In 1971, the year that John Kerry spoke before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee lending remote support to the Communists in Vietnam, another anti-war, anti-American assemblage sought to spread its Communist message by detonating a bomb in the U.S. Capitol Building. The Weather Underground, a 1970’s-era violent Communist entity, in total, was responsible for the bombings of the National Guard offices in Washington, D.C., the U.S. Capitol Building, the New York City Police Headquarters, and the Pentagon. Three decades have past since the group’s insidious bombing spree; however, the Weather Underground’s hatred of America has remained, and members of the outfit have set their sights on this week’s Republican National Convention.
In an August 23, 2004 New York Post article, Stefan C. Friedman reported that extremists affiliated with the Weather Underground, who have recently been released from prison, are planning to “wreak havoc” at the 2004 GOP Convention in New York. Friedman’s source for the information, an individual with inside knowledge of the security measures being taken at the convention, went on record as saying, “These people [the Weather Underground] are trained in kidnapping techniques, bombmaking and building improvised munitions… They're very bad people.” Although Friedman’s source withheld the names of the Weather Underground’s associates that officials are tracking, the fanatics that have served as Weather Underground members and leaders over the years have indeed included some “very bad people.”
The Weather Underground started as a splinter faction of Students for a Democratic Society (SDS), which is recognized as being the first group to hold an antiwar rally in Washington, D.C. in protest of the War in Vietnam. Initial members of the Weather Underground differed from SDS in their perceived means of transforming the U.S. into a Communist country, and in 1969, the group split from SDS, steered by aspirations of a more violent rebellion against the principals of America. That same year, members of the Weather Underground traveled to Havana, Cuba. During this time in Havana, makeshift camps erected by Soviet KGB Colonel Vadim Kotchergine were instructing Western radicals in the Philosophy of Karl Marx and the techniques of guerilla warfare, including bomb-making. The group’s purpose for the trip to Havana was to strategize for their looming assault on America; their newly realized objective was to destroy the U.S., both physically and psychologically, by carrying out terrorist acts aimed at key landmarks – the same as the 9/11 terrorists did over thirty years later. With this as their goal, the group conducted their infamous bombing raids, targeting familiar symbols of American freedom and Democracy.
Most surviving members of the group are still active in anti-American circles. Although many have spent time in jail, they are unrepentant about their violent actions.
Of her involvement in the terrorist actions of the Weather Underground, member Laura Whitehorn has said, “I'm unrepentant. I'm proud of my motives.” Whitehorn currently serves as a visiting college lecturer, espousing her anti-American rhetoric to suggestible students at university campuses across the country, including Cornell, Brown, and Vassar Universities. Whitehorn has said. "I don't really even care that much whether people think I'm a terrorist or not. These labels have everything to do with your own politics and not much with what the people do." While not viewing her own activities as such, Whitehorn contrarily calls the actions of the U.S. “terrorism,” including the Vietnam War and the current War in Iraq.
In 1981, Whitehorn’s other group, the May 19th Communist Organization, viciously killed two police officers and a security guard in an armored truck robbery in New York; their goal was to secure additional funds for their own terrorist bombing campaign. From 1983 to 1985, the group bombed the National War College, the Washington Navy Yard Computing Center, the Israeli Aircraft Industries Building, New York City's South African Consulate, the Washington Navy Yard Officers' Club, New York City's Patrolmen's Benevolent Association, and the United Stated Capitol Building. Whitehorn was arrested and convicted in the 1983 U.S. Capitol bombing. She served fourteen years in Federal prison.
Indicating her inclination for terrorism, and her subsequent abhorrence of U.S. Capitalism, Weather Underground leader Bernardine Dohrn has said, “Terrorism and crime are not the main problems of today. Leveling the playing field economically should be our main concern.” Dohrn is currently the director of the Legal Clinic's Children and Family Justice Center, and Clinical Associate Professor of Law at Northwestern University.
Dohrn has audaciously said to students, “During your student years here, the cruelly brutal, criminal attacks of September 11, 2001, the shredded economy and loss of jobs, the consequences of deregulation and devolution that bankrupted state and local governments, the relentless punishment and imprisoning of over two million people in America, flagrant corporate plunder and criminality, rolling blackouts, the apparently permanent war on terrorism, the shock and awe occupation of Iraq, systematic and degrading detention without trial, torture and extra-judicial assassinations, and the establishment of a crescent of new U.S. military bases across the Middle East and South Asia – all have transformed whatever blissful illusions were harbored as you entered college.”
Dohrn also sits on the advisory board of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), which pervasively masks its Communist intentions behind its incessant calls for “civil liberties.” ACLU co-founder, Roger Baldwin, once stated, “Communism is the goal… I don’t regret being part of the Communist tactic. I knew what I was doing. I was not an innocent Liberal.” Aside from the ACLU being steered by domestic terrorists, its recent goals have been to ardently lobby against Homeland Security measures, such as the Patriot Act, which seek to impede the influx of foreign terrorists into the United States. The lax positions on terrorism of Communist groups like the ACLU serve to demonstrate their own intentions of defeating Capitalism, by making the U.S unequivocally vulnerable to foreign threats.
Dohrn’s husband, Bill Ayers, also served as a leader of the Weather Underground. Ayers, who has summed up the philosophy of the group as, “Kill all the rich people. Break up their cars and apartments. Bring the revolution home, Kill your parents...,” is now alarmingly employed as a professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago, and has written a number of books about parenthood, such as: A Kind and Just Parent; To Become a Teacher; City Kids, City Teachers; To Teach; and The Good Preschool Teacher.
Ayers has also written a new book that deals specifically with his life as a Weather Underground leader. In the book, which is entitled Fugitive Days, Ayers gleefully recounts his bombing spree in the early 1970’s. He states, “There’s something about a good bomb… Night after night, day after day, each majestic scene I witnessed was so terrible and so unexpected that no city would ever again stand innocently fixed in my mind. Big buildings and wide streets, cement and steel were no longer permanent. They, too, were fragile and destructible. A torch, a bomb, a strong enough wind, and they, too, would come undone or get knocked down.”
In 1970, Ayers’ then-girlfriend, Diana Oughton, and two other members were killed while making a bomb that they intended to use at an army dance at Fort Dix, New Jersey. If they had been successful in their murderous attempt, thousands of soldiers and their dates would have died in the bombing. Ayers admitted that the bomb would have done serious damage, “tearing through windows and walls and, yes, people too.”
Both Ayers and Dohrn spent the 70’s fleeing from Federal prosecution. In 1980, the two surrendered to authorities, and were later released due to “improper surveillance.” Ayers has remarked, “I don't regret setting bombs. I feel we didn't do enough.” In his book, Fugitive Days, when pondering the prospect of ever using explosives and bombs again, Ayers states, “I can’t imagine entirely dismissing the possibility.” Demonstrating what particularly angers him, Ayers, in a New York Times article inadvertently published on September 9, 2001, stated, “Oh, I'm troubled, troubled. We're living in a country where the election [of 2000] was stolen, and we didn't have a mass uprising. It's incredible. We're all asleep.” With the coming elections it remains to be seen what shape Ayers’ complicity may have in any “mass uprising.”
Regardless of how the Weather Underground’s detestation of the U.S manifests itself at next week’s Republican convention, the group will not be alone. Other organizations are planning their own radical, aggressive protests against the Bush Administration and America in general. A31, an assemblage of various anarchist and anti-war groups, including Code Pink for Peace and the War Resisters League, is expecting thousands of participants in its civil unrest, scheduled for August 31. The group boasts, “We will turn the streets of NYC into stages of resistance… A wave of actions will occur around the buildings of war profiteers, Republican donors and the corporations that have hijacked our air, water, land, pensions and voice.” Another group planning to hit the GOP convention en masse is United for Peace and Justice (UFPJ). UFPJ is co-chaired by Leslie Cagan, who is personally responsible for organizing millions of protestors from such organizations as the Communist Party USA, the Workers World Party, and the Socialist Workers Party in their own protests of America over the years. UFPJ’s rally cry for dissent at this year’s convention ominously reads, “Together, we will send a message so powerful it cannot be ignored…”
In 1971, while John Kerry, speaking before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, stated, “we cannot fight Communism all over the world… There is no threat. The Communists are not about to take over our McDonald hamburger stands,” members of the Weather Underground were planning to bomb American buildings in the name of their Communist cause. Three decades later, and the Weather Underground is still threatening the U.S., and the Communist-apologist, John Kerry, is curiously running for President. As demonstrated through their bombings of the National Guard offices in Washington, D.C., the U.S. Capitol Building, the New York City Police Headquarters, and the Pentagon, and the continued virulence of its members, the Weather Underground has shown that the group’s conspicuous hatred of America doesn’t subside with time.