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History Forgotten: The Capital Bombed and The Culprits Released

History Forgotten: The Capital Bombed and The Culprits Released

I love history, but I did not know this until it was brought to my attention. On November 7, 1983 the M-19 Communist Organization detonated a bomb in the US Senate in an attempt to destroy. Susan Rosenberg was arrested for this. She was pardoned by Bill Clinton. She is now an administrator for Black Lives Matter., where she does fundraising and administrative work for the organization.  

Left, part of the U.S. Capitol’s north wing after a M19 bomb damaged it in 1983. Right, an image from a sympathetic pamphlet reading “Resistance is not a Crime! Stop the Political Show Trial!” showing core members of M19 (left to right, Alan Berkman, Tim Blunk, Susan Rosenberg, Linda Sue Evans, Marilyn Buck, Laura Whitehorn) in prison. (Images: Courtesy of William Rosenau; Alan Berkman Papers, Archives & Special Collections, Columbia University Health Sciences Library. Photo illustration by Lila Thulin)

Just before 11 p.m. on November 7, 1983, M-19 called the U.S. Capitol switchboard and warned them to evacuate the building. Ten minutes later, a bomb detonated in the building’s north wing, harming no one but blasting a 15-foot gash in a wall and causing $1 million in damage. Over the course of a 20-month span from 1983 to 1984, M19 also bombed an FBI office, the Israel Aircraft Industries building, the South African consulate in New York, D.C.’s Fort McNair and Navy Yard (which they hit twice.) The attacks tended to follow a similar pattern: a warning call to clear the area, an explosion, a pre-recorded message to media railing against U.S. imperialism or the war machine under various organizational aliases (never using the name M19).

According to a FBI report, “Ms Rosenberg openly advocated the overthrow of the U.S. Government through armed struggle and the use of violence”. 

After living as a fugitive for two years, Rosenberg was arrested in 1984 while in possession of a large cache of explosives and firearms over 750 lbs and automatic weapons.

Rosenberg was sentenced to 58 years’ imprisonment on the weapons and explosives charges. She spent 16 years in prison. She is currently listed as the vice chair of the board of directors of Thousand Currents, the fundraising arm of the Black Lives Matter Global Network. 

Her sentence was commuted to time served by President Bill Clinton on January 20, 2001, his final day in office.

As America contemplates on the history of January 6, 2021, shouldn’t we remember November 7, 1983.

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Suzanna, co-owns and publishes the newspaper Times Square Chronicles or T2C. At one point a working actress, she has performed in numerous productions in film, TV, cabaret, opera and theatre. She has performed at The New Orleans Jazz festival, The United Nations and Carnegie Hall. She has a screenplay and a TV show in the works, which she developed with her mentor and friend the late Arthur Herzog. She is a proud member of the Drama Desk and the Outer Critics Circle and was a nominator. Email: suzanna@t2conline.com

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