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Building Liberty | Resistance

Resistance to Repression

Online Supplement to the Book:

Life During Wartime: Resisting Counterinsurgency

Chapter on "Repression, Civil Liberties, Right-Wingers, and Liberals: Resisting Counterinsurgency and Subversion Panics"

Cite: Chip Berlet, 2013, “Repression, Civil Liberties, Right-Wingers, and Liberals: Resisting Counterinsurgency and Subversion Panics.” In Kristian Williams, Will Munger, and Lara Messersmith-Glavin, eds., Life During Wartime: Resisting Counterinsurgency, AK Press.

Endnotes with Live Links

1 Some of the research in this chapter was originally conducted for and used in Chip Berlet
and Matthew N. Lyons, “One Key to Litigating Against Government Prosecution of Dissidents: Understanding the Underlying Assumptions.” In Police Misconduct and Civil Rights Law Report, in two parts, Vol. 5, No. 13, January–February Vol. 5, No. 14, March– April, West Group: 1998. A few sentences are borrowed with permission.

2 Personal correspondence between author and José Palafox. The exchange resulted in the
posting of a public statement: José Palafox, “Grand Juries as a Political Weapon: From José Palafox in California,” http://www.buildingliberty.us/grand-juries/palafox/, May 9, 2012.

3 Andy Grimm, “More anti-war activists subpoenaed, attorney says: Action apparently
part of federal terror-funding inquiry,” Chicago Tribune, http://articles.chicagotribune. com/2010-12-23/news/ct-met-anti-war-subpoenas-20101223_1_grand-jury-anti-war­activists-subpoenas, December 23, 2010; David Schaper, “FBI Targets Peace Activists For Alleged Terrorism Support,” NPR News, http://m.npr.org/news/front/130274688, Oct. 2, 2010.

4 James Baldwin, “An Open Letter to My Sister, Miss Angela Davis,” New York Review of Books, http://www.nybooks.com/articles/archives/1971/jan/07/an-open-letter-to-my­sister-miss-angela-davis/, November 19, 1970.

5 Interview by author with Arthur Kinoy, 1997.

6    Interview by author with Harvey Silverglate, 1997. Conducted for and used in Berlet and
Lyons, “One Key to Litigating Against Government Prosecution of Dissidents.”

7 Chip Berlet, “Inside a Fright-Wing Cell,” Boston Phoenix, August 19, 1988. The author
also attended a dinner featuring one of the defendants, Robert Miles, and heard the case discussed in detail by Miles.

8 Interview by author with Harvey Silverglate.

9 Chip Berlet, “‘Christian Warriors’: Who Are the Hutaree Militia and Where Did They Come From?” Religion Dispatches, http://www.religiondispatches.org/archive/poli­tics/2413, March 31, 2010.

10 Emma Reynolds, “Michigan militia are CLEARED of plotting to overthrow government - despite massive undercover FBI operation,” Mail Online, March 28, 2012, http://www. dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2121490.

11 Ibid.

12 Gary Alan Fine, “The Chaining of Social Problems: Solutions and unintended conse­quences in the age of betrayal,” Social Problems, 53, no. 1 (Feb. 2006), 3–17.

13 Brian Glick, War at Home: Covert Action Against U. S. Activists and What We Can Do About It. (Boston: South End Press: 1989). Glick has authorized the full text of his book to be placed online at http://www.buildingliberty.us/war-at-home/glick_overview.html.

14 Glick, War at Home.

15 Victor Serge, What Everyone Should Know About State Repression, (London: New Park Publications, 1979).

16 On the Iranian SAVAK, see Library of Congress, Iran: A Country Study, http://lcweb2. loc.gov/frd/cs/pdf/CS_Iran.pdf, (2008). On El Salvador secret police operations, see Ross Gelbspan, Break-Ins, Death Threats, and the FBI: The Covert War Against the Central America Movement. (Boston: South End Press, 1991).

17 Leo Huberman, The Labor Spy Racket, (New York: Modern Age Books, 1937); George. J. A. O’Toole, The Private Sector: Private Spies, Rent-A-Cops, and the Police-Industrial Complex, (New York: Norton, 1978). See also Frank Donner, The Age of Surveillance: The aims and methods of America’s political intelligence system (New York: Knopf, 1980); and Protectors of Privilege: Red squads and political repression in urban America (Berkeley: University of California Press,1992).

18 Louis F. Post, The Deportations Delerium of Nineteen-Twenty, (Chicago: Charles H. Kerr, 1923). It would have been nicer if Post had mentioned this assessment while signing the deportation orders for Attorney General Palmer.

19 Allan M. Jalon, “A Break-In to End All Break-Ins,” Los Angeles Times, March 8, 2006, http://articles.latimes.com/2006/mar/08/opinion/oe-jalon8.

20 Ward Churchill and Jim Vander Wall, Agents of Repression: The FBI’s Secret Wars Against the Black Panther Party and the American Indian Movement, (Boston: South End Press, 1988); and The COINTELPRO Papers: Documents from the FBI’s Secret Wars Against Domestic Dissent, (Boston: South End Press, 1989).

21 Jeffrey Haas, The Assassination of Fred Hampton: How the FBI and the Chicago Police Murdered a Black Panther, (Chicago: Chicago Review / Lawrence Hill, 2010).

22 David Schaper, “FBI Targets Peace Activists for Alleged Terrorism Support,” National Public Radio, October 10, 2010, http://www.npr.org/2010/10/02/130274688/


23 Schaper, “FBI Targets Peace Activists For Alleged Terrorism Support.”

24 Grimm, “More anti-war activists subpoenaed.”

25 Grimm, “More anti-war activists subpoenaed.”

26 Interview by author with Fred Solowey, 2011.

27 James Retherford, “Brandon Darby, The Texas 2, and the FBI’s Runaway Informants,” The Rag Blog, May 26, 2009, http://theragblog.blogspot.com/2009/05/james-retherford­brandon-darby-texas-2.html.

28 Victoria Welle, “Brandon Darby in New Orleans: FBI Informant Was Egotistical Sexist,” The Rag Blog, May 26, 2009, http://theragblog.blogspot.com/2009/05/brandon­darby-in-new-orleans-fbi.html; Kristian Williams, “Profiles of Provocateurs,” Portland Indymedia, June 9, 2011, http://portland.indymedia.org/en/2011/06/408869.shtml.

29 Welle, “Brandon Darby in New Orleans”; Williams, “Profiles of Provocateurs.”

30 Huberman, The Labor Spy Racket.

31 Trevor Aaronson, “Terms of Entrapment: A Guide to Counterterrorism Jargon,” Mother Jones, September/October 2011, http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2011/08/coun­terterrorism-glossary.

32 Will Potter, “Mafia Law Used Against Environmentalists for Tree Sits, Civil Disobedience,” Green is the New Red, April 29, 2009, http://www.greenisthenewred.com/blog/mob-law­i-69-environmental-activists/1804/.

33 Frederick Clarkson, “Terror in the Name of the Lord,” Ms Magazine, Winter, 2002, http://www.msmagazine.com/dec02/clarkson.asp; Political Research Associates, “What is the Army of God?” http://www.publiceye.org/reproductive_rights/violence/aog.htm.

34 Xavier Beltran, “Applying RICO to eco-activism: Fanning the Radical Flames of Eco­Terror,” Boston College Environmental Affairs Law Review 29, No. 2 (2002).

35 The author is not an attorney; this text should not be considered competent legal advice. Always consult an attorney on questions of law. Please do not test the limits of repression to prove a political point without first speaking with an attorney about your risks.

36 Brandenburg v. Ohio, 395 U.S. 444 (1969). See resource pages at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law, http://www.oyez.org/cases/1960-1969/1968/1968_492; and Boston
College, http://www.bc.edu/bc_org/avp/cas/comm/free_speech/brandenburg.html.

37 The test is discussed here: Doug Linder, “Advocacy of Unlawful Action and the ‘Incitement Test’: The Issue: When does the First Amendment allow the government to punish in­dividuals for expression that may lead to unlawful conduct?” Exploring Constitutional Conflicts, http://law2.umkc.edu/faculty/projects/ftrials/conlaw/incitement.htm.

38 Linder, “Advocacy of Unlawful Action and the ‘Incitement Test.’”

39 Donner, The Age of Surveillance (1980); Protectors of Privilege (1992). See also: Chip Berlet, “Government Intelligence Abuse: The Theories of Frank Donner,” Political Research Associates, (2008), http://www.buildingliberty.us/repression/#donner

40 “Coalition Letter to Chairman Peter King,” Addressed to “The Honorable Peter T. King, Chairman, House Committee on Homeland Security,” February 23, 2011, http://www. buildingliberty.us/repression/dox/Coalition-Letter_Peter-King.pdf.

41 Chip Berlet, [1987] 1993, Hunt for Red Menace: How Government Intelligence Agencies and Private Right-wing Countersubversion Groups Forge Ad Hoc Covert Spy Networks that Target Dissidents as Outlaws, monograph, Somerville, MA: Political Research Associates, http://www.buildingliberty.us/repression/#hunt.

42 Personal observation; the author helped organize the Chicago event. Personal collection of flyers and programs for the event.

43 Interview by author with Debra Chaplan, 2011.

44 Chip Berlet, “Chairman Lieberman’s ‘War on Terror,’” Right Web, September 16, 2008, http://www.rightweb.irc-online.org/articles/display/Chairman_Liebermans_War_on_ Terror.

45 Chip Berlet, “Violence and Public Policy,” Criminology and Public Policy, special issue on terrorism, Vol. 8, Issue 3, (October, 2009): 623–31.

46 Muslim American Civil Liberties Coalition (MACLC), “Counterterrorism policy: MACLC’s Critique of the NYPD’s Report on Homegrown Radicalism,” MACLC website, http://maclcnypdcritique.files.wordpress.com/2008/11/counterterrorism-policy-final­paper3.pdf.

47 Tim Murphy, “Meet the White Supremacist Leading the GOP’s Anti-Sharia Crusade,” Mother Jones, March 1, 2011, http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2011/02/david­yerushalmi-sharia-ban-tennessee; Salim Muwakkil, “The Muslims Are Coming!” In These Times, April 7, 2011, http://www.inthesetimes.com/article/7156/; Tanya Somanader, “Asked About AZ Shootings, Gingrich Pivots To Slamming Liberals For Ignoring Threat Of ‘American Islamists’,” January 11, 2012, http://thinkprogress. org/politics/2011/01/11/138222/gingrich-islamophobia-az-shooting; Chip Berlet, “Islamophobia, Antisemitism and the Demonized ‘Other’,”Extra!, Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting (FAIR), August 14, 2012, http://fair.org/extra-online-articles/islamopho­bia-antisemitism-and-the-demonized-other/.

48 Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting (FAIR), “Smearcasting,” 2008, http://www.smearcast­ing.us/.

49 Thomas Cincotta, Manufacturing the Muslim Menace: Private Firms, Public Servants, & the Threat to Rights and Security, Political Research Associates, (2011), http://www.build­ingliberty.us/repression/#muslim.

50 Interview by author with Thomas Cincotta, 2012.

51 Berlet, Hunt for Red Menace. See a special page devoted to the escapades of Rees and his network, http://www.buildingliberty.us/repression/informers/rees-escapades.html.

52 Richard Drinnon, Facing West: The Metaphysics of Indian-Hating and Empire-Building. (New York: Schocken Books, 1990).

53 Andrea Smith, Conquest: Sexual Violence and American Indian Genocide, (Cambridge: South End Press, 2005).

54 Gary Alan Fine, “The Chaining of Social Problems: Solutions and Unintended Consequences in the Age of Betrayal,” Social Problems, Vol. 53, 1, 3–17.

55 Robert Justin Goldstein, Political Repression in Modern America, From 1870 to Present, (Cambridge, Schenkman, 1978).
56 Frank Donner, “The Terrorist as Scapegoat,” The Nation, 20, May 2 (1978), 590–94; Donner, The Age of Surveillance (1980); Berlet, The Hunt for Red Menace (1993).

57 Donner, “The Terrorist as Scapegoat.” The “Secret Army Organization” in the United States should not be confused with the French nationalist “Secret Army Organization,” also known as the “Organization of the Secret Army,” which in French is “Organisation de l’Armée Secrete” or “Organisation Armée Secrète” (OAS).

58 David Cunningham, There’s Something Happening Here: The New Left, the Klan, and FBI Counterintelligence, Berkeley: University of California Press, (2004), 32, 111–12.

59 Cunningham, There’s Something Happening Here, 145.

60 Ross Gelbspan, Break-Ins, Death Threats, and the FBI: The Covert War Against the Central America Movement, (Boston: South End Press, 1991).

61 Wojtek Sokolowski, “The State,” Left Business Observer Listserv, (LBO-Talk Archives), September 25, 2009, http://mailman.lbo-talk.org/2009/2009-September/013295.html.

62 William W. Keller, The Liberals and j Edgar Hoover, (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1989).

63 Chip Berlet and Matthew N. Lyons, “Repression and Ideology,” (1998), http://www. buildingliberty.us/repression/#ideology.

64 See Donner, The Age of Surveillance, 414–51; Gelbspan, Break-Ins, Death Threats, and the FBI, 73–84, 169–73, 183 –95; Berlet, [1987] 1993.

65 Berlet and Lyons, 1998.

66 William I. Thomas and Dorothy Swaine Thomas, “Situations defined as real are real in their consequences” (1970): 154–55, in Gregory P. Stone and Harvey A. Faberman, Social Psychology Through Symbolic Interaction, (Waltham: Xerox College Publishing, 1970).

67 Vijendra Singh Jafa, “Counterinsurgency Warfare: The Use & Abuse of Military Force,” South Asia Intelligence Review, http://www.satp.org/satporgtp/publication/faultlines/vol­ume3/Fault3-JafaF.htm.

68 Personal correspondence between author and Kristian Williams, 2012.

69 Singh Jafa, “Counterinsurgency Warfare: The Use & Abuse of Military Force.”

70 Ibid.

71 William S. Lind, “Understanding Fourth Generation War,” Lew Rockwell website, January 6, 2004, http://www.lewrockwell.com/lind/lind3b.html. The website is a clear­inghouse for White Nationalist Paleocons. Note that LewRockwell.com has a slogan “an­ti-state, anti-war, pro-market.” For a principled anti-racist critique by a conservative eco­nomic libertarian, see Tom Palmer, “From Lew Rockwell to Racist Collectivism,” March 2, 2005, http://tomgpalmer.com/2005/03/02/from-lew-rockwell-to-racist-collectivism/.

72 Chip Berlet, “Breivik’s Core Thesis is White Christian Nationalism v. Multiculturalism,” Talk to Action, (2011), http://www.talk2action.org/story/2011/7/25/73510/6015.

73 Glick, War at Home; Chip Berlet, “Encountering and Countering Political Repression” in The Global Activists Manual, eds., Mike Prokosch and Laura Raymond, (New York: Thunder’s Mouth Press/Nation Books, 2002), http://www.buildingliberty.us/security/countering_re­pression.html; See also Sheila O’Donnell, “Common Sense Security,” Public Eye Network, (2012), http://www.buildingliberty.us/security/common-sense-security.html.

74 Sheila O’Donnell “Common Sense Security.”

75 New York City Chapter of the National Lawyers Guild, “You Have the Right to Remain Silent: A Know Your Rights Guide for Law Enforcement Encounters,” NLGNYC web-site, http://www.nlgnyc.org/pdf/publications/kyr-righttoremainsilent.pdf.

76 George Seldes and Clarice A. Rosenthal, You Can’t Do That: a survey of the forces attempting, in the name of patriotism, to make a desert of the Bill of Rights, (New York: Modern Age Books, 1938).

77 “Freedom is a Constant Struggle,” lyrics to the song as used in the play, “McComb, U.S.A.,” written by students of the McComb, Mississippi, Freedom School in 1964, and archived by the Department of Curriculum & Instruction at the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana, http://courses.education.illinois.edu/ci407ss/freedomconstant­struggle.html.


Also on this website:

Security for Activists Collection

Common Sense Security
By Sheila O'Donnell

Encountering and Countering Political Repression
By Chip Berlet

Disruption: Warning Signs
Sexism, egos, and lies:
Sometimes you wake up and it is not different

By Lisa Fithian / The Rag Blog / March 22, 2010


Stop Spying US

An online collection of survellance documents from various government agencies.

No More With Hunts: A National Campaign in 1981