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When Serbia’s non-violent pro-democracy movement, Otpor, was just a tiny group of 20 students with $50, they decided to play a prank and took an oil barrel, taped a picture of Serbian dictator Slobodan Milosevic to it, and set it up in the middle of Belgrade’s largest shopping district.

Next to it they placed a baseball bat. They went for coffee, sat down, and watched the fun unfold. Before long, dozens of shoppers lined the street, each waiting for a chance to take a swing at “Milosevic”—the man so many despised, but whom most were too afraid to criticize. About 30 minutes in, the police arrived. That’s when they held their breath, waiting for what would happen next. What would the Milosevic’s police do? They couldn’t arrest shoppers—on what grounds? And they couldn’t arrest the culprits—since they were nowhere to be seen.

So what did Milosevic’s police do? The only thing they could: They arrested the barrel. The image of the two policemen dragging the barrel to their police car was the best photo shoot in Serbia for months. Milosevic and his cronies became the laughing stock of the nation, and Otpor became a household name.