Nonviolent action, well planned and implemented, is shown in this lucid, timely, and compelling work to effect dramatic outcomes against opponents utilizing violence. Ackerman and Kruegler recognize that not all nonviolent efforts meet with success and they are careful to stress that a nonviolent approach involves great risks as well as opportunities. It is the effectiveness of the strategies employed which will determine whether those using nonviolent means can prevail against opponents who rely on violence in pursuit of objectives. Twelve principles of strategic nonviolence are established in this bookthey serve as a conceptual foundation and enhance the prospects of success in nonviolent campaigns of resistance. The authors also develop six twentieth century examples of nonviolent action from the early Russian Revolution of 1904-1906 through the Solidarity movement in 1980-1981. Each campaign narrative constitutes a fascinating reading experience and illustrates common themes, strategies, and important aspects of behavior on the part of major participants in nonviolent encounters.
This is a singularly important book. It offers more than a mere plea for nonviolence. Ackerman and Kruegler provide hard lessons based on important, and often painful, historical efforts: principles to govern the choice and implementation of strategies when nonviolence is the determined response; and insightful analysis to guide assessment and policy. Finally, the authors consider the evolving international situation and relate current themes and policies to the potential inherent in astute and deliberate programs of nonviolence. A work which will focus analysis, impact decision-making, stimulate policy consideration, and invigorate research, this volume will well serve professionals and students in international relations and numerous related fields.