For all of the hullabaloo they caused at the time, and the historical attention they've recieved retrospectively, the only thing the WU actually managed to blow up was a townhouse in the East Village and a few of themselves. They never numbered more than a few hundred at most, and were long on planning and rhetoric and short on actual action.

The WU saw themselves as the beginning of an era - the vanguard of a radical guerilla war that would deliver America from the hands of Nixon and the Establishment, by any means neccessary, as the saying went. In reality, they marked an end; the disintegration of the SDS and the '60s style of student activism in general from a combination of their own radicalism, bitter factionalization, and near total infiltration by informants and provocateurs from the FBI's COINTELPRO.

Despite the fact that the WU was formed in the aftermath of the bitter disillusionment of the 1968 Democratic Convention and Nixon's ascencion to the presidency, they were the exemplars of a different kind of naïvete, the idea that you could change everything just by blowing stuff up.

Us members of the Fight Club generation would do well to look back on the mistakes of a group that actually tried to bring the whole motherfucker down, albeit in a sort of drugged-out Chairman Mao-worshipping way. Revolution ain't quite that easy.