Congressmen Want FBI, CIA to Disclose Files On Latino Activists

U.S. Representative Joaquin Castro of Texas and Rep. Jimmy Gomez of California have urged the FBI and CIA to release classified documents concerning the monitoring of Latino leaders during the Civil Rights Movement.

Castro and Gomez penned a letter to FBI Director Christopher Wray and CIA Director William J. Burns, urging the disclosure of all files pertaining to the monitoring of Latino civil rights figures. They aim to ascertain if either agency attempted to impede the Latino Civil Rights Movement, despite its protected status under the First Amendment.

At a House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence session on March 12, Castro inquired about the document release to Directors Wray and Burns. Both officials pledged cooperation with Castro and expressed readiness to investigate the issue.

The lawmakers requested the declassification of any documents pertaining to Latino leaders from the 1950s to the 1970s that remain classified, to the fullest extent feasible. In an official correspondence addressed to Directors Wray and Burns, Castro and Gomez articulated their quest for information to ascertain if the FBI or CIA monitored, targeted, and possibly interfered with Latino civil rights figures, akin to the FBI’s actions against Black civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Castro and Gomez underscored that releasing the documents would not only enhance a more comprehensive comprehension of the civil rights struggle in the United States but would also align with the government’s pledge to transparency. They emphasized that a deeper insight into historical governmental actions could serve as a safeguard against potential future oversteps by government entities.

This matter is particularly poignant for Castro, as his mother, Rosie Castro, was monitored by FBI informants due to her engagement in the Chicano Movement.




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