Good Morning from Occupy Boston!
Stories of the Day: Chicago Police van deliberately runs into and injures NATO protester. See video footage here. Prosecutors on Saturday accused three activists who travelled to Chicago for a NATO summit of manufacturing Molotov cocktails in a plot to attack President Barack Obama’s campaign headquarters, Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s home and other targets. But defense lawyers shot back that Chicago police had trumped up the charges to frighten peaceful protesters away, telling the judge it was undercover officers known by the activists as “Mo” and “Gloves,” not his clients, who brought the firebombs to a South Side apartment where the men were arrested. ”This is just propaganda to create a climate of fear,” Michael Duetsch said. “My clients came to peacefully protest.” On the eve of the summit, the dramatic allegations were reminiscent of previous police actions ahead of major political events, when officials moved quickly to prevent suspected plots but sometimes quietly dropped the charges later. For more, see Detained Protesters Accused of Chicago Terror Plot. Darrin Annussek says he walked to Chicago from Philadelphia to participate in Occupy protests, only to be seized by police in a raid on an apartment at 32nd and Morgan. “For 18 hours, we were handcuffed to a bench and our legs were shackled together,” he said. “Some of our cries for the bathroom were either ignored or met with silence.” Annusek was released Friday morning along with four others reportedly suspected of preparing molotov cocktails. At least one other detainee was released several hours later Friday. Kris Hermes, of the National Lawyers Guild said: “There is absolutely no evidence of molotov cocktails or any other criminal activity going on at this building.” A tenant who agreed to host the out-of-town protesters says the police did seize his home-brew making equipment, including buckets, beer bottles and caps. For more, see Arrested Protester Charges Mistreatment After Police Raid Apartment. Three Occupy activists raided on May 16 and disappeared for a period of time by Chicago police were brought before a bond judge and officially charged with material support for terrorism, conspiracy to commit terrorism and possession of explosives or explosive or incendiary devices. The case marks the first time that state prosecutors have used the Illinois Terrorism law to prosecute individuals. Deutsch called the investigation, targeting and raid of these activists “worse than entrapment.” According to the NLG, two police informants infiltrated the group. The NLGE believes “they’re the ones who provoked this and they’re the ones,” who committed the “illegal activity” and had the “illegal materials.” For more, see CPD, FBI and Secret Service Claim NATO 3 Came to Chicago to Commit “Terrorist Acts of Violence.“ One of the suspects, identified by police as Jared Chase, 24, is from Keene, N.H. and spent time in Boston, where he participated in the Occupy Boston protests last fall. A Facebook page bearing Chase’s name, picture, and other personal information, calls him a DJ and says he is studying 3D animation and game-programming at NHTI, a community college in Concord, N.H. For more, see NATO Suspect has New England Ties. This video shows Chicago police questioning occupiers about Occupy Chicago, the NATO protests, and threatening violence after arbitrarily pulling over their car in the Bridgeport neighborhood of Chicago earlier this week. The video went viral after the activists posted it to social media. Now, three of them are being charged with terrorism in the wake of a warrantless preemptive raid on activists’ homes in Chicago. An attorney from the National Lawyers Guild describes the video: They were driving in a car and were pulled over without any kind of justification or reason by the Chicago police department. They were surrounded by police and they were questioned for a very long period of time about what they were doing in Chicago, why they were here to protest, what their political affiliations were, how they identified politically—All kinds of absolutely outrageous questions that certainly do not indicate any kind of illegal behavior because it is not constitutional simply to accuse them of a crime because of a political belief. For more, including the video, see Free the #NATO3! And a Los Angeles man was ordered held in lieu of $10,000 bail Wednesday for allegedly punching a Chicago Police sergeant off his bike during an anti-deportation protest in the Loop. The police report did not include any mention of the officer falling off his bicycle or suffering any injuries. Five of Johnson’s fellow demonstrators came to court to show support for their friend — which police said was one of two arrests for attacking a police officer in the run up so far to the NATO Summit. Johnson was the only NATO-related protester charged with a felony. The men who came from Dallas, New York and San Diego for the NATO weekend denied Johnson punched the officer. “He never pushed anyone off the bike. He’s a non-violent person,” said Chris McKay, who is with Occupy Walk USA. “The cop grabbed him by the collar and when he turned to see who he was, his arm brushed against the officer.” For more, see Danny Johnson, Occupy Walk USA team member, arrested in Chicago. And entrapment is illegal – but the question of whether law enforcement set up a legal sting or illegal entrapment is for a jury to decide. For more, see How FBI Entrapment is Inventing Terrorists and Letting Bad Guys Off the Hook. And as governments around the world, including our own, face more and more popular resistance, we’re witnessing a revival of the use of agent provocateurs. An agent provocateur is the well-used tactic of using undercover military or police to join a dissenting group or protest in order to provoke others in the group to carry out illegal actions and violence. The goal is to discredit the group from the inside. Sometimes the group gets discredited with those outside. Other times the group is enticed into internal divisions and collapses. For more, see How to Identify an Agent Provocateur. And in other news, a judge may have found unconstitutional the law that allows people to be held indefinitely without trial by the military, but the House of Representatives voted Friday to keep it anyway. On Wednesday, Federal Judge Katherine Forrest found that the law violates rights to free speech and due process. But House members defended it, ultimately voting 238 to 182 against an amendment to guarantee civilian trials for any terrorism suspect arrested in the United States. For more, see Bill to End Indefinite Detention Fails in House.
Other Occupies/Protests: The Twin Cities activists who had their homes raided by the FBI last September are starting to learn more about why they’re being investigated by a Chicago grand jury in relation to material support of terrorism. Lawyers for the activists have learned from prosecutors that the feds sent an undercover law enforcement agent to infiltrate the Twin Cities Anti-War Committee in April 2008, just as the group was planning its licensed protests at the Republican National Convention. Last fall the Justice Department’s Inspector General released a scathing report that criticized the FBI for invoking anti-terrorist laws to justify their investigations and harassment of groups including Greenpeace, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, and the Catholic Worker. ”This is exactly what the Inspector General’s report was talking about,” Sundin told City Pages this morning. “The FBI doesn’t have the right to spy on us. It’s an abuse of our democratic rights. We’re supposed to have freedom of association, not, ‘You can associate but we’re going to spy on you.’” For more, see Secret Government Informer Infiltrated Minnesota Activist Groups.
“I can’t understand why people are frightened of new ideas. I’m frightened of the old ones.” John Cage
- Sponsored by the Howard Zinn Memorial Lecture Series: Book launch for Truth and Revolution by Michael Staudenmaier. May 22 at 6 pm at Encuentro 5, 33 Harrison Ave, Boston. Michael Staudenmaier speaks on the Sojourner Truth Organization/STO. STO was Founded in Chicago in 1969 from the rubble of the recently crumbled SDS, the Sojourner Truth Organization (STO) brought working-class consciousness to the forefront of New Left discourse, sending radicals back into the factories and thinking through the integration of radical politics into everyday realities. Through the influence of founding members like Noel Ignatiev and Don Hamerquist, STO took a Marxist approach to the question of race and revolution, exploring the notion of “white skin privilege,” and helping to lay the groundwork for the discipline of critical race studies. Michael Staudenmaier is a doctoral candidate in history at the University of Illinois.
- Planning the Next Occupation: June 1, 7pm-11pm, Parkman Bandstand on the Boston Common. We call on every supporter (past and present) to come to this popular assembly. We ask that you help be the change we all want to see in this world. We ask you to come ,and share YOUR VOICE as occupy begins it’s next step towards SOCIAL JUSTICE! Oh and bring a tent (who knows what we all will together decide!)
- June 2, 2012: Occupy the Judge Rotenberg Center Peaceful Protest. Occupy the JRC is a coalition of cross disability activists and allies who are determined to get the Judge Rotenberg Center in Canton, Massachusetts closed down, or at the very least force them to stop using electric shocks, restraints, and aversives on the students who are sent there. For those who may not know, the Judge Rotenberg Center (JRC) is a “school of last resort” for children with developmental disabilities (many of their students are Autistic) or other difficulties which eschews the use of psychiatric medications in favor of physical restraints and aversives, including the use of two-second skin shocks. Speakers: Senator Brian A. Joyce, Kat Whitehead (Community Alliance for the Ethical Treatment of Youth), Dan Fisher (National Empowerment Center), Ari Ne’eman (Autistic Self Advocacy Network), Laurie Ahern (Disability Rights International), Daniel Hazen (Voices of the Heart), Joseph Sitinbull (Helping Others to Promote Equality) and more! For more information, contact: Daniel@ (518) 932-3137. firstname.lastname@example.org and see http://www.occupyjrc.org.
- Anti ACTA, SOPA, PIPA, CCI, CISPA, MPAA, RIAA, MPA, ARAA, internet ID, censorship protest June 9, 2012.
Liberty Plaza, New York, NY 10006
NATIONWIDE, CALLING ALL OCCUPIERS!!!! Knowledge should be free. This is a serious threat to education of people lower on the caste system. It will damage opportunity for all greatly. It also promotes monopoly and greed within governance as well as control of the people. This protest is to take place on the same date as a similar protest taking place in Paris France. MAKE YOUR VOICES HEARD. SUPPORT FAIR USE AND EDUCATION! Facebook event page: http://www.facebook.com/events/287232521354857
- June 11: THREE national routes… THIRTEEN hub cities… TWENTY days… ONE NATIONAL OCCUPY GATHERING IN THE CITY OF BROTHERLY LOVE. The Occupy Caravan plan is officially launched! ”This Land is Our Land” Summer Caravan kicks off June 11 from Seattle, San Francisco and Los Angeles. We will travel three routes across America on our way to Philadelphia for the five-day Occupy National Gathering that ends July 4 on Independence Mall! At each stop, cities will be organizing events to welcome the Caravan which brings with it musicians, speakers and performers — a traveling democratic road show that educates as it entertains! Feed-in caravans will be joining along the way, and a full day of celebration is scheduled in half a dozen Hub cities. Invite neighbors, friends and family to come out for this continental gathering where we’ll share stories as individuals and communities growing stronger together — then hop on board and travel the rest of the way to Philly! How bad do you want your democracy? Enough to take it back? As we celebrate the history of America that we are about to write, only one thing is required: Our Participation. Visit the Schedules and Cities page to find out when the Caravan reaches your town so you can plan an event and then climb aboard. Official route map to be issued soon…See you in June! http://occupycaravan.webs.com/. Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Occupy-Caravan/307692495949585.
- June 22: Occupy Summer Camp in Maine. Dobson’s Farm, 78 Old Cape Road, Kennebunkp
ort, Maine. Occupy Our Neighborhood, the Kennebunk Occupy group is hosting Occupy Summer Camp with a number of folks from Occupy Maine Portland. This is our opportunity to work with other Occupy groups to focus our efforts on reversing corporate personhood and the issues related to money in politics, environment and local economies. We hope to have a good attendance to include your thoughts and ideas and to plan the camp. Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/events/238631406237615/.
- From Occupy Wall Street: September 17, 2012, The People’s Picket on Wall Street, 7am-10am. We will form a massive moving picket line on our one-year anniversary, and continue the conversation we started One year prior with boots on the ground. People from all over the world get ready to shut it down.
Sunday, May 20, 2012
Shut Down Pilgrim Now! May 20, 1pm-2pm. Groups of concerned citizens from across New England will gather in Plymouth to demand that the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Reactor 40 year license expire. The General Electric Mark 1 Boiling Water Reactor is the same design that failed in Japan. Loss of electricity was an activating factor and, according to NRC officials, could happen here. The nuclear waste spent fuel pool was designed to hold 880 highly radioactive rods and currently holds 3,270. The aging reactor is susceptible to embrittlement with inherent problems. The terrible disaster of Fukushima has mobilized citizens to come out in the streets to demand the shut down of Pilgrim. We will march to Entergy Co. and deliver a citizen’s petition to cease and desist putting our lives and our beautiful environment at risk and call for the shut down of Pilgrim now.
Calendar for Sunday, May 20, 2012
1pm – 3pm The Icarus Project WG Meeting, Gazebo on Boston Common (City Place Food Court in the Transportation Building if raining) Radical mental health support and activism.
1pm – 3pm People of Color WG Meeting, First Church of Roxbury – 10 Putnam Street, Roxbury
4pm – 5pm Socialist Caucus Meeting, Encuentro 5, 33 Harrison Ave 5th Floor
5pm – 8:30pm, Action Assembly, Community Church of Boston, 565 Boylston Street (across from Copley)
Please note! Meetings and their locations are subject to change. We encourage you to check the Occupy Boston Calendar for the most up-to-date information. There are events scheduled all day for the May 1 General Strike and regularly scheduled events may not be held.
Issue 7 of the Boston Occupier is out now, and we need your help distributing!!
We rely exclusively on YOU, the broader Occupy community, to get our papers out there to the 99%. So…
** We would love for you to join one of our planned outreach/distribution efforts on the T.
** ANYTIME you’re going to a progressive or Occupy-related event, try to pass out papers. These are the most effective occasions to connect sympathetic readers to our paper. Copies of the issue are stored in the OB cubicle at E5, so PLEASE remember to grab a stack.
** Get them to readers in your community. We recommend small stacks in small stacks in cafes, libraries, bookshops, laundr0mats, community centers, waiting rooms, campuses, etc. Be creative!! But we’ve found that the BEST way to get papers to readers is to hand them out face to face, combining outreach and distribution.
** If you are a part of another local-area Occupy movement, a union, or a community organization that is willing to distribute papers — let’s make it happen! You can just come by E5 (between 9 am and 7 pm most days) and grab a stack, or coordinate with us if you’re not able to do so. Send questions or suggestions about distribution to Julie O (email@example.com).
** We’re also trying to raise funds so that we can continue printing the stories of the 99%! To that end, we’ve started a subscription service. Read about it online here. I hope you’ll encourage those you know to subscribe to the paper as well!!
As always, we welcome questions, suggestions, and distribution ideas — send to firstname.lastname@example.org.
To join the Occupy Boston Community Forum email list, a general discussion list, click here! For a partial listing of Working Groups looking for volunteers, please click here! For a list of Working Groups with contact info, click here! For more information on Occupy Boston’s General Assembly, including passed resolutions, click here! And if you’re interested in learning more about Occupy Boston and how you can participate, click here! For contact info for other Occupies in the area, click here!
Contact Us: Want to subscribe to the Daily Digest? Click here to have it sent to your email inbox every morning! All Working Groups or Occupy Boston events that need placement in the Daily Digest, please email AnnaC@OccupyBoston.org. To request that something be added to the Occupy Boston calendar, use the form on the website http://www.occupyboston.org/