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OfflineLearyfanS
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Today in counterculture history (03/06) * 4
    #14075111 - 03/06/11 12:06 PM (9 years, 8 months ago)

  • 1970:  The Weather Underground Greenwich Village townhouse explosion takes place




Quote:

The Greenwich Village townhouse explosion was the premature detonation of a bomb as it was being assembled by members of the American radical left group, Weatherman – later rechristened the Weather Underground – in the basement of a townhouse at 18 West 11th Street between Fifth Avenue and the Avenue of the Americas (Sixth Avenue) in the Greenwich Village neighborhood of Manhattan, New York City. The three persons nearest the bomb were killed, two others in the house were slightly injured, and the four-story townhouse was reduced to rubble and caught fire.

The event

Shortly before noon on Friday, March 6, 1970, people in the townhouse were assembling nail bombs packed with dynamite and roofing nails. Former members of Weatherman later advanced differing claims as to the planned uses of the bombs. According to Mark Rudd, the plan was to set them off that evening at a dance for noncommissioned officers and their dates at the Fort Dix, New Jersey Army base, to "bring the [Vietnam] war home".  Other reports say that some were destined for the Fort Dix dance and some were to destroy the main library at Columbia University.

Preparation and construction

According to Cathy Wilkerson who was a leader of the New York collective, the Weatherman collective, disappointed with the minimal effects of their earlier attempts with Molotov cocktails at the home of Judge Murtagh and other locations, at the suggestion of Terry Robbins, another of the leaders, decided to use dynamite for their planned actions. A considerable quantity of dynamite and a number of electric fuses were purchased. Targets were investigated and three designated, including a dance at Fort Dix, an army base in nearby New Jersey. It was reported that "arguments went on day and night" in the townhouse, with Kathy Boudin favoring the use of antipersonnel bombs, and Diana Oughton having misgivings.

No one in the collective was experienced with explosives, Terry Robbins and Cathy Wilkerson lacking knowledge even in the basics of electricity. A simple circuit, without safety features, was designed consisting of a battery, a fuse, a clock and wire connecting these elements. The dynamite was inserted into a one foot length of water pipe packed with nails. Precisely what went wrong is uncertain, but the resulting series of blasts in the sub-basement of the townhouse killed those near the bomb and caused the collapse of the townhouse.

Immediate aftermath

Killed by the blast were Theodore Gold, Diana Oughton, and Terry Robbins. Surviving in a stunned and bleeding state were Weatherman members Kathy Boudin and Cathlyn Wilkerson, who were upstairs at the moment of the blast. The two survivors were led out from the burning structure by a police officer and the off-duty New York City Housing Authority patrolman who had entered in search of survivors.  The rescuers were treated at St. Vincent's Hospital for smoke inhalation.

Boudin and Wilkerson disappeared before they could be questioned. They had been free on bail on assault charges stemming from the Days of Rage riots in Chicago.  A neighbor who rendered aid after the blast described them as "dazed and trembling" as they were led "staggering" from the wreckage, one clad only in blue jeans and the other naked. The neighbor brought them to her house, where they showered, borrowed some clothing and told a housekeeper they were going to a local drugstore, then got into a taxi and disappeared.

The building was owned by Wilkerson's father, a radio-station executive.  As the search for bodies continued days after the explosion, Wilkerson's parents made a televised appeal to their missing daughter to avoid needlessly risking the lives of searchers. They asked her to "let us know how many more people, if any, are still left in the ruins of our home", saying "more lives would be needlessly lost and only you have the key".

Investigation

The blast was initially thought to be a series of natural gas explosions, but investigators quickly concluded from the extent of the damage that dynamite or some other powerful explosive was the cause. Gas lines broken by the blast fed an ensuing fire.  According to the police investigator in charge, "The people in the house were obviously putting together the component parts of a bomb and they did something wrong."

An initial search turned up a 1916 37-mm antitank shell.  In the following days, a brick-by-brick search of the rubble uncovered 57 sticks of dynamite, four 12-inch (300 mm) pipe bombs packed with dynamite, and 30 blasting caps. The pipe bombs and several eight-stick packages of dynamite had fuses already attached. Also found were timing devices rigged from alarm clocks, maps of the tunnel network underneath Columbia University, and literature of the political protest organization, Students for a Democratic Society (SDS), from which the Weatherman organization had split.  Police described the building as a "bomb factory", and said that at the time of the explosion dynamite was apparently being wrapped in tape with nails embedded to act as shrapnel.

The crime scene was gory. It took nine days of collecting body parts to determine how many persons had died in the blast. Fingerprint records were required to identify the corpses of Theodore Gold, a leader of the 1968 Columbia University student protests, and Diana Oughton, the organizer of the 1969 SDS national convention.  As to the identity of the third corpse, rumors circulated in radical circles that it was that of Terry Robbins, a leader of the 1968 Kent State University student rebellion and a founder of the Weathermen, who would be indicted the following month along with 11 others for organizing and inciting riots during the "Days of Rage".  That May, this rumor was confirmed in a communique purportedly issued by the Weathermen. The message was a "declaration of war" by the organization which warned that it would "attack a symbol or institution of American injustice" within the next two weeks. This communique named Robbins as the third body and described Gold, Oughton, and Robbins as revolutionaries "no longer on the move".

The fate of the survivors

Neighbors positively identified Wilkerson as one of the two women who had been led out from the wreckage. Boudin was not positively identified as the second survivor until some weeks later.  Both women were charged with illegal possession of dynamite in the townhouse blast. They forfeited their bail on the above mentioned Chicago assault charges by failing to appear in Chicago for trial ten days later.  The United States Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) placed them on its Ten Most Wanted Fugitives list, but they succeeded in avoiding capture for a decade. Wilkerson surrendered in 1980. Boudin was apprehended in 1981 for her role in the Brink's armored car robbery.

The house

The townhouse at 18 West 11th Street was originally built in 1845. In the 1920s it belonged to Charles E. Merrill, cofounder of Merrill Lynch, who lived there with his family until 1931.  The bombing is lamented in a poem by Merrill's son, the poet James Merrill, titled with the address of the house: "Shards of a blackened witness still in place. / The charred ice-sculpture garden / Beams fell upon. . . ."

Actor Dustin Hoffman and his wife Anne Byrne were living in the townhouse next door at the time of the explosion. He can be seen in the 2002 documentary The Weather Underground, standing on the street during the aftermath of the explosion.

(wikipedia)









  • 1970:  The Beatles release the single "Let It Be"




Quote:

"Let It Be" is a song by The Beatles, released in March 1970 as a single, and (in an alternative mix) as the title track of their album Let It Be. It was written by Paul McCartney and credited to Lennon/McCartney. It was the final single released by The Beatles before McCartney announced his departure from the band. Both the Let It Be album and the US single "The Long and Winding Road" were released after McCartney's announced departure from and subsequent break-up of the group.

"Let It Be" holds the number-one spot on "The Fans' Top 10" poll included in The 100 Best Beatles Songs: An Informed Fan's Guide by Stephen J. Spignesi and Michael Lewis. The song is number three in the 100 Best Beatles Songs list, only behind "Strawberry Fields Forever" and "A Day In The Life", which is number one.

In 1987, the song was recorded by charity supergroup Ferry Aid (which included McCartney). It reached No. 1 on the UK Singles Chart for three weeks and made the top ten in many other European countries.

Critical assessments

Critical reception for "Let It Be" has been positive.  In 2004, it was ranked number 20 on Rolling Stone's list of "The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time".  In 2010, the magazine placed the song at #8 on The Beatles' 100 Greatest Songs.  Allmusic said it was one of "The Beatles' most popular and finest ballads".  Ian MacDonald had a dissenting opinion, writing that the song "achieved a popularity well out of proportion to its artistic weight" and that it was "'Hey Jude', without the musical and emotional release."

John Lennon also commented on "Let It Be". Prior to a take during the 31 January 1969 recording session, he asked, "Are we supposed to giggle in the solo?"  (This is a similar quote to Lewisohn's "The Complete Beatles Recording Sessions" (p170) but Lennon says "during the solo" not "in the solo" as quoted here.) In Lennon's Playboy interview in 1980, he disavowed any involvement with composing the song.
“ That's Paul. What can you say? Nothing to do with the Beatles. It could've been Wings. I don't know what he's thinking when he writes "Let It Be". I think it was inspired by "Bridge over Troubled Waters" [sic]. That's my feeling, although I have nothing to go on. I know that he wanted to write a "Bridge over Troubled Waters".”

As MacDonald explained, Lennon is wrong about "Bridge over Troubled Water" being McCartney's inspiration: "Let It Be" was recorded approximately a year before "Bridge over Troubled Water" was released, and half a year before the latter was written.

Personnel

The Beatles


    * George Harrison – lead guitar, backing vocals
    * John Lennon – Fender Bass VI, backing vocals
    * Paul McCartney – lead and backing vocals, piano, maracas
    * Ringo Starr – drums

Additional musicians

    * Billy Preston – keyboards
    * Linda McCartney – backing vocals (on single release only)
    * Uncredited performers – two trumpets, two trombones, tenor saxphone, cellos


B-side "You Know My Name (Look Up the Number)"
Released 6 March 1970
Format Vinyl record 7"
Recorded Apple Studio
31 January 1969
EMI Studios
30 April 1969
4 January 1970
Genre Rock
Length 3:50
Label Apple Records
Writer(s) Lennon/McCartney
Producer George Martin
Certification 2x Platinum (RIAA)

(wikipedia)
















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Mp3 of the month: The Tea Company - Make Love Not War



Edited by Learyfan (03/06/13 05:30 AM)


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OfflineCherk
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Re: Today in counterculture history (03/06) [Re: Learyfan]
    #14075141 - 03/06/11 12:13 PM (9 years, 8 months ago)

Today in terrorist and boy band history*


what is behind your fascination with "counter culture"?


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I have considered such matters.

SIKE


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OfflineLearyfanS
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Re: Today in counterculture history (03/06) [Re: Learyfan]
    #14075957 - 03/06/11 03:49 PM (9 years, 8 months ago)

















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Mp3 of the month: The Tea Company - Make Love Not War



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Offlinepfxtc
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Re: Today in counterculture history (03/06) [Re: Learyfan]
    #14075961 - 03/06/11 03:49 PM (9 years, 8 months ago)

weather underground were a bunch of fucking douchebags, glad they blew themselves up


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koods said:
Young male going by the name "Bassfreak" entered Worcester General complaining of a sharp pain in his buttock region after attending EDM event. Attending physician considered a possible diagnosis of acute rave anus, but upon further investigation it was determined there was nothing cute about patient's anus.

Life-long trip report


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OfflineLearyfanS
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Re: Today in counterculture history (03/06) [Re: pfxtc] * 1
    #14075974 - 03/06/11 03:53 PM (9 years, 8 months ago)















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Mp3 of the month: The Tea Company - Make Love Not War



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OfflineLearyfanS
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Re: Today in counterculture history (03/06) [Re: Learyfan] * 1
    #15907669 - 03/06/12 06:41 AM (8 years, 8 months ago)

Annual bump.

















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Mp3 of the month: The Tea Company - Make Love Not War



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Invisiblevinsue
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Re: Today in counterculture history (03/06) [Re: Learyfan] * 2
    #15907997 - 03/06/12 09:10 AM (8 years, 8 months ago)

" U tube Vid Uploaded by Shroomeryslearyfan on Jan 12, 2011" ... :congrats: . . . :peace:


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"All mushrooms are edible; but some only once." Croatian proverb. BTW ...
  Have You Rated Ythans Mom Yet ?? ... :taser:  ... HERE'S HOW ... (be nice) .  :mod: ... :peace:


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OfflineTri High
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Re: Today in counterculture history (03/06) [Re: Learyfan]
    #15908178 - 03/06/12 10:11 AM (8 years, 8 months ago)

Apparently this andrew breitbart character had video of our president hanging out with the people of the weathermen.  Maybe we'll see the video in the coming weeks, post mortem.


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you just need money to get laid - starfire_xes


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OfflineLearyfanS
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Re: Today in counterculture history (03/06) [Re: vinsue]
    #17911890 - 03/06/13 05:47 AM (7 years, 8 months ago)

:cool:















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Mp3 of the month: The Tea Company - Make Love Not War



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Invisiblevinsue
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Re: Today in counterculture history (03/06) [Re: Learyfan] * 2
    #17912073 - 03/06/13 07:36 AM (7 years, 8 months ago)



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"All mushrooms are edible; but some only once." Croatian proverb. BTW ...
  Have You Rated Ythans Mom Yet ?? ... :taser:  ... HERE'S HOW ... (be nice) .  :mod: ... :peace:


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OfflineLearyfanS
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Re: Today in counterculture history (03/06) [Re: vinsue]
    #17912453 - 03/06/13 10:41 AM (7 years, 8 months ago)

Yep.  :grin:
















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Mp3 of the month: The Tea Company - Make Love Not War



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OfflineLearyfanS
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Re: Today in counterculture history (03/06) [Re: Learyfan] * 1
    #19658190 - 03/06/14 06:13 AM (6 years, 8 months ago)

Dustin Hoffman lived next door to the exploded townhouse.
















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Mp3 of the month: The Tea Company - Make Love Not War



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OfflinemuirileD
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Re: Today in counterculture history (03/06) [Re: Learyfan] * 1
    #19658312 - 03/06/14 07:46 AM (6 years, 8 months ago)

Never even heard about any of this, let alone the WUO.
Pieces of American history you don't get taught in schools


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:bonghit:




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OfflineLearyfanS
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Re: Today in counterculture history (03/06) [Re: muirileD]
    #21369339 - 03/06/15 06:35 AM (5 years, 8 months ago)

Yeah, I definitely don't see that event being covered in any high school curriculum.  Anyway today is the 45th anniversary of the Beatles single as well as that Weather Underground townhouse explosion. 
















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Mp3 of the month: The Tea Company - Make Love Not War



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OfflineLearyfanS
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Re: Today in counterculture history (03/06) [Re: Learyfan]
    #22978496 - 03/06/16 08:44 AM (4 years, 8 months ago)

Annual bump.


















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Mp3 of the month: The Tea Company - Make Love Not War



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OfflineLearyfanS
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Re: Today in counterculture history (03/06) [Re: Learyfan]
    #24140377 - 03/06/17 06:27 AM (3 years, 8 months ago)

Annual bump.














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--------------------------------


Mp3 of the month: The Tea Company - Make Love Not War



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OfflineLearyfanS
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Re: Today in counterculture history (03/06) [Re: Learyfan]
    #25042220 - 03/06/18 07:42 AM (2 years, 8 months ago)

Annual bump.












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--------------------------------


Mp3 of the month: The Tea Company - Make Love Not War



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OfflineLearyfanS
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Re: Today in counterculture history (03/06) [Re: Learyfan]
    #25855624 - 03/06/19 06:42 AM (1 year, 8 months ago)

Annual bump.










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--------------------------------


Mp3 of the month: The Tea Company - Make Love Not War



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OfflineLearyfanS
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Re: Today in counterculture history (03/06) [Re: Learyfan]
    #26519908 - 03/06/20 03:42 AM (8 months, 15 days ago)

50th anniversary of both The Beatles' "Let It Be" single and the Weathermen Greenwich Village townhouse explosion.

















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Mp3 of the month: The Tea Company - Make Love Not War



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