Workers Vanguard No. 966

8 October 2010


PDC Protests FBI Raids

The following protest letter, addressed to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, was issued by the Partisan Defense Committee on September 25.

The Partisan Defense Committee vehemently protests the FBI raids yesterday on the homes of numerous leftists and antiwar activists in Chicago and Minneapolis. Among the targeted activists are a chief union steward in the Service Employees International Union, prominent members of the Minnesota Anti-War Committee, the executive director of the Arab American Action Network, and supporters of the Freedom Road Socialist Organization and Students for a Democratic Society. FBI agents carted away boxloads of the activists’ personal belongings, including computer drives and papers. Activists were also served with subpoenas to testify before federal grand juries investigating their activities in solidarity with the oppressed in the Middle East and Latin America.

This witchhunt is a blatant attack on the rights of free speech and association, and is intended to chill the First Amendment activities of anyone who would protest government policies at home and wars and depredations abroad. From its inception under the Bush administration, the “war on terror,” which initially victimized Arab and Muslim immigrants, set into motion repressive measures that also target leftists, trade unionists, and black people. Now the Obama administration is escalating these wholesale attacks on civil liberties with these neo-McCarthyite raids.

We demand that the subpoenas be withdrawn, that there be no charges and that all belongings taken in Friday’s raids be returned immediately. Stop the witchhunt! Hands off the activists!