In: Sicherheit und Frieden, Vol 31, No 3, 2013, pp. 140-144
Nonviolent action is a form of political action based on the decision, either principled or pragmatic, not to physically harm or destroy human life. In many social movements it has proved an effective tool for political change, which can be explained by Gene sharp's theory that all power rests ultimately with those who can withdraw their consent. Nonviolent action applies in several fields: local and regional struggles; in popular (people power) uprisings; in the theory of civilian-based defence; in approaches of nonviolent intervention in conflicts; and in what has been called unarmed civilian peacekeeping.