Honoring Oscar Lopez Rivera, Now More Than Ever

By Max Herman

By Johanna Fernandez And Carlito Rovira for Counter Punch – Recently released Puerto Rican political prisoner Oscar Lopez Rivera has announced that although he will march at the Puerto Rican Day Parade this Sunday, June 11, 2017, he will not accept the recognition bestowed on him by event organizers as the parade’s principal honoree. Lopez Rivera gracefully declined the award in response to the political controversy orchestrated by right-wing forces over his expected decoration. His public statement asserted that the honor should go to “those confronting the fiscal, health care and human rights crisis Puerto Rico is facing at this historic juncture.” But those who believe in the right to self-determination of all people who face military, economic, and/or political subjugation should continue to uphold that honor and defend the right of colonized people to determine for themselves, without outside pressure, who among them should be honored and why. In 1981, US federal courts convicted Oscar Lopez Rivera for seditious conspiracy and sentenced him to life in prison. Approximately 20 years before Lopez Rivera was so convicted and imprisoned, Nelson Mandela was convicted and sentenced of the same crime.

Mumia Abu-Jamal Fights For New Trial And Freedom

1mumia

By Jeff Mackler for Counter Punch. Pennsylvania – On Mumia Abu-Jamal’s birthday, April 24, about 125 demonstrators mobilized outside Philadelphia’s Court of Common Pleas in solidarity with Mumia’s effort to reverse his 1982 frame-up murder conviction and win a new trial that could lead to his freedom. Mumia Abu-Jamal is perhaps the world’s best known political prisoner. He has been imprisoned for 36 years, and was on death row for 30 of those years. His fight for a new trial and freedom has been supported by organizations ranging from Amnesty International and the NAACP to the European Parliament and scores of national and local trade unions and city governments in the U.S. and abroad. Represented by Judy Ritter, Mumia’s Philadelphia-based attorney, and Christina Swarms, of the NAACP’s Legal Defense and Education Fund, Mumia petitioned the court for a new Post Conviction Relief Act hearing based on last year’s U.S. Supreme Court decision in the case of Williams v. Pennsylvania.

Mumia To Finally Receive Hep C Treatment

Mumia two shots combined

By Staff for the Campaign to Bring Mumia Home. On March 31, 2017, Mumia Abu-Jamal received a cruel mix of bad and good news from a prison doctor. The doctor shared the results of his recent lab test, which showed clear signs of cirrhosis, an irreversible scarring of the liver caused by his untreated Hep C. The doctor also informed Mumia that he would be treated with the Hep C cure within a week. The impending victory was bittersweet. Mumia shared his feelings with those he called that morning. His rare expression of emotion was also captured in an interview that evening in which he stated: “My first reaction was really shock, anger, disbelief. If I had been treated in 2015, if I had been treated in 2012 when they say they first diagnosed it, I wouldn’t be this far advanced.…For a lot of guys and a lot of gals inside the Pennsylvania prisons, I think it is a step forward and a great day, but I assure you I don’t feel that way right now.”

Manning: Thank You To Those Who Kept Me Alive

1cm

By Chelsea Manning for The Guardian. To those who have kept me alive for the past six years: minutes after President Obama announced the commutation of my sentence, the prison quickly moved me out of general population and into the restrictive housing unit where I am now held. I know that we are now physically separated, but we will never be apart and we are not alone. Recently, one of you asked me “Will you remember me?” I will remember you. How could I possibly forget? You taught me lessons I would have never learned otherwise. When I was afraid, you taught me how to keep going. When I was lost, you showed me the way. When I was numb, you taught me how to feel. When I was angry, you taught me how to chill out. When I was hateful, you taught me how to be compassionate. When I was distant, you taught me how to be close. When I was selfish, you taught me how to share.

Imprisoned Ex-Black Panther Mumia Abu-Jamal Denied Hepatitis C Treatment

Mumia Abu-Jamal, third from the left, in a picture taken last April after his medical emergency with supporters Abdul John, Pam Africa and Johanna Fernández. Photograph: Courtesy of Johanna Fernandez

By Renée Feltz for The Guardian – The internationally known imprisoned former Black Panther and journalist Mumia Abu-Jamal has had his request for a life-saving hepatitis C treatment denied by a federal judge. Abu-Jamal was sentenced to death for the 1981 killing of a Philadelphia police officer, but maintained his innocence and Amnesty International says he was denied a fair trial. After 30 years on death row, his sentence was overturned on constitutional grounds.

Former Mailman Gets 4 Months In Prison For Gyrocopter Protest At U.S. Capitol

Former mailman Doug Hughes gets 4 months in prison for gyrocopter protest at U.S. Capitol

By Ben Montgomery for Tampa Bay Times – WASHINGTON — For 13 years, Doug Hughes delivered the mail for the United States Postal Service without issue. Now he’s being sent to live in a prison cell for trying to deliver the most important message of his life. The former mailman from Ruskin, who landed a gyrocopter on the lawn of the U.S. Capitol building last year to protest how political campaigns are financed, was sentenced Thursday in U.S. District Court to 120 days in prison.

Families Of Imprisoned Journalists Begin Open Ended Sit-In

From dailynewsegypt.com

By Staff of Daily News Egypt – Families of imprisoned journalists began an open ended sit-in at the Press Syndicate headquarters on Sunday, according to an announcement on the Facebook page representing the coalition of families. At least 42 journalists are currently in detention, according to the latest Press Syndicate figures, whereas the coalition estimates the number to be around 90 journalists. The families chose Sunday in particular as the start date for the sit-in as it will coincide with a syndicate ceremony celebrating its 75th anniversary.

Hearing Held To Remove Pro Bono Lawyer For Innocent Lifer

The interior of an unoccupied cell showing standard issue clothing given to prisoners is seen at Camp VI, a prison used to house detainees at the U.S. Naval Base at Guantanamo Bay

By Mark Lance for Free Corey Walker – The OAG’s action to get long-time political activist and attorney Rachel Wolkenstein out of this case is retaliation against the efforts of Corey Walker to overturn his frame-up murder conviction. Since Wolk­enstein began working with Walker pro bono in May 2014, first helping with investigation and his pro sepetitions and then as his at­tor­ney pro hac vice, Corey Walker filed three sets of legal papers. Each time yet more evidence was given showing his conviction was the result of extensive police and pro­s­ecution misconduct.

Last Angola 3 Member Released After 43+ Years In Prison

Screen Shot 2016-02-20 at 5.34.40 PM

By Staff of Coalition to Free the Angola 3 – Just moments ago, Albert Woodfox, the last remaining member of the Angola 3 still behind bars, was released from prison 43 years and 10 months after he was first put in a 6×9 foot solitary cell for a crime he did not commit. After decades of costly litigation, Louisiana State officials have at last acted in the interest of justice and reached an agreement that brings a long overdue end to this nightmare. Albert has maintained his innocence at every step, and today, on his 69th birthday, he will finally begin a new phase of his life as a free man.

A Grandma Drone Resister’s Letter From Prison

Shutterstock.com

By Mary Anne Grady Flores for AlterNet – Joy swept through our cell block, Jamesville County Jail, Pod 4, Thursday, January 28. That evening some of the 59 women in our pod rushed up and knocked on my cell door. They reported the six o’clock news had shown 12 drone resisters handcuffed, sitting on a roadside curb, waiting to be taken into custody. I just started my six-month sentence on January 19, for photographing protesters of the drone warfare directed out of Hancock Air Base in nearby Syracuse, New York. These eight protestors, many of whom are Catholic Workers, were later acquitted.

Activist Facing Felonies For Breaking Northrup Grumman Windows

Jessica Reznicek

By Fran Quigley for Popular Resistance. Jessica Reznicek, 34, an Iowa peace activist, was arraigned Monday and charged with two felonies for breaking three windows with a sledgehammer at the Northrup Grumman facility outside the Omaha Nebraska Strategic Air Command at Offut Air Force base. Writing from her jail cell, Reznicek, who has lived and worked at the Des Moines Catholic Worker for years, said she broke the windows as an act of conscience “in an effort to expose the details of the defense contracts currently held by Northrup Grumman with U.S. Strategic Air Command (STRATCOM) at Offutt Air Force Base. Over the years, billions of taxpayer dollars are pouring into the hands of these money-hungry, bomb-building, and computer geek space war criminals.” Jessica is facing up to 20 years. Her trial is schedule for May 24th. She is currently incarcerated, refusing to pay bond.

Permanent Protest To Free Oscar Lopez Rivera

1olr

By Jose Manuel Lopez of TodosUnidosDescolonizarPR. Bayamon,Puerto Rico – Our partner, reporter and political activist Edwin Chungo Molina is promoting an interesting campaign to force the United States (US) government to release Puerto Rican political prisoner Oscar López Rivera. Oscar has served 34 years in a US prison for exercising his inalienable right to use all means necessary to decolonize Puerto Rico. The US government is the criminal for ignoring 34 United Nations (UN) resolutions asking it to immediately decolonize Puerto Rico. In 1960, the UN determined democratically that colonialism is a crime against humanity because it threatens world peace.

Time Spent In Guantánamo Is Time No One Gets Back

Screen Shot 2016-02-08 at 2.52.47 PM

By Frida Berrigan for Waging Nonviolence – I love my local paper. The Day is locally owned and based right in downtown New London, Connecticut. They publish an actual, physical newspaper every single day and have a first rate photo department. Their news pages feature a mix of national and international articles from The New York Times and AP wire service stories, as well as locally produced articles of local interest — with headlines like “Reality television producer sees show for New London.”

After 40 Years, It’s Long Past Time To Free Leonard Peltier

Abdul Rahman Shalabi, 39, was among the first prisoners taken to Guantánamo in January 2002. Photograph: Charles Dharapak/AP

By Leah Todd for Institute for Constitutional Rights – This Saturday will mark 40 years since political prisoner Leonard Peltier was arrested and charged with the deaths of two federal agents on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in 1975. Since that time, new information has come to light about improprieties in the government’s handling of the case, and the movement for Native American rights has made great gains in fighting discrimination and building recognition of the long U.S. history of colonial violence. Yet Leonard Peltier remains in jail, now 71 years old and experiencing multiple serious health issues, most recently an abdominal aortic aneurysm.

Protests Swell As Journalist Jailed By Israel Approaches 70th Day Of Hunger Strike

Screen Shot 2016-02-04 at 11.31.43 AM

By Joe Catron for Mint Press News – NEW YORK — As Palestinian journalist Mohammed al-Qeeq reaches the 70th day of a hunger strike against his administrative detention by Israel on Tuesday, protests demanding his freedom are growing across the world as others continue in Palestine. “Mohammed is hanging between life and death,” Islam al-Qeeq, his brother, told MintPress News from Ramallah. “The coming hours could be very crucial in his battle for freedom and physical survival.” Supporters overseas echoed the family’s alarm.