Veterans of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade
23 WEST 26th Street New York 10, N.Y. MUrray Hill 3-5057
February 11, 1954
Thanks to the efforts of many people here and all over the world, our fellow veteran, Steve Nelson will not go to jail for 20 years. The barbaric sentence for alleged "sedition" under the Pennsylvania State Sedition Law was reversed by the Pennsylvania State Supreme Court.
The peoples of the world view with alarm the attacks on democracy under way in our country - the deal with the Franco government - and the bold bid for power on the part of the McCarthyites of our country. And by their actions on behalf of Steve Nelson, they have proved that they can play a decisive role in aiding the thousands of liberty loving Americans who are determined to beat such plans.
As long time veterans of the fight against fascism, we recognize that the job now is to inflict more defeats on McCarthyism. Steve Nelson and eight of his fellow veterans of the Lincoln brigade still face five years in jail for conviction under the federal "sedition" law -the Smith Act. These Smith Act charges have no more substance than the "sedition" charge which the Pennsylvania State Supreme Court reversed.
The Smith Act is part of the same pattern of anti-democratic laws which threatens not only many of our members - but the life of our organization as well. For this spring our existence as an organization will be at stake when we appear before the Subversive Activities Control Board set up under the McCarran Act. Enclosed is a reprint from the liberal weekly magazine "The Nation" which sets forth in the clearest terms the danger to American democracy from the McCarran Act.
If you feel that our association of men who fought against Franco in Spain has the right to continue to exist - to aid its members - to continue to fight fascism -we know you will know what to do.
Here in America, many people and organizations are protesting to Attorney-General Brownell in Washington, D.C, demanding that his office immediately drop its prosecution of the Veterans of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade. We thank you for your interest and support.
"... and that Government of the people, by the people and for the people, shall not perish from the earth."-ABRAHAM LINCOLN