In an educational sponsored by the Bloomington-Normal Coalition for Peace and Justice (BNCPJ and the Bloomington-Normal branch of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), over 20 people heard Joe Iosbaker, a Chicago labor and peace activist, discuss FBI targeting of peace and international solidarity activists in recent years.
In his talk, Mr. Iosbaker related the FBI raids on himself and other Midwest peace activists in 2010, all of whom were involved in organizing peaceful anti-war protests during the 2008 Republican Convention in Saint Paul, Minnesota. Although all the activists were served subpoenas to appear before a federal grand jury, not one out of the 14 activists agreed to comply with the witchhunt.
The website Committee to Stop FBI Repression (stopfbi.net) has a comprehensive timeline of the events surrounding the case.
After two years, the FBI harassment of the Midwest activists is still a threat even though no formal charges have been made. An outpouring of solidarity from individuals and groups has brought national attention to the case.
During the question and answer period held after Mr. Iosbaker’s talk, the conversation also included FBI repression of Carlos Montes, other peace groups and the Occupy movement.