Saturday, September 24, 2022
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Behind Enemy Lines

Writings and investigations from our Brothers and Sisters behind bars.

The four California prisoner class representatives call for solidarity and change

Collectively, we are an empowered, mighty force that can positively change this entire corrupt system into a system that actually benefits prisoners and thereby the public as a whole.

Texas prison officials approve, then rescind contact visit for Miguel and Paulina

After being promised a five minute contact period to hug, Miguel and Paulina were denied this opportunity. Turns out Major Nunez did not have the authority to allow Miguel and Paulina to hug.

Tehachapi SHU is the worst of any SHU, prison or jail I have seen...

On Aug. 28, 2014, I spoke with the Corcoran State Prison Step Down Program (SDP) facilitator who confirmed I was on the list to be transferred to Tehachapi (California Correctional Institution, or CCI) and that I would be stepped up a step – from Step 2 to Step 3 of the SDP. On Sept. 16, 2014, I was advanced up a step, to Step 3, so that’s all good. But the big lie is that there is a functional Step 3 and 4 program at this prison.

Palestinian prisoners support network stands in solidarity with U.S. prisoners on hunger strike in...

Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network expresses our solidarity with the hunger strike taking place in the Folsom State Prison B4 Administrative Segregation Unit (ASU) in California in the United States. Isolated prisoners launched their strike on 25 May to protest the inhumane conditions in which they are held in solitary confinement. The prison administration has refused to address their just and legitimate demands and has instead responded with increased repression.

Bomani Shakur from Ohio’s Death Row: Racism is evil – kill it!

They won’t cut your fingers off these days, or hoist your body over a bonfire; worse, they’ll give you what appears to be a fair trial, then find you guilty with no evidence to support the verdict, then throw you in solitary confinement for decades (until you either lose your mind or exhaust your appeals), then strap you down to a gurney and pump poison through your veins – and, worst of all, after all is said and done, they’ll call it justice!

Alabama hunger striker Kenneth Traywick issues demands and is force fed

Tens of thousands of men confined behind what is being called the “most dangerous” prison system in the nation. Alabama prisons have the highest homicide rate in America, as well as the highest suicide rate. But what is hidden – what has not been reported – are the root causes behind those statistics.

Sewage floods and savagery happen every day at SF County Jail

As I sit here today in the hole at the San Francisco County Jail known as CJ 5 in San Bruno, I’m saying to myself enough is enough with the brutal treatment here at the jail. On my desk is a copy of the San Francisco Sheriff’s Department Policies and Procedures Handbook, and although I can’t see them, there are some invisible policies and procedures being practiced on the daily at the jail. The San Francisco sheriffs’ “Don’t fuck with us, or we’ll fuck you up” policy is in full force, and if you think it is a game, I have first hand experience with this “hands on” policy, and it has been the worst experience of my life.

Soledad’s COVID-19 whistleblower hit with guard retaliation after outing officers for not wearing masks

Tuesday night Soledad State Prison officials decided to raid the cell of the Black Muslim activist for no other reason than because he wrote a negative story about them in the newspaper.

Why so many suicides at Lane Murray Unit, a Texas women’s prison?

For women in Texas prisons, it’s a perpetual fight. After five long, atrocious years of mental, emotional and physical abuse in prolonged solitary confinement at Lane Murry Unit – infamously nicknamed “Miserable Murray” – I have suffered tremendously. The percentage rate continues to rise for women committing suicide at Lane Murray Unit. When will justice be served? How many women must die before Lane Murray Unit is finally investigated by internal affairs and/or closed down?

Protest retaliation against Georgia prisoners

The U.S., with 4.5 percent of the world’s population and 25 percent of the world’s prisoners, is the world’s first prison state. Too long have we tolerated this backsliding from the great advances of the ‘60s. When we are presented with a clear case of retaliation, we must protest.

Alabama leader Kinetik Justice in fifth day of hunger strike, refusing all food and...

As a last resort to protest the Alabama Department of Corrections’ unlawful use of solitary confinement, Robert Earl Council, known nationally as Kinetik Justice, that he is on an official hunger strike, refusing all food and liquids. Join the phone zap demanding release for him and 30 other prisoners unjustifiably in solitary.

Prison leeches: Professionals who live off prisoners’ suffering

The Indiana Prison System is one example, and possibly the worst of the worst, of a culture of slave holder disdain for non-white humanity, criminal disregard for human rights and humanity itself, intentional abuse, harm and torture against caged and vulnerable human beings, and dare it be uttered – evil doing. It’s experiential, as Kevin “Rashid” Johnson shows us.

Free South Carolina Movement statement on the first anniversary of the state-orchestrated fratricide at...

We are gathered here on this day to commemorate the fallen comrades that made their transition in the Lee County Massacre exactly one year ago. If it weren’t for the innovative resources of prisoners, this travesty would have been downplayed by the South Carolina Department of Corrections (SCDC), or worse: It could have been swept under the rug.

Mumia Abu-Jamal hospitalized in diabetic shock, guarded, family and friends denied access

Imprisoned journalist and former Black Panther Mumia Abu-Jamal has been taken to the Intensive Care Unit of Schuylkill Medical Center in Pottsville, Penn., without any notification to his family, friends or lawyers. Abu-Jamal’s longtime friend, Professor Johanna Fernández, said, “We were told he was in diabetic shock and taken to the hospital.” Listen to an interview with Professor Fernández recorded by Block Report Radio at about 8 a.m., March 31, and an interview with Mumia's brother, Keith Cook, recorded this morning, April 1. This story is being updated frequently.

My name is Michael Johnson. I’m from Oakland, California

Family separation has become a prominent tool in the arsenal of the state.

Twelve years a slave in Texas

Twelve years a slave in Texas. / A living testimony, here I STAND. / Here to show the world that even the people society / throws away have the power and strength to HEAL OUR LAND! ... Happy Birthday, Comrade Malik!

California prisoners make historic call to end hostilities between racial groups in California prisons...

Prisoners in Pelican Bay’s SHU have announced a push to end all hostilities between racial groups within California’s prisons and jails. The handwritten announcement, sent to prison advocacy organizations, is signed by the PBSP-SHU Short Corridor Collective. The statement calls for the cessation of all hostilities between groups to commence Oct. 10, 2012, in all California prisons and county jails. It also calls on prisoners throughout the state to set aside their differences and use diplomatic means to settle their disputes.

Support Comrade Malik: Prisoner rights activist left in solitary far too long

Supporters of Keith “Malik” Washington ... are urged to sign and send this letter to: Ombudsman Office, P.O. Box 99, Huntsville, TX 77342-0099, 936-437-4927, fax 936-437-4930, ombudsman@tdcj.texas.gov and as many other intended recipients as possible. Send encouragement to Malik as well.

Torture in Corcoran: Endless lockdown and gladiator fights, again

Prisoners in 3C Unit at the state prison in Corcoran, California, who went on hunger strike in January are speaking out after the warden backed out of negotiations to end a months-long lockdown and violence orchestrated by prison officials. Family members and supporters gathered outside the prison on Feb. 9 and 10 to protest during what would have been visitation hours.

Watani Stiner: Tending to historical wounds

My life began in the Jim Crow South, in Houston, Texas. I remember the segregated world I was born into …  the separate water fountains, the back of the bus, the going around to the back door of Mr. Fontnoe’s grocery store to buy milk for my mother and grandmother. I recall the segregated section of the movie theaters – and the long, seemingly endless net partitioning the giant sandy beaches, separating the “Colored” folks from the “Whites.” Can you imagine that it once was a reality, a segregated beach!