Seattle: Support Civil Liberties, Protest Political Repression: One-Year Anniversary of FBI Raids on Anti-War Activists

FFI: Seattle United Against FBI Repression @ 206 713-8056, seattlestopfbi@gmail.com

This weekend there will be events and protests across the country to defend civil liberties and oppose political repression. It is one year since the FBI raided two homes in Chicago and five homes plus the Anti-War Committee office in Minneapolis, handing out 14 subpoenas including two in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Jess Sundin, Minneapolis anti-war activist whose home was raided said, “The response to the raids from the movement was tremendous. In the first two weeks after the raids, thousands of people in sixty cities protested outside FBI offices and solidarity statements poured in from anti-war, civil rights, religious and faith groups, students, and unions. Groups and committees began working to obtain letters of support from Congresspersons.”

Seattle United Against FBI Repression formed in the month following the raids, and has just produced a new video, “FBI Attacks” Who’s Next?”. In the video Seattle area activists demonstrate their solidarity with those targeted in the Midwest by showing that they too work for human rights, and therefore risk repression from the FBI.

Tom Burke, of the Committee to Stop FBI Repression of Grand Rapids said that on September 24, 2010 “The anti-war and international solidarity activists’ homes were turned upside down and notebooks, cell phones, artwork, computers, passports, personal belongings, were all carted off by the FBI. Anyone who has ever been robbed knows the feelings--shock and anger.”

Burke added, “For those raided and subpoenaed to a grand jury, it is not over. Every communication our lawyers have with the U.S. Attorney indicates he wants to pursue indictments and trials on charges of ‘material support for foreign terrorist organizations’. It’s clear to us that what he actually intends is to imprison people for their political ideas and activism to further peace justice and human rights.”

Sundin stated, “We need to continue to fight for our civil liberties in the face of this attack. It is not just a fight for ourselves. It is a fight for the right to organize and oppose government policy. To that end we will hold a protest in Minneapolis at 1:00pm on Saturday September 24.”

For further background: www.stopfbi.net