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23 May 2018

S.F. Airport Atrocity

Moro Activist Tortured, Refused Entry by Border Cops

The Partisan Defense Committee joins Filipino activists and others in protesting the brutal treatment of Jerome Succor Aba by Customs and Border Protection agents at San Francisco International Airport on April 17-18. A defender of the oppressed Muslim Moros and Lumad communities of the southern Philippines island of Mindanao, the 25-year-old activist was held for 28 hours as supporters rallied outside the airport to demand his release. According to a press release by Jessica Antonio, secretary general of Bayan USA, Aba was treated like an enemy combatant and subjected to rendition-style interrogation, including being forced to strip naked in front of an industrial fan blowing cold air and badgered about being a “terrorist” or “communist.” (read more...)

1 de mayo de 2018

Puerto Rico: ¡Libertad ya a los manifestantes del Primero de Mayo! ¡Abajo los cargos!

El Partisan Defense Committee condena el brutal ataque policiaco contra los jóvenes que participaron en las protestas del Primero de Mayo en San Juan contra la Junta colonial. Los policías con equipo antidisturbios lanzaron gas lacrimógeno a la gente y los golpearon con batones. También hicieron redadas en las viviendas de Río Piedras para buscar activistas. Denunciamos esta campaña de terror. El estado quiere silenciar a todos aquellos que se oponen a las medidas hambreadoras dictadas por los amos coloniales de Estados Unidos e impuestas por el gobierno capitalista de Puerto Rico. Al menos 19 personas fueron arrestadas, muchos de ellos estudiantes del plantel Río Piedras de la Universidad de Puerto Rico. ¡Libertad ya a los manifestantes! ¡Abajo los cargos! (leer más...)

1 May 2018

Puerto Rico: Free the May Day Protesters Now! Drop All Charges!

The Partisan Defense Committee condemns the vicious police attack on youth who were part of the May Day protests in San Juan against the colonial Junta. Cops in full riot gear fired tear gas into the crowd and beat people with batons. They also raided private homes in the Río Piedras neighborhood, searching for activists. We denounce this campaign of terror. The state wants to silence all those who oppose the starvation measures imposed by the U.S. colonial masters and enforced by the capitalist government of Puerto Rico. At least 19 people have been arrested, many of them students from the Río Piedras campus of the Universidad de Puerto Rico. Free the May Day protesters now! Drop all charges! (read more...)

25 August 2017

Facing 80 Years for Protesting Trump’s Inauguration

In Donald Trump’s America, the penalty for leftist protest could well be life behind bars. Thousands hit the streets of Washington, D.C., on January 20 to protest Trump’s inauguration. Amid an orgy of police violence, more than 200 were arrested and slammed with felony riot charges carrying jail sentences of up to ten years and $25,000 fines. But these frame-up charges were not enough for the vindictive ruling class. On April 27, prosecutors piled on eight new felony charges—including urging to riot, conspiracy to riot and destruction of property—while also charging three additional protesters. Filed at the behest of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for D.C., the fiefdom of notorious racist and defender of the Confederacy, Jeff Sessions, these charges carry jail terms of up to 80 years. It is in the vital interest of the labor movement and all opponents of state repression to protest this legal witchhunt and demand: Drop all the charges! (read more...)

25 August 2017

Stop Prison Torture of Tom Manning and Jaan Laaman!

Over the past several months, the Federal Bureau of Prisons has been intensifying its decades-long vendetta against class-war prisoners Tom Manning and Jaan Laaman. As punishment for their unwavering support for the struggles of the poor and oppressed and their opposition to U.S. imperialism, Laaman and Manning, the last two members of the Ohio 7 still in prison, were deprived of necessary medical attention, isolated in solitary and threatened with transfer to draconian “supermax control” units. For the racist capitalist rulers, this is an attempt to silence forever these courageous individuals who continue their political activism from behind the walls of America’s dungeons. (read more...)

25 August 2017

Durham, North Carolina

Leftists Tear Down Confederate Statue

Drop All Charges!

Eight leftists, many of them members of Workers World Party (WWP), were arrested in Durham, North Carolina, last week and slapped with outrageous felony charges—including incitement to riot—for pulling down a statue of a Confederate soldier. Erected at the instigation of the United Daughters of the Confederacy in 1924 and paid for with public funds, the statue was a vile celebration of the Jim Crow segregation enforced by the Democrats and the lynch-rope terror of a resurgent Ku Klux Klan. Until it was brought down, it stood for nearly a century in front of the old Durham County Courthouse. North Carolina’s liberal Research Triangle, which includes Durham, and its many universities are littered with monuments to the slavocracy. Those arrested for ridding this majority-black city of the statue have done black people, immigrants and the working class a real service. We demand: Drop all the charges now! (read more...)

25 August 2017

California

Drop All Charges Against Anti-Fascist Protesters!

The following protest letter to the Sacramento County District Attorney was issued by the Partisan Defense Committee on August 16. The PDC is a class-struggle, non-sectarian legal and social defense organization which champions cases and causes in the interest of the whole of the working people. This purpose is in accordance with the political views of the Spartacist League.

The Partisan Defense Committee protests the arrest and prosecution of Yvonne (Yvette) Felarca, Porfirio Paz and Michael Williams. All three face multiple felony and misdemeanor charges for defending themselves and others against the fascists of the Traditionalist Worker Party and the Golden State Skinheads who stabbed, slashed and clubbed anti-fascist protesters at the state Capitol in Sacramento on June 26, 2016. In their own words, these fascist terrorists had come armed to carry out a “fight to the death.” At least seven people, including Felarca, were stabbed, two of them hospitalized with critical wounds. (read more...)

28 July 2017

Berkeley: Defend Anti-Fascist Protester Eric Clanton

(Class-Struggle Defense Notes)

The following article appeared under the Partisan Defense Committee's Class-Struggle Defense Notes masthead in the print version of this issue of Workers Vanguard. The PDC is a class-struggle, non-sectarian legal and social defense organization which champions cases and causes in the interest of the whole of the working people. This purpose is in accordance with the political views of the Spartacist League.

The Partisan Defense Committee sent the following letter to the Alameda County district attorney’s office on July 10 demanding that charges be dropped against anti-fascist protester Eric Clanton, a former professor of philosophy at Diablo Valley College in the Bay Area. Since Clanton’s arrest, “alt-right” fascists have continued their threatening provocations, appearing at his arraignment hearing on May 26 carrying the Nazi-inspired “Kekistan” flag.

The Partisan Defense Committee strongly protests the arrest and multiple felony charges against Eric Clanton stemming from a rally in Berkeley on April 15th. (read more...)

28 July 2017

Bay Area Unionists Detained by I.C.E.

Free Mejía and Nuñez! Stop the Deportations!

(Class-Struggle Defense Notes)

The following article appeared under the Partisan Defense Committee's Class-Struggle Defense Notes masthead in the print version of this issue of Workers Vanguard. The PDC is a class-struggle, non-sectarian legal and social defense organization which champions cases and causes in the interest of the whole of the working people. This purpose is in accordance with the political views of the Spartacist League.

We print below a June 19 letter by the Partisan Defense Committee to the San Francisco field office of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (I.C.E.). The letter defends Hugo Mejía and Rodrigo Nuñez, two Bay Area union construction workers jailed by I.C.E. and threatened with deportation. They are currently awaiting decisions on their asylum cases from the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. (read more...)

30 June 2017

For Labor/Black Action to Stop the Fascists!

Fascist terror is a clear and present danger, and Ricky John Best and Taliesin Myrddin Namkai Meche are among its victims. On May 26 in Portland, white-supremacist Jeremy Christian murdered the two men after they intervened to stop his racist tirades against two young women—one black, the other Muslim. A little over a week later, on June 4, several hundred race-terrorists, feeling the wind in their sails in Trump’s America, mobilized in downtown Portland—essentially in a celebration of the murder of these two courageous men. (read more...)

30 June 2017

I.C.E. Takes Aim at L.A. Activist

Stop Deportation of Claudia Rueda!

We print below a leaflet issued by the Los Angeles Spartacist League on June 4. Claudia Rueda has since been released from detention but still faces deportation, as does her mother. Our comrades have distributed this leaflet in Southern California, including at protests outside the detention center near San Diego where Rueda had been held.

On the morning of May 18, 22-year-old immigrant rights activist Claudia Rueda was kidnapped off the street by a gang of Customs and Border Patrol thugs while she attempted to move her car. In April, her mother was falsely targeted by the Border Patrol and the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department for alleged drug smuggling. Picked up a few days after the release of her mother, Rueda was transferred to an Immigration and Customs Enforcement (I.C.E.) detention center over 100 miles away near San Diego and now faces deportation as an undocumented immigrant. Her attorney stressed that the immigration cops singled out Rueda because of her work in defense of her mother and her activism in support of undocumented youth, while a friend commented, “They wanted payback.” We demand: Free Rueda now! No deportations! Full citizenship rights for everyone who has made it to this country! (read more...)

30 June 2017

Remembering Bern Nix

1947–2017

(Letters)

To the Editor:

Sadly, I am writing to inform the readers of WV of the passing of Bern Nix (read more...)

2 June 2017

Salute Independence Fighter Oscar López Rivera

Colonialist Backlash Against Puerto Rican Day Parade

This year’s Puerto Rican Day Parade in New York City will honor Oscar López Rivera, a courageous independence fighter who was imprisoned by the U.S. for nearly 36 years for opposing the colonial subjugation of his homeland. After organizers announced that the June 11 parade would recognize López Rivera as a National Freedom Hero, Coca Cola, Goya, JetBlue, Univision, Corona and other corporations pulled out as sponsors of the event, which each year brings two million celebrators to Fifth Avenue. For their part, the Daily News and New York Post tabloids are whipping up a hysterical campaign against the parade, including labeling the Puerto Rican independentista a “terrorist.” In fact, the real terrorists are the U.S. imperialists, who have enslaved the island and mobilized, including through the CIA and FBI, to crush pro-independence militants, many of whom have been thrown into prison dungeons. (read more...)

19 May 2017

Arkansas Legal Lynching Machine

Abolish the Racist U.S. Death Penalty!

In just eight days—from April 20 to 27—the state of Arkansas executed three black men, Ledell Lee, Marcel Williams and Kenneth Williams, and one white man, Jack Jones. Governor Asa Hutchinson had originally ordered eight men to die in the span of eleven days, which would have set a record pace since the Supreme Court reinstated the death penalty in 1976. The four men who received stays of execution remain on death row. The pretext for the executions was to beat the clock on the April 30 expiration of midazolam, a component of the lethal injection cocktail for which no alternative is readily available. The real point, however, was to kick-start the machinery of death in a state that had last held an execution in 2005. (read more...)

24 March 2017

Courageous Radical Lawyer

Lynne Stewart

1939–2017

Radical attorney Lynne Stewart died in Brooklyn on March 7 at the age of 77. The immediate cause was a series of strokes which, together with metastasized breast cancer, finally drained the life out of this tireless fighter for the oppressed. Lynne’s death will be keenly felt by the incarcerated opponents of the U.S. government, for whom she fought until the end. Without her, the world is a lonelier, crueler place for these prisoners and their families. We offer our condolences to Lynne’s husband, Ralph Poynter, and her entire family. (read more...)


The PDC is a class-struggle, non-sectarian legal and social defense organization which champions cases and causes in the interest of the whole of the working people. This purpose is in accordance with the political views of the Spartacist League. Our heritage is the working-class defense policies of the International Labor Defense (ILD), under its founder and first secretary from 1925-1928, James P. Cannon. The PDC was initiated by the Spartacist League in 1974, and stands on the record of principled defense work conducted by the Spartacist League.

The PDC is partisan: we stand unconditionally on the side of working people and their allies in struggle against their exploiters and oppressors. We place all our faith in the power of the masses and no faith whatever in the “justice” of the courts. While favoring all possible legal proceedings for the cases we support, we recognize that the courts, prisons and police exist to maintain through organized violence and terror the rule of one class over others. In its partisanship, the PDC is also anti-sectarian. We champion causes and defend cases whose victorious outcomes are in the interest of working people, irrespective of particular political views. We defend, in the words of James P. Cannon, “any member of the workers movement, regardless of his views, who suffered persecution by the capitalist courts because of his activities or his opinion” (The First Ten Years of American Communism).