Occupy Wall Street's Act II
Hopefully it's a good second act.
by Stephen Lendman
Grassroots activism takes time to grow. Broad-based participation is vital. Issues must be clearly defined. Leadership is needed. Major obstacles must be overcome.
Avoiding being co-opted, diverted, divided, and/or subverted are key. So is staying the course because major struggles aren't won short-term. Achieving social justice is the mother of them all, especially in today's environment.
What began last September waned during winter cold. Perhaps May Day protests began Act II. Only the fullness of time will tell.
Mayday Occupy by By Photography Pablo Zequeira
Thousands rallied in cities across America. Public anger drew them. Demonstrations and marches were held. Issue one is social justice. Getting it's another story. Since last September, nothing has been achieved.
Expect worse ahead. Post-elections, political Washington plans huge domestic spending reductions on top of those enacted earlier.
Trillions of dollars will be cut over the next decade. Despair promises to replace hope and change. The fading American dream's on life support. Reversing it indeed is the mother of all struggles. It's tougher with Homeland Security allied with local cops to monitor and crack down.
Last fall, Department of Homeland Security (DHS), FBI, and other federal security agencies began coordinating with city officials and police to subvert and disrupt Occupy Wall Street encampments.
Tactics include violent confrontations, infiltrating local groups, and close monitoring. In 2003, a federal judge expanded New York police surveillance powers. Citing "fundamental changes in the threats to public security," he relaxed a longstanding court order restricting police monitoring of political groups.
A 1985 Handschu agreement consent decree imposed restrictions. It involved a political advocacy group's 1971 lawsuit against NYPD's Red Squad.
FBI COINTELPRO tactics still harass disruptively. Targeted groups are monitored, infiltrated, sabotaged, and destroyed. At issue is subverting social, economic and political equality advocacy.
Secret/illegal tactics are used. Earlier targeted groups included communists, political dissidents, anti-war, human and civil rights activists, the Black Panther Party, the American Indian Movement, and other organizations.
In their book "Agents of Repression," Ward Churchill and Jim Vander Wall wrote: