CSFR Report: July 25 – September 18
It's been a busy summer for the Committee to Stop FBI Repression and we didn't have time to publish our bi-weekly reports. We'll start sending these out again every two weeks with the latest news about the CSFR.
In this report:
- Update on Carlos Montes
- Letter from Rep. Kucinich
- RNC8 book proceeds to support the CSFR
- Hundreds protest President Obama at CSFR demonstration
- 9/11 Editorials by CSFR activists
- New solidarity statements
- NATO/G8 Protests: Say no to Police Repression!
- Bughouse square debate
Solidarity with Carlos Montes
People across the country called into Attorney General Holder and President Obama on August 29, in solidarity with Carlos Montes, a veteran Chicano activist with decades of work in the immigrants rights, antiwar, and social justice movements. Montes is the target of government repression and the FBI’s dirty tricks. When the FBI raided several Midwest homes and served subpoenas on September 24, 2010, Carlos Montes’ name was listed on the FBI search warrant for the Anti-War Committee office in Minneapolis – the organizing center for the 2008 Republican National Convention protests, where Carlos participated.
Then on May 17, 2011, the LA Sheriffs broke down Carlos’ door, arrested him, and ransacked his home. They took political documents, a computer, cell phones and meeting notes having nothing to do with the charges. The FBI attempted to question Montes while he was handcuffed in a squad car, regarding the case of the 23 Midwest anti-war and solidarity activists.
Carlos Montes is facing six felony charges with the possibility of 18 years in prison due to his political organizing. Carlos Montes case is part and parcel of the FBI raids and political repression centered in the Midwest.
Carlos' next court date is September 29. We need you to take action against this repression.
- Organize an event in your community and invite Carlos Montes to speak using a live Internet video call. It is easy to do and works well.
- Please sign the petition for Carlos Montes
- Ask organizations you work with to issue a statement in solidarity with Carlos Montes and the CSFR
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you'd like to get involved in the movement to defend Carlos Montes and the 23 other antiwar activists being targeted by the FBI.
Letter from Kucinich
The Committee to Stop FBI Repression is pleased to circulate Congressman Kucinich's letter addressed to Attorney General Holder. Rep. Kucinich is the tenth Congressional representative to raise concerns about the FBI's repression of anti-war and solidarity activists. As Rep. Kucinich points out in his letter, the FBI repression originates from infiltration and surveillance of permitted, non-violent protests at the 2008 RNC.
As you read Kucinich's letter, please consider donating to the legal defense fund, getting involved in our grassroots support committees, and signing the Pledge to Resist FBI and Grand Jury Repression.
We thank Rep. Kucinich for asking tough questions of Attorney General Holder. We encourage other Congressional representatives and Senators to follow Rep. Kucinich's example by standing strong in defense of our civil liberties and speaking out against political repression.
RNC 8 book proceeds to support the CSFR
A new book, Conspiracy to Riot in Furtherance of Terrorism: The Collective Autobiography of the RNC 8, has just been released. It tells the story of 8 men and women who were preemptively arrested prior to the 2008 Republican National Convention in response to their political organizing, charged with Conspiracy to Riot in Furtherance of Terrorism under the Minnesota PATRIOT Act.
Many CSFR members worked with the authors to organize diverse protests around the RNC in St. Paul. Like us, theirs is a case of criminalizing dissent. Like us, they were infiltrated by spies in the months leading up to the RNC. And like us, they relied on a broad base of supporters to defend them against state repression.
We stood behind them when they faced trumped up state terrorism charges. Now that we have become the targets of a federal terrorism investigation, they have joined the campaign in our defense. Not only did they gather outside our homes to support us while the raids were in progress last September, now they have generously offered to donate the proceeds from their book to the Committee to Stop FBI Repression, through the end of this year.
We encourage you to buy their book!
Hundreds protest President Obama at CSFR demonstration
More than 200 protesters met President Obama outside the Convention Center in Minneapolis, MN on Aug. 30, where he spoke to a gathering of the American Legion. The demonstration was initiated by the Minnesota Committee to Stop FBI Repression and endorsed by a wide range of local progressive organizations.
9/11 Editorials by CSFR activists
Jess Sundin, who had her home raided by the FBI on September 24, wrote an editorial on the occasion of the 10th anniversary of 9/11/01: "How the Road from 9/11 Led to My Door". Maureen Murphy, who was subpoenaed to the Federal Grand Jury in Chicago, wrote "Remembering 9/11: A Call to Activism" where she reflects how September 11, 2001 shaped her as a journalist and activist and how ten years later, she and two dozen others have been targeted as part of a probe into material support for foreign terrorist organizations.
New Solidarity Statements
Hundreds of labor, student, faith, peace and community organizations have issued solidarity statements in solidarity with Carlos Montes and the CSFR. We are pleased to announce the following solidarity statements were received in the last month:
- National Writers Union, Local 1981 of the United Auto Workers
- Solidarity Statement from the Committee for Palestinian Rights
- United National Antiwar Coalition Statement on Carlos Montes Defense
- Orange County Democratic Party County Executive Committee: Support of Due Process for Anti-War and International Solidarity Activists
- Statement of the FMLN Base Committee “José de la Paz Santos" of Santa Tecla, El Salvador Regarding the FBI Raids Against the Anti-War Movement in the United States Spanish
- Resolution by St. Luke Presbyterian Church Group Condemning Government Attacks on Anti- War Activists
- Solidarity Statement from the Guevarist Movement - October 8th Spanish
Bughouse Square Debates
At the 2011 Bughouse Square Debates at the Newberry Library in Chicago, Stephanie Weiner of the Committee to Stop FBI Repression got on a soapbox to speak to a crowd about the FBI raiding her home. She's been given a grand jury subpoena and, as part of this event, shared her experience in an address titled, "Legal Repression of Anti-War & International Solidarity Activists".
Stephanie Weiner has taught English in Chicago City Colleges for 26 years and was active in her community’s opposition to police brutality and wrongful convictions through the Committee Exigimos Justicia, and helped win freedom for a number of people.
The original Bughouse Square in Washington Square Park was the most famous free speech arena in Chicago history in the 1910s and '20s. Speakers on soapboxes, mostly the Wobblies and Communists, such as Lucy Parsons, appeared in Bughouse Square to speak on issues of the day such as the struggles of the working class, opposition to World War I, and the rights of women.
The CSFR is working with the United National Antiwar Committee and many other anti-war groups to organize mass rallies and protests on May 15 and May 19, 2012. We will protest the powerful and wealthy war-makers of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization and Group of 8. Mobilize your groups, unions, and houses of worship. Bring your children, friends, and community. Demand jobs, healthcare, housing and education, not war! We encourage you to sign the open letter, "Say No to Police Repression of NATO/G8 Protests.
The Committee to Stop FBI Repression is an all volunteer, grassroots effort. Your donations are urgently needed to raise the funds and resources necessary to continue to build the fightback against FBI repression and to contribute towards the legal defense fund for those targeted in the September 24th FBI raids. We depend on our supporters to contribute generously so as to help cover legal expenses, pay for expenses with speaking tours, and help provide the resources to broaden the movement.
Please visit our donate page and consider making a contribution today.