Monday, January 7, 2013


Rising early Sunday in Chester County, new snow on the ground (only a little, thank heaven), and reading Marighella paints weird unwelcome images: forming, looming as Dream Headlines:  

Thought Leaders ! 

New Normal !

Elmer Fudd !

Carlos Marighella was a dreadful , vicious man who opposed other dreadful, vicious men.

But like most of the authors included in Walter Laquer and Yonah Alexander’s invaluable Terrorism Reader, he wrote very clearly in his Minimanual. 

I cannot imagine why an urban guerrilla would need to be able to fly an airplane, but I guess that’s one reason I’m not cut out for the job:

From Technical Preparation of the Urban Guerrilla:

“No one can become an urban guerrilla without paying special attention to technical preparation.

The technical preparation of the urban guerrilla runs from the concern for his physical preparedness, to knowledge of and apprenticeship in professions and skills of all kinds, particularly manual skills.

The urban guerrilla can have strong physical resistance only if he trains systematically.  He cannot be a good fighter if he has not learned the art of fighting.  For that reason the urban guerrilla must learn and practice various kinds of fighting, of attack, and personal defense.


Other useful forms of physical preparation are hiking, camping and practice in survival in the woods, mountain climbing, rowing, swimming, skin diving, training as a frogman, fishing, harpooning and the hunting of birds, small and big game.


It is very important to learn how to drive, pilot a plane, handle a motor boat and a sailboat, understand mechanics, radio, telephone, electricity, and have some knowledge of electronic techniques.”

Excerpt from the Minimanual  included in The Terrorism Reader, eds. Walter Laqueur and Yonah Alexander, New York, Meridian, 1987.

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