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The criminalization of political opposition in America

By       Message Patrick Martin       (Page 2 of 2 pages) Become a premium member to see this article and all articles as one long page.     Permalink

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opednews.com Headlined to H3 5/13/14

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The examples given above are not merely isolated examples, but test cases for repressive measures that will be taken on a far wider scale in the event of a broader movement among working people against imperialist war and the ceaseless attacks on jobs and living standards at home.

No section of the American ruling class and no institution of the capitalist state, including the courts, will lift a finger against such sweeping attacks on democratic rights. Those who might doubt this should recall last year's military-police lockdown of Boston following the Boston Marathon bombings. They should also take note of the statement earlier this year by Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, referring to the mass detention of Japanese-Americans during World War II, when he declared, "you are kidding yourself if you think the same thing will not happen again" under conditions of a major American war.

In the mid-1980s, the Reagan administration drew up plans (Operation Rex '84) for the mass detention of hundreds of thousands of Central American immigrants and other likely opponents of a US invasion of Nicaragua or El Salvador. There is no doubt that similar plans exist, in a far more developed form, for contingencies such as a US invasion of Iran or war with China or Russia.

The National Defense Authorization Act (2012) expressly gives the US military the power to seize and imprison any person anywhere in the world, including within the US, on "terror" allegations -- without charges, evidence, or trial. And as the revelations by Edward Snowden demonstrate, the US government is using its vast surveillance and data collection apparatus to create political dossiers of those individuals who would be targeted for such repression.

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The Socialist Equality Party demands the release of the NATO 3 and Cecily McMillan and all others imprisoned in the United States as the result of political frame-ups. The defense of democratic rights and the abolition of police-state measures must be linked to the independent mobilization of the working class in opposition to the political representatives of the corporate and financial aristocracy and the capitalist system they defend.

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Patrick Martin writes for the World Socialist Website (wsws.org), a forum for socialist ideas & analysis & published by the International Committee of the Fourth International (ICFI).

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