Jane's Revenge

Introduction

Jane’s Revenge is a militant pro-abortion rights group that emerged after the May 2022 leak of a U.S. Supreme Court draft opinion overturning its 1973 Roe v. Wade decision, which established abortion as a constitutional right.* Ahead of the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade the following month, Jane’s Revenge issued warnings of violent responses. The group has since claimed responsibility for acts of vandalism and fire bombings of anti-abortion offices and clinics. The name is a reference to the Jane Collective, an underground organization in Chicago that helped women obtain abortions prior to the 1973 decision.*

A May 6, 2022, public leak of a draft opinion in the Supreme Court case Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization revealed the court’s intention to overturn the landmark 1973 case of Roe v. Wade. The draft ruling determined that it was up to individual states to decide whether to make abortion legal.* On May 8, the Madison, Wisconsin, office of the anti-abortion Wisconsin Family Action was set on fire after a Molotov cocktail thrown through a window failed to ignite. Police also found graffiti that read, “If abortions aren’t safe then you aren’t either.” The building was empty at the time and no injuries were reported.* On May 10, a group calling itself Jane’s Revenge sent a message to Bellingcat’s Robert Evans claiming responsibility for the attack and promising more. The message began by acknowledging it was not a declaration of war but a response to a war that had been forced on them for decades and they were fighting for their lives. The group called the Madison arson a warning and demanded the disbanding of all “anti-choice establishments” within 30 days.*

In its graffiti and online messaging, Jane’s Revenge promised, “If abortions aren’t safe, you’re not either.”* Jane’s Revenge’s first communique claimed anti-abortion extremists bombing abortion clinics and shooting at doctors had forced them to “adopt increasingly extreme tactics to maintain freedom over our bodies.”* The group further explained the Madison arson was a warning they intended to target “the infrastructure of the enslavers,” which the group promised would not survive.* On May 31, in anticipation of the Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade, Jane’s Revenge issued a call for a “night of rage” on the night the ruling is revealed. The group told supporters their anger has been stolen from them for decades and it is time to bring their anger out into the world and express it physically.*

Leadership

Jane’s Revenge has no known hierarchal structure. Its messaging support autonomous networks and the group’s driving leadership has not publicly revealed itself.*

Base of Operations

Jane’s Revenge’s first arson took place in Madison, Wisconsin, but the group has claimed to be “all over the US.”*

Membership Size and Relevance

Jane’s Revenge began releasing statements and claiming credit for arsons and vandalism in May 2022. While the first arson on May 8 was covered in the New York Times and local media, the group has since largely been covered nationally by Fox News and other right-wing media. Since the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade on June 24, 2022, the group’s national profile has risen among other media sources as well.*

Recruitment and Propaganda

Jane’s Revenge graffiti and online messaging have utilized the slogan, “IF ABORTIONS AREN’T SAFE, YOU’RE NOT EITHER. JANE’S REVENGE”* Jane’s Revenge has called on all who are sympathetic to their cause to physically express their anger. The group has endorsed the creation of “autonomously organized self-defense networks” to confront “misogynistic violence directly.”*

Violent Activities

Jane’s Revenge has been linked to multiple attacks on and vandalization of anti-abortion crisis pregnancy centers since May 2022.

Rhetoric

  • Claim of responsibility for vandalization of the Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life, June 14, 2022: “Minnesota Citizens Concerned For Life" [sic] or MCCL is the largest anti-abortion organization in so-called Minnesota and responsible for untold amounts of suffering as a result of their anti-science propaganda campaigns, ghoulish legislative attempts at social control and support for hateful bigoted politicians. So, in a small gesture of defiance and joy, we decided to smash all their windows and leave them a message from our friend Jane.

    “Their offices and infrastructure deserve the same fate if not worse than that of the dozens of fake pregnancy clinics in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area that carry out the vision of MCCL toward a hellscape in which pumping out the ‘domestic supply of infants’ is the only thing people with a uterus are good for. Fuck them – the time of us reluctantly permitting their hatred for actual living people is over. We should’ve done more.”*

  • Statement, May 31, 2022: “Within the month we anticipate a verdict will be issued that overturns Roe v. Wade, setting in motion an evisceration of abortion access across the so-called United States.

    “This is an event that should inspire rage in millions of people who can get pregnant…and yet, the response thus far has been tepid.

    “We have agonized over this apparent absence of indignation. Why is it that we are so afraid to unleash hell upon those who are destroying us? Fear of state repression is valid, but this goes deeper than that.

    “Your anger has been stolen from you.

    “To this we say: no more. We need to get angry.

    “We need the state to feel our full wrath.

    “We need to express this madness fully and with ferocity. We need to quit containing ourselves.

    “We need them to be afraid of us.

    “Whatever form your fury takes, the first step is feeling it.

    “The next step is carrying that anger out into the world and expressing it physically.

    “Consider this your call to action.

    “On the night the final ruling is issued——a specific date we cannot yet predict, but we know is arriving imminently——we are asking for courageous hearts to come out after dark.

    “Whoever you are and wherever you are, we are asking for you to do what you can to make your anger known.”

    “To those who work to oppress us: If abortion isn’t safe, you aren’t either. We are everywhere.”*

  • Communique sent to Bellingcat’s Robert Evans, May 10, 2022: “This was only a warning. We demand the disbanding of all anti-choice establishments, fake clinics, and violent anti-choice groups within the next thirty days. … As you continue to bomb clinics and assassinate doctors with impunity, so too shall we adopt increasingly extreme tactics to maintain freedom over our bodies.”*
  • Communique sent to Bellingcat’s Robert Evans, May 10, 2022: “We are forced to adopt the minimum military requirement for a political struggle. Again, this was only a warning. Next time the infrastructure of the enslavers will not survive. Medical imperialism will not face a passive enemy. Wisconsin is the first flashpoint, but we are all over the US, and we will issue no further warnings.”*
  • Communique sent to Bellingcat’s Robert Evans, May 10, 2022: “And we will not stop, not back down, nor will we hesitate to strike until the inalienable right to manage our own health is returned to us.”*
  • Flyer distributed following the leak of a U.S. Supreme Court draft decision overturning Roe v. Wade, May 2022: “THE NIGHT SCOTUS OVERTURNS ROE V. WADE HIT THE STREETS YOU SAID YOU’D RIOT. TO OUR OPPRESSORS: IF ABORTIONS AREN’T SAFE, YOU’RE NOT EITHER. JANE’S REVENGE”*

Daily Dose

Extremists: Their Words. Their Actions.

Fact:

On August 13, 2017, suspected al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) gunmen opened fire on a Turkish restaurant and hotel in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso. 19 people were killed and 22 others were wounded.    

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