respect their ecosystems,"[41] with most actions taking place in Oregon. The defendants in the case were later charged in the FBI's "Operation Backfire", which included 17 acts of property destruction.[43]

The ELF then set fire to the Michigan State University on New Years Eve, using a gasoline bomb to cause $1.1 million in damages, because of their GMO-engineering. The next day, commercial logging equipment was set on fire, with "ELF" and "Go Log in Hell" spraypainted on a truck. In March 2008, four activists were charged for both the arsons.[44] On November 27, in Oregon, the ELF burned the Legend Ridge mansion and sent a message to the Boulder Weekly saying "Viva la revolution!" Damages were estimated at $2.5 million.[45]

2000

In March, a total of thirty SUVs were torched, belonging to Joe Romania's dealership, in Oregon, with damages estimated at $1 million. The action was claimed in support of Jeff "Free" Luers, who targeted the very same dealership and was in court for the charges at the time.[46] He was then sentenced to twenty-two years in jail, later revised to ten.

2001

On May 21, a fire destroyed laboratories, offices and archives at the Center for Urban Horticulture, University of Washington, causing a total of $7 million in damages.[47] The arson destroyed 20 years of research and plant and book collections. The ELF claimed responsibility based upon the incorrect belief that the University was involved in genetic engineering of poplar trees [48]. No genetic engineering was being conducted. In the wake of the attack, an FBI spokeswoman in Portland, Oregon said "I don't think there's any doubt the ELF is upping the ante".[49]

On November 21, ELF member Ian Wallace planted incendiary devices outside of two buildings on the campus of Michigan Technological University in Houghton, Michigan during the early morning hours. The devices failed, and on March 21, 2009, Wallace was sentenced to three years in prison for the incident by Judge Robert Holmes Bell,[50] who said Wallace "didn't intend to hurt anybody, (but) this is a serious offense."[51] Said Wallace after his conviction, "I have been consumed by shame for what I have done," Wallace said. "My greatest blessing is that no one got hurt." [52]

2003

On August 1, a 206-unit condominium in San Diego was destroyed, with a banner left at the scene saying "If you build it, we will burn it", signed "The E.L.F.s are mad".[53] The damages totaled $50 million[54] after flames reached an estimated 200 feet (61 m) in the air, as over a hundred fire fighters attempted to put out the fire. The destruction was the movements most financially damaging action against a target, with a local preservation group calling the action pointless, noting that "You can go and burn something down, but it's just going to get built again."[53] Exactly three weeks later, 125 SUVs and hummers were torched, costing a total of $3.5 million, with "I love pollution" spray-painted at the scene,[55] and a month later homes being built in San Diego were targeted again, this time costing an estimated $450,000 in damages.[56]

2005

The FBI's most recent report stated that there had been over 1,200 "criminal incidents",[31] within January 2006. A nearly completed 9,600-square-foot (890 m2) house, worth $3 million, was burnt to the ground in Washington. The Herald Net reported that a bedsheet was drapped across the front gate, with a threatening message spray-painted on it.[57]

On March 23 2009, The ELF claim the burning of an excavator in Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico State. In one of many recent anonymous communiques, the ELF reported to Bite Back; "Maybe we have not collapsed the system of domination with these actions, but it begins with actions like these."[5][58][59][60]
2008

One of the latest ELF arsons was reported on the morning of March 3, when explosive devices set fire to four multi-million dollar homes from the 2007 Seattle Street of Dreams in Echo Lake, Washington, costing $7 million in damage.[61] Authorities described the act as "domestic terrorism" after finding "ELF" spray-painted in red letters, mocking claims that the homes were environmentally friendly: "Built Green? Nope black! McMansions in RCDs r not green. ELF."[62] A criminology professor replied saying: "The real unfortunate thing is many citizens will empathize with ELF because their goal is the environment."[63]

2009

On March 23 the ELF claim the burning of an excavator in Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico State. In one of many recent anonymous communiques, the ELF reported to Bite Back; "Maybe we have not collapsed the system of domination with these actions, but it begins with actions like these."[64]

On September 4 ELF claimed responsibility for using a stolen excavator to overturn two AM radio towers belonging to station KRKO near Seattle, Washington; they claimed that radio waves are dangerous.[65]

A Texas man was arrested after construction workers found a disabled construction vehicle grafiteed with the words "ANOTHER TRACTOR DECOMMISSIONED BY THE E.L.F." [66]

Other movements

ELA and Environmental Rangers

Further reading: Earth Liberation Army (ELA)

The first major report of a name other than ELF being used to claim ecotage was in October 1998, when the Earth Liberation Army (ELA) claimed to be responsible for causing $12 million in damages to Vail Ski Resort by setting fire to several buildings and four chairlifts.[67]

Two years later, in Oregon, four SUVs were completely destroyed by placing jugs of gas under the vehicles, with the ELA calling for others to "[c]ontinue the fight to remove the profit motive from the killing of the environment (biophysical)." Jeff Luers was later convicted of arson, as part of the Operation Backfire case, along with other ALF and ELF defendants.[68] There have also been other groups that have caused similar damage as the ELF, with in 2001 reports that "eco-terrorist" attacks, known as "ecotage" had increased. These included the ELF, the ELA, and another name being used the "Environmental Rangers" who use similar tactics.[69] Activists have also used the names "The Moles", "The Grey Wolves", "Westcountry Wildlife Cell", "Eco-Animal Defense Unit" and "Radical Brigades for Ecological Defence", as well as others.[16]

Environmental Life Force

ELF logo

The Environmental Life Force, was the first radical group to use explosive and incendiary devices to promote pro-environment causes, also known as the Original ELF. It was founded by John Hanna, who was the only member of the group to be arrested and convicted for the use of explosives on federal property.[11] Although it was an eco-guerilla entity with similar philosophies to the current ELF (Earth Liberation Front), which formed fifteen years later, there was no formal link between the two groups, and founders of the Earth Liberation Front may not have even been aware of the existence of the Environmental Life Force.[11] Despite this, it has acknowledged in written communications that Dave Foreman, who founded Earth First! three years after the original ELF, was in communication with Hanna in the mid 1980s, before the Earth Liberation Front was founded, which was after Foreman cut ties with the Earth First! movement.[70]

Police response, and convictions

First ELF arrest

Further information: Earth Liberation Prisoners Support Network

In 1994, Dutch authorities and police made claims that British ELF activists were travelling abroad to cause sabotage, which were disputed by the organization, with later that year the first ELP activist being caught and later charged. Known as Paul S., he was arrested and accused of carrying out an 18-month campaign of vandalism in Holland against road construction sites. The Dutch government attempted to declare him insane, because of his inability to provide a political reason for his actions, other than his care for the environment. This was unsuccessful and the prisoner was sentenced to three years for damaging property.[4]

British police raids

Due to the increased popularity of the environmental movement, as well as the animal liberation movement and estimates that five ALF actions occurred per day, police carried out a series of raids against animal rights and environmental activists. In total, there were 55 homes raided against suspected ALF and ELF activists, including an individual in Italy. The police had not managed to charge anyone with any illegal activities, until on January 16, 1996, when six men were charged for a five year ALF/ELF campaign. They were sentenced a year later each to three years for conspiracy to incite direct action in the name of animal and earth liberation.[4]

Operation Backfire

Daniel G. McGowan was charged for two counts of arson and conspiracy in the FBI's "Operation Backfire". He pleaded guilty to avoid a life sentence, without testifying against his co-defendants, some of whom had done so against him.

The term Green Scare, alluding to the Red Scares, periods of fear over communist infiltration of U.S. society, is a term popularized by environmental activists to refer to legal action by the U.S. government against the radical environmentalist movement.

It is first known to have appeared in 2002 in the wake of the February 12 congressional hearings titled "The Threat of Eco-Terrorism" which discussed groups including the Earth Liberation Front (ELF) and the Animal Liberation Front (ALF).[10] In late 2005 and early 2006, as part of Operation Backfire, US grand juries indicted a total of 18 activists on a range of charges related to "violent acts in the name of animal rights and environmental causes".[71] According to the FBI, many of these acts were carried out on behalf of the ELF[41] and was considered as one of the largest arrests of environmental activists in American history.[72]

The operation resulted in the arrest of Chelsea Dawn Gerlach, William C. Rodgers, and Daniel McGowan.[73]

In 2008, the FBI increased the reward for handing over four suspects to $50,000. The four, two Americans and two Canadians, are believed to have fled the U.S. through Mexico and are possibly hiding in Syria, Russia, China or India. The announcement of an increased manhunt came on the tenth anniversary of the bombing in Vail.[74]

Cooperation with the ALF

Philosophy

Further information: Earth liberation, Animal liberation, Ecocentrism, Biocentrism and Deep ecology

The name "Animal & Earth Liberation Front" or "Earth & Animal Liberation Front" (ALF and ELF, respectively) is commonly used when undertaking an animal liberation action, that is inclusively an environmental issue. Or alternatively an ELF action that includes in some way liberating or rescuing animals; for example actions to protect the forests.[3][7] Both names are also used by radical activists when engaging in direct action to liberate animals and defend the earth by using property destruction. This is done within the guidelines of the Animal/Earth Liberation Front; to claim the action by both groups.[36][75]

  • Radical environmentalists consider the ELF to be the environmental wing of the Animal Liberation Front, effectively acting as the Eco-ALF.[28] Evidence of this include names used such as the "Westcountry Wildlife Cell" and then later "ALF: Eco-Animal Defense Unit".[36]
  • The ELF is also considered to be the ALF's younger sister,[7] forming 16 years later and due to the fact that the guidelines, as well as the name itself, were derived from the movement.[3]
  • Despite the movements only forming alliances in 1996/1997, activists such as Rod Coronado were known to be active in both the ALF and ELF dating back before the names were officially used together.[76]

Noel Molland, a former ELF activist, writes in Steven Best's Igniting a Revolution that:[3]

The founders of the ELF wanted radical environmentalists to work on the same basis and have a similar name, hoping that people would instantly understand how the ELF operated and what its goals were.

History

An ALF raid on a mink farm in Rome, Italy

During the mid 1990s, the Western Wildlife Unit, an ELF branch in Britain, were responsible for various acts of animal rights themed direct action. The ecotages included spiking trees as well as targeting anglers, all in the name of wooldand animals. However, it wasn't until sometime later, in the United States, that a joint claim of responsibility was made.

Molland also writes that the first established ALF and ELF action was established on March 14, 1997, when the "Animal Liberation Front - Eco-Animal Defense Unit" claimed the spiking of 47 trees in a clearcut area, Oregon. This was only a few months after the fur farm had been raided by the Great Lakes ELF, which also highlighted the overlap in direct action for animal rights and environmentalism.[36] The groups intention was to state that the farm they had raided was a joint effort between members of the Animal and Earth Liberation Front.

Five days later, the "Bay Area Cell of the Earth and Animal Liberation Front" claimed the fire bombing of the University of California, an animal research laboratory that was still under construction at the time.[46] Also later that year, on November 29, there was another joint ALF & ELF claim, this time releasing 500 wild horses and torching the Bureau of Land Management in Burns, in protest of BLM's intention to round up the wild horses and process them for the sale of horsemeat.[36][62]

However, this claim contradicts the Southern Poverty Law Center, which states that the first incident of cooperation between the two movements was 6 months prior to these events on October 27, 1996, when the ALF & ELF were both responsible for firebombing a Forest Service truck in Detroit, Oregon. Then three days later both groups claimed the arson at the U.S. Forest Service Oakridge Ranger Station, at the cost of $5.3 million.

An ALF raid removing 82 beagles and 26 rabbits from Interfauna in Cambridge on St Patrick's Night 1990 by Keith Mann and Barry Horne.[77]

It was then reported that a week before the Bay Area cells fur farm raid, on March 11, 1997, four trucks were torched, at the Agricultural Fur Breeders Co-Op. The damage totaled $1 million and the action was again claimed by the ALF & ELF.[46]

As the ELF was becoming well established through its own actions, on 21 June 1998, the United States Forest Service wildlife research centre near Olympia, Washington was set on fire with "Eco-Defense" and "Earth Liberation" spray painted on construction machinery, which had received extensive damage in New Jersey on the 2nd July. Both the actions were claimed jointly by the ALF & ELF, and were estimated to have caused one of the worst damages yet, estimated at $1.9 million. The same claim was made when 310 animals were taken from a fur farm involved in experimental research based in Madison, Wisconsin, which were stolen the day later.[62][78]

Actions

Timeline of Animal Liberation Front actions: 2000-2004 and 2005-Present

Actions claimed by both the ALF and ELF jointly has appeared across the globe, nearly as much as the ELF has, causing more activists from the ALF and other movements to become involved; believing in "No Compromise in Defence of Mother Earth",[78] a popular Earth First! slogan used and populated in the 1980s.[79]

Despite this, in comparison to the ALF, there have been few communiques in recent years that have been released to the media or ELF Press Offices. This is largely due to the style of the ELF, whom are much less likely to report their actions, or even leave a message to notify their targets regarding why they have been attacked.[32]

A fire by an ALF cell; the Oxford Arson Squad, causing £500,000 in damages to Londbridges boathouse, Oxfordshire on 4 July 2005.

Although ALF and ELF combined actions have continued,[80] one of the latest string of jointly claimed arsons[81] was publicised was in November 2002, when activists sent a communique to Bite Back and also the ELF Press Office, claiming responsibility for the arson at Mindek Brothers Fur Farm.[82] In a press release, the groups stated the reason for their action:[83][84]

Working together, cells from A.L.F. & E.L.F. demolished this feed facility due to its role in the systematic torture and killing of thousands of innocent creatures yearly - animals which possess the same complex emotional/physiological traits as loved household pets, yet are denied all reasonable consideration and confined to a miserable "existence" in tiny wire cages hardly large enough to turn around in.

In popular culture

  • Folk musician David Rovics performs a song dedicated to the ELF called "Song for the Earth Liberation Front"[85]
  • In the 2004 novel by Michael Crichton, State of Fear, a fictional group based on the Earth Liberation Front, but called the Environmental Liberation Front instead, is the main villain.
  • In the novel by Nicholas Evans, The Divide, a main character is involved in ELF activities.

Criticism

Further information: Eco-terrorism

The FBI designated the ELF as "eco-terrorists."[11] Representative Scott McInnis, then chairman of the US House Subcommittee on Forests and Forest Health, subpoenaed Craig Rosebraugh in an effort to investigate the ELF's activities. On hearing Rosebraugh's testimony, McInnis suggested it was "luck" no one has been killed by an ELF (or ALF) attack.[86]

Despite the leaderless nature of the movement, the FBI says that activist Rod Coronado is "a national leader" of the ELF in the USA, while Coronado describes himself as an "unofficial ELF spokesman".[87]

Referring to the Earth Liberation Front and the Animal Liberation Front, ATF Deputy Assistant Director Carson Carrol has said, "The most worrisome trend to law enforcement and private industry alike has been the increase in willingness by these movements to resort to the use of incendiary and explosive devices."[88] In 2005, the FBI announced that the ELF, is America's greatest domestic terrorist threat, responsible for over 1,200 "criminal incidents" amounting to tens of millions of dollars in damage to property.[31] The United States Department of Homeland Security confirmed that the Animal Liberation Front and Earth Liberation Front are the most serious threats to the nation.[88]

It has also been claimed the ELF's actions harm the environment, a spokesman for the Vail Ski Resort, which the ELF fire bombed in 1998 in protest of a planned extension, explained, "more logs were used to rebuild the resort than were cut for the [original] expansion".[86] In 2001 the ELF targeted the University of Washington's Center for Urban Horticulture with the aim of disrupting research into genetic engineering. However, the targeted researcher was investigating hybridization in poplar trees, and the resulting fire killed a significant number of endangered plants.[89]

ELF was also featured in commentator Bernard Goldberg's book 100 People Who Are Screwing Up America as #23, "The Unknown American Terrorist". They were listed and criticised for damaging property and acting like a terrorist group in the name of saving the environment.[90]

Further reading

  • Best, Steven and Nocella, Anthony J. Igniting a Revolution: Voices in Defense of the Earth, AK Press, 2006. ISBN 1-904859-56-9
  • Leslie Pickering. Earth Liberation Front: 1997-2002, Arissa Media Group, 2006. ISBN 0-974288-40-3.
  • Rosebraugh, Craig. Burning Rage of a Dying Planet: Speaking for the Earth Liberation Front Lantern Books, 2004. ISBN 1-59056-064-7

See also

References

  1. ^ a b Best, Steven and Best & Nocella. Igniting a Revolution: Voices in Defense of the Earth, Lantern Books, 2006, p.50.
  2. ^ SUV Armageddon Approaching?, Car Keys, 29 August 2003.
  3. ^ a b c d e f Best, Steven and Best & Nocella. Igniting a Revolution: Voices in Defense of the Earth, Lantern Books, 2006, p. 49.
  4. ^ a b c d Best, Steven and Best & Nocella. Igniting a Revolution: Voices in Defense of the Earth, Lantern Books, 2006, p. 19, 52 & 53.
  5. ^ a b Diary of Earth Liberation Actions 2006-2008, Earth Liberation Front Press Office, 2006-2008.
  6. ^ a b ELF actions have been reported in; Australia, Canada, Colombia, Finland, France, Germany, Holland, Ireland, Italy, New Zealand, Poland, Russia, Scandinavia, Spain, Sweden, United Kingdom and United States.
  7. ^ a b c d Updates from the Frontlines: ALF and ELF, San Diego Indymedia, January 10, 2003.
  8. ^ Article:405, Arkangel
  9. ^ a b Earth Liberation Front is now FBI's No. 1: Mainstream media finally pick up on the concern of ecoterrorism, Property Rights Foundation of America, Inc, March 2001.
  10. ^ a b Congressional Testimony: "The Threat of Eco-Terrorism", FBI, February 12, 2002.
  11. ^ a b c d e Original ELF
  12. ^ What is the Earth Liberation Front?, Satya, March 2004.
  13. ^ ATF address domestic terrorism, FBI, May 19, 2005.
  14. ^ Burning Rage: Reports On Extremists Now Deemed Biggest Domestic Terror Threat, CBS, November 10, 2005.
  15. ^ a b c Profile: Earth Liberation Front, MIPT Terrorism Knowledge Base.
  16. ^ a b c Best, Steven and Best & Nocella. Igniting a Revolution: Vioices in Defense of the Earth, Lantern Books, 2006, p. 54.
  17. ^ The Battle of Bear Creek: New Threat in Americas Backyard, The Independent, March 5, 2008.
  18. ^ Luers, Jeff. Extreme Actions, Free Free Now, March 27, 2002.
  19. ^ Best, Steven and Best & Nocella. Igniting a Revolution: Voices in Defense of the Earth, Lantern Books, 2006, p. 410.
  20. ^ Collectively written. Earth First! National Meeting, Brighton, 1992.
  21. ^ Burning Down The Houses, The Environmental Magazine, May 2001.
  22. ^ a b "North American Earth Liberation Front Press Office" (Shockwave Flash). http://www.elfpressoffice.org/main.html. Retrieved November 11, 2008.  
  23. ^ Craig Subpoenaed to Federal Grand Jury in Eugene; ELF Investigation Continues, Portland Indymedia, February 15, 2006.
  24. ^ Earth to ELF: Come In, Please, LA Weekly, December 22, 2005.
  25. ^ Prisoner support websites include:
  26. ^ About: Spirit of Freedom, Earth Liberation Prisoners Support Network.
  27. ^ Manes, Christopher, 1990. Green Rage: Radical Environmentalism and the Unmaking of Civilization, Boston: Little, Brown and Co.
  28. ^ a b Best, Steven and Best & Nocella. Igniting a Revolution: Voices in Defense of the Earth, Lantern Books, 2006, p. 50 & 51.
  29. ^ FIRE, Greenfield.
  30. ^ Best, Steven and Best & Nocella. Igniting a Revolution: Voices in Defense of the Earth, Lantern Books, 2006, p. 51 & 52.
  31. ^ a b c Best, Steven and Best & Nocella. Igniting a Revolution: Voices in Defense of the Earth, Lantern Books, 2006, p. 47.
  32. ^ a b Best, Steven and Best & Nocella. Igniting a Revolution: Voices in Defense of the Earth, Lantern Books, 2006, p. 52.
  33. ^ Globe and Mail, Toronto, 12 July 1995.
  34. ^ a b Best, Steven and Best & Nocella. Igniting a Revolution: Voices in Defense of the Earth, Lantern Books, 2006, p. 55.
  35. ^ Diary of Actions of the Earth Liberation Front 1996-2001, reposted by Portland Indymedia.
  36. ^ a b c d e Best, Steven and Best & Nocella. Igniting a Revolution: Voices in Defense of the Earth, Lantern Books, 2006, p. 56.
  37. ^ http://www.directaction.info/news_nov29_08.htm
  38. ^ http://www.directaction.info/news_dec30_08.htm
  39. ^ http://www.anarchistnews.org/?q=node/6383
  40. ^ http://news.infoshop.org/article.php?story=20090326173613991
  41. ^ a b c Eco-Terror Incictments: 'Operation Backfire' Nets 11, FBI, 20 January 2006.
  42. ^ The reactionary implications of "eco-terrorism", World Socalist Web Site, October 30, 1998.
  43. ^ Defendents plead guilty in Operation Backfire case, FBI, November 9, 2006.
  44. ^ 4 linked to radical group indicted in MSU arson, Detroit Free Press, March 11, 2008.
  45. ^ ELF, Center for the Defense of Free Enterprise.
  46. ^ a b c Eco-Violence: The Record, Southern Poverty Law Center.
  47. ^ [1], Seattle Times, May 21, 2001.
  48. ^ ELF members gained nothing by the UW arson, and so much was lost, Crosscut.com, May 30, 2008
  49. ^ Earth Liberation Front, stepping up arson campaign, Associated Press, June 2, 2001.
  50. ^ http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5iytjBWLjA8GW5b802hk1LB8DEANwD972AMB01
  51. ^ http://www.mininggazette.com/page/content.detail/id/504429.html?nav=5006
  52. ^ http://www.leadertelegram.com/story-news.asp?id=BLBBRTDK031
  53. ^ a b Militant group suspected of torching condo project, Sign On San Diego, August 2, 2003.
  54. ^ EcoTerrorism, Freedom's Zone, January 10, 2008.
  55. ^ Eco protesters and US anti-terror law, The Guardian, March 2, 2005.
  56. ^ Unfinished homes destroyed; banners point to militant environmental group ELF, Sign on San Diego, September 20, 2003.
  57. ^ ELF arson in Washington, Bombs and Shields, January 19, 2006.
  58. ^ Earth-destroying machine burned, Bite Back, March 23 2009.
  59. ^ Earth Liberation Front Communique: 03.22.09, Earth Liberation Front Press Office, March 2009.
  60. ^ Diary of Earth Liberation Actions 2009, Earth Liberation Front Press Office, 2009.
  61. ^ Luxury Homes Burn in Apparent Eco-Attack, Associated Press, March 3, 2008.
  62. ^ a b c 'Street of Dreams' homes torched; eco-terrorists suspected, Seattle pi, March 3, 2008.
  63. ^ Arson a hallmark of the Earth Liberation Front, Herald Net, March 4, 2008.
  64. ^ Bite Back, March 23, 2009
  65. ^ "Activists topple towers, claim dangers of AM radio waves". CNN. 2009-09-04. http://www.cnn.com/2009/CRIME/09/04/washington.towers.terrorism/index.html.  
  66. ^ http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,559201,00.html
  67. ^ waste & abuse - controversy over a temporary dirt road built by Vail Resortsand its effect on wetlands, BNet, September 27, 1999.
  68. ^ Resentencing date set for Jeff Luers, Freedom4um, 29 December 2007.
  69. ^ The eco-terrorist anthrax connection, ESR, October 21, 2001.
  70. ^ ELF Archives, Original ELF.
  71. ^ Operation Backfire Press Conference, FBI, January 20, 2006.
  72. ^ Extremist Environmentalists Indicted���
  73. ^ "Prison sentences symbolize decline of radical environmentalist movement". International Herald Tribune. http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2007/07/23/america/NA-FEA-GEN-US-Radical-Environmentalists.php. Retrieved 2008-04-27.  
  74. ^ http://www.foxnews.com/video2/video08.html?maven_referralObject=3208649&maven_referralPlaylistId=&sRevUrl=http://www.foxnews.com/us/
  75. ^ Archives, Food Safety, June 13, 2001.
  76. ^ Toni Bartone. Total Liberation in Erie, Thomas Merton Center.
  77. ^ "The man, the activist", first published in Arkangel.
  78. ^ a b Best, Steven and Best & Nocella. Igniting a Revolution: Voices in Defense of the Earth, Lantern Books, 2006, p. 57.
  79. ^ No Compromise in Defence of Mother Earth", Earth First!.
  80. ^ Bite Back Archive, See ELF.
  81. ^ Bite Back Archives, See 2002/2003 for ALF/ELF.
  82. ^ English introduces bill condemning eco-terrorism, The Herald, April 2, 2003.
  83. ^ ALF/ELF Burn Down Mink Farm, Bite Back, December 2, 2002.
  84. ^ Best, Steven and Best & Nocella. Igniting a Revolution: Voices in Defense of the Earth, Lantern Books, 2006, p. 414.
  85. ^ David Rovics, Lyrics, AOL.
  86. ^ a b Stop Eco-Violence, Stop Eco-Violence, February 12, 2002.
  87. ^ Paul Watson: Assault on the foundations of freedom, New Zealand Herald, February 27, 2006.
  88. ^ a b FBI, ATF address domestic terrorism, CNN, May 19, 2005.
  89. ^ Irreplaceable books ruined in arson blaze at UW, Museum Security, May 30, 2001.
  90. ^ 100 People Who Are Screwing Up America? And Why?, Philosphistry, August 8, 2005.

External links


The Earth Liberation Front (ELF), also known as "Elves" or "The Elves",[1] is the collective name for autonomous individuals or covert cells who, according to the ELF Press Office, use "economic sabotage and guerrilla warfare to stop the exploitation and destruction of the environment".

The ELF was founded in Brighton in the United Kingdom in 1992[2] and spread to the rest of Europe by 1994. It is now an international movement with attacks reported in 17 countries[3][4][5] and is widely regarded as the Animal Liberation Front's younger sister, because of the relationship and cooperation between the two movements.[6] Using the same leaderless resistance model, as well as similar guidelines to the ALF,[2] sympathizers say that it is an eco-defense group dedicated to taking the profit motive out of environmental destruction by causing economic damage to businesses through the use of direct action.[7]

The ELF was classified as the top "domestic terror" threat in the United States by the Federal Bureau of Investigation in March 2001,[8][9] and are categorised as "eco-terrorists".[10] The ELF's guidelines require that individuals or groups acting on its behalf "take all necessary precautions against harming any animal — human and nonhuman."[11] On the lack of deaths from ELF attacks, the FBI's deputy assistant director for counterterrorism has said, "I think we're lucky. Once you set one of these fires they can go way out of control."[12] The name came to public prominence when they were featured on the television show 60 Minutes in 2005.[13]

Contents

Structure and aims

co-edited Igniting a Revolution: Voices in Defense of Earth (2006), which includes essays by convicted environmental terrorists Jeff Luers, Noel Molland and Craig Marshall. He is also a professor of philosophy at the University of Texas and co-founded the Animal Liberation Press Office in North America.]]
is a spokesman for the ELF and has been involved in ALF actions such as; the sinking of whaling ships, the release of animals from fur farms and several acts of arson. In 2006 he was charged as part of the FBI's "Operation Backfire", referred to by radical environmentalists as the "Green Scare" defendants.]]

ELF "monkeywrenching" is carried out against facilities and companies involved in logging, genetic engineering, GMO crops, deforestation, sport utility vehicle (SUV) sales, urban sprawl, rural cluster and developments with larger homes, energy production and distribution, and a wide variety of other activities, all charged by the ELF with exploiting the Earth, its environment and inhabitants.[14][15]

The Earth Liberation Front has no formal leadership, hierarchy, membership or official spokesperson and is entirely decentralized; instead consisting of individuals or cells who choose the term as a banner to use. Individuals are commonly known to work in affinity groups, known as cells, and are usually self-funded.[14][15]

Techniques involve destruction of property, by either using tools to disable or the use of arson to destroy, what activists believe is being used to injure animals, people or the environment. These actions are sometimes called ecotage and there are marked differences between their actions in the United States and the United Kingdom.

Jeff "Free" Luers, who served a ten year sentence for the firebombing of SUVs at a dealership, which was revised from twenty-two years and ten months,[16] describes why the ELF exists and why they have kept by the guidelines that were initially published for the movement:[17]

ELF's goal is to stop practices that are incredibly harmful to the environment and to help create environmental sustainability.

There is a reason that ELF and similar groups have come into existence. They have received the support of many mainstream people because of the effectiveness of their tactics.

More important, ELF has received so much support because in a world prone to violence, the ELF has stuck by its code: Never place life in danger of harm.

With many different reasons why ELF activists carry out economic sabotage, a communique to the press claiming the responsibility for an arson against urban sprawl in December 2000, described the reason a cell the took an action. As Elves usually do, they claimed that burning down the house was non-violent, because it was searched for any living creatures; an issue which is much debated within the environmental movement.[18]

There are over six billion people on this planet of which almost a third are either starving, or living in poverty. Building homes for the wealthy should not even be a priority.

Forests, farms and wetlands are being replaced with a sea of houses, green chemical lawns, blacktop, and roadkill. Farmland is being bought out by land developers because of their inability to compete with cheap corporate, genetically-engineered, pesticide saturated food. The time has come to decide what is more important: the planet and the health of its population or the profits of those who destroy it.

Any direct action to halt the destruction of the environment and adhering to the strict non-violent guidelines, can be considered an ELF action. Economic sabotage and property destruction are the primary focus of the published guidelines:[1][14][19]

  • To inflict maximum economic damage on those profiting from the destruction and exploitation of the environment (biophysical).
  • To reveal to, and to educate the public about the atrocities committed against the earth and all species that populate it.
  • To take all necessary precautions against harming any animal - human and non-human.

" is spray-painted on a multi-million dollar house to protest the development. New construction of large single-family residences is a frequent target of the ELF.]]

Some of the most common and notable attacks are against the development of multi-million dollar houses, a frequent target in the ELF campaign. In a communique to the ELF Press Officer in North America, that was later published in The Environmental Magazine, the group declared in 2001:[20]

Urban sprawl has undoubtedly served to alter nearly 90 percent of Long Island's habitats, either by physically removing them, paving them, or polluting them with toxic man-made materials, making them either undesirable or unsustainable for most species.

Press office

The North American Earth Liberation Front Press Office (NAELFPO or ELFPO) was relaunched in October 2008, receiving anonymous communiques from activists, for distributing to the press and public, to discuss the motives, ideologies and history behind such actions.[21]

Craig Rosebraugh served as an unofficial spokesperson for the ELF Press Office in North America from 1997 to early September 2001.[22] Doubts have been raised about whether Rosebraugh or other unofficial spokespeople actually have ties to the cells involved,[23] although the press office claim they do not know the identities of ELF members.[21]

Support networks

Prisoner support networks support ELF prisoners, such as Spirit of Freedom (ELPSN), an English website listing all earth liberation prisoners, as well as a variety of other prisoners of conscience. There are also ELF support networks in Belgium, Italy, North America, and Poland, which collectively coordinate the support of prisoners, as well as websites for specific prisoners, such as for; Rod Coronado, Jeff "Free" Luers, Daniel McGowan, Briana Waters and Tre Arrow.[24] The networks distribute literature written by those in prison, to their supporters and other support groups, and sometimes raise funds for those who require financial aid in their cases.[25]

Philosophy

Earth liberationists, are a diverse group of individuals with a variety of different ideologies and theories. These include; animal liberationists, anti-capitalists, green anarchists, deep ecologists, eco-feminists, and anti-globalisationists.[26]

Elves argue that illegal direct action is required in order to aid the earth liberation movement, also referred to as eco-resistance movement, and a part of the radical environmental movement. The ELF claim that it would be similar to how the ALF has projected forward the animal liberation movement. There was also the intention that in the same way animal liberationists "help out" with legal campaigns, earth liberationists would aid above-ground environmental organisations, notably Earth First!, by acts of ecotage.[27]

Origin

United Kingdom

a Monkey wrench and stone hammer.]]

The Earth Liberation Front was founded in 1992 in Brighton, England by members of the Earth First! (EF!) environmental movement at the first ever national meeting. At the time, EF! had become very popular, so people's concerns were based on maintaining this popularity and by doing so not associating with overt law breaking. There was no universal agreement over this, but it was accepted amongst the movement that British EF! would instead continue to advocate and focus on civil disobedience and mass demonstrations.[2] If people wanted to participate in acts of ecotage, the new name "Earth Liberation Front" would be used, with its name and guidelines derived from the Animal Liberation Front (ALF), another movement that uses direct action to liberate animals or sabotage companies using them. It was understood that the simplicity of the guidelines was a crucial factor in order to engage as many people as possible to the new cause, with the intention that the ELF would quickly become as popular as the ALF.[28]

Earth Night

The very first ELF action is unknown, or undocumented, but one of the first and most notable actions was on April Fool's Earth Night 1992, a night organised by activists to carry out ecotage and also one of the first of them. The Elves, as they were also known, targeted Fisons, a peat company accused of destroying the peat bogs causing £50,000-70,000 worth of damage. Pumps, trucks and other machinery belonging to the company were destroyed after legal campaigners, Friends of the Earth, spent two years advocating a boycott of the company. Green Anarchist magazine publicised the communique with the demands from the ELF:[29]

All our peat bogs must be preserved in their entirety, for the sake of the plants, the animals and our national heritage. Cynically donating small amounts will do no good. The water table will drop, and the bogs will dry out and die, unless it is preserved fully. Fisons must leave all of it alone - now!

EF! Journal

In the September–October 1993 issue of the Earth First! Journal, an anonymous article announced the creation of the ELF in England. It said the ELF is a movement of independently operating eco-saboteurs that split from the British EF! movement, which has focused directly on public direct actions. The author noted that, unlike the ALF which seeks publicity: "ELF cells, for security reasons, work without informing the press and do not claim responsibility for actions."

Development of the ELF abroad

Europe

The ELF quickly spread across to Europe by 1994, with actions first occurring in Holland, Germany, Russia, Scandinavia, New Zealand, Italy, Ireland, Poland, Spain, France and Finland, and the name starting to be used across the globe.[3][5] The Earth Liberation Front is widely regarded as the Animal Liberation Front's younger sister, because of the relationship and cooperation between the two movements.[6] It is believed that cells rapidly established themselves in new countries because of the global outreach of Earth First! and the connection between the two groups.[30] British Elves were also making contact with like-minded activists, informing them about the ELF and its tactics, with missionaries targeting specifically France, Spain, Germany and Holland.

Within two years, McDonalds had been vandalised in Germany and Poland, Amsterdam Airport Schiphol and been sabotaged with cars trashed and hunting towers were destroyed in Holland and Germany, presumably inspired by similar actions against hunting by the ALF.[31]

North America

Further information: North American Earth Liberation Front Press Office

Canadian ELA

The first time it was known that an earth liberation action had happened in North America, was in 1995, in Canada, by a group calling itself the Earth Liberation Army (ELA).[32] They were considered by the European Elves at the time to be "transatlantic cousins". On 19 June 1995, the ELA burned down a wildlife museum and damaged a hunting lodge in British Columbia.[33]

United States

On Columbus Day 1996, activists spraypainted "504 years of genocide" and "ELF" on the walls of a public relations office, as well as a McDonalds restaurant in Oregon, the actions were the very first by the ELF in the United States. The same restaurant then had its locks glued and spraypainted again, but this time in support of the British McLibel Two, two activists who had distributed anti-McDonalds leaflets. The next day, it was reported that another two McDonalds restaurants, again in Oregon, had their locks glued by ELF activists.[33][34] The only other reported action of the year was on Christmas Day, when a fur farm was raided in Michigan and 150 mink released into the wild by the Great Lakes ELF.[35]

Mexico

In late November 2008, a group calling itself eco-anarquista por el ataque directo (Eco-anarchist cell for direct attack) claimed responsibility for a number of recent actions, including: half a dozen Molotov cocktails thrown at tren férreo (metro rail) in Mexico City, Incendiary sabotage against Telmex, a Molotov cocktail thrown at a Banamex ATM. These attacks were claimed to have taken place “as a form of 'protest' against the construction of a new rail line (line 12), in Mexico City (D.F.) and Mexico State; already because of its construction many trees were cut down, entire families evicted and land expropriated with large hectares of green areas subsequently deforested.”[36]

Soon after this initial group of actions, the Frente de Liberación de la Tierra (Earth Liberation Front) claimed responsibility for a number of actions including the sabotage of a construction machine on December 30 2008,[37] arson at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM)[38] and the March 22nd, 2009 arson of construction equipment in Guadalajara, Jalisco.[39]

Notable attacks: 1998-2009

1998/1999

The ELF gained national attention for a series of actions which earned them the label of eco-terrorists,[10] and one of the top domestic terror threats in the United States.[8] This came after the burning of a ski resort in Vail, Colorado, on October 19, costing $12 million.[40] In a communique to the press, the ELF said:[41]

Vail, Inc. is already the largest ski operation in North America and now wants to expand even further. The 12 miles (19 km) of roads and 885 acres (3.58 km2) of clearcuts will ruin the last, best lynx habitat in the state. Putting profits ahead of Colorado's wildlife will not be tolerated.

Actions also included sabotaging power lines, the burning of an SUV dealership and the burning down of a logging headquarters causing $1 million in damages. The Elves wrote to the local paper "Let this be a lesson to all greedy multinational corporations who don't respect their ecosystems,"[40] with most actions taking place in Oregon. The defendants in the case were later charged in the FBI's "Operation Backfire", which included 17 acts of property destruction.[42]

The ELF then set fire to the Michigan State University on New Years Eve, using a gasoline bomb to cause $1.1 million in damages, because of their GMO-engineering. The next day, commercial logging equipment was set on fire, with "ELF" and "Go Log in Hell" spraypainted on a truck. In March 2008, four activists were charged for both the arsons.[43]

2000

On November 27, in Colorado, the ELF burned the Legend Ridge mansion and sent a message to the Boulder Weekly saying "Viva la revolution!" Damages were estimated at $2.5 million.[44]

2001

In March, a total of thirty SUVs were torched, belonging to Joe Romania's dealership, in Oregon, with damages estimated at $1 million. The action was claimed in support of Jeff "Free" Luers, who targeted the very same dealership and was in court for the charges at the time.[45] He was then sentenced to twenty-two years in jail, later revised to ten.

On May 21, a fire destroyed laboratories, offices and archives at the Center for Urban Horticulture, University of Washington, causing a total of $7 million in damages.[46] The arson destroyed 20 years of research and plant and book collections. The ELF claimed responsibility based upon the incorrect belief that the University was involved in genetic engineering of poplar trees.[47] No genetic engineering was being conducted. In the wake of the attack, an FBI spokeswoman in Portland, Oregon said "I don't think there's any doubt the ELF is upping the ante".[48]

On November 21, ELF member Ian Wallace planted incendiary devices outside of two buildings on the campus of Michigan Technological University in Houghton, Michigan during the early morning hours. The devices failed, and on March 21, 2009, Wallace was sentenced to three years in prison for the incident by Judge Robert Holmes Bell,[49] who said Wallace "didn't intend to hurt anybody, (but) this is a serious offense."[50] Said Wallace after his conviction, "I have been consumed by shame for what I have done," Wallace said. "My greatest blessing is that no one got hurt." [51]

2003

On August 1, a 206-unit condominium in San Diego was destroyed, with a banner left at the scene saying "If you build it, we will burn it", signed "The E.L.F.s are mad".[52] The damages totaled $50 million[53] after flames reached an estimated 200 feet (61 m) in the air, as over a hundred fire fighters attempted to put out the fire. The destruction was the movements most financially damaging action against a target, with a local preservation group calling the action pointless, noting that "You can go and burn something down, but it's just going to get built again."[52] Exactly three weeks later, 125 SUVs and hummers were torched, costing a total of $3.5 million, with "I love pollution" spray-painted at the scene,[54] and a month later homes being built in San Diego were targeted again, this time costing an estimated $450,000 in damages.[55]

2006

The FBI's most recent report stated that there had been over 1,200 "criminal incidents",[30] within January 2006. A nearly completed 9,600-square-foot (890 m2) house, worth $3 million, was burnt to the ground in Washington. The Herald Net reported that a bedsheet was draped across the front gate, with a threatening message spray-painted on it.[56]

, Mexico. In one of many recent anonymous communiques, the ELF reported to Bite Back; "Maybe we have not collapsed the system of domination with these actions, but it begins with actions like these."[4][57][58][59]]]

2008

One of the latest ELF arsons was reported on the morning of March 3, when explosive devices set fire to four multi-million dollar homes from the 2007 Seattle Street of Dreams in Echo Lake, Washington, costing $7 million in damage.[60] Authorities described the act as "domestic terrorism" after finding "ELF" spray-painted in red letters, mocking claims that the homes were environmentally friendly: "Built Green? Nope black! McMansions in RCDs r not green. ELF."[61] A criminology professor replied saying: "The real unfortunate thing is many citizens will empathize with ELF because their goal is the environment."[62]

2009

On March 23 the ELF claim the burning of an excavator in Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico. In one of many recent anonymous communiques, the ELF reported to Bite Back; "Maybe we have not collapsed the system of domination with these actions, but it begins with actions like these."[63]

On September 4 ELF claimed responsibility for using a stolen excavator to overturn two AM radio towers belonging to station KRKO near Seattle, Washington; they claimed that radio waves are dangerous.[64]

A Texas man was arrested after construction workers found a disabled construction vehicle grafiteed with the words "ANOTHER TRACTOR DECOMMISSIONED BY THE E.L.F." [65]

Other movements

ELA and Environmental Rangers

Further reading: Earth Liberation Army (ELA)

The first major report of a name other than ELF being used to claim ecotage was in October 1998, when the Earth Liberation Army (ELA) claimed to be responsible for causing $12 million in damages to Vail Ski Resort by setting fire to several buildings and four chairlifts.[66]

Two years later, in Oregon, three SUVs were completely destroyed by placing jugs of gasoline under the vehicles, with the ELA calling for others to "[c]ontinue the fight to remove the profit motive from the killing of the environment (biophysical)." Jeff Luers was later convicted of arson, as part of the Operation Backfire case, along with other ALF and ELF defendants.[67] There have also been other groups that have caused similar damage as the ELF, with in 2001 reports that "eco-terrorist" attacks, known as "ecotage" had increased. These included the ELF, the ELA, and another name being used the "Environmental Rangers" who use similar tactics.[68] Activists have also used the names "The Moles", "The Grey Wolves", "Westcountry Wildlife Cell", "Eco-Animal Defense Unit" and "Radical Brigades for Ecological Defence", as well as others.[15]

Environmental Life Force

The Environmental Life Force, was the first radical group to use explosive and incendiary devices to promote pro-environment causes, also known as the Original ELF. It was founded by John Hanna, who was the only member of the group to be arrested and convicted for the use of explosives on federal property.[10] Although it was an eco-guerilla entity with similar philosophies to the current ELF (Earth Liberation Front), which formed fifteen years later, there was no formal link between the two groups, and founders of the Earth Liberation Front may not have even been aware of the existence of the Environmental Life Force.[10] Despite this, it has acknowledged in written communications that Dave Foreman, who founded Earth First! three years after the original ELF, was in communication with Hanna in the mid 1980s, before the Earth Liberation Front was founded, which was after Foreman cut ties with the Earth First! movement.[69]

Police response, and convictions

First ELF arrest

Further information: Earth Liberation Prisoners Support Network

In 1994, Dutch authorities and police made claims that British ELF activists were travelling abroad to cause sabotage, which were disputed by the organization, with later that year the first ELP activist being caught and later charged. Known as Paul S., he was arrested and accused of carrying out an 18-month campaign of vandalism in Holland against road construction sites. The Dutch government attempted to declare him insane, because of his inability to provide a political reason for his actions, other than his care for the environment. This was unsuccessful and the prisoner was sentenced to three years for damaging property.[3]

British police raids

Due to the increased popularity of the environmental movement, as well as the animal liberation movement and estimates that five ALF actions occurred per day, police carried out a series of raids against animal rights and environmental activists. In total, there were 55 homes raided against suspected ALF and ELF activists, including an individual in Italy. The police had not managed to charge anyone with any illegal activities, until on January 16, 1996, when six men were charged for a five year ALF/ELF campaign. They were sentenced a year later each to three years for conspiracy to incite direct action in the name of animal and earth liberation.[3]

Operation Backfire

was charged for two counts of arson and conspiracy in the FBI's "Operation Backfire". He pleaded guilty to avoid a life sentence, without testifying against his co-defendants, some of whom had done so against him.]]

The term Green Scare, alluding to the Red Scares, periods of fear over communist infiltration of U.S. society, is a term popularized by environmental activists to refer to legal action by the U.S. government against the radical environmentalist movement.

It is first known to have appeared in 2002 in the wake of the February 12 congressional hearings titled "The Threat of Eco-Terrorism" which discussed groups including the Earth Liberation Front (ELF) and the Animal Liberation Front (ALF).[9] In late 2005 and early 2006, as part of Operation Backfire, US grand juries indicted a total of 18 activists on a range of charges related to "violent acts in the name of animal rights and environmental causes".[70] According to the FBI, many of these acts were carried out on behalf of the ELF[40] and was considered as one of the largest arrests of environmental activists in American history.[71]

The operation resulted in the arrest of Chelsea Dawn Gerlach, William C. Rodgers, and Daniel McGowan.[72]

In 2008, the FBI increased the reward for handing over four suspects to $50,000. The four, two Americans and two Canadians, are believed to have fled the U.S. through Mexico and are possibly hiding in Syria, Russia, China or India. The announcement of an increased manhunt came on the tenth anniversary of the bombing in Vail.[73]

Cooperation with the ALF

Philosophy

Further information: Earth liberation, Animal liberation, Ecocentrism, Biocentrism and Deep ecology
The name "Animal & Earth Liberation Front" or "Earth & Animal Liberation Front" (ALF and ELF, respectively) is commonly used when undertaking an animal liberation action, that is inclusively an environmental issue. Or alternatively an ELF action that includes in some way liberating or rescuing animals; for example actions to protect the forests.[2][6] Both names are also used by radical activists when engaging in direct action to liberate animals and defend the earth by using property destruction. This is done within the guidelines of the Animal/Earth Liberation Front; to claim the action by both groups.[35][74]
  • Radical environmentalists consider the ELF to be the environmental wing of the Animal Liberation Front, effectively acting as the Eco-ALF.[27] Evidence of this include names used such as the "Westcountry Wildlife Cell" and then later "ALF: Eco-Animal Defense Unit".[35]
  • The ELF is also considered to be the ALF's younger sister,[6] forming 16 years later and due to the fact that the guidelines, as well as the name itself, were derived from the movement.[2]
  • Despite the movements only forming alliances in 1996/1997, activists such as Rod Coronado were known to be active in both the ALF and ELF dating back before the names were officially used together.[75]

Noel Molland, a former ELF activist, writes in Steven Best's Igniting a Revolution that:[2]

The founders of the ELF wanted radical environmentalists to work on the same basis and have a similar name, hoping that people would instantly understand how the ELF operated and what its goals were.

History

in Rome, Italy]]

During the mid 1990s, the Western Wildlife Unit, an ELF branch in Britain, were responsible for various acts of animal rights themed direct action. The ecotages included spiking trees as well as targeting anglers, all in the name of wooldand animals. However, it wasn't until sometime later, in the United States, that a joint claim of responsibility was made.

Molland also writes that the first established ALF and ELF action was established on March 14, 1997, when the "Animal Liberation Front - Eco-Animal Defense Unit" claimed the spiking of 47 trees in a clearcut area, Oregon. This was only a few months after the fur farm had been raided by the Great Lakes ELF, which also highlighted the overlap in direct action for animal rights and environmentalism.[35] The groups intention was to state that the farm they had raided was a joint effort between members of the Animal and Earth Liberation Front.

raid removing 82 beagles and 26 rabbits from Interfauna in Cambridge on St Patrick's Night 1990 by Keith Mann and Barry Horne.[76]]]

Five days later, the "Bay Area Cell of the Earth and Animal Liberation Front" claimed the fire bombing of the University of California, an animal research laboratory that was still under construction at the time.[45] Also later that year, on November 29, there was another joint ALF & ELF claim, this time releasing 500 wild horses and torching the Bureau of Land Management in Burns, in protest of BLM's intention to round up the wild horses and process them for the sale of horsemeat.[35][77]

However, this claim contradicts the Southern Poverty Law Center, which states that the first incident of cooperation between the two movements was 6 months prior to these events on October 27, 1996, when the ALF & ELF were both responsible for firebombing a Forest Service truck in Detroit, Oregon. Then three days later both groups claimed the arson at the U.S. Forest Service Oakridge Ranger Station, at the cost of $5.3 million.

It was then reported that a week before the Bay Area cells fur farm raid, on March 11, 1997, four trucks were torched, at the Agricultural Fur Breeders Co-Op. The damage totaled $1 million and the action was again claimed by the ALF & ELF.[45]

As the ELF was becoming well established through its own actions, on 21 June 1998, the United States Forest Service wildlife research centre near Olympia, Washington was set on fire with "Eco-Defense" and "Earth Liberation" spray painted on construction machinery, which had received extensive damage in New Jersey on the 2nd Feb. Both the actions were claimed jointly by the ALF & ELF, and were estimated to have caused one of the worst damages yet, estimated at $1.9 million. The same claim was made when 310 animals were taken from a fur farm involved in experimental research based in Madison, Wisconsin, which were stolen on the 3rd of July.[77][78]

Actions

Timeline of Animal Liberation Front actions: 2000-2004 and 2005-Present

, causing £500,000 in damages to Londbridges boathouse, Oxfordshire on 4 July 2005.]] Actions claimed by both the ALF and ELF jointly has appeared across the globe, nearly as much as the ELF has, causing more activists from the ALF and other movements to become involved; believing in "No Compromise in Defence of Mother Earth",[78] a popular Earth First! slogan used and populated in the 1980s.[79]

Despite this, in comparison to the ALF, there have been few communiques in recent years that have been released to the media or ELF Press Offices. This is largely due to the style of the ELF, whom are much less likely to report their actions, or even leave a message to notify their targets regarding why they have been attacked.[31]

Although ALF and ELF combined actions have continued,[80] one of the latest string of jointly claimed arsons[81] was publicised was in November 2002, when activists sent a communique to Bite Back and also the ELF Press Office, claiming responsibility for the arson at Mindek Brothers Fur Farm.[82] In a press release, the groups stated the reason for their action:[83][84]

Working together, cells from A.L.F. & E.L.F. demolished this feed facility due to its role in the systematic torture and killing of thousands of innocent creatures yearly - animals which possess the same complex emotional/physiological traits as loved household pets, yet are denied all reasonable consideration and confined to a miserable "existence" in tiny wire cages hardly large enough to turn around in.

In popular culture

  • Folk musician David Rovics performs a song dedicated to the ELF called "Song for the Earth Liberation Front"[85]
  • In the 2004 novel by Michael Crichton, State of Fear, a fictional group based on the Earth Liberation Front, but called the Environmental Liberation Front instead, is the main villain.
  • In the novel by Nicholas Evans, The Divide, a main character is involved in ELF activities.
  • In 2010 a documentary on the ELF will be released, entitled, If a Tree Falls.[86]
  • In 2005 the ELF were the subject of a CBS 60 Minutes report called Burning Rage in which Ed Bradley Reports On Extremists Now Deemed Biggest Domestic Terror Threat [87] and another from CNN[88]
  • In 2009 the ELF were the subject of a documentary called Green With A Vengeance[89]
  • In 2005 the ELF were the subject of the documentary 'Testify! - Eco-Defense and the Politics of Violence'
  • Featued in the episode 'Scorched (Numb3rs)' from Season 2 of Numb3rs.

Criticism

Further information: Eco-terrorism

The FBI designated the ELF as "eco-terrorists."[10] Representative Scott McInnis, then chairman of the US House Subcommittee on Forests and Forest Health, subpoenaed Craig Rosebraugh in an effort to investigate the ELF's activities. On hearing Rosebraugh's testimony, McInnis suggested it was "luck" no one has been killed by an ELF (or ALF) attack.[90]

Despite the leaderless nature of the movement, the FBI says that activist Rod Coronado is "a national leader" of the ELF in the USA, while Coronado describes himself as an "unofficial ELF spokesman".[91]

Referring to the Earth Liberation Front and the Animal Liberation Front, ATF Deputy Assistant Director Carson Carrol has said, "The most worrisome trend to law enforcement and private industry alike has been the increase in willingness by these movements to resort to the use of incendiary and explosive devices."[12] In 2005, the FBI announced that the ELF is America's greatest domestic terrorist threat, responsible for over 1,200 "criminal incidents" amounting to tens of millions of dollars in damage to property.[30] The United States Department of Homeland Security confirmed that the Animal Liberation Front and Earth Liberation Front are the most serious threats to the nation.[12]

It has also been claimed the ELF's actions harm the environment, a spokesman for the Vail Ski Resort, which the ELF fire bombed in 1998 in protest of a planned extension, explained, "more logs were used to rebuild the resort than were cut for the [original] expansion".[90] In 2001 the ELF targeted the University of Washington's Center for Urban Horticulture with the aim of disrupting research into genetic engineering. However, the targeted researcher was investigating hybridization in poplar trees, and the resulting fire killed a significant number of endangered plants.[92]

ELF was also featured in commentator Bernard Goldberg's book 100 People Who Are Screwing Up America as #23, "The Unknown American Terrorist". They were listed and criticised for damaging property and acting like a terrorist group in the name of saving the environment.[93]

Further reading

See also

References

  1. ^ a b Best, Steven and Best & Nocella. Igniting a Revolution: Voices in Defense of the Earth, Lantern Books, 2006, p.50.
  2. ^ a b c d e f Best, Steven and Best & Nocella. Igniting a Revolution: Voices in Defense of the Earth, Lantern Books, 2006, p. 49.
  3. ^ a b c d Best, Steven and Best & Nocella. Igniting a Revolution: Voices in Defense of the Earth, Lantern Books, 2006, p. 19, 52 & 53.
  4. ^ a b Diary of Earth Liberation Actions 2006-2008, Earth Liberation Front Press Office, 2006-2008.
  5. ^ a b ELF actions have been reported in; Australia, Canada, Colombia, Finland, France, Germany, Holland, Ireland, Italy, New Zealand, Poland, Russia, Scandinavia, Spain, Sweden, United Kingdom and United States.
  6. ^ a b c d Updates from the Frontlines: ALF and ELF, San Diego Indymedia, January 10, 2003.
  7. ^ Article:405, Arkangel
  8. ^ a b Earth Liberation Front is now FBI's No. 1: Mainstream media finally pick up on the concern of ecoterrorism, Property Rights Foundation of America, Inc, March 2001.
  9. ^ a b Congressional Testimony: "The Threat of Eco-Terrorism", FBI, February 12, 2002.
  10. ^ a b c d e Original ELF
  11. ^ What is the Earth Liberation Front?, Satya, March 2004.
  12. ^ a b c FBI, ATF address domestic terrorism, CNN, May 19, 2005.
  13. ^ Burning Rage: Reports On Extremists Now Deemed Biggest Domestic Terror Threat, CBS, November 10, 2005.
  14. ^ a b c Profile: Earth Liberation Front, MIPT Terrorism Knowledge Base.
  15. ^ a b c Best, Steven and Best & Nocella. Igniting a Revolution: Vioices in Defense of the Earth, Lantern Books, 2006, p. 54.
  16. ^ The Battle of Bear Creek: New Threat in Americas Backyard, The Independent, March 5, 2008.
  17. ^ Luers, Jeff. Extreme Actions, Free Free Now, March 27, 2002.
  18. ^ Best, Steven and Best & Nocella. Igniting a Revolution: Voices in Defense of the Earth, Lantern Books, 2006, p. 410.
  19. ^ Collectively written. Earth First! National Meeting, Brighton, 1992.
  20. ^ Burning Down The Houses, The Environmental Magazine, May 2001.
  21. ^ a b "North American Earth Liberation Front Press Office" (Shockwave Flash). http://www.elfpressoffice.org/main.html. Retrieved November 11, 2008. 
  22. ^ Craig Subpoenaed to Federal Grand Jury in Eugene; ELF Investigation Continues, Portland Indymedia, February 15, 2006.
  23. ^ Earth to ELF: Come In, Please, LA Weekly, December 22, 2005.
  24. ^ Prisoner support websites include:
  25. ^ About: Spirit of Freedom, Earth Liberation Prisoners Support Network.
  26. ^ Manes, Christopher, 1990. Green Rage: Radical Environmentalism and the Unmaking of Civilization, Boston: Little, Brown and Co.
  27. ^ a b Best, Steven and Best & Nocella. Igniting a Revolution: Voices in Defense of the Earth, Lantern Books, 2006, p. 50 & 51.
  28. ^ FIRE, Greenfield.
  29. ^ Best, Steven and Best & Nocella. Igniting a Revolution: Voices in Defense of the Earth, Lantern Books, 2006, p. 51 & 52.
  30. ^ a b c Best, Steven and Best & Nocella. Igniting a Revolution: Voices in Defense of the Earth, Lantern Books, 2006, p. 47.
  31. ^ a b Best, Steven and Best & Nocella. Igniting a Revolution: Voices in Defense of the Earth, Lantern Books, 2006, p. 52.
  32. ^ Globe and Mail, Toronto, 12 July 1995.
  33. ^ a b Best, Steven and Best & Nocella. Igniting a Revolution: Voices in Defense of the Earth, Lantern Books, 2006, p. 55.
  34. ^ Diary of Actions of the Earth Liberation Front 1996-2001, reposted by Portland Indymedia.
  35. ^ a b c d e Best, Steven and Best & Nocella. Igniting a Revolution: Voices in Defense of the Earth, Lantern Books, 2006, p. 56.
  36. ^ http://www.directaction.info/news_nov29_08.htm
  37. ^ http://www.directaction.info/news_dec30_08.htm
  38. ^ http://www.anarchistnews.org/?q=node/6383
  39. ^ http://news.infoshop.org/article.php?story=20090326173613991
  40. ^ a b c Eco-Terror Incictments: 'Operation Backfire' Nets 11, FBI, 20 January 2006.
  41. ^ The reactionary implications of "eco-terrorism", World Socialist Web Site, October 30, 1998.
  42. ^ Defendents plead guilty in Operation Backfire case, FBI, November 9, 2006.
  43. ^ 4 linked to radical group indicted in MSU arson, Detroit Free Press, March 11, 2008.
  44. ^ ELF, Center for the Defense of Free Enterprise.
  45. ^ a b c Eco-Violence: The Record, Southern Poverty Law Center.
  46. ^ [1], Seattle Times, May 21, 2001.
  47. ^ ELF members gained nothing by the UW arson, and so much was lost, Crosscut.com, May 30, 2008
  48. ^ Earth Liberation Front, stepping up arson campaign, Associated Press, June 2, 2001.
  49. ^ http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5iytjBWLjA8GW5b802hk1LB8DEANwD972AMB01
  50. ^ http://www.mininggazette.com/page/content.detail/id/504429.html?nav=5006
  51. ^ http://www.leadertelegram.com/story-news.asp?id=BLBBRTDK031
  52. ^ a b Militant group suspected of torching condo project, Sign On San Diego, August 2, 2003.
  53. ^ EcoTerrorism, Freedom's Zone, January 10, 2008.
  54. ^ Eco protesters and US anti-terror law, The Guardian, March 2, 2005.
  55. ^ Unfinished homes destroyed; banners point to militant environmental group ELF, Sign on San Diego, September 20, 2003.
  56. ^ ELF arson in Washington, Bombs and Shields, January 19, 2006.
  57. ^ Earth-destroying machine burned, Bite Back, March 23 2009.
  58. ^ Earth Liberation Front Communique: 03.22.09, Earth Liberation Front Press Office, March 2009.
  59. ^ Diary of Earth Liberation Actions 2009, Earth Liberation Front Press Office, 2009.
  60. ^ Luxury Homes Burn in Apparent Eco-Attack, Associated Press, March 3, 2008.
  61. ^ 'Street of Dreams' homes torched; eco-terrorists suspected, Seattle pi, March 3, 2008.
  62. ^ Arson a hallmark of the Earth Liberation Front, Herald Net, March 4, 2008.
  63. ^ Bite Back, March 23, 2009
  64. ^ "Activists topple towers, claim dangers of AM radio waves". CNN. 2009-09-04. http://www.cnn.com/2009/CRIME/09/04/washington.towers.terrorism/index.html. 
  65. ^ "Texas Man in Custody on Federal Arson Charges With Possible Eco-Terrorism Link". Fox News. October 2, 2009. http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,559201,00.html. 
  66. ^ waste & abuse - controversy over a temporary dirt road built by Vail Resortsand its effect on wetlands, BNet, September 27, 1999.
  67. ^ Resentencing date set for Jeff Luers, Freedom4um, 29 December 2007.
  68. ^ The eco-terrorist anthrax connection, ESR, October 21, 2001.
  69. ^ ELF Archives, Original ELF.
  70. ^ Operation Backfire Press Conference, FBI, January 20, 2006.
  71. ^ Extremist Environmentalists Indicted���
  72. ^ "Prison sentences symbolize decline of radical environmentalist movement". International Herald Tribune. http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2007/07/23/america/NA-FEA-GEN-US-Radical-Environmentalists.php. Retrieved 2008-04-27. 
  73. ^ http://www.foxnews.com/video2/video08.html?maven_referralObject=3208649&maven_referralPlaylistId=&sRevUrl=http://www.foxnews.com/us/
  74. ^ Archives, Food Safety, June 13, 2001.
  75. ^ Toni Bartone. Total Liberation in Erie, Thomas Merton Center.
  76. ^ "The man, the activist", first published in Arkangel.
  77. ^ a b Earth Liberation Front Timeline (Where did the website go?, Portland Indymedia, 1992-2001.
  78. ^ a b Best, Steven and Best & Nocella. Igniting a Revolution: Voices in Defense of the Earth, Lantern Books, 2006, p. 57.
  79. ^ No Compromise in Defence of Mother Earth", Earth First!.
  80. ^ Bite Back Archive, See ELF.
  81. ^ Bite Back Archives, See 2002/2003 for ALF/ELF.
  82. ^ English introduces bill condemning eco-terrorism, The Herald, April 2, 2003.
  83. ^ ALF/ELF Burn Down Mink Farm, Bite Back, December 2, 2002.
  84. ^ Best, Steven and Best & Nocella. Igniting a Revolution: Voices in Defense of the Earth, Lantern Books, 2006, p. 414.
  85. ^ David Rovics, Lyrics, AOL.
  86. ^ http://blogs.orlandosentinel.com/entertainment_movies_blog/2010/05/earth-liberation-front-the-movie.html
  87. ^ "Burning Rage". CBS News. November 10, 2005. http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2005/11/10/60minutes/main1036067.shtml. 
  88. ^ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pFMnr0VRywA
  89. ^ http://www.tuppashare.com/journeyman/store?p=3523
  90. ^ a b Stop Eco-Violence, Stop Eco-Violence, February 12, 2002.
  91. ^ Paul Watson: Assault on the foundations of freedom, New Zealand Herald, February 27, 2006.
  92. ^ Irreplaceable books ruined in arson blaze at UW, Museum Security, May 30, 2001.
  93. ^ 100 People Who Are Screwing Up America? And Why?, Philosophistry, August 8, 2005.

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