[Marxism] Kasama on Aoki - Rosenfeld tape. How a smear is made.

X Y whdgm66 at gmail.com
Wed Aug 29 03:09:28 MDT 2012

Black Panther Aoki admitted being an agent? How a smear is made


Posted by kasama on August 27, 2012

“Layer upon layer…”

Watch the Aoki charges closely, and how they rippled through the
culture (and through the left!) Some people read the claims (in the
mainstream articles) that Richard Aoki admitted being an agent to
author Seth Rosenfeld.

Here is Seth Rosenfeld’s account which gave rise to headlines about
Aoki=Agent  throughout the mainstream press (which we reprinted, with
caution warnings, here on Kasama):

“In 2007, two years before he committed suicide, Aoki was asked in a
tape-recorded interview for the book if he had been an FBI informant.
Aoki’s first response was a long silence. He then replied, ” ‘Oh,’ is
all I can say.”

“Later during the same interview, Aoki contended the information wasn’t true.

“Asked if this reporter was mistaken that Aoki had been an informant,
Aoki said, “I think you are,” but added: ‘People change. It is
complex. Layer upon layer.’”

This was presented as an admission from Aoki and a coup for Seth
Rosenfeld (his accuser). And some people believed what they read, and
assumed it was true, and have been repeating it.

If you heard anyone say:

“The evidence seems convincing to me, including after Aoki’s comments
to Rosenfeld”…

Well, just listen to this recording a few times, and drop them a note.

If we draw any lesson from this (and there are several!), it should be
careful and deliberate suspicion about claims in the press. They lie.
And they particularly lie about revolutionaries. And disinformation
about revolutionaries is not just accidental, and not merely for
selfish, mercenary (book-promoting) reasons, but it has been (in the
U.S.) an organized covert activity of powerful government forces.

Shawnt wrote about this recording:

“Aoki clearly denied that he was an informant. He never said “its
complex layer upon layer” in the same sentence. It was Rosenfeld’s
article that misrepresented what was said.

“Aoki was responding to Rosenfeld’s accusations. Also, the Center for
Investigative Reporting added something Aoki did not say. Aoki did not
say “people change” anywhere on the recording that was played in the

Here’s the recording: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A606oy_gEFo

Here is the highly revealing transcript:

(It has Aoki’s little laughs and Rosenfeld’s sighs added)

Rosenfeld: Yeah. (pause) So, would you say it’s untrue that you ever
worked with the FBI or got paid by the FBI?

Aoki: I would say it.

Rosenfeld: (huge sigh) (pause) And I’m trying to understand the
complexities about it and I and I think…

Aoki: It IS complex. (very slight laugh)

Rosenfeld: I believe it is and…

Aoki: Layer upon layer.
Deconstructing the lie

Shawnt writes:

Aoki thinks Rosenfeld is an idiot for believing that line of bullshit.
“it IS complex” can be more accurately interpreted as sarcasm and
“layer upon layer” can be interpreted as “layers of bullshit stacked
upon another”. Pay attention to Aoki’s little laughs when you listen
to the recording. It’s not even close to being an admission of guilt.

And Seth Rosenfeld’s own article claims that Aoki said

“people change, its complex layer upon layer”:

2 things wrong with that. Aoki never said “people change” It’s not on
the tape anywhere. The other problem is a lack of context when
Rosenfeld leaves out what he said. All this comes from an award
winning reporter who worked for the SF Examiner and SF Chronicle.
Rosenfeld knows how to write and he knows what he is doing. The only
evidence that’s apparent is Rosenfeld’s embellishment and twisting the
facts to suit his faulty thesis. Combine that with Swearingen’s
dubious past and the only reasonable conclusion is that Aoki is being
snitchjacketed as part of a latter day COINTELPRO operation.

More information about the Marxism mailing list