The Truth About Greenfyre
[h/t Adam] Greenfyre is the Internet blog and screen name for a radical environmental activist, Mike Kaulbars from Ottawa, Canada. He is a founder of the Earth First! chapter in Ottawa, Canada, an eco-terrorist organization with a long history of violence and sabotage.
"My experience is that many people are impressed and supportive of the radical militant actions that we do. ...I make no secret of my militant activism, arrests etc; [...]
...we do break the law. [...]
In a few weeks I, and 50 others are off to jail. ...I do what I do because of a "pure, true love for the Earth."
- Mike Kaulbars, 1990
Earth First! takes protests to new level Public arrests, office invasions all part of group's quick-hit tactics (Waterloo Region Record, December 1, 1990)
Mike Kaulbars, a founder of the Earth First! chapter in Ottawa, says his group has about 20 "hard-core" members, and perhaps 80 who are drawn in for special events such as protests.
Earth First! (Discover the Networks)
Earth First! (EF) was founded in 1980 in the Arizona desert as an alternative to "namby-pamby environmental groups” that, in EF's view, had failed to adequately protect the environment against the predations of corporate and commercial interests. EF's ideological roots sprouted from militant ad hoc eco-organizations, such as the Mesa Defense Fund and the Tucson Eco Warriors, that had lurked in the Arizona wilds in the 1970s. The modus operandi of these predecessors consisted of random acts of destruction (or "monkeywrenching,” a term coined by radical environmentalist guru and author Edward Abbey) aimed at any symbol (such as billboards, houses, roads, etc) of human encroachment on the wilderness. [...]
EF pledged to engage in "ecotage," the commission of illegal and anonymous acts of sabotage. The organization's tactics and objectives were heavily influenced by the book Ecodefense: A Field Guide to Monkeywrenching. Authored by EF co-founder Dave Foreman, this publication provided instruction for downing power lines, trashing heavy machinery and equipment, and otherwise interfering with the work of land developers and loggers. [...]
EF also endorsed tree-spiking (hammering thick metal rods into tree trunks), a tactic advocated in Dave Foreman's book Ecodefense, which urged activists to "[s]pike a few trees now and then whenever you enter an area." A California mill worker named George Alexander had his jaw shattered in 1987 when a shard from a spiked tree, splintered by his band saw, ricocheted into his face. But in response, Dave Foreman claimed that "the real destruction and injury is being perpetrated by Louisiana-Pacific and the Forest Service in liquidating old growth forests." Judi Bari in a 1990 memorandum announced that “tree-spiking must be renounced by Earth First! … [because] the alienation caused by tree-spiking, not to mention the danger, be it real or imagined, was harming our efforts to save this planet.” Nonetheless, EF! continued to sell Ecodefense and to embrace the militant anthem, "Spike a Tree for Jesus." [...]
In 1992, the Earth First! Journal published an article that endorsed "dressing up as a hunter and going out to shoot other hunters." Similarly, the 20th Anniversary issue of the Journal included a cartoon with the following punch line: "Trees are for hanging. Kill a developer." [...]
EF!'s militant message was supported by a Harvard-educated Montana recluse named Ted Kaczynski (later to be known as the "Unabomber"), who mailed dozens of letter bombs, killing three and wounding 28. After raiding Kaczynski's cabin in 1996, FBI agents discovered several volumes of the Earth First! Journal. Also found was a publication called Live Wild or Die, which was financed by EF!'s co-founder Mike Roselle and featured a catalogue of the environmentalist movement's most hated, the so-called "Eco-F*cker Hit List." Prominent on this list was the Exxon oil company. A February 2, 1994, article in the Earth First Journal! erroneously claimed that a firm called Burson-Marsteller was in charge of Exxon's public relations efforts in the wake of the Exxon Valdez oil spill. Kaczynski is believed to have sent the mail bomb that killed Thomas Mosser, an executive with Burson-Marsteller, at his New Jersey home December 10, 1994.
Declaring that it believes in "using all the tools in the tool box," EF! today affirms its continued commitment to "monkeywrenching." In 2001, EF! activist John Stephens said that arson attacks were on the whole "a positive thing" for environmentalist groups to undertake.