Fred Arena, Vanguard American Member and Unite the Right 2 Planner, Sentenced to Six Months

from It’s Going Down

[This post only contains information relevant to Philadelphia and the surrounding area, to read the entire articles follow the above links.]

Fred Arena, a member of Vanguard America and a co-planner of Unite the Right 2, was sentenced to six months for lying to the FBI about his membership in the group in order to obtain a security clearance.

In January 2019, Arena applied for a security clearance as part of his job as a security contractor at the Philadelphia Naval Yard. According to a Department of Justice press release, Arena was “required to disclose whether he had ever been a member of an organization that used (or advocated the use of) force or violence to prevent others from exercising their constitutional rights. He falsely answered that he had not.”

In June 2018, Arena was doxxed as a member of the neo-Nazi organization when antifascist infiltrators leaked the event’s planning chats to Unicorn Riot. In the chats, Arena repeatedly discussed his capacity for violence, his links to and in a public Facebook post, endorsed a statement from Andrew Anglin associate “Ludovici Alibi,” saying that “The only answer to Antifa is Atomwaffen,” (a neo-Nazi group linked to five murders in the US) adding “Absolutely agreed! And a few other crazy fucks like myself!! HAIL VICTORY!”

In private chats with an antifascist infiltrator posing as a neo-Nazi, Arena claimed that he and other Vanguard America members were planning on hiding weapons in the Charlottesville park, should the permits be granted, and said he was organizing a group of Vanguard American, Hammerskins, and Atomwaffen members to attend.

“At a minimum I would have a shield, a really good stun gun. A medium-sized padlock tight on the end of a handkerchief makes it a very good weapon,” Arena told an antifascist infiltrator whom he believed to be a fellow member of the Unite the Right 2 security team via Facebook, where he used the pseudonym “McCormick Foley.” After Arena’s bail hearing in October 2019, journalist Nick Martin posted prosecution exhibits to Twitter.

A motion for pretrial detention notes that Arena had a history of threatening witnesses, including one Charlottesville resident whom he believed to be a federal informant. “During their investigation, agents also learned that Arena made online and verbal threats against two women with whom he had failed relationships…. In both cases he threatened to sever intimate parts of the women’s bodies and store the parts in a jar,” prosecutors argued in a motion for pretrial detention.

Though Arena faced up to 20 years in prison, he was sentenced to only six months, with two years supervised release.

Though This Week in Fascism does not endorse imprisonment (or the criminal justice system as a whole), as a collaborator of this author noted, this is disappointing because the length of prison sentences is often a shorthand for the importance with which society views a given issue.

Though some will celebrate Arena’s sentence as a victory of the state, it is anything but. It was antifascists, not federal investigators, who exposed Arena’s affiliations.

Even though Arena was interviewed by the FBI in August 2018 after he was doxxed by antifascist activists as a member of Vanguard America, he was allowed to keep his job at the Philadelphia Naval Yard for fourteen more months, and for 10 months after applying for a security clearance.

This is the failure of the State, and the degree to which it does not treat seriously the threat of fascism and white nationalism. The need for antifascists is greater than ever. We keep us safe!

Prison Rebel Birthdays for February, 2020

from It’s Going Down

[This post only contains information relevant to Philadelphia and the surrounding area, to read the entire articles follow the above links.]

Inspired by the spirit of the Political Prisoners Birthday crew, (and recycling some of their artwork because why not) here’s a short listing of some rebel prisoners who have upcoming birthdays in February. For an an introduction on how to write to prisoners and some things to do and not to do, go here. If you have the time, please also check IWOC’s listing of prisoners facing retaliation for prison strike-related organizing.

February also sees the International Day of Solidarity with Leonard Peltier on the 6th. And sending big congratulations to Delbert Africa, the last-but-one MOVE 9 prisoner, who was released in January after serving over 40 years inside! You can donate to his release fund here.

Deric Forney

A former Vaughn 17 defendant. While Deric was acquitted in court of all charges in relation to the uprising, he is facing continued retaliation, as he has been moved out of state to Pennsylvania, where many Vaughn defendants are being held on lockdown indefinitely (via placement on PA’s Restricted Release List) on vague and questionable grounds. More than two years later, these prisoners are still being abused for staying in solidarity with one another against the state.

Birthday: February 6

Address:

Smart Communications / PA DOC
Deric Forney – NS2698
SCI Coal Township
PO Box 33028
St. Petersburg, FL, 33733

Luis Sierra (Abdul-Haqq El-Qadeer)

A former Vaughn 17 defendant. While the state has now dropped its attempts to criminalize Luis in relation to the uprising, Vaughn defendants continue to face retaliation. Luis is also a contributor to “Live from the Trenches,” the Vaughn 17 zine.

Birthday: February 19

Address:

Luis Sierra #00455723
James T. Vaughn Correctional Center
1181 Paddock Rd
Smyrna, DE 19977

 

January Letter Writing: Michael Kimble!

from Facebook


Join us once again for monthly letter-writing to either strike up correspondence with someone new or keep up your correspondence with an existing penpal in prison.

When: Monday, January 27th, 6:30-8:30pm

Where: A-Space, 4722 Baltimore Ave.

January’s letter writing is in support of Michael Kimble who is a Black, gay anarchist serving a life sentence for the murder of a white, homophobic, racist bigot. He was recently placed in segregation at Holman Correctional, in Alabama, for coming to the defense of a fellow prisoner who was being beaten by guards. He is urgently asking for support in attaining transfer to a new facility.

Michael has been politically active behind bars for many years, in particular helping agitate for the 2016 national prison strike, which made waves across the country and largely started as the brainchild of prison rebels at Holman. He is also the author of several zines, and his writing can be found at anarchylive.noblogs.org.

We will also send birthday cards to political prisoners with birthdays in January.
We will have snacks and stamps and all the supplies. Bring yourself, bring a friend!

Phone Zap for Akil January 17

from Dreaming Freedom | Practicing Abolition

Important: Please do not mention anyone’s name on the inside when asked how you know about the attack. You do not have to give your name either.

Yesterday, two guards at SCI-Fayette in PA had a calm, compliant man in handcuffs. They punched him in the pack of the head, body slammed him, and threw him in the hole. All of it went down in front of cameras and an entire block of witnesses.

Akil Johnson needs medical care and immediate release from the hole. The two officers who did this–CO Williamson and CO Lacey--deserve to be fired immediately. At the very least, they must be suspended, investigated, and disciplined. At the absolute least, they must never be permitted to be on Akil’s block again.

Today we are calling to voice these demands, and to remind PA-DOC and its racist, violent guards that we see them.

Please call SCI-Fayette and ask for Superintendent Mark Capozza: 724-364-2200

And PA-DOC Deputy Secretary for the Western Region Trevor Wingard: 717.728.4122 ext 4123

Here is a sample script you can use:

“Hello, my name is _______. I am calling to express my concern for the well-being of Akil Johnson, who was attacked yesterday by two COs. Akil needs real medical care, and he should be immediately release back into general population. I am also calling to ask what, if anything, will be done to COs Williamson and Lacey, who attacked Akil while he was handcuffed on camera? [They’ll deflect and say they do not know, etc]. Both COs should be suspended or terminated, or at least disciplined and separated from Akil.”

Thank you to everyone who can call in. When we stood up for our comrade Andre at Smithfield last summer, we got him released and transferred. We can do this again for Akil.

In Struggle,

Outside comrade IJ

Philly Noise Demo Reportback

Submission

Happy New Year Fuck the System!

On NYE in Philly about 20 anarchist gathered for a march and noise demo at the Federal Detention Center Downtown. At the meet up, after an overview of what to expect, what was planned, and flyers of potential chants were handed out, we set off toward the prison. Marching with a banner, we kept it tight and let people in the streets know what we were doing. We walked on the sidewalk until we realized we didn’t need to. A federal building and indigo bike rental kiosk were tagged by the time we arrived at the prison. Once there, someone tagged ‘Burn Prisons’ on the FDC lolol! We lit off fireworks, smoke bombs, banged flags and pots and sang and shouted solidarity to the prisoners inside, and insults to the cops gathered around us. It was really cool this year to interact with those inside, to see them flashing lights and hear them banging on windows. After 30-45 minutes we took our leave, throwing fliers in our wake. The cops, who had started gathering at the prison, followed us. We had planned for a group fare evasion at the subway as our exit, but with the police breathing down our necks we dispersed in the street instead. Eventually we lost the trails of the cops and made our ways home safely. Some of us even had a funny serendipitous group fare evasion with some strangers, who in seeing us not pay decided they wouldn’t pay either! Yay for the spread of anarchy!
Compared to last year we feel a lot has improved. Whereas last year we were rushed out of our meetup by the appearance of a park cop, this time we had a chance to discuss the action together and share supplies. Security felt tighter also, people’s outfits were secretive and no one was taking photos. Also this year we could really feel a shift in group morale. There was a lot more laughter and joy. We though our chants were funnier and more on point (rather than empty flexes). Maybe most importantly we were able to see and be seen by the people locked up, we saw lights and silhouttes in the windows and could hear them clearing lulls in the noise.
The things we wish went different were: our speaker wasn’t loud enough to play music, our dispersal was sloppy (we feel like it is always hard to predict dispersals/exits but could be worthwhile have multiple plans/multiple backup plans and discuss them in advance), and we could have took the streets a little harder. Overall though, we thought it went well.
We hope this report back is helpful in forming even better strategies in the future. It’s cool to reflect on our strengths and weaknesses and make adjustments over the years.

Shout out to the anarchists who were busy wrecking the nazi supporting bar mill creek tavern on nye!

RIP Kitty

Happy 2020 lets fuck shit uP!!




Winter Solstice Card Party for Political Prisoners

from Philly ABC

Join Philly Anarchist Black Cross for a Winter Solstice Card Party on Monday, 12/23, 6:30pm-8:30pm, at A-Space! (4722 Baltimore Ave)

We will send cards and warm wishes to our friends and comrades inside. Maintaining and building relationships with them is the crux of what we do, so we will be sending cards to U.S.-held PPs and POWs. Light refreshments will be provided and folks are welcome to come use the time as a regularly scheduled time to correspond with current penpals inside prison as well.

We will also be mailing birthday cards to those who have birthdays in January: Fran Thompson (3rd), Jeremy Hammond (8th), Abdul Azeez (9th), Sundiata Acoli (13th), Joseph “Joe-Joe” Bowen (15th), and Marius Mason (25th),

Phone Zap for Obadiah Miller

from Twitter


Prison Rebel Birthdays for December

from It’s Going Down

[This post only contains information relevant to Philadelphia and the surrounding area, to read the entire article follow the above link.]

Inspired by the spirit of the Political Prisoners Birthday crew, here’s a short listing of some rebel prisoners who have upcoming birthdays in September. For an an introduction on how to write to prisoners and some things to do and not to do, go here. If you have the time, please also check IWOC’s listing of prisoners facing retaliation for prison strike-related organizing.

Fred “Muhammad” Burton

Fred Burton is one of the Philly 5, a group of men accused of an alleged attack on a police station that left one officer killed. He was sentenced to a life term for murder. Burton has maintained his innocence since his arrest.

Birthday: December 15

Address:

Smart Communications/PA DOC
Fred Burton
AF3896
SCI Somerset
Post Office Box 33028
St Petersburg, Florida
33733
USA

Alejandro Rodriguez-Ortiz

A former Vaughn 17 defendant. While the state has now dropped its attempts to criminalize Alejandro in relation to the uprising, he is facing continued retaliation, as he has been moved out of state to Pennsylvania, where many Vaughn defendants are being held on lockdown indefinitely (via placement on PA’s Restricted Release List) on vague and questionable grounds. More than two years later, these prisoners are still being abused for staying in solidarity with one another against the state.

Birthday: December 17

Address:

Smart Communications / PA DOC
Alejandro Rodriguez-Ortiz – NW2883
SCI Camp Hill
P.O. Box 33028
St. Petersburg, FL 33733

Jonathan Rodriguez

A former Vaughn 17 defendant. While the state has now dropped its attempts to criminalize Jonathan in relation to the uprising, he is facing continued retaliation, as he has been moved to Pennsylvania, where he is being held on lockdown indefinitely (via placement on PA’s Restricted R. More than two years later, these prisoners are still being abused for staying in solidarity with one another against the state.

Birthday: December 31

Address:

Smart Communications / PA DOC
Jonathan Rodriguez – NU0434
SCI Houtzdale
PO Box 33028
St. Petersburg, FL, 33733

Healing & Justice – Honoring Dr. Mutulu Shakur – Philadelphia

from Facebook

Book an appointment for acupuncture, massage or an herbal consultation for yourself or as a gift for someone who deserves it. Through his revolutionary work with Lincoln Detox, Black Acupuncture Advisory Association of North America and the Harlem Institute of Acupuncture, Dr. Shakur utilized acupuncture to not only heal but also empower. In honor of this legacy, licensed acupuncturists, massage therapists and herbalists will come together at Six Fishes Neighborhood Acupuncture to provide care for sliding scale donations of $25- $50.

Donations are tax-deductible & support Dr. Shakur’s legal defense, commissary essentials, and projects promoting justice for the Black community. In solidarity with long-term political prisoner from Philadelphia who is battling cancer, Russell Maroon Shoatz, a portion of proceeds from the event will go to his support fund. Cash is accepted or for a tax deduction, bring check or money order made out to CAD.

Since space is limited, use the form below to schedule an appointment: http://mutulushakur.com/site/2019/11/healing-justice-philadelphia-2019/

[December 7 from 1:00 PM – 6:00 PM at Six Fishes Acupuncture,  Chinese Herbs & Massage 2308 Grays Ferry Ave]

Tagging spree

Submission

We went on a hella tagging spree tonight in preparation for Black Friday. Started at broad and walnut and got all the way up to broad and diamond with 2 cans of paint and a white paint marker. Hit the armed forces recruiting center, a Bank of America, some construction equipment, properties currently being developed, 24 indiego bike tires slashed, and a lot learned and there was much joy taken in simple acts of rebellion. Fuck this colonial holiday, super fuck Black Friday, fuck those who would have us feel shame around mental illness and lack of perceived productivity under this coercive capitalist structure, when the real people who deserve to feel shame are those bulldozing and developing land that used to be wild and beautiful, banks that collaborate with ICE, and fucking army recruiters!
Signed, with all the love in our hearts-

Prison abolitionist queers who will never stop disrupting. Stay sexy, Stay violent, Stay unpredictable