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US press attacks Freedom Socialists for support to Iraqi resistance and Anti-imperialist Camp

29. December 2005

Solidarity declaration by the Anti-imperialist Camp and statement by Freedom Socialist Party in response to New York Post article: “Harlem Radicals Probed”Solidarity with to brave US Freedom Socialists

The US Freedom Socialists are one of the few remaining forces in the US itself that have the courage to insist on the consequent defence of the elementary democratic rights which are being rapidly eroded by the US terror war.

The right to national self-determination is the most basic principle of democracy. The war on and the subsequent occupation of Iraq is a clear violation of this right. Therefore the resistance (including the armed one) to the US occupation troops in Iraq is not only legitimate but must be supported by all true democrats. Furthermore this is being backed by the charter of the United Nations.

Sectarian violence in Iraq has nothing to do with the popular resistance and helps in the final run only the occupiers. All the major resistance forces condemn them and often blame the occupiers and their allies of having perpetrated acts of terror against civilians in order to foster the political split between the confessional communities. This does in no way alter the legitimacy of the resistance of an entire people striving for self-determination.

Actually 90% of the world’s population regards the US and its allies, first of all Israel, as the main terrorists while those being termed terrorists are freedom fighters. Actually all the anti-colonial and anti-imperial struggles against the British and French, against Nazi Germany and after WWII against the US have been smeared as terrorists. Only the totalitarian control of the media apparatuses can turn reality up side down – but not for ever.

Thus it is only logic that the permanent and pre-emptive US war against any opposition is not only directed against all freedom-loving people of the world but also against the democratic rights within the US and its allies. The amendments to the US constitution — which once provided at least some elements to cover up the worshipping of a presidential dictatorship – have been de facto abolished. Guantanamo is only the tip of an iceberg. Every day new aspects of the war on democracy are being revealed. In the US there is no more political freedom of expression for real opposition forces.

It is not by accident that the positions of the Anti-imperialist Camp are de facto illegal in the US. Our website remains shut down for “terror support” and the “Homeland Security” keeps investigating against us.

All the more the democratic and anti-imperialist forces must help, defend and support those few forces within which resist the imperial war and dictatorship. The Freedom Socialists are one of its vanguard forces openly calling for the support of the resistance of the Iraqi people. They also lent solidarity to the Anti-imperialist Camp when it was criminalized in the US.

Stop the state-orchestrated campaign against the Freedom Socialists!
Freedom of expression must be re-conquered in the US!
Stop the US’ imperial drive abroad and the dictatorial drive at home!

Anti-imperialist Camp
December 31, 2005

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Statement by Freedom Socialist Party in response to New York Post article: “Harlem Radicals Probed”

On December 26, the New York Post writer Niles Lathem added his two-bit contribution to the smear campaign against those who oppose the U.S. military occupation of Iraq by claiming that the Freedom Socialist Party (FSP) is the subject of investigation because of its support of the Iraqi resistance. In his article, “Harlem Radicals Probed,” Lathem implies that because the FSP supports the Iraqis’ legitimate right to resist the occupation of their country, the organization is itself an uncritical supporter of terrorism, including violence against civilians. This is not true. And the sole purpose of such an allegation by Lathem along with his unsubstantiated charge that the FSP is being investigated by federal authorities is to have a chilling effect on the growing U.S. and global opposition to the Iraq war and occupation.

Lathem’s lambasting is based on the FSP’s supporting the right of the European-based Anti-Imperialist Camp to raise funds and meet with other activists peacefully in Italy at a conference called “Leave Iraq in Peace–Support the Legitimate Resistance of the Iraqi People.” Pro-war Congressional members intervened to pressure the Italian government to deny visas to Iraqi civilians, all holding legitimate passports, who planned to attend. Washington, D.C.’s political bullying tactics were met with international defiance, including a petition signed by 41 members of Italy’s parliament protesting the subordination of Italian sovereignty to U.S. dictates.

Leading the assault on freedom of speech and association is Rep. Sue Kelly (R-NY) who continues to use her position with the House Armed Services Subcommittee on Terrorism, Unconventional Threats and Capabilities to slander and criminalize those in the U.S and around the world who support Iraqis resisting the U.S. occupation. At a hearing on August 2, she executed the McCarthy-type ploy of holding up a poster depicting a U.S. soldier being shot in front of an Iraqi flag. She claimed it was part of the Anti-Imperialist Camp’s fundraising efforts, an accusation which a camp’s spokesperson later exposed as “freely invented.”

The FSP is not alone in opposing the occupation. The party joins millions of
people around the world who acknowledge the right of the Iraqi people to resist the U.S. invasion and occupation. They say they would do the same if their country was attacked. “Aren’t we here today as the United States because citizens took up arms to defend themselves against the ravages of British colonialism over two hundred years ago?” says Stephen Durham, FSP New York City organizer.

Those who try to defend the U.S. military occupation under the rubric of a “war on terrorism” use the violent and indiscriminate tactics of a minority within the broad Iraqi resistance to vilify and invalidate the entire opposition. But in Iraq, trade unionists, feminists, doctors, scholars, citizens who oppose privatization of Iraq’s natural resources, those who believe no real democracy can exist until the occupation ends–all are active participants in the resistance. The Iraqis, as a people, have the right to determine their struggle as a nation against U.S. military occupation and economic and political coercion.

The U.S.-led military assault has meant the death of thousands of Iraqis, the destruction of infrastructure, and instituting the theft of natural resources, namely Iraq’s rich oil reserves, by U.S. corporations. The FSP supports the right of Iraqis to defend themselves against the violence and destruction of the military occupation. The FSP, in addition, calls on the U.S. antiwar movement do the same as the most effective way to resist government intimidation, strengthen the movement, and bring the bloody U.S. occupation of Iraq to an end.

The Post’s journalistic assault on the FSP was not the only attempt to intimidate dissent in recent days. The past week’s news has been replete with videotapes of NYPD undercover infiltration and provocation during local protests, the Bush administration’s illegal and unauthorized tapping of phone conversations, and, of course, the draconian threats and penalties imposed on transit union members.

In the 50s, the atmosphere of hysteria whipped up against socialists and communists permitted the McCarthyites to ride roughshod over the civil liberties of everyone. The result was more than a decade of political reaction, and two wars: Korea and Vietnam. We cannot let that happen again.

Stop the witchhunts against antiwar activists!
 
End U.S. military terror in Iraq! Bring the troops home now!
 
For the right to national self-determination!
 
Defend First Amendment rights and freedom of expression everywhere!

December 27, 2005

Issued by :
Freedom Socialist Party
Freedom Hall
113 West 128 Street
New York, NY 10027
212-222-0633
212-222-0839 (fax)
www.socialism.com

***

New York Post article
Monday, December 26, 2005

Harlem radicals probed

By NILES LATHEM Post Correspondent

WASHINGTON – A small left-wing group operating out of a storefront in Harlem has drawn scrutiny from international terrorism investigators for joining in a global fund-raising drive for the “armed resistance” in Iraq, The Post has learned.

The Manhattan-based Freedom Socialist Party is one of two American groups whose name is part of the Europeanbased consortium of radical organizations known as the Anti-Imperialist Camp, which is openly raising money for antiU.S. groups in Iraq, according to literature from the organization.

“Everybody’s got the right to exercise free speech. But people who actively support and send money to terrorists who are targeting American soldiers are crossing the line and ought to be dealt with,” said Rep. Sue Kelly (R-N.Y.), whose House Armed Services subcommittee on Terrorism and Unconventional Threats has investigated the group.

Stephen Durham, a former candidate for the New York State Assembly and spokesman for the Freedom Socialist Party, denied that his group is violating any U.S. laws.

But Durham said that he is in “solidarity with the Iraqi resistance politically,” and added that he cannot condemn the brutal tactics, including hostage beheadings and carbomb attacks, employed by terrorists like Abu Musab al-Zarqawi.

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