Friday, March 22, 2013


Freedom of the Press Foundation Publishes Leaked Audio of Bradley Manning’s Statement
March 11, 2013

Bradley Manning Support Network:

Demand ‘aiding the enemy’ charge is dropped! Call 202-685-2807

Bradley Manning Support Network

The Bradley Manning Support Network is joining with FireDogLake in a call-in action to protest the government’s decision to move ahead with all its charges against Bradley Manning. Call Maj. General Linnington, the presiding authority over the trial, and demand he step in to free Bradley. Call 202-685-2807.  

Call Maj. Gen. Linnington and tell him the “aiding the enemy” charge is an outrage and Bradley deserves to be free!

Maj. Gen. Linnington:

*If this mailbox is also full, leave the Department of Defense a written message:
[This site asks you to submit a question. So put your comments in the form of a question. Here's what I wrote: "If you are going to charge Pfc. Bradley Manning with 'aiding the enemy' because he revealed the truth about U.S. war crimes, then you'd better also charge the New York Times, the Washington Post and every other major and minor newspaper, magazine, and TV News broadcaster with the same 'crime.' Exposing the truth about war crimes is not a crime, it's an obligation! Will you Free Bradley Manning Now? He was only doing his duty!" ...BW]

One of the most moving aspect of Manning’s testimony was his explanation as to why he released the so-called “Collateral Murder” video, which shows the gunning down of two Reuters journalists and bystanders by apparently bloodthirsty and remorseless American soldiers in a US aircraft.

Manning described being deeply troubled by the video, especially the crew’s “lack of concern for human life” and lack of “concern for injured children at the scene.” Manning directly stated that he wanted the American public “to know that not all people were targets that needed to be neutralized” but “people living in the pressure cooker environment of asymmetrical warfare.”

Statements like these solidify what many of us had assumed for some time now: Pfc. Bradley Manning is an American hero who wanted to aid the public, not a traitor looking to ‘aid the enemy.’ That he risked his life to courageously expose this information and provoke a public debate to bring greater transparency to our foreign policy actions makes the insinuation that he ‘aided the enemy’ all the more absurd.
Please call Maj. General Linnington now!
It is clear that Pfc. Manning exposed these documents at great personal risk for our benefit. The least we can do is continue to support him in any way we can. Thank you for continuing to do so.


Petition to Free Lynne Stewart: Save Her Life - Release Her Now!

Urgent: Please sign the petition for compassionate release for Lynne Stewart

"There is immediate remedy available for Lynne Stewart. Under the 1984 Sentencing Act, after a prisoner request, the Bureau of Prisons can file a motion with the Court to reduce sentences “for extraordinary and compelling reasons.” Life threatening illness is foremost among these and Lynne Stewart meets every rational and humane criterion for compassionate release."
Here is the link to read and sign the whole petition:

In the event that your computer has an older operating system and browser, send your support for the petition to so we can incorporate your name in the list of signers.

For more information, go to
Write to Lynne Stewart at:
Lynne Stewart #53504-054

Federal Medical Center, Carswell
PO Box 27137
Fort Worth, TX 76127


Rally to Save Saturday Mail Delivery 3/24/13
Join the National Association of Letter Carriers Local 214 for a National Day of Action to Save Saturday Delivery.
WHAT: Rally to Save Saturday Mail Delivery
WHEN: Sunday, March 24th from 11:30 AM to 3:00 PM
WHERE: Post Office at 1640 Stockton Street, San Francisco (at Filbert)

FILM: Crimes of Police screens April 4th at the Grand Lake Theater!

Where else would a documentary film on Police Brutality screen opening night besides the 11th Oakland International Film Festival?



ANNOUNCING:  IZ, by Robert Davis, originally published by Lost Books Press, is now available on Kindle for $7.

       This odyssey of a 13 yr. old musical prodigy born into a family of hustlers, criminals and fanatics, takes place at the height of the Vietnam War. It has been called “a masterpiece,” “porno,” “the product of a deranged mind,” “a wonderful comic romp,” and various unmentionable things. When it first appeared in 1995, it won no awards and sold few copies. Very few – and those mainly to relatives and friends who after reading it quit speaking to the author.

       But thanks to cheap digital publishing, the world may now be ready for IZ.

       Izzy Aronson, on Kindle, is definitely ready for the world.
[Just had to pass this around. It's a great little novel with a real flavor of San Francisco in those times....Bonnie Weinstein]


Bay Area United Against War Newsletter

Table of Contents:






A. ARTICLES IN FULL (Unless otherwise noted)


1) Trial to Start in Class Suit on Stop-and-Frisk Tactic
"Of the five million stops in New York that the police have recorded since 2004, some 88 percent of those encounters ended with the person’s walking away without a summons or an arrest. One of the core questions in the trial is whether that low rate of finding evidence of criminality suggests, as the plaintiffs claim, that many of the stops were baseless."
March 17, 2013

In one of the most significant courtroom tests of a key Bloomberg administration policy, a federal judge will begin hearing testimony on Monday in a trial to determine whether the New York Police Department has been unconstitutionally stopping black and Hispanic males in the street over the last decade.

The outcome of the trial in Federal District Court in Manhattan will help define the terms under which the department patrols large swaths of the city long after Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg leaves office, with the potential to affect the tenor of relations between the police and minority neighborhoods for years to come.

The political and symbolic stakes are high, too. The trial comes after years of a vigorous public debate over the Police Department’s growing reliance on stop-and-frisk tactics, which Mr. Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly have steadfastly defended as effective tools in reducing gun violence. They claim that the procedures have saved thousands of lives among young black and Hispanic males.

Expected to last well into May, the trial will feature testimony from current and former police officials, as well as secret station house audio recordings, which the lawyers bringing the suit say were recorded by police whistle-blowers to demonstrate the pressure that officers are under to make stops.

Although the courtroom will hear from 11 black or biracial men and a Hispanic woman about their experiences of being stopped repeatedly by the police, the class-action lawsuit — Floyd v. City of New York — claims to represent “hundreds of thousands if not millions of people” who experienced “suspicionless and race-based stops” by the city’s police officers.

The lead plaintiff, David Floyd, a medical student in the Bronx, was stopped twice, according to the suit. The first time was in April 2007, as he walked on the sidewalk; the following year, he said, he was stopped while standing outside his home, helping a neighbor try to get back inside an apartment after becoming locked out. (Mr. Floyd had retrieved a number of keys from his godmother, who owned the house, and was trying them one by one.) The police approached Mr. Floyd and the neighbor and detained them on suspicion of burglary, ordering Mr. Floyd against a wall and searching his pockets.

The trial’s outcome will be decided by a federal judge, Shira A. Scheindlin, who is currently hearing two related stop-and-frisk lawsuits. One of the suits already resulted in a lengthy hearing held late last year, which included testimony by both police officials and Bronx residents who had been stopped.

But that suit deals with only a small number of stops at private residential buildings in the Bronx, whose landlords had authorized the police to patrol there. In that case, Judge Scheindlin has issued a preliminary ruling that many of the stops at issue were unconstitutional, a ruling that would seem troublesome for the city in the Floyd case.

The third lawsuit, still a long way from trial, concerns stops in public housing projects.

But the Floyd suit, which was filed in 2008, challenges the largest number of stops — several million in recent years — and embodies the stop-and-frisk debate most closely. The trial centers on whether street stops in the city have soared because, as the plaintiffs claim, the Police Department has increasingly ignored constitutional limits on its authority to detain people when they investigate behavior that they deem suspicious.

For decades, the Supreme Court has recognized police authority to detain someone while determining whether the person has committed a crime or is about to do so. But the legal precedent for such stops requires the police to have reasonable suspicion, a standard less stringent than the probable cause required for arrest. Nonetheless, the police cannot stop someone on the basis of a vague hunch.

Every day, judges across the country apply that standard in criminal cases, as they weigh the facts that led the police to approach a person they later arrested. The Floyd case asks Judge Scheindlin to consider not just one stop, but rather the Police Department’s overall practice.

Of the five million stops in New York that the police have recorded since 2004, some 88 percent of those encounters ended with the person’s walking away without a summons or an arrest. One of the core questions in the trial is whether that low rate of finding evidence of criminality suggests, as the plaintiffs claim, that many of the stops were baseless.

Lawyers for the plaintiffs hope to convince Judge Scheindlin that officers are under pressure to make stops as part of a quota system, and that police supervisors use subtle hints and coded language to encourage officers to stop young minority men. In response to the accusations, the Police Department has denied using a quota system and points to its written policy forbidding racial profiling.

“Minorities are overwhelmingly the victims of violent crime in New York City, and the neighborhoods in which they live demand and deserve the Police Department’s attention,” the city’s executive assistant corporation counsel, Celeste Koeleveld, said in a statement about the coming trial. “Precinct by precinct, the rates at which minorities are stopped are consistent with the rates at which minorities are identified as crime suspects.”

The suit alleges that the stops violate the 4th Amendment’s prohibition against unreasonable search and seizure, as well as the 14th Amendment’s equal protection clause.

The lawsuit, brought by lawyers from the Center for Constitutional Rights and elsewhere, asks Judge Scheindlin to create “a process for obtaining community input” to change the stop-and-frisk practices and to appoint a monitor to ensure that the department’s policies comply with the Constitution.


2) Unwanted Electronic Gear Rising in Toxic Piles
[Seems to me these costs should be covered by the]
March 18, 2013

Last year, two inspectors from California’s hazardous waste agency were visiting an electronics recycling company near Fresno for a routine review of paperwork when they came across a warehouse the size of a football field, packed with tens of thousands of old computer monitors and televisions.

The crumbling cardboard boxes, stacked in teetering rows, 9 feet high and 14 feet deep, were so sprawling that the inspectors needed cellphones to keep track of each other. The layer of broken glass on the floor and the lead-laden dust in the air was so thick that the inspectors soon left over safety concerns. Weeks later, the owner of the recycling company disappeared, abandoning the waste, and leaving behind a toxic hazard and a costly cleanup for the state and the warehouse’s owner.

As recently as a few years ago, broken monitors and televisions like those piled in the warehouse were being recycled profitably. The big, glassy funnels inside these machines — known as cathode ray tubes, or CRTs — were melted down and turned into new ones.

But flat-screen technology has made those monitors and televisions obsolete, decimating the demand for the recycled tube glass used in them and creating what industry experts call a “glass tsunami” as stockpiles of the useless material accumulate across the country.

The predicament has highlighted how small changes in the marketplace can suddenly transform a product into a liability and demonstrates the difficulties that federal and state environmental regulators face in keeping up with these rapid shifts.

“Lots of smaller recyclers are in over their heads, and the risk that they might abandon their stockpiles is very real,” said Jason Linnell of the Electronics Recycling Coordination Clearinghouse, an organization that represents state environmental regulators, electronics manufacturers and recyclers. In February, the group sent a letter to the Environmental Protection Agency asking for immediate help dealing with the rapidly growing stockpiles of the glass, much of which contains lead.

With so few buyers of the leaded glass from the old monitors and televisions, recyclers have collected payments from states and electronics companies to get rid of the old machines. A small number of recyclers have developed new technology for cleaning the lead from the tube glass, but the bulk of this waste is being stored, sent to landfills or smelters, or disposed of in other ways that experts say are environmentally destructive.

In 2004, recyclers were paid more than $200 a ton to provide glass from these monitors for use in new cathode ray tubes. The same companies now have to pay more than $200 a ton to get anyone to take the glass off their hands.

So instead of recycling the waste, many recyclers have been storing millions of the monitors in warehouses, according to industry officials and experts. The practice is sometimes illegal since there are federal limits on how long a company can house the tubes, which are environmentally dangerous. Each one can include up to eight pounds of lead.

The scrap metal industry estimates that the amount of electronic waste has more than doubled in the past five years.

A little over a decade ago, there were at least 12 plants in the United States and 13 more worldwide that were taking these old televisions and monitors and using the cathode ray tube glass to produce new tubes. But now, there are only two plants in India doing this work.

In 2009, after television broadcasters turned off their analog signals nationwide in favor of digital, millions of people threw away their old televisions and replaced them with sleeker flat-screen models. Since then, thousands of pounds of old televisions and other electronic waste have been surreptitiously unloaded at landfills in Nevada and Ohio and on roadsides in California and Maine.

Most experts say that the larger solution to the growing electronic waste problem is for technology companies to design products that last longer, use fewer toxic components and are more easily recycled. Much of the industry, however, seems to be heading in the opposite direction.

Cathode ray tubes have been largely replaced by flat panels that use fluorescent lights with highly toxic mercury in them, said Jim Puckett, director of Basel Action Network, an environmental advocacy group. Used panel screens from LCD televisions and monitors, for example, do not have much recycling value, so many recyclers are sending them to landfills.

State and federal environmental policies have also become victims of their own success. Over the past decade, environmental regulators have promoted “take-back” programs to persuade people to hand in the more than 200 million old televisions and broken computer monitors that Americans are thought to have stored away in closets, garages and basements.

The same programs have courted businesses to divert their electronic waste away from landfills to avoid the hazardous chemicals in this toxic trash from leaching into groundwater. More than 290,000 tons of the high-tech castoffs are now directed away from landfills and toward recyclers each year.

“The problem now is that the collection of this waste has never been higher, but demand for the glass that comes from it has never been lower,” said Neil Peters-Michaud, the chief executive of Cascade Asset Management, a recycling company.

Roughly 660 million pounds of the glass is being stored in warehouses across the country, and it will cost $85 million to $360 million to responsibly recycle it, according to a report released in December by TransparentPlanet, an organization focused on electronic waste research.

The stockpiling problem is especially worrisome to electronics companies and to state and federal officials since they might have to pick up part of the tab if the stockpiles were abandoned and declared federal Superfund sites.

At least 22 states have laws that make electronics manufacturers like Sony, Toshiba and Apple financially responsible for recycling their old products. But lack of oversight of these programs has led to rampant fraud. In one tactic, quietly known in the industry as “paper transactions,” recyclers buy paperwork to indicate that they collected a certain amount of electronic waste that they never actually collected.

The Obama administration, more than any of its predecessors, has strengthened oversight of electronic waste. In 2012, the General Services Administration enacted rules discouraging all agencies and federal contractors from disposing of it in landfills. The federal government, which is among the world’s largest producer of electronic waste, disposes more than 10,000 computers a week on average.

Federal agencies are failing to sufficiently track their electronic waste, and large amounts of it are still being disposed of through public or online auctions, according to a Government Accountability Office report last year. In these auctions, the waste is often sold to a first layer of contractors who promise to handle it appropriately, only to have the most toxic portion subsequently sold to subcontractors who move it around as they wish.

Some of this waste is dumped illegally in developing countries, the G.A.O. found. Congress is considering legislation to ban certain types of unprocessed and nonworking electronics and electronic waste from being exported to developing countries from the United States.

Recyclers say there is still money to be made on processing the old monitors and televisions if companies charge a price that more genuinely reflects the expense of disposing of the glass properly. But practices like “greenwashing,” whereby companies pretend to engage in environmentally responsible disposal practices, hinder such progress.

“They’re skimming off the computers, cellphones and printers that can be recycled profitably because they have more precious metals,” said Karrie Gibson, the chief executive of Vintage Tech Recyclers. “Then they stockpile the CRTs, or dump it in landfills or abroad.”

The sheer quantity of the glass accumulating at some recycling plants has contributed to environmental and workplace safety problems. In Yuma, Ariz., for example, Dlubak Glass, one of the country’s largest recyclers of glass from televisions and monitors, found itself overwhelmed.

When state regulators visited the site in 2009, they found a mountain of the lead-rich glass, several stories tall. Dust from the shimmering mound of recycled glass had contaminated the surrounding soil, including a nearby orchard, with lead at 75 times the federal limit, according to state documents.

“We have it entirely under control now,” said Herb Schall, a Dlubak plant manager.

In September, California passed an emergency measure allowing companies to send monitors and televisions to hazardous landfills for the next two years.

Charlotte Fadipe, a spokeswoman for the California Department of Toxic Substances Control, said her office’s investigation of the abandoned warehouse near Fresno is continuing, and investigators are still trying to locate Charles Li, the owner of the company, TRI Products.

Over the past four years, TRI has been paid more than $1 million by the state to recycle electronic waste from local schools, hospitals and federal agencies, including the F.B.I., the I.R.S. and Immigration and Customs Enforcement, according to state and company documents.

After a reporter found him to be running another electronic waste disposal company, Mr. Li did not respond. But when he was contacted online by another recycler and asked whether he was still looking to buy electronic waste, he immediately replied yes, with one caveat.

“Right now, we can take PC, server, telephone, printer and household e-waste,” he wrote. “I cannot take your CRT/TV as e-waste because we don’t have equipment to recycle the tubes.”


3) Blackout Halts Cooling System at Fukushima Plant
March 19, 2013

TOKYO — Two pools for storing spent nuclear fuel remained without vital cooling systems more than 24 hours after a partial power failure at the stricken Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant in Japan on Tuesday, the operator said. The company said it had restored the flow of cooling water to two other pools also affected by the blackout.

The operator, Tokyo Electric Power Company, said temperatures in the two uncooled pools still remain well within safe levels. It said its engineers were trying to repair a faulty switchboard that it blamed for the outage that began on Monday night, halting pumps that inject cooling water into the four pools located near the No. 1, No. 3 and No. 4 reactors.

All three of those reactor buildings, which also house the pools, were damaged by hydrogen explosions caused by the triple meltdown at the plant two years ago, after a huge earthquake and tsunami destroyed reactor cooling systems. The company, known as Tepco, said the current loss of cooling water was manageable because temperatures would remain at safe levels for at least four days, and the plant also has backup systems.

Still, the problems underscore the continuing vulnerability of the plant, which is beginning a complex cleanup of the three damaged reactors that is expected to take decades. Some experts have warned that the current cooling systems, some of which were hastily built by engineers frantically struggling to regain control of the overheating reactors, could be knocked out by another large earthquake.

"Fukushima Daiichi still runs on makeshift equipment, and we are trying to switch to something more permanent and dependable," a Tepco spokesman, Masayuki Ono, told reporters. "Considering the equipment situation, we may be pushing a little too hard."

Much of the ongoing concern has focused on the pools near the reactors that are used to store spent fuel rods. These contain far more radioactive material and have less shielding from the outside than the reactors, raising the specter of another massive release of contaminated particles.

The four pools affected by Monday’s blackout contained more than 8,000 highly contaminated fuel rods, Tepco said. That would be enough to release far more radioactive material than the original accident in March 2011, which forced the evacuation of some 160,000 residents in northeastern Japan. Many of those evacuees still live in temporary shelters and may never be able to return home.

On Tuesday, Tepco said it had restored cooling to two of the four pools by starting backup systems. It said it expected to soon resume cooling at a third pool, though restoring cooling water to the fourth pool might take until Wednesday.

Tepco said it was investigating the cause of the current blackout, which it believes it has traced to the switchboard and attached cables. The company said it was readying a replacement switchboard in case it cannot fix the original one.

It said the failure also briefly cut off electricity to the command center at the plant, though power was quickly restored.

In a statement, the operator said the temperatures in the pool near the No. 4 reactor rose the highest since losing power, to 30 degrees Celsius, still well below the safety threshold of 65 degrees Celsius. Cooling systems at the No. 4 pool were restored Tuesday afternoon, the company said.

The No. 4 pool has been a source of concern before, largely because the building in which it is housed was almost totally destroyed during the original accident by a hydrogen blast caused by melting atomic fuel. The explosion left the pool exposed to the outside air. Tepco has been building a new, more protected pool to which it plans to move the spent fuel rods.


4)  A Focus on 3 Encounters in a Stop-and-Frisk Trial
March 18, 2013

The first time the police stopped and then frisked him on his block in the Bronx, David Floyd remembered wanting only “to get home” and “be in my own space.” The second time it happened, Mr. Floyd testified, he was left with the impression that “I needed to stay in my place, and my place was in my home.”

Mr. Floyd’s testimony on Monday in Federal District Court in Manhattan about his encounters with the police, in 2007 and 2008, came during the first day of a trial in a class-action lawsuit over whether the New York Police Department has been unconstitutionally stopping hundreds of thousands, or even millions, of black and Hispanic men and boys in the street.

While the judge deciding the case, Shira A. Scheindlin, will consider the significance of the soaring number of recorded street stops by the police over the last decade, the testimony on Monday focused on just three specific encounters. Two were police stops of Mr. Floyd, now a 33-year-old medical student in Havana, and the third was a stop of a Manhattan teenager, Devin Almonor, who testified that the police stopped, frisked and ultimately arrested him when he was 13, as he walked home in Hamilton Heights.

Both Mr. Floyd and Mr. Almonor are black, and Mr. Almonor, now 16, testified that he could think of “no other reason” besides race that police officers would have stopped him on that March night in 2010. A lawyer for the city, Suzanna Publicker, suggested that the cellphone Mr. Almonor had in his front pocket might have “created a bulge,” hinting that it might have resembled a concealed weapon to a police officer.

None of the officers involved in the stops testified on Monday.

The trial, which is expected to last six weeks, is one of the most significant courtroom tests of a crucial Bloomberg administration policy, and the stakes are high for the city. Lawyers for the plaintiffs are asking Judge Scheindlin to create “a process for obtaining community input” to influence the Police Department’s stop-and-frisk practices and also to appoint a monitor to ensure that the department’s policies comply with the United States Constitution.

During opening arguments on Monday, a lawyer for the city, Heidi Grossman, said that plaintiffs sought “to divest the N.Y.P.D. of control over how the N.Y.P.D. investigates crime.”

While acknowledging that “errors and mistakes may happen in the area of stops and frisks,” Ms. Grossman said there was no evidence of a “constitutional deficiency” or a “widespread pattern of illegal stops.”

The reason the stops overwhelmingly involved black and Hispanic men was not the practice of racial profiling, she said, but the department’s use of “a disproportionate share of resources on minority neighborhoods, where crime is highest.”

That, Ms. Grossman said, “is the nature of hot-spot policing.” As crime across much of the city has drastically receded over the last two decades, Ms. Grossman said, the department has dispatched officers to places where crime stubbornly persists.

But a lawyer for the plaintiffs, Darius Charney of the Center for Constitutional Rights, said police officers were stopping people without any legitimate grounds for suspecting them of criminal behavior.

“What the N.Y.P.D. calls proactive, the black and Hispanic residents of this city have experienced as arbitrary, unnecessary and unconstitutional harassment,” Mr. Charney said.

Mr. Almonor said he had been stopped after spending the day riding a bike and playing video games with a friend. After walking the friend to his bus stop and waiting with him there, Mr. Almonor headed home, pausing for a time in front of a bodega after running into friends.

As Mr. Almonor continued on his way, two plainclothes officers emerged from a car to question him.

“I told them I was 13,” Mr. Almonor said. “After they patted me down, they pushed me up against the car.”

He added that the officers then handcuffed him. “I was crying,” he said.

The situation escalated, and both of Mr. Almonor’s parents were later arrested at the 30th Precinct house in East Harlem, where they had gone to demand the release of their son, though that was not discussed in court on Monday. Mr. Almonor’s father, a retired officer, was subsequently tried and acquitted on charges of punching a female police officer during the confrontation over his son’s arrest.


"It is devastating, totally unbelievable. Is this in a 'democracy,' the only super-power? We must contact heads of churches and other religious bodies in the U.S. and elsewhere – civil rights leaders, lawyers' organizations.
Praying God's blessings on your efforts."
By Desmond Tutu
VIA email

Lynne Stewart is renowned throughout the United States as a criminal defense lawyer who, for over 30 years, defended the poor, the disadvantaged and those targeted by the police and the State.

Such has been her reputation as a fearless lawyer ready to challenge those in power that judges assigned her routinely to act for defendants whom no attorney was willing to represent.

Now, Lynne Stewart needs our urgent help or she may die in prison.

In 1995, Lynne Stewart was appointed by a federal court to represent the blind Egyptian cleric Sheikh Omar Abdel Rahman, who was accused of conspiring to blow up New York landmarks. She became co-counsel  with former Attorney General Ramsey Clark and renowned civil liberties attorney Abdeen Jabaar.

Despite Lynne Stewart having marshaled evidence demonstrating the innocence of her client, and pointing indisputably to the hand of the government in the plots attributed to her client, Sheikh Omar Abdel Rahman was convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment plus 65 years!

Special Administrative Measures (SAMS) were imposed, violating first, fifth and sixth amendment rights of defendants and attorneys alike.
These measures placed severe restrictions on any communication of Sheikh Omar Abdel Rahman communication with the outside world.

On April 9, 2002, Attorney General Ashcroft made an unprecedented appearance on the Late Night Show of David Letterman, a nationally viewed entertainment talk-show, to announce that the Justice Department was prosecutIng Lynne Stewart for providing "material aid to a terrorist organization." 

This "material aid" was her own person and her function as defense attorney. The "material aid" consisted of a Press Release conveying the views of the Sheikh and given to a Reuter's correspondent - an action protected by the first amendment and the free speech rights of Sheikh Omar Abdel Rahman and Lynne Stewart alike.

The Justice Department of George Bush and of Barack Obama prosecuted Lynne Stewart and demanded 30 years in prison. This attack upon due process and basic democratic rights was aimed at every attorney in the United States. The intent was and remains to destroy democratic rights and protections that date to Magna Carta.

Lynne Stewart was railroaded to prison in a show trial evocative of the era of Joseph Stalin. Broad public protest caused presiding Judge John Koetl to declare Lynne Stewart  "an asset to the nation" while sentencing her to 28 months in federal prison. 

Pressed by the Justice Department, the Appellate Court, breaking precedent, directed Judge Koetl to increase her sentence drastically, to revoke her bail and remand her to prison despite the fact that Lynne Stewart had the right to appeal her conviction to the Supreme Court.
Judge Koetl, yielding to this immense pressure, increased his original 28 month sentence to ten years. This has become, effectively, a death sentence for Lynne Stewart. Urgent surgery was delayed 18 months by the prison authorities. Her breast cancer, in remission before imprisonment, metastasized and spread to her lymph nodes, bones and lungs.

For every person of conscience, there is no time to lose. We must mobilize world opinion to stop the judicial and political murder of Lynne Stewart, an ominous measure of the mass repression in preparation for working people and the oppressed.

The campaign to save the life of Lynne Stewart is a first line of defense against a ruling class rapidly destroying the rights obtained through generations of struggle as a ruthless system prepares to subjugate us all.


[Note: If you are using a computer with an older operating system and browser, your signature will not register on If that case, PLEASE, send your support to " and we shall add you to the list of petition signatories.]

Click on this url link to sign the petition:


Lynne Stewart has devoted her life to the oppressed – a constant advocate for the countless many deprived in the United States of their freedom and their rights.

Unjustly charged and convicted for the “crime” of providing her client with a fearless defense, the prosecution of Lynne Stewart is an assault upon the basic freedoms of us all.

After years of post-conviction freedom, her bail was revoked arbitrarily and her imprisonment ordered, precluding surgery she had scheduled in a major New York hospital.

The sinister meaning of the relentless persecution of Lynne Stewart is unmistakably clear. Given her age and precarious health, the ten-year sentence she is serving is a virtual death sentence.

Since her imprisonment in the Federal Prison in Carswell, Texas her urgent need for surgery was delayed 18 months – so long, that the operating physician pronounced the condition as “the worst he had seen.”

Now, breast cancer, which had been in remission prior to her imprisonment, has reached Stage Four. It has appeared in her lymph nodes, on her shoulder, in her bones and her lungs.

Her daughter, a physician, has sounded the alarm: “Under the best of circumstances, Lynne would be in a battle of the most serious consequences with dangerous odds. With cancer and cancer treatment, the complications can be as debilitating and as dangerous as the cancer itself.”

In her current setting, where trips to physicians involve attempting to walk with 10 pounds of shackles on her wrists and ankles, with connecting chains, Lynne Stewart has lacked ready access to physicians and specialists under conditions compatible with medical success.

It can take weeks to see a medical provider in prison conditions. It can take weeks to report physical changes and learn the results of treatment; and when held in the hospital, Lynne has been shackled wrist and ankle to the bed.

This medieval “shackling” has little to do with any appropriate prison control. She is obviously not an escape risk.

We demand abolition of this practice for all prisoners, let alone those facing surgery and the urgent necessity of care and recovery.

It amounts to cruel and unusual punishment, in violation of human rights.

There is immediate remedy available for Lynne Stewart. Under the 1984 Sentencing Act, after a prisoner request, the Bureau of Prisons can file a motion with the Court to reduce sentences “for extraordinary and compelling reasons.” Life threatening illness is foremost among these and Lynne Stewart meets every rational and humane criterion for compassionate release.

To misconstrue the gravamen of this compassionate release by conditioning such upon being at death’s door – released, if at all, solely to die – is a cruel mockery converting a prison sentence, wholly undeserved, into a death sentence.

The New York Times, in an editorial (2/12), has excoriated the Bureau of Prisons for their restrictive crippling of this program. In a 20-year period, the Bureau released a scant 492 persons – an average of 24 a year out of a population that exceeds 220,000.

We cry out against the bureaucratic murder of Lynne Stewart.

We demand Lynne Stewart’s immediate release to receive urgent medical care in a supportive environment indispensable to the prospect of her survival and call upon the Bureau of Prisons to act immediately.

If Lynne’s original sentence of 28 months had not been unreasonably, punitively increased to 10 years, she would be home now — where her medical care would be by her choice and where those who love her best would care for her. Her isolation from this loving care would end.

Prevent this cruelty to Lynne Stewart whose lifelong commitment to justice is now a struggle for her life.

Free Lynne Stewart Now!

Ralph Poynter and Family


6) Britain: Girl Shot by Taliban Returns to the Classroom
March 19, 2013

 Malala Yousafzai, the 15-year-old Pakistani campaigner for girls’ education who was gravely wounded by the Taliban in October, is back in school for the first time since the attack, according to a statement by her family. Ms. Yousafzai, shown with her father, is now enrolled full time at Edgbaston, a private girls’ high school in Birmingham, England, where her family now lives and where she underwent extensive medical treatment in recent months. “I miss my classmates from Pakistan very much, but I am looking forward to meeting my teachers and making new friends here in Birmingham,” she was quoted as saying in the statement.


7) Minority Groups Remain Outnumbered at Teaching Programs, Study Reports
"According to a study being released Wednesday by the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education, which represents colleges and universities with teacher certification programs, 82 percent of candidates who received bachelor’s degrees in education in 2009-10 and 2010-11 were white."
March 19, 2013

Despite major changes in the racial makeup of American public school students, the people training to be teachers are still predominantly white.

According to a study being released Wednesday by the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education, which represents colleges and universities with teacher certification programs, 82 percent of candidates who received bachelor’s degrees in education in 2009-10 and 2010-11 were white.

By contrast, census figures show that close to half of all children under 5 in 2008 were members of a racial or ethnic minority.

“We’re finding that college-bound minority students have so many career options,” said Sharon P. Robinson, the president of the association. “We have to develop some specific recruitment strategies to attract our share of those students into those teacher education programs.”

Even in programs that award teaching certificates to candidates who do not obtain full education degrees, 76 percent of the students are white.

Ms. Robinson said the recruiting problem was compounded by the fact that minority students in general were not enrolling in college at as high a rate as white students.

The study, which surveyed close to 700 colleges and universities that train just under two-thirds of new teachers, also found that few candidates graduate with credentials to teach math, science, special education or English as a second language, all subjects that experts say are increasingly important to prepare students for jobs and to meet the demands of an increasingly diverse student population.

It is particularly difficult to recruit qualified mathematicians and scientists as teachers because they can earn much higher salaries in other professions.

“In their first year as an engineer, they’ll earn more than a teacher will ever earn over a 30-year career,” said Rick Ginsberg, the dean of the School of Education at the University of Kansas.

Ms. Robinson said she feared that recent changes in public education policy as well as statements about failing schools could deter candidates. “We’ve been through a phase where all the target for fixing everything is to change out the teachers,” Ms. Robinson said. “So we are finding recruitment is down in educator preparation programs.”

The study found that although teacher preparation programs may have relatively low eligibility requirements, candidates who enroll have strong academic records.

Candidates for bachelor’s degrees in education had a mean grade point average of 3.24, well above the average entrance requirement of 2.6.

The study does not cover programs like Teach for America that recruit college graduates and put them in classrooms without education degrees or certificates.


8)  The War in Washington Square
March 20, 2013

LAST week the faculty of arts and science of New York University approved a no-confidence resolution against the university’s president, John Sexton. I had introduced the resolution in December, and in the ensuing months it generated one of the largest campus debates in recent memory. The final no-confidence vote, the first in N.Y.U. history, was decisive: 298 to 224.

How did Dr. Sexton lose the confidence of so many faculty members? By ignoring us. Of course, many professors everywhere feel overlooked by today’s generation of jet-setting university presidents. But we have very specific complaints: above all, Dr. Sexton has consistently refused to address concerns about plans to expand N.Y.U. offices and dorms into the part of Greenwich Village south of Manhattan’s Washington Square Park, where many of us live.

This expansion plan is known as N.Y.U. 2031, indicating the year in which all the building will be complete. The very name told us that we’d be living on a construction site for a couple of decades.

Not surprisingly, this did not go over very well with many faculty members. We were also concerned about where the money would come from to pay for this expansion, as no business plan for the project has been made public.

Thirty-nine departments and schools passed resolutions last year against the 2031 plan. These resolutions were typically passed unanimously or nearly unanimously. And yet Dr. Sexton’s response was a deafening silence.

Many of us are also concerned with Dr. Sexton’s plans to expand N.Y.U. overseas, including branch campuses in Abu Dhabi and Shanghai, with inadequate faculty involvement or oversight. It is doubtful that faculty members would have chosen to build campuses in countries where academic freedom, and free speech generally, are so parlous.

As the faculty vote approached, more trouble arose for Dr. Sexton in the form of news reports about lavish compensation for N.Y.U. administrators. The central but by no means sole figure in this scandal is Jacob J. Lew, the Obama administration’s new Treasury secretary, who worked at N.Y.U. in the early 2000s for a salary that eventually reached $900,000, larger even than Dr. Sexton’s at the time.

Mr. Lew received loans to buy a nice home, which apparently were largely forgiven. He also received a severance of some $700,000 when he left for a well-paid position at Citigroup. Severance? For someone who leaves voluntarily?

Dr. Sexton himself is to receive a salary of more than $1.4 million this year, and a “length of service” bonus of $2.5 million in 2015. (Full disclosure: the university gave me a set of mugs when I completed 25 years of teaching.) And he will receive $800,000 a year after he retires.

Other top administrators make similarly extravagant salaries. Some experts believe there may even be something illegal in the way Dr. Sexton has rewarded them; N.Y.U.’s chapter of the American Association of University Professors has asked New York States’s attorney general to investigate.

All of which raises a question for many N.Y.U. faculty members: Should administrators be able to enrich themselves like this at educational institutions? N.Y.U. is not a Wall Street firm, but a tax-exempt university that gets millions in taxpayer dollars, not least from student loans. In fact, our students have the highest total debt load of any university in the country. Rather than expanding, or paying huge salaries to top administrators, why doesn’t N.Y.U. do more to help its alumni pay off their debts?

These revelations undoubtedly hurt Dr. Sexton in the run-up to the no-confidence vote. That may be why he has recently professed his sincere belief in the principle of “shared governance,” the idea that faculty members as well as administrators should steer universities. And he admitted that he had not done all that he might to include faculty in the decision-making process at N.Y.U.

These declarations clearly fell on deaf ears. Many professors not only lack confidence in Dr. Sexton’s leadership, but they also do not trust what he says.

N.Y.U.’s trustees say they still have confidence in Dr. Sexton, so he is not about to lose his job anytime soon. But how long can a university president continue in office when he has lost the support of so many faculty members?

One hopes that Dr. Sexton himself will soon come to understand that N.Y.U. would be better off with a more trusted and less divisive leader.

Jeff Goodwin is a professor of sociology at New York University.


9) Number of Hunger Strikers Surges at Guantánamo
March 20, 2013

WASHINGTON — A hunger strike by detainees who have been held for years without trial at the military prison at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, has grown to involve at least 25 prisoners, the Defense Department disclosed Wednesday.

That number includes eight who are being force-fed a nutritional supplement through a hose snaked into their nose while they are restrained in a chair.

There have long been about half a dozen prisoners at Guantánamo who refuse to eat and have been kept alive by force-feeding. But the number refusing meals among the population of 166 inmates has recently surged.

According to the military’s count, as of March 15 there were 14 officially recognized hunger strikers. That number swelled to 21 by Monday and 24 by Tuesday, and is now 25, said Capt. Robert Durand, a spokesman for the prison. Two have been hospitalized for dehydration, he added.

Lawyers representing some of the detainees in habeas corpus lawsuits, who communicate with them during visits to the island and by phone, say that the number is significantly higher than the official count. The military says it is using criteria developed by the civilian Bureau of Prisons, which generally counts a prisoner who refuses nine straight meals as a hunger striker.

The origins of the hunger strike are disputed. David H. Remes, a lawyer for several Yemeni detainees who were cleared for repatriation years ago but remain imprisoned because of poor security conditions in Yemen, said he was recently told by clients that prison officials had started searching Korans, which inmates considered to be religious desecration, in a way they had not done since 2006.

A group of lawyers representing detainees, including Mr. Remes, sent letters on March 4 and March 14 to military officials raising alarm about the strike and asking for attention to alleviate its underlying causes, citing the purported Koran searches and, in the March 14 letter, a wider set of “regressive practices at the prison taking place in recent months, which our clients have described as a return to an older regime at Guantánamo that was widely identified with the mistreatment of detainees.”

Captain Durand, however, said that there had been no change to longstanding procedures for searching the Korans, in which prison interpreters, who are Muslims, touch the book. In a lengthy statement, he argued that the detainees were coordinating to “fabricate” claims of personal or Koran abuse as a tactic for garnering news media attention.

Both Mr. Remes and military officials largely agreed, however, that a significant factor in the recent unrest was the collapse of hopes that the United States government would at some point let them go.

Mr. Remes said that while the “spark” was the search of the Korans, “the underlying problem is their frustration at being held without trial going into their 11th year with no end in sight.”

Separately, in testimony before the House Armed Services Committee, General John F. Kelly of the Marines, who oversees Guantánamo as the leader of the United States Southern Command, also attributed the hunger strikes to the loss of optimism, saying the detainees were “devastated” by signs that the Obama administration no longer saw closing the prison as a realistic priority.

“So that has caused them to become frustrated, and they want to get this — I think, turn the heat up, get it back in the media,” General Kelly said.

The hunger strike appears to be concentrated in Camp 6, where long-term detainees who comply with prison rules and who are not facing any charges before a military commission live in communal housing. Several detainees who were deemed by the medical staff to require nutritional supplements and balked at the procedure have now been moved to Camp 5, where noncompliant prisoners are housed in individual cells, Captain Durand said.

In 2009, President Obama ordered that the prison be closed by the end of his first year in office. But the effort to wind it down collapsed as Congress, concerned about some former detainees who were linked to terrorist activities, has imposed an increasingly steep set of obstacles to any additional transfers.

As a result, in 2012 only four prisoners left the island. A fifth prisoner, who had been repeatedly cleared for repatriation under both the Bush and Obama administrations and was ordered freed by a Federal District Court judge, only to have that order overturned by an appeals court, apparently committed suicide.

In his testimony, General Kelly also talked about challenges that were arising as it appeared as if the prison would remain open indefinitely. For example, Congress has blocked any transfer of detainees onto American soil, but the Guantánamo hospital is not equipped to provide a higher level of care for the aging inmate population if a need arises for treatment of ailments like cancer or kidney or heart disease.

He also pointed to the high maintenance costs at the prison, saying that “everything that’s built down there is at least twice as expensive,” and that the facility was not built to be permanent. A series of projects — like rebuilding the guard force’s barracks and a dining hall that is “literally falling apart” — will cost about $150 million.

“These are things that we have to do right now,” he said. “I’m assuming Guantánamo will be closed someday, but if we look into the past 11 years, it was supposed to be temporary. Who knows where it’s going?”

10) Windfalls for Wall Street Executives Taking Jobs in Government

People usually say they go into government to perform public service. If they came from Wall Street, however, their former employers often provide another service.

Banks, including JPMorgan Chase, Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley, all have provisions that allow acceleration of payments owed to senior executives if they take government jobs, a new study finds.

Such a benefit was highlighted recently during the confirmation hearing for Jacob J. Lew as Treasury secretary. His previous employer, Citigroup, had guaranteed him preferential financial treatment if he were to leave to take a job in the government. When Mr. Lew left Citigroup he held stock that he could not immediately cash worth as much as $500,000, according to a government filing.

“These companies seem to be giving a special deal to executives who become government officials,” says the study, to be released Thursday by the Project on Government Oversight. “In exchange, the companies may end up with friends in high places who understand their business, sympathize with it, and can craft policies in its favor.”

The study looked at the compensation policies of several financial institutions.

The accelerated vesting of Mr. Lew’s shares is part of a larger debate on Wall Street and in Washington, where people frequently move back and forth, creating concern that government officials may favor their old colleagues on Wall Street.

The debate has heated up recently as top officials from the Securities and Exchange Commission leave for new jobs, possibly on Wall Street, while the White House has nominated Mary Jo White, a lawyer who has represented Wall Street firms, to run the S.E.C.

Some Wall Street insiders contend that time spent on Wall Street does not compromise someone like Mr. Lew or Ms. White, saying that the experience sharpens their instincts and helps them understand how business actually works.

Firms that have contracts that provide for special treatment for employees who decide to go into government typically say it is intended to encourage public service, not to curry favor. The firms also note that employees on Wall Street and elsewhere are often required by law to sell their shares to avoid potential conflicts of interest and are limited in the amount of contact they can have with their former employer. The issue is simply more pronounced on Wall Street because executives are often paid in shares that vest over several years, rather than just cash.

One person who has gone from Wall Street to government, who asked not to be named because of a policy at his workplace prohibiting employees from speaking to the media, said he sold his stock at a depressed price for a job that paid millions of dollars less than what he was earning.

“I went into government because I believe in public service, not to help Wall Street,” he said.

Mr. Lew worked at Citigroup from 2006 to 2008. Under the terms of Mr. Lew’s contract with Citi, he kept certain bonus compensation if he left for a “high-level position with the United States government or regulatory body,” but not for a private sector competitor, said people with direct knowledge of the contract.

A Citigroup spokeswoman said it “routinely accommodates individuals who wish to leave the firm to pursue a position in government or nonprofit sector.”

Other Wall Street firms have compensation plans with language similar to Mr. Lew’s. They do not provide for a bonus for government service, but rather allow for special treatment of compensation that has already been granted but not paid out.

On Wall Street, employees are often paid in the form of shares that they cannot cash for years. These contracts allow the employees to cash the shares early. If they were leaving for a rival firm, however, they would most likely forfeit that compensation.

In recent years, dozens of people have left finance to work for government.

Thomas R. Nides, for example, left Morgan Stanley in 2010 to join the Obama administration as deputy secretary of state for management and resources. He sold shares of Morgan Stanley at the time, disclosing to the government that the firm allowed him to cash out his shares ahead of schedule.

Mr. Nides, who received at least $5 million because of a stock acceleration, recently left government to return to Morgan Stanley as vice chairman. A Morgan Stanley spokesman declined to comment on the issue.

At Goldman, at least one of its compensation plans allows for a lump sum cash payment for certain stock grants that have been awarded but have not yet vested, according to a regulatory filing.

At least one of its former executives, Robert D. Hormats, received special financial treatment on some of his holdings, according to a government filing. Mr. Hormats, under secretary of state for economic growth, energy and the environment, wrote to the government upon taking that position that “Goldman Sachs will accelerate and pay out my restricted stock units, pursuant to written company policy.”

Those payments are allowed. In 1990, the Supreme Court ruled that Boeing was within its rights to make lump sum severance payments to several employees when they quit Boeing to take senior military posts.

The Project on Government Oversight says the rules governing executive sales of stock were tightened in 2004, as a response to the collapse of the energy company Enron. In the weeks before filing for bankruptcy, Enron had paid out millions of dollars in accelerated payments to senior executives. Now it is much harder for companies to speed up stock payments, but there is a government service exemption that allows for some leeway.


11) Staking a Claim in South America
March 21, 2013

THE BUZZ IS LOUD these days about South Americans buying Miami and New York condos at a furious pace, helping to stoke high-end residential boomlets in those cities. But back home, their own real estate markets have started to lure investment from big-name American real estate companies.

Developers like the Related Group of Florida, in a joint venture with the Related Companies based in New York, and Donald J. Trump, as well as real estate investors like the billionaire Sam Zell, are working to build residential housing and commercial spaces in Brazil, Uruguay and Colombia.

For decades, those countries were not seen as very safe bets by many foreign real estate developers. Now Brazil, especially, has become the object of a lot of attention. Take a gander at the numbers and you quickly understand why.

The average price of a four-bedroom apartment in Ipanema, one of the posh beach neighborhoods in Rio de Janeiro, rose nearly sixfold from 2008 to 2012, exceeding $2.5 million. The rise was helped by hype over large offshore oil finds and the announcement that Rio had won the 2016 Olympics. Even in Rio’s grittier downtown, one-bedroom apartments saw a threefold increase in sales price in those years. In São Paulo, Brazil’s largest city, average residential prices doubled during that period, to $335 per square foot. Construction of residential buildings, especially in São Paulo, where I lived in 2011 in the latter part of my time as a correspondent in Brazil, seemed to be nonstop only a few years ago. In the upscale neighborhood of Itaim Bibi I was literally surrounded by the construction of high-end condo buildings, with workers toiling away on Saturdays and sometimes Sundays.

In the past Brazilians with money may have been thinking solely about how to park it outside their country. Today rising incomes and one of the longest sustained periods of economic stability in the country’s history have given many Brazilians the confidence to invest at home as well.

“Someone from the interior of Brazil, who in the past would have bought a home in Paris or New York, will now buy it in Rio,” said José Conde Caldas, president of the Association of Directors of Real Estate Companies in Rio de Janeiro, who predicts strong growth at least through the 2016 Rio Olympics. In his 41 years in real estate, he added, “this is the best time of all the times.”

The hot Rio property market “has much more to do with demographics than any one-time events like the Olympics,” said Pedro Seixas de Corrêa, a professor at the Getúlio Vargas Foundation in Rio who lectures on real estate management. “This is because of the country’s rising incomes.”

Fortunes were made in the recent economic boom. São Paulo and Rio are now the 9th- and 10th-ranked cities in the world for high-net-worth individuals with at least $30 million in wealth, according to Knight Frank, a real estate company in London.

But are those times ending? Lately, sales of new residential properties have tapered off. In both Rio and São Paulo the number of new residential development units peaked in 2010. Residential sales in São Paulo fell by nearly 5 percent last year.

Construction costs are rising, in large part from a shortage of skilled labor that is causing construction delays. In Rio, costs rose by 39 percent per square foot over the past five years.

“This is a serious problem,” Mr. Caldas said, adding that developers were recruiting laborers from other Brazilian states. The end next month of a major project to upgrade Maracanã soccer stadium for the 2014 World Cup should free up some 6,000 laborers.

The political will to cut down on red tape and keep the construction boom going seems to be there, at least in Rio, Roberto Kauffmann, president of Rio’s Civil Engineering Industry Syndicate, said in a recent interview in Rome, where he spoke to Italian investors about opportunities in Rio. “We have created conditions to be able to overcome bureaucracy,” he said.

In any event the challenges haven’t dissuaded developers like Jorge Pérez, chairman of Related Group, based in Miami, who is making a sizable bet on Brazil’s need for new upscale housing over the next decade. Related established a Brazilian subsidiary a year ago and is developing its first mixed-use projects in São Paulo, with an eye to the Rio market as well.

“São Paulo had a period of overbuilding and has quieted down the past few years,” Mr. Pérez said. But “we feel that Brazil over the next decade will have a much greater growth rate than the United States, and definitely than Europe. There will be bumps on the road, like all development markets.”

Related Brasil is investing $100 million in a multitower mixed-use complex in the upscale neighborhood of Morumbi. It will have condominiums, offices, retail space and a hotel. The first phase, expected to begin construction next year, will have five towers with 672 units. The second will be even larger, he said. Mr. Pérez described the apartments as “upper-middle-class condos” in buildings with swimming pools, gardens, tennis courts and “acres of green space.”

Related’s Brazilian development partner, Bueno Netto Construction, is also investing $100 million, Mr. Pérez said. The project awaits approval by Brazilian officials, but Mr. Pérez hopes to start advance marketing on it within the next 90 days.

Related is also working on two other luxury projects in São Paulo, and is scouring Rio for opportunities in the Port Zone, which the city is revitalizing.

Among those involved with Related Brasil is Clifford Sobel, a former American ambassador, who wrote in a 2007 diplomatic cable, released by Wikileaks and reported by a Brazilian watchdog publication, that “the honeymoon is just beginning” for American investors in Brazil’s real estate market. Mr. Sobel called former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva “the best president for the real estate sector that Brazil has ever had.” Mr. Sobel wrote the enthusiastic message after a meeting with the president of Cyrela, one of the largest residential developers in the country.

In Rio, the Trump Organization is licensing the Trump name for a multi-billion-dollar office complex in the Port Zone area, which is intended to be a posh new urban center with tens of thousands of residents. The project, which Trump is working on with the Bulgarian developer MRP International, will encompass five towers with a total of 4.5 million square feet of commercial space, said Donald Trump, Jr., who is overseeing the project. “It may be the largest urban office development in all of the BRIC countries,” he said, using the acronym for Brazil, Russia, India and China.

Although the developers are still waiting on some government approvals, Mr. Trump expects at least one of the towers to be completed by the Olympics in three years.

Next door to Brazil, in Uruguay, Trump is lending its name to a luxury condo building in the resort playground of Punta del Este. The $100 million development, which will have 129 apartments on 25 floors, will overlook the beach. Sales started in January. So far potential buyers include Americans, Uruguayans, Argentines, Brazilians and Europeans, said Eric Trump, who is overseeing it.

Prices for standard units will range from $650,000 to $2.5 million. The penthouses, which will have 6,500 to 8,600 square feet of space and private pools and spas, have yet to be priced. A Trump spokeswoman would not say how many apartments were already under contract.

Other Americans making real estate investments in Latin America include Mr. Zell. Through Equity International, which he founded with Gary Garrabrant in 1999, Mr. Zell is investing in real estate—related companies around the world, in countries including Brazil and Colombia.

Equity International has an investment in a residential builder based in the southern Brazilian city of Curitiba. And in Colombia, a country beset over past decades by rebel attacks that left many foreign investors skittish, Equity International has a $75 million investment in Bogotá-based Terranum Corporate Properties, which is developing a two-million-square-foot mixed-use complex near Bogotá’s El Dorado International Airport.

Tom Heneghan, the chief executive of Equity International, said interest in Colombia was growing among global real estate investors. “The marketplace will begin to get more crowded, as we’ve seen in Brazil,” he predicted.

Taylor Barnes contributed reporting from Rio de Janeiro


12) Chicago Says It Will Close 54 Public Schools
March 21, 2013

CHICAGO — After weeks of uncertainty, principals at 54 public schools here officially learned from city officials on Thursday that their schools would close, with 11 more to share space with other schools. The closings represent the largest group of campuses to be shut down at one time by a city in recent memory.

Throughout the day, principals, teachers and parents were notified that their schools were on the closing list, their frustration and anger growing. But until late afternoon, neither the mayor’s office nor Chicago Public Schools officials would confirm the numbers.

Just before 5 p.m., the district released details. “For too long children in certain parts of Chicago have been cheated out of the resources they need to succeed because they are in underutilized, under-resourced schools,” said Barbara Byrd-Bennett, chief executive of the Chicago Public Schools, in a statement.

The district said that it would save $560 million over 10 years by reducing investment in the closed buildings and cut annual operating costs by $43 million.

The closings represent about 8 percent of the 681 public schools in Chicago, the third-largest school district in the country. More than 400,000 students are enrolled in public schools, a large majority black or Hispanic and from low-income families.

After an extensive review, the district said that it had taken 276 schools out of consideration for closing. The final decision came just two weeks after a state commission in Pennsylvania announced a decision to close 23 schools in Philadelphia. Districts in Detroit, Newark and Washington have also closed schools in recent years.

In Chicago, where about 100 schools have already been closed since 2001, Ms. Byrd-Bennett has said that the district needs to reduce a $1 billion deficit. “By consolidating these schools, we can focus on safely getting every child into a better performing school close to their home,” she said Thursday.

Union leaders and parent activists protested the decision, saying that closings can undermine neighborhoods and cause safety problems for students who may as a result have to cross gang lines.

“We’re going to have abandoned buildings,” said Karen Lewis, president of the Chicago Teachers Union, in an interview. “They destabilize the neighborhoods around them.”

“They are moving people around on spreadsheets,” Ms. Lewis added. “And children are not spreadsheets.”

Some parents worry that their children will not get the attention they need once schools are consolidated and class sizes expand.

“This is the first time in a long time this school has actually got a reasonable amount of kids in the classrooms,” said Torrence Shorter, a parent who sends four children ages 8 to 14 to Martin A. Ryerson Elementary School, which is on the closing list. Mr. Shorter is particularly concerned that his 8-year-old son, Joshua, who is in a special-education class with just 11 other students, will be forced into a much larger class.

At Joseph Stockton Elementary on the North Side of Chicago, another school on the list, Claudia Pesenti, a first-grade teacher, said she did not believe the school was “underutilized.” With 22 students in her classroom, she said, “I even think there should be a better ratio just because of the needs of 5- and 6- and 7-year-olds. We’re fortunate to have 22 in the sense that other schools have over 30, but I still think it’s really criminal.”

Rebecca Carroll, a spokeswoman for the city schools, said that schools are funded with the expectation of an average class size of 30 students. But she said that was a “budgetary, not academic decision.”

The district says that with the money it saves from closing schools, it will invest in air-conditioning for all classrooms; libraries; expanded math, science and fine arts curriculums; iPads for all students in grades 3-8 and programs for advanced students.

Some studies have shown that savings are often less than anticipated.

“Our research found that school districts tended to save under $1 million per school” closed, said Emily Dowall, a senior associate at the Pew Charitable Trusts who has studied school closings. “So in some ways that’s not a game changing amount.”

Critics say that even more significant than cost, school closings tend to affect the poor and minorities disproportionately. In the 100 schools that have closed in Chicago since 2001, 88 percent of the students affected were black. Over all, black students make up 42 percent of the city schools enrollment.

It is not clear that students displaced from shuttered schools end up attending better ones. In one study by the Consortium on Chicago School Research at the University of Chicago of 38 schools closed between 2001 and 2006, the researchers found that only 6 percent of the students who were originally enrolled in schools that closed were sent to academically strong schools.

After school let out Thursday at Robert Emmet Elementary School, one of the campuses slated for closing, students emerged clutching enrollment forms for the schools to which they will transfer. “This is a horrible school to go to,” said Heaven Briggs, 13, a seventh grader whose grandmother, Yvette Gardner, agreed that Emmet was “a bad school.”

Heaven is scheduled to attend Edward K. Ellington Elementary School next year, a school rated in “excellent standing” by the district. Emmet, by contrast, has a “low academic standing” rating.


13) States Vie to Conduct Commercial Drone Tests
March 21, 2013

LAS VEGAS — The state of Nevada recently joined the crowded bidding to be named a federal test site for the commercial use of pilotless aircraft under a program that will allow as many as six states to test the controversial but potentially lucrative technology for a five-year period.

Nevada is hoping that its vast open spaces, powerful databanks and experience with military drones will help it stand out among the 37 states bidding for approval from the Federal Aviation Administration to test the commercial uses of drones.

The amount of time and resources Nevada and the other states are dedicating to the effort shows the potential they see for getting an economic lift from a market that by some predictions may grow to $11 billion in the next decade, or nearly twice its current size.

The six sites will give the F.A.A. information on how drones can be used safely in domestic airspace, data the agency needs as it prepares to meet a 2015 deadline for issuing guidelines on the technology. The agency now grants permission to fly drones on a case-by-case basis.

For the states that are selected, the hope is that they will become more attractive to big and small companies interested in the expanding market.

Steve Hill, executive director of the Nevada Governor’s Office of Economic Development, said the application was important for Nevada, which has led the nation in unemployment, foreclosures and bankruptcies most of the time since the height of the recession. The state is suited for testing drones, he said, because it has “largest amount of restricted airspace without commercial aircraft.”

“You could basically fly from the south to the north end of the state or about 300 nautical miles,” he said.

Mr. Hill also pointed to the state’s 25 years in military research and development with drones in the deserts north of Las Vegas.

Alan Gertler, vice president at the Desert Research Institute, is part of the team preparing the state’s application. He said drones could be used to help identify sources of geothermal energy or minerals, and to monitor chemical and biological systems. “It’s a state-of-the-art research tool,” Mr. Gertler said.

The technology could also be used for weather and climate research, and to monitor natural disasters like forest fires, Mr. Hill said.

Nevada began the application process in late February, along with 49 other applicants from 37 states. The F.A.A. will decide on the six finalists by the end of the year.

However the winners wind up using the technology, the federal government will be following each site closely to gather information for developing guidelines on safely integrating unmanned aircraft into the nation’s airspace by Sept. 30, 2015. But even those guidelines are likely to be revised as the technology continues to develop, an F.A.A. official said.

The federal government is also seeking public comment until April 23 about how to safeguard the privacy of people on the ground near the test sites.

In Nevada, the public outcry has been muted, thus far. Allen Lichtenstein, general counsel for the American Civil Liberties Union of Nevada, said, “The concern isn’t the drones themselves, it’s their use, like any other tool.” He said the group was following the process closely and hoped to see “strict guidelines” on their use.

Mr. Hill said Nevada might have another advantage in the competition: Senator Harry Reid, the top Democrat in the Senate.

“Obviously it helps to have the majority leader from your state,” Mr. Hill said, noting that Mr. Reid helped set up a meeting last August between several members of the state’s application team and the F.A.A. administrator, Michael P. Huerta, when Mr. Huerta was in Las Vegas for an annual conference.

Ben Gielow, government relations manager for the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International, a nonprofit trade group, said similar meetings had taken place between officials from other states and top F.A.A. officials.

“It shows the high-level importance of this technology and the opportunity to test it,” he said.


14) Microsoft Releases Report on Law Enforcement Requests
March 21, 2013

Microsoft disclosed for the first time on Thursday the number of requests it had received from government law enforcement agencies for data on its hundreds of millions of customers around the world, joining the ranks of Google, Twitter and other Web businesses that publish so-called transparency reports.

The report, which Microsoft said it planned to update every six months, showed that law enforcement agencies in five countries — Britain, France, Germany, Turkey and the United States — accounted for 69 percent of the 70,665 requests the company received last year.

In 80 percent of requests, Microsoft provided elements of what is called noncontent data, like an account holder’s name, sex, e-mail address, I.P. address, country of residence, and dates and times of data traffic.

In 2.1 percent of requests, the company disclosed the actual content of a communication, like the subject heading of an e-mail, the contents of an e-mail or a picture stored on SkyDrive, its cloud computing service.

Microsoft said it disclosed the content of communications in 1,544 cases to law enforcement agencies in the United States, and in 14 cases to agents in Brazil, Canada, Ireland and New Zealand.

“Government requests for online data are like the dark matter of the Internet,” said Eva Galperin, a global policy analyst at the Electronic Frontier Foundation in San Francisco, which has campaigned for greater disclosure.

Ms. Galperin said that even with Microsoft’s disclosures, fewer than 10 companies published the extent of their cooperation with law enforcement agencies.

“Only a few companies report this, but they are only a very small percent of the online universe,” she said. “So any one company that joins the disclosure effort is good news. The faster this becomes a standard for all Web businesses, the better.”

The law enforcement requests concerned users of Microsoft services including Hotmail,, SkyDrive, Skype and Xbox Live, where people are typically asked to enter their personal details to obtain service.

Google was the first major Web business, in 2010, to report the number of legal requests it had received for information. Since then, Twitter, LinkedIn and some smaller companies have also begun reporting, but big businesses like Apple and Yahoo have not.

Microsoft also resisted at first. In January, a group of more than 100 Internet activists and digital rights groups signed a petition asking the company to disclose its data-handling practices for Skype, the Internet voice and video service it bought in 2011.

But Microsoft did provide two types of detail in its transparency report that rivals have not addressed in similar fashion.

It described the reasons it had rejected some requests, and it listed separately by country how it had responded to requests for the content of communications and for noncontent data.

It also published separate information for Skype, which is based in Luxembourg and is subject to national and European Union laws.

In 4,713 cases last year, Microsoft disclosed administrative details of Skype accounts — like a user’s Skype ID, name, e-mail address and billing information, as well as call detail records if a person subscribed to a Skype service that connects to a telephone number.

But Microsoft said it had released no content from Skype transmissions last year. It has said that the peer-to-peer nature of Skype’s Internet conversations means the company does not store and has no access to past conversations.

The countries that made the most requests and received information from Microsoft for Skype noncontent information last year, in descending order, were Britain, the United States, Germany, France and Taiwan, which together accounted for about 80 percent of the requests.

Microsoft did not disclose the total number of requests it had received for Skype information, but said it aimed to do so in its next report later this year.

Brad Smith, an executive vice president at Microsoft and the company’s general counsel, said that the number of requests Microsoft received last year covered only a tiny fraction of its huge customer base, which the company estimates is in the hundreds of millions.

Mr. Smith said in a blog post that the requests in 2012 had affected less than 0.02 percent of Microsoft account holders. He wrote that Microsoft, like all global businesses, must comply with requests from law enforcement, but that the company had set high standards for doing so.

Law enforcement agencies must present a subpoena or its foreign equivalent to obtain noncontent data about Microsoft users, Mr. Smith wrote. To obtain the contents of e-mails and other communications, the company requires agencies to submit a warrant, which is issued in the United States by a court judge and in Britain by the home secretary.

Microsoft rejected requests for data in 18 percent of cases last year, mostly because it could not find any information on the individuals named or because law enforcement officials had not demonstrated the proper legal justification for the requests, the company said.

It also said it had received a minuscule number of requests for data on businesses.

In 2012, Microsoft said, it received only 11 requests for information on business clients and complied in four instances, either after it had obtained consent from the business or when it already had in effect a contract permitting it to disclose the information.

“Like every company, we are obligated to comply with legally binding requests from law enforcement, and we respect and appreciate the role that law enforcement personnel play in so many countries to protect the public’s safety,” Mr. Smith wrote in his blog post. “As we continue to move forward, Microsoft is committed to respecting human rights, free expression and individual privacy.”




Subject: Jeremy Scahill's new documentary: "Dirty Wars."

Hi folks,

Jeremy Scahill has come out with a new documentary on the U.S. covert wars in Africa and the Middle East, called "Dirty Wars."  Here's an interview with him and the film's director, Richard Rowley, on "Democracy Now": 

Be warned; this can be very emotional, what we are doing around the world causes so much suffering.  I know you all know this already, but hearing more details still brings up all those intense feelings. 

Thanks to all of you for all of the work you are doing to resist these horrors.

in peace,

Mike Wong

Check out our blog:!  (Click on my name to see all my articles.)

"It is the task of the people of the whole world to put an end to the aggression and oppression perpetrated by imperialism, and chiefly by U.S. imperialism."   
People of the world, unite!


Counterinsurgency Then and Now
Monday, 7 pm, March 25, 2013
The Holdout
23l3 San Pablo Ave.
Oakland, CA
This month we are focusing on repression against women in revolutionary movements. We will be focusing specifically on Polish/German Communist Rosa Luxemburg, Assata Shakur of the Black Panthers and Black Liberation Army, Anna Mae Aquash of the American Indian Movement, and (Karen Pickett of Earth First will be with us to present on) the FBI repression and bombing of Judi Bari. As usual, we will be dissecting the repressive tactics used, as well as discussing lessons to be learned from these cases, in order to strengthen our practice in the face of ongoing efforts to neutralize our movements.


U.S. Premiere: The Mariposas of Cuba
An Exhibit of paintings by Antonio Guerrero, one of the Cuban 5 political Prisoners held in U.S. prisons

Friday March 29, 7pm

The Eric Quezada Center
for Culture and Politics

518 Valencia St.
San Francisco

SF Poet Laureate
Alejandro Murguia

Music by
Maria Loreto

The exhibit includes 25 indigenous butterflies of Cuba

The Cuban 5 came to the U.S. to monitor the activities of terrorist groups in Miami to help prevent further attacks against their homeland. Instead of receiving medals for their actions they were arrested and have served nearly 15 years in U.S. federal prisons.


 Occupy DOE 2.0: The March for Public Education

April 4, 2013—April 7, 2013

Organizer: United Opt Out National
Venue: U.S. Department of Education
Address:  400 Maryland Ave, SW, , Washington, DC, DC, 20202, United States

Three Spiritual Visionaries Discuss “The Dream Never Dies”
45 Years After the Assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
A Conversation exploring the “Beloved Community”
with Alice Walker, Jack Kornfield and Michael Bernard Beckwith
Thursday, April 4, 2013, 7:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m. at Zellerbach Auditorium, University of California, Berkeley Campus.

Oakland, C.A.  - Join the East Bay Meditation Center (EBMC) for “The Dream Never Dies,” a benefit evening of music and conversation exploring the possibilities and practicalities of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s "Beloved Community" in the 21st century. The event features Alice Walker, Jack Kornfield, and Michael Bernard Beckwith with musical performances by Rickie Byars Beckwith & Raz Kennedy ~ moderated by Konda Mason.  Thursday, April 4, 2013, 7:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m. at Zellerbach Auditorium, University of California, Berkeley Campus.  Tickets are Sliding Scale and range from $30 - $100 ($20 for students w/ ID) at More information at


Thirty representatives from many groups involved in anti-drone actions, met in New York on December 15, 2012 and established a coordinating body to be known as the Network to Stop Drone Surveillance and Warfare (NSDSW).

The group endorsed this draft statement of purpose:
“Horrified by the facts of the era of drone warfare and surveillance technology, we declare our commitment to establishing an ongoing network of groups and organizations. The Network to Stop Drone Surveillance and Warfare seeks to initiate and coordinate events and actions that will raise a united and spirited voice for justice and peace, and to stop weaponized drones and related technology applications. These activities are aimed at highlighting the illegality, immorality, and unconstitutional nature of using drones to spy on and/or kill human beings.”

Anti-drone website:    For more information and resources, and to join the Network, contact Nick Mottern -
The group supported the following actions:

April Days of Action – In response to call for anti-drone action focused on drone manufacturing on April 4-7 by San Diego group, coordinated days of action were proposed. Groups are encouraged to select one or more of the days to organize drone-related activities.  National coordinators are listed below.

April 4-7 – Drone Manufacturing. Actions around the country directed at drone manufacturing facilities in region and calling for an end to manufacturing weaponized and surveillance drones. Coordinator: Joe Scarry –

April 16-18 – Drone Research/Training.  Actions/teach-ins, etc. at colleges & universities that do drone research or pilot training. Demand an end to research and training related to drone warfare. Coordinator: Marge Van Cleef –

    April 27-28 – Drone Bases.  Organize protests at bases in region.  Hancock Reaper drone base protest organizers calling for large demonstrations there.  Coordinator: Dave Soumis –

C. Drone Warfare War Crimes Tribunal – Explore holding tribunal in September, possibly with victims testifying.

D. Forums/workshops on impact of US intervention/drone attacks in other countries. Organize tours of U.S.-based speakers or people from countries under attack who can analyze and report on internal politics and social movements in countries like Pakistan & Afghanistan and other countries under attack.


Rally for Bradley Manning. 

Join us at Fort Meade on June 1, 2013.

By the Bradley Manning Support Network, February 25, 2013.

• 1pm Gather (Reece Road and US 175, Fort Meade, Maryland)
• 2pm March
• 3pm Rally and Speak Out

Sponsored by the Bradley Manning Support Network and the national Veterans for Peace organization, with the help of Courage to Resist, and many other groups.

After more than three years of imprisonment, including nine months of torture, Nobel Peace
Prize nominee Bradley Manning’s trial is finally scheduled to begin June 3, 2013, at Fort Meade,
Maryland. The outcome of this trial will determine whether a conscience-driven 25-year-
old WikiLeaks whistle-blower spends the rest of his life in prison. Bradley believed that the
American people have a right to know the truth about what our government does around the
world in our name. We the People must send a message to the military prosecuting authority,
and President Obama, that Bradley Manning is a patriot and heroic truth-teller.

June 1st is the International Day of Action to Support Bradley Manning. Join us at Fort Meade on
the eve of Bradley’s court martial. Solidarity actions are welcome at bases, recruiting centers and US
embassies worldwide. We ask that Veterans for Peace join us in cosponsoring these historic events.

Monday, June 3, 2013
8:30 am, enter Fort Meade at Reece Road and US 175, Fort Meade, Maryland
9:00 am scheduled daily start of hearings at Magistrate Court
4432 Llewellyn Avenue, Fort Meade, MD. It is 2 miles from the Main Gate.
The court martial is expected to last 6-12 weeks. Supporters are encouraged to attend as many days of
this trial as they are able.

Parking for Saturday, June 1, 2013. We hope to come to an understanding with local
authorities regarding the best place for supporters to park for the Saturday rally. Parking is
available about one mile south near Blue Water Blvd (Weis Market) and US 175. We’ll try to
help shuttle folks as needed.

Portable toilets are expected to be available.

Join us in the courtroom for the trial beginning June 3, 2013. Drive (or taxi) to the Fort Meade Visitor
Control Center at the Fort Meade Main Gate (all the other gates are for military ID holders only), Reece Road and US 175, Fort Meade, Maryland. We suggest arriving when the visitor center opens at 7:30am, and certainly before 8:15am. The proceedings are scheduled to begin at 9am daily. The multiple layers of security take time to navigate, and procedures often change from day to day. Each person will need a valid state or federal photo ID such as a driver’s license, state photo ID card, or passport. Foreign passports are accepted. Anyone driving on to Fort Meade will be required to submit their driver’s license, vehicle registration, and printed (not digital) proof of insurance. Your vehicle will be subject to search, and you may be required to cover over political bumper stickers on your vehicle. Consider walking on base if there are any questions at all regarding your vehicle and paperwork.

The proceedings will be held at the Magistrate Court, 4432 Llewellyn Ave, Fort Meade, MD
20755 (this is one mile from the Visitor Center). Electronic devices, including cell phones,
computers, cameras, are not allowed in the courtroom, and should be left in your vehicle.

There are no pre-registration requirements for the public to attend the proceedings. However,
those wishing to attend as credentialed media should contact the US Army Military District of
Washington Public Affairs Office at 202-685-4645.


The Fort Meade Main Gate is less than 10 miles south of the Baltimore-Washington DC
International (BWI) airport. It is located between Washington DC and Baltimore MD.

From Washington, DC, take MD-295 N towards BALTIMORE to US 175 EAST, then follow
175 EAST until you come to Reece Road. From Baltimore, MD, take MD-295 S towards
WASHINGTON to US 175 EAST, then take 175 EAST until you come to Reece Road.

We hope to charter buses for supporters from both downtown Washington DC and Baltimore,

There is regional bus service from BWI Airport to the Arundel Mills Shopping Center (Bus 017).
Then take the CTC K to the Main Gate. For a Google Maps public transit view of this option:

Note that the nearby Odenton MARC train station serves commuter trains only and does not
run on the weekend. Amtrak does not stop at this station.


There are many hotels serving this area just south of the BWI Airport. The closest of these are
5-6 miles from the Ft. Meade Main Gate. One option is Aloft Arundel Mills, 7520 Teague Rd,
Hanover, MD, 21076 (866-539-0036), $80-$100 night. A search of the area turns up
rooms nearby starting at $60 a night. The only lodging really close to the Ft. Meade Main Gate
is the White Gables Motel; however, for a number of reasons, we strongly suggest avoiding it.



Wealth Inequality in America 

[This is a must see to believe] 


Read the transcription of hero Bradley Manning's 35-page statement explaining why he leaked "state secrets" to WikiLeaks.
March 1, 2013

 The statement was read by Pfc. Bradley Manning at a providence inquiry for his formal plea of guilty to one specification as charged and nine specifications for lesser included offenses. He pled not guilty to 12 other specifications. This rush transcript was taken by journalist Alexa O’Brien at Thursday’s pretrial hearing and first appeared on


Please forward widely

Lynne Stewart Emergency Alert!

Dear Friends,

Below you will find today's critical communication from longtime Lynne Stewart supporter, Betty Davis. The information concerns Lynne's health and her legal status.

As you will read below Lynne's breast cancer has returned. Lynne was successfully treated, we had hoped, two years ago and given a clean bill of health, as much as such diagnoses can be counted on. But a single spot was found on one lung a few months ago. Now another has appeared on the other lung and others in her upper back, all associated with her original breast cancer.

Her husband Ralph Poynter told me today that Lynne's condition was still very treatable and that a cure was not at all to be ruled out and especially so if prison officials allowed her the expert treatment afforded her previously in a prominent New York City hospital. Lynne's request to be moved to that facility was denied. She is to be treated in a prison related facility, but fortunately under the direction of and using the protocols of her doctor/daughter, who is expected to be with Lynne at any moment.

We are still hopeful for a positive outcome, even under the most difficult conditions.

Meanwhile, Lynne's appeal preparations for a hearing before the U.S. Supreme Court are now in progress, with Lynne having assembled a first rate team of attorneys including members of the Center for Constitutional Rights and the National Lawyers Guild.

Lynne campaigned for Mumia's freedom for the several years that she was free on bail and traveling the country in her own defense. She was present at Mumia's court hearing in Philadelphia and appeared on Democracy Now!, with Mumia phoning in in her defense.

I urge you to carefully read the material below and lend a hand. The stakes are high. We will continue to demand the finest medical treatment for Lynne and, of course, continue to campaign for her freedom and immediate release.

Lynne, a prominent civil rights attorney of 30 years, was the victim of a government-orchestrated 2005 frame-up trial that was riddled with violations of fundamental legal principles. She was convicted on five counts of conspiracy to aid and abet terrorism. This was based on the government's charge that her public issuance a press release on behalf of her client, the "blind sheik" Omar Abdel Rachman, an Egyptian cleric who was similarly framed up and imprisoned for life on "terrorism" charges, was illegal.

Ironically, Rachman's freedom is today being demanded by Egypt's new President Mohamed Morsi.

Lynne, 72, was originally convicted and sentenced to 28 months in prison, but this "light" sentence was contested by the reactionary U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit and her sentence was outrageously increased to 10 years, by the compliant Federal District Court trial judge, John Koeltl.

I urge you to write to Lynne and convey your love and solidarity. She toured the Bay Area several times in previous years, always speaking to admiring and stunned audiences, who realized that Lynne's case was central to everyone's civil liberties. Lynne's conviction was a message to all attorneys that defense of the unpopular, defense of democratic rights and especially defense of Muslim victims of government persecution, was dangerous. Lynne's conviction and extended sentence served to massively chill the defense bar.

Lynne's freedom and life itself in large part depends on our solidarity.

Write Lynne at:

Lynne Stewart 53504-054
Federal Medical Center Carswell
P.O. Box 27137
Fort Worth, Texas 76127

Send your generous contribution payable to:

Lynne Stewart Organization
1070 Dean Street
Brooklyn, New York 11216

In solidarity,

Jeff Mackler, West Coast Coordinator
Lynne Stewart Defense Committee



It  is urgent  that you  listen  to  the audio email below.  It is  the latest update  from  Ralph Poynter,  Mya Shone  &  Ralph Schonmann about LYNNE STEWARTS fate in prison.

Lynne Stewart's breast cancer is spreading to her lungs and shoulders.  She needs immediate treatment NOW.  The prison authorities have known
this since September.


All we are asking you to:
Listen to the audio below and update yourself on the facts. Check out the website as well.
   You don't have to write the prison authorities because THEY READ EVERYTHING WE SEND AND TELL HER SO.

Send this email out to all your listservs, especially to LAWYERS because we are asking ALL ATTORNEYS SUPPORT HER CERT , (A REQUEST FOR THE SUPREME COURT TO HEAR HER CASE.)

 When it comes to the oppressed, there is no such thing as law or justice.  THEREFORE, the movement determines the argument before the courts, not this myth of justice before the law. We need attorneys who understand this and understand that LYNNE STEWART was one of  the very few attorneys who understood this. She never had her political prisoners surrender their right to self defense or self determination.  In her trial when questioned she still defended this human right and her right to give her clients the best defense possible.  When she was resentenced from 28 months to ten years, one of the reasons was that  SHE "SHOWED NO REMORSE." SHE DOES NOT FEEL REMORSE FOR DEFENDING THE BILL OF RIGHTS, therefore, we should defend her and all POLITICAL PRISONERS.

Write a letter  of support to    Lynne Stewart-   53504 - 054,     FEDERAL MEDICAL CNTR, CARSWELL,  P.O. BOX 27137,  FT. WORTH, TEXAS 76127.

-----Original Message---

    But, to listen to the report, go to:

128 kbps version (hi fi):

32 kbps version (lo fi):

    Please listen from the links here in this email.      Let me know what you think.




Statement of Support for Brooklyn College Students for Justice in Palestine:
We Condemn Attacks Against Advocates for BDS and Palestinian Rights!

We the undersigned deplore the efforts of politicians and others to bully student activists and faculty and to smear supporters of boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) against Israel as anti-Semites.

In recent days, opponents of an event on BDS to be held on campus February 7th have attacked the organizers and scheduled speakers, internationally renowned philosopher Judith Butler and Palestinian human rights activist Omar Barghouti, as well as the political science department and university administration for co-sponsoring the event. This is just the latest in a series of incidents involving attempts to silence criticism of Israel at Brooklyn College.

Opponents of the February 7 event have made deeply offensive and inflammatory accusations against supporters of BDS, with State Assemblyman Alan Maisel going so far as to warn of “the potential for a second Holocaust here.” Other prominent critics include lawyer Alan Dershowitz, who has openly called for the United States and Israel to use torture, and State Assemblyman Dov Hikind, a follower of the late Meir Kahane, an Israeli-American rabbi whose racist Kach movement has been outlawed by the US and Israel as a terrorist organization for advocating the expulsion of Palestinians from Israel and the occupied territories and for carrying out violent terrorist attacks against Palestinians and others.

It is outrageous and perverse to conflate BDS proponents and our stance in support of equal rights and freedom for Palestinians with anti-Semitism and Nazism. Contrary to the claims of these detractors, the BDS movement is an inclusive, nonviolent, civil society-led campaign whose goal is to pressure Israel into respecting Palestinian human rights and abiding by international law, in the absence of action on the part of the US government and international community to do so. It is comprised of people of all faiths and backgrounds, including many Israeli and American Jews. Leaders of the BDS movement have always rejected and condemned any and all forms of racism and bigotry, including anti-Semitism. As SJP-BC’s mission statement says, we “reject any form of hatred or discrimination against any religious or ethnic group.”

As supporters of Palestinian rights and of academic freedom and free speech on campus, we commend Brooklyn College President Karen Gould for showing leadership and not succumbing to pressure from bullies like Dershowitz and Hikind, who seek to suppress criticism of Israel by smearing advocates of Palestinian freedom and equality as bigots.

For nearly 65 years, Palestinians have been dispossessed, colonized, and denied the most basic of human rights and freedoms by Israel. For more than 45 years, they have endured a brutal and illegal Israeli military occupation that becomes more entrenched each day. More than 11 million Palestinian refugees, the survivors and descendants of the approximately 750,000 Palestinians who were ethnically-cleansed during Israel’s creation in 1948, are prevented from exercising their internationally-recognized right of return to the land and homes they were expelled from simply because they are not Jewish, while those Palestinians who remained inside Israel after 1948, who make up about 20% of the population today, face widespread institutionalized discrimination and are treated as second- or third-class citizens. As the international community looks on and does nothing to hold Israel accountable for its actions, global civil society is taking the lead with BDS.

In light of the attacks, we pledge our continued support to SJP’s efforts to educate the public about Israel’s grave and systematic abuses of Palestinian human rights and the racist, apartheid regime Israel has instituted in the territories it controls between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea.

For more information, visit SJP Brooklyn College's website at or email us at


Emergency Appeal—Hunger strike in second month—solidarity funds needed for fired Colombian GM workers

Many of you have heard and met Jorge Parra, president of the Association of Injured Workers and Ex-workers of GM Colomotores (Asotrecol). Asotrecol represents the workers who were fired after sustaining work-related injuries and illnesses at GM’s plant in Bogota, Colombia. They are still fighting for the right to return to jobs at GM that they can do, or receive compensation. The occupation outside the U.S. embassy in Bogota has been maintained for over 500 days. Jorge, who is here in Detroit, is in the second month of his third hunger strike to pressure GM to negotiate with Asotrecol. Thus far GM has not met with him. The situation is urgent.

When Jorge and his coworkers were fired it left them with no source of income; their injuries prevent them from getting other jobs. For this struggle to continue funds are critically needed—for Jorge’s living expenses here and for the families of the workers who are living in tents outside the embassy. Their children, one of whom has a life threatening case of cerebral palsy, are in urgent need of medical care.

We cannot let these courageous autoworkers or their families down.

To make a donation, please send a check to ”Wellspring UCC” with “Colombia relief” on the memo line. Their mailing address is: Wellspring UCC, Box 508, Centreville VA 20122. To make a donation online through paypal visit: (be sure to write “Colombia relief” on the message subject line).


Petition to US White House and State Department: Condemn Israeli Aggression in Gaza

Please spread the word far and wide about this petition.

Please invite all of your facebook friends to the "event" to sign the petition.

If you are on twitter, sign the petition there as well and pass it around.

In solidarity and peace,

African Americans for Justice in the Middle East and North Africa
Statement Regarding the Aggression Against Gaza

African Americans for Justice in the Middle East and North Africa (AAJMENA) strongly condemns Israeli aggression against the Palestinian people in Gaza. The arguments offered by the Israeli government for its attack on Gaza are nakedly cynical in both form and content. That a truce had been negotiated, with the assistance of the Egyptian government, between Israel and Hamas only to be broken by the Israeli assassination of Hamas military commander Ahmad Jabari clearly indicates that the Netanyahu government is not interested in peace. Israel is responsible for the escalating violence and for this epic breach of human rights.

This crisis underscores a stunning power imbalance. Nuclear-armed Israel, by far the most powerful military force in the Middle East (and among the mightiest in the world), has unleashed its immense war making capacity on Gaza’s captive population, mobilizing warships and tanks and launching more than 1,000 F-16 airstrikes since the attack began. The use of such weapons on civilians is a flagrant violation of the U.S. Arms Export Control Act.

The aggression against Gaza must be understood as the latest act in the decades-long oppression of the Palestinian people at the hands of the Israeli government. Blockaded Gaza has been plunged into misery by the Israeli-U.S. effort to thwart the democratic will of the Palestinian people as demonstrated in their 2006 legislative elections. When a coup was attempted against Hamas—and failed—the Israelis sealed Gaza, spinning events to make it appear that those not interested in peace were the Palestinians. As a result, Gaza is the largest open-air prison in the world, with 1.5 million people locked into a roughly 140-square-mile strip of land. This latest humanitarian crisis has caused the disproportionate death and suffering of Palestinians, but casualties on both sides will be the consequence of Israeli aggression.

Rather than taking a stand against Israeli’s onslaught and issuing an unambiguous demand for an end to the bloodshed, the Obama administration has condemned alleged Palestinian terrorism, repeating the dishonest line that this violent attack is merely in defense of Israel (a position reinforced by the one-sided coverage of the corporate news media). This represents a massive failure on the administration’s part. For all Obama’s denunciation of the Assad regime in Syria, it appears that his administration regards the outright slaughter of civilians in Palestine as acceptable. It is crucial that we recognize the extent of U.S. complicity in the bloodshed; our tax dollars ($8.5 million a day) enable Israeli militarism at a time when those funds are desperately needed to fill gaps in services and infrastructure back home.

As African Americans and people of African descent in the U.S. from academia, activism and various social movements, we cannot remain silent. We call upon all people of good will to:

1. Endorse this statement.

2. Communicate with the White House and the U.S. Department of State to request that President Obama demand that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin
Netanyahu and the IDF cease the bombardment of Gaza and withdraw their armed forces immediately. Insist that the U.S. condition aid to Israel on compliance with U.S. and international law.

3. Contact the Israeli embassy in Washington, D.C. and demand that Israel withdraw its forces and end the blockade.

4. Send your local media outlet a “letter to the editor” expressing outrage against the provocative and murderous acts of the Israeli government.

5. Join protests against Israeli aggression.

6. Support Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions ( and U.S. Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (, and back the efforts of labor unions and student groups to compel their employers and administrators to divest from companies that do business in Israel.


An Appeal from Conscientious Objectors in Israel - Resistance to serving in the I.D.F. is growing among Israeli youth.

International Support is important in strengthening and broadening this spirit of defiance:

Conscientious objector Natan Blanc sentenced to prison for the first time for his refusal to join the Israeli Army.

CO Natan Blanc, 19 years old from, Haifa, arrived, Sunday, 19 November, to the Induction Base in Tal-hashomer, where he declared his refusal to serve in the Israeli Army. he was sentenced to 10 days of imprisonment for his refusal, he also received a suspended sentence of 10 days.
In his refusal declaration Blanc wrote:
"I began thinking about refusing to conscripted into the Israeli Army during the “Cast Lead” operation in 2008. The wave of aggressive militarism that swept the country then, the expressions of mutual hatred, and the vacuous talk about stamping out terror and creating a deterrent effect were the primary trigger for my refusal. Today, after four years full of terror, without a political process [towards peace negotiations], and without quiet in Gaza and Sderot, it is clear that the Netanyahu Government, like that of his predecessor Olmert, is not interested in finding a solution to the existing situation, but rather in preserving it.  From their point of view, there is nothing wrong with our initiating a “Cast Lead 2″ operation every three or four years (and then 3, 4,5 and 6): we will talk of deterrence, we will kill some terrorist, we will lose some civilians on both sides, and we will prepare the ground for a new generation full of hatred on both sides. As representatives of the people, members of the cabinet have no duty to present their vision for the futures of the country, and they can continue with this bloody cycle, with no end in sight.  But we, as citizens and human beings, have a moral duty to refuse to participate in this cynical game."

You can read the full declaration here.

His prison address is:
Natan Blanc
Military ID 7571369
Military Prison No. 6
Military Postal Code 01860, IDF
Fax: ++972-4-9540580
Since the prison authorities often block mail from reaching imprisoned objectors, we also recommend you to send them your letters of support and encouragement via e-mail to: (hitting “reply all” to this message will send the message to the same address), and they will be printed out and delivered during visits.

Recommended Action
First of all, please circulate this message and the information contained in it as widely as possible, not only through e-mail, but also on websites, social networks, conventional media, by word of mouth, etc.
Other recommendations for action:

1. Sending Letters of Support
Please send Natan letters of support to the prison address above and via e-mail to: and

2. Letters to Authorities
It is recommended to send letters of protest on the objectors’ behalf, preferably by fax, to:
Mr. Ehud Barak,
Minister of Defence,
Ministry of Defence,
Tel-Aviv 61909,
E-mail: or
Tel.: ++972-3-6975220
Fax: ++972-3-6962757
Copies of your letters can also be sent to the commander of the military prison at:
Commander of Military Prison No. 6,
Military Prison No. 6
Military Postal Code 01860, IDF
Fax: ++972-4-9540580
Another useful address for sending copies would be the Military Attorney General:
Denny Efroni,
Chief Military Attorney
Military postal code 9605, IDF
Fax: ++972-3-569-45-26
It would be especially useful to send your appeals to the Commander of the Induction Base in Tel-HaShomer. It is this officer that ultimately decides whether an objector is to be exempted from military service or sent to another round in prison, and it is the same officer who is ultimately in charge of the military Conscience Committee:
Gil Ben Shaul,
Commander of Induction Base,
Meitav, Tel-HaShomer
Military Postal Code 02718, IDF
Fax: ++972-3-737-60-52
For those of you who live outside Israel, it would be very effective to send protests to your local Israeli embassy. You can find the address of your local embassy on the web.
Here is a generic sample letter, which you can use in sending appeals to authorities on the prisoners’ behalf. Feel free to modify this letter or write your own:
Dear Sir/Madam,
It has come to my attention that Natan Blanc (military ID 7571369), a conscientious objector to military service, has been imprisoned for the second time for his refusal to become part of the Israeli army, and is held in Military Prison no. 6 near Atlit.
The imprisonment of conscientious objectors such as Blanc is a violation of international law, of basic human rights and of plain morals.
I therefore call for the immediate and unconditional release from prison of Natan Blanc, without threat of further imprisonment in the future, and urge you and the system you are heading to respect the dignity and person of conscientious objectors, indeed of all persons, in the future.
3. Letters to media in Israel and in other countries
Writing op-ed pieces and letters to editors of media in Israel and other countries could also be quite useful in indirectly but powerfully pressuring the military authorities to let go of the objectors and in bringing their plight and their cause to public attention.
Here are some contact details for the main media outlets in Israel:


Contact the Obama campaign now to voice your support for Bradley!

The Obama campaign keeps track of how many calls and e-mails they get about each issue.

Contact President Obama's team now and tell them "Obama must uphold his promise to protect whistle-blowers and free Bradley Manning!"
Call: 312-698-3670



You Have the Right to Remain Silent: NLG Guide to Law Enforcement Encounters

Posted 1 day ago on July 27, 2012, 10:28 p.m. EST by OccupyWallSt
Occupy Wall Street is a nonviolent movement for social and economic justice, but in recent days disturbing reports have emerged of Occupy-affiliated activists being targeted by US law enforcement, including agents from the FBI and Department of Homeland Security. To help ensure Occupiers and allied activists know their rights when encountering law enforcement, we are publishing in full the National Lawyers Guild's booklet: You Have the Right to Remain Silent. The NLG provides invaluable support to the Occupy movement and other activists – please click here to support the NLG.
We strongly encourage all Occupiers to read and share the information provided below. We also recommend you enter the NLG's national hotline number (888-654-3265) into your cellphone (if you have one) and keep a copy handy. This information is not a substitute for legal advice. You should contact the NLG or a criminal defense attorney immediately if you have been visited by the FBI or other law enforcement officials. You should also alert your relatives, friends, co-workers and others so that they will be prepared if they are contacted as well.

You Have the Right to Remain Silent: A Know Your Rights Guide for Law Enforcement Encounters

What Rights Do I Have?

Whether or not you’re a citizen, you have rights under the United States Constitution. The Fifth Amendment gives every person the right to remain silent: not to answer questions asked by a police officer or government agent. The Fourth Amendment restricts the government’s power to enter and search your home or workplace, although there are many exceptions and new laws have expanded the government’s power to conduct surveillance. The First Amendment protects your right to speak freely and to advocate for social change. However, if you are a non-citizen, the Department of Homeland Security may target you based on your political activities.

Standing Up For Free Speech

The government’s crusade against politically-active individuals is intended to disrupt and suppress the exercise of time-honored free speech activities, such as boycotts, protests, grassroots organizing and solidarity work. Remember that you have the right to stand up to the intimidation tactics of FBI agents and other law enforcement officials who, with political motives, are targeting organizing and free speech activities. Informed resistance to these tactics and steadfast defense of your and others’ rights can bring positive results. Each person who takes a courageous stand makes future resistance to government oppression easier for all. The National Lawyers Guild has a long tradition of standing up to government repression. The organization itself was labeled a “subversive” group during the McCarthy Era and was subject to FBI surveillance and infiltration for many years. Guild attorneys have defended FBI-targeted members of the Black Panther Party, the American Indian Movement, and the Puerto Rican independence movement. The NLG exposed FBI surveillance, infiltration and disruption tactics that were detailed during the 1975-76 COINTELPRO hearings. In 1989 the NLG prevailed in a lawsuit on behalf of several activist organizations, including the Guild, that forced the FBI to expose the extent to which it had been spying on activist movements. Under the settlement, the FBI turned over roughly 400,000 pages of its files on the Guild, which are now available at the Tamiment Library at New York University.

What if FBI Agents or Police Contact Me?

What if an agent or police officer comes to the door?

Do not invite the agents or police into your home. Do not answer any questions. Tell the agent that you do not wish to talk with him or her. You can state that your lawyer will contact them on your behalf. You can do this by stepping outside and pulling the door behind you so that the interior of your home or office is not visible, getting their contact information or business cards and then returning inside. They should cease questioning after this. If the agent or officer gives a reason for contacting you, take notes and give the information to your attorney. Anything you say, no matter how seemingly harmless or insignificant, may be used against you or others in the future. Lying to or misleading a federal agent is a crime. The more you speak, the more opportunity for federal law enforcement to find something you said (even if not intentionally) false and assert that you lied to a federal officer.

Do I have to answer questions?

You have the constitutional right to remain silent. It is not a crime to refuse to answer questions. You do not have to talk to anyone, even if you have been arrested or are in jail. You should affirmatively and unambiguously state that you wish to remain silent and that you wish to consult an attorney. Once you make the request to speak to a lawyer, do not say anything else. The Supreme Court recently ruled that answering law enforcement questions may be taken as a waiver of your right to remain silent, so it is important that you assert your rights and maintain them. Only a judge can order you to answer questions. There is one exception: some states have “stop and identify” statutes which require you to provide identity information or your name if you have been detained on reasonable suspicion that you may have committed a crime. A lawyer in your state can advise you of the status of these requirements where you reside.

Do I have to give my name?

As above, in some states you can be detained or arrested for merely refusing to give your name. And in any state, police do not always follow the law, and refusing to give your name may make them suspicious or more hostile and lead to your arrest, even without just cause, so use your judgment. Giving a false name could in some circumstances be a crime.
Do I need a lawyer?

You have the right to talk to a lawyer before you decide whether to answer questions from law enforcement. It is a good idea to talk to a lawyer if you are considering answering any questions. You have the right to have a lawyer present during any interview. The lawyer’s job is to protect your rights. Once you tell the agent that you want to talk to a lawyer, he or she should stop trying to question you and should make any further contact through your lawyer. If you do not have a lawyer, you can still tell the officer you want to speak to one before answering questions. Remember to get the name, agency and telephone number of any investigator who visits you, and give that information to your lawyer. The government does not have to provide you with a free lawyer unless you are charged with a crime, but the NLG or another organization may be able to help you find a lawyer for free or at a reduced rate.
If I refuse to answer questions or say I want a lawyer, won’t it seem like I have something to hide?

Anything you say to law enforcement can be used against you and others. You can never tell how a seemingly harmless bit of information might be used or manipulated to hurt you or someone else. That is why the right not to talk is a fundamental right under the Constitution. Keep in mind that although law enforcement agents are allowed to lie to you, lying to a government agent is a crime. Remaining silent is not. The safest things to say are “I am going to remain silent,” “I want to speak to my lawyer,” and “I do not consent to a search.” It is a common practice for law enforcement agents to try to get you to waive your rights by telling you that if you have nothing to hide you would talk or that talking would “just clear things up.” The fact is, if they are questioning you, they are looking to incriminate you or someone you may know, or they are engaged in political intelligence gathering. You should feel comfortable standing firm in protection and defense of your rights and refusing to answer questions.

Can agents search my home or office?

You do not have to let police or agents into your home or office unless they have and produce a valid search warrant. A search warrant is a written court order that allows the police to conduct a specified search. Interfering with a warrantless search probably will not stop it and you might get arrested. But you should say “I do not consent to a search,” and call a criminal defense lawyer or the NLG. You should be aware that a roommate or guest can legally consent to a search of your house if the police believe that person has the authority to give consent, and your employer can consent to a search of your workspace without your permission.

What if agents have a search warrant?

If you are present when agents come for the search, you can ask to see the warrant. The warrant must specify in detail the places to be searched and the people or things to be taken away. Tell the agents you do not consent to the search so that they cannot go beyond what the warrant authorizes. Ask if you are allowed to watch the search; if you are allowed to, you should. Take notes, including names, badge numbers, what agency each officer is from, where they searched and what they took. If others are present, have them act as witnesses to watch carefully what is happening. If the agents ask you to give them documents, your computer, or anything else, look to see if the item is listed in the warrant. If it is not, do not consent to them taking it without talking to a lawyer. You do not have to answer questions. Talk to a lawyer first. (Note: If agents present an arrest warrant, they may only perform a cursory visual search of the premises to see if the person named in the arrest warrant is present.)

Do I have to answer questions if I have been arrested?

No. If you are arrested, you do not have to answer any questions. You should affirmatively and unambiguously state that you wish to assert your right to remain silent. Ask for a lawyer right away. Do not say anything else. Repeat to every officer who tries to talk to or question you that you wish to remain silent and that you wish to speak to a lawyer. You should always talk to a lawyer before you decide to answer any questions.

What if I speak to government agents anyway?

Even if you have already answered some questions, you can refuse to answer other questions until you have a lawyer. If you find yourself talking, stop. Assert that you wish to remain silent and that you wish to speak to a lawyer.
What if the police stop me on the street?

Ask if you are free to go. If the answer is yes, consider just walking away. If the police say you are not under arrest, but are not free to go, then you are being detained. The police can pat down the outside of your clothing if they have reason to suspect you might be armed and dangerous. If they search any more than this, say clearly, “I do not consent to a search.” They may keep searching anyway. If this happens, do not resist because you can be charged with assault or resisting arrest. You do not have to answer any questions. You do not have to open bags or any closed container. Tell the officers you do not consent to a search of your bags or other property.

What if police or agents stop me in my car?

Keep your hands where the police can see them. If you are driving a vehicle, you must show your license, registration and, in some states, proof of insurance. You do not have to consent to a search. But the police may have legal grounds to search your car anyway. Clearly state that you do not consent. Officers may separate passengers and drivers from each other to question them, but no one has to answer any questions.

What if I am treated badly by the police or the FBI?

Write down the officer’s badge number, name or other identifying information. You have a right to ask the officer for this information. Try to find witnesses and their names and phone numbers. If you are injured, seek medical attention and take pictures of the injuries as soon as you can. Call a lawyer as soon as possible.

What if the police or FBI threaten me with a grand jury subpoena if I don’t answer their questions?

A grand jury subpoena is a written order for you to go to court and testify about information you may have. It is common for the FBI to threaten you with a subpoena to get you to talk to them. If they are going to subpoena you, they will do so anyway. You should not volunteer to speak just because you are threatened with a subpoena. You should consult a lawyer.
What if I receive a grand jury subpoena?

Grand jury proceedings are not the same as testifying at an open court trial. You are not allowed to have a lawyer present (although one may wait in the hallway and you may ask to consult with him or her after each question) and you may be asked to answer questions about your activities and associations. Because of the witness’s limited rights in this situation, the government has frequently used grand jury subpoenas to gather information about activists and political organizations. It is common for the FBI to threaten activists with a subpoena in order to elicit information about their political views and activities and those of their associates. There are legal grounds for stopping (“quashing”) subpoenas, and receiving one does not necessarily mean that you are suspected of a crime. If you do receive a subpoena, call the NLG National Hotline at 888-NLG-ECOL (888-654-3265) or call a criminal defense attorney immediately.

The government regularly uses grand jury subpoena power to investigate and seek evidence related to politically-active individuals and social movements. This practice is aimed at prosecuting activists and, through intimidation and disruption, discouraging continued activism.

Federal grand jury subpoenas are served in person. If you receive one, it is critically important that you retain the services of an attorney, preferably one who understands your goals and, if applicable, understands the nature of your political work, and has experience with these issues. Most lawyers are trained to provide the best legal defense for their client, often at the expense of others. Beware lawyers who summarily advise you to cooperate with grand juries, testify against friends, or cut off contact with your friends and political activists. Cooperation usually leads to others being subpoenaed and investigated. You also run the risk of being charged with perjury, a felony, should you omit any pertinent information or should there be inconsistencies in your testimony.

Frequently prosecutors will offer “use immunity,” meaning that the prosecutor is prohibited from using your testimony or any leads from it to bring charges against you. If a subsequent prosecution is brought, the prosecutor bears the burden of proving that all of its evidence was obtained independent of the immunized testimony. You should be aware, however, that they will use anything you say to manipulate associates into sharing more information about you by suggesting that you have betrayed confidences.

In front of a grand jury you can “take the Fifth” (exercise your right to remain silent). However, the prosecutor may impose immunity on you, which strips you of Fifth Amendment protection and subjects you to the possibility of being cited for contempt and jailed if you refuse to answer further. In front of a grand jury you have no Sixth Amendment right to counsel, although you can consult with a lawyer outside the grand jury room after each question.

What if I don’t cooperate with the grand jury?

If you receive a grand jury subpoena and elect to not cooperate, you may be held in civil contempt. There is a chance that you may be jailed or imprisoned for the length of the grand jury in an effort to coerce you to cooperate. Regular grand juries sit for a basic term of 18 months, which can be extended up to a total of 24 months. It is lawful to hold you in order to coerce your cooperation, but unlawful to hold you as a means of punishment. In rare instances you may face criminal contempt charges.

What If I Am Not a Citizen and the DHS Contacts Me?

The Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) is now part of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and has been renamed and reorganized into: 1. The Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services (BCIS); 2. The Bureau of Customs and Border Protection (CBP); and 3. The Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). All three bureaus will be referred to as DHS for the purposes of this pamphlet.

■ Assert your rights. If you do not demand your rights or if you sign papers waiving your rights, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) may deport you before you see a lawyer or an immigration judge. Never sign anything without reading, understanding and knowing the consequences of signing it.

■ Talk to a lawyer. If possible, carry with you the name and telephone number of an immigration lawyer who will take your calls. The immigration laws are hard to understand and there have been many recent changes. DHS will not explain your options to you. As soon as you encounter a DHS agent, call your attorney. If you can’t do it right away, keep trying. Always talk to an immigration lawyer before leaving the U.S. Even some legal permanent residents can be barred from returning.

Based on today’s laws, regulations and DHS guidelines, non-citizens usually have the following rights, no matter what their immigration status. This information may change, so it is important to contact a lawyer. The following rights apply to non-citizens who are inside the U.S. Non-citizens at the border who are trying to enter the U.S. do not have all the same rights.

Do I have the right to talk to a lawyer before answering any DHS questions or signing any DHS papers?

Yes. You have the right to call a lawyer or your family if you are detained, and you have the right to be visited by a lawyer in detention. You have the right to have your attorney with you at any hearing before an immigration judge. You do not have the right to a government-appointed attorney for immigration proceedings, but if you have been arrested, immigration officials must show you a list of free or low cost legal service providers.

Should I carry my green card or other immigration papers with me?

If you have documents authorizing you to stay in the U.S., you must carry them with you. Presenting false or expired papers to DHS may lead to deportation or criminal prosecution. An unexpired green card, I-94, Employment Authorization Card, Border Crossing Card or other papers that prove you are in legal status will satisfy this requirement. If you do not carry these papers with you, you could be charged with a crime. Always keep a copy of your immigration papers with a trusted family member or friend who can fax them to you, if need be. Check with your immigration lawyer about your specific case.

Am I required to talk to government officers about my immigration history?

If you are undocumented, out of status, a legal permanent resident (green card holder), or a citizen, you do not have to answer any questions about your immigration history. (You may want to consider giving your name; see above for more information about this.) If you are not in any of these categories, and you are being questioned by a DHS or FBI agent, then you may create problems with your immigration status if you refuse to provide information requested by the agent. If you have a lawyer, you can tell the agent that your lawyer will answer questions on your behalf. If answering questions could lead the agent to information that connects you with criminal activity, you should consider refusing to talk to the agent at all.

If I am arrested for immigration violations, do I have the right to a hearing before an immigration judge to defend myself against deportation charges?

Yes. In most cases only an immigration judge can order you deported. But if you waive your rights or take “voluntary departure,” agreeing to leave the country, you could be deported without a hearing. If you have criminal convictions, were arrested at the border, came to the U.S. through the visa waiver program or have been ordered deported in the past, you could be deported without a hearing. Contact a lawyer immediately to see if there is any relief for you.

Can I call my consulate if I am arrested?

Yes. Non-citizens arrested in the U.S. have the right to call their consulate or to have the police tell the consulate of your arrest. The police must let your consulate visit or speak with you if consular officials decide to do so. Your consulate might help you find a lawyer or offer other help. You also have the right to refuse help from your consulate.

What happens if I give up my right to a hearing or leave the U.S. before the hearing is over?

You could lose your eligibility for certain immigration benefits, and you could be barred from returning to the U.S. for a number of years. You should always talk to an immigration lawyer before you decide to give up your right to a hearing.

What should I do if I want to contact DHS?

Always talk to a lawyer before contacting DHS, even on the phone. Many DHS officers view “enforcement” as their primary job and will not explain all of your options to you.

What Are My Rights at Airports?

IMPORTANT NOTE: It is illegal for law enforcement to perform any stops, searches, detentions or removals based solely on your race, national origin, religion, sex or ethnicity.

If I am entering the U.S. with valid travel papers can a U.S. customs agent stop and search me?

Yes. Customs agents have the right to stop, detain and search every person and item.

Can my bags or I be searched after going through metal detectors with no problem or after security sees that my bags do not contain a weapon?

Yes. Even if the initial screen of your bags reveals nothing suspicious, the screeners have the authority to conduct a further search of you or your bags.

If I am on an airplane, can an airline employee interrogate me or ask me to get off the plane?

The pilot of an airplane has the right to refuse to fly a passenger if he or she believes the passenger is a threat to the safety of the flight. The pilot’s decision must be reasonable and based on observations of you, not stereotypes.

What If I Am Under 18?

Do I have to answer questions?

No. Minors too have the right to remain silent. You cannot be arrested for refusing to talk to the police, probation officers, or school officials, except in some states you may have to give your name if you have been detained.
What if I am detained?

If you are detained at a community detention facility or Juvenile Hall, you normally must be released to a parent or guardian. If charges are filed against you, in most states you are entitled to counsel (just like an adult) at no cost.

Do I have the right to express political views at school?

Public school students generally have a First Amendment right to politically organize at school by passing out leaflets, holding meetings, etc., as long as those activities are not disruptive and do not violate legitimate school rules. You may not be singled out based on your politics, ethnicity or religion.

Can my backpack or locker be searched?

School officials can search students’ backpacks and lockers without a warrant if they reasonably suspect that you are involved in criminal activity or carrying drugs or weapons. Do not consent to the police or school officials searching your property, but do not physically resist or you may face criminal charges.


This booklet is not a substitute for legal advice. You should contact an attorney if you have been visited by the FBI or other law enforcement officials. You should also alert your relatives, friends, co-workers and others so that they will be prepared if they are contacted as well.

NLG National Hotline for Activists Contacted by the FBI



Letter from Lynne Stewart

9/27/12 9:15 am

Once again the 2d Circuit has turned me down–this time the whole Court, en
banc. Not surprising, I was well aware that we were dealing with the Company
Store and could expect very little. Nonetheless as a favorite line from Edna
St Vincent Millay:

“Pity me that the heart is slow to learn
What the Quick mind beholds at every turn”
I never lose hope that my case will be resolved as being too obvious a
contradiction to justice for them to sustain !

Our next stop is the petition for Certiorari to the Supreme Court, asking them
to hear us. We will be trying to impress them with the significant
wrongfulness of the whole prosecution itself and of the errors at trial and
later at sentencing. Our due date is some time in late December and we are
hoping to have Amicus support, so if you are part of a group that supports
lawyers or civil rights etc. please suggest it as early as possible. Contact
Jill Shellow, my lawyer by email, for further explanations.

Looking forward to my 73 birthday on October 8, the one bright ray of light is
that my husband, Ralph Poynter, will be speaking at the National Lawyers Guild
convention held in Pasadena, California from the 10th to 14th of October.

Addressing the Plenary he will speak of my case and that of other political
prisoners locked away for decades by a vindictive government. I wish I could
attend and meet and greet and hug and laugh with my lawyer buddies of many
years and many conventions but I will have to be content with my usual micro-
management style from afar — Texas, that is !!!

Meanwhile, I continue to tough it out. I am feeling quite well after the
surgery, an infection and then a severe iron deficiency — my usual vim and
vigor are back and ready for the fight with the Supreme Court who thinks
corporations are people—what will they make of me, a real person ??!! (smile)
Join me. Bring me Home, where I can join in some of the epic battles now at

Posted in BEHIND BARS, FROM LYNNE | No Comments »

“Court Denies Lynne Stewart Re-hearing” by Jeff Mackler

September 26th, 2012
Dear Friends of Lynne Stewart,
On Monday, September 24, 2012 the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
rejected Lynne’s appeal for a re-hearing before the entire court. Her original
conviction was upheld in 2009 by a three-judge panel of the Second Circuit.
The Second Circuit’s opinion was not unexpected. This was the same court that
earlier pressed Federal District Court John Koeltl to re-consider his original
28-month sentence and instead sentence Lynne to ten years.

Lynne, a leading civil rights attorney for 30 years, was convicted in 2005 on
frame-up charges of conspiracy to aid and abet terrorism. Her crime? She
issued a press release on behalf of her client, the “blind sheik” Omar Abdel
Rachman, a leading Egyptian Islamic cleric, was also a victim of the U.S. “war
on terror” when a government-instigated frame-up trial convicted him of
conspiracy to destroy New York buildings. Typical of “conspiracy” convictions,
no evidence of wrongdoing was presented at his trial.

Rachman, a leading critic of the Hosni Mubarack dictatorship in Egypt, and now
serving a life sentence in Rochester, Minnesota, was the subject of national
attention a few months ago when Egypt’s new president, Mohammad Morsi,
embarrassed the Obama administration by demanding his release.

Lynne’s attorneys explained on Monday that “The clock now starts running on
our Petition for Certiorari to the Supreme Court. We have 90 days to get it
filed (with the possibility of a 30-day extension).”

Lynne is presently imprisoned at FMC Carswell outside of Fort Worth, Texas.
She has successfully recovered from a difficult surgery that was spitefully
delayed by prison authorities. For the past 45 days Lynne was denied all
visitors, mail and other basic prison rights on the trumped-up accusation that she violated prison rules in assisting a fellow prisoner certify a legal document.

Her spirits are high and she is now going through a backlog of some 100-plus
letters from friends and supporters.

Here’s a brief summary/timeline of Lynne’s case.
- indicted on April 9, 2002;
- on February 10, 2005, convicted on all counts of conspiracy to aid and
abet terrorism;
- on October, 17, 2006, sentenced to 28 months;
- on November 17, 2009, a US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit three-
judge panel upheld the conviction, shamelessly accusing Lynne of “knowingly
and willfully making false statements,” re-directing her case to District
Court Judge John Koeltl for re-sentencing, instructing him to consider
enhancements for terrorism, perjury, and abuse of her position as a lawyer –
an outrageous mandate intimidating Koeltl to comply.
- on November 19, 2009, Stewart jailed at MCC-NY, 150 Park Row, New York, NY;
andon July 15, 2010, Stewart re-sentenced to 10 years imprisonment for doing
her job honorably, ethically, and admirably with distinction for 30 years.
Disgracefully, Judge Koeltl explained it, saying: .”(C)omments by Stewart in
2006, including a statement in a television interview that she would do ‘it’
again and would not ‘do anything differently’ influenced (the)
decisionŠ.indicat(ing) the original sentence ‘was not sufficient’ to reflect
the goals of sentencing guidelines.”

Forgotten were Koeltl’s October 2006 comments, calling Lynne’s character
“extraordinary,” saying she was “a credit to her profession,” and that a long
imprisonment would be “an unreasonable result,” citing “the somewhat atypical
nature of her case (and) lack of evidence that any victim was harmed.”
He also considered her age (70), health (at times poor), distinguished career
representing society’s disadvantaged and unwanted, and the unlikelihood she’d
commit another “crime.” However, the Second Circuit Appeals Court intimidated
him to comply, his own career perhaps on the line otherwise.

Please write Lynne at:
Lynne Stewart
FMC Carswell
P.O. Box 27137
Ft. Worth, Texas 76127
In solidarity,
Jeff Mackler, West Coast Coordinator
Lynne Stewart Defense Committee

Write to Lynne Stewart Defense Committee at:
Lynne Stewart Defense Committee
1070 Dean Street
Brooklyn, New York 11216
For further information: 718-789-0558 or 917-853-9759 

Visiting Lynne:

Visiting is very liberal but first she has to get people on her visiting list;
wait til she or the lawyers let you know. The visits are FRI, SAT, SUN AND MON for 4 hours and on
weekends 8 to 3. Bring clear plastic change purse with lots of change to buy from the
machines. Brief Kiss upon arrival and departure, no touching or holding during visit (!!) On visiting
forms it may be required that you knew me before I came to prison. Not a problem for most of

Commissary Money:

Commissary Money is always welcome It is how Lynne pay for the phone and for

Also for a lot that prison doesn't supply in terms of food and "sundries"
(pens!) (A very big list that includes Raisins, Salad Dressing, ankle sox, mozzarella (definitely
not from Antonys--more like a white cheddar, Sanitas Corn Chips but no Salsa, etc. To add money,
you do this by using Western Union and a credit card by phone or you can send a USPO money
order or Business or Govt Check. The negotiable instruments (PAPER!) need to be sent to

Bureau of Prisons, 53504-054, Lynne Stewart, PO Box 474701, Des Moines Iowa

(Payable to Lynne Stewart, 53504-054) They hold the mo or checks for 15 days.

Union costs $10 but is within 2 hours. If you mail, your return address must be
on the envelope. Unnecessarily complicated? Of course, it's the BOP !)

The address of her Defense Committee is:

Lynne Stewart Defense Committee
1070 Dean Street
Brooklyn, New York 11216

For further information:

718-789-0558 or 917-853-9759

Please make a generous contribution to her defense.


Free Mumia NOW!

Write to Mumia:

Mumia Abu-Jamal AM 8335

SCI Mahanoy

301 Morea Road

Frackville, PA 17932

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Rachel Wolkenstein
August 21, 2011 (917) 689-4009

On August 13, 2012, without any notice and in violation of his constitutional rights and state law, Mumia Abu-Jamal was formally sentenced by Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas Judge Pamela Dembe to life imprisonment without parole. The impact of this illegal sentencing is to prevent a possible challenge to the slow death of life imprisonment. All sentences, including "mandatory" sentences, require a formal proceeding allowing the person to be sentenced the right to be heard and to challenge his sentence.

Mumia confirmed to his son Jamal and to attorney Rachel Wolkenstein during a visit with him on Sunday, August 19, 2012, that he had no prior knowledge of the re-sentencing. The record of this re-sentencing is contained in the official Court of Common Pleas Docket Sheet. In attempting to find out more details, Wolkenstein searched for the court file on August 20. But there is no file containing a record of this sentencing with the Criminal Division Court of Common Pleas Clerk. The information released so far by Elaine Rattliff, Deputy Clerk of Courts is that the sentencing followed a call from the Department of Corrections and further explanation awaits a call back from Court of Common Pleas Judge Pamela Dembe.

Notably Judge Dembe is same judge who refused in 2001 to consider a legal challenge to "hanging judge" Albert Sabo's self-confessed racism and bias against Mumia during his trial and post-conviction appeals from 1995-1998. Court reporter Terri Mauer-Carter heard Sabo declare before the start of the trial, "I'm going to help them fry the n-----."

For thirty years Mumia was kept in solitary confinement on death row under a death sentence that was illegally and unconstitutionally imposed. Federal district court Judge William Yohn ruled in December 2001 that Judge Albert Sabo incorrectly and unconstitutionally instructed the jury in deciding on life or death. Despite this decision, Mumia was kept on death row, in solitary confinement for the next ten years, while the prosecution pursued two appeals in the Federal Court of Appeals and two attempts at U.S. Supreme Court rulings to uphold the death sentence. All that time, Mumia sat in solitary confinement. According to Juan Mendez, the United Nations Special Rappatour on Torture, solitary confinement for longer than 15 days is a form of torture! Mumia should be freed from prison, now!

This latest legal outrage comes nine months after the state conceded defeat in obtaining its desired "legal lynching" of Mumia. On December 8, 2011, Philadelphia District Attorney, Seth Williams—with the support of Maureen Faulkner, the Fraternal Order of Police and former District Attorney, Philadelphia Mayor and PA governor, Edward Rendell—announced that they were no longer seeking a death sentence for Mumia. This was their recognition that it was neither legally possible nor politically advantageous to hold a new sentencing hearing.

Mumia's 1982 trial contained violations of every single element of due process and a fair trial. But it began with framing an innocent man. Mumia was framed for a crime he did not commit. His crime in the eyes of the state is that he was and continues to be "the voice of the voiceless," a former spokesman for the Black Panther Party and continuing supporter of the MOVE organization.

In his first phone call from general population on January 28, 2012, Mumia relayed the following message to his wife, Wadiya Jamal: "My dear friends, brothers and sisters – I want to thank you for your real hard work and support. I am no longer on death row, no longer in the hole, I'm in population. This is only Part One and I thank you for the work you've done. But the struggle is for freedom!"


Police Attack Antiwar Protester

Police Brutality Against Anti War demonstrator Buffalo New York 2011
NFTA Police and anti terror task force assault anti war demonstration in Buffalo.
Nate Buckley maced while in handcuffs. His new trial date is October 16, 2012.

For updates or to donate please go to:
Sign the petition:
Watch a video of the incident:


Sign the petition for the NATO 5!
Drop all charges against the NATO 5 and all anti-NATO protesters!
Protesters are still being held in Cook County Jail in Chicago. Release them all
Sign the Petition Here:

The charges against the NATO 5 and the others are false. All these prisoners
urgently need your solidarity. Please sign our petition. Share it with your
family, friends and coworkers. Signing the petition will generate a direct email

Illinois State's Attorney Anita Alvarez
Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart
Chicago Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy, and
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel,
and several other public officials, demanding all charges against the NATO5
be dropped.

Email addresses for the targets

Thanks for your ongoing interest in the fight against FBI repression of anti-war
and international solidarity activists!

Our mailing address is:

Committee to Stop FBI Repression

PO Box 14183

Minneapolis, MN 55414


Tarek Mehanna - another victim of the U.S. War to Terrorize Everyone. He was
targeted because he would not spy on his Muslim community for the FBI. Under the
new NDAA indefinite military detention provision, Tarek is someone who likely
would never come to a trial, although an American citizen. His sentencing is on
April 12. There will be an appeal.

Another right we may kiss goodbye. We should not accept the verdict and continue
to fight for his release, just as we do for hero Bradley Manning, and all the
many others unjustly persecuted by our government until it is the war criminals
on trial, prosecuted by the people, and not the other way around.

Marilyn Levin

Official defense website:



(For a complete analysis of the prospects of war, click here)


"A Child's View from Gaza: Palestinian Children's Art and the Fight Against
Censorship" book


Justice for Albert Woodfox and Herman Wallace: Decades of isolation in Louisiana
state prisons must end

Take Action -- Sign Petition Here:\




Write to Bradley

View the new 90 second "I am Bradley Manning" video:

I am Bradley Manning

Courage to Resist

484 Lake Park Ave. #41

Oakland, CA 94610


"A Fort Leavenworth mailing address has been released for Bradley Manning:

Bradley Manning 89289

830 Sabalu Road

Fort Leavenworth, KS 66027

The receptionist at the military barracks confirmed that if someone sends
Bradley Manning a letter to that address, it will be delivered to him."

This is also a Facebook event!/event.php?eid=2071005093\

Courage to Resist needs your support

Please donate today:

"Soldiers sworn oath is to defend and support the Constitution. Bradley Manning
has been defending and supporting our Constitution." --Dan Ellsberg, Pentagon
Papers whistle-blower

Jeff Paterson

Project Director, Courage to Resist

First US military service member to refuse to fight in Iraq

Please donate today.

P.S. I'm asking that you consider a contribution of $50 or more, or possibly
becoming a sustainer at $15 a month. Of course, now is also a perfect time to
make a end of year tax-deductible donation. Thanks again for your support!

Please click here to forward this to a friend who might also be interested in
supporting GI resisters.


The Battle Is Still On To


The Labor Action Committee To Free Mumia Abu-Jamal

PO Box 16222 • Oakland CA 94610


Call for EMERGENCY RESPONSE Action if Assange Indicted,

Dear Friends:

We write in haste, trying to reach as many of you as possible although the
holiday break has begun.......This plan for an urgent "The Day After"
demonstration is one we hope you and many, many more organizations will take up
as your own, and mobilize for. World Can't Wait asks you to do all you can to
spread it through list serves, Facebook, twitter, holiday gatherings.

Our proposal is very very simple, and you can use the following announcement to
mobilize - or write your own....



New Federal Building, 7th and Mission, San Francisco (nearest BART: Civic

4:00-6:00 PM on The Day FOLLOWING U.S. indictment of Assange

Demonstrations defending Wikileaks and Assange, and Brad Manning, have already
been flowering around the world. Make it happen here too. Especially here . . .

To join into this action plan, or with questions, contact World Can't Wait or
whichever organization or listserve you received this message from.

World Can't Wait, SF Bay




Reasonable doubts about executing Kevin Cooper

Chronicle Editorial

Monday, December 13, 2010

Death penalty -- Kevin Cooper is Innocent! Help save his life from San Quentin's
death row!


- From Amnesty International USA

17 December 2010

Click here to take action online:\

To learn about recent Urgent Action successes and updates, go to

For a print-friendly version of this Urgent Action (PDF):


Short Video About Al-Awda's Work

The following link is to a short video which provides an overview of Al-Awda's
work since the founding of our organization in 2000. This video was first shown
on Saturday May 23, 2009 at the fundraising banquet of the 7th Annual Int'l
Al-Awda Convention in Anaheim California. It was produced from footage collected
over the past nine years.


Support Al-Awda, a Great Organization and Cause!

Al-Awda, The Palestine Right to Return Coalition, depends on your financial
support to carry out its work.

To submit your tax-deductible donation to support our work, go to

and follow the simple instructions.

Thank you for your generosity!



[Some of these videos are embeded on the BAUAW website: or]




On Gun Control, Martin Luther King, the Deacons of Defense and the history of Black Liberation


Danny Glover Greetings to the Labour Start Global Solidarity Conference 

Join Danny Glover in supporting Nissan Mississippi workers' right to have a free and fair union election. Go to: and send a message to Nissan to stop the union busting and DO BETTER. For more information go to:

Danny Glover, the star of Lethal Weapon and other Hollywood blockbusters, delivered a message to the LabourStart conference which opened yesterday in Sydney, Australia. 

I'd like to ask you to take a minute to watch the video:

Then please sign up to the online campaign, here:

Here's why:

Management at Nissan’s plant in Mississippi is running an aggressive and sophisticated anti-union campaign against its employees who are forming a union to achieve a voice in the workplace.

Nissan is denying these workers a fair, democratic election, and management has sent a clear message to the workforce that considering a union could cost them their job.

Supported by workers, students, community leaders and human rights activists around the world, the United Auto Workers (UAW) have launched a campaign on LabourStart calling on Nissan’s Chief Operating Officer, Toshiyuki Shiga, to intervene to make things right in Mississippi.

Speaking yesterday at the LabourStart conference now taking place in Sydney Jeffrey Moore, one of the Mississippi auto workers, said:

“Nissan workers are seeking union representation because they want fairness and a chance to be heard.  They are seeking a voice on the job just like their colleagues in Japan and elsewhere.”

“At Canton Mississippi, Nissan management is making propaganda against the UAW and intimidating workers depriving them from a free choice. This is unacceptable and against freedom of association,” said Jyrki Raina, General Secretary of IndustriALL Global Union in support of the workers’ campaign.

“UAW has offered Nissan a positive, collaborative approach, but the US management is refusing partnership despite the fact that most of Nissan's operations in countries such as Mexico, Spain, UK, Russia, Japan, Australia, South Africa and Thailand are unionized and enjoy constructive labour and management relations,” said Raina.

Please spread the word -- let's make sure that Nissan is overwhelmed with messages of support for the workers in Canton, Mississippi.  Please forward this message to your fellow union members, your friends and your family.

Thank you.

Eric Lee

Fukushima Never Again

"Fukushima, Never Again" tells the story of the Fukushima nuclear plant meltdowns in north east Japan in March of 2011 and exposes the cover-up by Tepco and the Japanese government.
This is the first film that interviews the Mothers Of Fukushima, nuclear power experts and trade unionists who are fighting for justice and the protection of the children and the people of Japan and the world. The residents and citizens were forced to buy their own geiger counters and radiation dosimeters in order to test their communities to find out if they were in danger.
The government said contaminated soil in children's school grounds was safe and then
when the people found out it was contaminated and removed the top soil, the government and TEPCO refused to remove it from the school grounds.
It also relays how the nuclear energy program for "peaceful atoms" was brought to Japan under the auspices of the US military occupation and also the criminal cover-up of the safety dangers of the plant by TEPCO and GE management which built the plant in Fukushima. It also interviews Kei Sugaoka, the GE nulcear plant inspector from the bay area who exposed cover-ups in the safety at the Fukushima plant and was retaliated against by GE. This documentary allows the voices of the people and workers to speak out about the reality of the disaster and what this means not only for the people of Japan but the people of the world as the US government and nuclear industry continue to push for more new plants and government subsidies. This film breaks
the information blockade story line of the corporate media in Japan, the US and around the world that Fukushima is over.
Production Of Labor Video Project
P.O. Box 720027
San Francisco, CA 94172
For information on obtaining the video go to:


Labor Beat: SOJO - The Fight for Social Justice High School 
["This is not an education plan, it's a business plan." quote from the] 

The fight for community democratic control of Social Justice High School is an important battle waged during the countdown to a possible strike of the Chicago Teachers Union in early September, 2012. And on August 31, students and faculty achieved a victory in forcing SOJO (as the High School is known) to hire back two teachers who were earlier fired for opposing destructive changes in the school's programs. All this took place in the midst of a student sit-in, an intense mass meeting of the school community, and a powerful student protest campaign that got the fired teachers reinstated.

Here are scenes from that fight: The dramatic August 23 mass meeting, testimonies of student leaders (one who reads a poem she was earlier prohibited from reading by CPS toadies), a big Chicago Teachers Solidarity Campaign indoor rally featuring speeches by the two fired teachers Angela Sangha and Katie Hogan; the student protest march two days later; the reinstatement of the two fired faculty members.

Speaking/interviewed: Andrea Guzman (Little Village community activist); Professor David Stovall (Advisory Local School Council representative); Dennis Kosuth (Chicago Teachers Solidarity Campaign member); Angela Sangha (founding teacher, Social Justice High School); Katie Hogan (founding teacher, Social Justice High School); Professor Rico Gutstein (University of Illinois - Chicago).

Please make a Donation to Labor Beat (Committee for Labor Access) and help rank-and-file tv:

Produced by Labor Beat. Labor Beat is a CAN TV Community Partner. Labor Beat is a non-profit 501(c)(3) member of IBEW 1220. Views are those of the producer Labor Beat. For info:, 312-226-3330. For other Labor Beat videos, visit YouTube and search "Labor Beat".

On Chicago CAN TV Channel 19, Thursdays 9:30 pm; Fridays 4:30 pm. Labor Beat has regular cable slots in Chicago, Evanston, Rockford, Urbana, IL; Philadelphia, PA; Princeton, NJ; and Rochester, NY. For more detailed information, send us a request at


all the sons 
By Tommi Avicolli Mecca

Published on Aug 27, 2012 by
Men have been going off to war for centuries. In the past couple centuries, they have been migrating to other countries (especially the U.S.) for work. They have been organizing, too, to fight oppression and stop the deaths of their sons and brothers.

"And I don't know why it has to be this way again."

I wrote this song for the mothers, too, who lose their sons to war and murder by police officers. Maybe someday "it doesn't have to be this way again."


Labor Beat: Chicago Teachers Stand Strong

On May 23, 2012, Chicago Teachers Union held a massive rally at the Auditorium
theater to inform their membership about the coming contract struggle they face.
In the climate of school closings, budget cuts, a terrible new proposed
contract, and teacher-bashing on the part of Mayor Rahm Emmanuel and Chicago
schools CEO Jean-Claude Brizzard, CTU took to the streets to show their numbers
and appeal to the public, and within two weeks CTU was voting to authorize a

Meanwhile a few blocks away, Stand Up Chicago, Action Now, and many other
community organizations rallied against the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME,
the operator of the Chicago Board of Trade) and the $110 million tax break
they've been given by Illinois. CME is one of the most profitable companies in
the region, and yet now Illinois government is making broad cuts to social
programs needed by struggling families. These two marches converged at Jackson
and LaSalle in a unified demand for economic justice for Chicago's 99%.

Please make a Donation to Labor Beat (Committee for Labor Access) and help
rank-and-file tv:

Produced by Labor Beat. Labor Beat is a CAN TV Community Partner. Labor Beat is
a non-profit 501(c)(3) member of IBEW 1220. Views are those of the producer
Labor Beat. For info:, 312-226-3330. For
other Labor Beat videos, visit YouTube and search "Labor Beat".

On Chicago CAN TV Channel 19, Thursdays 9:30 pm; Fridays 4:30 pm. Labor Beat has
regular cable slots in Chicago, Evanston, Rockford, Urbana, IL; Philadelphia,
PA; Princeton, NJ; and Rochester, NY.


Guantanamo Bay Prisoners Were Tortured with Sesame Street\

Guantanamo Bay prisoners were reportedly tortured with the sounds of children's
Sesame Street songs, in an attempt to get them to talk.

Read more at\


15 yr old Teen girl in jail beating video speaks out on cop attacking her in
Police brutality case


1000 year of war through the world


Anatomy of a Massacre - Afganistan

Afghans accuse multiple soldiers of pre-meditated murder

To see more go to

Follow us on Facebook ( or Twitter

The recent massacre of 17 civilians by a rogue US soldier has been shrouded in
mystery. But through unprecedented access to those involved, this report
confronts the accusations that Bales didn't act alone.

"They came into my room and they killed my family". Stories like this are common
amongst the survivors in Aklozai and Najiban. As are the shocking accusations
that Sergeant Bales was not acting alone. Even President Karzai has announced
"one man can not do that". Chief investigator, General Karimi, is suspicious
that despite being fully armed, Bales freely left his base without raising
alarm. "How come he leaves at night and nobody is aware? Every time we have
weapon accountability and personal accountability." These are just a few of the
questions the American army and government are yet to answer. One thing however
is very clear, the massacre has unleashed a wave of grief and outrage which
means relations in Kandahar will be tense for years to come: "If I could lay my
hands on those infidels, I would rip them apart with my bare hands."

A Film By SBS

Distributed By Journeyman Pictures

April 2012


Photo of George Zimmerman, in 2005 photo, left, and in a more recent photo.\

SPD Security Cams.wmv


Kids being put on buses and transported from school to "alternate locations" in
Terror Drills


Private prisons,

a recession resistant investment opportunity


Attack Dogs used on a High School Walkout in MD, Four Students Charged With

"Thought Crimes"


Common forms of misconduct by Law Enforcement Officials and Prosecutors


Organizing & Instigating: OCCUPY - Ronnie Goodman


Rep News 12: Yes We Kony


The New Black by The Mavrix - Official Music Video


Japan One Year Later


The CIA's Heart Attack Gun\


The Invisible American Workforce


Labor Beat: NATO vs The 1st Amendment

For more detailed information, send us a request at


Anti-War Demonstrators Storm Pentagon 1967/10/24


Liberal Hypocrisy on Obama Vs Bush - Poll


Greek trade unionists and black bloc October 2011!


The Battle of Oakland

by brandon jourdan plus


Officers Pulled Off Street After Tape of Beating Surfaces


February 1, 2012, 10:56 am\


Defending The People's Mic

by Pham Binh of Occupy Wall Street

The North Star

January 20, 2012

Grand Central Terminal Arrests - MIRROR

Two protesters mic check about the loss of freedom brought about by the passage
of the NDAA and both are promptly arrested and whisked out of public sight.


This is excellent! Michelle Alexander pulls no punches!

Michelle Alexander, Author of The New Jim Crow, speaks about the political

behind the War on Drugs and its connection to the mass incarceration of Black
and Brown people in the United States.

If you think Bill Clinton was "the first black President" you need to watch this
video and see how much damage his administration caused for the black community
as a result of his get tough attitude on crime that appealed to white swing

This speech took place at Abyssinian Baptist Church in Harlem on January 12,


Release Bradley Manning

Almost Gone (The Ballad Of Bradley Manning)

Written by Graham Nash and James Raymond (son of David Crosby)

School police increasingly arresting American students?



Nuclear Detonation Timeline "1945-1998"

The 2053 nuclear tests and explosions that took place between 1945 and 1998 are
plotted visually and audibly on a world map.


We Are the 99 Percent

We are the 99 percent. We are getting kicked out of our homes. We are forced to
choose between groceries and rent. We are denied quality medical care. We are
suffering from environmental pollution. We are working long hours for little pay
and no rights, if we're working at all. We are getting nothing while the other 1
percent is getting everything. We are the 99 percent.

Brought to you by the people who occupy wall street. Why will YOU occupy?


Drop All Charges on the 'Occupy Wall Street' Arrestees!

Stop Police Attacks & Arrests! Support 'Occupy Wall Street'!




We Are The People Who Will Save Our Schools



In honor of the 75th Anniversary of the 44-Day Flint Michigan sit-down strike at
GM that began December 30, 1936:

According to Michael Moore, (Although he has done some good things, this clip
isn't one of them) in this clip from his film, "Capitalism a Love Story," it was
Roosevelt who saved the day!):

"After a bloody battle one evening, the Governor of Michigan, with the support
of the President of the United States, Franklin Roosevelt, sent in the National
Guard. But the guns and the soldiers weren't used on the workers; they were
pointed at the police and the hired goons warning them to leave these workers
alone. For Mr. Roosevelt believed that the men inside had a right to a redress
of their grievances." -Michael Moore's 'Capitalism: A Love Story'

- Flint Sit-Down Strike

But those cannons were not aimed at the goons and cops! They were aimed straight
at the factory filled with strikers! Watch what REALLY happened and how the
strike was really won!

'With babies & banners' -- 75 years since the 44-day Flint sit-down strike



HALLELUJAH CORPORATIONS (revised edition).mov




ILWU Local 10 Longshore Workers Speak-Out At Oakland Port Shutdown

Uploaded by laborvideo on Dec 13, 2011

ILWU Local 10 longshore workers speak out during a blockade of the Port of
Oakland called for by Occupy Oakland. Anthony Levieges and Clarence Thomas rank
and file members of the union. The action took place on December 12, 2011 and
the interview took place at Pier 30 on the Oakland docks.

For more information on the ILWU Local 21 Longview EGT struggle go to

For further info on the action and the press conferernce go to:

Production of Labor Video Project


UC Davis Police Violence Adds Fuel to Fire

By Scott Galindez, Reader Supported News

19 November 11\

UC Davis Protestors Pepper Sprayed


Police pepper spraying and arresting students at UC Davis


UC Davis Chancellor Katehi walks to her car!

Occupy Seattle - 84 Year Old Woman Dorli Rainey Pepper Sprayed




Shot by police with rubber bullet at Occupy Oakland


Copwatch@Occupy Oakland: Beware of Police Infiltrators and Provocateurs


Occupy Oakland 11-2 Strike: Police Tear Gas, Black Bloc, War in the Streets


Quebec police admitted that, in 2007, thugs carrying rocks to a peaceful protest
were actually undercover Quebec police officers:

POLICE STATE Criminal Cops EXPOSED As Agent Provocateurs @ SPP Protest


Quebec police admit going undercover at montebello protests

G20: Epic Undercover Police Fail



Occupy Oakland Protest

Cops make mass arrests at occupy Oakland

Raw Video: Protesters Clash With Oakland Police

Occupy Oakland - Flashbangs USED on protesters OPD LIES

KTVU TV Video of Police violence

Marine Vet wounded, tear gas & flash-bang grenades thrown in downtown

Tear Gas billowing through 14th & Broadway in Downtown Oakland

Arrests at Occupy Atlanta -- This is what a police state looks like


Labor Beat: Hey You Billionaire, Pay Your Fair Share


Voices of Occupy Boston 2011 - Kwame Somburu (Paul Boutelle) Part I

Voices of Occupy Boston 2011 - Kwame Somburu (Paul Boutelle) Part II


#Occupy Wall Street In Washington Square: Mohammed Ezzeldin, former occupier of
Egypt's Tahrir Square Speaks at Washington Square!


#OccupyTheHood, Occupy Wall Street

By adele pham


Live arrest at brooklyn bridge #occupywallstreet by We are Change




One World One Revolution -- MUST SEE VIDEO -- Powerful and

"When injustice becomes law, resistance becomes duty." Thomas Jefferson


Japan: angry Fukushima citizens confront government (video)

Posted by Xeni Jardin on Monday, Jul 25th at 11:36am



I received the following reply from the White House November 18, 2011 regarding
the Bradley Manning petition I signed:

"Why We Can't Comment on Bradley Manning

"Thank you for signing the petition 'Free PFC Bradley Manning, the accused
WikiLeaks whistleblower.' We appreciate your participation in the We the People
platform on

The We the People Terms of Participation explain that 'the White House may
decline to address certain procurement, law enforcement, adjudicatory, or
similar matters properly within the jurisdiction of federal departments or
agencies, federal courts, or state and local government.' The military justice
system is charged with enforcing the Uniform Code of

Military Justice. Accordingly, the White House declines to comment on the
specific case raised in this petition...

That's funny! I guess Obama didn't get this memo. Here's what Obama said about


"He broke the law!" says Obama about Bradley Manning who has yet to even be
charged, let alone, gone to trial and found guilty. How horrendous is it for the
President to declare someone guilty before going to trial or being charged with
a crime! Justice in the U.S.A.!

Obama on FREE BRADLEY MANNING protest... San Francisco, CA. April 21, 2011-
Presidential remarks on interrupt/interaction/performance art happening at
fundraiser. Logan Price queries Barack after org. FRESH JUICE PARTY political


Labor Beat: Labor Stands with Subpoenaed Activists Against FBI Raids and Grand
Jury Investigation of antiwar and social justice activists.

"If trouble is not at your door. It's on it's way, or it just left."

"Investigate the Billionaires...Full investigation into Wall Street..." Jesse
Sharkey, Vice

President, Chicago Teachers Union


Julian Assange: Why the world needs WikiLeaks


Coal Ash: One Valley's Tale