David Gilbert

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David Gilbert

David "Dave" Joseph Gilbert (born October 6, 1944 in Cambridge, Massachusetts) He was highly active in Students for a Democratic Society activities at Columbia University in New York in 1968 and was subsequently a leader in the New York Weather Underground Organization in late 1969. He submerged into the WUO underground in early 1970, thus becoming a fugitive and continuing to remain underground. In April, 1971 Gilbert's fingerprint was found on an item in a WUO "bomb factory" found in San Francisco.[1]

Gilbert and Kathie Boudin fathered a child, Chesa Boudin who was 14 months old when his parents were imprisoned following the 1981 Brinks armed robbery in which two police officers and a Brinks guard were killed. Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn took in the child and raised him.

Gilbert was imprisoned in 1981 with a 75 years to life sentence, being eligible for parole in 2056.

Congress of Racial Equality

In 1962 Gilbert joined the Congress of Racial Equality.[2]

Committee Against the War in Vietnam

In 1965 Gilbert started the Committee Against the War in Vietnam at Columbia University.[2]

Students for a Democratic Society

Gilbert was one of the founding members of the Students for a Democratic Society chapter there and in 1967 he wrote the first national SDS pamphlet that named the system as 'U. S. Imperialism.' He also participated in the Columbia strike of 1968.[2]

Goal of the WUO

The Denver Post in their Nov. 12, 1969 edition reported on a debate which had occurred on Nov. 11, 1969 at the University of Denver between a conservative named Phillip Abbott Luck and David Gilbert. During the debate Gilbert had indicated that the WUO goal "is world communism". He indicated further that the world has arrived at the point where "debate is useless" and "what's happening is the people's war". Gilbert expressed the belief that a violent Third World revolution is the only way to reach justice for all human beings. He complained of the complacency of people in the U.S. indicating that in Cuba and Red China things are different. He claimed that these countries are responsive and efficient in their working towards betterment of the common people.[1]

Brinks Armed Robbery

David Gilbert

On Oct. 20, 1981, Sgt. Edward O'Grady, Patrolman Waverly Brown and Brinks guard Peter Paige were gunned down in Rockland County, N.Y. by heavily armed terrorists. The half dozen gunmen — all Americans — were members of the Weather Underground, a faction of the Students for a Democratic Society and the Black Liberation Army, formed from members of the Black Panther Party and the Republic of New Afrika.[3]

Commenting on the armed robbery of a Brinks armored truck carrying $1.6 million in cash, Gilbert said,

"On October 20, 1981, I was captured when a unit of the Black Liberation Army and allied white revolutionaries attempted to take funds from a Brinks truck, with the unfortunate result of a shoot-out in which a guard and two policemen were killed."[2]

Foreign Travel

It was ascertained that in mid-1966 Gilbert notified his draft board that he would be traveling to the Dominican Republic during parts of June and July, 1966.[1]

Gilbert was also the representative of the WUO at a conference in Canada. An advertisement for the conference described Gilbert as being a leader of the Columbia University rebellion in 1969 and as being an SDS Regional Organizer.[1]

David Gilbert Forum

Brecht Forum held a book launching March 19, 2012 for David Gilbert's - "Love and Struggle: My Life in SDS, the Weather Underground, and Beyond" with Lumumba Bandele, Dan Berger, Terry Bisson, Kenyon Farrow, Matt Meyer, Dequi Sadiki, Meg Starr, Challenging Male Supremacy Group & Laura Whitehorn. Moderated by Kazembe Balagun.

However Lumumba Bandele, Dan Berger, Dequi Sadiki, and Meg Starr did not show, but Monifa Bandele, and Azam Oteri did.[4]