portland independent media center  
images audio video
newswire article

human & civil rights | imperialism & war | political theory

Anarchists Protest the Persecution Of RaisetheFist.com Webmaster

January 24 marks the one year anniversary of the Federal raid on the founder of the founder of raisethefist.com. A group of anarchists protested in front of the federal building in Los Angeles.
Anarchists Protest the Persecution Of RaisetheFist.com Webmaster
Anarchists Protest the Persecution Of RaisetheFist.com Webmaster
This Friday, on the one year anniversary of the raid on raisethefist.com founder, Sherman Austin's home, a small group of anarchists protested in front of the federal building in Westwood. They were joined by peace activists protesting the upcoming war on Iraq.

The January 24, 2002 raid marked one of the first USA Patriot Act injustices on an american citizen. On that day, agents of the FBI, Secret Service, and personnel from the lapd and sherriffs dept raided his home and confiscated all of his computer equipment and much of his literature as well. Their excuse was that bomb making instructions were posted on the site. A case of selective prosecution? Perhaps, since the same information is posted on many other sites who's webmasters have their first ammendment rights respected (for the time being) and remain unmolested by the authorities.

In fact, Austin was targeted because he was an anarchist and his website was gaining popularity and appeal as rtf chapters started forming independently of Austin's immediate circle of friends. RTF also has been and remains a viable anarchist web presence that challenges the authority of the state, capitalism, and the rampant oppression by the police in our communities. The website is closely monitored not only by american law enforcement agencies, but government and intelligence agencies around the globe.

Austin felt that he was forced to accept a plea bargain or face being railroaded into jail for serious time. The terms included one month in jail. After accepting the plea bargain, Judge Wilson threw the plea bargain out and is insisting that Austin be made to serve more than a year in jail. Only six to twelve months is typical for someone with Austin's record. But then again, Sherman Austin is an anarchist.

Austin is set to go to trial in March of 2003. LA indymedia is planning to set up a feature page investigating his situation and will follow this case closely and report the relevent developements.


 http://www.raisethefist.com

 http://www.raisethefist.com/news.cgi?artical=wire/-----848123t4a.article

 http://www.raisethefist.com/news.cgi?artical=wire/-----9916453t4a.article

a little common sense 25.Jan.2003 11:07

redworker

this is why it is stupid to put bomb making instructions on your web site. it leaves you open to attack, for very little actual political return.

the "revolutionary" left is so very stupid about this. I can't count the times I've seen pictures of bombings, rioting, and other such acts promently displayed on the front page of "radical" publications.

the IWW learned back in the teens (1915ish) that when in court defending your self against direct action, referances to property destruction in your organizations litature didn't help ones case. it undermines it.

that said, it is clearly true that the states assualt on free speach and democratic must be resisted and publisized.
lets be a little smarter in the futur, by learning from mistakes.

A Little More Common Sense 26.Jan.2003 06:23

charles amsellem

This is a simple issue of an anarchist's basic rights being violated. This is a simple issue of an anarchist who's political action was and continues to gain momentum being silenced by state terror. Merely posting instructions is not a crime. It is protected free speech. The flimsy nature of the charges demonstrates that they were desperate to bring him down any way they could. If there is any criticism neccessary about the 'revolutionary left' it is that they fail to act with sufficient solidarity to bring light to these issues. There should be a national outcry when these injustices occur. There should be wholehearted support for brave men like Austin; not criticism about controversial expressions that are completely protected and sacred.
A Little More Common Sense
A Little More Common Sense

cartoon wasnt posting 26.Jan.2003 06:36

charlesf

here is is again..i hope