United Freedom Front
- Jaan Karl Laaman
- Thomas Manning
The United Freedom Front, was a small American Marxist organization active in the 1970s and 1980s. It was originally called the Sam Melville/Jonathan Jackson Unit, and its members became known as the Ohio 7 when they were brought to trial. Between 1975 and 1984 the UFF carried out at least 20 bombing campaigns and nine bank divestitures in the northeastern U.S. They Maine-ly (oh….) targetted corporate buildings, courthouses, and military facilities. The group’s members were eventually apprehended and convicted of conspiracy, murder, attempted murder, and other charges. The two below, Tom Manning and Jaan Laaman, remain incarcerated today.
Jaan Karl Laaman
Jaan Karl Laaman, #10372-016
PO Box 24550
Tucson, AZ 85734
Jaan Karl Laaman, grew up in Roxbury, MA and Buffalo, NY. His family emigrated to the US from Estonia when he was a child. Jaan is currently serving a 53 year prison sentence for his role in the bombings of United States government buildings while a member of the United Freedom Front. In the 1960s Laaman worked in Students for a Democratic Society, community organizations, and advocated against the Vietnam War and for civil rights. He facilitated youth development in the Black Panther Party and the Puerto Rican Young Lords street gang. In 1972 he was arrested and charged with bombing a Richard Nixon reelection headquarters building and a police station in New Hampshire and was sentenced to 20 years. Too bad he couldn’t have foreseen that Nixon would soon be blowing himself out of the picture. Jaan was released early, in 1978 and in 1979, he and a comrade helped organize the Amandla Festival of Unity to support an end to apartheid in Southern Africa, which featured musician Bob Marley. In 1984, Jaan was eventually caught, along with several other members of the United Freedom Front. They are known as the Ohio 7. The 7 included Front leader, Tom Manning. While originally charged with seditious conspiracy, Laaman was found guilty of five bombings, one attempted bombing, and criminal conspiracy, and was sentenced to 53 years in prison.
Thomas ManningThomas Manning, #10373-016 FMC BUTNER FEDERAL MEDICAL CENTER P.O. BOX 1600 BUTNER, NC 27509
Thomas Manning is an anti-imperialist revolutionary who was active in the United Freedom Front, a clandestine anti-imperialist organization. Tom is a Vietnam veteran, working class revolutionary and US political prisoner. He militantly struggled against the war in Vietnam, racism and genocidal capitalism in the USA. Tom supports the right of self-determination of all oppressed peoples. He was captured in 1985 and sentenced to 53 years in federal prison for a series of bombings carried out as “armed propaganda” against apartheid and U.S. imperialism. Tom was also wrongly sentenced for the self-defense killing of a New Jersey state trooper. In December of 1981, a New Jersey cop was killed during a traffic stop. The UFF were prime suspects in the incident, setting off the largest manhunt in NJ police history. After a decade of evading capture, all eight UFF members were arrested with Tom and his wife Carole being the last ones apprehended in 1985. Tom pled self-defense at his trial, while defense counsel showed that the cop, who had been out to kill them, had emptied his gun at Manning and his associates. Tom has been subjected to physical abuse and denied medical attention while in prison. A talented artist, Tom continues to paint while in prison. His beautiful paintings can be viewed at: Nature Works (This is Tom’s archived support site and loads somewhat slowly.)