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On Nov. 25, Hancock State Prison in Sparta, Georgia, erupted into a full scale riot, as prisoners ran off the guards in several of the cell houses (euphemistically called dormitories, as though this was a college campus) in protest over abuses by guards and grievances unresolved by administrators.
"Most people realize that crime is simply the result of a grossly disproportionate distribution of wealth and privilege ... an aspect of class struggle from the outset. Throughout its history, the United States has used its prisons to suppress any organized efforts to challenge its legitimacy," wrote George Jackson in "Blood in My Eye."
“I just got a call from a very happy Cisco who got the news yesterday that the case against him was dismissed,” writes Kiilu Nyasha. “The San Francisco 8 case dragged on for over four years while we struggled to mount a campaign to free them.”
“Imprisonment is an aspect of class struggle from the outset. It is the creation of a closed society which attempts to isolate those individuals who disregard the structures of a hypocritical establishment, as well as those who attempt to challenge it on a mass basis.” – Comrade George Jackson, field marshal of the Black Panther Party
I got a letter today from Yogi Bear, Hugo Antonio Lyons Pinell. As most of you know, Yogi has been tortured in the Pelican Bay SHU since 1990 and in other California gulags since the early 1970s. He began his incarceration in 1964 at age 19. He has joined the hunger strike and writes ...
Prisoners in the Security Housing Units, SHUs, at Pelican Bay and Corcoran state prisons in California are beginning an indefinite hunger strike on July 1, 2011, to protest the cruel and inhumane conditions of their imprisonment in what is being called “an unusual show of racial unity.” Breaking news: Prisoners at Centinela have joined the hunger strike. A prisoner there reports: “Only a few inmates are walking the yard. No Blacks or Hispanics have left their cells. No one has gone to work. He said all the races are united in this fight.”
On Thursday, June 2, 2011, came word that former Black Panther leader, Geronimo ji-Jaga (née Elmer G. Pratt) died in exile in Tanzania.
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.
This people’s victory in North Africa, first in Tunisia and now in Egypt, is OUR VICTORY TOO. We, the people of the world, must move forward toward global revolution that will liberate the entire global community.
Hallelujah! Revolution has come! The political miracle spreads as the power of the people manifests all over North Africa, particularly Tunisia and Egypt. This could very possibly be the beginning of a global revolution that would free the people of the world from the tyranny of the 1 percent who own 80 percent of the world’s resources – and initiate real democratic self-determination. As Frederick Douglass noted: “Power concedes nothing without a demand.” We must collectively and globally demand our human rights, human equality. All power to the people! People of the world, unite! - Kiilu Nyasha
Few people in America, especially the underfunded, don’t have a friend, relative, classmate or colleague in prison. We also know that most prisoners are there for non-violent, often drug related issues. Yet we keep silent. “Your silence becomes approval,” wrote our brilliant journalist and revolutionary, Mumia Abu-Jamal.
Siddique Abdullah Hasan, Bomani Shakur (Keith LaMar), Jason Robb and Namir Mateen (James Were) will start a hunger strike on Monday, Jan. 3, to protest their 23-hour-a-day lockdown for nearly 18 years. They were sentenced to death for their alleged roles in the 11-day Lucasville rebellion in April 1993. They are innocent! They were wrongfully convicted! They are political prisoners.
I’ve been corresponding with prisoners since 1970, shortly after joining the Black Panther Party in 1969. There were fierce arguments being waged regarding individual leaders, strategies and tactics, and ideology.
The candidacy of Wyclef Jean is important because it makes this Haitian election a media “event” and gives it the illusion of credibility, when it’s real goal is to suppress the Lavalas movement and put a democratic front on a brutal military occupation.
A United Nations army still occupies Haiti six years after the coup. Their unstated mission is to prevent the return to power of Aristide’s Lavalas Party. Fanmi Lavalas has already been banned from the next round of elections, so enter Wyclef Jean. The Miami Herald reported, “Secret polling by foreign powers in search of a new face to lead Haiti’s reconstruction” might favor Jean’s candidacy, as someone with sufficient name recognition who could draw enough votes to overcome another Lavalas electoral boycott.
The vicious, premeditated and illegal attack on the six-boat Freedom Flotilla by Israeli Zionists on May 31 in international waters left nine humanitarians shot dead – one of whom was an American citizen – and over 40 wounded on the Turkish ship, Mavi Marmara, as well as many others traumatized and injured from being badly beaten, jailed and/or hospitalized.
'My son is being held in illegal detention beyond his statutory release date. He was sentenced for a non-violent crime June 23, 1992, and was given 21 years and 10 months. His release date should have been on March 19, 2010,' reports Katherine Wilson. He son adds, 'ADX Florence and CIA agents are denying me law books, legal calls, legal copies, legal envelopes, legal visits and postage stamps.'
Those of us who fought so hard in the 1960s for change, revolutionary change, are watching the clock turn backwards. No other group can claim to have fought longer or harder in the forefront of progressive and revolutionary struggles than Black folks. The most oppressed will lead any revolution since they have the least to lose and the most to gain from a change.
Pierre Labossierre, cofounder of the Haiti Action Committee, alerts us to oppose "relief" funds and protest U.S. military occupation that threaten Haitian independence and sovereignty and to demand the return of President Aristide and the inclusion of Lavalas in Haitian democracy. Following the interview, listen and watch audio and video files featuring Pierre, Cynthia McKinney, Kiilu Nyasha, Nia Imara, Minister of Information JR, Joy Moore and more - all calling on everyone to “stand in solidarity with Haiti.”
Time is of the essence in Haiti, yet the international response has been painfully, tragically slow. Would this pace of rescue – where every minute counts in digging people out of the wreckage – have been the case if the earthquake victims were European?