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James Mason

Siege, 42

Off my case

Don’t confuse this with the spectacle of the Right Wing joker who stages a press conference to announce the formation of a secret, underground guerrilla army. This only involves you and nobody else but you.
I’ve never been accused of being a paranoid individual, of imagining things which aren’t there. My desire to be aware of what the hell I’m doing and what’s going on around me precludes that. Earlier I wrote a segment entitled “Leaks” in which I partially delved into what I’m about to discuss, except then it was to demonstrate a different point. At that time I was concerned with the range and the limits of the System surveillance of ourselves.
This time, however, I want to discuss definite ways in which we can actually control and turn to our own use the things I revealed in “Leaks”. Every time I pick up one of those exposes of the Movement done by the ADL, etc., it appears to me as though they are invariably about three years behind the times as far as who’s who and what’s what. There can be no doubt that this constitutes for us an advantage in itself, however accidental it may be or unintentional on our part. Clearly it would seem that the desirable thing to do would be to take it upon ourselves, individually, to make sure that the gap in current, accurate information gets even wider.
Unless you are a publicity hound or an exposure freak, it shouldn’t prove too hard at all to leave an icy cold trail.
The point being that you can do a hell of a lot more in anonymity by way of things which count, than you could ever hope to do under any kind of official, or semi-official, scrutiny. It is never necessary to foolishly attempt to deny or otherwise disown the Movement or any part of it. Far from putting distance between it and yourself, that only amounts to another kind of “grandstanding” and draws more attention—the wrong kind of attention. Morally, politically, ethically, who gives a damn? Rather, it is in whether or not you are a person who bears a lot of watching. And too, whether or not you’re the type of person who demands to be watched.
The best example of this is the legal demonstration. There you are, in the middle of the spotlight in the middle of a country full of people who not only don’t give a damn but who also hate shit-disturbers. You might prove some kind of point which says something about yourself but you’ve done nothing which effects them… except to put them on notice, giving them something to wag their tongues about in bottomless ignorance. Morally, you may have accomplished something very significant but if it had been at any time a question of morals, we’d have won the Second World War.
Perhaps, at bottom, the sad fact is that it’s dangerous and counter-productive, as well as futile, for us to attempt to communicate in any way with the people of this country. When has it gained anything for us? Those who have come to us have done so because of some inner calling of their own. So it shall continue, I suspect.
Joseph Tommasi in 1975 declared the closing of the strategy of a mass movement and opened the way for the armed struggle. Have things been developing this way ever since or have they not? I merely propose to increase this division and intensify its development for the good of us all.
No stunts, no handstands, no fanfare. Instead, care and caution. Long range planning. When you strike, strike hard and strike deep. Play for keeps. But, always in the end, it’s a matter of greater steady mileage over intense but short bursts. Don’t attract needless attention.

Vol. XIV, #10 – October, 1985

Why we are reproducing articles from Siege can be surmised: here.