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Coretta Scott King Closely Tracked by FBI

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Posted on Aug 31, 2007
Coretta Scott King
AP Images / John Bazemore

Under J. Edgar Hoover, the FBI kept close tabs on Martin Luther King Jr.‘s wife, Coretta Scott King—which isn’t exactly startling news, except for the detail that the agency’s surveillance intensified after her husband’s assassination in 1968.

One agent even read and reviewed her 1969 book “My Life with Martin Luther King, Jr.” and made a point to say Scott King’s “selfless, magnanimous, decorous attitude is belied by ... (her) ... actual shrewd, calculating, businesslike activities.”

But the file also shows that the Bureau’s real worry about Scott King was not the civil rights movement but instead her involvement with the peace and “anti-Vietnam War” movement. Government officials were afraid that she might try to complete what her husband had been doing when he died: “attempt to tie the anti-Vietnam war movement to the civil rights movement,” as one FBI agent put it.

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By purplewolf, September 1, 2007 at 5:49 pm Link to this comment

I used to be proud of this country when I was growing up.The older I got,the more ashamed I became of what has been done to America and what it once stood for.And still the same things that bring a bad reputation to America continue today by these pathetic organizations this goverment has set up and continues to maintain. To “spy” on innocent people. They know who the real threats are, but they cannot go after them usually because of political connections. To consider Coretta Scott King a threat is an insult to the intellect of all level headed thinking people.
If they are looking for potential threats to America,why wasn’t Pappy Bush looked into? You know King George’s grand daddy,who helped fund Hitler’s madness, especially when his son G.H.W.Bush was running with Ronald Reagan before Reagan was elected president,let alone allow someone with that type of background ever be allowed to become a president himself. And then continue the same insanity by not checking into this when G.W.Bush was handed the presidency illegally. Where were these agencies with their spies then? These agencies have proven how inefficient they are and it’s time to overhaul them.

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By cyrena, September 1, 2007 at 2:53 pm Link to this comment

re#98032 by Targetted,


Followed the link to the atrocities you’ve endured. Me too…not to quite this extent, but over a much longer period of time.

Can I suggest you might wanna MOVE? I mean, that’s at least part of your problem. It started in Georgia, and then you jumped out of the frying pan and into the flames of the surveillance, when you went to South Florida. (actually, anywhere in Florida would have put the goons on your tail).

Now of course I know that totally ignores the whole principle of the thing, since you’re bona fide citizens, and supposed to be able to go about your lives wherever you want, without harrassment from government goons.

Since my ancestors have been going through this for decades, (note the article) I can certainly understand those principles. But in the long run, you’ll probably live longer somewhere else.

It’s just not worth the grief.

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By G.Anderson, September 1, 2007 at 1:49 pm Link to this comment

This is one of the most shameful incidents in the history of out country. I almost can’t even bear to look at the headlines.

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By THOMAS BILLIS, September 1, 2007 at 3:57 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Thank God we have progressed.Now we make warantless surveilance legal.Do not worry in 40 years our children will be reading the excesses of this government and they will be thinking what kind of morons put up with it?We each have to answer that question our selves.Not whether we are morons to put up with it but what type?

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By targetted, August 31, 2007 at 8:57 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Here’s what these morons and the goon squads they fund do on our time and on our dime.

Yes, these knuckleheads were stealth-fully parked around our house, waiting for me to walk the dogs on the morning of Sept. 11th. I often wonder if they blew coffee out their noses when they heard both towers fell and the 19 bad guys these pinheads had whiffed on also stuck one in the Pentagon. Yea, I live in south Florida.

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By P. T., August 31, 2007 at 8:20 pm Link to this comment

The concern was reportedly that the civil rights movement would hook up with the anti-Vietnam War movement.  The ruling class takes opposition to imperialism as a serious threat.  You can see that today with the Iraq War and the Bush administration’s desire to spy on Americans.

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By cyrena, August 31, 2007 at 7:39 pm Link to this comment

I DO remember when these agencies were revered. The memory has long since faded. The irony is too cruel, because NOW, we have every reason to FEAR them. (at least Cheney’s CIA…they scare the hell out of ME)

So, how did it go from reverence to fear? It’s like we’re back in the McCarthy Era or something. Only, it’s worse, because nobody’s doing anything!!

Well, that’s not really true, because there are some of us. Still, how did this happen? Still, MLK is turning over in his grave, and you’re right; they probably were responsible for his assassination. I pretty much always figured that myself. Another one of those events that will always be shrouded in mystery. Our history holds many such events.

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By boggs, August 31, 2007 at 7:11 pm Link to this comment

It’s my feeling that not only did they spy on the Kings but they also assasinated MLK.

Do any of you remember when the FBI and the CIA used to be revered?
The memory is fading!

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By cyrena, August 31, 2007 at 5:02 pm Link to this comment

Well Ernest,

You pretty much answered your own question. We know what it says. And, we know it was a whole bunch of our best citizens.

Worse, it’s happening again. (If it ever stopped).

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By cann4ing, August 31, 2007 at 4:25 pm Link to this comment

What does it say about the state of our so-called “constitutional democracy,” then or now, when its government finds it necessary to spy on the best citizens this nation has to offer?

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By cyrena, August 31, 2007 at 2:44 pm Link to this comment

I don’t know how many of you may have followed this entire story through the link, but I did, and it turned out to be an excellent report.

I was pleasantly surprised to learn that it originated in Houston, Tx (the report) so kind of an “exclusive” for that station I guess. And, that’s good news. I’ve always felt like Texas somehow got left behind in the era of the Civil Rights Movement.

So, better to catch-up late than not at all.

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