Over the past few weeks the FBI has contacted and spoken with at least two individuals who have been involved in Occupy Seattle. In both instances, the agents have threatened to take these individuals away from their loved ones. From what is known, these individuals were contacted because of the events surrounding the May 1st General Strike.
It is unknown what specific allegations and accusations the FBI is leveling against these individuals, but the standard tactic of the FBI is to exaggerate the seriousness and consequences of an offense in order to scare someone into cooperating with them or becoming an informant. We would like to remind everyone involved in Occupy Seattle that under no circumstances should anyone talk to the FBI. Anything that is said to them, no matter how seemingly insignificant, can potentially put someone else at risk.
It is important to remember that within the last month and a half the FBI has entrapped several people related to the Occupy movement. In Ohio, five people were befriended by an FBI informant and given fake explosives to blow up a bridge. In Chicago, two informants helped set up five anti-NATO protestors who are now being charged with terrorist offenses. The FBI utilizes a multitude of cheap and dirty tactics in order to ruin people's lives and destroy social movements. No matter how nice and polite individual agents may seem, it must not be forgotten that these people will resort to anything in order to achieve their objectives. That is their job.
We do not want this letter to spread fear, we simply want the broader Seattle community to be informed as to what these predators are doing. Knowing that they are currently looking for people to coerce and manipulate, there are a few simple steps we can all take to minimize their efforts to destroy this social movement:
1: Do not talk to the FBI if they approach you. Simply refuse to answer any questions pertaining to your or others' opinions or activities. Agents will typically use various manipulative tricks to get information out of you—threats, intimidation, claiming that they already know more than they actually do, claiming that another person has already spilled the beans, etc. Stay strong and keep silent—they do not care about you, they only want to use you to hurt others.
2: If you are contacted by the FBI, contact a lawyer as soon as possible. If you need help raising funds or finding a lawyer, seek help from friends.
3: If possible, make a public statement that explains what the FBI was asking. This is an important step, as it will prevent paranoia from spreading, something the FBI desires to happen within a social movement.
4: Remember that there are thousands of people on your side, ready to help and protect you to the best of our abilities. Anyone whose lives are negatively impacted by the FBI will be supported and no one will be forgotten. Reach out to your comrades and not the FBI.
Since its creation by J. Edgar Hoover, the FBI has been a malignant and hostile force whose primary goal is the destruction of all positive social movements. They are the people who orchestrated the assassinations of Black Panthers and American Indian Movement activists and they are the people who put a bomb under environmental activist Judi Bari's car. They prey on the fearful and build their careers off of misery and imprisonment. They are the enemies of freedom and the defenders of tyranny. Know who they are but do not fear them. Fear is their greatest ally.
We hope this letter finds you well and unafraid.
Some concerned friends
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