Alexander Defense Committee

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Duration: February 1965-1971?
Location: New York, New York, United States


The Alexander Defense Committee (ADC) was formed in February 1965 in response to the persecution of Dr. Neville Alexander and ten of his comrades by the South African government. The eleven were arrested in July 1963 and held eight months in solitary confinement before being indicted and convicted of sabotage. The "sabotage" they were guilty of consisted of having formed study groups to consider various methods of conducting the struggle against apartheid. ADC also supported other South African political prisoners. ADC had chapters in the United States including Madison, Wisconsin; Canada; and Europe (some of which may have been formed earlier). Statement of aims: 1. To publicize as widely as possible the case of Dr. Neville Alexander and his colleagues, who have been sentenced to long prison terms in the Republic of South Africa under the notorious "sabotage" law. 2. To provide fund for the defense of Dr. Alexander and his associates, and other political prisoners in South Africa, and to provide support for their families as long as they themselves are unable to do so. 3. Through this case, to focus the public opinion in the United States on the inhuman apartheid policies pursued by the present government of the Republic of South Africa and on the systematic destruction of civil and political liberties which is the inevitable consequences of the attempts to carry out these policies. 4. To organize such action as may be possible within the United States to compel the government of the Republic of South Africa to renounce its apartheid policies, to amnesty all political prisoners, to repeal its undemocratic restrictions on the rights of free speech and free association, to respect the rule of law in all prosecutions, and to ameliorate the unspeakable conditions under which political prisoners are held. 5. To co-operate as closely as possible with all organizations in the United States and abroad which have similar goals. (Source: ADC promotional leaflet on this website and archive descriptions.)

Organizational Archive


Title: Alexander Defense Committee
Time Span: 1964 - 1968
Media: 3 rolls of microfilm
Description: The collection includes orrespondence, newsletters, clippings, promotional material for national speaking tours, and files on ADC chapters in the United States, Canada, and Europe. Also present are speeches and writings of I. B. Tabata and Franz J. T. Lee, who toured the United States to raise funds for the group and for the families of the prisoners; papers documenting ADC's role in the deportation case of W. M. Tsotsi; and scattered records of other organizations supporting the ADC such as the American Committee on Africa and Unity Movement of South Africa. Most papers are written in English, but others are in German, French, Dutch, and an African language, possibly Xhosa.
Housed At: Wisconsin State Historical Society
Location: 816 State St., Madison, WI 53706, United States
Catalog/Finding Aid: view
Restrictions: Available only on microfilm
Phone: 608-264-6400
Related Website: http://www.wisconsinhistory.org/

Organizational Archive


Title: Alexander Defense Committee: Madison Chapter
Time Span: 1963 - 1967
Media: 1 folder
Description: Records include press releases and material distributed by the national organization; correspondence; financial, membership and sponsor lists; background material; and newspaper clippings, all primarily concerning the speaking engagements of I. B. Tabata and Franz J. T. Lee in Madison.
Housed At: Wisconsin State Historical Society
Location: 816 State St., Madison, WI 53706, United States
Catalog/Finding Aid: view
Phone: 608-264-6400
Related Website: http://www.wisconsinhistory.org/