1/27/2020

bauaw2003 BAUAW NEWSLETTER, MONDAY, JANUARY 27, 2020

 



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Save The Date: Black Lives Matter at School Week, February 3-7, 2020.



Mark your calendar! The Black Lives Matter at School national week of action will be held from February 3-7th, 2020–and educators from coast to coast are organizing to make this the biggest coordinated uprising for racial justice in the schools yet. 

Black Lives Matter At School is a national coalition educators, parents and students organizing for racial justice in education..  We encourage community organizations and unions to join our annual week of action during the first week of February each year. To learn more about how to participate in the week of action, please check out the BLM@School starter kit.. 

If you or your organization would like to support or endorse the week of action, please email us at: BlackLivesMatterAtSchool2@gmail..com...  

During the 2018-2019 school year, BLM@School held its second national week of action in some 30 different citiesaround the country.. During the nationally organized week of action, thousands of educators around the U...S..... wore Black Lives Matter shirts to school and taught lessons about the guiding principles of the Black Lives Matter Global Network, structural racism, intersectional black identities, black history, and anti-racist social movements. 

In addition to centering Blackness in the classroom, BLM at School has these four demands:

1) End "zero tolerance" discipline, and implement restorative justice

3) Mandate Black history and Ethnic Studies in K-12 curriculum

The lessons that educators teach during the week of action corresponded to the guiding principles of Black Lives Matter:

Monday: Restorative Justice, Empathy and Loving Engagement

Tuesday: Diversity and Globalism

Wednesday: Trans-Affirming, Queer Affirming and Collective Value

Thursday: Intergenerational, Black Families and Black Villages

Friday: Black Women and Unapologetically Black

With your help, this year's BLM at School week of action can continue to grow and provide healing for Black students.  Learn more about how to participate by visiting our website, www.BlackLivesMatterAtSchool.com... Let us know what you are planning for BLM at School week this school year or ask us how to get involved with the action by emailing us at: BlackLivesMatterAtSchool2@gmail.com..

Related

https://blacklivesmatteratschool......com/2019/10/15/save-the-date-black-lives-matter-at-school-week-feb-3-7-2020/










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Join the International Days of Action against Sanctions and Economic War March 13-15, 2020

Sanctions Kill!

Sanctions are War!

End Sanctions Now!


Organize an event in your area against U.S. imposed sanctions! Help build a Global Movement with hundreds of actions around the world March 13-15


Help expose this war crime against people of the world.


Add your endorsement at: https://sanctionskill..org/


List events and contact info at: info@SanctionsKill.org

Sanctions Kill!

Sanctions are War!

End Sanctions Now!


Please add your endorsement and help spread the word



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Party for Socialism and Liberation

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Presidential candidate Gloria La Riva denounces Trump's new Iran sanctions

La Riva speaking on human impact of U.S. Sanctions

Campaign tweet of La Riva at anti-war protest speaking on the human impact of U..S. sanctions

"Sanctions are a silent killer that have already had devastating effects in Iraq and Iran. I denounce Mike Pompeo's and Steven Mnuchin's announcement of more sanctions on Iran, which are solely intended to create suffering on the Iranian people," said Gloria La Riva, 2020 presidential candidate and longtime anti-war activist.

"It is clear that the Trump administration is not backing down from its belligerence. In fact, Trump is forcefully pursuing further confrontation, and is all the more reason for us to remain mobilized against a new war on Iran."

Join the Sat. Jan. 25 – Global Day of Protest – No War On Iran!

"Sanctions are an act of war," she continued, "I traveled three times to Iraq during the 1990's when the United States government imposed a total blockade of the country for more than 12 years. I witnessed the human toll, thousands of people dying every month from the blocking of food, medicine, and infrastructure materials after the 78-day U.S.. military bombing of 1991."

La Riva produced the 1998 award-winning documentary, Genocide by Sanctions: The Case of Iraq, based on her investigative work there...

"And now President Trump, via executive order, is virtually tightening a noose on Iran." In the Friday address Treasury Secretary Mnuchin announced that Trump's sanctions included penalties that would be applied to any individual or governments trading with or involved with Iranian construction, manufacturing, textiles or mining industries.

"Sanctions are designed to destabilize a country's society, they are part of a larger war drive," La Riva said. "They hit the most vulnerable people first, the sick, young children, elderly and the poor because they lose access to necessary items. In Iran the prices of potatoes have already increased over 300% from previous sanctions. The costs of rice and chicken and many other goods have gone up.. The point of sanctions is to create suffering—with these kinds of acts it is no wonder Iran and the Iraqi Parliament have called for the expulsion of the U.S. military from the region.

"There is no justification for these sanctions. In fact United Nations resolutions state that there is no justification for policies that target a whole population.. Such an act of aggression is recognized as genocide."

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo claimed that Iranian general Qassem Soleimani was behind imminent threats to Americans but when asked for specifics, he only cited the death of a U.S.. contractor killed in Iraq. However, that was weeks prior to the killing of Soleimani.

La Riva said, "by logic and definition a past occurrence does not constitute not an imminent threat. What we know instead is that with Trump's abrogation of the JCPOA, he embarked a while ago on an offensive that the people of the United States and worldwide are extremely worried about.."

La Riva has been in the streets of San Francisco with thousands of other people demanding No New War on Iran..

She is running nationally for the Party for Socialism and Liberation, and in California she is seeking the Peace and Freedom Party nomination. Her vice-presidential candidate is Leonard Peltier, Native political prisoner unjustly held in federal prison now for 43 years.

Point five of La Riva's Presidential 10 Point Program reads, "Shut down all U.S. military bases around the world—bring all the troops, planes & ships home.. U.S. foreign policy uses the pretext of national security to enforce the imperialist interests of the biggest banks and corporations. That is what is behind the endless wars and occupations. Use the $1 trillion military budget instead to provide for people's needs here and worldwide. Abolish nuclear weapons.. Stop U.S. aid to Israel. Self-determination for the Palestinian people, including the right of return. End the U.S. blockade of Cuba and sanctions against Venezuela, Iran and all countries. Independence for Puerto Rico and cancel its debt!"

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Party for Socialism and Liberation

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La Riva / Peltier 2020 Campaign
10-Point Program

10 Point Program

The 10-Point Program of the La Riva/Peltier 2020 Campaign is a fighting program that represents the interests and needs of the vast majority of people of the United States and extends international solidarity to the peoples of the world. Our campaign will reach to every corner of the U.S. with the message that only socialism can solve the crises of climate change, racism, poverty and war. It will take a people's movement for real, lasting and sustainable change. We hope you will join us!

★ 1 | Make the essentials of life constitutional rights

The U.S. has more than enough so that all the essentials of life — food, housing, water, education, health care and a job or basic income can be guaranteed rights — rather than distributed only for profit. Create a completely free and public healthcare system.. Make education free—cancel all student debt. Fully fund rebuilding of the infrastructure in transport, water and utility systems. Stop all foreclosures and evictions. End all discrimination based on ability/disability.

★ 2 | For the Earth to live, capitalism must be replaced by a socialist system

Global warming, pollution, acidified and depleted oceans, fracking, critical drought, plastics choking the seas, nuclear weapons and waste — it is clear that capitalism and production for profit are destroying the planet and threatening all life. The crisis is already here, with the most vulnerable and oppressed areas of the U.S. and Global South bearing the brunt. Using truly sustainable energy and seizing the oil and coal companies to stop fossil fuel pollution, are urgent steps needed to reverse climate change. Ultimately, only the socialist reorganization of society can assure the future of the people and the planet.

★ 3 | End racism, police brutality, mass incarceration. Pay reparations to the African American community

Mass incarceration and racist policing are symptomatic of the 400 years of brutal repression meted out to African-descended peoples in the U.S. Reparations must be paid! More than 2.2 million people are behind bars in the largest prison complex in the world. End mass incarceration of all oppressed and working-class people. Fully prosecute all acts of police brutality and violence. Free Leonard Peltier, Mumia Abu-Jamal and all political prisoners!

★ 4 | Full rights for all immigrants

Abolish all anti-immigrant laws. Stop the raids and deportations and demonization of immigrants..... Shut down ICE and the concentration camps and reunite families. The government's war on immigrants must end. The border wall must be dismantled. Amnesty and citizenship for those without documents... Full rights for all!

★ 5 | Shut down all U.S.. military bases around the world—bring all the troops, planes & ships home

U.S. foreign policy uses the pretext of national security to enforce the imperialist interests of the biggest banks and corporations. That is what is behind the endless wars and occupations. Use the $1 trillion military budget instead to provide for people's needs here and worldwide. Abolish nuclear weapons. Stop U.S.. aid to Israel.. Self-determination for the Palestinian people, including the right of return. End the U.S. blockade of Cuba and sanctions against Venezuela, Iran and all countries. Independence for Puerto Rico and cancel its debt!

★ 6 | Honor Native treaties. Free Leonard Peltier now

Both major parties have continued to allow the destruction and theft of Native lands by mining and corporate agricultural interests in blatant disregard of indigenous sovereign rights. 33% of Native children live in poverty and many of the poorest U.S. counties are reservations.. The crisis of missing and murdered Indigenous women and the over-incarceration of Native peoples shows the bankruptcy of capitalism from its earliest inception in the Americas until today..

★ 7 | Full equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people

Fight back against anti-LGBTQ discrimination and violence... Defend marriage equality. Full equality in all matters governed by civil law, including employment, housing, healthcare and education. No to "religious exemption" laws that allow discrimination against LGBTQ people!

★ 8 | Equality for women and free, safe, legal abortion on demand

Stop the attack on women's reproductive rights and defend Roe v. Wade... Women must have the fundamental right to choose and to control their own bodies. Women still earn 22 percent less than men, and the gap is even more severe for Black and Latina women. Close the wage gap and end the gender division of labor...

★ 9 | Defend and expand our unions

Support the right of all workers to have a union. Fight back against the attacks on collective bargaining.. Require employers to recognize card check union votes. Repeal the Taft-Hartley Act. Focusing on low-wage worker organizing, rebuild a fighting labor movement.

★ 10 | Take over the stolen wealth of the giant banks and corporations – Jail Wall St.. criminals

The vast wealth of the giant banks and corporations is created by workers labor and the exploitation of the world's diminishing natural resources. The billionaires looted and destroyed the economy. It is time to seize their assets and use those resources in the interests of the vast majority. Power must be taken out of the hands of the super rich, and Wall Street criminals must be jailed.

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Chelsea Manning just spent another birthday behind bars.


Sign the Petition: Free Chelsea Manning Now

Judge Anthony Trenga

Chelsea-1000x600

In 2010, former military intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning disclosed earth-shattering information about the nature of asymmetric warfare and U.S. handling of global affairs. And she paid dearly for it. Chelsea was incarcerated for years, including long stretches in solitary confinement, under conditions that the United Nations condemned as torture.

After millions of people around the world spoke out and demanded her release, Chelsea's sentence was commuted. But the US government did not stop persecuting her.

Now, Chelsea has been back in jail for nine months, and faces nine more. Not because she has committed any crime, but because of her conscientious objection to participating in a secretive grand jury investigation into the publication of her 2010 disclosures.

Between their original forensic investigation and Chelsea's detailed statement at court martial, the government gained exhaustive knowledge about her role in the disclosures. They have no need for her testimony—they obtained at least one indictment a full year before she was called to testify before the grand jury, and disclosed another two months after she was jailed for her refusal to do so.

Chelsea's refusal to participate in this process is part of a long history of resistance to grand juries, which are routinely used to harass and entrap activists, journalists, and truth tellers. In a shocking move, the judge in the case has imposed massive fines on Chelsea, charging her $1,000 per day while the US government holds her in "coercive confinement," ostensibly to convince her to agree to their demand that she give testimony to the grand jury.

We know Chelsea Manning's name because she is a principled and fearless advocate for her beliefs. She is prepared to spend another nine months in confinement, and to bear the crushing debt of these unprecedented fines.... Senior U.S.. officials, including the Secretary of State and the President himself have publicly expressed their hostility toward her. It could not be more clear that the government wishes to punish Chelsea further for her 2010 disclosures. It could not be more clear that she will never comply with the grand jury.

Chelsea has already served half of the 18 month maximum that the government can hold her. She's about to spend another birthday in a jail cell. The US government has no legal justification for continuing to imprison her. This must stop. Sign the petition now to send the following letter to Judge Trenga demanding Chelsea Manning's immediate release.

To: Judge Anthony Trenga 
From: 

Dear Honorable Judge Trenga,

I am writing to ask you to recognize that continuing to keep Chelsea Manning behind bars is both futile and cruel. She is known to the world as a principled advocate, and everything she does and says demonstrates her strong will and commitment to her ideals. Her testimony in this grand jury is not needed, and her current incarceration appears to be an attempt to punish her further for past offenses. As she will never be convinced to betray her principles, even by jail time or burdensome fines, her imprisonment does not serve the interests of the grand jury, the government, the court, or the law.

Please make the right decision and order her release so that she may return to her community and heal in peace.

Questions and comments may be sent to info@freedomarchives...org


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Stop Kevin Cooper's Abuse by San Quentin Prison Guards!

https://www.change.org/p/san-quentin-warden-ronald-davis-stop-kevin-cooper-s-abuse-by-san-quentin-prison-guards-2ace89a7-a13e-44ab-b70c-c18acbbfeb59?recruiter=747387046&recruited_by_id=3ea6ecd0-69ba-11e7-b7ef-51d8e2da53ef&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=copylink&utm_campaign=petition_dashboard&use_react=false


On Wednesday, September 25, Kevin Cooper's cell at San Quentin Prison was thrown into disarray and his personal food dumped into the toilet by a prison guard, A. Young.


The cells on East Block Bayside, where Kevin's cell is, were all searched on September 25 during Mandatory Yard. Kevin spent the day out in the yard with other inmates. In a letter, Kevin described what he found when he returned:


"This cage was hit hard, like a hurricane was in here .. ... . little by little I started to clean up and put my personal items back inside the boxes that were not taken .. . .. I go over to the toilet, lift up the seatcover and to my surprise and shock the toilet was completely filled up with my refried beans, and my brown rice. Both were in two separate cereal bags and both cereal bags were full. The raisin bran cereal bags were gone, and my food was in the toilet!"


A bucket was eventually brought over and:


"I had to get down on my knees and dig my food out of the toilet with my hands so that I could flush the toilet. The food, which was dried refried beans and dried brown rice had absorbed the water in the toilet and had become cement hard. It took me about 45 minutes to get enough of my food out of the toilet before it would flush."


Even the guard working the tier at the time told Kevin, "K.C., that is f_cked up!"


A receipt was left in Kevin's cell identifying the guard who did this as A. Young. Kevin has never met Officer A.... Young, and has had no contact with him besides Officer Young's unprovoked act of harassment and psychological abuse...


Kevin Cooper has served over 34 years at San Quentin, fighting for exoneration from the conviction for murders he did not commit. It is unconscionable for him to be treated so disrespectfully by prison staff on top of the years of his incarceration.


No guard should work at San Quentin if they cannot treat prisoners and their personal belongings with basic courtesy and respect............. Kevin has filed a grievance against A. Young. Please:


1) Sign this petition calling on San Quentin Warden Ronald Davis to grant Kevin's grievance and discipline "Officer" A. Young.


2) Call Warden Ronald Davis at: (415) 454-1460 Ext. 5000. Tell him that Officer Young's behaviour was inexcusable, and should not be tolerated...


3) Call Yasir Samar, Associate Warden of Specialized Housing, at (415) 455-5037


4) Write Warden Davis and Lt. Sam Robinson (separately) at:


Main Street

San Quentin, CA 94964

5) Email Lt. Sam Robinson at: samuel.robinson2@cdcr............ca.gov



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Sign Global Petition to Dismiss Charges Against Anti-Nuclear Plowshares Activists Facing 25 Years

US ATTORNEY GENERAL WILLIAM BARR

This is an urgent request that you join with distinguished global supporters including Archbishop Desmond Tutu, other Nobel laureates and many others by signing our global petition to dismiss all charges against the Kings Bay Plowshares 7 (KBP7). They face 25 years in prison for exposing illegal and immoral nuclear weapons that threaten all life on Earth. The seven nonviolently and symbolically disarmed the Trident nuclear submarine base at Kings Bay, GA on April 4, 2018, the 50th anniversary of the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. (View KBP7 reading their statement here...)


This petition is also a plea for us all to be involved in rebuilding the anti-nuclear weapons movement that helped disarm the world's nuclear arsenals from 90,000 down to 15,000 weapons in the 1980s.. We must abolish them all. The KBP7 trial is expected to begin this fall in Georgia. Time is short. Please sign the petition and visit kingsbayplowshares7...org. Help KBP7 by forwarding their petition to your friends, to lists, and post it on social media...


The Kings Bay Plowshares 7 have offered us their prophetic witness. Now it's up to us!


In peace and solidarity,


The Kings Bay Plowshares 7 Support Committee

https://actionnetwork.org/petitions/sign-global-petition-to-dismiss-charges-against-anti-nuclear-plowshares-activists-facing-25-years?source=direct_link&




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Support the return of Leonard Peltier's Medicine Bundle


November 1, 2019


Dear Friends and supporters,

We need your help in getting Leonard Peltier's- (89637-132) Medicine Bundle returned to him. His Medicine Bundle includes: Pipe bowel, Pipe stem, Eagle feathers, sage and cedar. Leonard is at USP Coleman1, in Coleman FL. which has been locked down since mid-July. This lockdown has led to many "shakedowns" that is where the guards go in to a cell and check it for weapons. Leonard said in a legal letter,  that on"10/22/2019 the shakedown crew came to his cell and destroyed itThey came in and tore apart everything and threw out everything they couldjust because they couldThe most painfuland what caused me the most anger was when they took my religious itemsmyPipe (Chunapain myMedicine Bundleuse in my prayers."

Leonard's lawyer was immediately on top of the situation and asked us to hold off until he could reach Leonard's counselor and get the Bundlereturned.  I heard from the attorney last night and he said the prison has not returned Leonard his Medicine Bundle nor give them any reason for itbeing taken. 


Leonard Peltier as a citizen of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewaa federally recognized American Indian Nation is afforded all the legalprotections and rights pursuant to the American Indian Freedom of Religion Act codified at Title 42 United States Code 1996 et.seq.


I am asking if today you would send e-mails to Coleman I SR. Attorney J.C. DiNicola jcdinicola@bop.gov, public relations officer-COA/Publicinformation@bop.gov and to thenBOP-Southwest Regional office SERO/ExecAssistant@bop..gov requesting the return of Leonard Peltier 89637-132, Medicine Bundle... 


This lockdown has been extremely hard on Leonard and his Medicine Bundle is his way to help him maintain his relationship to his Creator!


Miigwech

Paulette Dauteuil ILPDC National Office

Sheridan Murphy- President of the ILPDC Board

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Freedom Archives 522 Valencia Street San Francisco, CA 94110 415 863......9977 https://freedomarchives..org/




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Leonard Peltier's 2019 Thanksgiving Message: "Walking on Stolen Land"

by Levi Rickert

Published November 23, 2019


COLEMAN, FLORIDA – Leonard Peltier, Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians, who is incarcerated at the U.S. Penitentiary in Coleman, Florida, for his 1977 conviction in connection with a shootout with U.S.............. government forces, where two FBI agents and one young American Indian lost their lives........

Peltier, who is considered a political prisoner of war by many, released this statement on Thanksgiving through the Leonard Peltier Defense Committee:


The year of 2019 is coming to a close and with it, comes the day most Americans set aside as a day for Thanksgiving. As I let my mind wander beyond the steel bars and concrete walls, I try to imagine what the people who live outside the prison gates are doing, and what they are thinking. Do they ever think of the Indigenous people who were forced from their homelands? Do they understand that with every step they take, no matter the direction, that they are walking on stolen land? Can they imagine, even for one minute, what it was like to watch the suffering of the women, the children and babies and yes, the sick and elderly, as they were made to keep pushing west in freezing temperatures, with little or no food? These were my people and this was our land... There was a time when we enjoyed freedom and were able to hunt buffalo and gather the foods and sacred medicines.. We were able to fish and we enjoyed the clean clear water! My people were generous, we shared everything we had, including the knowledge of how to survive the long harsh winters or the hot humid summers. We were appreciative of the gifts from our Creator and remembered to give thanks on a daily basis... We had ceremonies and special dances that were a celebration of life.


With the coming of foreigners to our shores, life as we knew it would change drastically. Individual ownership was foreign to my people............ Fences?? Unheard of, back then. We were a communal people and we took care of each other. Our grandparents weren't isolated from us! They were the wisdom keepers and story tellers and were an important link in our families.. The babies? They were and are our future! Look at the brilliant young people who put themselves at risk, fighting to keep our water and environment clean and safe for the generations yet to come.. They are willing to confront the giant, multi-national corporations by educating the general public of the devastation being caused.. I smile with hope when I think of them.. They are fearless and ready to speak the truth to all who are willing to listen.. We also remember our brothers and sisters of Bolivia, who are rioting, in support of the first Indigenous President, Evo Morales. His commitment to the people, the land, their resources and protection against corruption is commendable. We recognize and identify with that struggle so well..


So today, I thank all of the people who are willing to have an open mind, those who are willing to accept the responsibility of planning for seven generations ahead, those who remember the sacrifices made by our ancestors so we can continue to speak our own language, practice our own way of thankfulness in our own skin, and that we always acknowledge and respect the Indigenous linage that we carry..


For those of you who are thankful that you have enough food to feed your families, please give to those who aren't as fortunate. If you are warm and have a comfortable shelter to live in, please give to those who are cold and homeless, if you see someone hurting and in need of a kind word or two, be that person who steps forward and lends a hand. And especially, when you see injustice anywhere, please be brave enough to speak up to confront it.


I want to thank all who are kind enough to remember me and my family in your thoughts and prayers. Thank you for continuing to support and believe in me... There isn't a minute in any day that passes without me hoping that this will be the day I will be granted freedom. I long for the day when I can smell clean fresh air, when I can feel a gentle breeze in my hair, witness the clouds as their movement hides the sun and when the moon shines the light on the path to the sacred Inipi. That would truly be a day I could call a day of Thanksgiving.


Thank you for listening to whomever is voicing my words. My Spirit is there with you.


Doksha,

In the Spirit of Crazy Horse,

Leonard Peltier



Levi Rickert, a tribal citizen of the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation, is the publisher and editor of Native News Online. Previously, he served as editor of the Native News Network...... He is a resident of Grand Rapids, Michigan....


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Eddie Conway's Update on Forgotten Political Prisoners


EDDIE CONWAY: I'm Eddie Conway, host of Rattling the Bars. As many well-known political prisoners like Mumia Abu-Jamal continue to suffer in prison…

MUMIA ABU JAMAL: In an area where there is corporate downsizing and there are no jobs and there is only a service economy and education is being cut, which is the only rung by which people can climb, the only growth industry in this part of Pennsylvania, in the Eastern United States, in the Southern United States, in the Western United States is "corrections," for want of a better word. The corrections industry is booming. I mean, this joint here ain't five years old.

EDDIE CONWAY: …The media brings their stories to the masses.. But there are many lesser-known activists that have dropped out of the spotlight, grown old in prison, or just been forgotten..... For Rattling the Bars, we are spotlighting a few of their stories.... There was a thriving Black Panther party in Omaha, Nebraska, headed by David Rice and Ed Poindexter.... By 1968, the FBI had began plans to eliminate the Omaha Black Panthers by making an example of Rice and Poindexter. It would take a couple of years, but the FBI would frame them for murder.

KIETRYN ZYCHAL: In the 90s, Ed and Mondo both applied to the parole board. There are two different things you do in Nebraska, the parole board would grant you parole, but because they have life sentences, they were told that they have to apply to the pardons board, which is the governor, the attorney general, and the secretary of state, and ask that their life sentences be commuted to a specific number of years before they would be eligible for parole.

And so there was a movement in the 90s to try to get them out on parole.... The parole board would recommend them for parole because they were exemplary prisoners, and then the pardons board would not give them a hearing. They wouldn't even meet to determine whether they would commute their sentence..

EDDIE CONWAY: They served 45 years before Rice died in the Nebraska State Penitentiary. After several appeals, earning a master's degree, writing several books and helping other inmates, Poindexter is still serving time at the age of 75.

KEITRYN ZYCHAL: Ed Poindexter has been in jail or prison since August of 1970. He was accused of making a suitcase bomb and giving it to a 16-year-old boy named Duane Peak, and Duane Peak was supposed to take the bomb to a vacant house and call 911, and report that a woman was dragged screaming into a vacant house, and when police officers showed up, one of those police officers was killed when the suitcase bomb exploded........

Ed and his late co-defendant, Mondo we Langa, who was David Rice at the time of the trial, they have always insisted that they had absolutely nothing to do with this murderous plot, and they tried to get back into court for 50 years, and they have never been able to get back into court to prove their innocence. Mondo died in March of 2016 of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and Ed is going to turn 75 this year, I think......... And he has spent the majority of his life in prison.. It will be 50 years in 2020 that he will be in prison.

EDDIE CONWAY: There are at least 20 Black Panthers still in prison across the United States. One is one of the most revered is H. Rap Brown, known by his Islamic name, Jamil Al-Amin.

KAIRI AL-AMIN: My father has been a target for many, many, many, many, many, many, many, many years of the federal government, and I think him being housed these last 10 years in federal penitentiaries without federal charges show that the vendetta is still strong. The federal government has not forgotten who he was as H.. Rap Brown, or who he is as Imam Jamil Al-Amin..

JAMIL AL-AMIN: See, it's no in between.. You are either free or you're a slave. There's no such thing as second-class citizenship.

EDDIE CONWAY: Most people don't realize he's still in prison. He's serving a life sentence at the United States Penitentiary in Tucson...

KAIRI AL-AMIN: Our campaign is twofold.. One, how can egregious constitutional rights violations not warrant a new trial, especially when they were done by the prosecution... And two, my father is innocent. The facts point to him being innocent, which is why we're pushing for a new trial. We know that they can't win this trial twice... The reason they won the first time was because of the gag order that was placed on my father which didn't allow us to fight in the court of public opinion as well as the court of law.. And so when you don't have anyone watching, anything can be done without any repercussion.

EDDIE CONWAY: Another well-known political prisoner that has been forgotten in the media and in the public arena is Leonard Peltier. Leonard Peltier was a member of the American Indian Movement and has been in prison for over 40 years and is now 75 years old.

SPEAKER: Leonard Peltier represents, in a very real sense, the effort, the struggle by indigenous peoples within the United States to exercise their rights as sovereign nations, recognized as such in treaties with the United States.. For the government of the United States, which has colonized all indigenous peoples to claim boundaries, keeping Leonard in prison demonstrates the costs and consequences of asserting those rights.

EDDIE CONWAY: Leonard Peltier suffers from a host of medical issues including suffering from a stroke... And if he is not released, he will die in prison..

LEONARD PELTIER: I'll be an old man when I get out, if I get out.

PAULETTE D'AUTEUIL: His wellbeing is that he rarely gets a family visit. His children live in California and North Dakota. Both places are a good 2000 miles from where he's at in Florida, so it makes it time consuming as well as expensive to come and see him. He is, health-wise, we are still working on trying to get some help for his prostate, and there has been some development of some spots on his lungs, which we are trying to get resolved....... There's an incredible mold issue in the prison, especially because in Florida it's so humid and it builds up. So we're also dealing with that...

EDDIE CONWAY: These are just a few of the almost 20 political prisoners that has remained in American prisons for 30 and 40 years, some even longer. Mutulu Shakur has been in jail for long, long decades... Assata Shakur has been hiding and forced into exile in Cuba.. Sundiata has been in prison for decades; Veronza Bower, The Move Nine.... And there's just a number of political prisoners that's done 30 or 40 years.

They need to be released and they need to have an opportunity to be back with their family, their children, their grandchildren, whoever is still alive. Any other prisoners in the United States that have the same sort of charges as those people that are being held has been released up to 15 or 20 years ago. That same justice system should work for the political prisoners also.

Thank you for joining me for this episode of Rattling the Bars. I'm Eddie Conway.....



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Courage to Resist


Reality Winner, a whistleblower who helped expose foreign hacking of US election systems leading up to the 2016 presidential election, has been behind bars since June 2017. Supporters are preparing to file a petition of clemency in hopes of an early release. Reality's five year prison sentence is by far the longest ever given for leaking information to the media about a matter of public interest.......... Stand with Reality shirts, stickers, and more available. Please take a moment to sign the letter



Vietnam War combat veteran Daniel Shea on his time in Vietnam and the impact that Agent Orange and post traumatic stress had on him and his family since... Listen now

This Courage to Resist podcast was produced in collaboration with the Vietnam Full Disclosure effort of Veterans For Peace — "Towards an honest commemoration of the American war in Vietnam." This year marks 50 years of GI resistance, in and out of uniform, for many of the courageous individuals featured.. If you believe this history is important, please ...





COURAGE TO RESIST ~ SUPPORT THE TROOPS WHO REFUSE TO FIGHT!

484 Lake Park Ave #41, Oakland, California 94610 ~ 510-488-3559

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Mumia Abu-Jamal: New Chance for Freedom

Police and State Frame-Up Must Be Fully Exposed!

Mumia Abu-Jamal is innocent. Courts have ignored and suppressed evidence of his innocence for decades. But now, one court has thrown out all the decisions of the PA Supreme Court that denied Mumia's appeals against his unjust conviction during the years of 1998 to 2012! 

This ruling, by Judge Leon Tucker, was made because one judge on the PA Supreme Court during those years, Ronald Castille, was lacking the "appearance of impartiality." In plain English, he was clearly biased against Mumia. Before sitting on the PA Supreme Court, Castille had been District Attorney (or assistant DA) during the time of Mumia's frame-up and conviction, and had used his office to express a special interest in pursuing the death penalty for "cop-killers." Mumia was in the cross-hairs. Soon he was wrongly convicted and sent to death row for killing a police officer...

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Mumia Abu-Jamal is an award-winning and intrepid journalist, a former Black Panther, MOVE supporter, and a critic of police brutality and murder.  Mumia was framed by police, prosecutors, and leading elements of both Democratic and Republican parties, for the shooting of a police officer. The US Justice Department targeted him as well.. A racist judge helped convict him, and corrupt courts have kept him locked up despite much evidence that should have freed him. He continues his commentary and journalism from behind bars. As of 2019, he has been imprisoned for 37 years for a crime he did not commit. 

Time is up! FREE MUMIA NOW!

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DA's Hidden Files Show Frame-Up of Mumia

In the midst of Mumia's fight for his right to challenge the state Supreme Court's negative rulings, a new twist was revealed: six boxes of files on Mumia's case--with many more still hidden--were surreptitiously concealed for decades in a back room at the District Attorney's office in Philadelphia. The very fact that these files on Mumia's case were hidden away for decades is damning in the extreme, and their revelations confirm what we have known for decades: Mumia was framed for a crime he did not commit!

So far, the newly revealed evidence confirms that, at the time of Mumia's 1982 trial, chief prosecutor Joe McGill illegally removed black jurors from the jury, violating the Batson decision. Also revealed: The prosecution bribed witnesses into testifying that they saw Mumia shoot the slain police officer when they hadn't seen any such thing... Taxi driver Robert Chobert, who was on probation for fire-bombing a school yard at the time, had sent a letter demanding his money for lying on the stand.. Very important, but the newly revealed evidence is just the tip of the iceberg! 

All Evidence of Mumia's Innocence Must Be Brought Forward Now!

Mumia Abu-Jamal's trial for the murder of police officer Daniel Faulkner was rigged against him from beginning to end...... All of the evidence of Mumia's innocence--which was earlier suppressed or rejected--must now be heard:

• Mumia was framed - The judge at Mumia's trial, Albert Sabo, was overheard to say, "I'm gonna help 'em fry the n____r." And he proceeded to do just that.. Mumia was thrown out of his own trial for defending himself! Prosecution "witnesses" were coerced or bribed at trial to lie against Mumia.. In addition to Chobert, this included key witness Cynthia White, a prostitute who testified that she saw Mumia shoot Faulkner... White's statements had to be rewritten under intense pressure from the cops, because she was around the corner and out of sight of the shooting at the time! Police bribed her with promises of being allowed to work her corner, and not sent to state prison for her many prostitution charges.

• Mumia only arrived on the scene after Officer Faulkner was shot - William Singletary, a tow-truck business owner who had no reason to lie against the police, said he had been on the scene the whole time, that Mumia was not the shooter, and that Mumia had arrived only after the shooting of Faulkner. Singletary's statements were torn up, his business was wrecked, and he was threatened by police to be out of town for the trial (which, unfortunately, he was)...

• There is no evidence that Mumia fired a gun - Mumia was shot on the scene by an arriving police officer and arrested. But the cops did not test his hands for gun-powder residue--a standard procedure in shootings! They also did not test Faulkner's hands. The prosecution nevertheless claimed Mumia was the shooter, and that he was shot by Faulkner as the officer fell to the ground. Ballistics evidence was corrupted to falsely show that Mumia's gun was the murder weapon, when his gun was reportedly still in his taxi cab, which was in police custody days after the shooting!

• The real shooter fled the scene and was never charged - Veronica Jones was a witness who said that after hearing the shots from a block away, she had seen two people fleeing the scene of the shooting.... This could not have included Mumia, who had been shot and almost killed at the scene. Jones was threatened by the police with arrest and loss of custody of her children. She then lied on the stand at trial to say she had seen no one running away. 

• Abu-Jamal never made a confession - Mumia has always maintained his innocence. But police twice concocted confessions that Mumia never made. Inspector Alfonso Giordano, the senior officer at the crime scene, made up a confession for Mumia. But Giordano was not allowed to testify at trial, because he was top on the FBI's list of corrupt cops in the Philadelphia police force... At the DA's request, another cop handily provided a second "confession," allegedly heard by a security guard in the hospital.... But at neither time was Mumia--almost fatally shot--able to speak.. And an earlier police report by cops in the hospital said that, referring to Mumia: "the negro male made no comment"!

• The crime scene was tampered with by police - Police officers at the scene rearranged some evidence, and handled what was alleged to be Mumia's gun with their bare hands... A journalist's photos revealed this misconduct. The cops then left the scene unattended for hours. All of this indicates a frame-up in progress...

• The real shooter confessed, and revealed the reason for the crime - Arnold Beverly came forward in the 1990s. He said in a sworn statement, under penalty of perjury, that he, not Mumia, had been the actual shooter. He said that he, along with "another guy," had been hired to do the hit, because Faulkner was "a problem for the mob and corrupt policemen because he interfered with the graft and payoffs made to allow illegal activity including prostitution, gambling, drugs without prosecution in the center city area"! (affidavit of Arnold Beverly).

• The corruption of Philadelphia police is documented and well known - This includes that of Giordano, who was the first cop to manufacture a "confession" by Mumia. Meanwhile, Faulkner's cooperation with the federal anti-corruption investigations of Philadelphia police is strongly suggested by his lengthy and heavily redacted FBI file...

• Do cops kill other cops? There are other cases in Philadelphia that look that way. Frank Serpico, an NYC cop who investigated and reported on police corruption, was abandoned by fellow cops after being shot in a drug bust. Mumia was clearly made a scape-goat for the crimes of corrupt Philadelphia cops who were protecting their ill-gotten gains.

• Politicians and US DOJ helped the frame-up - Ed Rendell, former DA, PA governor, and head of the Democratic National Committee--and now a senior advisor to crime-bill author Joe Biden--is complicit in the frame-up of Mumia. The US Justice Department targeted Mumia for his anti-racist activities when he was a teenager, and later secretly warned then-prosecutor Rendell not to use Giordano as a witness against Mumia because he was an FBI target for corruption.

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All this should lead to an immediate freeing of Mumia! But we are still a ways away from that, and we have no confidence in the capitalist courts to finish the job. We must act! This victory in local court allowing new appeals must now lead to a full-court press on all the rejected and suppressed evidence of Mumia's innocence!

Mass Movement Needed To Free Mumia! 

Mumia's persecution by local, state and federal authorities of both political parties has been on-going, and has generated a world-wide movement in his defense.. This movement has seen that Mumia, as a radio journalist who exposed the brutal attacks on the black community by the police in Philadelphia, has spoken out as a defender of working people of all colors and all nationalities in his ongoing commentaries (now on KPFA/Pacifica radio), despite being on death row, and now while serving life without the possibility of parole (LWOP)..

In 1999, Oakland Teachers for Mumia held unauthorized teach-ins in Oakland schools on Mumia and the death penalty, despite the rabid hysteria in the bourgeois media. Teachers in Rio de Janeiro held similar actions. Letters of support came in from maritime workers and trade unions around the world.. Later in 1999, longshore workers shut down all the ports on the West Coast to free Mumia, and led a mass march of 25,000 Mumia supporters in San Francisco......... 

A year later, a federal court lifted Mumia's death sentence, based on improper instructions to the jury by trial judge Albert Sabo.. The federal court ordered the local court to hold a new sentencing hearing... Fearing their frame-up of Mumia could be revealed in any new hearing, even if only on sentencing, state officials passed. Much to the chagrin of the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP)--which still seeks Mumia's death--this left Mumia with LWOP, death by life in prison.. 

Mumia supporters waged a struggle to get him the cure for the deadly Hepatitis-C virus, which he had likely contracted through a blood transfusion in hospital after he was shot by a cop at the 1981 crime scene. The Labor Action Committee conducted demonstrations against Gilead Sciences, the Foster City CA corporation that owns the cure, and charged $1,000 per pill! The Metalworkers Union of South Africa wrote a letter excoriating Governor Wolf for allowing untreated sick freedom fighters to die in prison as the apartheid government had done. Finally, Mumia did get the cure.. Now, more than ever, struggle is needed to free Mumia!

Now is the Time: Mobilize Again for Mumia's Freedom!

Labor Action Committee To Free Mumia Abu-Jamal


Labor Action Committee to Free Mumia Abu-Jamal | Mumia Abu-Jamal is an I.....



November 2019


"There is no time for despair, no need for silence, no room for fear. We speak, we write, we do language.. This is how civilizations heal."


-Toni Morrison


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Board Game

https://www.thegamecrafter.com/games/race-for-solidarity


Solidarity against racism has existed from the 1600's and continues until today

An exciting board game of chance, empathy and wisdom, that entertains and educates as it builds solidarity through learning about the destructive history of American racism and those who always fought back. Appreciate the anti-racist solidarity of working people, who built and are still building, the great progressive movements of history.. There are over 200 questions, with answers and references.

Spread the word!!

By Dr. Nayvin Gordon



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Action Alert for Shaka Shakur

Urgent Action Alert: Stop Prison Officials from Blocking Shaka Shakur's Access to Educational and Vocational Services


Shaka Shakur is a politically active, incarcerated, New Afrikan who was transferred on December 18th, 2018, from the Indiana Department of Corrections (IDOC) to the Virginia Department of Corrections (VADOC) as part of campaign to neutralize his activism by prison officials. This transfer was done in violation of his due process rights as a prisoner. He is currently incarcerated at the Sussex 1 State Prison in Waverly, Virginia... His VA DOC # is 135647..........  Since being held there, his right to access educational and vocational programs has been violated. Below is a summary of these violations in Shaka's own words:


"1) i was moved out of the state of Indiana against my will in violation of Indiana Code and due process.. i was never afforded any form of hearing where i was informed as to why i was being shipped out of state nor allowed to present evidence challenging the decision to move me...


2) Upon my arrival to the prison system in Virginia, i was never given any form of orientation.. I've never been informed as to what my rights are, nor informed as to how i can go about challenging any decision made by the state of Va. I've only been informed that the state of Va has custody of my body and that all decisions pertaining to my classification, security level and placement was being determined and controlled by the state of Indiana and its Department of Corrections (IDOC).


3) There is supposed to be an IDOC liaison that oversees my placement in Va and communicates with an official in the Virginia Department of Corrections (VDOC) named Ms. Collins. She has refused to respond to any and all efforts to contact her by myself or any outside sources.... Any questions i've had pertaining to video visits, security level, placement, and classification have gone unanswered except for being told that it is up to Indiana.


4) Per Indiana Code i am supposed to be afforded the same rights and privileges as if i was still in Indiana. That includes jobs, programming, religious services etc....s To deny me such is a const violation and discrimination.... In fact, it denies me equal protection under the law. I am not being allowed to find a job outside of the housing unit.. i'm being told that i'm not going to be allowed to drop my security level even though my points will drop as low as 10 points in Va and less than 15 in indiana. Both of which would qualify me for a level 3 security level placement.


5) The counselor Ponce falsified my classification review/progress report by lying and saying that i had assaulted a staff member within the last 12 months. This was in order to justify my continued placement at a level 4/5 prison. When this was brought to her attention, she pretended that she had corrected it and instead further falsified the report and then blamed it on Indiana.. i have copies of these documents and my lawyer have the originals [see images posted in event below]."


Furthermore:


6) The doctors at Sussex 1 have not been provided with Shaka's medical records past 2014... Shaka experiences nerve and other issues due to a degenerative disc on which he has been operated. Without these records he cannot be provided with the necessary care for his chronic condition.


7)There is no appeals process available to Shaka or any other out-of-state inmate. Indiana code establishes the sender state [Indiana] as having unchallenged authority in cases of interstate transfer. Having access only to internal grievance procedures in Virginia, Shaka is unable to appeal decisions made in Indiana


You can read about Shaka's long history of activism and rebellious activity in Indiana prisons here and here..


What You Can Do to Support Shaka:


On Monday, 11/11, call  the Indiana DOC Executive Director of Classification Jack Hendrix at (317) 232-2247. Leave a message with whoever you are able to speak to, or a voicemail. You can also email Jack Hendrix at jdhendrix@idoc.in...gov..


Please tell them to drop Shaka's  security level dropped to a level 3 for which he qualifies so that he can access vocational and educational programs, or to authorize Shaka's lateral transfer to a facility where he can be allowed to participate in vocational and educational programs...........


As Shaka stated:


"How am i supposed to work my way back to Indiana if i'm not being allowed to participate in anything positive or constructive?"


To make a donation to Shaka Shakur's legal defense fund and for more info on his case, go to https://www.....gofundme.com/f/shaka-shakur-legal-defense-fund


For more information, contact Seth Donnelly at sethdonnelly2000@yahoo..com.......



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50 years in prison: 

ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!!


FREE Chip Fitzgerald 

Grandfather, Father, Elder, Friend

former Black Panther 

              

Romaine "Chip" Fitzgerald has been in prison since he was locked up 50 years ago...... A former member of the Black Panther Party, Chip is now 70 years old, and suffering the consequences of a serious stroke. He depends on a wheelchair for his mobility. He has appeared before the parole board 17 times, but they refuse to release him..


NOW is the time for Chip to come home!


In September 1969, Chip and two other Panthers were stopped by a highway patrolman..... During the traffic stop, a shooting broke out, leaving Chip and a police officer both wounded. Chip was arrested a month later and charged with attempted murder of the police and an unrelated murder of a security guard. Though the evidence against him was weak and Chip denied any involvement, he was convicted and sentenced to death.


In 1972, the California Supreme Court outlawed the death penalty... Chip and others on Death Row had their sentences commuted to Life imprisonment with the possibility of parole. All of them became eligible for parole after serving 7 more years..... But Chip was rejected for parole, as he has been ever since. 


Parole for Lifers basically stopped under Governors Deukmajian, Wilson, and Davis (1983-2003), resulting in increasing numbers of people in prison and 23 new prisons. People in prison filed lawsuits in federal courts: people were dying as a result of the overcrowding.. To rapidly reduce the number of people in prison, the court mandated new parole hearings:

·        for anyone 60 years or older who had served 25 years or more;

·        for anyone convicted before they were 23 years old;

·        for anyone with disabilities 


Chip qualified for a new parole hearing by meeting all three criteria.


But the California Board of Parole Hearings has used other methods to keep Chip locked up. Although the courts ordered that prison rule infractions should not be used in parole considerations, Chip has been denied parole because he had a cellphone...


Throughout his 50 years in prison, Chip has been denied his right to due process – a new parole hearing as ordered by Federal courts. He is now 70, and addressing the challenges of a stroke victim. His recent rules violation of cellphone possession were non-violent and posed no threat to anyone. He has never been found likely to commit any crimes if released to the community – a community of his children, grandchildren, friends and colleagues who are ready to support him and welcome him home.


The California Board of Parole Hearings is holding Chip hostage....


We call on Governor Newsom to release Chip immediately.


What YOU can do to support this campaign to FREE CHIP:



1)   Sign and circulate the petition to FREE Chip. Download it at https://www.change.org/p/california-free-chip-fitzgerald

Print out the petition and get signatures at your workplace, community meeting, or next social gathering.


2)   Write an email to Governor Newsom's office (sample message at:https://docs..google.com/document/d/1iwbP_eQEg2J1T2h-tLKE-Dn2ZfpuLx9MuNv2z605DMc/edit?usp=sharing


3)   Write to Chip: 

 Romaine "Chip" Fitzgerald #B27527,

CSP-LAC

P.O. Box 4490

B-4-150

Lancaster, CA 93539


--

Freedom Archives 522 Valencia Street San Francisco, CA 94110 415 863........9977 https://freedomarchives.org/



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Support Chuck Africa for Parole

Michael Africa Jr. started this petition to Pennsylvania Governor


Charles Sims Africa #AM 4975 has been in prison since age 18... He is now 59 years old and a recovering cancer patient. He has been eligible for parole since 2008 but continually denied because of  his political views.

Charles has 8 codefendants. Two has died in prison, four has been released from prison onto parole..... Chuck's sister Debbie Sims Africa is one of the four codefendants released onto parole.

Since coming home from prison, Debbie is thriving. Our community of support has supported Debbie to excel and we are committed to do the same for Chuck so that he can excel as well. 

http://chng.it/Yprs8pXBBp


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Move 9 member Delbert Orr Africa freed after 42 years in prison

Ed Pilkington - January 18, 2020


One of the great open wounds of the 1970s black liberation struggle came closer to being healed on Saturday with the release of Delbert Orr Africa, a member of the Move 9 group who has been imprisoned for 42 years for a crime he says he did not commit.

Del Africa walked free from Pennsylvania's state correctional institution, Dallas, on Saturday morning after a long struggle to convince parole authorities to release him. He is the eighth of the nine Move members – five men and four women – to be released or to have died while in prison.

Only one of the nine, Chuck Africa, remains behind bars.

The nine were arrested and sentenced to 30 years to life following a dramatic police siege of their communal home in Philadelphia which culminated with a shootout on 8 August 1978. In the maelstrom a police officer, James Ramp, was killed with a single bullet. Move has always denied that any of its members were responsible.....

Brad Thomson, a member of Del Africa's legal team, said the decision to release him on parole "affirms what the movement to free the Move 9 has been arguing for decades: that their continued incarceration is unjust".

Thomson added: "With the release of Delbert, that leaves Charles 'Chuck' Africa as the last member of the Move 9 to still be in prison. Chuck went before the parole board last month and we are optimistic that he will be released in the very near future."

The Guardian told the story of Del Africa and his fellow Move 9 member Janine Phillips Africa in a series of articles on black radicals who have been incarcerated for decades as a result of their activities in the 1960s, 70s and 80s.

Move was formed in Philadelphia as a group of black radicals committed not only to the liberation from racial oppression, in tune with the Black Panther party of the time, but also to environmentalist and back-to-nature ideals. They lived, as they still do today, as a family, taking "Africa" as their shared last name.

Over two years, from prison, Del Africa related his story to the Guardian in emails and a three-hour interview. He recounted how he became engaged in the black struggle when a girlfriend introduced him to the Black Panther Party in Chicago in the late 1960s.

Later, he moved to Philadelphia and drifted into Move. He was inside the Move house in Powelton Village in the summer of 1978 when it came under police siege.

The city, under a notoriously brutal mayor, Frank Rizzo, wanted to evict the group on the grounds that they were a nuisance and an affront to public decency.

When the shootout broke out, police went in with guns and water cannon. Del Africa provided one of the astonishing images of the black liberation struggle when he emerged from the house with his arms outstretched, as if on the cross, while a police officer jabbed a rifle in his neck.

Video footage shows two officers throwing him to the ground and kicking him on the head, which bounces between them like a ball.

Africa described the event: "A cop hit me with his helmet.. Smashed my eye. Another cop swung his shotgun and broke my jaw.. I went down, and after that I don't remember anything till I came to and a dude was dragging me by my hair and cops started kicking me in the head."

For six years of his incarceration, Delbert Africa was put in an infamous solitary confinement wing known by prisoners as the "dungeon"... His isolation was imposed because he refused to have his dreadlocks cut – part of the Move philosophy.

He recalled in Guardian interviews how he survived in solitary confinement by developing a black history quiz with other prisoners, which they would play by tapping out messages. Other prisoners joined the game, which asked questions like: when was the Brown v Board of Education ruling in the US supreme court? What year was the Black Panther party founded? Who was Dred Scott? For what is John Brown remembered?

In 1985, when Del Africa had been in prison for almost seven years, tragedy struck again. He learned that Philadelphia police had conducted a second siege on the Move communal home, which was now located in Osage Avenue..

On this occasion, the police dropped an incendiary bomb from a helicopter. The bomb ignited a fire that spread through the overwhelmingly African American neighborhood.

City leaders allowed the fire to rage. Sixty-one houses were razed and 11 people in the Move house were killed, including five children. One of the survivors, Ramona Africa, was badly burned. She was duly put on trial and sentenced to seven years in prison..

One of the children who died was Delisha, Del Africa's 13-year-old daughter.. He told the Guardian how he responded to the news that she had been killed in an inferno: "I just cried. I wanted to strike out.. I wanted to wreak as much havoc as I could until they put me down. That anger, it brought such a feeling of helplessness. Like, dang! What to do now? Dark times."

With the 35th anniversary of the bombing approaching in May, Del Africa is free.. At the end of the Guardian's interview with him, he described how he had managed to endure four decades behind bars.

"I keep staying on the move. Stagnation is the worst thing. I'm on the move, and I hope you are too," he said.

"We've suffered the worst that this system can throw at us – decades of imprisonment, loss of loved ones. So we know we are strong. For all of that, we are still here and I look on that with pride."


Questions and comments may be sent to info@freedomarchives.org




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On Abortion: From Facebook


Best explanation I've heard so far....., Copied from a friend who copied from a friend who copied............, "Last night, I was in a debate about these new abortion laws being passed in red states. My son stepped in with this comment which was a show stopper. One of the best explanations I have read:, , 'Reasonable people can disagree about when a zygote becomes a "human life" - that's a philosophical question.. However, regardless of whether or not one believes a fetus is ethically equivalent to an adult, it doesn't obligate a mother to sacrifice her body autonomy for another, innocent or not..., , Body autonomy is a critical component of the right to privacy protected by the Constitution, as decided in Griswold v. Connecticut (1965), McFall v.. Shimp (1978), and of course Roe v. Wade (1973).. Consider a scenario where you are a perfect bone marrow match for a child with severe aplastic anemia; no other person on earth is a close enough match to save the child's life, and the child will certainly die without a bone marrow transplant from you. If you decided that you did not want to donate your marrow to save the child, for whatever reason, the state cannot demand the use of any part of your body for something to which you do not consent... It doesn't matter if the procedure required to complete the donation is trivial, or if the rationale for refusing is flimsy and arbitrary, or if the procedure is the only hope the child has to survive, or if the child is a genius or a saint or anything else - the decision to donate must be voluntary to be constitutional... This right is even extended to a person's body after they die; if they did not voluntarily commit to donate their organs while alive, their organs cannot be harvested after death, regardless of how useless those organs are to the deceased or how many lives they would save..., , That's the law.., , Use of a woman's uterus to save a life is no different from use of her bone marrow to save a life - it must be offered voluntarily........ By all means, profess your belief that providing one's uterus to save the child is morally just, and refusing is morally wrong...... That is a defensible philosophical position, regardless of who agrees and who disagrees.... But legally, it must be the woman's choice to carry out the pregnancy.., , She may choose to carry the baby to term... She may choose not to. Either decision could be made for all the right reasons, all the wrong reasons, or anything in between... But it must be her choice, and protecting the right of body autonomy means the law is on her side.. Supporting that precedent is what being pro-choice means....", , Feel free to copy/paste and re-post., y

Sent from my iPhone


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Celebrating the release of Janet and Janine Africa

Take action now to support Jalil A.... Muntaqim's release





Jalil A.... Muntaqim was a member of the Black Panther Party and has been a political prisoner for 48 years since he was arrested at the age of 19 in 1971. He has been denied parole 11 times since he was first eligible in 2002, and is now scheduled for his 12th parole hearing. Additionally, Jalil has filed to have his sentence commuted to time served by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo. Visit Jalil's support page, check out his writing and poetry, and Join Critical Resistance in supporting a vibrant intergenerational movement of freedom fighters in demanding his release.


48 years is enough. Write, email, call, and tweet at Governor Cuomo in support of Jalil's commutation and sign this petition demanding his release.


http://freedomarchives.org/Support.Jalil/Campaign.html

Write:

The Honorable Andrew M. Cuomo

Governor of the State of New York

Executive Chamber State Capital Building

Albany, New York 12224


Michelle Alexander – Author, The New Jim Crow; Ed Asner - Actor and Activist; Charles Barron - New York Assemblyman, 60th District; Inez Barron - Counci member, 42nd District, New York City Council; Rosa Clemente - Scholar Activist and 2008 Green Party Vice-Presidential candidate; Patrisse Cullors – Co-Founder Black Lives Matter, Author, Activist; Elena Cohen - President, National Lawyers Guild; "Davey D" Cook - KPFA Hard Knock Radio; Angela Davis - Professor Emerita, University of California, Santa Cruz; Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz - Native American historian, writer and feminist; Mike Farrell - Actor and activist; Danny Glover – Actor and activist; Linda Gordon - New York University; Marc Lamont Hill - Temple University; Jamal Joseph - Columbia University; Robin D.G. Kelley - University of California, Los Angeles; Tom Morello - Rage Against the Machine; Imani Perry - Princeton University; Barbara Ransby - University of Illinois, Chicago; Boots Riley - Musician, Filmmaker; Walter Riley - Civil rights attorney; Dylan Rodriguez - University of California, Riverside, President American Studies Association; Maggie Siff, Actor; Heather Ann Thompson - University of Michigan; Cornel West - Harvard University; Institutional affiliations listed for identification purposes only.


Call: 1-518-474-8390


Email Gov..... Cuomo with this form


Tweet at @NYGovCuomo

Any advocacy or communications to Gov. Cuomo must refer to Jalil as:

ANTHONY JALIL BOTTOM, 77A4283,

Sullivan Correctional Facility,

P.O. Box 116,

Fallsburg, New York 12733-0116




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Funds for Kevin Cooper

https://www.gofundme.....com/funds-for-kevin-cooper?member=1994108


For 34 years, an innocent man has been on death row in California.. 


Kevin Cooper was wrongfully convicted of the brutal 1983 murders of the Ryen family and houseguest. The case has a long history of police and prosecutorial misconduct, evidence tampering, and numerous constitutional violations including many incidences of the prosecution withholding evidence of innocence from the defense. You can learn more here ... 


In December 2018 Gov. Brown ordered  limited DNA testing and in February 2019, Gov.... Newsom ordered additional DNA testing. Meanwhile, Kevin remains on Death Row at San Quentin Prison.. 


The funds raised will be used to help Kevin purchase art supplies for his paintings ........ Additionally, being in prison is expensive, and this money would help Kevin pay for stamps, paper, toiletries, supplementary food, and/or phone calls...


Please help ease the daily struggle of an innocent man on death row!






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Don't extradite Assange!

To the government of the UK

Julian Assange, through Wikileaks, has done the world a great service in documenting American war crimes, its spying on allies and other dirty secrets of the world's most powerful regimes, organisations and corporations. This has not endeared him to the American deep state.... Both Obama, Clinton and Trump have declared that arresting Julian Assange should be a priority.. We have recently received confirmation [1] that he has been charged in secret so as to have him extradited to the USA as soon as he can be arrested. 

Assange's persecution, the persecution of a publisher for publishing information [2] that was truthful and clearly in the interest of the public - and which has been republished in major newspapers around the world - is a danger to freedom of the press everywhere, especially as the USA is asserting a right to arrest and try a non-American who neither is nor was then on American soil. The sentence is already clear: if not the death penalty then life in a supermax prison and ill treatment like Chelsea Manning... The very extradition of Julian Assange to the United States would at the same time mean the final death of freedom of the press in the West.... 

The courageous nation of Ecuador has offered Assange political asylum within its London embassy for several years until now. However, under pressure by the USA, the new government has made it clear that they want to drive Assange out of the embassy and into the arms of the waiting police as soon as possible... They have already curtailed his internet and his visitors and turned the heating off, leaving him freezing in a desolate state for the past few months and leading to the rapid decline of his health, breaching UK obligations under the European Convention of Human Rights. Therefore, our demand both to the government of Ecuador and the government of the UK is: don't extradite Assange to the US! Guarantee his human rights, make his stay at the embassy as bearable as possible and enable him to leave the embassy towards a secure country as soon as there are guarantees not to arrest and extradite him.. Furthermore, we, as EU voters, encourage European nations to take proactive steps to protect a journalist in danger.. The world is still watching.

[1] https://www.nytimes.com/2018/11/16/us/politics/julian-assange-indictment-wikileaks....html

[2] https://theintercept.com/2018/11/16/as-the-obama-doj-concluded-prosecution-of-julian-assange-for-publishing-documents-poses-grave-threats-to-press-freedom/

https://internal.diem25...org/en/petitions/1


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Words of Wisdom



Louis Robinson Jr., 77

Recording secretary for Local 1714 of the United Auto Workers from 1999 to 2018, with the minutes from a meeting of his union's retirees' chapter.


"One mistake the international unions in the United States made was when Ronald Reagan fired the air traffic controllers. When he did that, the unions could have brought this country to a standstill...... All they had to do was shut down the truck drivers for a month, because then people would not have been able to get the goods they needed. So that was one of the mistakes they made. They didn't come together as organized labor and say: "No.... We aren't going for this..... Shut the country down." That's what made them weak. They let Reagan get away with what he did. A little while after that, I read an article that said labor is losing its clout, and I noticed over the years that it did. It happened.. It doesn't feel good..."


[On the occasion of the shut-down of the Lordstown, Ohio GM plant March 6, 2019..]

https://www....nytimes.com/interactive/2019/05/01/magazine/lordstown-general-motors-plant..html


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Get Malik Out of Ad-Seg




Keith "Malik" Washington is an incarcerated activist who has spoken out on conditions of confinement in Texas prison and beyond:  from issues of toxic water and extreme heat, to physical and sexual abuse of imprisoned people, to religious discrimination and more...  Malik has also been a tireless leader in the movement to #EndPrisonSlavery which gained visibility during nationwide prison strikes in 2016 and 2018..  View his work at comrademalik.com or write him at:


Keith H. Washington
TDC# 1487958
McConnell Unit
3001 S......... Emily Drive
Beeville, TX 78102

Friends, it's time to get Malik out of solitary confinement.


Malik has experienced intense, targeted harassment ever since he dared to start speaking against brutal conditions faced by incarcerated people in Texas and nationwide--but over the past few months, prison officials have stepped up their retaliation even more.


In Administrative Segregation (solitary confinement) at McConnell Unit, Malik has experienced frequent humiliating strip searches, medical neglect, mail tampering and censorship, confinement 23 hours a day to a cell that often reached 100+ degrees in the summer, and other daily abuses too numerous to name..  It could not be more clear that they are trying to make an example of him because he is a committed freedom fighter.  So we have to step up.



Who to contact:

TDCJ Executive Director Bryan Collier

Phone: (936)295-6371


Senior Warden Philip Sinfuentes (McConnell Unit)

Phone: (361) 362-2300

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MAJOR TILLERY FILES NEW LEGAL PETITION

SEX FOR LIES AND MANUFACTURED TESTIMONY



April 25, 2018-- The arrest of two young men in Starbucks for the crime of "sitting while black," and the four years prison sentence to rapper Meek Mill for a minor parole violation are racist outrages in Philadelphia, PA that made national news in the past weeks. Yesterday Meek Mills was released on bail after a high profile defense campaign and a Pa Supreme Court decision citing evidence his conviction was based solely on a cop's false testimony...

These events underscore the racism, frame-up, corruption and brutality at the core of the criminal injustice system. Pennsylvania "lifer" Major Tillery's fight for freedom puts a spotlight on the conviction of innocent men with no evidence except the lying testimony of jailhouse snitches who have been coerced and given favors by cops and prosecutors.....


Sex for Lies and Manufactured Testimony

For thirty-five years Major Tillery has fought against his 1983 arrest, then conviction and sentence of life imprisonment without parole for an unsolved 1976 pool hall murder and assault...... Major Tillery's defense has always been his innocence.... The police and prosecution knew Tillery did not commit these crimes.. Jailhouse informant Emanuel Claitt gave lying testimony that Tillery was one of the shooters..


In May and June 2016, Emanuel Claitt gave sworn statements that his testimony was a total lie, and that the homicide cops and the prosecutors told him what to say and coached him before trial. Not only was he coerced to lie that Major Tillery was a shooter, but to lie and claim there were no plea deals made in exchange for his testimony. He provided the information about the specific homicide detectives and prosecutors involved in manufacturing his testimony and details about being allowed "sex for lies".. In August 2016, Claitt reaffirmed his sworn statements in a videotape, posted on YouTube and on JusticeforMajorTillery...org.


Major Tillery has Fought his Conviction and Advocated for Other Prisoners for over 30 Years


Major Tillery Needs Your Help:



HOW YOU CAN HELP

    Financial Support—Tillery's investigation is ongoing..... He badly needs funds to fight for his freedom...

    Go to JPay...com;

    code: Major Tillery AM9786 PADOC


    Tell Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner:

    The Conviction Review Unit should investigate Major Tillery's case. He is innocent.. The only evidence at trial was from lying jail house informants who now admit it was false.

    Call: 215-686-8000 or


    Write to:

    Security Processing Center

    Major Tillery AM 9786

    268 Bricker Road

    Bellefonte, PA 16823

    For More Information, Go To: JusticeForMajorTillery.org

    Call/Write:

    Kamilah Iddeen (717) 379-9009, Kamilah29@yahoo.com

    Rachel Wolkenstein (917) 689-4009, RachelWolkenstein@gmail..com





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    Articles:



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    1) John Carlos Responds to the New Olympics Ban on Political Protest

    by Dave Zirin

    The 1968 Olympian points out the hypocrisy of new rules against any political demonstrations on the field or medal stand. 

    John Carlos, right, and Tommie Smith, center, raise gloved fists in protest at the 1968 Summer Olympics.. (AP Photo)


    Olympic athletes competing in Tokyo have been put on notice.. They are there to be seen and not heard. A new list of restrictions against political speech or gestures was released on Thursday by the International Olympic Committee (IOC). The move is as arrogant as it is censorious.. Any athlete who may have planned to take a knee like Colin Kaepernick, or raise their fist like John Carlos or Tommie Smith in 1968, will have to think again. Make a gesture of solidarity with your oppressed brethren in your home country as 2016 Olympian Feyisa Lilesa did and you could find yourself ostracized.

    The actual punishments for political speech are opaque but threatening, the IOC saying that such will be determined on a "case by case basis." In the official statement, Olympic organizers write:

    "The unique nature of the Olympic Games enables athletes from all over the world to come together in peace and harmony. We believe that the example we set by competing with the world's best while living in harmony in the Olympic Village is a uniquely positive message to send to an increasingly divided world. This is why it is important, on both a personal and a global level, that we keep the venues, the Olympic Village and the podium neutral and free from any form of political, religious or ethnic demonstrations."

    There is something particularly ironic about the fact that the US Olympic and Paralympic Committee (USOPC) just admitted John Carlos and Tommie Smith into its Hall of Fame last November, 51 years after they raised their fists on the medal stand in 1968. The ceremony was meant to be a celebration of reconciliation and a tacit acknowledgment by the USOPC that it was wrong to ostracize the two runners. This new ruling sends a hell of a message that the "Olympic movement" wants to absorb the protest into the past and criminalize it for the present and future.

    I spoke to John Carlos on the phone and, as one might expect, he was livid. Here's what he told me:


    "This is nonsense. They're way out of line with this. They're trying to take people's rights away and it's ridiculous. They are saying that they don't want politics at the Olympics but this is a political move.. The silencing of people is political. We all love the Olympics but I'm not sacrificing my humanity to win a medal. Every time they go to different nation for a different Olympics, are you going to tell me that the choice of the country isn't politically motivated? I ain't buying that. The athlete should be able to make a statement on that medal stand. They are not disrespecting a flag. They are using their time to do what they think is right. They are trying to save lives. No one has the right to take away what's inside you or silence what you want to say." 


    I asked Carlos how he squares being inducted into the USOPC Hall of Fame and then given this anti-political crackdown. He said:


    "It shows that if you stand with it, you'll be accepted in time.. But people have to have the courage to step up. I've done mine.. I've been stepping up and living by the truth of that gesture for 51 years. It's time for that next generation to step up and show their moral character…If you think all is fine, and you go to the Olympic Games with your mouth zipped, you'll find you'll regret it."

     

    The brazen contradiction is of course that the Olympics are already political from top to bottom. They are political in the host country, where the head of state makes the argument that the Olympics will benefit the country economically. Government leaders also inevitably argue for national unity in support of the games, no matter how much debt is accrued, how much militarization is demanded, and how many people are displaced. The games are are political for the sponsors who use the Olympics to hawk their products, in a process one could call "sin washing." Sponsors like McDonald's—which pushes the utter opposite of an Olympic diet—sell their wares and benefit from the warm glow emitted by the Olympics. The games are political for the environment, which suffers a gigantic global footprint during the course of the Games. And in this era of political athletes, there is of course something political about an edict that aims to shut them down.

    I reached out to Jules Boykoff, author of four books on the Olympics, including the forthcoming NOlympians: Inside the Fight Against Capitalist Mega-Sports in Los Angeles, Tokyo, and Beyond. He said:

    "The IOC's edict, as laundered through its Athletes Commission, brims with hypocrisy. Athlete activism emerges from overlapping systems of injustice. To deny athletes the right to express their thoughts and feelings on the political injustices that wrack the world today reeks of authoritarianism, which is political in itself. This policy is a slap in the face to the exciting zeitgeist of smart, savvy athletes who are not willing to check their brains in at the Olympic door."

    One thing is certain. As long as athletes are willing to confront their fear and risk punishment to speak their truth, this issue is going nowhere.


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    2) War Has Ripple Effects

    i am a military widow. I know what the true cost of conflict is..

    By Karie Fugett, January 17, 2020

    https://www.nytimes.com/2020/01/17/opinion/war-has-ripple-effects.html?action=click&module=Opinion&pgtype=Homepage


    Illustration by Nicholas Konrad; photographs by Karie Fugett


    DRAIN, Ore. — The first thing I saw when I walked into the viewing room was my husband's nose.. The familiar curve of it extended above the sides of the coffin his mother and I had chosen only days before.

    My legs went limp, and I fell to the ground. Justin, a wounded Marine and friend of my husband, knelt and wrapped his arms around me as I cried.

    "I'm sorry," he said. "I'm so sorry."

    Hours later, in exchange for my husband, he handed me an American flag folded like origami into a perfect triangle.

    I buried Cpl. Jimmy Cleveland Kinsey II on April 26, 2010, when I was 24 years old. His body rests in Summerdale, Ala., only minutes from the town where we met when we were 13 and 14 years old.


    War has ripple effects, and my life has been irrevocably changed because of our continuing conflicts in the Middle East.

    Cleve had been wounded in Ramadi, Iraq, nearly four years earlier on April 1, 2006, nine days before the three-month mark of our marriage. At first, he survived. He had been driving a Humvee when it was hit by a roadside bomb. His door was blown clean off, the massive vehicle thrown onto its side. His leg was shattered...

    He was flown to the States immediately. I drove through the night from Camp Lejeune, N.C., to Bethesda Naval Hospital in Maryland to be with him.

    I'd never seen Cleve so frail. His leg was being held together with what looked like plastic wrap and his body was covered in tubes and wires. He reached his arms toward me. "There she is," he said, and we kissed..

    That week, a doctor called me a "caregiver" for the first time. This word would become my identity.

    The doctors at Bethesda Naval Hospital did the best they could to salvage his leg. After a year and a half of countless surgeries, a bone infection set in. His lower left leg had to be amputated. He was devastated.


    Cleve was in so much pain. He described his pain as always being there, something he wasn't sure would ever go away. Pain became a part of who he was.

    "I can't keep living like this," he told me once as he held the nub of his left leg.

    To help him, doctors prescribed opioids. It didn't take long for Cleve to become addicted to them.

    I first noticed something was wrong when he would fall asleep sitting up while smoking a cigarette, the ashes growing so long they'd ash themselves. Once, he fell asleep with his face down in a bowl of Cheerios.

    In 2008, he overdosed for the first time. I woke up to grunting noises. When I turned the light on, I found him in bed next to me, suffocating on his own vomit. His skin was purple and his eyes were rolled into the back of his head..

    I called 911 and performed C.P.R. Cleve survived again. Three weeks later, I miscarried. I have always wondered whether I lost the baby because of the stress I experienced from the overdose.

    Doctors at the military hospitals where Cleve was treated weren't equipped to treat his addiction. The term "opioid crisis" hadn't been coined yet.

    After Cleve's first overdose, the doctors had few options available. They could either take his pain medications away entirely, which would mean torturing him with pain, or they could switch up the kind of opioid he was taking. They chose the latter.


    On April 20, 2010, my husband died in Houston of an accidental overdose at an inpatient facility, Project Victory, where he was receiving treatment for PTSD. (Project Victory has since closed its doors.)

    I know the impact of war firsthand. War left me a widow. Just as the pain had become a part of my husband, grief has become a part of me. In this, I am not alone. Since we first went to war in Afghanistan in 2001, 7,013 service members have been killed and 53,088 have been wounded in conflicts in the Middle East and Afghanistan.

    The cost of war is every citizen's burden to carry, not just the burden of those willing to fight.. If you choose to support a war, be prepared to support those who are most affected by it. War has effects that extend beyond the casualties.

    Widows will be left to take care of their children alone. Children will be left without parents. Caregivers will be forced to put their lives on hold, as I did, to tend to the wounds of their spouses. Parents will bury their children. Veterans will be left with brain injuries, trauma and amputations — or, like my husband, with an opioid addiction.

    My husband was more than just a Marine. He was a big brother, a son and a loyal friend. In high school, just before he joined the Marines, he was a football player. His favorite subject was history and he wanted more than anything to be a crop duster pilot — to swoop and dive through the Alabama skies he grew up under.

    In Alabama, he grew up poor and with very few options available. The Marine Corps offered him free health care, decent pay, housing and a free education. Serving during wartime was worth it to him if it meant a chance to make something of himself.

    At 19 years old, Cleve signed his life away, even if he didn't know it at the time.

    The morning after the funeral, I cried alone in my bed wearing one of my husband's favorite shirts, a green one that said "Jesus Loves This Guy" and had two thumbs pointing up at my face. My whole life was ahead of me but I wasn't sure how I could bear living it after losing the man I loved.


    This April, it will have been 10 years since Cleve died. I keep a box of his belongings — uniforms, pictures, medals — in a spare room in the house I am rebuilding by hand with the insurance money I received after his death.

    When I notice the box collecting dust, I open it again and touch the things that were once so dear to him. This is my way of remembering him, of remembering the kids we once were: so young and in love and unaware that one day we would sacrifice everything.


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    3) The Injustice of This Moment Is Not an 'Aberration'

    From mass incarceration to mass deportation, our nation remains in deep denial.

    By Michelle Alexander, January 17, 2020

    https://www..nytimes.com/2020/01/17/opinion/sunday/michelle-alexander-new-jim-crow.html?action=click&module=Opinion&pgtype=Homepage


    A group of migrants walking along the Mexican side of the border in June.Credit...Ilana Panich-Linsman for The New York Times


    Ten years have passed since my book, "The New Jim Crow," was published. I wrote it to challenge our nation to reckon with the recurring cycles of racial reform, retrenchment and rebirth of caste-like systems that have defined our racial history since slavery. It has been an astonishing decade.. Everything and nothing has changed.

    When I was researching and writing the book, Barack Obama had not yet been elected president of the United States. I was in disbelief that our country would actually elect a black man to be the leader of the so-called free world. As the election approached, I felt an odd sense of hope and dread. I hoped against all reason that we would actually do it. But I also knew that, if we did, there would be a price to pay.

    Everything I knew through experience and study told me that we as a nation did not fully understand the nature of the moment we were in. We had recently birthed another caste system — a system of mass incarceration — that locked millions of poor people and people of color in literal and virtual cages...

    Our nation's prison and jail population had quintupled in 30 years, leaving us with the highest incarceration rate in the world. A third of black men had felony records — due in large part to a racially biased, brutal drug war — and were relegated to a permanent second-class status. Tens of millions of people in the United States had been stripped of basic civil and human rights, including the right to vote, the right to serve on juries and the right to be free of legal discrimination in employment, housing, education and basic public benefits.


    Nevertheless, our nation remained in deep denial that a new caste system even existed, and most of us — even those who cared deeply about racial justice — did not seem to understand that powerful racial dynamics and political forces were at play that made much of our racial progress illusory. We had not faced our racial history and could not tell the truth about our racial present, yet growing numbers of Americans wanted to elect a black president and leap into a "colorblind" future.


    I was right to worry about the aftermath of Obama's election.. After he was inaugurated, our nation was awash in "post-racialism." Black History Month events revolved around "how far we've come.." Many in the black community and beyond felt that, if Obama could win the presidency, anything was possible. Few people wanted to hear the message I felt desperate to convey: Despite appearances, our nation remains trapped in a cycle of racial reform, backlash and re-formation of systems of racial and social control..

    Things have changed since then. Donald Trump is president of the United States. For many, this feels like whiplash. After eight years of Barack Obama — a man who embraced the rhetoric (though not the politics) of the civil rights movement — we now have a president who embraces the rhetoric and the politics of white nationalism. This is a president who openly stokes racial animosity and even racial violence, who praises dictators (and likely aspires to be one), who behaves like a petulant toddler on Twitter, and who has a passionate, devoted following of millions of people who proudly say they want to "make America great again" by taking us back to a time that we've left behind.


    We are now living in an era not of post-racialism but of unabashed racialism, a time when many white Americans feel free to speak openly of their nostalgia for an age when their cultural, political and economic dominance could be taken for granted — no apologies required. Racial bigotry, fearmongering and scapegoating are no longer subterranean in our political discourse; the dog whistles have been replaced by bullhorns.. White nationalist movements are operating openly online and in many of our communities; they're celebrating mass killings and recruiting thousands into their ranks.


    White nationalism has been emboldened by our president, who routinely unleashes hostile tirades against black and brown people — calling Mexican migrants criminals, "rapists" and "bad people," referring to developing African nations as "shithole countries" and smearing a district of the majority-black city of Baltimore as a "disgusting, rat and rodent infested mess." Millions of Americans are cheering, or at least tolerating, these racial hostilities.

    Contrary to what many people would have us believe, what our nation is experiencing is not an "aberration." The politics of "Trumpism" and "fake news" are not new; they are as old as the nation itself. The very same playbook has been used over and over in this country by those who seek to preserve racial hierarchy, or to exploit racial resentments and anxieties for political gain, each time with similar results.

    Back in the 1980s and '90s, Democratic and Republican politicians leaned heavily on the racial stereotypes of "crack heads," "crack babies," "superpredators" and "welfare queens" to mobilize public support for the War on Drugs, a get-tough movement and a prison-building boom — a political strategy that was traceable in large part to the desire to appeal to poor and working-class white voters who had defected from the Democratic Party in the wake of the civil rights movement...

    Today, the rhetoric has changed, but the game remains the same. Public enemy No. 1 in the 2016 election was a brown-skinned immigrant, an "illegal," a "terrorist" or an influx of people who want to take your job or rape your daughter. As Trump put it: "When Mexico sends its people, they're not sending their best. … They're sending people that have lots of problems, and they're bringing those problems. … They're bringing drugs.. They're bringing crime. They're rapists."


    He promised to solve this imaginary crisis through mass deportation and building a wall between the United States and Mexico. He also insisted that his political opponent, Hillary Clinton, wanted "millions of illegal immigrants to come in and take everybody's jobs." And he blamed domestic terroristic attacks in New Jersey and New York on "our extremely open immigration system," which, he argued, allows Muslim terrorists into our country.


    The fact that Trump's claims were demonstrably false did not impede his rise, just as facts were largely irrelevant at the outset of the War on Drugs. It didn't matter back then that studies consistently found that whites were equally likely, if not morelikely, than people of color to use and sell illegal drugs. Black people were still labeled the enemy. Nor did it matter, when the drug war was taking off, that nearly all of the sensationalized claims that crack cocaine was some kind of "demon drug," drastically more harmful than powder cocaine, were false or misleading. Black people charged with possession of crack in inner cities were still punished far more harshly than white people in possession of powder cocaine in the suburbs. And it didn't matter that African-Americans weren't actually taking white people's jobs or college educations in significant numbers through affirmative action programs.

    Getting tough on "them" — the racially defined "others" who could easily be used as scapegoats and cast as the enemy — was all that mattered. Facts were treated as largely irrelevant then. As they are now.

    Fortunately, a growing number of scholars and activists have begun to connect the dots between mass incarceration and mass deportation in our nation's history and current politics. The historian Kelly Lytle Hernández, in her essay "Amnesty or Abolition: Felons, Illegals, and the Case for a New Abolition Movement," chronicles how these systems have emerged as interlocking forms of social control that relegate "aliens" and "felons" to a racialized caste of outsiders. In recent decades, the system of mass incarceration has stripped away from millions of U.S. citizens basic civil and human rights until their status mirrors (or dips below) that of noncitizen immigrants within the United States.. This development has coincided with the criminalization of immigration in the United States, resulting in a new class of "illegal immigrants" and "aliens" who are viewed and treated like "felons" or "criminals.." Immigration violations that were once treated as minor civil infractions are now crimes. And minor legal infractions, ranging from shoplifting to marijuana possession to traffic violations, now routinely prompt one of the nation's most devastating sanctions — deportation.

    The story of how our "nation of immigrants" came to deport and incarcerate so many for so little, Hernández explains, is a story of race and unfreedom reaching back to the era of emancipation. If we fail to understand the historical relationship between these systems, especially the racial politics that enabled them, we will be unable to build a truly united front that will prevent the continual re-formation of systems of racial and social control.

    In my experience, those who argue that the systems of mass incarceration and mass deportation simply reflect sincere (but misguided) efforts to address the real harms caused by crime, or the real challenges created by surges in immigration, tend to underestimate the corrupting influence of white supremacy whenever black and brown people are perceived to be the problem. "Between me and the other world, there is ever an unasked question," W.E.B. Du Bois famously said back in 1897: "How does it feel to be a problem?" White people are generally allowed to have problems, and they've historically been granted the power to define and respond to them. But people of color — in this "land of the free" forged through slavery and genocide — are regularly viewed and treated as the problem.


    This distinction has made all the difference. Once human beings are defined as the problem in the public consciousness, their elimination through deportation, incarceration or even genocide becomes nearly inevitable.


    White nationalism, at its core, reflects a belief that our nation's problems would be solved if only people of color could somehow be gotten rid of, or at least better controlled. In short, mass incarceration and mass deportation have less to do with crime and immigration than the ways we've chosen to respond to those issues when black and brown people are framed as the problem.

    As Khalil Gibran Muhammad points out in "The Condemnation of Blackness," throughout our nation's history, when crime and immigration have been perceived as white, our nation's response has been radically different from when those phenomena have been defined as black or brown. The systems of mass incarceration and mass deportation may seem entirely unrelated at first glance, but they are both deeply rooted in our racial history, and they both have expanded in part because of the enormous profits to be made in controlling, exploiting and eliminating vulnerable human beings..

    It is tempting to imagine that electing a Democratic president or more Democratic politicians will fix the crises in our justice systems and our democracy. To be clear, removing Trump from office is necessary and urgent; but simply electing more Democrats to office is no guarantee that our nation will break its habit of birthing enormous systems of racial and social control. Indeed, one of the lessons of recent decades is these systems can grow and thrive even when our elected leaders claim to be progressive and espouse the rhetoric of equality, inclusion and civil rights.

    President Bill Clinton, who publicly aligned himself with the black community and black leaders, escalated a racially discriminatory drug war in part to avoid being cast by conservatives as "soft on crime.." Similarly, President Obama publicly preached values of inclusion and compassion toward immigrants, yet he escalated the mass detention and deportation of noncitizens.

    Obama claimed that his administration was focused on deporting: "Felons, not families. Criminals, not children. Gang members, not a mom who's working hard to provide for her kids." However, reports by The New York Times and the Marshall Project revealed that, despite Obama's rhetoric, a clear majority of immigrants detained and deported during his administration had no criminal records, except minor infractions, including traffic violations, and posed no threat.

    Equally important is the reality that "felons" have families. And "criminals" are often children or teenagers. The notion that, if you've ever committed a crime, you're permanently disposable is the very idea that has rationalized mass incarceration in the United States.


    None of this is to minimize the real progress that has occurred on many issues of race and criminal justice during the past decade. Today, there is bipartisan support for some prison downsizing, and hundreds of millions of philanthropic dollars have begun to flow toward criminal justice reform. A vibrant movement led by formerly incarcerated and convicted people is on the rise — a movement that has challenged or repealed disenfranchisement laws in several states, mobilized support of sentencing reform and successfully organized to "ban the box" on employment applications that discriminate against those with criminal records by asking the dreaded question: "Have you ever been convicted of a felony?"

    Activism challenging police violence has swept the nation — inspired by the courageous uprisings in Ferguson, Mo., the viral videos of police killings of unarmed black people, and #BlackLivesMatter. Promising movements for restorative and transformative justice have taken hold in numerous cities. Campaigns against cash bail have gained steam. Marijuana legalization has sped across the nation, with more than 25 stateshaving partly or fully decriminalized cannabis since 2012.

    And "The New Jim Crow," which some predicted would never get an audience, wound up spending nearly 250 weeks on the New York Times best-seller list and has been used widely by faith groups, activists, educators and people directly affected by mass incarceration inside and outside prisons. Over the past 10 years, I've received thousands of letters — and tens of thousands of emails — from people in all walks of life who have written to share how the book changed their lives or how they have used it to support consciousness-raising or activism in countless ways..

    Everything has changed. And yet nothing has.


    The politics of white supremacy, which defined our original constitution, have continued unabated — repeatedly and predictably engendering new systems of racial and social control. Just a few decades ago, politicians vowed to build more prison walls. Today, they promise border walls.

    The political strategy of divide, demonize and conquer has worked for centuries in the United States — since the days of slavery — to keep poor and working people angry at (and fearful of) one another rather than uniting to challenge unjust political and economic systems. At times, the tactics of white supremacy have led to open warfare. Other times, the divisions and conflicts are less visible, lurking beneath the surface.

    The stakes now are as high as they've ever been. Nearly everyone seems aware that our democracy is in crisis, yet few seem prepared to reckon with the reality that removing Trump from office will not rid our nation of the social and political dynamics that made his election possible. No issue has proved more vexing to this nation than the issue of race, and yet no question is more pressing than how to overcome the politics of white supremacy — a form of politics that not only led to an actual civil war but that threatens our ability ever to create a truly fair, just and inclusive democracy.


    We find ourselves in this dangerous place not because something radically different has occurred in our nation's politics, but because so much has remained the same.

    The inconvenient truth is that racial progress in this country is always more complex and frequently more illusory than it appears at first glance.. The past 10 years has been a case in point. Our nation has swung sharply from what Marc Mauer memorably termed "a race to incarcerate" — propelled by bipartisan wars on "drugs" and "crime" — to a bipartisan commitment to criminal justice reform, particularly in the area of drug policy. And yet, it must be acknowledged that much of the progress occurred not because of newfound concern for people of color who have been the primary targets of the drug war, but because drug addiction, due to the opioid crisis, became perceived as a white problem, and wealthy white investors became interested in profiting from the emerging legal cannabis industry.

    Some of the reversals in political opinion have been striking. For example, John Boehner, a former Republican speaker of the House of Representatives, stated in 2011 that he was "unalterably opposed to decriminalizing marijuana," but by the spring of 2018 he had joined the board of a cannabis company.

    Growing sympathy for illegal drug users among whites and conservatives, and concern regarding the expense of mass imprisonment, helped to make possible a bipartisan consensus in support of the Trump administration's First Step Act — leading to the early release of more than 3,000 people from federal prisons for drug offenses. This development, which benefits people of color subject to harsh and biased drug sentencing laws, is difficult to characterize as major progress toward ending mass incarceration, given that Trump continued to unleash racially hostile tirades against communities of color and his administration vowed to reinstate the federal death penalty. He also rescinded a number of significant reforms adopted by Obama and expanded the use of private prisons.


    Obama also has a complicated legacy with respect to criminal justice reform. Obama was the first sitting president to visit a federal correctional facility, the first to oversee a drop in the federal prison population in more than 30 years, and he granted clemency to nearly 2,000 people behind bars — the highest total for any president since Harry Truman. His administration enacted significant policy changes, including legislation reducingsentencing disparities involving crack and powder cocaine, a phasing out of federal contracts with private prisons, and limitations on the transfer of military equipment to local police departments.

    And yet it sometimes appeared that Obama was reluctant to acknowledge the depth and breadth of the structural changes required to address police violence and the prevailing systems of racial and social control.


    For example, when black Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates Jr. was arrested in his own home for no reason, Obama responded to the national furor and media frenzy by inviting Gates and the arresting officer to a "beer summit" at the White House to work things out over drinks and peanuts, as though racial profiling is little more than an interpersonal dispute that can be resolved through friendly dialogue.

    Most troubling, the modest criminal justice reforms that were achieved during the Obama administration coincided with the expansion of the system of mass deportation. Although the administration agreed to phase out federal contracts for private prisons, it made enormous investments in private detention centers for immigrants, including the granting of a $1 billion contract to Corrections Corporation of America, the nation's largest prison company, to build a detention facility for women and children asylum seekers from Central America.

    Immigrant detention centers were exempted from the phaseout plan for private prisons, which meant that only about a quarter of the population held in private facilities in the United States was affected by the plan. The caging of immigrants for profit was allowed to continue without restraint.


    The reality is that, during both the Obama and Clinton years, highly racialized and punitive systems thrived under liberal presidents who were given the benefit of the doubt by those who might otherwise have been critics. Obama and Clinton's public displays of affection for communities of color, the egalitarian values they preached and their liberal or progressive stances on other issues helped to shield these vast systems of control from close scrutiny.

    Many of us saw these presidents as "good people" with our best interests at heart, doing what they could to navigate a political environment in which only limited justice is possible. All of these factors played a role, but one was key: These systems grew with relatively little political resistance because people of all colors were willing to tolerate the disposal of millions of individuals once they had been labeled criminals in the media and political discourse.. This painful reality suggests that ending our nation's habit of creating enormous systems of racial and social control requires us to expand our sphere of moral concern so widely that none of us, not even those branded criminals, can be viewed or treated as disposable.

    If there is any silver lining to be found in the election of Donald Trump to the presidency, it is that millions of people have been inspired to demonstrate solidarity on a large scale across the lines of gender, race, religion and class in defense of those who have been demonized and targeted for elimination. Trump's blatant racial demagogy has awakened many from their "colorblind" slumber and spurred collective action to oppose the Muslim ban and the border wall, and to create sanctuaries for immigrants in their places of worship and local communities.


    Many who are engaged in this work are also deeply involved in, or supportive of, movements to end police violence and mass incarceration. Growing numbers of people are beginning to see how the politics of white supremacy have resurfaced again and again, leading to the creation and maintenance of new systems of racial and social control. A politics of deep solidarity is beginning to emerge — the only form of politics that holds any hope for our collective liberation.

    The centuries-long struggle to birth a truly inclusive, egalitarian democracy — a nation in which every voice and every life truly matters — did not begin with us, and it will not end with us. The struggle is as old as the nation itself and the birth process has been painful, to say the least. My greatest hope and prayer is that we will serve as faithful midwives in our lifetimes and do what we can to make America, finally, what it must become.

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    4)  W.H.O. Warns That Pipeline for New Antibiotics Is Running Dry

    In two new reports, the global health agency says only government intervention can fix the broken market for new antimicrobial drugs.

    By Andrew Jacobs, January 17, 2020

    https://www.nytimes.com/2020/01/17/health/antibiotics-resistance-new-drugs.html


    A pharmacy manager counts antibiotic pills to fill a prescription.Credit...Joe Raedle/Getty Images


    With the pipeline for new antibiotics slowing to a trickle and bankruptcies driving pharmaceutical companies from the field, the World Health Organization on Friday issued a fresh warning about the global threat of drug resistant infections..

    Some 700,000 people die each year because medicines that once cured their conditions are no long effective. Yet the vast majority of the 60 new antimicrobial products in development worldwide are variations on existing therapies, and only a handful target the most dangerous drug-resistant infections, the agency said in a report.

    "We urgently need research and development," said Sarah Paulin, technical officer of Antimicrobial Resistance and Innovation at the W.H.O. and an author of two reports on the subject issued Friday. "We still have a window of opportunity but we need to ensure there is investment now so we don't run out of options for future generations."

    Without government intervention, the United Nations estimatesthat resistant infections could kill 10 million people annually by 2050 and prompt an economic slowdown to rival the global financial crisis of 2008.


    In the two reports — one that analyzed products being tested on patients and another that looked at therapies in the early stages of development — the W.H.O. cited the grim economic realities that have been shutting down investment in the field by major pharmaceutical companies and strangling the few remaining small companies that have come to dominate development of antimicrobial therapies.

    Unlike drugs that treat chronic conditions and are taken for years, antibiotics save lives, but are taken for just a week or two, diminishing their profitability for drugmakers.

    The sense of crisis has mounted in recent months as a number of American drug companies with promising new products have gone belly up. Among them are Melinta Therapeutics, which declared bankruptcy three weeks ago after failing to turn a profit on the four antibiotics it has on the market. Two other antibiotic start-ups, Achaogen and Aradigm, also went out of business last year.

    Drug company executives, public health experts and advocates for patients — groups often at odds with one another — have been united in urging Washington to enact new policies and programs that would help shore up the finances of ailing antibiotic companies and lure pharmaceutical giants back to the field.

    "Without such incentives, I'm worried these innovative companies developing new medicines will struggle to obtain the resources they need to fully develop them and bring these breakthroughs to patients," said Greg Frank, director of Working to Fight AMR, an advocacy group funded by the pharmaceutical industry.


    The outlook isn't entirely grim. In its report on potential innovative therapies, the W.H.O. identified 252 agents in development that target 12 pathogens the health agency has declared grave threats to humanity. They include multidrug-resistant E. coli, salmonellaand the bacteria that cause gonorrhea.

    Nearly 80 percent of these products are being developed by drug companies, the vast majority of them in Europe and North America, and they include a number of novel therapies like phages and antimicrobial peptides that offer the possibility of treating infections without a reliance on traditional antibiotics.

    "It is very encouraging to see a wide variety of new innovative approaches in the preclinical pipeline," the study said. "Nonetheless, many scientific challenges are yet to be overcome."

    The report on drugs in the later stages of development was less sanguine. Only eight new antibiotics have been approved since 2017, it said, and most are derivatives of existing drugs. The majority of them do not treat pathogens on the W.H.O.'s list of urgent threats..

    Of the 50 new antibiotics being tested in clinical trials, only two are active against the most worrisome class of bugs, called gram negative bacteria, that can prove deadly for newborns, cancer patients and those undergoing elective procedures like hip and knee replacements.

    It can take ten years and cost more than $2 billion to develop a new antibiotic and bring it to market, and much of that expense is for the failures along the way. Congress has been considering a billthat would shore up the market for antibiotics but it has yet to advance, despite bipartisan support.

    In the meantime, many experts worry that the few remaining start-ups in the field may not survive.

    "We can't have more companies going bankrupt," said Dr. Helen Boucher, an infectious disease specialist at Tufts Medical Center and a member of the Presidential Advisory Council on Combating Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria. "If the pipeline remains this anemic, that's going to have real implications for our patients."


     

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    5) Rural Montana Had Already Lost Too Many Native Women. Then Selena Disappeared.

    By Jack Healy, Photos By Cristina Baussan,

    January 20, 2020

    https://www.nytimes.com/2020/01/20/us/selena-not-afraid-missing-montana.html?action=click&module=Top%20Stories&pgtype=Homepage


    Ross Lebner, a member of Western Montana Search Dogs, heading out to search for Selena Not Afraid near the Fly Creek rest stop, where the teenager was last seen.



    BIG HORN COUNTY, Mont. — Jackie Big Hair slept in her car again, waking every few hours to fire up the engine and gaze at the frozen highway rest stop where her 16-year-old daughter had been reported missing. 

    "I just have to be here," Ms. Big Hair, 50, said, watching semis lumber across the plains. "I don't know where else to go."

    This was her vigil now, along with searches in Billings about 30 miles away, three weeks after her youngest child, Selena Not Afraid, was reported missing from a barren stretch of Interstate 90 in a southern Montana county where 65 percent of the population is Native American. Law enforcement officials said a van carrying Selena home the day after a New Year's party in Billings had pulled into the rest stop after breaking down, and then reportedly started up again and driven away without her. Nobody had heard from her since.


    A national outcry over the killings and disappearances of Indigenous women has reached a boiling point here in Big Horn County, a rural stretch of rolling mountains and ranch lands that contains the Crow and Northern Cheyenne reservations and has the highest rate of missing and murdered Native Americans in Montana, and among the highest nationwide.


    Local activists had an incomplete count of 27 Native women who had gone missing in recent memory in Big Horn County alone. Now, there are 28. The difference here and in many parts of the West is that for decades the disappearance of mothers and children, cousins and friends almost invariably played out in utter obscurity, with modest law enforcement investigations that almost invariably languished unsolved.

    Activists and researchers say the crisis burned unheeded for generations until a few years ago, when families' stories of how their loved ones were sex trafficked, murdered with impunity or dismissed as chronic runaways gained traction through grass-roots organizing and social media, forcing politicians and law enforcement to take notice..

    Last year, 5,590 Indigenous women were reported missing to the F.B.I.'s National Crime Information Center, but advocates say the staggeringly high rates of violence suffered by Indigenous people is still not fully reflected in official accounting. Some of the victims are misclassified as Asian or Hispanic, or are overlooked if they live in urban areas instead of reservations, or their cases are lost in a jurisdictional maze over which state, federal or tribal law enforcement agency bears responsibility for investigating.

    Law enforcement officials said these can be extremely difficult cases to investigate, sometimes ranging over vast expanses of territory, but that they are committed to solving them. The families say the problem is more a matter of will and resources than of difficulty.


    "Native women have been dehumanized from the very beginning," said Desi Rodriguez-Lonebear, a demographer who grew up in Big Horn County and is on the board of the Sovereign Bodies Institute, which has created its own database of cases. "The law has failed us time and time again. We're tired of it. We're tired of our people dying, of our kids going to jail."

    Now, families like Selena's are taking an urgent public stand to pressure politicians and law enforcement to provide more aggressive responses to these cases. They are raising alarms through social media and even bracing themselves against Montana blizzards to keep their loved ones from being forgotten. They are organizing candlelit vigils, rallying at courthouses and sheriff's offices and marching for days along prairie highwaysreservation roads and to the steps of state capitols.


    "We're here demanding it," Selena's aunt Cheryl Horn said one afternoon, warming her hands with a bowl of chili as volunteers returned from another fruitless search of the nearby hills.. "We're not being quiet. We're not leaving."

    In recent months, a flurry of federal and state agencies across the country and here in Montana have raced to respond with task forces and law-enforcement resources, including a new Justice Department effort to coordinate federal and local responses to disappearances and murders in Indian Country.

    Law-enforcement authorities say that Selena, a member of the Crow tribe, went missing at about 2 p.m. on New Year's Day. A New Year's Eve party in Billings had spilled over into the following afternoon, and she was riding back toward her home in Hardin, about 50 miles east.

    According to local and federal law-enforcement alerts, the van broke down and pulled over at the rest stop, where Selena was last seen walking into a field. Her family believes she was taken, possibly by a passing car.


    When her relatives heard the news, they began pouring into the rest stop, circling their cars and campers and horse trailers into a makeshift windbreak and transforming a frozen spit of asphalt and concrete into a scene of prayer and protest.


    They lit a campfire, searched through ranchers' fields and garlanded the fences and sign poles with red ribbons and posters of Selena. They saturated social media with calls for help. "Internet warriors," one of Selena's aunts called the response.

    At 16, Selena already knew the toll of violence too well.

    She had buried three siblings — a brother who had been fatally shot by Billings police officers; a sister who was struck and killed by a car; and her twin sister, who died by suicide when she was just 11 years old.

    "I've always felt like there's a bad presence against us," Selena's older brother, R.J., said. "I've expected the worst.."

    After Selena was reported missing, police officers from South Dakota and Wyoming joined Big Horn County sheriff's deputies, Bureau of Indian Affairs officers and volunteers to search the nearby hills. Federal and local law-enforcement officers set up a command center in the basement of the county courthouse. Thermal drones and helicopters buzzed overhead.


    The F.B.I.. issued an alert for Selena and sent in a search team, but agents and sheriff's investigators have said little more about her disappearance, or whether they are investigating the older acquaintances who had been riding in the van with her. ..

    The swift response has surprised some activists. "Nothing moves that fast," said BethYana Pease, a Crow community organizer.

    Families and activists say they have been sounding these alarms for years. They say the crisis flows from generations of discriminatory government policies and racism in reservation border towns like Hardin that devalue Native women's lives and deaths.

    Jay Harris, the county prosecutor, who is a member of the Crow tribe, said the proliferation of meth use and a scarcity of federal law enforcement had exacerbated the problem. Last November, the Crow chairman declared a state of emergency over what he called ineffective investigations and unanswered police calls on the 2.3 million-acre reservation, and said the tribe would move to form its own police force.

    Some victims' families wondered why the deaths and disappearances of their own mothers, sisters and nieces had not sparked a similar outcry. Ms. Pease ticked off names she said had never received justice: 14-year-old Henny Scott, who was found dead two weeks after she went missing in December 2018. Bonnie Three Irons, a mother of six, whose body was found in the mountains in April 2017.


    A memorial for Kaysera Stops Pretty Places at the spot where she was found dead in August.


    Or 18-year-old Kaysera Stops Pretty Places. It was late August when Kaysera went out with friends in her hometown, Hardin, the county seat. Four days later, a jogger found her body in a suburban backyard next to the house where she had been that evening, just steps away from a busy road..


    "Where the hell were these big shots when my granddaughter was missing?" asked Carmelia Brown, a relative who said she loved Kaysera as a granddaughter.

    Kaysera's family believes she was murdered, but her cause of death has lingered undetermined for four months, her autopsy still unfinished. Her family says it has never been told a certain time of death.. The case is classified as "Suspicious" and still being investigated, said Mr. Harris, the county attorney.

    Kaysera's family members wondered how she could have lain in someone's lawn for days without being seen. They were troubled that her body had been shuttled back and forth between the funeral home and state crime lab before being cremated by the county coroner, who is also the funeral director. They were disturbed that one of the lead investigators into Kaysera's death had also been involved in an incident in which her younger brother was beaten and forcibly restrained.

    "Why does nobody care about this?" asked Grace Bulltail, one of Kaysera's aunts and an assistant professor of engineering at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.. "We're not being given any information."

    Family members were uncertain whether Kaysera and Selena knew each other, but their stories have become intertwined.. When Kaysera's family led marches to the county courthouse seeking answers into her death, Selena attended, her aunt Cheryl Horn said. She posted Facebook tributes to Big Horn County's missing and murdered Indigenous women.

    One morning at Selena's roadside vigil, as one of her great-aunts lit the day's fire, her overcoat swung open to show a red sweatshirt bearing Kaysera's face.

    "This is the justice that Kaysera didn't get," Ms. Horn, Selena's aunt, said.

    Selena's cousins gathered near a fire at the rest stop on the 10th night of her disappearance.

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    6) Architect of C.I.A. Interrogation Program Testifies at Guantánamo Bay

    Appearing for the first time at the military war court, James Mitchell was defiant, saying he was there for the benefit of the victims of the 9/11 attacks and their families.

    By Carol Rosenberg, January 21, 2020

    https://www.nytimes.com/2020/01/21/us/politics/guantanamo-bay-interrogation.html?action=click&module=Latest&pgtype=Homepage


    James E. Mitchell helped develop what the government euphemistically called "enhanced interrogation techniques.."Credit...Angel Valentin for The New York Times


    GUANTÁNAMO BAY, Cuba — On the witness stand was James E. Mitchell, a psychologist and architect of the Bush-era interrogation program that had inflicted torture on prisoners held in secret C.I..A. prisons after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. 

    Defiantly, he described how the program came about and why in his view it was necessary, growing emotional only when recounting how he came to the conclusion that it was his patriotic duty to personally implement the techniques he had devised.

    Sitting yards from him in the military courtroom built specifically for their death-penalty trial were the five men accused of helping plot the attacks. All of them had been subject to the methods developed by Dr. Mitchell. Their alleged leader, Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, was waterboarded 183 times in March 2003 by a team including Dr. Mitchell.. They sat impassively as he testified at a pretrial hearing in their case.

    It was an extraordinary moment in the slow-moving justice system set up to try foreign prisoners of the war on terror, with American lawyers for defendants who were tortured more than a decade and a half ago flipping the script to question an interrogator from the so-called black sites.


    Dr. Mitchell, a former contract psychologist for the C.I..A., expressed no regrets or contrition, tearfully saying he did it for the American people at a time when President George W. Bush's administration feared a follow-on attack by airplane or nuclear bomb to the Sept. 11 hijackings that killed 2,976 people. 

    "I'd get up today and do it again," he said.

    "I thought my moral duty," he said, choking up, "to protect American lives outweighed the feelings of discomfort of terrorists who voluntarily took up arms against us. To me it just seemed like it would be dereliction of my moral responsibilities."

    He was talking about the first man he waterboarded, a Palestinian known as Abu Zubaydah. In 2002, Mr. Zubaydah was the first known C.I.A. prisoner subjected to the full range of interrogation techniques, which also included sleep deprivation and being crammed inside a coffin-size box and slammed into a wall. He has never been charged with a crime and has never been to the war court but is held at Guantánamo as an indefinite detainee.

    But the five men charged as conspirators in the Sept. 11 attacks were present. It was the first time they had seen Dr. Mitchell since their transfer to Guantánamo from the black sites in 2007. Lawyers for Mr.. Mohammed and another defendant, Walid bin Attash, asked the judge to clear two thick binders of materials off the witness stand that had obstructed their view of him. 

    None of the defendants expressed any visible emotion, although defense lawyers had a psychologist and a psychiatrist with experience treating torture survivors in court to sit with two of them.


    Lawyers for Mr. Mohammed's nephew, Ammar al-Baluchi, called Dr. Mitchell to testify