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FBI has unleashed an attack on political opponents
from the ANSWER coalition
November 23, 2003

Faced with growing opposition to the war and occupation of Iraq, the Bush Administration has unleashed the FBI against its political opponents. Ten days before the October 25 demonstration that drew 100,000 people in Washington DC marching under the slogan, "Bring the Troops Home Now!" the FBI circulated an internal bureau memorandum documenting a far reaching campaign against anti-war organizations and leaders who have been involved in mobilizing large and legal mass actions.

"Under Bush and Ashcroft the exercise of First Amendment rights has become synonymous with terrorism. Today's front page report in the New York Times revealing that the FBI was targeting the recent national anti-war demonstrations in Washington and San Francisco must be understood as the tip of the iceberg," said Mara Verheyden-Hilliard attorney with the Partnership for Civil Justice and the National Lawyers Guild. The Partnership for Civil Justice and the NLG are litigating First Amendment cases against the FBI, Secret Service and Washington DC police as well as other law enforcement authorities for their unconstitutional disruption actions against political demonstrators.

"Under the banner of the war on terrorism, Bush and Ashcroft are resorting to J. Edgar Hoover's COINTELPRO tactics of the 1950's and 1960's against the rising anti-war movement of today," stated Brian Becker of the A.N.S.W.E.R. Coalition, the initiator and co-sponsor of the October 25 demonstration. "This is the domestic parallel of Bush's doctrine of endless war. Internationally, the administration has carried out war, invasion and occupation of Afghanistan and Iraq. On the homefront the government has cynically manipulated its so-called war on terrorism to illegally use the FBI as a tool aimed at stifling dissent. The movement will defend its rights, and will never be intimidated by the FBI's illegal targeting campaigns. Confronted with a rising tide of opposition, the Bush Administration is using its secret police against the people of the United States," Becker continued

"The FBI's so-called anti-terrorism efforts have intensely focused on political dissent since the resurgence of the U.S. social justice and peace movement. The big lie being foisted on the public is that these are post-September 11 counter-measures, when in fact we have uncovered in litigation that the FBI's Joint Terrorism Task Force as well as the District of Columbia police department have been conducting illegal domestic spying operations against political groups and activists since well before September 11, 2001," stated Verheyden-Hilliard. "This has nothing to do with terrorism and everything to do with using the repressive apparatus of the state as a political tool," she said.

URGENT SUPPORT NEEDED FOR ACTIVISTS PROTESTING THE FTAA

The A.N.S.W.E.R. Coalition calls on all those who have been involved in the anti-war movement to show their support for those in Miami protesting at the FTAA negotiations who are being brutalized and incarcerated in a coordinated police state action designed to stifle dissent in the United States.

Police have attacked protestors with tear gas, pepper spray, concussion grenades, stun guns and by shooting activists with rubber bullets. Medics have not been allowed in through the police lines to treat the injured.

Protestors have been grabbed, seemingly at random, and taken off the street in snatch operations conducted by police in unmarked vehicles. The police are also directly targeting the legal support for the demonstrators, including National Lawyers Guild Legal Observers. Many who have been taken away have been beaten.

Your urgent help is needed now. The National Lawyers Guild and the Miami Activist Defense are asking that you contact the Mayors, the City Attorney, Police Chief Timoney and the media. Below is contact information -- please call or email now and let them know their actions will not be tolerated.

The attack on the protestors gives lie to the claim that the U.S. is fighting for democracy abroad -- when people who participate in political dissent at home are subject to brutal systematic police abuse and government repression.

The U.S. government in pursuit of corporate globalization uses all methods in its arsenal - from invasion and bombing to economic sanctions and IMF imposed austerity plans. The FTAA (Free Trade Area of the Americas) is merely another mechanism to extend the exploitative reach of corporate domination over the people of the Americas.

Show your solidarity with the people in the streets of Miami. Miami Activist Defense asks that the following be contacted:

ALEX PENELAS
Mayor, Miami-Dade County
305-829-9336 home
305-375-5071 office

MANUEL A. DIAZ
Mayor, City of Miami
305-250-5300
305-375-5071
mannydiaz@ci.miami.fl.us

JOHN TIMONY
Chief of police
305-673-7925
305-579-6565

ALEJANDRO VILARELLO
City Attorney
305-416-1800
law@ci.miami.fl.us

JOE ARRIOLA
City Manager
jarriola@ci.miami.fl.us

JOHNNY WINTON
Miami City Commissioner
305-858-7344 home
305-250-5333 office

KATY SORENSON
Miami Dade County Commissioner
305-375-5218
305-378-6677

Local media has been grossly biased in their coverage. While this is somewhat to be expected the following are numbers that people could call. CBS4: 305-639-4551, 305-639-4601, 305-639-4426
WPLG channel 10: 305-576-6397
WSUN Fox: 954-524-0388 (Rosh Lowe)

A.N.S.W.E.R. Coalition
Act Now to Stop War & End Racism

FOR MORE INFORMATION
http://www.InternationalANSWER.org
info@internationalANSWER.org

New York 212-633-6646
Washington 202-544-3389
Los Angeles 213-487-2368
San Francisco 415-821-6545

Topplebush.com
Posted: November 24, 2003

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