Police Repression and Government Abuse of Power: The Case of Assata Shakur



On Thursday, May 2, 2013, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the State of New Jersey placed Sister Assata Shakur on the terrorist list and doubled the bounty for her capture from one million to two million dollars. This makes Sister Assata the first women to be placed on the FBI’s Most Wanted Terrorist List.

This action on the part of the FBI and New Jersey State Police is just another example that aligns itself with the ongoing history of abuse and injustices directed towards those who struggled for Black self-determination and the human and civil rights of all people. Notwithstanding the denouncements of the illegalities and Constitutional violations of the FBI’s Counterintelligence Program (COINTELPRO) by the (Senator Frank) Church Committee Hearings, the designation of terrorist demonstrates the continued racist repression and hypocrisy of the FBI and State police agencies towards Blacks.

By any legitimate standard, terrorism is the use of violence or the threat thereof to cower a people/population for political ends. Not surprisingly, it is the FBI and the State of New Jersey that evidently seek, as they have in the past, to cower and intimidate the people away from standing for justice, fairness, and humanity. This action on the part of the FBI is evidently designed to play on the ignorance and fears of the people. There is no rhyme or reason for this designation after 40 years since her arrest, except to inflame public sentiment and opinion in characterizing Sister Assata as a terrorist.

The Jericho Movement to free all Political Prisoners denounces this action on the part of the FBI and State of New Jersey, and joins with all good minded people and organizations who stand for justice and fairness, in demanding that this action be rescinded and that Assata be free!

Jericho Steering Committee
May 4, 2013