The Guardian

I started Occupy Wall Street. Russia tried to co-opt me | Micah White

We are witnessing the advent of social movement warfare: the deployment of social protest as an effective alternative to conventional military conflict writes Micah White, one of the co-creators of Occupy Wall Street
‘I am reluctant to respond to this trend by calling for a ban on foreign support for domestic activism.’ Photograph: KeystoneUSA-Zuma / Rex Features

I have sometimes been approached by persons that I suspected were either agents or assets of intelligence agencies during the 20 years that I have been a social activist. The tempo of these disconcerting encounters increased when I abruptly relocated to a remote town on the Oregon coast after the defeat of Occupy Wall Street, a movement I helped lead. My physical inaccessibility seemed to provoke a kind of desperation among these shadowy forces.

There was the man purporting to be an internet repair technician who arrived unsolicited at our rural home and then tinkered with our modem. Something felt odd and I was not surprised when CNN later reported that posing as internet repairmen is a known tactic of the FBI.

I’ve had other suspicious encounters. A couple seeking advice on starting a spiritual activist community, for example, but whose story made little sense. And a former Occupy activist who moved to my town to, I felt, undermine my activism and gather information

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