Department of Defense. "Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC)." 1967.
The Assistant Chief of Staff for Intelligence, Department of
the Army, gratefully acknowledges the assistance of the US Army
Intelligence Command and the Federal Bureau of Investigation in
the preparation of this counter-intelligence study.
Users may submit comments, suggestions, or queries pertaining to
this study to the Assistant Chief of Staff for Intelligence,
Department of the Army, Washington, D. C. 20310, ATTN: DSCC.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
1. Founding and National Headquarters 1
2. Policy Statements 2
3. Organization 3
a. National Leadership 4
b. Finances 5
c. Transportation 5
d. Publications 5
e. World Travel 6
4. Contact with other Organizations 6
5. Support by Communist and New Left Organizations 7
6. Personalities 8
7. Activities 17
The Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) is an
organization which seeks to capitalize on the discontent of
Negroes who want immediate economic and social equality.
Although SNCC was created in 1960 as a nonviolent civil rights
organization concentrating on Negro voter registration campaigns
in the South, by 1965 SNCC had renounced its policy of non-violence
and integration to advocate political and economic power for the Negro
and to agitate against the United States involvement in Vietnam.
This transformation of SNCC accelerated in May 1966, when Stokely
Carmichael became national chairman. That summer Carmichael
popularized his slogan, "Black Power," which to him meant
"bringing this country to its knees" and using "any force necessary"
to attain Negro goals. The switch changed SNCC from the
traditional-type civil rights organization to a militant anti-white
Carmichael and the current SNCC national chairman, H. Rap Brown,
have gained a great deal of notoriety by traveling throughout the
United States and the world preaching hate and openly espousing urban
guerrilla warfare to achieve "Black Power." Although, they
cannot be held responsible for the violence in US cities in the summer
of 1967, they most certainly have made their contribution to civil unrest.
1. FOUNDING AND NATIONAL HEADQUARTERS: In April 1960, a group of Negro
and white college students, meeting in Raleigh, North Carolina, formed
the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee as a vehicle to
coordinate their civil rights activities. At its second meeting,
held in the middle of October 1960, in Atlanta, Georgia, SNCC became
a permanent committee and started an outline for a constitution. SNCC
then stated that its general principle was to be a continued policy of
non-violent pressure to force desegregation. Its national head-quarters
opened at 197 1/2 Auburn Street, N.E., Atlanta, Georgia. Several years
later it moved to 360 Nelson Street, S.W., in Atlanta. As of April
1965, SNCC may have had some 250 field workers, but it was soon forced
to cut that number in half due to financial problems.
2. POLICY STATEMENTS
a. SNCC can no longer be considered a civil rights group. It has become
a racist organization with black supremacy ideals and an expressed
hatred for whites. It employs violent and militant measures which may
be defined as extreme when compared with those of more moderate
groups. Some of its early leaders, such as John Lewis, have had to
step down because of a conflict with the "New Way." In the fall of
1966, a position paper, written by dissident members, clearly showed
that the organization's new "Black Power" philosophy was the product
of months of planning. This policy change came as the result of
internal discussion within the committee over the role of white
workers within the organization. White workers have been released
by SNCC, and the caucasian member in SNCC is almost non-existent
today. Present leaders have proclaimed they have rid themselves of
the white man so that they can truly work for black power. These SNCC
leaders have become so active nationally that they not only represent
the change in SNCC itself but the change in the militant Negro in every
sector of the country. SNCC leaders also claim to represent Negro
discontent with the war in Vietnam and the disproportionate number of
Negroes drafted and serving in the "Racist Imperialist War."
b. The policy of SNCC is best described in some of its earlier
organizational pronouncements and in numerous statements of its
leaders. Early in 1966, a SNCC policy statement provided a basis
for its actions. The following is a synopsis of that statement:
SNCC has the right and responsibility to dissent with U.S. foreign
policy concerning Vietnam; the U.S. has been deceptive in its claims
about the freedom of the Vietnamese and colored people in the Dominican
Republic, the Congo, South Africa, Rhodesia, and in the U.S., itself;
SNCC has been involved in the black people's struggle for liberation
and self-determination in this country for the past five years; SNCC
work has taught that the U.S. government has never guaranteed the
freedom of oppressed citizens; SNCC workers have often been victims
of violence and confinement by U.S. government officials; the murder
of Samuel Young in Tuskeegee is no different than the murder of
peasants in Vietnam; Samuel Young was murdered because U.S. law
is not being enforced; Vietnamese are murdered because the U.S. is
pursuing an aggressive foreign policy in violation of international
law; SNCC recalls the indifference, suspicion, and outright hostility
with which reports of violence have been met in the past by government
officials; elections in this country, in the North as well as the South
are not free; SNCC questions, then, the ability and even the desire of
the U.S. government to guarantee free elections abroad; SNCC sympathizes
with and supports the men in this country who are unwilling to respond
to a military draft; SNCC notes the inconsistency of a supposedly 'free'
society where responsibility to freedom is equated with the
responsibility to lend oneself to military aggression; SNCC asks
where is the draft for the freedom fight in the U.S.; SNCC encourages
those Americans who prefer to use their energy in building democratic
forms within this country and believes that work in the civil rights
movement and with other human relations organizations is a valid
alternative to the draft.
c. In late May 1967, SNCC issued the following policy statement:
"In our staff meeting held during the past week, the organization
voted that the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee is a human
rights organization, interested not only in human rights in the United
States, but throughout the world; that in the field of international
relations, we assert that we encourage and support the liberation
struggles of all people against fascism, exploitation, and oppression.
We see our struggle here in America as an integral part of the
world-wide movement of all oppressed people, such as in Vietnam,
Angola, Mozambique, South Africa, Zimbabwe, and Latin America.
Furthermore, we support the efforts of our brothers in Puerto Rico,
who are presently engaged in a fight for independence and liberation
d. "We shall seek to build a strong nationwide black antidraft program
and movement to include high school students, along with college
students and other black men of draft age. We see on reason for black
men, who are daily murdered physically and mentally in this country, to
go and kill yellow people abroad, who have done nothing to us, and are,
in fact, victims of the same oppression that our brothers in Vietnam
suffer. Our major thrust will be in the building of national freedom
organizations which will deal with all aspects of the problems facing
black people in America. The political objective will manifest itself
in the creation of a viable, independent political force. The economic
objective will be:
(1) To expel the exploiters who presently control our community.
(2) To gain economic control of our communities.
(3) To create an economic system which will be responsible to and
benefit the black community, rather than a few individuals.
e. "Our cultural objective will be:
(1) To destroy the myths and lies propagated by white America
concerning our history in Africa and in this country.
(2) To develop an awareness and appreciation of the beauty of our
thick lips, broad noses, kinky hair, and soul. In obtaining these
objectives, we will work with all other black groups who are fighting
for the same goals."
f. On 1 August 1967, the Detroit News claimed that it received a black
power pamphlet circulated by SNCC, which denied that it printed this
pamphlet; the News stated it had quoted it verbatim. In essence the
pamphlet called for the Negro to fill himself with "hate for all white
things. We must disrupt the white man's system to create our own." The
title of the document published was "We Want Black Power." "We cannot
train an army in the local park, but we can be ready for the final
confrontation with the white man's system. The black man in America
is in a perpetual state of slavery no matter what the white man's
propaganda tells us. We are not alone in this fight, we are a part
of the struggle for self-determination of all black men everywhere."
g. In relation to the recent Arab-Israeli War, SNCC, on 15 August 1967,
charged that Israel was guilty of atrocities during its war with the
Arabs. In its monthly newsletter, it called Israelites, "Zionist
terrorists who deliberately slaughtered and mutilated Arab men,
women and children." It also stated that Israel forced itself into
being in 1947 by parlaying the United Nations votes of the United
States, "White Europeans and Australians," to vote for the Israeli
h. Franklin Alexander of the W.E.B. DuBois Clubs of America (DCA),
although not directly connected with SNCC, has commented on SNCC's
policy with some inside knowledge, although just how much of
Alexander's statement is fact and how much opinion remains uncertain.
In August 1967, he expressed his feeling that the current group
activity under consideration by leadership of SNCC was on "ghetto
guerrilla organizing." This concept produced violent disagreements
in SNCC, but the broad revolution section prevailed in the discussion
and is now dominating SNCC activities. This has caused serious
financial and organizational problems. The main personality among
SNCC leadership stressing this philosophy is Harold Ware, an associate
of Stokely Carmichael. Ware has been strongly influenced by the writings
and discussions of Robert Williams, a Negro expatriate, now residing in
China. Alexander is of the opinion that SNCC could be expected to become
a para-military revolutionary underground organization dedicated to
continuing terrorist activities in the urban centers of the U.S.
a. National Leadership -- The national leadership of SNCC has passed
through the hands of Marion Barry, Charles McDew, John Lewis, Stokely
Carmichael, to H. Rap Brown, the current chairman. Behind these
national leaders were assistants and an Executive Committee of workers,
from which the leaders are chosen. There is also an Adult Advisory
group of the Executive Committee. This Adult Advisory group consists
of people from different movements, organizations, and areas of the
country. Some members are known to the public; some have kept their
association with SNCC secret. This has led to speculation concerning
the true membership of this important group and just what outside
organizations have an influence on SNCC. During its early days,
Martin Luther King was believed to have been a member. Possibly,
this Adult / dvisory group is an amorphic body of no specific or
permanent members, varying in composition from time to time. The
present national officers of SNCC are:
(1) H. Rap Brown, National Chairman
(2) Stanley Leroy Wise, National Executive Secretary
(3) Ralph Featherstone, National Program Director
(4) Ethel Minor, Communications Director of SNCC
(5) James Foreman, International Director of SNCC
(6) George Washington Ware, Program Director of Campus Affairs
(7) Bill Mahoney, SNCC National Press Relations Officer
(1) SNCC claims to be a non-profit organization. As such, it has
purchased automobiles and paid monthly phone bills of $1,000,
salaries for up to 150 people and numerous other expenses. With
the adoption of its militant policy, SNCC lost much of its northern
financial backing and faced a financial crisis.
(2) SNCC had originally set a dues system to obtain needed finances,
but this has apparently fallen by the wayside. It has solicited
contributions by mail and personal contact. Its aid may now be
coming from fund-raising affairs, from friends who seek contributions
and hold parties to raise money in the North, from a touring SNCC
group of Freedom Singers who appear at benefits on SNCC's behalf, from
the sale of recordings and Freedom songbooks, and from benefits by
entertainers such as Pete Seeger, Dick Gregory, Harry Belafonte, and
Peter, Paul, and Mary. Stokely Carmichael received payments of $1000
to $3000 for speaking engagements at various colleges. SNCC has
received funds from the Southern Regional Council and Southern
Conference Educational Fund; however, it still remains in financial
difficulty because of its loss in popularity among northern whites.
SNCC will possibly have to find financial aid from new sources in
order to alleviate its current financing shortcomings.
c. Transportation -- Transportation has been a prime necessity for
SNCC organization and leaders. It set up the "Sojourner Motor Fleet"
in Atlanta, Georgia, to provide automotive transportation for its
workers. Air travel has been on commercial flights and is frequently
used as its national leaders travel throughout the country for meetings
and speech making jaunts.
d. SNCC Publications
(1) The Student Voice was first issued in June 1960. It had been
SNCC's intermittent official publication, although it has not appeared
since late 1966. The Student Voice is a corporate organization and
owns its own equipment. In order to defray some expenses, it has taken
on some commercial printing. It has also published a history of the
(2) The Movement, a monthly newspaper, was published by SNCC in
California until 1966. The publishers separated from SNCC at that
time, but maintained their continued support of SNCC policies. In June
1967, they stated they full supported the SNCC "Black Power"
(3) Several chapters of SNCC and Friends of SNCC have also published
newsletters and pamphlets, such as, The Drummer in Cleveland, and The
Voice of Washington SNCC in Washington, D. C. Posters, fliers, and
circulars have also appeared at SNCC pickets, demonstrations and
e. World Travel
(1) SNCC leaders and their aides travel throughout the world to attend
meetings and give speeches. These meetings vary from groups of
International Civil Rights workers to communist sponsored meetings
and to lectures on revolution.
(2) Charles McDew, of SNCC, has traveled to Mexico where he may be
in contact with many persons in Mexico with Communist backgrounds.
In the fall of 1966, Vernon Crutchfield, a field worker for SNCC,
stated that he and other representatives of SNCC made an all-expense
paid trip to Russia, and that white there he was offered a free
scholarship to attend a Russian school. Ralph Featherstone, of the
Executive Committee of SNCC, visited Japan to lecture and visit the
Hiroshima City celebration in the fall of 1966. In the spring of 1965,
John Lewis made a trip to Africa on what he called a "Mission of
Learning" and to improve relations between the liberation movement of
Africa and the civil rights struggle in this country. On 13 July 1967,
SNCC announced that James Foreman was to leave for Russia. In 1965,
Stokely Carmichael made an expense-free trip to Guinea with ten other
SNCC workers. This trip was arranged by Harry Belafonte. There they
took lessons in revolution from President Sekou Toure, the pro-Communist
president of Guinea. In 1967, Carmichael also made his well publicized
trip to England, Cuba, North Vietnam, and Algeria, spreading his words
of hate and attracting aid from foreign sources.
4. CONTACT WITH OTHER ORGANIZATIONS
a. SNCC has had contact with other civil rights and nationalist
organizations. During its early days it worked through the Council
of Federated Organizations (COFO), with the Southern Christian
Leadership Conference (SCLC), the National Association for the
Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), the Urban League (UL),
the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE), the Southern Conference
Educational Fund, Inc. (SCEF), and the Southern Student Organizing
Committee (SSOC). In early 1966, SNCC started a chapter of the Black
Panther Party (BPP) in Lowndes County, Alabama, intended as a political
civil rights group and a third party slate. The BPP has Maxwell
Stanford, head of Revolutionary Action Movement (RAM), as a member.
Two of SNCC's well-known leaders were members of the Nonviolent
Action Group (NVA). Franklin Alexander, a member of the Du Bois
Clubs of America (DCA), worked closely with SNCC members in the
riots on 17 May 1967, in Houston, Texas. DCA is a front organization
of the Communist Party, USA (CPUSA). The Puerto Rican Independence
Movement (MPI) has made an agreement with SNCC, according to Ponce
Directore Jenaro Rentas Rodriguez, to create riots and racial problems
in New York and other U.S. cities through the coordinated efforts of
Puerto Ricans and Negroes. This agreement was supposedly made prior to
Stokely Carmichael's recent visit to the Latin American Solidarity
Organization (LASO), in Havana, Cuba. Stokely Carmichael has also
conferred several times with members of black national groups, such
as, the Nation of Islam (NOI) and RAH.
b. SNCC's militant attitude has aggravated the leaders of the moderate
civil rights group like SCLC. SCLC is lead by Martin Luther King, Jr.,
who in September 1966, said he could not countenance the current
violent approach resorted to by SNCC and hoped he would not have to
take a public stand against SNCC. Attempts have been made to reconcile
the two groups. On 13-14 June 1967, a secret meeting was held with
SNCC and CORE representing militant groups, and SCLC, NAACP, and UL
representing the moderates. Some progress was made and common goals
set. Relations were soon to be strained again, however, by the
continued militant activities of Brown and Carmichael.
c. The increasingly militant policies of SNCC have infuriated
right-wing organizations throughout the country. The Minutemen
delivered an ultimatum to SNCC headquarters in July 1967, for
Stokely Carmichael and others to "Vacate Georgia forthwith" under
pain of violent reprisal. The American Nazi Party has held numerous
counter-demonstrations at SNCC rallies. In general, there is the ever
present danger of extended violence in the confrontations of SNCC
with groups of the radical right.
5. SUPPORT BY COMMUNIST AND NEW LEFT ORGANIZATIONS: There is no
evidence to prove that SNCC is a communist front organization.
There is ample evidence indicating communist support and infiltration,
however, since SNCC first came into being in the early 1960's. SNCC
has always Claimed that it does not concern itself with the outside
interests of its workers, nor does it care if a member is a communist.
SNCC states its only concern as the belief and intention of its members
to work for civil rights. Communist aid does not represent total
alignment and complete collaboration of SNCC with the CPUSA. It
does mean that the communists do support and influence SNCC activities
to a limited extent. In November 1962, Dan Rubin, CPUSA Youth Leader,
New York, stated that the CPUSA would establish groups of young people
in the North who would give aid to SNCC in the South. Ben Davis,
National Secretary, CPUSA, in May 1963, pointed out tremendous work
done by the "Student Nonviolent League" and indicated "we" should
understand the importance of getting "our own people" into work of
this kind in the South. Carl Bloice, of the Youth Commission of the
Northern California District of the CPUSA, spent time with SNCC, and
indicated that among SNCC leadership, most of the Marxist classics
were familiar books. In 1963, SNCC received checks from or through
individuals with CPUSA affiliations. Adult Member, Executive Committee,
SNCC, was a member of the CPUSA in 1953. Charles McDew, who resigned as
Chairman of SNCC in June 1963, and went to Mexico, is described as
knowing many persons in Mexico and the U. S. who were of communist
background who apparently does not care to hold title position with
SNCC in Atlanta, is described by newspapers as a Field Secretary
for SNCC and is considered by Atlanta Police to be third in command
of SNCC after the Chairman and Executive Secretary. As of January
30, 1963, was a member of the Youth Club, an affiliate of the CPUSA
of Eastern Pennsylvania and Delaware (CPEPD). SNCC has received
financial support from SCEF, the Louis M. ?? Foundation (known to give aid to
communist front groups), and the Women's Peace and Unity Club.
Ella J. Baker, Adult Member, SNCC Executive Committee, has
associated with individuals known to be CPUSA members. Information
received in mid-December 1963, revealed that John Lewis was a member
of the Fair Play for Cuba Committee. As of June 29, 1963, was a member
of the CPUSA, in New York City. ardent supporter of SNCC, was a
CPUSA member. of Atlanta, another ardent SNCC supporter, was identified
as a CPUSA member in December 1952.
a. STOKELY CARMICHAEL
(1) Stokely Carmichael, while on the Meredith Freedom March in
Mississippi in June 1966, coined the slogan "Black Power," which
shortly afterwards split the civil rights movement into two camps,
moderate and extreme. He and H. Rap Brown have preached violence
throughout the nation. In the summer of 1967, he traveled to Havana,
Cuba, and Hanoi, North Vietnam, to take part in communist activities
and attack "white racism" in the U.S.
(2) Carmichael was born in Trinidad, West Indies, on 29 June 1941.
His father was a native of the British West Indies and his mother
was Panamanian. His family moved to Bronx, New York, in 1952.
Carmichael became a US citizen on April 27, 1953, by derivation
from the naturalization of his father. he graduated from the Bronx
School of Science in New York City, in June 1960. While in high
school he was a member of a group that seemed unusually devoted to
left wing activities. Eugene Dennis, Jr., son of the former General
Secretary of the CPUSa, was a close friend and fellow high school
student of Carmichael's in the Bronx. Young Dennis played a prominent
role in the founding of the DCA. In Carmichael's senior year, he and
some classmates went to Washington, D. C., to picket the House
Committee on Un-American Activities. he later attended Howard
University in Washington, D. C., where he obtained a degree in
philosophy in 1964 While at Howard he joined the Nonviolent Action
Group, an affiliate of SNCC. In June 1961, he participated in freedom
rides and experienced the first of his numerous arrests Two years
after graduation from Howard he became chairman of SNCC. In this
position from the spring of 1966, until May 1967, he traveled
throughout the United States speaking at churches, high schools,
colleges, and street rallies. Carmichael claims he established his
idea of "Black Power" from a book he considers his "bible," The
Wretched of the Earth, by the West Indian Negro, Frantz Fanon.
His recent activities and statements show his concentration on
preaching violence and hate, and how violence usually follows his
(a) On 17 July 1966, Carmichael told a large rally in Philidelphia,
Pa., of a plan to oust all white businessmen and landlords from
Negro areas of the city. According to Carmichael, cooperatives will
be formed to buy out white businesses and apartment houses in the
Negro sections -- "We will force them to sell to us by moving out of
their apartments and boycotting their businesses."
(b) During his speech in Detroit, Michigan, on July 30, 1966, he
urged Negroes to stop begging white people for what "we deserve by
birth." He also stated he had experienced so much law and order in
this country that he now wanted to try "a little taste of chaos."
(c) On 2 August 1966, Carmichael appeared in the Vine City area of
Atlanta, Georgia, and shouted "Black Power" when police were
attempting to arrest a Negro for a minor traffic offense. A riot
resulted. On August 8, eight members of SNCC were arrested when
they disrupted traffic as they picketed the Atlanta Housing Authority.
(d) Carmichael at the Mount Morris Presbyterian Church in Harlem in
New York City, on 29 August 1966, said, "In Cleveland they're building
stores with no windows. All brick, I don't know what they think they
will accomplish. It just means we have to move from Molotov cocktails
(e) In Selma, Alabama on 5 November 1966, Carmichael was arrested
when he attempted to incite a riot at city hall during a campaign
rally for Black Panther Party candidates.
(f) On 24 May 1967, Carmichael told some 7,000 UCLA students that,
for negroes, the war in vietnam is a matter of survival rather than
morality. He said that more than 30 per cent of the fighting force in
Vietnam is Negro, whereas only 10 per cent of the US population is
Negro. A Washington Post article stated that recent statistics show
that Negroes comprise about 23 per cent of the fighting force in
Vietnam. Carmichael is "against coalition at this time because it will
not benefit the black man...we will not be defined by a white society.
We will struggle to create our own terms and have them recognized."
(g) On 11 June 1967, Carmichael was arrested in Prattville, Alabama,
for disturbing the peace after an incident in which police claim an
aggressive Negro gathering harangued and fired on police and white
passers-by. Police quoted Carmichael as saying, "We came here to tear
this town up, and we're going to tear it up." Carmichael led the
gathering and later stated that the trouble was started by
Klansmen and police brutality.
(h) During racial violence in Atlanta, Ga., on 18 June 1967,
Stokely Carmichael appeared on the scene accompanied by a group
of individuals, some of whom were connected with SNCC. Carmichael
immediately began to harrass the police and was finally arrested
for disorderly conduct -- failure to obey an officer to move on.
After the violence on June 19, Carmichael, who was out of jail on
bond, held a press conference and announced that a protest meeting
would be held at St. Joseph's Baptist Church that night. At this
meeting he attacked the Atlanta police force and incited the crowd
with inflammatory statements. Further rioting resulted.
(i) Stokely Carmichael reached a new height of international fame
when he travelled in the summer of 1967, to the Cuban held Latin
American Solidarity Organization Conference (LASO). On his way to
Cuba he stopped in Britain. There Carmichael allegedly said, "If
the British did not accept our principles, I would burn down their
homes and factories." While at the LASO Conference, he said,
quoting from Major Ernesto Che Guevara, the Cuban guerrilla leader,
"Hatred is an element of the struggle, transforming (man) into an
effective violent, selective and cold killing machine." In reference
to Guevara on guerrilla warfare, Carmichael said, "You are an
inspiration not only to black people inside the United States, but
to the liberation struggle around the world. Please keep on fighting,
you are helping to inspire us. Do not despair, my comrade, we shall
overcome." When asked whether Black Power can be equated to communism,
he answered: "Communism can be many things -- Russian, Czech,
Yugoslav, Cuban. The system we like best is the Cuban." About the
CPUSA, he said, "There are no proletarians in the U.S. Communist
Party. It is the party of the rich." He said, "Forty per cent of the
troops in Vietnam are Negro, and some good may come of it because
when they come back they will be trained to kill in the streets."
The American Negro's battle, he said, must be fought on two fronts:
"The fight against racism and the fight against capitalism. Racism
is a result of capitalism." According to Reuters, Carmichael
envisions the possible assassination of President Johnson and
British Prime Minister Wilson as acts of vengeance for the murder of
Negro leaders. Carmichael said his three greatest heroes were
assassinated black nationalist leader Malcolm X, Ernesto (Che)
Guevara, and Mao Tse-tung.
(j) Because of these and similar statements, the US State Department
is considering revoking Carmichael's passport. Since his stay in
Cuba, Carmichael has travelled to North Vietnam. Carmichael's draft
status is 4-F as of March 13, 1967. Previously he had been classified
1-Y because of a psychiatric test showing "chronic schizophrenic with
psychopathic, pseudoneurotic and paranoid trends."
(k) In May, 1967, Carmichael relinquished his National Chairman
position in SNCC ostensibly to return to Negro problems as a field
worker; however, he has remained in the lime-light and has not
returned to field work in Washington, D. C., as he indicated at
the time of his resignation.
b. RAP BROWN
(1) In taking office as Stokely Carmichael's successor as National
Chairman of SNCC, Brown stated that he hoped he would not be as
publicly prominent as Carmichael. In an apparent effort to stress
that he was as militant as Carmichael, he stated that he couldn't
count the number of times he has been arrested and stated that he
faces a trial in Selma, Alabama, on morals charges. Carmichael also
assured news reporters that Brown was "a bad man."
(2) Brown's real name is Hubert Geroid Brown. He is reported to have
acquired the nickname "Rap" during his early days as a civil rights
worker when his fiery speeches caused audiences to shout, "Rap it to
(3) Brown was born on October 4, 1943, in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. he
attended Southern University for two years, dropping out in 1962,
because "they couldn't teach me anything." Due to flat feet and
torn ligaments, Brown failed to pass physical examinations and
was classified 1-Y by his draft board. From 1962 to 1963, Brown
worked with Carmichael in a group called the Nonviolent Action
Group, which was based at Howard University in Washington, D. C.
Following this Brown and Carmichael worked with SNCC in Mississippi
and Lowndes County, Alabama. From December 1966 to May 1967, he
served as SNCC's Alabama Project Director. In May 1967, Brown was
designated as SNCC National Chairman, succeeding Carmichael.
(4) Brown's activities and speeches have been numerous. During the
summer of 1967, Brown traveled widely, making many speeches, inciting
violence, and spreading hate.
(a) On 9 June 1967, Brown and other leading SNCC personalities held
a press conference in Chicago. They indicated that SNCC would launch
a nation-wide protest against the drafting of Negroes and would
instruct Negroes on how to avoid the military draft. Black Draft
Workshops were held in Chicago several days later.
(b) Brown, in Prattville, Alabama, on 11 June 1967, said "We
recognize and accept yesterday's action by racist white America
as a declaration of war...We are calling for full retaliations from
the black community across America."
(c) On 14 June 1967, Brown spoke in Dayton, Ohio, on the request of
a known CPUSA member from 1946 through 1948. After Brown's speech,
groups of Negro youths caused disturbances there. On 15 June 1967,
Brown, still in Dayton, called for massive civil disobediance and
"damn the laws of the United States." On this same date Brown also
turned up in riot-torn Cincinnati and told an audience that "SNCC
has declared war."
(d) Brown was the featured speaker at a meeting is Houston, Texas,
on June 19. The meeting was held to protest charges filed against
five Texas Southern University students. Of particular interest was
Brown's statement about the possible ways Negro women could serve.
He mentioned, as an example, that the white "Boss" could "get his
bacon and eggs with arsenic instead of salt." With specific reference
to Houston, Brown stated that it was necessary that SNCC obtain the
full cooperation of the Negro community to organize a "set up" in
Houston similar to that which had been used in Cincinnati. He
insisted that this was a "must" and could not be delayed. He also
told them to arm themselves and that they could possibly take over
Minutemen caches to aid in their armament. After the meeting had
been in progress for some time, all news reporters and white people
were requested to leave. Following their departure, Brown lectured on
rioting. At the outset of a riot, Brown instructed, the city should be
"hit" in the main business area. He explained that the police would
concentrate on this central area. Then, simultaneous outbreaks in
scattered ghetto areas would cause the police to be spread so thin
as to become ineffective. Brown also urged that Negroes be trained
to turn on fire hydrants in order to interfere with the use of
high-pressure hoses to disperse rioters. Those present were also
encouraged by Brown to buy firearms and ammunition. Finally, Brown
counseled that rioters should dress in regulation army uniforms or
fatigue clothes when the National Guard or other troops are called
in. This attire, he pointed out, would confuse the soldiers and enable
the rioters to gain possession of jeeps, which are often equipped
with machine guns.
(e) At a later speech at SNCC headquarters in Washington, D. C.,
Brown said that Negroes will get home rule in Washington, "and if
it must be gotten by going into the streets, that will be dictated
by Lyndon Baines Johnson." He repeatedly said that if violence
erupts, it will be the fault of the white community. He did not
say how SNCC would get home rule but, that it will form "freedom
organizations" to apply pressure on Congress. Concerning the
resorting to arms, he said, "If it comes to the point that black
people must have guns, we will have means and ways to obtain those
arms." he accused the white power structure of "escalating genocide"
against the Negroes. Brown said that it was the policy of SNCC to
conceal the assignment of its workers when some asked him about the
whereabouts of past National Chairman Stokely Carmichael.
(f) On June 23, 1967, Brown held a press conference at Los Angeles.
Brown made anti-Vietnam War statements and wanted Negro soldiers out
of the war and sent home to "fight the real war."
(g) Cambridge, Maryland, for several years has experienced racial
violence, the most recent of which, according to local and state
officials, was caused by Brown. The second ward in Cambridge is a
Negro area, and since 1963 violence between second ward Negroes
and the white community has occurred frequently. Latest violence
erupted over a controversy concerning the predominately Negro Pine
Street Elementary School. On 24 July 1967, Brown told Cambridge
Negroes, "You should burn that school down and then go take over
the honkie's school." "Honky" is a SNCC created word for whites.
He told the crowd that "if America don't come `round, we got to
burn it down. You better get some guns, brother," he said. "The
only thing the honky respects is a gun. You give me a gun and
tell me to shoot my enemy, I might shoot Ladybird." Cambridge
officials charged that Brown's statements caused the following
violence. Brown later declared that what he said at Cambridge
was no different from what he had told black people everywhere.
"I was just instructing my brothers what they had to do to gain
respect. Look, we stand on the eve of a black revolution. If you
tell any bit of truth about the honky, it is inflammatory." Until
Cambridge, Brown had been advocating defensive measures by the
Negro. After the Cambridge riots, Brown declared, "Man, Cambridge
was beautiful and we're going to see more of it." This statement
and later racial disturbances indicate SNCC's departure from
defensive to offensive measures. Brown was arrested at National
Airport in Northern Virginia by the FBI and turned over to the
local authorities in Alexandria, Va. William M. Kunstler of New
York was Brown's lawyer at this time. Brown was held on $10,000
bond awaiting extradition proceedings. While at his arraignment
he said, "If they can afford a Detroit in Alexandria, I'm
prepared to give it to them." His followers continued, "We're
going to take the word back to D.C." In a mimeographed statement
distributed to newsmen at the Alexandria Courthouse, Brown declared,
"I consider myself neither morally nor legally bound to obey laws
made by a body in which I have no representation. Do not deceive
yourself into believing that penalties will deter men from the
course they believe is right. We stand on the eve of a black
revolution." During the trouble in Cambridge, Brown said to
400 cheering listeners, "get your guns...if you gotta die,
wherever you go, take some of them with you. I don't care if
we have to burn him down or run him out, you gotta take over
those stores, gotta take your freedom."
(h) Brown was held in Federal Detention House, New York City,
on weapons charges, on 19 August 1967, and on the following day
repeated his call to American Negroes to "Arm yourselves...Freedom
is yet to come." In a statement issued from his call, Brown said
his confinement will not "rebuild Detroit or save America from
its due fate." Kunstler. Brown's attorney, told newsmen on 20
August that SNCC has been unable to meet Brown's bail, although
the organization has raised about $20,000 in cash, bonds, and
bankbooks. Kunstler said four bail bondsmen had refused to put
up $25,000 bail money for Brown. Brown's detention prevented him
from appearing at rallies in Cincinnati and Baton Rouge, La.
Leonard Ball, SNCC Chairman in Cincinnati, said the rally there
was a success eve without Brown. A county policeman who attended
the rally, from which newsmen were barred, said many people left
when they learned Brown would not appear. Kunstler, read a statement
from Brown on the 20 August. It charged that Brown was a "political
prisoner." "If it takes imprisonment or even death to expose America
for what it is, then this is my destiny..." Brown said. "To all black
brothers and sisters across America who are caught behind enemy lines:
I say the fight has not yet matured. Arm yourselves, for freedom is
yet to come." Brown signed his statement, "Yours in Rebellion,"
Kunstler said Floyd McKissick, had joined him as an attorney
working for Brown's release. Brown was released from jail on 22
August after his bail was reduced from $25,000 to $15,000. SNCC
quickly produced a check for the $12,500 it had raised and another
for $2500 from a New Yorker identified only as Robert Langston.
(i) On 10 September 1967, H. Rap Brown spoke at Lincoln High School
in East St. Louis, Illinois. Following his typical speech of hate and
violence, unruly crowds formed and fires, window breaking, and
sporadic gun fire occurred.
c. OTHER NOTABLE SNCC PERSONALITIES:
(1) JOHN ROBERT LEWIS -- Lewis was born 21 March 1940, at Troy,
Alabama. He was educated at the American Baptist Theological
Seminary, Nashville, Tennessee, from 1957-1961, and at Fisk
University, Nashville, from 1961-1963. He replaced Charles
McDew as Executive Chairman of SNCC on 15 June 1965. He was
arrested ten times between 20 February 1961 and 11 January
1962, for his participation in civil rights activities.
Lewis made a trip to Africa on what he called "a mission
of learning, or an attempt to cement the relation between
the liberation movement of Africa and the civil rights
struggle in this country." He has since left SNCC because
of its increased militancy.
(2) STANLEY LEROY WISE -- Wise was born on 12 June 1942, in
Charlotte, North Carolina, and attended Howard University.
He has been with SNCC for several years as an organizer. In
May 1967, he was elected National Executive secretary, the
second highest position in SNCC. He accompanied Carmichael
during his Negro college tours in March and April 1967, and
when white newsmen questioned Carmichael, he referred them
to Wise. Wise also had accompanied Lewis to Europe in April
1966, to raise funds.
(3) PALPH FEATHERSTONE -- Ralph Featherstone, the National
Program Director for SNCC, is a former Washington, D.C., school
teacher and SNCC field secretary. He became a member of the SNCC
Central Committee in 1966. He was born on 26 May 1937, in
Washington, D.C. He was active in field work in Alabama and
Mississippi, and worked as a radio announcer at one time in
Atlanta, Georgia. He was a member of the National Committee to
Abolish the House Un-American Activities Committee, a communist
front group. He made a trip to Japan in the fall of 1966, with
Professor Howard Zinn of Boston University, to make lectures and
(4) JAMES RUFUS FOREMAN -- Foreman, one-time National Executive
Secretary, is now the International Director of SNCC. He was born
in Chicago, Illinois, on 4 November 1928. He attended the University
of Southern California in 1952, and received his BA degree from
Roosevelt University in Chicago in 1957. He has been very active
in demonstrations, has been arrested a number of times, and has
had contact with communists both here and abroad.
(5) CLEVELAND L. SELLERS, J R. -- Sellers was born on 8 November.
1944, in Denmark, South Carolina. He was National Program Director
of SNCC, third highest office until May 1967. He attended Howard
University. In 1964, he worked for SNCC as a field worker in the
Mississippi voter registration. He travelled with Carmichael in
early 1967. He rejected the draft in May 1967, when called for
(6) GEORGE WASHINGTON WARE -- Ware who is presently Program Director
of Campus Affairs for SNCC, was arrested in Nashville on 22 August
1967, on a Tennessee sedition charge. He was taken to jail to await
grand jury action and was held on $10,000 bail. Ware denied his
guilt, but said he favored violence, if necessary, to gain Negro
power. Ware was released on 25 August 1967, when his bail was
provided by Reverend Andrew N. White.
(7) IVANHOE GAYLORD DONALDSON -- Donaldson was made a member of
SNCC's Central Committee in May 1966, and in September 1966, he
was made the New York field secretary. He was born on 17 October
1941, in New York City and attended Michigan State University. In
1962, he became active in civil rights in Mississippi.
(8)COURTLAND VERNON COX -- cox was born on 17 January 1941, in New
York City. He attended Howard University with Carmichael and both
his parents were from the British West Indies. He invented the "Black
Panther" Label for SNCC's party in Alabama and was put on SNCC's
Central Committee. He substituted for Carmichael in May 1967.
(9) WALTER LEON JENKINS -- In August 1967, Jenkins was arrested by
the Baton Rouge police and booked on charges of inciting arson,
simple battery, and public intimidation. He had been active at a
Negro rally at the Capitol Building in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, on
20 August 1967. He is reportedly a leader of the Black Advancement
League of Baton Rouge, which is associated with SNCC. In the past
he was associated with NAACP but believes that its methods are
outdated. It was later revealed by him that he has been in the
employ of CORE, under the name of Billy Brooks. Records later showed
that Billy Brooks has a police record in several different towns.
(10) WILLIE RICKS -- Ricks, Known as Brown's "Minister of Defense,"
Showed up in Dayton, Ohio just before Negro violence erupted on 14
June 1967. After a meeting there, Ricks was quoted as saying that
he was in Dayton to "make white men get on their knees." He has also
been at a number of different demonstrations including one in
Washington, D.C., at the South African Embassy.
(11) CHARLES MCDEW -- McDew is a past National Chairman of SNCC
who has been involved in many sit-in demonstrations in the South.
He was identified as having had extensive contact with communists
in the US and Mexico. He left for Mexico after his term of office to
live among a colony of leftists.
(12) REVEREND FREDERICK D. KIRKPATRICK -- Kirkpatrick is the leader
of the recently formed SNCC Chapter at Texas Southern University
(TSU) and has likened President Johnson to Hitler -- "Hilter had
his gas chambers for Jews, and President Johnson has his Vietnam
for Negroes." Kirpatrick was a leader of the SNCC demonstrations
in early 1967 against the University's failure to renew the
contract of Mack Jones, Political Science instructor and faculty
advisor for the TSU SNCC chapter. This demonstration turned into
violence resulting in some arrests.
(13) BILL MAHONEY -- Mahoney has been acting as SNCC's National
Press Relations Officer. He was a friend of Carmichael's at Howard
University and was active in the Nonviolent Action Group.
(14) VERNON CRUTCHFIELD -- Crutchfield was a field worker for SNCC
in Arkansas and stated that he and other representatives of SNCC
made an all-expense paid trip to Russia in 1966. While in Russia,
he was offered a free scholarship to attend a Soviet school. He may
have left SNCC as of 21 September 1966.
(15) MARION BARRY -- Marion Barry was the first National Chairman of
SNCC. After leaving this position he became the director of the
Washington, D. C. chapter of SNCC. He is no longer the D.C. director
of SNCC, but still is quite active in such projects as Pride, Inc.
He has obtained a degree of national prominence.
7. ACTIVITIES: In 1960, SNCC served as a coordinating body for civil
rights information and assisted in organizing joint activities of
civil rights groups. SNCC then became actively involved in the voter
registration and direct-action civil rights campaigns in the South
from 1961 to 1964. In 1965 it became more militant, shifting some
emphasis from the South to the North and voicing opinions regarding
US foreign policy.
a. Civil Rights Activity, 1961-1964.
(1) In August 1961, SNCC moved into Pike County, Mississippi, and
opened the first voter-registration school for Negroes in the South.
The school was supplemented with direct-action movements, including
sit-ins, sign-ins, and marches, SNCC also provided schooling for
those students who were expelled when they refused to obey a school
directive against participation in demonstrations in McComb,
(2) In 1962, SNCC continued its voter-registration projects in
Mississippi during the summer months. It received not only physical
but economic opposition. SNCC solicited goods for the needy from
northern colleges students.
(3) In 1963, SNCC joined other groups in COFO to carry out civil
rights projects. The main single activity of SNCC in 1963, however,
was the organization of Selma, Alabama, for voter registration. On
the national level, John Lewis, then national chairman of SNCC,
delivered an aggressive speech in Washington, D. C., denouncing
proposed civil rights legislation as inadequate.
(4) In 1964, SNCC played a primary role in the Mississippi Summer
Project -- a statewide voter-registration campaign among Negroes
aimed at education and job-training. An estimated 900 volunteers
assisted in this project. It was at this time that Stokely Carmichael
emerged on the scene. He was made SNCC field director in the
Mississippi Delta area. Some 200 volunteers remained in Mississippi
at the end of that summer and began the Mississippi Freedom Project.
In August 1964, members of SNCC aided the Mississippi Freedom
Democratic Party, went to the Democratic National Convention,
and unsuccessfully attempted to have the Mississippi delegation
integrated. In September 1964, SNCC's young leaders began identifying
themselves with the leadership of the emerging new nations of Arica
and other underdeveloped parts of the world.
b. POLITICAL ORGANIZING, 1965 -- In 1965, SNCC continued its
activities in the rural South and also moved into the Northern cities.
In June 1965, approximately 100 college students recruited throughout
the U.S. by SNCC went to Washington, D.C., to participate in a
lobbying attempt to get the Mississippi Congressmen unseated.
SNCC along with DCA and the SDS, sponsored a demonstration in
Washington in early August 1965. This demonstration included
picketing the White House, as well as conducting workshops on
Vietnam, the draft, Puerto Rico, and South Africa. Some demonstrators
were arrested when they tried to enter the Capitol grounds. In the
summer of 1965, SNCC, under the guidance of Carmichael, helped to
organize the Lowndes County Freedom Organization in the Black Belt
voting district in Alabama. Negro voter registration rose to
approximately 2,000. SNCC later decided to form a separate political
party in Lowndes County and in six nearby counties. In September 1965,
SNCC issued a 50-page report, in which it sharply criticized the U.S.
Office of Education's program for desegregating Southern schools.
c. PROTEST ACTIVITY, 1966
(1) Vietnam Protests -- In January 1966, John Lewis, then the National
Chairman of SNCC, issued a statement condemning US policy in Vietnam
and urging all Americans to use any method to avoid the draft. When
Julian Bond, a SNCC member and an elected delegate to the House of
Representatives of Georgia, publically agreed with this, he was
refused his seat. This led to demonstrations and publicity.
Throughout 1966, SNCC took part in numerous demonstrations
against US action in Vietnam, and SNCC representatives, in
speeches at conferences and before college groups across the
country, denounced US participation in the war. At the XIIth
Army Corps Headquarters, Atlanta, Georgia, a SNCC-led demonstration
against the Vietnam War in August 1966, erupted into violence and
twelve SNCC demonstrators were arrested.
(2) President's Conference on Civil Rights -- After Carmichael's
election to the office of SNCC National Chairman, he rejected an
invitation to a White House Conference on Civil Rights. He claimed
that the conference was merely for propaganda purposes and not
really a serious attempt to insure constitutional rights of
"black Americans." SNCC also came out at this time against
the 1966 Civil Rights bill and called it a "sham," declaring
that legislators were voting for the "hypocrisy of President
Johnson and his Administration."
(3) Mississippi March -- When Meredith was shot on his
Mississippi Freedom March on 6 June 1966, a manifesto was
signed by civil rights leaders, including SNCC, calling on
the President for massive civil rights reforms. It was during
this march that Carmichael began to popularize his call for
(4) Chicago -- Chicago was selected as the site for a pilot
project for SNCC to put its "Black Power" doctrines to work.
The plan was to get the black ghettos of the city under Negro
control in political, economic, and industrial affairs. A
Chicago Coordination Committee for Black Power was set up
in the latter part of 1966 to form a loose amalgamation,
generally composed of SNCC, CORE, Deacons for Defense and
Justice, and Associated Community Teams. This was to be an
"action group" that would spread the truth about Negro
treatment. Demonstrations were held and pamphlets circulated.
(5) General Election in Alabama -- SNCC activity in Alabama in
1966 was mainly centered around the elections of that year.
SNCC sponsored slates of candidates as a test run of "Black
Power" politics. SNCC candidates were defeated.
(6) Miscellaneous Activities -- SNCC has also engaged in
demonstrations, boycotts, sit-ins, marches, and other
activities throughout the country. SNCC in Washington,
D.C., held a bus boycott of the D.C. transit system for
one day and held a sit-in at the South African Embassy.
SNCC also had several representatives at the Youth Seminar on
Racialism held in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, 27-30 April 1966,
where SNCC made a special plea for the plight of the American
d. STEPS TOWARD "BLACK POWER," 1967 -- At a national meeting in
December 1966, SNCC promoted national anti=draft programs and
regional and national anti-draft conferences. SNCC also agreed
to set up additional freedom organizations similar to the Lowndes
County Freedom Organization, but not to restrict their activities
to voter registration. In January 1967, a joint communique was
issued by SNCC and the Movimiento Pro Independencia de Puerto
Rico (Puerto Rico Independence Movement) (MPI). This communique
called for improved housing conditions, and for Puerto Rican
independence. It affirmed the need for a joint struggle against
the "oppression" inflicted upon the Negroes and Puerto Ricans.
In March 1967, following Adam Clayton Powell's unseating in the
U.S. House of Representatives, SNCC announced that it would campaign
for Powell's re-election. Carmichael claimed that it was a white
man's plot to break up the Negroes when they wanted to run James
Meredith against Powell and that this would become an international
issue that will affect the whole world. In March 1967, SNCC held a
national conference in Nashville, Tennessee, which placed major
emphasis on peace-related workshops. SNCC also took a leading
part in the Spring Mobilization Committees that held demonstrations
in New York and San Francisco on 15 April 1967. During the period
20-23 July 1967, SNCC attended an all-Negro National Conference on
Black Power, in Newark, New Jersey. One of the resolutions adopted
called for a black militia to train black families in all aspects
of self defense and racial survival. Another resolution denounced
the Selective Service and the Federal Government and supported a
"Hell no, we won't go" attitude toward the draft.
The growing popularity of H. Rap Brown, Stokely Carmichael, and
SNCC indicates a changing temper in Negro racist agitation. More
and more Negroes are accepting the SNCC policy of violence and
destruction of established social order in the U. S. Recent
utterances of SNCC leaders call for Negroes to arm themselves
in preparation for guerrilla warfare to overthrow the "imperialist"
government of the United States. They seek to destroy the present
American economic, political, and social systems in a SNCC-defined
attempt to gain "freedom" for the Negro.
The growing discontent of Negroes in the United States creates an ideal
situation for the propaganda of the hate-mongers of SNCC. The leaders
are actively touring the country to preach their sermons of violence
in Negro ghettos, where they constantly stress their concept of "Black
SNCC is not a communist front organization. It may not avoid such
classification much longer, however, since it has accepted funds
from communist front groups and communists as workers. Communists
have the proverbial "foot in the door" and the question of whether
this influence will increase is now a matter of conjecture only.
Within the scope of current racist agitation in the United States
and the activities of Carmichael and other SNCC members abroad,
greater communist infiltration of SNCC and increased SNCC-aided
violence in American cities is entirely possible. SNCC promotion
of black racism and the advocacy of violence can only serve to
increase racial tension throughout the country and possibly
harm the struggle for civil rights being conducted by more
responsible Negro organizations.