So during the 2008 presidential campaign, when Obama was revealed as a disciple and associate of Ayers, the bomber’s past was resurrected, and now, the San Francisco Officers Police Association and the group America’s Survival are publicizing the case to bring Ayers and Dohrn to justice.
Says a letter from the police union to America’s Survival, which is running a Campaign for Justice for Victims of Weather Underground Terrorism, "There are irrefutable and compelling reasons to believe that" Ayers and Dohrn "are largely responsible for the bombing of the Park Police station and others around the country." Ayers and wife Dohrn are as responsible for killing McDonnell, they allege, as if they held a gun to his head and pulled the trigger.
Ayers, Dohrn, and the Weathermen
Ayers and Dohrn, now "respectable" radical professors in Chicago, were among the FBI Most Wanted fugitives because of their nefarious activities with the Weather Underground, also known as the Weathermen, during that infantile spasm of radicalism and insanity called the ’60s. The Weathermen banded together to undermine this country’s ill-conceived war in Vietnam and foment communist revolution in the United States, as well as "destroy the white racist’s society and establish a democratic centralist’s government," as Bernadine Dohrn said in 1969 at a Weathermen "war council" in Flint, Michigan. Furthermore, she wanted her pie-eyed apostles to "bring the war home and off [kill] their parents," and told the hirsute "warriors" that the Manson killings were merely rough justice for the "pigs": "Dig It. First they killed those pigs, then they ate dinner in the same room with them, they even shoved a fork into a victim’s stomach! Wild!"
And that isn’t all. To call Ayers, Dohrn, and the Weathermen "insane" may well be an insult to the mentally ill. When Chicago district attorney Richard Elrod was paralyzed for life thanks to the Weathermen-inspired Days of Rage riots in Chicago in October, 1969, Dohrn warbled a tune she titled "Lay Elrod Lay," sung to the melody of Bob Dylan’s "Lay, Lady, Lay." Dohrn may well be a more dangerous sociopath than Ayers. Then again, he did marry the woman.
In any event, funded and aided by the Cuban, Chinese, and East German communist intelligence agencies, Ayers, who told FBI informant Larry Gratwohl that he and his revolutionaries would kill 25 million Americans to implement communism, was nothing if not a committed bomber. As he described the Weathermen bomb planted at the Pentagon in 1972 in his book Fugitive Days, "Everything was absolutely ideal…. The sky was blue. The birds were singing. And the bastards were finally going to get what was coming to them." In February 1970, The Weathermen planted three fire bombs to murder the family of John Murtaugh, whose father was presiding over the trial of 21 Black Panthers implicated in a plot to detonate bombs in New York City. In November of that year, Dohrn called the Associated Press to warn that more bombs were coming. As Ayers wistfully said about the Pentagon attack, "There’s something about a good bomb."
This succinct rendition of the Weathermen’s goals and their maniacal obsession with murder and mayhem substantiate the testimony of Gratwohl, who infiltrated the group for the FBI and worked intimately with the radical known as "Billy." Gratwohl has testified in detail about the Weathermen and their bombings, one of which killed three of its members, including Ayers’ girlfriend, instead of the GIs at Fort Dix it was meant for. Sgt. McDonnell wasn’t so lucky.
The Murder of Sgt. McDonnell
That grim day in 1970, the Park Police station was busy with officers coming and going at a watch change, as former officer James Pera described it at a press conference held by America’s Survival. Unbeknownst to Sgt. Brian McDonnell and his comrades in blue, the Weathermen planted a bomb on a window ledge just outside the station. The murderers hoped that setting the bomb to detonate at a shift change would obliterate dozens of cops. Fortunately, it exploded a few minutes too early, but unfortunately for McDonnell, it was timed perfectly to catch him in the blast. Just across the room from the window, McDonnell was checking teletypes when the bomb exploded, sending fence staples and lead bullets into McDonnell’s neck, eyes, face, and brain. Another officer lost an eye. Others retired on disability because of damaged hearing.
Though the case remains open, police believe the Weathermen planted the bomb and murdered McDonnell. As Gratwohl says, his testimony on the matter has been consistent for 30 years. He recounted Ayers’ comments in the aftermath of the bombing: "It was a success. But it’s a shame when someone like Bernadine has to make all the plans, make the bomb and then place it herself. She should have to do only the planning." Gratwohl has told the same story repeatedly and under oath in front of a Senate Committee.
Ayers the Liar
To this day, Ayers avers that he never hurt anyone, a flat-out lie. Of course, the mainstream media believe Ayers, either from gullibility or sympathy, but in more candid moments Ayers flatly admits that he did, indeed, perpetrate bombings. As he told the New York Times on September 11, 2001, ironically enough, "I don’t regret setting bombs. I feel we didn’t do enough." Then there is his book, Fugitive Days, where he admits his role "in the bombings of New York City Police Headquarters in 1970, of the Capitol building in 1971, and the Pentagon in 1972," or his simple rendition of what radicals must do: "Kill all the rich people…. Kill your parents." Beyond that, he admitted to David Horowitz, a former comrade in the radical revolution, that he was, indeed, guilty. "I interviewed Ayers ten years ago," Horowitz writes at his website, Front Page magazine, "in a kindergarten classroom in uptown Manhattan where he was employed to shape the minds of inner city children. Dressed in bib overalls with golden curls rolling below his ears, Ayers reviewed his activities as a terrorist for my tape recorder. When he was done, he broke into a broad, Jack Horner grin and summed up his experience: ‘Guilty as hell. Free as a bird. America is a great country.’"
Free as a bird is right. Ayers and Dohrn went underground in 1970 after the failed Fort Dix plot, hiding from the police until they finally surfaced and surrendered in 1980. Federal bombing and riot charges were dropped in 1974 because FBI agents, on the orders of Assistant Director Mark Felt, "Deep Throat" of Watergate fame, planted illegal wiretaps to gather evidence against them. Ayers wasn’t punished; Dohrn paid a fine and received probation for the Days of Rage riot in Chicago.
But Ayers and Dohrn’s luck might have run out. Police Chief Heather Fong and the U.S. Justice Department, the San Francisco Chronicle reported, "put in calls to the [SFPA] to find out just what they were doing talking out of school about an active investigation that may be ready to make a move soon in the 1970 bombing at Park Station. The word was, button your lips." If true, and if the powers that be are not trying to silence the union, then that’s good news. In their letter to Cliff Kincaid, chairman of America’s Survival, SFPA leaders wrote that "those responsible for the cold-blooded murder of Sgt. McDonnell and the injuries to the other officers have never been brought to justice and the case remains open." San Francisco’s cops, they wrote, "have not forgotten the devastating effects of this event."
No, police don’t forget when one of their own is murdered. Justice is coming.
Photo: AP Images