Monday, July 18, 2005

Political Dissent Is Terrorism

At least, that's what the U.S. government seems to think. Today's Washington Post reports that FBI documents released in connection with a lawsuit by a coalition of political advocacy groups reveal that the FBI's counterterrorism unit surveiled activist groups involved in organizing protests at the 2004 Republican and Democratic conventions in New York City and in Boston.

The FBI claims they were not targeting political dissent; just "providing security" -- but apparently they believe that freedom of speech and of assembly is the same thing as violence.

Leslie Cagan, of United for Peace and Justice, nails it: "It's one thing to monitor protests and protest organizers, but quite another thing to refer them to your counterterrorism unit."

Exactly right.

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