so with the Communists. They have other aims of a propaganda nature described by Mr. Buchner:
A Communist must utilize a political trial to help on the revolutionary struggle. Our tactics in the public proceedings of
the law court are not tactics of defense hut of attack. Without clinging to legal formalities, the Communist must use the
trial as a means of bringing his indictment against the dominant capitalist regime and of courageously voicing the views
of his Party.
A study of the trial of the "first string" Communist leaders and the tactics employed by the defense will disclose
that these were primarily the tactics employed, which resulted in the citation of defense lawyers for contempt. It
was the motivating factor in the selection of Eugene Dennis, general secretary of the Party, to defend himself
despite his lack of legal training.
It is sometimes assumed that lawyers defending Communist cases are just like any other lawyers who take cases
as a matter of business and who are not to be held responsible for the views of their clients. But Mr. Buchner makes
it clear that lawyers in Communist cases belong in a different category. "The aid of such barristers," he declares,
"as deprecate the importance and the function of the
Partv in their pleading, must be decisively rejected"
The International Labor Defense, described by Attorney General Biddle as the 'legal arm of the Communist
Party," and now functioning as the Civil Flights Congress,
published a pamphlet some years ago entitled Under
Arrest! How to Defend Yourself in Court! What to Do
When Arrested and Questioned! which gives additional
pointers which are recommended for study in special
classes organized for the purpose.
Introducing this pamphlet, Helen Stasova, international
secretary of the International Labor Defense (International Red Aid), with headquarters in Moscow, declared.
"We must give directions to the workers on how to defend
Symbolic of their distrust of the dignity and sanctity of
our courts, the Communists do not rely upon legal defense.
Believing that the courts are primarily instruments of the
ruling class, the Communists rely primarily upon mass
action to terrorize the courts to act in behalf of their
defendants. Thus the pamphlet boasts that —
The principal work of the International Labor Defense
consists in arousing the widest mass protests, as the chief
effective method with which to wrest the working class militants from the bosses' clutches (p. 6).
In accordance with this practice, mass picket lines were
conducted around the Federal Court Building during the
trial of the eleven Communist leaders in 1919.
According to this approach, the policeman "is a servant
of the boss class. ° * * He is your enemy." Hence the
instruction for dealing with him or his superiors:
9 c * you shall not give the names of your fellow workers,
the names of organizations that you belong to. ° ' " And if
von are a foreign-born worker, no information of any sort, of
the date you landed, the name of the boat, etc. Cive your
name. That is all. You should not even furnish an address
If charged with assaulting a policeman, the defendant is
advised not to deny the act but to assert "vour right to
defend yourself" (p.16).
"Have no faith in fake promises of the cops or district
attorney," is a warning issued by this pamphlet (p. 11).
Defendants are urged to demand a jury trial so as to
"have much more opportunity to raise class issues" (p. 13).
The key to the defiant attitude of a Communist in the
form a ]
Eleven top leaders of CPUSA, convicted under
the Smith Act in 1949 on the charge of teaching and advocating overthrow of our government by force and violence, and since released
upon completion of sentences. Front row, II to r)
Robert Thompson, Henry Winston, Eugene Den- won: world I'lior*
nis, Gus Hall, and John Williamson; rear, Jacob Stachel, Irving Potfl*1
Carl Winter, Benjamin Davis, John Gates and Gilbert Green. Judge Har*
R. Medina, lower right inset, conducted this trial.
courts lies in the precept laid down to "make capitalism'
defendant, and yourself the prosecutor" (p. 16). In his o*
eyes and those of his associates, his defiance makes liii"
hero of the class war. Thus "the capitalist courtroom" rr" Comi
be used "as a forum from which the workers on trial exp" "lunist
before their fellow toilers the true nature of the court*
as a tool in the bosses' economic and political oppress!
Written in the days when the Communists had '
fully adopted their present Trojan Horse tactics, the p*
plilet is franker than William Z. Foster on the question
force and violence, declaring:
the masses of workers will be fully justified, historically
and socially, ill using means, including force and viol,
defense against capitalist force and violence and iii a revoWJ
tionary situation, to dislodge capitalism and replace it w'tn
a classless social order. ° ° ° (p. 17).
Despite their activities as a Soviet fifth column, C"
munists .uc advised to quote the Declaration of Indep1'
ence, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, and WoOol
Wilson in support of their right to revolution (pp. 18,1'
Reminiscent of the procedure followed to the lett^L
the defense in the trial of the eleven Communist I'-"
in 1949, causing weeks of delay, we find the following!
Before the jury panel is sworn in by the clerk, get up. ;*n
state that you challenge the entire panel of prospective iurt'rj
on the ground that it i.s composed of people whose social 8j*
economic interests will prejudice them against you, the v'r
1,aidant (p. 20).
Characterizing the various sedition laws, crimin*
archy statutes and criminal syndicalism acts which
been adopted by various states, the pamphlet rcll'r>.
them as "class laws, brazen and undisguised, forged ''N
capitalist state to suppress the struggle of the m*'
Defendants are warned against too great reliance"1
attorneys since they arc "limited by the technical rn''.
the courts" (p. 15). "No pussyfooting" is to be tol''r'
from attorneys. "An attorney," it is pointed out, "sho"
Facts Forum News, June,
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