The Earth Liberation Front (ELF), also known as "Elves" or "The Elves", is the collective name for autonomous individuals or covert cells who, according to the ELF Press Office, use "economic sabotage and guerrilla warfare to stop the exploitation and destruction of the environment".
The ELF was founded in Brighton in the United Kingdom in 1992 and spread to the rest of Europe by 1994. It is now an international movement with actions reported in 17 countries and is widely regarded as descending from Animal Liberation Front because of the relationship and cooperation between the two movements. Using the same leaderless resistance model, as well as similar guidelines to the ALF, sympathizers say that it is an eco-defense group dedicated to taking the profit motive out of environmental destruction by causing economic damage to businesses through the use of property damage.
The ELF was classified as the top "domestic terror" threat in the United States by the Federal Bureau of Investigation in March 2001, and its members are categorized as "eco-terrorists". On the lack of deaths from ELF attacks, the FBI's deputy assistant director for counterterrorism has said, "I think we're lucky. Once you set one of these fires they can go way out of control." The name came to public prominence when they were featured on the television show 60 Minutes in 2005.
Rod Coronado is a spokesman for the ELF and has been involved in ALF actions such as; the sinking of whaling ships, the release of animals from fur farms and several acts of arson. In 2006 he was charged as part of the FBI's "Operation Backfire", referred to by radical environmentalists as the "Green Scare" defendants.
The symbol of Earth First!: a Monkey wrench and stone hammer.
Daniel G. McGowan was charged for two counts of arsonand conspiracy in the FBI's "Operation Backfire". He pleaded guilty to avoid a life sentence, without testifying against his co-defendants, some of whom had done so against him.
- Earth Liberation Front
- Animal & Earth Liberation Front, seven minute video on YouTube
- Resistance: Journal of the Earth Liberation Movement
- Original ELF
- Earth Liberation Prisoners Support Network (ELPSN)
- North American Earth Liberation Prisoners Support Network
- Eco-Terror Indictments: 'Operation Backfire' Nets 11, FBI
- Covert Repertoires: Ecotage in the UK
- If a Tree Falls: New Documentary on ELF — video report by Democracy Now!