Independent Media Center, Israel

Answer to Gilad
author: Peter Kropotkin

Gilad, I live in the region of Tel-Aviv.

Do I have a formal education in these fields? In non-violence you mean?

I learned about these aspects of Gandhi while studying my Masters in Political Science.

We studied the "Hind Swaraj" of Gandhi and his idea of satyagraha.

In the context of learning on this topic, we discussed what he meant and didn't mean by non-violence.

I heard the anecdote about the goods train/passenger train when I was in the states several years ago. Gandhi's grandson who runs a Gandhi institute was asked by one of the listeners about property destruction and the grandson told the anecdote as an answer. I also saw a similar version of it on the net.

I think that actually Gandhi didn't think that property destruction was correct action in most cases, but he also didn't think that it was violence. He thought that it wasn't usually conducive to the mindset of satyagraha.

Several months ago, I also heard Adi Ophir lecture once on this very topic, stressing the ethical need to separate violence from property destruction.

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