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Protesters rally against FBI following raids

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Several groups were demonstrating Monday afternoon against a series of raids conducted by federal agents last week.

For the third day in a row, supporters of those targeted by the FBI for investigation came out to protest the raids conducted by agents on Friday on two Chicago homes and six in Minneapolis.

Among those targeted are anti-war activists Joe Iosbaker and his wife, Stephanie Weiner, who have been subpoenaed to appear before a federal grand jury.

"They are attacking the entire anti-war and peace and justice movement. We are not going to be silenced," said Maureen Murphy of the Palestine Solidarity Group.

For it's part, the FBI will only say that its actions are part of an ongoing investigation into activities "concerning the material support of terrorism." The federal agency has not said anything about why the people who were raided are being targeted for investigation.

Ret. Air Force Major General and counterterrorism expert Charles Tucker defended the FBI's actions Monday.

"Darned if you do, darned if you don't. If you do, whoever is being investigated is saying, 'You don't like my race, for whatever reason. You don't like my religion, you don't like my politics. You're just doing it for whatever reason.' If you don't do it and they move forward, the public has an expectation that you waited too long. You put us in danger," Tucker said.

Furthermore, Tucker, who is also former Judge Advocate General and has worked in the Middle East, says there is a reason the FBI is targeting U.S. citizens in their investigation.

"The dirty secret is that, increasingly, we're getting attacks in places like Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, the Middle East, where the people, the perpetrators, the ones that are providing the material support, are here in the United States, and that's a new phenomenon," said Tucker.

"We believe that these FBI raids were just a big fishing expedition on behalf of the FBI to try to demobilize and fracture our movement, which is growing strong are by the day," said Murphy.

Ten people have now been subpoenaed to testify before a federal grand jury. Those testimonies will begin on October 5, when ABC7 is told, many of the groups rallying Monday will once again protest against the raids. Protestors say they will be out again in force on October the 16th to commemorate the U.S.' invasion of Afghanistan.

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