FBI Witch Hunt: Interview with Chicano Organizer Carlos Montes

by Tim Loc, Staff,June 16, 2011

Activist Carlos Montes, a familiar face in the 1960s Chicano Movement, moved to Alhambra 20 years ago because he saw it as a peaceful enclave that was close to his homebase of East Los Angeles. He had a rude awakening on May 17 when the FBI and deputies from the Los Angeles Sheriff’s department executed a search warrant on his home. He was arrested after the search turned up a firearm. Montes speaks to The Alhambra Source on his history with activism, and what he alleges is the FBI’s agenda of targeting activists like him.

You were a co-founder of the Brown Berets. How did it begin?

It started as a civic youth group. It became the Young Chicanos for Community Action, and then it got more involved in direct grassroots organizing. Then it became the Brown Berets, and we dealt with the issues of education and police brutality. It started small, but once it took on a broader view of the political situation it grew really fast. It became part of the movement of the 60s. I grew up in East LA, so I saw the police mistreating the youth. We’d cruise down Whittier Boulevard with the music on in the car and we would be harassed by the sheriffs. And in the schools the students were mistreated and the classes were overcrowded. Continue reading

Secret FBI documents reveal attack on democratic rights of anti-war and international solidarity activists

Committee to Stop FBI Repression Statement (May 18, 2011)

FBI agents, who raided the home of Mick Kelly and Linden Gawboy, took with them thousands of pages of documents and books, along with computers, cell phones and a passport. By mistake, they also left something behind; the operation plans for the raid, “Interview questions” for anti-war and international solidarity activists, duplicate evidence collection forms, etc. The file of secret FBI documents was accidently mixed in with Gawboy’s files, and was found in a filing cabinet on April 30. We are now releasing them to the public. Continue reading

South Korean Anarchist Sentenced to 18 Months for Conscientious Objection

A young anarchist from South Korea, Ahn Jihwan, was sentenced to 18 months in prison for refusing to serve his mandatory military service.  He is imprisoned in Youngdenpo.

Letters of support can be sent to this address:
Jihwan Ahn
P.O Box 164
Seoul, Republic of Korea
A protest email can be sent at http://wri-irg.org/node/12257.

In his declaration, he states:

I see no reason – in a legal or even moral sense – to explain to you what is my standard of conscience and the very history of how this was reached, or the truthfulness of this conscience, while I declare that I refuse the military service, according to my own conscience. I am not saying this in a childish way, but it is in fact my conviction. So I enjoy climbing up on a mountain in the morning, or going to the beach when it’s raining, taking a nap after lunch, and picking flowers from the field and putting it in a vase in my room – all these things you can freely do without permission. Not serving the military to me is just like that – a question of one’s freedom. If someone tries to take that freedom away from me, it is that someone who needs to explain why they do it. It is not me who has to explain why I feel happiness when I pick a flower, or guilt while doing so, and all the other emotional exchanges and reasons why I like to display the flowers in a vase once I picked them.

Today the main problem is that after my declaration the legal process will start from now on. Firstly, it is a problem to ask from someone who is conscientiously declaring that they prove their conscience, and secondly, it is a problem that there hasn’t been enough debate to understand why the nation-state (or to say it nicely, the community) is taking someone’s freedom away. This is basically a matter of violence of the nation-state.Continue reading

Palestinian community leader Hatem Abudayyeh and supporters claim victory


Bank returns money, government involvement alleged
By Committee to Stop FBI Repression and Coalition to Protect People’s Rights |
May 10, 2011
Read more articles in FBI Repression

On Friday, May 6th, the bank accounts of Hatem and Naima Abudayyeh of Chicago were frozen. The bank manager at the TCF (Twin Cities Federal) branch could not explain what had happened but stated that the Bank Security Act prevented him from releasing any assets.

In a strange turn of events, the bank admitted today that they shut down the accounts, stating they no longer want to provide banking services to the Abudayyeh family. Simultaneously, TCF management informed the Abudayyehs today that they were issuing them a check for the value of their accounts.

Hatem Abudayyeh is one of 23 anti-war, Palestinian and international solidarity activists who have been subpoenaed to a federal grand jury in Chicago. Many supporters of the Abudayyehs and the 23 activists suspected that the FBI and grand jury investigation against these activists was the cause of the seizure of the couple’s accounts.
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Richard Brown: The SF8 and FBI Repression

Video by Angola 3 News

In this video, Richard Brown, of the San Francisco Eight, speaks at a protest outside the US Federal Court Building in San Francisco on January 25, 2011. Brown urges the public to support the 23 anti-war activists that were subpoenaed to testify before a Grand Jury that day. All activists refused to testify and can now be criminally charged for not testifying. Learn more, please visit: http://www.stopfbi.net

Richard Brown contextualizes the recent subpoenas with how the SF8 were similarly called before a Grand Jury, and were imprisoned because they refused to testify. Cisco Torres, the last of the SF8 still facing charges, has a court hearing in San Francisco on March 2 that supporters are being urged to attend. Learn more at: http://www.freethesf8.org

–Angola 3 News is a project of the International Coalition to Free the Angola 3. Our website is http://www.angola3news.com where we provide the latest news about the Angola 3. We are also creating our own media projects, which spotlight the issues central to the story of the Angola 3, like racism, repression, prisons, human rights, solitary confinement as torture, and more.

Students for Justice in Palestine Condemns US Government Witch Hunt

Press release, Students for Justice in Palestine, 29 December 2010

The following press release was issued by the Students for Justice in Palestine (US) on 29 December 2010:

“For if they take you in the morning, they will be coming for us that night.”
– James Baldwin, in an open letter to Angela Davis, 19 November 1970

As students at over fifty American universities, we unequivocally condemn the abuse of grand jury subpoenas to chill the exercise of First Amendment rights by university students and anti-war activists speaking and organizing against Israel’s continued oppression of the Palestinian people. Since 24 September 2010, the FBI has served at least 24 grand jury subpoenas on students and activists in a secret investigation that many have called a witch hunt. We call upon Attorney General Eric Holder and United States Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald to respect the civil rights and free speech of all those who support the Palestinian struggle for freedom by immediately withdrawing grand jury subpoenas which threaten the First Amendment rights of students and activists around the country.

The government’s assault on organizations and individuals who support the Palestinian struggle for freedom has become increasingly authoritarian. The abuse of laws criminalizing “material support for terrorism” is unprecedented and, had they been implemented at the time of South African apartheid, would have effectively criminalized broad American support for the anti-apartheid movement. At the apparent behest of US Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald, the government today has cast a net so wide that it has entangled journalists, college students, and peace activists. We know that a campaign so indiscriminate will seriously impinge on the First Amendment and other civil rights of people living in the United States. This will, in particular, affect active and outspoken students on university campuses, especially those of Palestinian descent.
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More Grand Jury subpoenas in Chicago – now against Electronic Intifada

FBI delivers subpoenas to 4 more anti-war, solidarity activists
Tuesday, Dec. 21, 2020

The FBI came unannounced to knock on doors at two apartments in Chicago this morning. FBI agent Robert Parker, under orders from U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald’s office, delivered a subpoena to Maureen Murphy. Murphy, like several other individuals served subpoenas, is an organizer with the Palestine Solidarity Group-Chicago and is the Managing Editor of the online journal “Electronic Intifada”.

This continues the repression unleashed by Fitzgerald on the anti-war movement since September 24th, when fourteen subpoenas were delivered to anti-war, labor, and solidarity activists in coordinated raids involving more than 70 federal agents. Armed FBI agents raided homes, taking computers, phones, passports, documents, notebooks, and even children’s artwork. A total of 23 subpoenas have been served to activists around the country.

Maureen Murphy said, “Along with several others, I am being summoned to appear before the Grand Jury on Tuesday, January 25th, in the Dirksen Federal Building in Chicago. We are being targeted for the work we do to end U.S. funding of the Israeli occupation, ending the war in Afghanistan and ending the occupation of Iraq. What is at stake for all of us is our right to dissent and organize to change harmful US foreign policy.” Ms. Murphy is also the Managing Editor of the widely-read website, The Electronic Intifada.

In addition, three women in Minneapolis – Tracy Molm, Anh Pham, and Sara Martin – are threatened with reactivated subpoenas by Fitzgerald’s office and new Grand Jury dates. Tom Burke of the Committee to Stop FBI Repression explained, “It is likely the three individuals, like all the others so far, will continue to refuse to take part in Fitzgerald’s witch hunt. Fitzgerald can then call for putting them in jail as long as he wants.”

For more information: http://www.facebook.com/l/c1e35SZ5xcuh9euT2GF4qL5E82A;www.stopfbi.net

Contact: Tom Burke, Committee to Stop FBI Repression, 773-844-3612

BREAKING: FBI delivers more subpoenas to anti-war organizers in Chicago

stop fbiFBI Delivers Subpoenas to More Anti-War, Solidarity Activists

The FBI has informed a lawyer from the National Lawyers Guild (NLG) that at least three subpoenas to appear before a Grand Jury have been delivered in the Chicago area.

Attorney Jim Fennerty confirmed that FBI agent Robert Parker informed him just before 1:00 pm today that the subpoenas were being delivered at that moment.

This is a continuation of the assault on the anti-war movement that began on September 24th. This case began with 14 subpoenas delivered to anti-war, labor and solidarity activists in coordinated raids that swept the Midwest, involving scores of federal agents. “The FBI is continuing their campaign to intimidate the movement,” stated Joe Iosbaker of the national Committee to Stop FBI Repression. Iosbaker was one of those raided and subpoenaed in September.

Fennerty is one of the lead NLG attorneys from the legal team for the activists. According to Fennerty, “The new subpoenas are summoning people for grand jury dates. At least one of the three has been told to appear before the grand jury Tuesday, January 25th, in the Dirksen Federal Building in Chicago.”
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Justice Department ups ante against the anti-war movement

By Michael Deutsch / The Rag Blog / November 16, 2010

In late September the FBI carried out a series of raids of homes and anti-war offices of public activists in Minneapolis and Chicago. Following the raids the Obama Justice Department subpoenaed 14 activists to a grand jury in Chicago and also subpoenaed the files of several anti-war and community organizations.

In carrying out these repressive actions, the Justice department was taking its lead from the Supreme Court’s 6-3 opinion last June in Holder v. the Humanitarian Law Project which decided that non-violent First Amendment speech and advocacy “coordinated with” or “under the direction of” a foreign group listed by the Secretary of State as “terrorist” was a crime.

The search warrants and grand jury subpoenas make it quite clear that the federal prosecutors are intent on accusing public nonviolent political organizers, many affiliated with Freedom Road Socialist Organization (FRSO), of providing “material support,” through their public advocacy, for the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC).
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Olympia: Coast Guard agent’s attorney files to dismiss spying case

The attorney for a retired special agent with the U.S. Coast Guard has filed a motion to dismiss a federal lawsuit alleging that the agent spied on members of an Olympia anti-war group.

The motion, filed on Sept. 30, argues that the Posse Comitatus Act, a federal law barring the military from engaging in domestic law enforcement duties, does not apply to the Coast Guard.

Mark Bartlett, a Seattle attorney representing former U.S. Coast Guard special agent Clint Colvin, argues in his motion that the U.S. Coast Guard is specifically tasked with carrying out law enforcement functions.

Therefore, he says, the Posse Comitatus Act was not broken when Colvin attended public meetings of the Olympia Port Militarization Resistance, or OlyPMR, when the group was planning protests in 2007 to block military shipments from Iraq from leaving the Port of Olympia en route to Joint Base Lewis-McChord.

The motion also contends that even if the Posse Comitatus Act applied to Colvin, he did nothing illegal in attending OlyPMR meetings under an assumed identity.
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