Kirstein Article on F.B.I. Howard Zinn Files for HNN.

HNN has published my article, “The People’s Historian and the F.B.I. Zinn Files,”  that incorporates the recently released F.B.I. Zinn files. The Zinn Files are testimony to the persecution of dissent and free-thinking in this country. This sham of a democracy which Dr Zinn so heroically attempted to improve attempted to destroy him behind his back with accusations of being a communist, a subversive and the like. It is the F.B.I. that is the threat not those who wish to help the helpless and succor to the weak and hungry. The farce of the F.B.I. reaches irrational levels of absurdity whereby Dr Zinn is perceived as a threat to the president. If it were not for the fact we live in the most violent nation on earth, in which the armed police state hounds pacifists, antiwar resisters and civil rights advocates, this would all be a historical lesson of high comedy.

http://www.boingboing.net/images/_default_ZINN.jpg

http://boingboing.net/2010/01/27/howard-zinn-rip.html

The following is from the F.B.I. website as linked above:

On July 30, 2010, the FBI released one file with three sections totaling 423 pages on Howard Zinn, a best selling radical historian, teacher, playwright, and political activist.

Zinn was born in Brooklyn, New York and died at the age of 87 on January 27, 2010. As a young man he worked as a shipyard hand and served in the U. S. military as a bombardier during World War II. Returning from the war, he became involved in a number of left-wing political causes, some of them associated with the activities of the Communist Party of the United States (CPUSA).

In 1949, the FBI opened a domestic security investigation on Zinn (FBI File # 100-360217). The Bureau noted Zinn’s activities in what were called Communist Front Groups and received informant reports that Zinn was an active member of the CPUSA; Zinn denied ever being a member when he was questioned by agents in the 1950s. In the 1960s, the Bureau took another look at Zinn on account of his criticism of the FBI’s civil rights investigations. Further investigation was made when Zinn traveled to North Vietnam with Daniel Berrigan as an anti-war activist. The investigation ended in 1974, and no further investigation into Zinn or his activities was made by the FBI.

100-HQ-360217, Section 1: March 9, 1949 to April 2, 1968, 284 pages

Seventeen pages withheld as duplicative, for referral to another government agency, or because they are classified in their entirety. Redactions were made to protect personal privacy and the identity of sources of information and because material is still classified.

100-HQ-360217, Section 2: June 20, 1969 to August 22, 1974, 119 pages

Redactions were made to protect personal privacy and the identity of sources of information and because material is still classified.

100-HQ-360217, Section 3: August 22, 1974, 20 pages

One redaction was made to protect personal privacy.

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