Ben Turk and Alexander Abassi on The Final Straw

From Asheville FM

Streaming at AshevilleFM from 3am EST on August 25th through August 31st, 2014, then podcasting at radio4all.net. Also airing this week on KOWA-LPFM in Olympia, WA, KWTF in Bodega Bay, CA, KXCF in Marshall, CA, and WCRS-LP Columbus Community Radio 98.3 and 102.1 FM

If you’re in the asheville area, there will be a vigil at Pack Square in downtown at 6pm tonight, Sunday the 24th of August for those who’ve lost their lives at the hands of pigs, such as Michael Brown, the unarmed black man gunned down by pigs in Ferguson and A.J. Marion, gunned down by asheville pigs who’ve just been cleared of charges. https://www.facebook.com/events/696569130391969/

This episode features two conversations. The first is with Ben Turk, anarchist, playwrite and prison abolitionist. We chat briefly about the upcoming North American Anarchist Black Cross conference in Colorado, about what folks can expect if they go and how to support the event. https://fundrazr.com/campaigns/ek5vc/ab/f3E260

After that, a conversation with Alexander Abassi. Alex is a palestinian-american from Los Angeles, an activist in the BDS (That’s boycott, divest and sanctions movement against the Israeli occupation of Palestine) and a student at Harvard’s divinity school. We talk about decolonization, the uprisings in Ferguson, the struggle to liberate Palestine from the occupation by Israel and what solidarity and liberation might look like.

Initially, when I (Bursts) contacted Alex for this conversation I was attempting to suss out what anarchists in Palestine had to say about the seige of Gaza by Israel, the national question, what Anarchism looked like to them and what how that might differ from the U.S. context. That’s a conversation I’m still looking to have. Alex was kind enough to have a conversation but it went in a different, albeit worthwhile direction as is clear when one listens to the questions that I ask. Although Alex isn’t an anarchist and I don’t agree with everything that he says, we (The Final Straw) do feel like he had a lot of great stuff to say and we feel like the conversation was very much worthwhile. We hope that you enjoy it. The second half of it will be featured in an upcoming episode and will be linked here soon.

The playlist can be found here: http://www.ashevillefm.org/node/10049

Post release fund for Jason Sutherlin: Get a Tinley Park 5 t-shirt!

Donate to anti-fascist prisoner, Jason Sutherlin’s post release fund. Monday Aug. 25- Sunday Aug. 31 only: get a Tinley Park 5 t-shirt with a $40 donation! Be sure to leave contact info.
jason-sutherlin

In May 2012 five antifascists were arrested and, in early 2013, took non-cooperating plea deals for 3 felonies each for taking part in emphatically stopping a meeting of white supremecisits organizing under the guise of the Illinois European Heritage Association at a restaurant in Tinley Park, IL. For more information, see tinleyparkfive.wordpress.com.

Jason Sutherlin is the LAST of the five to be released, rejoining us in early September. Bloomington ABC , NYC ABC , Denver ABC, and Sacramento Prisoner Support have launched a campaign to start a release fund for Jason. By the time Jason is released he’ll have been locked up for almost 2.5 years, will have a felony record, and certain things just won’t be the same. Lets help him make a smooth transition! Lets raise some money and secure a release fund that will welcome him upon his release. Your donations will help Jason pay costs of living and support his family while he gets back on his feet.
jasonsutherlinpic

If you’d like to write to Jason to let him know you’re thinking of him and that you’re glad he’s getting out soon, I’m sure he’d love to hear from you. His current address is as follows:

Jason Sutherlin M34023
100 Hillcrest Road
East Moline, IL 61244

In May 2012 five antifascists were arrested and, in early 2013, took non-cooperating plea deals for 3 felonies each for taking part in emphatically stopping a meeting of white supremacists organizing under the guise of the Illinois European Heritage Association at a restaurant in Tinley Park, IL. For more information, see tinleyparkfive.wordpress.com.

Jason Sutherlin is the LAST of the five to be released, rejoining us in early September. Bloomington ABC , NYC ABC , Denver ABC, and Sacramento Prisoner Support have launched a campaign to start a release fund for Jason. By the time Jason is released he’ll have been locked up for almost 2.5 years, will have a felony record, and certain things just won’t be the same. Lets help him make a smooth transition! Lets raise some money and secure a release fund that will welcome him upon his release. Your donations will help Jason pay costs of living and support his family while he gets back on his feet.

If you’d like to write to Jason to let him know you’re thinking of him and that you’re glad he’s getting out soon, I’m sure he’d love to hear from you. His current address is as follows:

Jason Sutherlin M34023
100 Hillcrest Road
East Moline, IL 61244

In Solidarity,
Bloomington ABC, NYC ABC, Denver ABC, Sacramento Prisoner Support

International Week of Solidarity with Anarchist Political Prisoners!

Week of solidarity for International Anarchist Prisoners starts today! Join us for letter writing, and show support for anarchist prisoners far and wide. Meeting at the amazing vegan Beet Box cafe and bakery, 1030 E. 22nd Avenue. Denver ABC will provide writing supplies, postage and a sampling of tasty treats. Let’s send our comrades our love!

Wednesday, August 27th, Movie Night! Please join us at Mutiny info cafe at 5:30pm for a screening of “Street Politics 101″. Before the show, Denver ABC will give a short introduction to international anarchist prisoners. After there will be solidarity cards and address available for more writing!
movienightflyer8.75x11.25

“In summer 2013 members of several ABC groups discussed the necessity of
introducing an International Day for Anarchist Prisoners. Given there are
already established dates for Political Prisoners Rights Day or Prison
Justice Day, we found it important to emphasize the stories of our
comrades as well. Many imprisoned anarchists will never be acknowledged as
‘political prisoners’ by formal human-rights organizations, because their
sense of social justice is strictly limited to the capitalist laws which
are designed to defend the State and prevent any real social change. At
the same time, even within our individual communities, we know so little
about the repression that exists in other countries, to say nothing of the
names and cases involving many of our incarcerated comrades.

This is why we have decided to introduce an annual Week for Anarchist
Prisoners on August 23-30. We chose August 23 as a starting point, because
on that very day in 1927 the Italian-American anarchists Nicola Sacco and
Bartolomeo Vanzetti were executed in prison. They were convicted of
murdering two men during an armed robbery at a shoe factory in South
Braintree, Massachusetts, United States. Their arrest was a part of a
bigger anti-radical campaign led by the American government. The State’s
evidence against the two was almost totally non-existent and many people
still today believe that they were punished for their strong anarchist
beliefs. Given the nature and diversity of anarchist groups around the
globe, we have proposed a week of common action rather than a single
campaign on a specific day making easier for groups to be able to organize
an event within a longer target period. Therefore, we call on everyone to
spread the information about the Week for Anarchist Prisoners among other
groups and communities and think about organizing event(s) in your city or
town. The events can vary from info-evenings, screenings and benefit
concerts to solidarity and direct actions. Let your imagination run free.
Till all are free.”

 

Daniel McGowan Sues the BOP

From HuffPost:

Daniel McGowan may have been the first person thrown in solitary confinement for writing a HuffPost blog. Now he’ll be the first person to sue the Bureau of Prisons over it.

The environmental activist and former prisoner filed a lawsuit on Wednesday against the prison system over an April 2013 incident in which U.S. Marshals threw him in a Brooklyn federal jail — ironically, for criticizing earlier violations of his free speech.

“The Bureau of Prisons does not like criticism and their reaction was unsurprisingly to try and crush someone who stepped out of line,” McGowan told HuffPost Tuesday in an email.

After a federal judge labeled him a terrorist in 2007 for arson committed with the Earth Liberation Front, McGowan spent years in some of the federal prison system’s most restrictive prisons, the communication management units (CMUs). The Bureau of Prisons denies it, but internal prison files strongly suggest McGowan was placed there because of his continued outspoken association with the environmental movement.

Serving the final months of his sentence in a Brooklyn halfway house in 2013, McGowan continued to speak out. He detailed how he was placed in the isolated special prisons in a HuffPost blog entry.

Three days after writing that post, the marshals threw him in the Brooklyn Metropolitan Detention Center. He was placed in solitary and told that he would be soon taken back to one of the CMUs. Inmates call them “Little Guantanamo.”

“I had just served over five years in prison and was acclimating to life on the outside only to be yanked back to prison,” McGowan said. “It was terrifying.”

After his lawyers interceded, McGowan was released the next day back to the halfway house. But in a separate, multi-plaintiff lawsuit against the Bureau of Prisons for how it creates and runs CMUs, McGowan’s lawyers argued that the entire incident was a startling example of their larger claim that the special units are used to punish political speech. Even the federal government later admitted in that case that McGowan was jailed contrary to the established law that inmates may write articles under their own bylines.

Although a judge dismissed McGowan’s claims in the lawsuit against the CMUs in July 2013, he is now forging on against the Bureau of Prisons for what he says was a case of unconstitutional retaliation.

“McGowan was arrested for his criticism of the government, plain and simple,” his lawyer David Rankin told HuffPost in an email. “Communication management units are wrong now, they were wrong then, and trying to tell that to the world should not get you thrown back in prison.”

The 29th of every month for Oscar Lopez Rivera!

From ProLibertad:

August29

Bill Dunne moved to FCI Mendota

billdunne
According to supporters and confirmed through the BOP:
Bill Dunne was just moved to a new FCI in Fresno county about 2.5 hours or so from SF.
His new address is:

Bill Dunne 10916-086
FCI MENDOTA
Federal Correctional Institution
P.O. BOX 9
Mendota, CA 93640

He wouldn’t have gotten the birthday cards that were sent,
as his mail doesn’t follow him, it is just trashed. So please send him
another card to let him know we care.

Calls mounting in US for release of African-American Imam

375358_Jamil Abdullah al-Amin From PressTV:

Calls are growing in the US for the release of Jamil Abdullah al-Amin, a jailed African-American Imam.

The 70-year-old Imam, who has been held in the United States Penitentiary, Administrative Maximum Facility since 2007, is suffering from a rare form of blood cancer.

ADX Florence or the Alcatraz of the Rockies is a federal supermax prison in Florence, Colorado. Supermax prisons are “control-unit” prisons, or units within prisons, which represent the most secure levels of custody in the prison sys
tems of certain countries.

Press TV’s Marizeh Hashemi has spoken to Imam Jamil’s wife, Karima al-Amin to get updates on his health situation.

Imam al-Amin’s Health

For years, the Imam has been kept in a supermax prison “1400 miles away from his attorney and family,” says his wife.

“For more than a year, my husband developed a dental problem. He attempted for 10 months to see a dentist and he was unable, they just would not let him see one. He started developing symptoms, 29 pounds of lost weight, swelling of the feet, could not swallow, some days he could not get out of the bed… He was ignored because they don’t want him to come in contact with the inmates,” Karima al-Amin said.

“As soon as we found out that he was ill, we launched a campaign to get him out of the supermax into a medical center in North Carolina. Because of the support that we received from congressional representatives who are members of Congressional Black Caucus and because we received widespread grass root support, he was moved on July 15 to a federal medical center in North Carolina,” she continued.

The supermax prison in Florida in Florence, Colorado, is “one of the top ten worst prisons in the world,” she said. “They have all of the Muslim high profile cases out there. It’s a no-contact, no-touch solitary confinement facility. The inmates are held for 23 hours in the cell; some are able to get out for an hour.”

Now that Imam al-Amin is diagnosed with cancer, Karima al-Amin said, they are doing all they can to prevent authorities from sending back the Imam to the supermax.

“We will continue to have a campaign that they will not move him back to the supermax. He needs to be monitored and he needs to be retested every two to three months,” she said.

FBI Oppression, Assasinations

Press TV also spoke to the Imam of Masjid al-Islam, Imam Abdul Alim Musa, on the case of Imam al-Amin.

Musa had a lot to share on the innocence of Jamil al-Amin, the situation of black people in the US and threats to his own life, being an African-American Muslim community leader.

“All of us here in the United States know that Imam Jamil was set up and sent to prison. One of his friends Imam Luqman, he did a program on him (Imam Jamil), four and half years ago. He was assassinated by the FBI in Detroit,” Musa said.

The FBI accused the 53-year-old Luqman Abdullah of being “the radical leader of a Sunni Islam group in Detroit,” according to Crescent International. He was shot 20 times by the FBI on October 28, 2009 during a raid on a warehouse used as a prayer facility. Several thousand Muslims attended his funeral prayer held at the Muslim Center.

“I just came a few minutes ago from a demonstration down at Malcolm X Park about Michael Brown who was shot by a police officer in Ferguson, Missouri,” Imam Musa continued.

Imam Musa was referring to the fatal shooting of unarmed 18-year-old Michael Brown by an officer on Saturday in Ferguson which has sparked protests in more than 100 cities across the US.

“What we have in the United States is a worse oppression than we had in the 1960s because now it’s all justified.”

“These new police departments are getting weapons from the military,” and it has made police in America “military garrisons”, Imam Musa said. “They are not policing us any more, they are oppressing us.”

Imam Musa said there is a picture of Imam Jamil al-Amin, Imam Luqman, and “a picture of me” on the Internet.

The message of this picture, Imam Musa says, is “Look at your two friends, if you don’t shut up and be quiet, nigger, you are next,” he said. Musa’s grandson was assassinated and his son survived shot 6 gunshot wound. The police refused to investigate the shooting.

More about Imam al-Amin

Imam Jamil Abdullah al-Amin, formerly known as H. Rap Brown, played an early role in the Black Panther Party, and served five years in prison in New York for confronting drug traffickers, according to Amsterdam News. While in prison he converted to Islam in 1971, and moved to Atlanta after his release in 1976.

Despite becoming one of the leading lights of the US Muslim community, founding several business enterprises, a mosque and youth sports leagues, authorities pursued a decade’s worth of aggressive investigations resulting in a string false accusations and attempts to frame al-Amin.

In the incident where he was finally convicted, another man confessed to the killing of a sheriff’s deputy for which he has been jailed, but this fact was concealed from al-Amin’s defense lawyers.

AN/ISH

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