Archer.Todd at ic.gc.ca:
> The other shoe has dropped. I have also been reading a bit of Lenin, and
> some of the rather cold-blooded stuff he says or condones in the name of
> Socialism worries me and puts me before a conundrum: if violence must be
> eschewed in order to preserve that moral high ground, what is to prevent
> those who are less sanguine about their methods to use violence and "win,"
> stepping over the bodies of their peaceful opponents. I believe Hitler said
> something to that effect: if our enemies had been as ruthless as we, we
> might never have appeared. If both sides proffer violence and become
> themselves instruments of reason, what is to stop another antagonist from
> using violence as a justification to get another view into the limelight
> (e.g. counter-revolution). Has anyone else gotten qualms about violence and
> its uses, and how have those qualms been resolved (if at all)?
Many anarchists, including myself, abjure violence as policy. Unfortunately, violence is extremely popular and confining it to, say, consensual sporting events is something the public isn't ready for. But, to our minds (the devotes of non-violence, that is) it is not possible to enjoy freedom and equality under conditions of violence: that is what the State does, and the State is a failure.
Of course I can speak only for myself and those who happen to have similar opinions.
Some anarchists believe that limited, distributed, defensive uses of force, and voluntary organization for the purpose of carrying it out, is still within the possibilities of anarchy and would be effective against the Hitlers (and Albrights) of the world, and point to Vietnam and Afghanistan as objective proofs that such militias can defeat powerful armies. I do not really share this belief, although it certainly seems possible that the expectation of expensive, long-term difficulties might dissuade an aggressor.
Another idea (more leftish) is that an absence of class war will remove the structures and conditions under which Hitlers thrive. One should note in the case of the actual, real-live Hitler, that his beginnings grew directly out of the imperial karma of 19th-century Europe, and that in fact many of his future enemies literally assisted his acquisition and consolidation of power, besides inspiring and informing his ideology and tactics, and providing a stage for him to step forth upon.