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Encyclopedia > Earth Liberation Front

The Earth Liberation Front (ELF) is the collective name for anonymous and autonomous individuals or groups that, according to the now defunct Earth Liberation Front Press Office, use "economic sabotage and guerrilla warfare to stop the exploitation and destruction of the natural environment." [1] The organization has been active in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom where the movement was founded. ELF sympathizers say that it is an eco-defense group dedicated to taking the profit motive out of environmental destruction by targeting and causing economic damage to businesses through the use of direct action.[1] The North American Earth Liberation Front Press Office (NAELFPO or ELFPO) was a legal, above-ground news service dedicated to exposing the political and social motives behind the covert direct actions of the underground Earth Liberation Front (ELF). ... “Guerrilla” redirects here. ... According to their web site, EcoDefense provides ...DIRECT ACTION to environmental organizations, grass roots animal and human rights groups and activities, dedicated hardcore activism, alternative green politics, and other creative campaigns and strategies linking together around the globe to achieve like minded goals for preserving our environment for future generations... This article or section does not cite any references or sources. ...


The ELF was classified as the top domestic terror threat in the United States by the FBI in March 2001.[2][3] The ELF's guidelines require that individuals or groups acting on its behalf "take all necessary precautions against harming any animal — human and nonhuman."[2]. On the lack of deaths from ELF action, 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."[4] The group came to public prominence when they were featured on the television show 60 Minutes.[5] Terrorist redirects here. ... The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is a federal criminal investigative, intelligence agency, and the primary investigative arm of the United States Department of Justice (DOJ). ... This article is about the CBS news magazine. ...


Their techniques involve destruction of property that they believe is being used to injure animals, people or the environment. These activities are sometimes called ecotage and there are marked differences between their actions in the United States and in the United Kingdom. The Earth Liberation Front has no formal leadership, membership or official spokesperson; instead it consists of individuals or small groups who choose to use the term. 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".[6] Craig Rosebraugh served as an unofficial spokesperson for the ELF from 1997 to early September 2001.[7] However, doubts have been raised about whether Rosebraugh or other unofficial spokespeople for ELF actually have any ties to the group.[8] For other uses, see Sabotage (disambiguation). ... Ecotage is the commission of usually illegal acts of sabotage motivated by environmentalism, including the prevention of ecocide. ... The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is a federal criminal investigative, intelligence agency, and the primary investigative arm of the United States Department of Justice (DOJ). ... Rod Coronado Rodney Adam Coronado is an American eco-anarchist and animal rights activist who has been convicted of arson, conspiracy and other crimes in connection with his activism but now advocates non-violent action. ... Craig Rosebraugh is an environmental activist who has been associated with the Earth Liberation Front (ELF) and the Animal Liberation Front (ALF), and who has served as a spokesman for both groups press office. ...

Contents

History

The Earth Liberation Front was founded in 1992 in Brighton, England by members of the "Earth First!" environmental movement. The name was derived from the Animal Liberation Front (ALF), a group that uses similar tactics to liberate animals or sabotage companies using them.[9] 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... The surest way to be done for conspiracy or to attract surveillance or infiltrators is to seek attention." This article is about the English city; for other places called Brighton, see Brighton (disambiguation). ... The symbol of Earth First!: a Monkey wrench and stone hammer Earth First! is a radical environmentalist organization[1] that emerged in the USA, in the great southwestern desert during the spring of 1980. ... Beagles stolen by British ALF activists from a testing laboratory owned by the Boots Group. ...


ELF guidelines for action

The Earth Liberation Front has published guidelines for action. These guidelines say:


Any direct action to halt the destruction of the environment and adhering to the strict nonviolence guidelines, listed below, can be considered an ELF action. Economic sabotage and property destruction fall within the guidelines.[10]

  1. To inflict maximum economic damage on those profiting from the destruction and exploitation of the natural environment.
  2. To reveal to, and to educate the public about the atrocities committed against the earth and all species that populate it.
  3. To take all necessary precautions against harming life.

For other uses, see Species (disambiguation). ...

Actions, police response, and convictions

ELF "monkeywrenching" has been carried out against facilities and companies involved in logging, genetic engineering, home building, automobile sales, energy production and distribution, and a wide variety of other activities, all charged by ELF with exploiting the environment. Individuals work in autonomous affinity groups and are self-funded.[11] // 1996 October 14, 1996. ... Monkeywrenching is economic warfare by sabotage, often by illegal means, used to slow down or halt an undesired government-sanctioned activity. ... Logging is the process in which trees are cut down usually as part of a timber harvest which is good for the environment. ... Kenyans examining insect-resistant transgenic Bt corn. ... An affinity group is a small group of activists (usually from 5-20) who work together on direct action. ...


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".[12] According to the FBI, many of these acts were carried out on behalf of the ELF.[13] Although some of those arrested deny any affiliation with the ELF,[14] others, including Rod Coronado, have established ties to the group.[15] Operation Backfire is an ongoing multi-agency criminal investigation, led by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), into violent acts in the name of animal rights and environmental causes in the United States [1]. // Background In 2004 the FBI merged seven independent investigations from its Portland, Oregon field office and... In the American common law legal system, a grand jury is a type of jury which determines if there is enough evidence for a trial. ...


In late 2006 a number of self-described ELF members pled guilty to arson and other charges in U.S. federal courts.[3]


On November 11, 2006 Joyanna Zacher, Nathan Block, Daniel McGowan and Jonathan Paul pleaded guilty to several eco-sabotage related charges, as part of a global resolution agreement with prosecutors. Judge Ann Aiken presided over the hearings. The change of pleas from the four defendants resolves all current “Operation Backfire” cases in Oregon.[4] Daniel McGowan 2004 Daniel McGowan is a left-wing extremist that was arrested and charged in federal court on multiple counts of arson and conspiracy, relating to the arson of Superior Lumber company in Glendale, Oregon on January 2, 2001 and Jefferson Poplar Farms in Clatskanie, Oregon on May 21...


On December 15, 2006 Chelsea Dawn Gerlach and Stanilas Gregory Meyerhoff, pleaded guilty to $20 million worth of arsons committed between 1996 and 2001 by the Eugene-based cell of the ELF known as "The Family". Their fire-bombing of a Vail ski resort resulted in $12 million and the FBI characterized the ELF as the United States' "top domestic terrorism threat". Gerlach has previously pleaded guilty to 18 counts of arson, saying she was motivated by "a deep sense of despair and anger at the deteriorating state of the global environment," but adding that she has "since realized the firebombings did more harm than good." Meyerhoff has renounced ELF and pleaded guilty to 54 counts, but is still under indictment in Michigan, Arizona, Washington, Wyoming and California.[5] Chelsea Dawn Gerlach (born in 1977) is a radical environmentalist associated with the Earth Liberation Front and the Animal Liberation Front. ... The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is a federal criminal investigative, intelligence agency, and the primary investigative arm of the United States Department of Justice (DOJ). ...


The FBI alleged that the group was led by William C. Rodgers, who was arrested in December 2005 and committed suicide in jail just before he was to be transferred to Oregon. Two other ELF members indicted in the Vail arson, Josephine Sunshine Overaker and Rebecca J. Rubin, have not been apprehended. William Rodgers a. ...


Vail Resorts Inc. has since rebuilt the firebombed lodge.


Criticism of ELF

The FBI designated the ELF as "eco-terrorists."[16] 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.[17] Eco-terrorism is defined by the Federal Bureau of Investigations Domestic Terrorism Section as the use or threatened use of violence of a criminal nature against innocent victims or property by an environmentally-oriented, subnational group for environmental-political reasons, or aimed at an audience beyond the target, often... Scott Steve McInnis (born May 9, 1953), American politician, was a Republican member of the United States House of Representatives from 1993 to 2005, representing the 3rd District of Colorado. ...


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."[18] Beagles stolen by British ALF activists from a testing laboratory owned by the Boots Group. ...


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" [6] (pdf). In 2001 the ELF targeted the University of Washington's Center for Urban Horticulture in 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.[19] Vail Resorts, Inc. ... The University of Washington, founded in 1861, is a public research university in Seattle, Washington. ... Kenyans examining insect-resistant transgenic Bt corn. ... This article is about a biological term. ... This article is about woody plants of the genus Populus. ...


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.[20] Bernard Bernie Goldberg (born 1945) is an American writer, journalist, and political commentator. ... 100 People Who Are Screwing Up America (and Al Franken is #37) (ISBN 0-06-076128-8) is a book by Bernard Goldberg that was published in 2005. ...


In popular culture

  • Folk musician David Rovics performs a song dedicated to the ELF called "Song for the Earth Liberation Front"[21] as well as a song about accused ELF activist, Jeffrey Luers titled "Free", after Luers' nickname.[22]
  • Edward Abbey published The Monkey Wrench Gang in 1975. The book is thought to be the inspiration for the formation of Earth First!. In 1989 he published a sequel Hayduke Lives.[citation needed]
  • 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.

David Rovics sings at the A16 rally in Washington DC in early 2005. ... Jeff Luers in the winter of 2004 Jeff Free Luers is an anarchist and environmental activist from Eugene, Oregon currently serving a twenty-two year prison sentence for arson. ... Edward Paul Abbey (January 29, 1927 - March 14, 1989) was an American author and essayist noted for his advocacy of environmental issues and criticism of public land policies. ... The Monkey Wrench Gang is a novel written by American author Edward Abbey (1927-1989), published in 1975. ... Hayduke Lives is a sequal to Edward Abbeys extremely popular book The Monkey Wrench Gang. ... Michael Crichton, pronounced [1], (born October 23, 1942) is an American author, film producer, film director, and television producer. ... State of Fear is a 2004 novel by Michael Crichton published by HarperCollins on December 7, 2004. ... Nicholas Evans (born 1950 in Bromsgrove, Worcestershire, England) is a United Kingdom journalist, screenwriter TV/film producer and bestselling novelist. ...

See also

The Earth Liberation Prisoners Support Network is a network to provide information on people imprisoned for direct action relating to campaings on Environmental and other issues. ... Theory and practice Issues History Culture By region Lists Related Anarchism Portal Politics Portal ·        Green anarchism is a school of thought within anarchism which puts an emphasis on the environment. ... Theory Issues Culture By region Lists Anarchism Portal Politics Portal ·        Anarcho-primitivism is an anarchist critique of the origins and progress of civilization. ... Deep ecology is a recent branch of ecological philosophy (ecosophy) that considers humankind as an integral part of its environment. ... Green syndicalism has been used as a name for the philosophy of the green guild or sustainable trades movement. ... The term Green Scare, alluding to the Red Scare of the 1940s-50s, is a term popularized by environmental activists to refer to legal action by the U.S. government against the radical environmentalist movement. ... William Billy Jensen Cottrell (born 1980) is a former Ph. ... Darren Thurston Darren Thurston is a well-known Canadian activist with a long history of involvement in animal rights, social justice and environmental issues. ...

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

Image:Steven best. ...

External links

References

  1. ^ http://arkangelweb.org/modules.php?op=modload&name=News&file=article&sid=405
  2. ^ http://prfamerica.org/EarthLiberationFrontNo1onFBIList.html
  3. ^ http://www.fbi.gov/congress/congress02/jarboe021202.htm
  4. ^ http://www.cnn.com/2005/US/05/19/domestic.terrorism/index.html
  5. ^ http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2005/11/10/60minutes/main1036067.shtml
  6. ^ http://www.nzherald.co.nz/section/story.cfm?c_id=2&ObjectID=10370129
  7. ^ http://portland.indymedia.org/en/2006/02/334091.shtml
  8. ^ http://www.laweekly.com/news/news/earth-to-elf-come-in-please/20/
  9. ^ http://greenfield.fortunecity.com/tree/16/fire.html#
  10. ^ http://www.tkb.org/Group.jsp?groupID=41
  11. ^ http://www.tkb.org/Group.jsp?groupID=41
  12. ^ http://www.fbi.gov/pressrel/speeches/mueller012006.htm
  13. ^ http://www.fbi.gov/page2/jan06/elf012006.htm
  14. ^ http://www.indymedia.org/en/2006/01/831928.shtml
  15. ^ http://www.nzherald.co.nz/section/story.cfm?c_id=2&ObjectID=10370129
  16. ^ http://www.csmonitor.com/2006/0130/p20s01-sten.htm
  17. ^ http://www.stopecoviolence.com/pdfs/2_12_02.pdf
  18. ^ http://www.cnn.com/2005/US/05/19/domestic.terrorism/index.html
  19. ^ http://www.museum-security.org/01/116.html
  20. ^ http://www.philosophistry.com/specials/100-people.html
  21. ^ http://members.aol.com/drovics/elfl.htm
  22. ^ http://portland.indymedia.org/en/2004/12/306830.shtml

  Results from FactBites:
 
Earth Liberation Front Summary (1876 words)
Earth Liberation Front (ELF) is a grassroots environmental group that the Federal Bureau of Investigation labeled "a serious terrorism threat." Since 1996, ELF and the Animal Liberation Front (ALF) committed more than 600 acts of vandalism that resulted in more than $43 million in damage, an FBI terrorism expert reported to Congress in 2002.
ELF sympathizers say that it is an eco-defense group dedicated to taking the profit motive out of environmental destruction by targeting and causing economic damage to businesses through the use of direct action [2].
Earth Liberation Front in the UK In contrast to their US counterparts, the actions of the ELF in the United Kingdom have mainly focused around small, unreported, covert ecotage, and have fallen short of eco-terrorism or major arson.
Earth Liberation Front - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (968 words)
ELF sympathizers say that it is an eco-defense group dedicated to taking the profit motive out of environmental destruction by targeting and causing economic damage to businesses through the use of direct action [2].
Craig Rosebraugh served as an unofficial spokesperson for the ELF from 1997 to early September 2001 [7].
Earth Liberation Front in the UK In contrast to their US counterparts, the actions of the ELF in the United Kingdom have mainly focused around small, unreported, covert ecotage, and have fallen short of eco-terrorism or major arson.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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