“Ecological catastrophes are ony terrifying for civilians. For the military, they are but a simulation of chaos, an opportunity to justify an art of warfare which is the more autonomous as the political State dies out. At this point, all civilian populations are helpless victims of the scam, of this ransacking of the world’s resources.” – Paul Virilio
What is popular defense? From whom do we have to defend ourselves? Originally civilian populations were capable of defending themselves both in times of peace and war. A military racket was subsequently imposed upon them in the name of protection and popular defense lost its capacity to resist external attack. In case of total war, between the native populations which form the constitutional basis of all great modern states and the military now in charge of defending them there was no more “common culture.” Industrial wars subsequently managed to replace the thousand-year-old pact of semi-colonization with total colonization. First experimented with in South America, this kind of “endo-colonization” (the military cracking down on its own population) was gradually extended to all the post-industrial countries through the exponential development of the techno-military complex.
No longer capable of resisting on their own, or staging an insurrection, popular defense was reduced to maintaining a precarious state of survival in devastated surroundings. This reveals for what it is the new and tragic fate that befalls civilian populations. Even in Vietnam the people’s apparent political victory turned out to be the cruelest of its military defeat because it was the North Vietnamese tanks, and not them, that eventually led the final assault against the American army.