FBI releases files with the Bureau monitors the activities of “rules for radicals” author Saul Alinsky

The FBI on Tuesday released more than 400 pages of its files on the left of the community activist Saul Alinsky. (Photo by Myron Davis/The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images)

The FBI on Tuesday more than 400 pages of its files on left-wing activist Saul Alinsky, the showed published, that the Bureau, for years, monitored the community organizer, and investigated allegations that he was a Communist.

Alinsky, the author of the book “rules for radicals” and was known for his activism in Chicago, died in 1978. A self-described, “radical” Alinsky never identified as a Communist. But the FBI, for years, harbored suspicions about his sympathies.

The FBI files show, the office received a tip in 1940 questioned whether Alinsky a Communist was. The FBI in Chicago, wrote in a document that the office was interested in gathering the information, whether Alisnky was involved in the organization of a “Communist or subversive group.”

A 1941 FBI document, though, said the Chicago Police Department an investigation and found “no information that he is inclined communistic ally.”

This March 26, 1947, file photo shows FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover calling the Communist party of the United States a “Fifth column” whose “goal is the overthrow of our government” during testimony before the House Un-American activities Committee in Washington. (AP)

The police investigation, the document said, “did not disclose that Alinsky is a member of the un-American organization, nor did they disclose that he was ever any comments or issued any acts against the government of the United States or for the benefit of a foreign government.”

The files specify to to examine to the Bureau, for years, to see if Alinsky had Communist sympathies. It newspaper clippings about Alinsky’s work to organize in black communities, as well as the notes included the findings from “confidential sources” that the office of information about Alinsky activities.


1965 letter to then-FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover from a person whose name was redacted, contain newspaper clippings about Alinsky and said, “The situation that strikes me about this enclosed clipping is the fact that our Constitution allows the people the freedom—people who try to tear it down.”is

“I wish I could do something to a man like this,” the man wrote in the letter to Hoover.

But the channel said, “all I can do is be there, be on the alert, the respect of law and order and justice and an abiding Americans, and our democracy.”

In the last few years, the Republicans resurrected Alinsky to use their name as a weapon against the Democrats in the presidential election: 2016 Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, your college work met with Alinsky in 1968, while writing to his community organizing and President Obama, like Alinsky, he famously worked as a community organizer in Chicago before entering politics.

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