Library - Pamphlets

Supporting Materials for Sir! No Sir!

Introduction and Definition: Why write these notes at all? Why write them now? We write them now; in fall 1968, because the past few months have seen the lifting of a remarkable blindness in the US anti-war movement. By anti-war movement, in this paper, we mean the peace movement in all its forms: the new left, the old left, the pacifists, the radicals and even the honest liberals. We shall call it, from now on: “the Movement.” Much divides the different members of the Movement but, with isolated exceptions, they all shared this “blindness”. Much divides them, but they are all potential Fritas. What is this blindness? What do we mean by Fritas? The blindness has been the incapacity of the Movement to see that, over the past three years the anti-war resistance inside the US armed forces (Rita) has been growing, has become a major, perhaps the most important, front in the war against the war, in the war against the system. We shall go into this more fully below. Fritas are friends of resisters inside the armed forces, friends of Ritas. All honest anti-war activists are potential Fritas. Any forms of resistance inside the armed forces is Rita. We do not consider Frita or Rita as trade names but as activities engaged in by people who may be members of different organizations or, as in the case of most Ritas, of no organization at all- except, of course, of the United States Armed Forces. Examples of Rita activity are various. For instance: heroic individual confrontations, such as that of Captain Levy or the Fort Hood Three; more or less conscious political desertion; opposition inside a unit to racism, particular aspects of the war or the war in general, to illegal orders or to particularly inhuman conditions. Later forms of resistance include organization of the American Servicemen's Union, of teach-ins, and of more or less structured anti-war groups. Today Frita is growing at last, and growing fast. More and more individuals and organizations who had, up until now, ignored the resistance inside the army (Rita) are now “supporting our servicemen.”

 Resistance in the United States Armed Forces 

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