Anatomy of an Infiltrator


Spring 2017, CORE historians E.J. Rachell  and Nishani Frazier placed a Freedom of Information request for Roy Innis.  Innis began as a member of Harlem CORE but rose through the ranks to the national office. He eventually became National Director of CORE in 1968.  However, his tenure became mired in controversy over money mismanagement, gangsterism, and conservative funding. By the latter 1970s, rumors emerged to "explain" CORE's drastic turn under Roy Innis - principal among them were accusations that Innis was an FBI infiltratrator and/or informant.

Such assertions are difficult to substantiate.  Frazier additionally noted in "The FBI and the Mischaracterization of Bayard Rustin"  that such categories acted to confuse individual circumstances and hide the true power/culpability of the state.  Because of the contentious nature of FBI documents and the many ethical considerations of digital publication, Rachell and Frazier chose to review ALL materials before providing open access.

Examination of these documents will begin in the summer of 2018 and will continue until both Rachell and Frazier finalize review and ethical considerations of document release.

For more information on Roy Innis, visit EJ's website on Harlem CORE.