Terrorists or Freedom Fighters? Reflections on the Liberation of Animals

Published Date : 2004

Available in



: English
: 978-1590560549


The first anthology of writings on the history, ethics, politics and tactics of the Animal Liberation Front, Terrorists or Freedom Fighters? features both academic and activist perspectives and offers powerful insights into this international organization and its position within the animal rights movement.

Calling on sources as venerable as Thomas Aquinas and as current as the Patriot Act—and, in some cases, personal experience—the contributors explore the history of civil disobedience and sabotage, and examine the philosophical and cultural meanings of words like “terrorism,” “democracy” and “freedom,” in a book that ultimately challenges the values and assumptions that pervade our culture. Contributors include Robin Webb, Rod Coronado, Ingrid Newkirk, Paul Watson, Karen Davis, Bruce Friedrich and others.


“Finally, a serious look at the latest liberation movement from both a historical, philosophical and activist perspective. Regardless of what one thinks about the tactics of the Animal Liberation Front, this long overdue book is a must-read for anyone concerned about the future of the movement for animal liberation.”

—Michael Greger, MD, Chief BSE Investigator for Farm Sanctuary, Mad Cow Coordinator for the Organic Consumers Association


“In a world driven by profit margins, utilitarianism, speciesism, and in this generalized climate of political swindle, Terrorists or Freedom Fighters? speaks truth to power. It is a work destined to shape the politics of a new generation of militant activists.”

—Peter McLaren, Professor, Graduate School of Education and Information Studies, University of California, Los Angeles, and author of Che Guevara, Paulo Freire, and the Pedagogy of Revolution


“In a century, will people look back on the era of routine human exploitation of non-human animals as we now look at slavery? Moral progress on this front likely will come because of efforts like Terrorists or Freedom Fighters?. This timely collection will help anyone interested in challenging the conventional approach to animals and thinking more generally about the state of our society.”

—Robert Jensen, Associate Professor, School of Journalism, University of Texas at Austin


“Too often, scholarly works about social movements seem to have little to do with the movement, while activist works often have little substance. Not this book, which combines both viewpoints. Here, readers have access to the logic and philosophy of animal liberation as well as its practice and reflections on our current social era. Best and Nocella have filled a huge void. Bravo!”

—Rik Scarce, author of Eco-Warriors: Understanding the Radical Environmental Movement


“Terrorists or Freedom Fighters? exposes readers to compelling ideas that will undoubtedly make them think, and make them question. It is a valuable contribution to the most critical of public discourse.

—Bob Linden, GoVeganRadio.com


“An outstanding collection of writings and an excellent antidote for the corporate welfare state’s corruptness and propaganda.”

—Chris Hannah, Propagandhi, co-founder of G7 Records


“A serious and essential book on animal liberation theory and practice, a revolutionary bellwether for the Patriot Act political climate of our times and a multiperspectival social critique and defense of animal lives, this book should find a place in university classrooms, activist bookshelves, and Homeland Security offices everywhere. The greatest aspect of this great collection may be its success in generating a foundation for greater understanding and dialogue between those in higher education, in policy organizations and government, and in grassroots groups like the ALF.”

—Richard Kahn, Ecopedagogy Chair of the UCLA Paulo Freire Institute, and founder of GetVegan.com


“This groundbreaking collection of essays addresses one of the most important issues of our times: the role of the ALF in the animal liberation movement. By examining the philosophical and ethical underpinnings of the ALF, and by demonstrating that a strong defense can be mounted on behalf of ALF actions and principles, Best and Nocella’s volume promises to breathe new life into the debates concerning militant animal activism. This book will be an invaluable resource for teachers, students, and activists interested in animal liberation.”

—Matthew Calarco, Sweet Briar College


“One of the most powerful and thought-provoking books I have ever read. Please read it and ACT NOW!!!

—John Feldmann, Goldfinger


“An important book about the greatest revolution of all time, and a crucial contribution to animal rights literature and current social debates.

—Jim Mason, author of An Unnatural Order


“An unapologetic, impassioned, articulate and above all, rational defense of the militant tactics and philosophy of those on the front lines to save the earth and all its creatures. This authoritative work ought to be mandatory reading for everyone concerned with the future of creative dissent, radical change, and putting ethics into action.”

—Ramsey Kanaan, AK Press


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