The broken rifle symbol is used by War Resisters' International (WRI) and its affiliates but predates the foundation of WRI in 1921.
The first known example of the symbol is in the mast-head of the January 1909 issue of De Wapens Neder (Down With Weapons), the monthly paper of the International Antimilitarist Union in the Netherlands. In 1915 it appeared on the cover of a pamphlet, Under det brukne Gevær (Under the Broken Rifle), published by the Norwegian Social Democratic Youth Association. The (German) League for War Victims, founded in 1917, used the broken rifle on a 1919 banner. In 1921, Belgian workers marching through La Louvrière on 16 October 1921, carried flags showing a soldier breaking his rifle. Ernst Friedrich, a German who had refused military service, founded the Anti-Kriegs Museum in Berlin with a bas-relief broken rifle over the door, and the Museum distributed broken rifle badges, girls' and women's brooches, boys' belt buckles, and men's tie pins.