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Spreading Nonviolence
K-Wustrow‘s Approach to Active Nonviolence and
Strengthening Social Movements
in Civil Peace Service Projects
Goals
 1. K. Wustrow origins & intentions
 2. No ultimate truths, fixed rules, or „easy
recipes“
 3. Presentation an invitation to an open
dialogue your different approaches,
contextual dynamics, practical questions
and dealing with dilemmas
 4. Opening discussion about possible MoU
Kurve Wustrow –
History and roots
• founded 1980 – activists
• promotion of nonviolent action in
context of armed conflict, ecological
destruction and social injustice
• roots in the nonviolent social movement
against atomic waste disposal
Kurve Wustrow – Overall
objectives
1. Promotion of nonviolent conflict
resolution in theory and practice
2. The promotion of cooperation of
persons, groups and institutions
committed to nonviolence
3. Public relations activities for the
dissemination of nonviolent ideas
relating to conflict transformation
Spreading Nonviolence –
What do we mean?
 K-Wustrow‘s Mission Statement:
„We want to contribute to enabling the
transformation of dismay [shock] about violent
conflict and war, ecological destruction and social
injustice into deliberate [purposeful] /
strategic nonviolent action“
=> Our Goal is social change towards positive
peace.
Why Nonviolence? based on Felix
Kolb
 Violence has no emancipatory effect
 Violence leads into an escalation spiral
 Human beings, at least subconsciously,
have a tendency to act in a well-meaning
and just way.
 Resonance: „the good in one is reflected
in the other“ (Gandhi)
Why Nonviolence?
 It is not assumed that the other side will act
nonviolently, but that it will act less repressively
than in violent upraisings.
 The goal of nonviolence is to end injustice
(Hildegard Goss-Mayr)
 Defending human rights without violating human
rights.
 pragmatically : Besides being less harmful,
nonviolence is more effective and efficient than
violence.
The Meaning of Nonviolence, for
K-Wustrow: AIMS
 end the logic of violence and counter-violence,
 find alternatives in dealing with conflict
 stand up actively and creatively for social change
 talking about one‘s own personal, social and
global actions
 to reduce violence, including also exploitation,
injustice and exertion of power
 take decision in consensus and to work
together equitably
The Meaning of Nonviolence, for
K-Wustrow, AIMS:
 Nonviolence does not mean defenselessness
 Conflicts are not to be avoided,
 but it means to become aware of them, make them visible
in a constructive and creative way, and tackle them,
 nonviolent attitude, to become aware of one‘s own
physical, verbal, psychological exertions of violence against
humans
 Nonviolence includes, to abstain from the use of violence in
disputes, and not to react to threats or uses of violence
with fear, anger or counter-violence.
 Nonviolence entails courage, determination,
boldness to stand up for one‘s beliefs, sensitivity,
and stamina.
Different Discourses on the Way to
Social Change
K-Wustrow is using three overlapping and interacting
discourses to describe and promote social change:
Civilian, Nonviolent
Conflict Transformation
Social Movements, using
Nonviolent Action
Human Rights
Empowerment in Asymmetric
Conflict (Diana Francis)
• Latent conflict,
oppression,
absence of
human rights,
power
assymmetry
Awareness-
raising
• Open conflict,
power shift
Nonviolent
Action
• Conflict
resolution &
Peacebuilding
Negotiation,
reconflictation
 1. conflicts as chances for nonviolent social
change
 We assume, that in a conflict, needs and interests
of people can get to be negotiated.
 2. Civil, Nonviolent Conflict Management
means, to consciously build on non-military
means to avoid or settle violent conflict, or
provide follow-up care.
 3. Responsibility for nonviolent tackling of
conflicts with those who are directly involved
Nonviolent Change and Conflict
Transformation
Nonviolent Action
1. Nonviolent Action means for KW,
=> awake the public / awareness-raising.
 key ingredients of civilian, nonviolent conflict management
 NV Action points to existing injustice through different
methods, and tries to stimulate change and the resolution of
the injustice
2. Goal determines the means.
 means of nonviolent action are diverse, for example: street
theatre, demonstrations, human chains or vigils (night
watch).
3. Nonviolent Action can also be an act of Civil Disobedience
[Громадянська непокору]
K-Wustrow’s Stance
KURVE Wustrow is not „neutral in conflict“, but
„partisan [follower] on the side of human
rights“.
K-Wustrow intends to strengthen movements, are
„rights-based“ social movements, i.e. movements
focussing on human rights,
K-Wustrow‘s core values of respect of every living
being, as well as the environment and nature,
justice, equity and self-determination.
Inner State: Nonviolent Action
for Human Rights
nonviolent action campaigns can address
specific issues,
Mobilising and awareness raising campaigns help to
build a base in society
If a political system is build on human rights
violations, implementing a constructive programme -
can bring about systematic changes
action forms of social movements and the risks
involved, depend on the level of political freedom and
oppression in a given context.
Example: Anti-Nuclear
Movement, Germany
 Since the 1970s, there has been massive protest against
nuclear energy in Germany, due to its high risks for
humans and nature.
 After the Fukushima catastrophe, the government of
Germany decided to phase out nuclear energy.
Protest and Persuasion
 Public speeches
 Leaflets
 Lobbying
 Vigils and marches
 Wearing of Symbols
 Performances of Plays and Music
 Demonstrative funerals
 Teach-In‘s
 Walk-Out‘s
 Turning One‘s Back
The standing man, Turkey 2013
Non-Cooperation
 Student Strike
 Stay-at-home
 Consumers‘ boycott
 Walk-out
 Slowdown Strike
 Noncooperation with conscription or deportation
 Civil disobedience of „illegitimate“ laws [Ukraine
2014 – Yanukovitchs Anti-Protest-law]
 Noncooperation by constituent government units
Intervention
 Hunger strike
 Sit in
 Nonviolent land seizure
 Reverse Trial
 Alternative markets
 Overloading of administrative system
 Alternative communication system
 Dual sovereignty and parallel government
„Sumud“: Upcycling & gardening to enable steadfastness
on illegalised land in the face of occupation,
occupied Palestinian Territory 2016
Discussion, dilemmas & „tricky
questions“
 Variety of definition of violence:
 For different contexts, the line
between violence and nonviolence
can differ.
 There are no easy answers to this,
and both among K-Wustrow team
and partners exist different
approaches.
Dilemmas and Tricky Questions
 In some contexts, nonviolence is seen as passive, is
used by a specific political actor, or has a religious
connotation.
 There are varying degrees of pacifism vs pragmatism.
 Some rather use nonviolence in an inter-personal
context (e.g. nonviolent communication).
 In other contexts, social movement actors are very
much linked with political parties or their goals are
not transparent or clearly on the side of human rights
The role of third Parties:
Do No Harm considerations
While K-Wustrow does not see itself as part of the social
movements in the partner countries.
 International financing brings about a further set of „Do No
Harm“ considerations: For example,
◦ What could be political interests attached to this money, and in how far
is that relevant? And/or could this funding backfire in terms of
accusations against the movement actors to be „bought“ by „Western
conspiracy“?
◦ Could external funding of one actor in a social movement support
fragmentation of the movement? What are advantages (e.g. more
human resources) and disadvantages (e.g. inequality among activists)
of funding personnel capacities in social movements?
◦ How can International Peace Workers effectively support social
movement actors without becoming part of or even dominating them?
Is their presence helpful, harmful or even risky, for either side? What
are the „Implicit Ethical Messages“ attached to their „mode of
operation“?
 Nonviolent action is only one part and strategy of conflict transformation,
and needs to be strategically used and connected with a conflict
transformation logic.
 Working in the context of social movements is highly dynamic and usually
needs a lot of adaptation and re-strategising. It obviously requires a lot of
flexibility, courage and self-care of the activists involved.
 In contexts where we cooperate directly with social movement actors as
part of a CPS project, being a third party actor demands a very high
degree of balancing flexibility and empathy on the one hand and self-care
and self-reflection on the other hand by International Peace Workers, so
that they can sustainably contribute with an „embedded external
perspective“.
 Only some of our CPS projects have a focus on rights-based social
movements and nonviolent action, but in all we do encourage active
linking up, seek to create synergies and to strengthen activists in
solidarity.
 While the CPS programme context limits advocacy in Germany, as K-
Wustrow we recognise the relevance and potential, and try to expand our
capacity to contribute to advocacy in Germany on social movement related
issues in our partner contexts.
K-Wustrow, Civil Peace Service,
and Social Movements
What Is Important for You to
Know
 In terms of our CPS project cooperation:
◦ K-Wustrow does not cooperate with partner organisations who
implement or call for violent action
◦ CPS project money cannot be used for implementing costs of
nonviolent action (however, it can be used for awareness raising
activities, seminars and materials, as well as strategy workshops etc.)
 In terms of regulations for Int. Peace-W:
◦ International Peace Workers are not the activists of local social
movements, and hence do not participate in nonviolent action in the
partner country.
◦ IPW can only do media work or speak with media if approved by
K-Wustrow headquarters.
What We Offer to Our Partners
 Practitioner Trainings at K-Wustrow
 Topics: E.g. „Strategising Nonviolent Change for Social
Movements“, „Campaigning for Nonviolent Change“,
„Living Nonviolent Change“, „Introduction to Security“,
„Digital Security“, „Defending Human Rights“, „Utilising
the Media for Campaigning and Advocacy“
 Training of Your Organisation
 You can get tailor-made workshops or strategic
coachings on the above topics for your staff / members
 Human Rights Protection and Emergency
Support
 Upon request of our partners, we aspire to contribute to
their security and assist in emergencies, be it
concerning the risk of targeted human rights violations,
particularly in context of nonviolent action.
Our Questions to You
 What is your understanding, your
experiences, successes and challenges in
achieving social change
 Are there any…
 Mission statements or regulations you have
 concerns
 questions or
 requests
…that you would like to share with us?
 Do you have any suggestions on what you
would like to be agreed upon?
… we are looking forward to
contributing with you to just peace!
K-Wustrow Peacebuilding Unit and all
CPS Project Teams, Partner Meeting 2014 All people of Your Organisation
Partnership between KW and Ukr.
PO.
 partnerships with "likeminded organization”, a minimum consensus of values and
approach must exist.
 Our partners do not have explicitly refer to nonviolence in their mission
Statement
 But existing instruments of PO should exclude violence and it must be sure
that they do not call for violence
 In individual cases partners have a different understanding of nonviolence than we
(e.g. regarding self-defense in asymmetric conflicts),
 O.k.,: if the common goal of the project is the tool “active non-violence" for conflict
transformation (non-violent action in the context of social movements).
 however, the active call for violence is a red line that excludes cooperation.
 Especially in these cases, however, an active exchange on the topic is desired – and
anyway, because we assume that nonviolence in different contexts has different
connotations, and we can learn in exchange.
Possible MoU
 Formulation of MoU: Proposal of a sentence in this regard, in Partnership
Agreements could be inserted:
 “All/ Both organizations base their cooperation on the premises of
nonviolent conflict transformation.
 All/ Both organizations confirm that they do not use or call for the
use of violent means.”
 This is very general one but on the one other hand discussion is possible,
contextually relevant, opening border areas (for example, state violence, self-defense,
structural & cultural violence), as well as referencing if in fact to physical violence or
massive structural & cultural violence should be called.

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K-Wustrow‘s Approach to Active Nonviolence

  • 1. Spreading Nonviolence K-Wustrow‘s Approach to Active Nonviolence and Strengthening Social Movements in Civil Peace Service Projects
  • 2. Goals  1. K. Wustrow origins & intentions  2. No ultimate truths, fixed rules, or „easy recipes“  3. Presentation an invitation to an open dialogue your different approaches, contextual dynamics, practical questions and dealing with dilemmas  4. Opening discussion about possible MoU
  • 3. Kurve Wustrow – History and roots • founded 1980 – activists • promotion of nonviolent action in context of armed conflict, ecological destruction and social injustice • roots in the nonviolent social movement against atomic waste disposal
  • 4.
  • 5. Kurve Wustrow – Overall objectives 1. Promotion of nonviolent conflict resolution in theory and practice 2. The promotion of cooperation of persons, groups and institutions committed to nonviolence 3. Public relations activities for the dissemination of nonviolent ideas relating to conflict transformation
  • 6. Spreading Nonviolence – What do we mean?  K-Wustrow‘s Mission Statement: „We want to contribute to enabling the transformation of dismay [shock] about violent conflict and war, ecological destruction and social injustice into deliberate [purposeful] / strategic nonviolent action“ => Our Goal is social change towards positive peace.
  • 7. Why Nonviolence? based on Felix Kolb  Violence has no emancipatory effect  Violence leads into an escalation spiral  Human beings, at least subconsciously, have a tendency to act in a well-meaning and just way.  Resonance: „the good in one is reflected in the other“ (Gandhi)
  • 8. Why Nonviolence?  It is not assumed that the other side will act nonviolently, but that it will act less repressively than in violent upraisings.  The goal of nonviolence is to end injustice (Hildegard Goss-Mayr)  Defending human rights without violating human rights.  pragmatically : Besides being less harmful, nonviolence is more effective and efficient than violence.
  • 9. The Meaning of Nonviolence, for K-Wustrow: AIMS  end the logic of violence and counter-violence,  find alternatives in dealing with conflict  stand up actively and creatively for social change  talking about one‘s own personal, social and global actions  to reduce violence, including also exploitation, injustice and exertion of power  take decision in consensus and to work together equitably
  • 10. The Meaning of Nonviolence, for K-Wustrow, AIMS:  Nonviolence does not mean defenselessness  Conflicts are not to be avoided,  but it means to become aware of them, make them visible in a constructive and creative way, and tackle them,  nonviolent attitude, to become aware of one‘s own physical, verbal, psychological exertions of violence against humans  Nonviolence includes, to abstain from the use of violence in disputes, and not to react to threats or uses of violence with fear, anger or counter-violence.  Nonviolence entails courage, determination, boldness to stand up for one‘s beliefs, sensitivity, and stamina.
  • 11. Different Discourses on the Way to Social Change K-Wustrow is using three overlapping and interacting discourses to describe and promote social change: Civilian, Nonviolent Conflict Transformation Social Movements, using Nonviolent Action Human Rights
  • 12. Empowerment in Asymmetric Conflict (Diana Francis) • Latent conflict, oppression, absence of human rights, power assymmetry Awareness- raising • Open conflict, power shift Nonviolent Action • Conflict resolution & Peacebuilding Negotiation, reconflictation
  • 13.  1. conflicts as chances for nonviolent social change  We assume, that in a conflict, needs and interests of people can get to be negotiated.  2. Civil, Nonviolent Conflict Management means, to consciously build on non-military means to avoid or settle violent conflict, or provide follow-up care.  3. Responsibility for nonviolent tackling of conflicts with those who are directly involved Nonviolent Change and Conflict Transformation
  • 14. Nonviolent Action 1. Nonviolent Action means for KW, => awake the public / awareness-raising.  key ingredients of civilian, nonviolent conflict management  NV Action points to existing injustice through different methods, and tries to stimulate change and the resolution of the injustice 2. Goal determines the means.  means of nonviolent action are diverse, for example: street theatre, demonstrations, human chains or vigils (night watch). 3. Nonviolent Action can also be an act of Civil Disobedience [Громадянська непокору]
  • 15. K-Wustrow’s Stance KURVE Wustrow is not „neutral in conflict“, but „partisan [follower] on the side of human rights“. K-Wustrow intends to strengthen movements, are „rights-based“ social movements, i.e. movements focussing on human rights, K-Wustrow‘s core values of respect of every living being, as well as the environment and nature, justice, equity and self-determination.
  • 16. Inner State: Nonviolent Action for Human Rights nonviolent action campaigns can address specific issues, Mobilising and awareness raising campaigns help to build a base in society If a political system is build on human rights violations, implementing a constructive programme - can bring about systematic changes action forms of social movements and the risks involved, depend on the level of political freedom and oppression in a given context.
  • 17. Example: Anti-Nuclear Movement, Germany  Since the 1970s, there has been massive protest against nuclear energy in Germany, due to its high risks for humans and nature.  After the Fukushima catastrophe, the government of Germany decided to phase out nuclear energy.
  • 18. Protest and Persuasion  Public speeches  Leaflets  Lobbying  Vigils and marches  Wearing of Symbols  Performances of Plays and Music  Demonstrative funerals  Teach-In‘s  Walk-Out‘s  Turning One‘s Back The standing man, Turkey 2013
  • 19. Non-Cooperation  Student Strike  Stay-at-home  Consumers‘ boycott  Walk-out  Slowdown Strike  Noncooperation with conscription or deportation  Civil disobedience of „illegitimate“ laws [Ukraine 2014 – Yanukovitchs Anti-Protest-law]  Noncooperation by constituent government units
  • 20. Intervention  Hunger strike  Sit in  Nonviolent land seizure  Reverse Trial  Alternative markets  Overloading of administrative system  Alternative communication system  Dual sovereignty and parallel government „Sumud“: Upcycling & gardening to enable steadfastness on illegalised land in the face of occupation, occupied Palestinian Territory 2016
  • 21. Discussion, dilemmas & „tricky questions“  Variety of definition of violence:  For different contexts, the line between violence and nonviolence can differ.  There are no easy answers to this, and both among K-Wustrow team and partners exist different approaches.
  • 22. Dilemmas and Tricky Questions  In some contexts, nonviolence is seen as passive, is used by a specific political actor, or has a religious connotation.  There are varying degrees of pacifism vs pragmatism.  Some rather use nonviolence in an inter-personal context (e.g. nonviolent communication).  In other contexts, social movement actors are very much linked with political parties or their goals are not transparent or clearly on the side of human rights
  • 23. The role of third Parties: Do No Harm considerations While K-Wustrow does not see itself as part of the social movements in the partner countries.  International financing brings about a further set of „Do No Harm“ considerations: For example, ◦ What could be political interests attached to this money, and in how far is that relevant? And/or could this funding backfire in terms of accusations against the movement actors to be „bought“ by „Western conspiracy“? ◦ Could external funding of one actor in a social movement support fragmentation of the movement? What are advantages (e.g. more human resources) and disadvantages (e.g. inequality among activists) of funding personnel capacities in social movements? ◦ How can International Peace Workers effectively support social movement actors without becoming part of or even dominating them? Is their presence helpful, harmful or even risky, for either side? What are the „Implicit Ethical Messages“ attached to their „mode of operation“?
  • 24.  Nonviolent action is only one part and strategy of conflict transformation, and needs to be strategically used and connected with a conflict transformation logic.  Working in the context of social movements is highly dynamic and usually needs a lot of adaptation and re-strategising. It obviously requires a lot of flexibility, courage and self-care of the activists involved.  In contexts where we cooperate directly with social movement actors as part of a CPS project, being a third party actor demands a very high degree of balancing flexibility and empathy on the one hand and self-care and self-reflection on the other hand by International Peace Workers, so that they can sustainably contribute with an „embedded external perspective“.  Only some of our CPS projects have a focus on rights-based social movements and nonviolent action, but in all we do encourage active linking up, seek to create synergies and to strengthen activists in solidarity.  While the CPS programme context limits advocacy in Germany, as K- Wustrow we recognise the relevance and potential, and try to expand our capacity to contribute to advocacy in Germany on social movement related issues in our partner contexts. K-Wustrow, Civil Peace Service, and Social Movements
  • 25. What Is Important for You to Know  In terms of our CPS project cooperation: ◦ K-Wustrow does not cooperate with partner organisations who implement or call for violent action ◦ CPS project money cannot be used for implementing costs of nonviolent action (however, it can be used for awareness raising activities, seminars and materials, as well as strategy workshops etc.)  In terms of regulations for Int. Peace-W: ◦ International Peace Workers are not the activists of local social movements, and hence do not participate in nonviolent action in the partner country. ◦ IPW can only do media work or speak with media if approved by K-Wustrow headquarters.
  • 26. What We Offer to Our Partners  Practitioner Trainings at K-Wustrow  Topics: E.g. „Strategising Nonviolent Change for Social Movements“, „Campaigning for Nonviolent Change“, „Living Nonviolent Change“, „Introduction to Security“, „Digital Security“, „Defending Human Rights“, „Utilising the Media for Campaigning and Advocacy“  Training of Your Organisation  You can get tailor-made workshops or strategic coachings on the above topics for your staff / members  Human Rights Protection and Emergency Support  Upon request of our partners, we aspire to contribute to their security and assist in emergencies, be it concerning the risk of targeted human rights violations, particularly in context of nonviolent action.
  • 27. Our Questions to You  What is your understanding, your experiences, successes and challenges in achieving social change  Are there any…  Mission statements or regulations you have  concerns  questions or  requests …that you would like to share with us?  Do you have any suggestions on what you would like to be agreed upon?
  • 28. … we are looking forward to contributing with you to just peace! K-Wustrow Peacebuilding Unit and all CPS Project Teams, Partner Meeting 2014 All people of Your Organisation
  • 29. Partnership between KW and Ukr. PO.  partnerships with "likeminded organization”, a minimum consensus of values and approach must exist.  Our partners do not have explicitly refer to nonviolence in their mission Statement  But existing instruments of PO should exclude violence and it must be sure that they do not call for violence  In individual cases partners have a different understanding of nonviolence than we (e.g. regarding self-defense in asymmetric conflicts),  O.k.,: if the common goal of the project is the tool “active non-violence" for conflict transformation (non-violent action in the context of social movements).  however, the active call for violence is a red line that excludes cooperation.  Especially in these cases, however, an active exchange on the topic is desired – and anyway, because we assume that nonviolence in different contexts has different connotations, and we can learn in exchange.
  • 30. Possible MoU  Formulation of MoU: Proposal of a sentence in this regard, in Partnership Agreements could be inserted:  “All/ Both organizations base their cooperation on the premises of nonviolent conflict transformation.  All/ Both organizations confirm that they do not use or call for the use of violent means.”  This is very general one but on the one other hand discussion is possible, contextually relevant, opening border areas (for example, state violence, self-defense, structural & cultural violence), as well as referencing if in fact to physical violence or massive structural & cultural violence should be called.