Monday, August 23, 2004


NY Post says NYPD is monitoring members of the radical Weather Underground. The Galvin Opinion finds out some of them are now law professors and "Jeopardy!" champions. The NY Times says Linda S. Evans, who was granted clemency by President Bill Clinton for convictions related to bombings and released from prison in 2001 after serving nearly 16 years, lives in Santa Rosa, Calif. She received a Soros criminal justice fellowship from the Open Society Institute.

William "Kill all the rich people" Ayers, Professor of Education, University of Illinois at Chicago and Bernardine Dohrn, Director, Children and Family Justice Center Clinical Associate Professor of Law, Northwestern University School of Law, Chicago.

NY Post Exclusive:

A number of extremists with ties to the 1970s radical Weather Underground have recently been released from prison and are in New York preparing to wreak havoc during the Republican National Convention, The Post has learned.

A top-level source with extensive knowledge of police plans wouldn't disclose the names of the aging rabble-rousers but said a handful of them are already here and will play a behind-the-scenes role in attempting to disrupt the GOP gala.

"These people are trained in kidnapping techniques, bombmaking and building improvised munitions," the source said. "They've very bad people."


Originally called "The Weathermen," the anarchist organization came into existence in June 1969 as a radical splinter group of the Students for a Democratic Society.

During a two-year stretch, the group bombed a number of high-profile government buildings, primarily to protest the Vietnam War and racism in America.


While the group has been largely unheard from for more than 30 years, the release "over the last two years" of anarchists tied to the Underground — and their apparent willingness to return to their old ways — has the NYPD tracking their every move.


Despite the addition of the older anti-government zealots to the frightening possibility of Islamic militants and other domestic terrorists and anarchists — the source is confident the NYPD can keep the peace as the convention kicks off next week. "This is the Super Bowl of police actions, and we're ready for it," the source said.


The NYPD is also tracking five extremist groups, according to a manual obtained by The Post titled "Executive Resource Handbook on Radical Groups." Among the groups mentioned are the Earth Liberation Front, Refuse & Resist, and International A.N.S.W.E.R. (Act Now to Stop War and End Racism).

September 17, 2003: FOXNews.com Radical Kathy Boudin Released From Prison

Over bitter protests from law officers, 1960s radical Kathy Boudin was released from prison Wednesday after serving 22 years for murder in an armored car heist that left two policemen and a security guard dead.

"I'm physically ill right now," said Brent Newbury, president of the Rockland County Patrolmen's Benevolent Association. "I can't believe I just saw Kathy Boudin walk out of prison."

Boudin, 60, a former Weather Underground (search) member, was granted parole last month despite heavy opposition of relatives, friends and colleagues of the slain men.


Boudin was once a member of the Weather Underground — a group that helped define the radical anti-war movement of the 1960s with its violent protests and bombings.

She was later recruited for the robbery by Black Liberation Army (search) members and other radicals. The robbers stole $1.6 million from a Brink's armored car at a suburban mall and killed security guard Peter Paige. The two policemen, Sgt. Edward O'Grady and Officer Waverly Brown, were gunned down when the truck, with Boudin in the passenger seat, was stopped at a roadblock and gang members burst from the back of the vehicle with automatic weapons firing.

Boudin was caught as she fled. She had been a fugitive for the previous decade after she was seen running from an explosion at a New York City townhouse where bombs allegedly were being made.

Boudin, the daughter of the late civil rights attorney Leonard Boudin, was convicted of murder and robbery and sentenced to 20 years to life in prison in the robbery.


One of the details of Boudin's new life was announced about seven hours after her release. Kathleen McGovern, a spokeswoman for St. Luke's Hospital in Manhattan, said Boudin will take a job at the hospital developing programs for HIV-positive women.


Anamarie Scala-Doran, whose police officer father was killed in an attempted robbery in 1975 while guarding St. Luke's payroll, was outraged by word of the job. "It's offensive to my family and me that my father gave his life protecting the people of St. Luke's Hospital, yet they would consider employing a person guilty of murdering police officers," she said in an opinion piece in Wednesday's New York Post.

The Weather Underground's Legacy of Violence:
August 24, 2003: NY Times: Quieter Lives for 60's Militants but Intensity of Beliefs Hasn't Faded

When explosives accidentally demolished a Greenwich Village town house 33 years ago, three young militants inside were killed, leaving two of their comrades to stagger out and into clandestine life. All were members of the Weathermen, a violent offshoot of 1960's radicalism.

One of the survivors, Kathy Boudin, was granted parole last week for her role in a 1981 armored car robbery that left a Brink's guard and two police officers dead.

The Boudin case was a compelling reminder of a turbulent era. But the other woman who escaped serves as another reminder, of how a once revolutionary band has dispersed into the rhythms of quieter lives and more peaceful, but not always more remorseful, idealism.

The woman, Cathy Wilkerson, lives in Brooklyn. The mother of a grown daughter, she has spent the past two decades teaching mathematics in high schools and adult education programs.

Many former Weathermen have taken up careers that they see as an extension of their political commitment: teaching, social work and advocating causes like environmental protection, care for AIDS patients and prisoners' rights. Today they proclaim the same ideals they held four decades ago, and sharply condemn American policies at home and abroad.

Members of the Weathermen began resurfacing in the late 1970's after the group dissolved in 1976. Ms. Wilkerson emerged from hiding and surrendered to the authorities in 1980. She spent 11 months in jail on explosives charges in the explosion of the town house, on West 11th Street, which was owned by her father.

"We were way not the first," she said. "It was a mass phenomenon. In 1969, national liberation was sweeping the world and looked like it was going to be the main vehicle for ushering in popular governments. Now the wave of violence sweeping the world is reactionary." Like other former members, she said the movement made "mistakes," adding, "We were all young, under 25 for the most part."

Conservative critics, including Prof. Harvey Klehr, the Andrew W. Mellon professor of politics and history at Emory University in Atlanta, have little patience for that view. "It would behoove people like that who did illegal, morally reprehensible things to have some sense of remorse," he said.

Professor Klehr also took a dim view of the often stated account that after the town house explosion, the Weathermen resolved to take no lives, and that in the string of bombings that followed, no one was seriously injured. He points out that members have said the explosives at the town house were intended for an officers' dance at Fort Dix in New Jersey and for Butler Library at Columbia University.

"The only reason they were not guilty of mass murder is mere incompetence," he said. "I don't know what sort of defense that is."


The Weathermen — who took their name from the Bob Dylan lyric "You don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows" — originated as a faction of Students for a Democratic Society.

The leaders came from reasonably well-off families, though several interviewed said a common portrait of them as privileged children of the rich was a caricature. Charismatic and articulate, they employed revolutionary jargon, advocated armed struggle and black liberation and began bombing buildings, taking responsibility for at least 20 attacks. Estimates of their number ranged at times from several dozen to several hundred.


Their revolutionary language pursues them to this day, including the phrase attributed to Bill Ayers, a Weathermen founder, to "kill all the rich people." Then there were the words of Bernardine Dohrn, another founder, who seemed to delight in the Manson family murders before a Students for a Democratic Society crowd in 1969. (She has since said it was a joke.)

Mr. Ayers is distinguished professor of education at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Ms. Dohrn, his wife, teaches law at Northwestern University and is director of its Children and Family Justice Center. Together they raised Ms. Boudin's only child, her son, Chesa Boudin, who graduated from Yale in June and is a Rhodes scholar.

Mr. Ayers returned to the public eye two years ago with the publication of a book, "Fugitive Days," about his life as a Weatherman. And while they have been among the most outspoken members of the group, the couple would not be interviewed because, they said, they did not want to jeopardize Ms. Boudin's pending release. For the same reason, other former members also said they did not want to talk publicly, or limited their comments.


Four defendants in the Brink's case, two of them the former Weather Underground members Judith Clark and David J. Gilbert, are serving life prison terms with parole not scheduled for another half-century.


Another significant figure in the Weathermen was Jeff Jones, one of a group of Ms. Boudin's friends and supporters who lobbied for her parole. A former reporter for an alternative newspaper, he is now communications director for an environmental lobbying group in Albany. He said he felt "absolute horror at the idiocy" of the Bush administration. In Iraq, he said, the president "has gone down the path of Vietnam." "We are now in a guerrilla war on foreign soil," Mr. Jones said.


Linda S. Evans, who was granted clemency by President Bill Clinton for convictions related to bombings and released from prison in 2001 after serving nearly 16 years, lives in Santa Rosa, Calif. She received a Soros criminal justice fellowship from the Open Society Institute and works to restore civil rights to felons. "I'm trying to make things better in our society," she said in a telephone interview. "I just feel really strongly that the policies of our government are just anti-human at every level."


Mark Rudd, the Students for a Democratic Society leader from Columbia, teaches mathematics at the Albuquerque Technical Vocational Institute, a community college. He, too, has called the group's violence a "terrible mistake."

An early organizer, Jonathan Lerner, wrote an article for The Washington Post Magazine last year about his Weathermen days in which he denounced the group as a "cult of leftist cynicism and violence" whose members amounted to "political terrorists."


Brian Flanagan, who was acquitted of assault and attempted murder charges stemming from the 1969 "Days of Rage" violence that surrounded the Chicago Eight trial, owns a bar, the Night Cafe on the Upper West Side, which was the setting for several interviews filmed for the recent documentary "The Weather Underground," which was directed by Sam Green and Bill Siegel.

The film revived contacts among former members, Mr. Flanagan said, and prompted him and others to open up about the past in interviews and public forums. He said he recently met up with Ms. Wilkerson in the bar, which has become what he called "definitely a lefty bar."

"There were a lot of things I had trouble coming to terms with over the years, and this has resurrected them," Mr. Flanagan said of the documentary which, he said, portrayed him as more rueful than he felt.

"I was regretful over about 5 percent of what we did," he said. "I think 95 percent of what we did was great, and we'd do it again."

And what was the 5 percent? The town house, Mr. Flanagan said. When pressed, he said he regretted both the deaths of the three Weathermen — Ted Gold, Diana Oughton and Terry Robbins — and the plan to bomb the dance at Fort Dix and the library at Columbia, which could have taken lives.

And life outside politics? "I run my business," he said. "I shoot pool, I drink wine. I'm old and fat." He also mentioned winning $23,000 as a contestant on "Jeopardy!"

"God bless America," Mr. Flanagan said.

Update: Res Ipsa Loquitur hopes The Man is succesful.


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