Students March Again on Mass Hall
Gearing Up for Thursday Rally
In the second of several demonstrations this week protesting Harvard's investments in companies which the business in South Africa, 30 Law School students yesterday marched from campus to Massachusetts Hall, waving banners and chatting. "Derek Bok's" get the word, this is not Johannesburg."
Organized by the Law School Divestment Committee the Four long rally was described as a warm up for a major campus demonstration Thursday featuring the Rev. Jesse L. Jackson.
Yesterday's march, in which participants waved the same banners and placards used in a similar event Monday, culminated in a series of brief speeches outside the entrance to President Bok's Mass Hall office.
Addressing the demonstration, Rebecca E. Tillet, a first-year Law Student and member of the Divestment Committee, charged that Bok knew of "the litany of horrors" in the apartheid state but that "our moral arguments are not going to make it with him. We need to make life so hard to Derek Bok and the Harvard Corporation that they have to get out" of owning the stocks.
"It's an insult that we even have to get together to make Harvard divest," she added.
Harvard owns about $563 million to stocks in companies with South African operations. The University has long maintained that complete divestiture would be a less effective means of fighting apartheid than its current policy of using its position as a shareholder to improve business practices in South African political organizaion.
Students were joined in their protest yesterday by Masilo Mabeta a member of the Black-dominated African National Congress, an outlawed South African political organization.
"Mr. Bok has not blesses us with his presence," Mabeta said, urging in his speech that Bok explained them why Harvard has not yet divested. Mabeta and the student protesters invited Bok's response in a letter which they slipped under the door of Mass Hall.
Neither Bok nor any other Harvard official respondent yesterday to the letter, and Bok said in an interview that he would not comment on any of 'his week' protest activity.
But Harvard did release yesterday a copy of a letter from Bok to Sen. Edward M. Kennedy '54 (D-Mass.), endorsing Kennedy's Senate proposal for a variety of economic sanctions against the South African government and U.S. businesses with operations there (See Story Page 1)
While no written response to the protesters emanated from Mass Hall, yesterday saw a tightening of security in and around the building's administrative offices.
Though a plain-clothes guard stood watch during the protest, University Police Chief Paul E. Johnson denied rumors that he had approved round-the-clock surveillance.
But, he said, the rallies had prompted him to increase overall security for Mass Hall and several other campus buildings.
"We'd be remiss if we didn't say particular attention." Johnson said. He refused to detail the security arrangements.
Members of a variety of groups involved with this week's rallies have indicated that they may camp outside Mass Hall later this week, but do not plan to attempt a sit in or takeover.
Yesterday's rally, which attracted about as many onlookers as many onlookers as, ended with the demonstrators walking to Bok's office window and repeating their Monday chant, "Hey, hey, ho, ho, there's blood on your portfolio."
The activists plan another gathering today on the Law School campus. Organizers have predicted that Thursday's rally with Jackson and other speakers, slated for Memorial Church steps, will be one of the largest demonstrations at Harvard in several years