|Progressive Calendar 09.30.10||<– Date –> <– Thread –>|
|From: David Shove (shove001tc.umn.edu)|
|Date: Thu, 30 Sep 2010 12:52:00 -0700 (PDT)|
P R O G R E S S I V E C A L E N D A R 09.30.10 1. FFunch munch 10.01 11:30am 2. Palestine vigil 10.01 4:15pm 3. Peace walk 10.02 9am Cambridge MN 4. Chemicals/health 10.02 10am 5. Sabathani fest 10.02 10am 6. Haiti/women 10.02 10am 7. Safer cleaning 10.02 10am 8. Backyard farming 10.02 11am 9. Fong Lee/cops 10.02 1pm 10. CUAPB 10.02 1:30pm 11. Northtown vigil 10.02 2pm 12. Radical media 10.02 3pm 13. Working democracy 10.02 7pm 14. Stillwater vigil 10.03 1pm 15. Steinhagen dinner 10.03 5pm 16. Pentel campaign - Against the Dem-controlled FBI raids 17. Erwin Marquit - Communist Party statement on FBI raids in Minnesota 18. Kevin Zeese - Searches of activists up under Bush-Obama 19. Chris Arsenault - FBI targets US Palestine activists 20. Tom Burghardt - FBI raids activists in sinister COINTELPRO replay --------1 of 20-------- From: David Shove <shove001 [at] tc.umn.edu> Subject: FFunch munch 10.01 11:30am Ffunch 10.01 11:30am Meet the FFUNCH BUNCH! 11:30am First Friday Lunch (FFUNCH) for progressives. Informal political talk and hanging out. Day By Day Cafe 477 W 7th Av St Paul. Meet on the far south side. Day By Day has soups, salads, sandwiches, and dangerous apple pie; is close to downtown St Paul & on major bus lines "Yes Virginia, there is a ffunch." "That's good daddy, because otherwise I would have suffered lifelong depression, disenchantment, and a newly discovered extreme variant of Enkelkling's Diaremic Syndrome..." --------2 of 20-------- From: Eric Angell <eric-angell [at] riseup.net> Subject: Palestine vigil 10.01 4:15pm The weekly vigil for the liberation of Palestine continues at the intersection of Snelling and Summit Aves in St. Paul. The Friday demo starts at 4:15 and ends around 5:30. There are usually extra signs available. --------3 of 20-------- From: Ken Reine <reine008 [at] umn.edu> Subject: Peace walk 10.02 9am Cambridge MN every Saturday 9AM to 9:35AM Peace walk in Cambridge - start at Hwy 95 and Fern Street --------4 of 20-------- From: Erin Parrish <erin [at] mnwomen.org> Subject: Chemicals/health 10.02 10am October 2: Planned Parenthood Chemicals and Reproductive Health: It's Getting Personal. More couples facing infertility. Sperm counts going down. Reproductive cancers going up. What's going on? Scientists are finding that exposures to hormone-disrupting chemicals in cosmetics, plastics, cleaners, and other consumer products we use every day are playing a role. Keynote speaker: Charlotte Brody, Director of Chemicals and Green Chemistry, BlueGreen Alliance. Registration, 9:30 AM; Forum, 10 - 11:30 AM. RSVP requested but not required. --------5 of 20-------- From: Women Against Military Madness <wamm [at] mtn.org> Subject: Sabathani fest 10.02 10am Sabathani Community Center Annual Event: "Up and Rising Festival" Saturday, October 2, 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Sabathani Community Center, 310 East 38th Street, Minneapolis. The Sabathani Community Center Annual Event will be host to a number of activities including; music, entertainment, food, games, and information about community services at Sabathani. WAMM will have an information booth available at the event. Endorsed by: WAMM. --------6 of 20-------- From: Jason Stone <jason.stone [at] yahoo.com> Subject: Haiti/women 10.02 10am Coffee Hour: Haitians Rebuilding Haiti; Local Connections 10/2/10 10:00am-11:45am At the Resource Center of the Americas Presented in English This Coffee Hour will be about the strength of the women of Haiti. Speaker: Rea Dol & Paul Miller. Rea Dol, director of the school Sopudep in Port-au-Prince (PAP). She will be accompanied by her sponser, Paul Miller, from Nothfield, MN, from the group Haiti Justice Alliance of Northfield. Contact Information: Rebecca Cramer rebacramer [at] gmail.com --------7 of 20-------- From: Amber Garlan <agarlan [at] hammclinic.org> From: Jenny Heiser [mailto:jennylh [at] comcast.net] Subject: Safer cleaning 10.02 10am This invitation is being shared with you because I very much care about your health and that of ones you love -- this includes all the men in our lives too. It's why I do not use any synthetic chemicals in my business' cleaning products whether for use at my home or my clients' homes. It's why I've used straight vinegar as a fabric softener for years, as it has been well-documented that fabric softeners contain chemicals that are known hormone interrupters. No doubt this event will alert us to other chemical hazards that we encounter everyday. Hope to see you on October 2nd. Feel free to share this invitation with your sisters, daughters, nieces, daughters-in-law, brothers, sons, nephews, sons-in-law and anyone else important in your life. Join us on Saturday, October 2nd for a free public forum of health: Neighborhood House (Wellstone Community Center) 179 Robie Street East, St. Paul, MN 55107 Registration begins at 9:30, 10-11:30 Forum RSVP requested, but not required Contact Katie at krojas-jahn [at] iatp.org or 612.870.3407 Learn about ways to protect your health by choosing safe cosmetics, non-toxic cleaners and other safe products. Find out how public policies could better protect our health and how to get involved in advocating for these policies. Keynote Speaker :Charlotte Brody, RN Director of Chemicals and Green Chemistry, BlueGreen Alliance Charlotte Brody joined the BlueGreen Alliance as Director of Chemicals and Green Chemistry in January 2010. Prior to joining the BlueGreen Alliance, she was the National Field Director for Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families, a nationwide effort to pass smart federal policies to protect us from toxic chemicals. A registered nurse, Charlotte previously served as the Director of Programs for Green For All, Executive Director of Commonweal, a founder and Executive Director of Health Care Without Harm and the Public Affairs Director and Executive Director of a Planned Parenthood affiliate in North Carolina. --------8 of 20-------- From: Do It Green! Minnesota <Do_It_Green_Minnesota [at] mail.vresp.com> Subject: Backyard farming 10.02 11am Upcoming Do It Green! Minnesota Workshops - Building sustainable, self-sufficient lifestyles Backyard Homesteading October 2nd; 11:00am-1:30pm $10 or $8 for Do It Green! Members Tour an organic farm in Winsted, Minnesota! Learn from the folks that have tried it all: raising ducks and chickens in suburbia, how to milk a goat, make cheese, grow enough produce to feed your family on pennies a day, preserve the harvest, make cider from your own apple trees, make your own flour and more! Bring a dish for a picnic potluck and your extra garden harvest for a produce exchange. To learn more about the Winstead Organics Farm, Read this article on how the organic farm began and has grown. For registration and workshop details email info [at] doitgreen.org or call 612-345-7973. For additional details visit; Do It Green! Workshops http://cts.vresp.com/c/?twincitiesgreenguide/8e738d72af/8acadfd1b4/8da313fdd0 --------9 of 20-------- From: Margie Andreason <margie [at] aapip.org> Subject: Fong Lee/cops 10.02 1pm Rally & Press Conference for Fong Lee 10/2 1pm Rally & Press Conference for Fong Lee Saturday, Oct 2nd from 1pm - 3pm @ Cityview Elementary (3350 North 4th St. Minneapolis, MN 55412) Come join family, friends, artists and activists support Fong Lee's family decision to take their lawsuit to the Supreme Court. On July 22, 2006, Fong Lee was with a group of friends riding bikes near the North Minneapolis Cityview Elementary School when Minneapolis police officers chased them across the playground. Officer Jason Andersen shot Fong Lee eight times, in the back, side, and then five more shots into Lee's chest as he lay on the ground. Since then the family has struggled so hard to find lawyers to support them and have run into many obstacles in the legal system. Join folks this Sat, Oct 2nd at 1pm for a rally and press conference at Cityview Elementary (where Fong Lee was killed). We'll be having stations out for folks to learn more about the case and we'll be having music and community organizers speak. We're expecting both local and national media at the event. Say NO to racial profiling & police brutality! --------10 of 20-------- From: Michelle Gross <mgresist [at] visi.com> Subject: CUAPB 10.02 1:30pm Meetings: Every Saturday at 1:30 p.m. at Walker Church, 3104 16th Avenue South http://www.CUAPB.org Communities United Against Police Brutality 3100 16th Avenue S Minneapolis, MN 55407 Hotline 612-874-STOP (7867) --------11 of 20-------- From: Vanka485 [at] aol.com Subject: Northtown vigil 10.02 2pm Peace vigil at Northtown (Old Hwy 10 & University Av), every Saturday 2-3pm --------12 of 20-------- From: "Jaime (Brian) Hokanson" <bjhokanson [at] gmail.com> Subject: Radical media 10.02 3pm October 2--Indymedia/EXCO Workshop Advance registratoion is preferred but not required--register at http://excotc.org/workshop/make-media-make-trouble Make Media, Make Trouble Saturday, October 2, 2010 3-5pm Hosmer Library (lower level) 347 East 36th Street Minneapolis, MN 55408 Workshop Description: In this 2-hour participatory workshop, we will first collectively examine some movement media (that is, media created from inside social movements for the explicit purpose of furthering radical change) from various local/global struggles crossing race, age, class and gender identities. Then, we'll do some mediamaking of our own. Bring your creative mind, political passions and willingness to interact. (And, if you want, a pencil, crayons, videocamera... whatever tools might come in handy!) Participants will leave with tricks, tactics and inspiration for 1) making media for radical social change, and 2) taking action to make another wor(l)d possible. Printed resources will also be available for participants to take home. Register for this workshop via EXCO and a confirmation email/phone call will be made at least one week before the date. About the Facilitator: Jaime is a Twin Cities Indymedia collective member, writer and discontent in south Minneapolis with experience facilitating participatory media trainings/workshops. To talk or ask questions, email me: bjhokanson[at]gmail.com. Twin Cities Indymedia, or the Twin Cities Independent Media Center (TCIMC), is the Minneapolis-St. Paul outlet of the global Indymedia Network, a global network of collectively run volunteer-and-movement-powered media outlets for the creation of radical, accurate, and passionate tellings of the truth. We work out of a love and inspiration for people who continue to work for a better world, despite commercial media's distortions and unwillingness to cover the efforts to free humanity. At TCIMC, publish your media and events: http://twincities.indymedia.org/publish<http://tc.indymedia.org/publish>check out the latest submitted news: http://twincities.indymedia.org/local read more about us: http://twincities.indymedia.org/page/about or follow us if you're on facebook<http://www.facebook.com/pages/Twin-Cities-Indymedia/112729025428014>and twitter <http://twitter.com/tcimc>. --------13 of 20-------- From: Tom Dooley <fellowcommoditydooley [at] gmail.com> Subject: Working Democracy 10.02 7pm Obama's voice is heard several times a day on KTNF AM 950 saying, "CHANGE IS HAPPENING" Is it really? Most people don't believe it. Obama is called Bush III (or sometimes Bush IV if Clinton is included) At any rate, change WILL happen when a critical mass of us workers become "CLASS CONSCIOUS". Helping in this is STRATEGY FOR CHANGE, by Jeff Miller, the current topic of Working Democracy's programs at Mayday Books. 7 PM Sat Oct 2 at Mayday Books 301 Cedar Ave Minneapolis 55454 Food: Yaki Tori (chicken on a stick) and vegetarian egg rolls. Plus more. FFI Mayday 612 333 4719 or Tom 651 645 0295 --------14 of 20-------- From: scot b <earthmannow [at] comcast.net> Subject: Stillwater vigil 10.03 1pm A weekly Vigil for Peace Every Sunday, at the Stillwater bridge from 1- 2 p.m. Come after Church or after brunch ! All are invited to join in song and witness to the human desire for peace in our world. Signs need to be positive. Sponsored by the St. Croix Valley Peacemakers. If you have a United Nations flag or a United States flag please bring it. Be sure to dress for the weather . For more information go to <http://www.stcroixvalleypeacemakers.com/>http://www.stcroixvalleypeacemakers.com/ For more information you could call 651 275 0247 or 651 999 - 9560 --------15 of 20-------- From: Women Against Military Madness <wamm [at] mtn.org> Subject: Steinhagen dinner 10.03 5pm Dinner to Honor Sister Rita Steinhagen Sunday, October 3, 5:00 p.m. Open Arms of Minnesota, 2500 Bloomington Avenue South, Minneapolis. Join others at a dinner to honor the later Sister Rita Steinhagen. Sister Rita founded the Bridge for Youth in 1970. The Bridge is the oldest and largest youth program in Minnesota. As part of their 40th anniversary Reverend Roy Bourgeois, founder of the School of the Americas (SOA) Watch will be the featured speaker at a spaghetti dinner. Cost: $20.00. Wine will be available for an extra contribution. The event will benefit the SOA Watch and the Bridge for Youth. Folk singer Larry Long will perform. Endorsed by: WAMM. FFI: Call Phil, 612-822-0522 or Genny, 612-529-3551 or e-mail philwillkie [at] earthlink.net . --------16 of 20-------- Date: Wed, 29 Sep 2010 19:35:46 EDT From: PRO826 [at] aol.com Subject: Pentel campaign - Against the Dem-controlled FBI raids The Ken Pentel for Governor campaign strongly opposes the tactics used by the Democratic Party-controlled FBI system who raided the homes of those speaking out against the war and other atrocities that the US Government has perpetuated. We are appalled that we live in a society where citizens who are practicing their First Amendment rights have been harassed and intimidated and that the current administration feels justified in targeting peace activists to suppress dissent and diplomacy. As mandated in the Ken Pentel for Governor campaign, we feel the political system is corrupt and broken, as their blatant actions have continually revealed. Until we open up the political system to a multi-party one, suppress the corporate money and influence in our government and provide a paradigm shift in the way we look at our economy, we can expect these unconscionable tactics to continue. We stand in support for the individuals and families that were unfairly targeted and for the pain and suffering they will encounter as they fight for justice. Ken Pentel for Governor P.O. Box 3872 Minneapolis, MN 55403 _www.kenpentel.org_ (http://www.kenpentel.org/) _kenpentel [at] yahoo.com_ (http://us.mc562.mail.yahoo.com/mc/compose?to=kenpentel [at] yahoo.com) (612) 387-0601 --------17 of 20-------- Date: Wed, 29 Sep 2010 20:56:13 -0500 From: Erwin Marquit <marqu002 [at] umn.edu> Subject: Communist Party statement on FBI raids in Minnesota Statement by Central and Southern District CPUSA The September 24, 2010, raids by the FBI on the homes of Minnesota antiwar activists are an abuse of civil liberties and democratic rights. A strong protest must include the demand for the return of all seized materials. The Central and Southern District of the Communist Party USA condemns the attempt by the FBI to terrorize opponents of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan by arbitrarily linking antiwar activists to organizations abroad that the FBI has labeled terrorist. The right of all U.S. citizens to oppose unjust wars and to travel freely abroad in the interests of peace and justice must be protected from FBI interference. For info call Erwin Marquit 612-922-7993 Marqu002 [at] umn.edu - [We now have statements against the FBI raids from many levels of the Green Party, the parties of Pentel and Cavlan, and the CPUSA. But not one word from the Dems at any level - nothing from Obama, or Franken, or Ellison, or Rybak, or the 12 DFL Mpls City Council members. Now why is that? Dem apologists will make excuses - too soon, they're waiting for more info, etc - in the hope that after a few days or weeks we will forget all about it, and the Dems can continue to implicitly or explicitly support and collaborate with corporate-sponsored suppression of freedom of speech and action. And of course the apologists have to get us to forget their criminal silence by the time of the big November vote - we'e supposed line up again like stupid domestic turkeys and vote for our oppressors. Support of Dem silence is support for repression. Demand that Dem reps speak out or get out. -ed] -------------------------------- Dem reps: speak out or get out -------------------------------- --------18 of 20-------- Politically Active Americans Facing Searches and Surveillance Trend of Activist Searches Began Under Bush, Continues Under Obama by Kevin Zeese September 30th, 2010 Dissident Voice Earlier this week the FBI raided six homes of eight peace activists in Minneapolis and Chicago as well as a Minneapolis office of an antiwar group. Agents kicked down doors of homes with guns drawn, smashed furniture, and seized computers, documents, phones, and other materials without making any arrests. These groups do not use guns and bombs. They are not terrorists. Their "weapons" are leaflets, newsletters, and nonviolent demonstrations. The FBI searches highlight a dangerous trend that has been building for nearly a decade: domestic surveillance of peace and other activists. Americans need to understand the context of these raids so they can work to stop the infringement of constitutional rights. The raids took place just a few days after a report of the Inspector General of the U.S. Department of Justice examined 8,000 pages of documents from 2001 to 2006 and interviewed dozens of FBI agents. The report blasted the FBI for spying on anti-war activists, animal-rights groups, and environmentalists, calling them improper "terror" investigations "unreasonable and inconsistent with FBI policy". Among those targeted were the anti-war Thomas Merton Center, the Quakers, the Catholic Worker, Greenpeace, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals and an individual Quaker peace activist. According to the Inspector General, there was "little or no basis" for the investigations. Another report found that the FBI used lies and trickery to illegally obtain thousands of records, then issued after-the-fact approvals in an attempt to cover it up. Released in January of this year, the report was the result of another Justice Department investigation which built on a 2007 report covering similar matters. The Inspector General focused on the FBI's unlawful misuse of the already-unconstitutional informal requests known as "exigent letters" to demand information which they knew was illegal. The DOJ report described a "complete breakdown" of procedures within the FBI. According to the report, the "FBI broke law for years in phone record searches". Agents repeatedly and knowingly violated the law by invoking nonexistent "terror emergencies" to get access to information they were not authorized to have. This week another Inspector General report found that hundreds of FBI employees cheated on exams related to domestic surveillance. The report described how they consulted with others while taking the exam even though that was forbidden. Others used or distributed answer sheets or study guides that provided test answers. Still others exploited a computer flaw that revealed answers. The agents were being tested on 2008 guidelines that FBI employees must follow when conducting domestic investigations. Nor do these reports cover all the incidences of domestic surveillance of civic activists. Former FBI special agent and whistleblower, Colleen Rowley reports that "in 2008, we found out through a Freedom of Information request that there are 300 pages of . . . agents trailing a group of students in Iowa City to parks, libraries, bars, restaurants". The documents, requested by David Goodner, a former member of the University of Iowa's Antiwar Committee, under the Freedom of Information Act, shows the investigation into activities of peace groups in Iowa City involved staking out homes, secretly photographing and video taping members, digging through garbage and even planting a mole to spy on the peace activists up close. Known as the Wild Rose Rebellion, the protesters were described by the FBI as an "anarchist collective". In an interview with The Des Moines Register, the FBI defended its actions because of allegations that certain people were possibly going to engage in criminal activities to disrupt the national conventions of one or both major political parties. The group's plans were to help organize nonviolent acts of civil disobedience, such as street blockades, at the 2008 RNC convention. Pennsylvania awarded a $125,000 no-bid contract to an Israeli-American consulting firm called the Institute of Terrorism Research and Response, which spied on peace groups, citizen activists, civic groups and critics of the Rendell administration. The project was supposed to protect Pennsylvania citizens by gathering intelligence on potential terrorist threats, but the private contractor, hired by the state's Department of Homeland Security, fed information to state officials about the activities of religious groups, education advocates, BP protesters, anti-tax protesters, and just about anybody who criticized state government. In Maryland, Homeland Security and Intelligence Division of the Maryland State Police conducted undercover operations to spy on people who support progressive viewpoints. Undercover Maryland State Police officers repeatedly spied on peace activists and anti-death penalty groups in recent years. The Maryland State Police classified 53 nonviolent activists as terrorists and entered their names and personal information into state and federal databases that track terrorism suspects, the state police chief acknowledged in 2008. In 2009, the state police acknowledged far more extensive surveillance with records showing that troopers monitored - and labeled as terrorists - a wide range of activists. Investigators monitored activists protesting weapons manufacturer, Lockheed Martin. They watched two pacifist Catholic nuns from Baltimore, CODE PINK and the DC Anti-War Network, which was inaccurately designated a white supremacist group. The surveillance program became public because of documents released during a trespassing trial for peace activist, Max Obuszewski, the nuns and another activist arrested during an antiwar rally at the National Security Agency. The documents showed that Baltimore intelligence officers were tracking them. In fact, this type of surveillance by the FBI, NorthCom and state and local police have been reported in many parts of the country, among them are Alaska, California, Colorado, Florida, Massachusetts, New York and Washington. This current escalation of domestic surveillance of U.S. citizens began under President Bush and has continued under President Obama. Throughout U.S. history there has been a constant battle between the constitutional rights of citizens and domestic surveillance of political activists, especially peace advocates. The FBI has a long history of abusing its authority. If we do not act to curtail these actions we are all in danger of being spied on and added to terrorist watch lists for doing nothing more than attending a rally, signing a petition or holding a sign. Steps are urgently needed to protect the basic constitutional rights of peace activists and others. These include: . President Obama needs to speak out against the surveillance of Americans who are merely exercising their constitutional rights. As a former law professor he knows the long history of such abuse and how important it is to contain enforcement. . Removal of FBI director Robert Mueller. His tenure since 2001 has been littered with abuses of domestic spying. The Inspector General has concluded Director Mueller provided "inaccurate and misleading information" to Congress. Mueller also failed to put in place adequate procedures to ensure the law is obeyed and to ensure agents are aware of the laws regarding domestic surveillance. . Congress needs to hold hearings to investigate the extent of domestic spying on Americans who are merely exercising the rights to free speech, to assembly, and to petition the government. These fundamental political rights need to be protected by tightening up the laws regarding domestic surveillance which were loosened by the PATRIOT Act. The escalation of wars abroad by the Obama administration is moving forward alongside escalation against antiwar activists at home. The groups targeted in the most recent raids in Illinois and Minnesota, while Marxist in ideology, endorsed and supported the election of President Obama. Their Political Report noted "Obama's election represents a rejection of the Bush administration policies and a desire amongst the people for a progressive agenda from the government". Now we know that the Obama administration is moving forward with Bush-era policies that target anti-war political dissent at the same time that more Americans oppose Obama's wars. Kevin Zeese is executive director of Voters for Peace. --------19 of 20-------- FBI Targets US Palestine Activists Searches, subpoenas, but no charges for anti-war activists 'providing support to terrorists' in Colombia and Palestine. by Chris Arsenault Thursday, September 30, 2010 Al Jazeera English Common Dreams Tracy Molm sometimes has a hard time paying rent, so it came as a surprise when American security forces banged on her door at 7am one morning, and searched her apartment under suspicions she provided material support to a terrorist organisation. Warrants indicate that investigators believe Molm and at least seven other activists from the Minnesota anti-war committee and other groups provided material support to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) and rebels from the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), groups the US considers terrorist organisations. "My assumption is that material support means money and guns, but they [police] wouldn't explain anything," Molm told Al Jazeera. "I think the real thing is that they are trying to intimidate those of us who are standing in solidarity with the people of Palestine and Colombia." Activists from Minneapolis and Chicago have been subpoenaed to appear before a grand jury investigation in October, after coordinated police raids on September 24. Despite the searches and seizures of computers, cheque books, mobile phones, documents and photographs, Molm and other activists have not been charged with committing a crime. "The searches were conducted pursuant to a warrant issued by a federal judge," Royden Rice, a special agent with US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in Chicago, told Al Jazeera. "No arrests have been made or charges filed in connection with this investigation," he said, leading activists to call the searches a trolling expedition targeting Americans who object to their government's foreign policy ventures. More than 200 people demonstrated in Minnepolis on Monday, denouncing the raid, according to the Minnesota Daily, while at least 100 rallied in Chicago on Tuesday to support the anti-war activists. More demonstrations are planned in other American cities and activists expect the numbers to increase drastically, as they only had three days to plan the first round of protests. "The FBI does not investigate any person or group because of their political views," said agent Rice. "We investigate allegations that federal criminal law has been violated." 'Suppressing political activity' Bernardine Dohrn, a law professor at Northwestern University in Chicago, thinks the police are trying to do one of two things. "Either it is a fishing expedition, as there is not enough evidence to indict [formally charge] anyone; or it is an attempt to suppress political activity. Neither are good news," she said. As a legal scholar, Dohrn worries about the vague nature of national security laws instituted after the September 11, 2001 attacks on US targets. "If you write articles, is that material support [for terrorists]? If you contribute resources for computers or healthcare clinics in occupied territories, or territories resisting government control, is that material support?" She says grand jury investigations, the legal manoeuvre activists are facing, represent a way to "circumvent other constitutional protections." People who appear before a grand jury "cannot bring in a lawyer. It is the prosecutor, you [the person being investigated] and a group of grand jurors ... in short it is a coercive method to get information." Jessica Sundin, a clerical worker at the University of Minnesota, also had her belongings taken by security forces in the coordinated searches and seizures. Like Molm, she denies providing material support to any group and says she has done nothing illegal or unethical. She believes that the "biggest task of our anti-war movement [in the US] is to educate our own people." Visit to an occupied country In that spirit, Molm and other American activists travelled to Palestine in 2004 to see the conditions there for themselves. "Every day people [in occupied lands] go through checkpoints with guns pointed at their heads and they have this horrendous situation, but they continue to live and laugh," she said. "The occupation of Palestine is as brutal as it is because US tax dollars, my tax dollars, support that. Sending people there to bring back [personal] accounts and pictures is important to building solidarity." Israel, the power responsible for occupying Palestinian land, received $2.55bn in American military aid in 2009, according to the US State Department. That number is expected to increase to $3.15bn per year from 2013 to 2018. "I don't know why it would be a crime to have a scarf with the Palestinian flag on it, but they [police] took that," she said. As for Colombia, the country has received at least $5bn in US military aid since 1999. Amnesty International USA, a human rights group, said it "has been calling for a complete cut off of US military aid to Colombia for over a decade due to the continued collaboration between the Colombian Armed Forces and their paramilitary allies." Justifying terror cash Rather than a vast attempt by security forces to intimidate critics of US foreign policy, the searches may have a simpler motive: an excuse for police to justify the massive infusions of federal cash they received under the pretext of 'fighting terrorism.' "In Minnesota [the state containing Minneapolis where most searches took place] a lot of money was put into anti-terrorism efforts," says Sheila Regan, a reporter with the TC Daily Planet who has been covering issue for a local audience. "It has one of the biggest terrorism bureaucracies anywhere; they [security forces] need something to do to justify their salaries," she told Al Jazeera. Like other subpoenaed activists, Molm works for a group called Students for a Democratic Society (SDS), which had been critical in organising major demonstrations against the US war in Vietnam back in the 1960s and 70s. Dohrn was a national leader of the group from 1966-70 and has direct experience with the grand jury subpoenas which a new generation of activists is now facing. "When I was called before a grand jury and refused to collaborate ... I went to jail and was released eight months later by the same judge, who said 'apparently there is no evidence against you.' It is a strange way to have to prove your innocence." Back in the anti-war movement of the 1960s, a few US activists did travel to Vietnam to see the affects of B52 bombers, toxic Agent Orange and support for the western-backed government in South Vietnam. Jane Fonda, the former activist and work-out video queen, famously stood next to an anti-aircraft gun with North Vietnamese communists, and decried the US for what she called its "illegal" bombing campaign against the country. New activist tools But today, travelling to places which face foreign military interference - Palestine or Colombia, Iraq or Afghanistan, Somalia or Yemen - is far easier, due in part, to technological innovations and the cheap prices for transportation fostered by global capitalism. Travel makes human connections easier. And activists in the US say they are struggling to educate average people about injustices committed, in their name, in places far from Minnepolis or Chicago. When Molm went to Palestine in 2004, she says the American media were not at all interested in the public talks she gave or the "injustices" she witnessed. "Now I have major media stations asking what I saw there. Now I can talk about home demolitions and [Israel's separation] wall." On this front, she says, the grand jury subpoena may prove helpful in the battle for the hearts and minds of average Americans. 2010 Aljazeera.net --------20 of 20-------- FBI Raids Activists' Homes in Sinister COINTELPRO Replay by Tom Burghardt September 27th, 2010 Dissident Voice In a replay of the Federal Bureau of Investigation's infamous COINTELPRO operations targeting the left during the 1960s and '70s, America's political police launched raids on the homes of antiwar and solidarity activists on Friday. Heavily-armed SWAT teams smashed down doors and agents armed with search warrants carried out simultaneous raids in Minneapolis and Chicago early Friday morning. Rummaging through personal belongings, agents carted off boxes of files, documents, books, letters, photographs, computers and cell phones from Minneapolis antiwar activists Mick Kelly, Jessica Sundin, Meredith Aby, two others, as well as the office of that city's Anti-War Committee. Meanwhile, as federal snoops seized personal property in Minneapolis, FBI agents raided the Chicago homes of activists Stephanie Weiner and Joseph Iosbaker. According to the Chicago Tribune, "neighbors saw FBI agents carrying boxes from the apartment of community activist Hatem Abudayyeh, executive director of the Arab American Action Network". "In addition," the Tribune reported, "Chicago activist Thomas Burke said he was served a grand jury subpoena that requested records of any payments to Abudayyeh or his group". Amongst those targeted by the FBI were individuals who organized peaceful protests against the imperialist invasion and occupation of Iraq and 2008 protests at the far-right Republican National Convention in St. Paul, Minnesota. As Antifascist Calling reported in 2008 and 2009, citing documents published by the whistleblowing web site WikiLeaks, state and local police, the FBI and agencies such as the Department of Homeland Security, the Pentagon's Northern Command (NORTHCOM), the United States Secret Service, the National Security Agency and the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency implemented an action plan designed to monitor and squelch dissent during the convention. As part of that plan's execution, activists and journalists were preemptively arrested, and cameras, recording equipment, computers and reporters' confidential notes were seized. Demonstrations were broken up by riot cops who wielded batons, pepper spray and tasers and attacked peaceful protesters who had gathered to denounce the war criminals' conclave in St. Paul. With Friday's raids, the federal government under "change" huckster Barack Obama, has taken their repressive program to a whole new level, threatening activists with the specter of being charged with providing "material support of terrorism". A felony conviction under this draconian federal law (Title 18, Part I, Chapter 113B, 2339B) carries a 15 year prison term. State-Corporate Nexus The trend by federal, state and corporate securocrats to situate antiwar and international solidarity activism along a bogus "terrorism continuum," is an alarming sign that plans for building an American police state are well underway as I pointed out in my 2008 analysis of the FBI's "Counterterrorism Analytical Lexicon". Recently, the secrecy-spilling web site Public Intelligence posted 137 bulletins produced by the Institute of Terrorism Research and Response (ITRR), an American-Israeli company, under terms of a $125,000 contract to the Pennsylvania Office of Homeland Security. Billing itself as "the preeminent Israeli/American security firm providing training, intelligence and education to clients across the globe,: ITRR is part of a large, but little understood nexus of "public-private partnerships" fusing state and corporate surveillance against leftists and environmentalists. Amongst the targets of ITRR's alarmist screeds were anti-drilling and environmental activists, permanent quarry for corporate spies and provocateurs, as the web site Green Is The New Red (GNR) amply documents. Earlier this month, GNR reported that while ITRR and their political paymasters have been monitoring non-violent activists, "including a film screening of Gasland," Pennsylvania's heimat security boss James Powers wrote in an email that his office intended to "continue providing this support to the Marcellus Shale Formation natural gas stakeholders while not feeding those groups fomenting dissent against those same companies". In the bizarre parallel universe inhabited by Powers and his Israeli cohorts, anti-drilling activists are "ecoterrorists," while the mass-murdering neo-Nazi mastermind of the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing that killed 168 people including 19 children, Timothy McVeigh, was "just a person very angry with the U.S. government". While corporate polluters and criminals get a free pass from the federal government and an anti-Muslim and anti-Arab crusade is in full-swing, stoked by right-wing goons and their media shills, it is little wonder then, that Friday's raids targeted supporters of the Palestinian solidarity movement. Neo-McCarthyite Witchhunt With a pretext that the raids were seeking "evidence related to an ongoing Joint Terrorism Task Force investigation," FBI spokesperson Steve Warfield told The New York Times that repressors are "looking at activities connected to the material support of terrorism". Attorney Ted Dooley who represents Mick Kelly, a union- and socialist activist targeted by the Bureau told the Times that the SWAT team broke down Kelly's door at 7 a.m. on Friday and served a search warrant on his companion. According to Dooley, the warrant claimed the secret state was searching for "evidence" that activist groups had provided "material support" to "Hezbollah, the Popular Front for Liberation of Palestine and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia". Dooley told the Minneapolis Star-Tribune that the raids are nothing less than "a probe into the political beliefs of American citizens and any organization anywhere that opposes the American imperial design". The political nature of the raids was blatantly transparent. A copy of the search warrant on Kelly's home obtained by Twin Cities Independent Media Center (TC-IMC) revealed that the order, signed by U.S. Magistrate Judge Susan Nelson specified that Kelly's membership in the Freedom Road Socialist Organization (FRSO) was a primary motive behind the Bureau's home invasion. The warrant allowed the FBI to take "documents, files, books, photographs, videos, souvenirs, war relics, notebooks, address books, diaries, journals, maps, or other evidence, including evidence in electronic form relating to Kelly's travels to and from and presence and activities in Minnesota and other foreign countries, to which Kelly has traveled as part of his work for FRSO". Reprising the red-hunting frenzy of the McCarthy period at the height of the Cold War, the warrant specifies that the Bureau was authorized by Obama's Justice Department to seize material relating to "the recruitment, indoctrination, and facilitation of other individuals in the United States to join FRSO, including materials related to the identity and location of recruiters, facilitators, and recruits, the means by which the recruits were recruited to join FRSO, the means by which the recruitment was financed and arranged". In other words, with a bogus "terrorism investigation" as a pretext, the Obama regime is targeting socialist political groups for destruction in order for Democrats to whip-up "War on Terror" and anticommunist hysteria prior to November general elections that may see Congress pass into the hands of the troglodytic Republican faction of war criminals and corporatists. Grand Jury Intimidation In addition to turning over the homes of antiwar and solidarity activists in Illinois, Michigan and Minnesota, the FBI handed out subpoenas ordering individuals to appear before a federal grand jury that will convene next month in Chicago. While the Bureau cannot compel citizens to answer their questions, administrative means can be used by the secret state to coerce testimony against fellow activists: the federal grand jury system. As civil liberties scholar Frank Donner wrote in his groundbreaking book, The Age of Surveillance: "Federal grand juries, judicial bodies limited under our legal system to an accusatory role, were in the same way [as red-hunting congressional committees] taken over by the executive branch in the Nixon years and converted into intelligence instruments". Historically, federal grand juries have targeted dissident groups and individuals as an harassment and intimidation tactic, particularly when activists and organizations challenged the government's imperial adventures abroad and capitalist depredations at home. Individuals subpoenaed by the state who refuse to answer questions posed by Star Chamber inquisitors can be receive an indeterminate jail sentence for failing to do so. During the Nixon administration according to Donner, some one hundred grand juries subpoenaed more than one hundred thousand witnesses in a blatant attempt to silence New Left and antiwar groups; as well, members of the Catholic left and supporters of the African-American, Native American, Puerto Rican independence and women's liberation movements were similarly targeted. While corporate media insist that the COINTELPRO-era disappeared with Nixon, FBI snoops throughout the 1980s, '90s down to the present moment have marked the left for destruction. Recently, Bay Area Indymedia journalist Josh Wolf was jailed for 226 days in 2006-2007 by the U.S. District Court in San Francisco after refusing to turn over his raw, unedited video footage to the FBI in connection with the Bureau's alleged "arson investigation" against anti-G8 anarchist protests in 2005. Wolf refused to comply with the subpoena, and National Lawyers Guild attorneys argued that to do so would have a "chilling effect" on journalists who covered future protests, effectively transforming reporters into an arm of the government. Their arguments failed to sway the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals and Wolf was imprisoned. When Wolf was released from the Federal Corrections Institution in Dublin, California in 2007, he had been jailed longer than any other journalist for refusing to divulge sources or source materials. Cover-Ups, Terror, Repression Today, as the capitalist economic crisis deepens and the "War on Terror" morphs into a multiyear, multibillion dollar boondoggle engorging defense and security corporations with taxpayer-funded boodle, labor, environmental and socialist opponents are in the cross-hairs of the Obama administration, just as they were during the years of the criminal Bush regime. Activists with diverse groups such as the Palestine Solidarity Group, Students for a Democratic Society, the Twin-Cities Anti-War Committee, the Colombia Action Network, the Freedom Road Socialist Organization, and the National Committee to Free Ricardo Palmera, a Colombian political prisoner, have now been targeted for "special handling" by Obama's Justice Department. As the imperialist occupation project flies off the rails in Afghanistan, and as governments in Central and South America reject the capitalist "free trade" paradigm of militarism, hyperexploitation and resource extraction that benefit grifting North American multinationals and drug-money laundering banks, the repressive state is moving to shore-up its crumbling edifice here at home. Friday's raids are all the more ironic, given the fact that just last week the Justice Department's own Office of the Inspector General (OIG) revealed that the Bureau had used false claims to launch "counterterror" investigations to justify covert spying and infiltration operations by provocateurs against activist groups across the country. That report was a whitewash and largely exonerated the Bureau, clearing secret state agents of deliberate violations of their targets' civil rights and claimed that FBI snoops were motivated by a concern over "potential violence," not the leftist views expressed by U.S. policy opponents. Although a cover-up, the OIG report disclosed new details of illegal FBI spying on an array of antiwar, Muslim, environmental and animal rights groups. Filled with mendacious characterizations designed as an alibi for "overzealous" agents, Inspector General Glenn A. Fine asserted that people were placed on terrorist watch lists because of "factually weak" evidence and that investigations were opened and continued "without adequate basis," not their opposition to imperialism or destruction of the environment. The conduct by secret state repressors however, goes far beyond overzealousness. In the wake of the provocative 9/11 attacks, materially aided by the FBI's own informant, the al-Qaeda triple agent Ali Mohamed, "terrorism" continues to serve as a pretext - and justification - for a domestic clampdown against organizations engaged in legal political activity guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution and is a key feature of Washington's "War on Terror" policies. Parenthetically, Fox News reported Sunday that the Pentagon "has burned 9,500 copies of Army Reserve Lt. Col. Anthony Shaffer's memoir 'Operation Dark Heart,' his book about going undercover in Afghanistan". "The Defense Intelligence Agency," the right-wing news outlet reports, "attempted to block key portions of the book that claim 'Able Danger' successfully identified hijacker Mohammed Atta as a threat to the United States before the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks". According to Fox, "the DIA wanted references to a meeting between Lt. Col. Tony Shaffer, the book's author, and the executive director of the 9/11 Commission, Philip Zelikow, removed. In that meeting, which took place in Afghanistan, Shaffer alleges the commission was told about 'Able Danger' and the identification of Atta before the attacks. No mention of this was made in the final 9/11 report". Undercover at the time, Shaffer recounted that there was "stunned silence" at the meeting after he told the executive director of the commission and others that Atta was identified as early as 2000 by "Able Danger".. While far-right terrorists are given entre to the United States by secret state agencies to murder its own citizens, organizations targeted by the Bureau's blanket spying according to the Inspector General included Greenpeace, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, Catholic Worker and the Thomas Merton Center, a pacifist group dedicated to nonviolence. In one telling passage, Fine wrote, "in some cases, the FBI classified some investigations relating to nonviolent civil disobedience under its 'acts of terrorism' classification". Given imperial assertions by the Bush and now, Obama regimes, that the Executive Branch, and it alone, has the authority to arrest and indefinitely detain anyone it so chooses without trial, on suspicion of "terrorism," categorizing nonviolent protesters as "terrorists" could lead to the seizure of individuals so designated and send them on a one-way trip to a military gulag such as Guantnamo Bay or even a CIA "black site". In a statement commenting on the release of the OIG's report, Michael German, the American Civil Liberties Union Senior Policy Counsel, and a former FBI whistleblower said: "The FBI has a long history of abusing its national security surveillance powers, reaching back to the smear campaign waged by the American government against Dr. Martin Luther King. Americans peacefully exercising their First Amendment rights were able to become targets of FBI surveillance because spying guidelines that were established after the shameful abuses of the 60s and 70s were loosened in 2002. Unfortunately, they were loosened again in 2008, even after this abuse was uncovered. "Unless the rules regulating the FBI are strengthened to safeguard the privacy of innocent Americans, we are all in danger of being spied on and added to terrorist watch lists for doing nothing more than attending a rally or holding up a sign". With Friday's raids on activist homes, the Bureau has issued its unambiguous reply to the Inspector General and the American people. In response, over 150 people attended a community meeting in Minneapolis Friday night "on less than six hours notice, to begin to respond to Friday morning's FBI raids and subpoenas to local antiwar and international solidarity organizers," the Twin Cities Independent Media Center reported. "Organizers," according to TC-IMC, "also announced two upcoming events: a protest outside the Minneapolis FBI office, 111 Washington Ave. S., at 4:30pm on Monday; and a solidarity committee meeting on Thursday at 7pm, location to be determined. The subpoenas ask activists to appear before a grand jury in Chicago, where a solidarity vigil was held last night as a raid was still ongoing in that city, on or around October 19, reported a Chicago Indymedia post". Minnesota civil rights attorney Bruce Nestor told the St. Paul Pioneer Press that he was "profoundly troubled" by the raids. "Overwhelmingly they're people who are doing public political organizing, so I think it's shocking to have heavily armed federal agents show up at their homes" ... It's all people involved in anti-war activity, and it appears to be focused largely on opposition to the U.S. policy in Colombia and Palestine". Nestor added. "This is a direct attack on people who are strong, dedicated advocates of freedom, of the right of people to be free from US domination. It is an attack upon anybody who organizes against US imperialism and US militarism abroad". Tom Burghardt is a researcher and activist based in the San Francisco Bay Area. In addition to publishing in Covert Action Quarterly and Global Research, an independent research and media group of writers, scholars, journalists and activists based in Montreal, his articles can be read on Dissident Voice, The Intelligence Daily and Pacific Free Press. He is the editor of Police State America: U.S. Military "Civil Disturbance" Planning, distributed by AK Press. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- - David Shove shove001 [at] tc.umn.edu rhymes with clove Progressive Calendar over 2225 subscribers as of 12.19.02 please send all messages in plain text no attachments vote third party for president for congress for governor now and forever Socialism YES Capitalism NO To GO DIRECTLY to an item, eg --------8 of x-------- do a find on --8 Research almost any topic raised here at: CounterPunch http://counterpunch.org Dissident Voice http://dissidentvoice.org Common Dreams http://commondreams.org Once you're there, do a search on your topic, eg obama drones
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