Smart Man

I’ve just started reading Days of Rage by Brian Burroughs. It’s about the leftist violence that occurred in the US throughout the 1970s. I was a kid during that time and I have vague memories of its existence. Burroughs writes that he was interested in documenting the subject because it’s been all but forgotten. It also seems to me that to the extent that it has been remembered it’s been seriously whitewashed.

I haven’t gotten very far into the book yet, but there have already been dozens of eyebrow raising moments.

For those who are not from the US or are too you to know the names, Weatherman was a group formed by the leadership of Students for a Democratic Society, a socialist organization. Before running for the leadership positions of the organization, a small group wrote “the Weatherman Paper” which described the radical left student movement in the United States as part of, in Burroughs’ words, “a single titanic global struggle between oppressed minorities and the agencies of U.S. imperialism.” SDS was disbanded and they group formed collectives with the intent of starting an armed insurrection in the United States with the intention of violently overthrowing the government. When numbers insufficient to start a revolution show interest, they decided to form an underground guerrilla organization.

“… Jim Mellen, one of the Weatherman paper’s eleven signers, though the whole idea of guerrilla war was crazy. Mellen was watching the Super Bowl with JJ, Dohrn, and Ayers in Chicago when JJ remarked that anyone who quit now would have to be killed. For Mellen it was the final straw; he walked out of the house at halftime, never to return.”

I’ll probably have more commentary on this in the future.

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