Wednesday, June 5, 2013

The Ronald (Ron) Kaufman Manifesto

Disclaimer (October 28, 2013): This article was written not long after I finally tracked down news articles about this bombing plot and perpetrator. I have been looking for details about this for decades, and the miracle of Google finally came through.

However, the articles from 1972 were riddled with errors and inaccuracies, that I was not able to refute until recently (October, 2013). Now armed with more information, including court documents, I can say that any relation between Ron Kaufman and the Weathermen was coincidental. I have no doubt that their members and he crossed paths in the New Left of the day, but it does not look like he was an actual “member” at any time.

My book length project blog for this is the Time Bomber Book blog, which I update when I can as I work on the manuscript.

From several January 1972 newspaper reports, I have pieced together this as the Ronald Kaufman Manifesto.  From other reporting at the time, Kaufman was against the violence of the 'ant-war' movement of his time, at least he was against certain factions within the movement. Note that he is not against all violence, he just does not like kidnapping people and holding them for ransom.  He does not like bombing inhabited buildings either, he just wants to make new construction unusable until his demands are met.  (All linking mine):
"Kidnaping people and demanding property (or money) in exchange for their lives exemplifies the anti-life property value of our sick and brutal society,"

“The Movement in Amerika would do better to kidnap property and offer it in exchange for the freedom of our people.”

"… kidnap a luxury hotel, a corporate office building or a superhighway and demand the release of political prisoners as ransom."

“What makes these demonstration time bombs unusual are the long range tuners in them. Clock timers used in time bombs typically have a cycle of 12 hours and can therefore only be set up to 12 hours in advance. The timers used in this demonstration bombing have a cycle of 7 months or 217 days.”

"could easily be embedded in the structure of a building under construction (e.g., the new FBI building in Washington) or under the roadbed of a highway not yet paved over. In 3 or 4 months continued construction would make the device virtually undetectable. The authorities and the public would then be told who is to be freed in exchange for the exact location of the device. They would also be told how much time remained on the timer."

Should "the power structure" refuse to go along, the letters concluded,

"they would then have the option of sitting around for months waiting for some portion of one of their empty toys to blow up. Who will want to vacation in that hotel, meet in that boardroom or drive on that super highway for the next few months?"

He ended his letters with:

“Free all political prisoners - Remember George Jackson and Sam Melville.”
Note that 217 days is over 8.9 months, rather than 7 months as the quote states.  The seven month number is repeated in almost all of the January 1972 news articles of the incident.  Sorry, 271 days is 8.9 months, 217 days is indeed 7 months and change.
This was all done years before electronic watches with alarms that could be set months or years in advance.  Today we have cell phones that can be programmed to turn them selves on and sound an alarm, or trip a relay, to set off a bomb.

It seems like Dr. Kaufman is under the same impression that many of the Left continue to have, that some banker in some branch has the power to tell the bureaucracy what to do.  In the world according to the then 33 year-old PhD holder, blowing up a janitor in the middle of the night will sure show those "power structure" types!  And unless everybody does exactly what he says, the poor little rich boy from suburban Milwaukee will send you a letter too, informing you that the gates to your subdivision have been mined and will go off any day now unless you let more like him out of the slammer.

Stay tuned for more, including a post on Kaufman's basic information as reported over the years, along with all of his aliases and congressional testimony naming him.

Ⓐ Steve Ⓐ

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