The Truth About NATLFED


By Mary Struggler,

They’re after us.  They’re afraid of us.  Some day they’ll come for us.  They’ll take what they can from us, intimidate us with their tactics, say all kinds of things about us, ruin our reputations and more.

“They” as the enemy.

“They” as NATLFED.

The enemy

The we/they mentality was prevalent in the Organization.  We were a self-perceived threat to the powers.  Some former cadres assert that the government did not give a crap about Gino and the Organization and that Gino orchestrated the raid in 1984.  What kind of Organization calls the cops on itself?  I have a hard time believing that premise.  Yet the person that relates the event is one that was part of the inner circle during that time, trusted to do what was necessary and a loyal cadre that obeyed orders.

The reason I have a hard time accepting it is that I don’t think Gino would have committed to a tactic that ultimately left him bedridden for the rest of his life.  For such a man, being bedridden was humiliating.  I must consider the alternative: if he did order it, the injury was an unexpected outcome.

The police routinely patrolled the neighborhood.  If you ever sat on watch duty, you remember your instructions to keep an eye on the one window at Medgar Evers that had the mysterious person in the window, the “other side’s” watch.

Several persons ended up in prison, furthering the notion that the other side was out to get us.  Dan, Mandy, Kit, David and Harold ended up in jail after the “New York Six” trials, with Kathleen avoiding prison.  Kit and David never returned after their release; Harold as far as I know is still in prison (update: please see Discussion Board comment from Pancho with a link highlighting Harold’s post-prison career). For several years after their release, Dan and Mandy used aliases (Alan Arioch and Samantha Harvey).

If they were out to get us, it meant we were truly organizing the revolution and they were afraid of us.


If you were tempted to leave the Organization and someone recognized the classic signs, you were subjected to re-education.  Signs included:

  • Excessively being “down” (sick in bed with “mysterious” illnesses)
  • Opining contrary to the majority vote, refusing to yield
  • Only doing certain assignments that you liked and refusing to do other assignments

Maybe you even said you were going to leave, which left you subject to threats and intimidation.  How will you make it on the outside?  The cops will come after you and make you confess to things.  We know people in Anytown, USA and we’ll find you.  We have judges on our side.


It’s one part of the recovery process.  The majority of persons that left really didn’t have anything to worry about.  With a few exceptions, of course.  There were some people who the Organization said it was going after such as FCFD (who allegedly stole millions of dollars from the Organization).  Let’s not forget Jeff for writing his article in The Public Eye.

I am not an expert in post-traumatic stress but I can share this.  After my expulsion, I worried every time I saw a cop.  Was he after me?  When I saw active cadres perchance on the streets, were they after me or was it mere coincidence?  I remained in the metropolitan area for several years, so yes, I did run into cadres that were conducting business including procurement runs, literature tables and even one speaking engagement.  Yes, they saw fit to harass me and attempt to intimidate me.  I think this is an example of the exception.

If you read what others have posted, they’ll tell you that nothing happened after their departures.  Okay, they get the phone call(s) and letter(s) asking them to return, but other than that what else?

There was once an active project called Operation Retread where the Organization attempted to recruit back certain former cadres.  I don’t know to what extent the Organization utilizes that recruitment project.  I only know of one attempt about a year ago but that doesn’t mean they are or are not using it regularly.

Operation Retread was different from another campaign that lacked a name.  I’ll call it the Castaway Campaign, as labels seem to be important to most people.  Castaways were cadres sent out on assignments who did not return.  They failed to meet their tactical objective of opening a new office somewhere, organizing within a specific milieu such as the gay and lesbian movement, starting a new support group in an unlikely area such as Ohio, worked in atypical arenas, etc.

The Castaways usually did not receive much direction.  Sometimes it was a lack of interest on the part of leadership.  Other times, it was perceived as a security risk to maintain regular/routine contact.

There is another group of cadres similar to the Castaways but different.  Just as some persons in Russia lit a candle and placed it in their window on a certain night to indicate a place of safe harbor, other persons were charged with specific tasks, maintaining a seemingly normal life, sleepers waiting to be woken up for their special moment in the revolution.

The point I’m trying to make is that they’re probably not after you.  One day you might get that phone call.  Fretting about it constantly, whether it will or will not happen, will only diminish you as a person.

The Ross site seems to have some good articles about the recovery process.  I’m happy to share what I can but I must tell you: I am not a professional. If you can afford professional help, consider it.

I don’t want your money.  I’d like some of your time only if you’re interested in adding to this blog.  They made some empty threats to a bunch of people, but that’s all it is: empty threats.  Unless you’re one of the exceptions to the rule, you really don’t have much to worry about.  They don’t care about the ones that left to be with a lover or even the ones that left over disagreements such as Nelle.

This is just food for thought.

July 31, 2010 A note from Ghostwriter 1984:

If you get an e-mail from someone threatening to report you to the authorities for your past participation in the Organization, Occam’s Razor must be so.  Only a current member would suggest such a thing.  The Organization is notorious for threatening to turn persons into the authorities if they left.  They used it as a control mechanism.  But the Organization called the cops on itself to orchestrate the raid.  Okay, valid point but that was done for a specific purpose.  The days of robbing banks are long since passed (if even true — after all, I was not there during that period).

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