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UPDATE: Moss's grand jury hearing was postponed until January. Apparently the other activists who also received subpoenas to testify at the grand jury had their dates delayed until January, and so Moss's date was also postponed until then. The exact date has not yet been made public.
Forest activists from Portland and Eugene have been receiving subpoenas to appear in front of a grand jury. Included in the list of activists is Mary "Moss" Fanelli, who had been very active in the Eagle Creek campaign in past years. Wednesday she will appear before this archaic and outdated jury.
It is unclear what the (not so) grand jury currently issuing subpoenas is investigating at this time, but this one seems different from others seen in the Northwest in recent years. Whereas other grand juries have almost exclusively summoned spokespeople for groups like the Earth Liberation Front, this one is summoning numerous forest activists from the community who've focused their activism on public, nonviolent civil disobedience actions. Their agenda appears to be to coerce and intimidate people engaged in public dissent, rather than investigate any particular 'criminal' activity.
Since receiving her subpoena, Moss has been followed at times, and apparently has had her mail read. With all such shady activites, it is hard to ascertain the extent of the surveillance. Moss will be appearing before the grand jury in Eugene on Wednesday morning. There is a rally in support of Moss at 9am in front of the Federal Courthouse in Eugene with rides leaving from Portland early that morning, and a solidarity rally in Portland in front of the Federal Courthouse (1000 SW 3rd Ave.) at noon on the same day.
Monday night approximately 175 Portland citizens attended a community panel and briefing on the USA PATRIOT Act at the Central Lutheran Church. The USA PATRIOT Act (an acronym for the Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism), a statute that was quickly passed by Congress and signed on October 26th by President George Bush, severely threatens constitutional protections, especially for immigrants, and the expanded definition of "domestic terrorism" poses a particular peril to activists everywhere.
Following the speakers was a panel represented by local activists, including Kathleen Jergens, who spoke candidly about the Police Joint Terrorism Task Force and Civilians against Police Spying, Craig Rosebraugh, a former spokesperson for Earth Liberation Front and currently under subpoena to the House Grand Jury, and attorney Stu Sugarman, who spoke specifically about grand juries, their objectives to co-erce and intimidate, and the details of the process.
This Saturday (the 17th) is a panel and workshops on war, US foreign policy, domestic issues, and activist education at the First Unitarian Church (SW Salmon and 12th) from 1 to 6pm.full story | photos
[ Patriot bill becomes law | Craig Rosebraugh congressional subcommittee summons | Moss' grand jury summation | FBI and slip-ups | Three DOJ documents:Wiretapping, searches, computer seizures | details on Carnivore | web proxie services | COINTELPRO ]
Eugene: Protesters clash with cops
Portland: Peace Vigil with Anti-WTO Protest
Logging has begun right around the tree-sit in Area IV of the Acey Line timber sale in Gods Valley and the Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) has decided that it does not want Portland or the rest of the State of Oregon to know that they are endangering the lives of tree-sitters---AGAIN!
Cascadia Forest Alliance (CFA) is in contact with the sitters and they are reporting that trees are falling as close as 20 feet from the tree-sit. This is contrary to ODF's stated plan of leaving a buffer zone of 2 tree lengths and shows yet again that what ODF says and does can be very different.
Meanwhile, ODF has refused media access requests from Indymedia, KBOO and the Alliance and has given access to one hand picked local newspaper editor, which in effect is an imposed media blackout in Portland and the rest of Oregon.
With the help of Indymedia, Greenpeace intends to put at least 1 hour of English programming a day on the web during the WTO Ministerial in Qatar. Arabic programming is also being planned. These programs will be broadcast from the Greenpeace ship Rainbow Warrior, as it is docked in Doha, Qatar.
This is the only independent broadcast platform covering the WTO conference, which is quite possibly a defining meeting between the West, the developing world and Islam. The anti-globalisation movement has never had a voice in the area, so this is an important opportunity to build up relations with the Arab world. Indymedia really does go where no other news agency will go and thus brings a voice to the unheard, the dispossessed and from all corners of the planet. Full story
Is there a connection between the WTO and the Al Queda? Read more, from the Newswire
On Monday, November 12th PSU Students for Unity and the Associated Students of PSU will be presenting "Faces of the New World" as an opportunity to explore answers to how the international trade policies being negotiated thousands of miles away in Qatar will affect our own communities. "Education, discussion, debrief, and FILMS!!!" Details
World-Wide WTO Actions on Nov. 9
Two prisoners at the Federal Prison Camp in Sheridan, Oregon, Eric Robison and Josh Raisler Cohn, have declared an 18 day hunger strike to protest the continued existence of the School of the Americas (SOA). Robison (21, from Spokane, Washington) and Raisler Cohn (24, from Portland , Oregon) have been imprisoned on six month maximum sentences along with 19 others for trespassing at Ft. Benning, Georgia, the home of the controversial combat training school.
Several of their co-defendants will also be participating in the 18 day juice and water fast in various locations around the country. The fast will continue until November 18, the day thousands of citizens will gather at Ft. Benning to take part in a vigil and civil disobedience calling for the permanent closure of the SOA.
"This combat training school is a School of Assassins for Latin American soldiers, and we will continue to work -- even from prison -- until it is closed forever," said Robison.
Thousands are expected to participate in the vigil at Ft. Benning on November 18, 2001. The vigil commemorates the anniversary of the murders of six Jesuits, their coworker and her daughter by SOA graduates in El Salvador in 1989. Atlanta Indymedia will be providing coverage of these actions, and is inviting people attending to report for their website.
According to Citizens for Sensible Transportation, plans are now under way to add four more lanes across the Columbia River to serve Vancouver residents who commute to Portland. The little-publicized I-5 Transportation and Trade Partnership is moving to take the first steps toward increasing auto traffic throughout the region. If these plans go through, they will create tremendous pressure for new sprawling development throughout the region.
Citizens will have the opportunity to make their views on this project known at the I-5 open house Wednesday, November 7 at the Kaiser Town Hall in Portland, and November 8 at Hudson's Bay High School Commons in Vancouver.
Local forest activist subpoenaed
Recently, forest activists from Portland and Eugene have been receiving subpoenas to appear in front of a Grand Jury in Eugene in mid-November. Included in the list of activists is Mary "Moss" Fanelli, who had been very active in the Eagle Creek campaign in past years. It is unclear what the Grand Jury currently issuing subpoenas is investigating at this time, but this one seems different from others seen in the Northwest in recent years. Whereas other grand juries have almost exclusively summoned spokespeople for groups like the Earth Liberation Front, this one is reportedly summoning numerous forest activists from the community who've focused their activism on public, nonviolent civil disobedience actions as opposed to covert sabotage and arson. full story
Help support Moss at the Grand Jury | Anti-terrorism forum Part of the forum will also be focused on grand juries in addition to focusing on the new 'anti-terrorism' legislation. | Cascadia Forest Alliance | forest activism
Green Party member alleges denial of travel
During a Counter Punch interview, Nancy Oden, a Green Party USA coordinating committee member from northern Maine, states she was grabbed by armed government agents as she attempted to board an American Airlines flight to Chicago. Military personnel with automatic weapons surrounded Oden and instructed all airlines to deny her passage on ANY flight. "I was told that the airport was closed to me until further notice and that my ticket would not be refunded," Oden said. full story | Counter Punch interview
However others offer a different account of what transpired at the airport. The Green Party of the United States is trying to find the truth behind this incident as other members were able to travel. "USGP advisory on detention of a Green at Maine airport" Green Party USA and Green Party of the United States are separate organizations.
Craig Rosebraugh ordered to testify
Craig Rosebraugh, a spokesperson for the North American Earth Liberation Front (E.L.F.) from 1997-2001, received a subpoena in the evening of Oct. 31, to testify at a Congressional Subcommittee meeting on Ecoterrorism. The subpoena, delivered by two U.S. Marshals, demands Rosebraugh to appear before the Congressional Subcommittee on Forests and Forest Health at 3:00pm on February 12, 2002 in Washington, DC.
Craig Rosebraugh: "In light of the events on September 11, my country has told me that I should not cooperate with terrorists. I therefore am refusing to cooperate with members of Congress who are some of the most extreme terrorists in history..... " full story
FBI subpoenas woman in black
After S11 the FBI attempted to question Kate Rafael, a member of the Women in Black, an international network of women committed to racial justice and peace. Rafael refused questioning, seeing that as an attack on her first ammendment rights. When asked by Kate's lawyer, the FBI refused to tell about the scope and nature of the investigation. This is an interview from Flashpoints Radio.
full radio report
contact Women in Black, San Fransisco | National lawyers Guild 415.285.1055 (24 hours) | Flashpoints Radio
Along with Kate Rafael's there is a full interview with Dr. Arrod Kareem who was questioned on his political beliefs in an FBI interview and an explanation of the choice for the new cabinet of Homeland Security: the new 'Terrorism Czar' Pennsylvania's Governor Tom Ridge. full radio report
3 November - Salem: "No such thing as a holy war"
2 November - Eugene: "Begging for an end to the madness"
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) contacted volunteers from San Francisco Indymedia on Friday. Agent Chuck Esposito, from the Oakland FBI office, telephoned "Espe", a volunteer who has worked with the SF Indymedia collective. Esposito indicated that the FBI is interested in reviewing Indymedia server logs. While an alleged criminal act is the stated reason for the inquiry, activists feel it is not beyond the pale to suspect that this contact is meant to intimidate individuals and organizations involved in legal political activity whose views are not popular with the government in the current climate of war-time repression. While this particular event might not seem like a big deal to some, it is merely the tip of the iceberg, if history is any judge. This is just what we are seeing now; inevitably, much more investigation and behind-the-scenes shenanigans are going on.
Indymedia does not record IP addresses of website visitors, so the FBI will have to use Constitutionally-questionable spying devices such as Carnivore in their attempt to hunt down this type of information. Fortunately, hacktivists are providing "anonymous web proxies" that allow web surfers to avoid such intrusions into their privacy.
Indymedia volunteers have contacted the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), which helped Indymedia when Seattle Indymedia was served with an order by the FBI in April. According to information obtained by an EFF representative, Agent Esposito was instructed to follow up on a lead they had received involving some kind of "anthrax threat" that allegedly appeared on Arizona Indymedia.
Note that the FBI claim about the type of content posted on Indymedia during the April case was later shown to be false. The FBI dropped that case in June, putting the current score at: Media Activists 1, FBI Spies 0.
Many city workers organized under the District Council of Trade Unions (DCTU) are not only dissatisfied with their new contract but also angry at the union Business Agents who caved in to the City last week and who will not have to live with the new contract themselves. The deal, in all important aspects the same as the one rejected by the membership last month by a 3 to 1 ratio, was accepted by negotiators at the last minute while rank and file members on the Bargaining Team were kept from the table. The main point of contention is over health care.
Contrary to the portrayal of Yvonne Martinez as an uncompromising hard-liner in the Willamette Week, her actions were widely regarded as unethical and a sell-out among the Union membership.
On Monday, October 29, the Executive Board of AFSCME Local 189 voted to recommend that its membership vote "No" on this new tentative agreement. The voting will take place on November 8 and 9. If the DCTU membership does reject this offer, then the union will probably have to strike in order to get Mayor Katz and the City Council to negotiate a better contract. Sources say the members are ready to do just that. The DCTU bargaining team and Union bureaucrats may have lost their nerve, but it appears that the members have not.
Ten Social service workers from Streetlight Youth Shelter and Porchlight Crisis Shelter were on the verge of being arrested at the wishes of their employers when bargaining turned sour this afternoon. The workers, represented by Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) Industrial Union Local 650, made considerable compromises in bargaining to assure that no one would make less than $9.00 an hour at the facilities, but this was unacceptable to JANUS. Workers then refused to leave the building until an agreement could be reached and occupied the office for two hours, during which about a dozen IWW members and sympathizers arrived in support.
Civilians injured by last weekend's US bombing raids have been crossing into neighboring Pakistan for medical treatment. Numerous civilian deaths have been reported inside Afghanistan since the beginning of the US air campaign by reporters inside the country and refugees fleeing into Pakistan. On Wednesday, the 31st of October, predawn US strikes destroy a Red Crescent dispensary in Kandahar, allegedly killing ten.
sources: The Daily Star News (Lebanon) | The Afghan Daily | myafghan.com | Red Crescent
There is a growing unease in the US and abroad over the war. In Oregon there will be a March For Peace on Saturday, November 3 in Salem. A peace rally will be held in Vancouver, Washington, on Sunday, November 4th. In Portland's Pioneer Courthouse Square Women in Black meet every Wednesday at 1 pm to stand in an ongoing protest of war. The Portland Peaceful Response Coalition has also organized ongoing vigils at Pioneer Courthouse Square, the first to held this Friday, November 2, from 5-6 pm and continue at the same time and place thereafter.
US military admits that no mistake caused relief agency warehouse destruction: U.S. military official
MSNBC reports that the US military has admitted to targeting and completely destroying a Kabul Red Cross compound in two raids. The first raid, staged on the 16th of October, partially damaged the compound while the second, carried out the 26th of October, saw its complete destruction. The warehouses within the compound contained foodstuffs and other humanitarian supplies needed by starving Afghanis in order to survive the harsh winter that will soon fall on this impoverished and draught-stricken country. Within several weeks the first snows are due to arrive.
The US admission runs contrary to the official statement given earlier that blamed "human error" for the targeting of the warehouses.
"BOMBING RED CROSS ON PURPOSE" | full MSNBC story -scroll down | "Red Cross Stunned by Bombing" | International Red Cross | UNHCR (United Nations High Commision for Refugees)
Twenty six animal rights activists were arrested and dozens more brutalized by police during a protest against Stephens, Inc., in Little Rock, Arkansas, USA, on Monday, October 29. The demonstration followed a weekend of actions intended to highlight the cruel treatment of animals by UK-based Huntingdon Life Services (HLS), and to force Stephens to withdraw its financial support from the laboratory company. HLS kills 500 animals a day, mostly for testing household products and cosmetics, and not for the "medical" purposes that their public relations firm claims.
Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty (SHAC) organized the events. People began arriving on Friday. Organizers met with police, who said their presence would be "minimal" if protesters did not "break the law" or become violent. Laws regarding public assembly and speech in Little Rock had recently changed, however, at the behest of Stephens, which pressured the Little Rock City Council into adopting a new ordinance regarding public assembly and speech. The result, brutal attacks by police on protesters, seems the intended result of the promulgation, and reflects a broader -- indeed global -- pattern of individual liberties being sacrificed to serve corporate interests.
Saturday started with a town meeting featuring speakers from activist, medical and academic backgrounds meant to "bring activists and the City of Little Rock together in mutual understanding". The meeting was followed by workshops on undercover investigation of labs, direct action, and constitutional rights. On Sunday, people gathered for a vegan barbecue and then embarked on a Parade of Homes; about 170 activists marched through the manicured residential streets where Stephens executives live to take their anti-HLS message directly to the decision-makers. Police followed the parade with a helicopter and horses, but caused little trouble.
Monday's demonstration at the Stephens headquarters in downtown Little Rock drew 200 activists with signs and puppets and 100 police in full riot gear with guns and gas masks. A protest pen surrounded by metal barricades had been set up for the demonstrators, but they quickly decided not to use it and took the streets instead. After a short march, activists lined up at the barricades, across from the police, and chanted positive animal advocacy statments. At some point an activist evidently tripped over one of the barricades, which brought down others with it. The activists stepped back, but the police charged, and the brutality began. Police pepper sprayed those trying to get away, set off a compression grenade and sent tear gas pouring through the crowd. At least two activists were shot in the face with rubber bullets at very close range. [ Monday, 1 | Monday, 2 ]
Despite this treatment, the activists took to the streets for a second march. They ended up behind Stephens, where they lined up in the street. This is when the arrests began in earnest. Police ripped masks off activists' faces and applied pepper spray from only inches away. Everyone was pushed around and abused, including the Indymedia journalist on the scene, despite her press pass. [ Monday, 3 ]
Stories of abuse in the jail began trickling in that night; police punched in the face one of the activists who had been shot in the face earlier. Those arrested may need help with bond money. A newswire story reports that in arraignments for those arrested yesterday in Little Rock, the judge ordered the activists to pay restitution, which implies guilt. In other words, the judge found them guilty without due process which is a fundamental violation of the constitution. A website has been set up to support the 26 arrestees. In related news, the North American Animal Liberation Front has taken credit for a strike against the Bank of America, Stephens' parent company, in Long Island.
Local Solidarity Action
Background: [ Portland Indymedia: The issues and the players | City of Little Rock: Anti-free speech ordinance | SHAC: October 29 website & VIDEO | In depth: "Vivisection or Science: a choice to make" ]
Despite popular opposition, public outcry, and civil disobedience, logging has resumed in Tillamook State Forest in the area known as God's Valley. The cutting is occuring in Area 4 of the Acey Line timber sale, where the Cascadia Forest Alliance (CFA) and Hard Rain Alliance have set up two treesits. CFA held a non-violence and videography training last thursday to teach people how to be effective in protests and be prepared to face the level of police violence encountered at the last action.
The situation at the timber sale has been heated lately; loggers and the Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) attacked an activist (see feature, below), 3 people were arrested while documenting it, and 16 people protesting the attack were arrested in a civil disobedience action on October 6.
Sunday, CFA carried out a re-supply of the area 4 tree-sits. 60 people gathered to cross the line and bring supplies to the sitters who had been cutoff behind a closure. ODF, and the police, tacitly admitting how far over the line they crossed last time, were not there at all.
While much of the Western World has been obsessed with war and peace, activists in Ontario have been bringing the agenda back to what they percieve as the root cause of injustice, poverty, and violence in the world: Globalized Capitalism. From Toronto, to Hamilton, and Sudbury, and several places in between, the Ontario Coalition Against Poverty (OCAP) and the Ontario Common Front (OCF) have been holding actions intending to slow down or stop economic activity in city centers. On October 16, the financial district of Toronto was effectively shut down for several hours by 2000 protesters, despite the presence of 1500 riot cops.
The people at these actions -- who have included labor unions, anarchists, high school students, and others -- take issue with the conservative politics of the Tory-controlled provincial government. This current wave or resistance has not yet crested; more protests and rallies are still planned.
Coincidentally, the World Bank and International Monetary Fund meetings initially scheduled for Sept. 29 in Washington, DC, but cancelled in the wake of the attacks on the East Coast, will now take place in Ottawa, from November 16-18. These institutions, which stand at the center of globalized capitalism, will likely face great protest that will be magnified by the energy currently building across the province.
On Tuesday, Tre Arrow held a press conference to discuss logging operations in the Tillamook State Forest and the injuries he suffered when he was attacked there earlier this month. Both ODF employees and loggers have been subjecting activists to extreme harrassment, going so far as to cut all the branches from a tree in which Tre had perched. After 45 hours in the tree, Tre fell from a height of 70-90 feet, and sustained serious injuries. Though wheelchair-bound for the time being, Arrow expressed confidence that he would heal soon, and pledged to continue the fight to save the trees. "I'll be right there on the front lines again," he said. This was his first public appearance after being released from the hospital.
PCUN (Pineros y Campesinos Unidos del Noroeste - "United Treeplanters and Farmworkers of the Northwest"), Oregon's farmworker union, has declared two more victories in its continuing struggle to gain recognition for workers at the Pictsweet Mushrooms plant in Salem and at NORPAC farms throughout the Willamette Valley.
Sodexho & NORPAC
PCUN believes that student activism played a large part in Sodexho's decision and PCUN president Ramon Ramirez is currently touring East Coast college campuses to encourage more student support.
Pictsweet and the Salem City Council
From the newswire: [ PCUN press release ]
Secretary of the Interior Gale Norton and Christie Todd Whitman's arrival at Portland State University was marked by a herd of caribou and an activist in a tripod. The little publicized Society of Environmental Journalists conference welcomed Gale Norton, Secretary of the Interior, and Christine Todd Whitman, Adminstrator of the EPA, to speak at the Friday plenary session about the Bush agenda on environmental issues.
Activists erected a tripod right outside the large wall of glass windows of the Smith Memorial Center, where inside, conference participants attended panels on the wise-use movement, aboriginal whaling, consumption, toxic waste, and even a panel on civil disobediance featuring Donald Fontenot of the Cascadia Forest Alliance, Craig Rosebraugh of the North American ELF press office, and William Pickell, of the Washington Contract Loggers Association.
October 22 is a nationally recognized day of protest against police brutality. Events were planned all over the country. In Portland, about two dozen passionate young people gathered at 21st NE and Alberta for a local observance. Carrying handmade signs, and led by a young woman dressed as a raven, they marched throughout this mixed-race neighborhood, taking the streets most of the way. They brought with them a large puppet of the Grim Reaper, which represented the connections between corporate power and the "criminal justice system".
Reception by people in the neighborhood was positive for the most part, with many honking their horns as they drove past the small parade. Police presence was nil at the beginning of the march, but inexplicably heavy by the end. The first officer who arrived halted the parade by grabbing the arm of the puppet [pictured, above]. He then ordered everybody onto the sidewalk, but they quickly took the street again. In contrast to previous occasions, the officers did not attempt to break up the event, and the young people successfully made their statement for justice.
Update:The police, in a seemingly petty move, confiscated the giant puppet, which had been carried during parades in other cities, including Seattle in November 99.
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