Friends of MOVE Chapter in local area- FREE THE MOVE PRISONERS!

 

ONAMOVE!

 

Redwood Curtain CopWatch, in 2008, instigated the formation of a local Friends of MOVE chapter.  Please read about the MOVE organization and help get the MOVE 9 prisoners released- They've been in Pennsylvania prisons since 1978!

 

Free the MOVE 9!

 

Free Mumia Abu-Jamal!  Click HERE for an up-to-date summary about Mumia's frame-up and the movement to free him.

 

Get informed about MOVE.  We have lots of information at FRIENDS OF MOVE

tags: 

Mumia 101: An Urgent Appeal

An Urgent Appeal from a long-time friend of
Mumia Abu-Jamal

A message from the Labor Action Committee To Free Mumia Abu-Jamal
03 September 2010


     The letter below, from Frances Goldin, Mumia's literary agent and long-time friend and supporter, is an urgent call for help which we hope you will look at closely.

     The life of the world's best known death row prisoner, Mumia Abu-Jamal, is under threat from many sides.  One is the courts, which have refused to hear mountains of evidence of Mumia's innocence, and have denied him the benefit of established law and precedent on many occasions.  Mumia's 1982 kangaroo court conviction was upheld by the Supreme Court last year.  And now, the reinstatement of his death sentence, which was put on hold in 2001, is the likely outcome at the Third Circuit Court.

     Another threat is the so-called police "union," the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP), which has a full-blown vendetta out against Mumia, aimed at executing him for a crime that he did not commit. And why does the FOP froth at the mouth over the prospect of killing Mumia? Perhaps it's because corrupt police are thought to be the real perpetrators of the crime, since the victim was a cop who was talking to the feds about corruption!

     Another is the media, which systematically blanks out positive reports and letters about Mumia.  Instead they publish lies about his case, which are actively promoted by the FOP.  A good example is the movie "The Barrel Of A Gun," which is a re-hash of the police frame-up of Mumia, due to be released very soon, in September 2010.

     As the letter below indicates, now there is an answer to these lies, in the form of another video documentary which tells the truth about Mumia's case: Mumia 101.  But it needs your support.

     We hope you will read the letter below and contribute generously, so that this project can go forward.

_  _  _  _  _  _  _  _  _  _  _

This note is from Mumia's literary agent, and close friend, Frances Goldin:

Dear friends:

I hope you will dig deep in response to the letter below.  I have given them $6,000. At this time we have to awaken the people’s conscience, particularly in light of the upcoming lying film by Tigre Hill.

I don’t make this type of request often, but Mumia’s very life is at stake.

Make checks payable to:

National Lawyers Guild Foundation and write “Mumia 101” in the memo line.

Mail to:

Frances Goldin
305 East 11th Street, #3F
New York, NY  10003

Thanks so much- Frances

LETTER SHE ENCLOSED:

As we write, Mumia Abu-Jamal and his attorneys are using their last legal resorts to save him from the fate he now faces: life in solitary confinement or even execution, which, after being overturned in 2001, is on the table once again. Mumia's case has always been highly politicized, but today as his legal battle comes to its final stage, the court of public opinion matters more than ever. Those intent on ending Mumia's life like the highly vocal Philadelphia Fraternal Order of Police understand this, and have intensified their activity. Those of us who want to save Mumia's life need to intensify ours as well.

In September, a dangerous new film, which parrots the prosecution and police claim--that Abu-Jamal shot and killed Philadelphia Police Officer Daniel Faulkner in a cold-blooded act of premeditated murder--will premiere in Philadelphia, before it tours nationally. Directed by filmmaker Tigre Hill and provocatively titled The Barrel Of A Gun, the film is a work of propaganda posing as documentary, thin on facts and thick with emotional manipulation.

Luckily, a fine documentary, “Mumia 101”, which could challenge Hill's film with information and historical insights, and new and potentially exculpatory evidence, is almost completed. We have seen the rough cut and it's clear that director Kouross Esmaeli (Big Noise Films) and producer Johanna Fernandez (Baruch College of History and Educators for Mumia) have made every effort to make “Mumia 101” fair and balanced, giving both sides time to talk and letting facts, not emotionalism, point to the police, prosecutorial, and judicial misconduct that led to Mumia's 1982 conviction.

Mumia 101 must be completed by September when The Barrel of a Gun premieres. In order for that to happen the filmmakers (who have undertaken the work as a labor of love) will have to hire a film editor full-time for two months of final editing. I have written them a check, and I am writing to ask you to write one too, for whatever you can manage. They need $100,000 to finish the film.

The filmmakers are preparing an interactive website to complement the documentary, to review the known facts of the case and serve as its major information clearinghouse. They are available to answer any questions you may have at:

kouross@bignoisefilms.org and johanna.fernandez@baruch.cuny.edu.

Here are links to articles that review some of the basics of the case along with the new evidence:
http://www.emajonline.com/index.php?action=O&extra=&cat id=2l

Please make out your checks for your tax-deductible contribution to the National Lawyers Guild Foundation and write "Mumia 101" in the memo line.

Mail your check to:

Frances Goldin
305 East 11th Street, #3F
New York, NY  10003

 

Thank you for your attention to this urgent request.
-The Labor Action Committee To Free Mumia Abu-Jamal.
See our website for information on Mumia's Innocence, at: www.laboractionmumia.org.

Report of July 8th Hearing on Murder Complaints filed by MOVE

Here's what happened at the hearing on our murder complaints, no surprise.  This explains why MOVE takes the position we do against this rotten system, and why anybody that stills has faith in it is foolish---Ramona

LONG LIVE JOHN AFRICA’S REVOLUTION

As most of you no doubt know by now, we had a hearing in court today, July 8th, on the murder complaints that we filed against officials involved in the May 1985 bombing and murder of innocent MOVE family members. The issue is very simple and very clear. Officials deliberately dropped a C4 bomb on our home and the bomb ignited a fire which officials deliberately refused to put out. When we attempted to get out of the blazing inferno, cops deliberately shot at us to try to prevent any of us from surviving. As a result of this, eleven innocent MOVE men, women, children and numerous animals were literally burned alive and found to have bullet fragments in their bodies from police gunfire. Not one single official in these past twenty-five years was ever charged with murdering our family. I’m the only one to be charged with anything and imprisoned. We, the MOVE family, filed private criminal murder complaints against officials responsible for the murder of our family.  The district attorney’s office refused our complaints so we appealed to common pleas court. Judge Frank Palumbo refused our complaints, adhearing to assistant district attorney William James’ arguments that it’s been twenty-five years and “it wouldn’t be in the interest of the commonwealth” to persue these charges. This is not surprising but it is unacceptable and we are appealing Palumbo’s decision. There is no statute of limitations on murder in Pennsylvania and how can it not be in the interest of the commonwealth, the people, to prosecute obvious murderers? The MOVE 9 have been in prison for thirty-two years for the false accusation of killing a cop even though officials destroyed the scene of the crime within hours of arresting my family and even though the trial judge stated after convicting and sentencing my family to thirty to one-hundred years that he didn’t have the faintest idea who killed that cop and the trajectory of the fatal bullet proves that MOVE didn’t kill him. The murder of my family was witnessed around the world. There is no question about who murdered innocent MOVE family members yet the didtrict attorney’s office refuses to prosecute these official murderers. The didtrict attorney’s office fights everyday to prosecute people, even when they have little to no evidence against the person. In this case, however, the district attorney’s office is fighting tooth and nail to keep from prosecuting these official murderers. Why? They are telling people very clearly that cops and officials can murder people, burn people alive, including babies, and not be held accountable but if anybody is even suspected of killing a cop or official they’ll be hunted down and punished to the harshest extent possible. People need to take this seriously and people should be outraged about it. How many times does this system have to tell people that our lives are worth nothing, that only the lives of rich folks, cops and officials mean anything or are worth anything? Officials accuse MOVE of being violent, confrontational and having no respect for their legal system. MOVE have never been violent but we do believe in the instinctive right of self defense which has nothing at all to do with being violent. We will always confront anybody that attacks us or tries to hurt us or any family member and I defy anybody to prove that to be wrong, and why would anybody have respect for a system that has always shown itself to be racist, unjust and vicious. People wonder why we of MOVE take the strong position we do against this rotten system, why we come after it the way we do, well the position of district attorney Seth Williams and judge Frank Palumbo tells you why. MOVE is always gonna fight injustice, we ain’t never gonna stop, and if our enemy labels our fight criminal or illegal, so what. What would you expect from your enemy?

 

For more info or to get involved, contact MOVE at 215 387-4107/ onamovellja@aol.com

 

 

Several So-Called 'Prison Abolitionists' from the U.S. Secretly Try to Ban Mumia from Speaking at 4th World Congress Against the Death Penalty

The Politics of Death: Throwing Mumia Abu-Jamal Under the Bus

Created 06/29/2010
By Dave Lindorff

"I would unite with anybody to do right and with nobody to do wrong."
--Frederick Douglass

On the evening of February 25, participants at the Fourth World Congress Against the Death Penalty in Geneva, Switzerland had assembled from all over the globe for a dramatic Voices of Victims evening. It got more dramatic than they had anticipated though, when suddenly a cell phone rang and Robert R. Bryan, lead defense attorney for Mumia Abu-Jamal, jumped up on the stage to announce that his client had called him from death row in Pennsylvania.

The audience sat in rapt silence as the emcee held the phone up to the microphone. Abu-Jamal, on death row for 28 years after a widely disputed conviction for the murder of Philadelphia police officer Daniel Faulkner, greeted the delegates and then, as he has done on many occasions before, described to them the horrors of life in prison for the 20,000 people around the world who are awaiting execution.

A small group of American death penalty abolitionist leaders, led by Renny Cushing, executive director of Murder Victims' Families for Human Rights, stalked out of the hall. Two members of MVFHR, however, remained in the hall: Bill Babbitt, whose brother Manny, a Vietnam vet suffering acute post-traumatic stress disorder, was executed in California; and Bill Pelke, whose grandmother was murdered by a girl whom he later befriended and helped to spare from execution. Babbitt even joined Bryan onstage during Abu-Jamal's brief address.

What neither Babbitt nor Pelke, nor Abu-Jamal and his attorney, Bryan, knew at the time was that way back in December, leaders and individual board members of several of the organizations in the US abolitionist movement had signed--without their full boards’ or their memberships’ knowledge--a “confidential” memorandum [1], which they then sent to the French organizers of the World Congress, stating bluntly that, “As international representatives of the US abolition movement, we cannot agree to the involvement of Abu-Jamal or his lawyers in the World Congress beyond attendance.”

 Purporting to be from “the US members of the Steering Committee” of the World Coalition Against the Death Penalty (though hardly an inclusive list of that committee’s membership) and titled, “Involvement of Mumia Abu-Jamal endangers the US coalition for abolition of the death penalty,” the memo claimed that the French organizers of the World Congress, Together Against the Death Penalty (ECPM), had arranged to have Abu-Jamal speak “over objection.” The memo further further asserted that the abolitionist movement in the US is trying to “cultivate” the support of the ultra-conservative and staunchly pro-death penalty Fraternal Order of Police (FOP), an organization representing some 35,000 police officers in the US that advocates the execution of Abu-Jamal and all other prisoners convicted of killing of police officers. The FOP, said the memo, has “announced a boycott of organizations and individuals who support Abu-Jamal,” and therefore anything done by the Congress to aid his cause would be “dangerously counter-productive to the abolition movement in the US.”

ThisCantBeHappening! this past week obtained a copy of that secret memorandum.

When we showed it to some other members of the boards of the organizations whose officers or individual board members had signed their names to it, responses ranged from consternation to outrage. Babbitt’s brother Manny was killed as a direct result of a corrupt law enforcement system in California that pressed for execution, even though it was clear from medical testimony that the elderly grandmother he allegedly killed actually died of shock when she discovered him breaking and entering her apartment. Left in the dark about the memo despite his being on the MVFHR board, Babbitt said, “My brother Manny’s last words to me were to always take the high road, and to me that means telling the truth and being open and transparent.” He added, regarding the content of the memo, “I think throwing Mumia under the bus is not the way to go in the abolitionist movement. You don’t make bargains with a wolf whose motive is to devour.”

Robert Meeropol, a son of Ethel and Julius Rosenberg, who were executed as spies in 1953, is also a member of the MVFHR board. Currently traveling on behalf of the organization in Asia, he said through a staffer in the US that he did not know about the memo, and added that he still stands “fully in support of a new trial for Mumia Abu-Jamal.”

Several calls seeking a comment from Cushing or Lowenstein remain unanswered, though a staffer at the MVFHR Boston office, Susanna Sheffer, said, “This is a complicated thing. You need to understand the depth and texture of this.”

Also surprised at the memo was actor Michael Farrell, president of the California abolitionist group Death Penalty Focus. Farrell, a long-time supporter of the call for a new trial for Abu-Jamal, said he had never seen the memo, though it was signed by a member of the DPF board, attorney Elizabeth Zitrin.

Other signers of the memo were Thomas H. “Speedy” Rice of the National Association of Criminal Defense Attorneys, Kritsin Houlé of the Texas Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty and Juan Matos de Juan of the Puerto Rican Bar Assn.

Bryan, a veteran death penalty defense lawyer who served 10 years on the board of the National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty--three of them as the organization’s chair--says, “In all my years as an activist opposing the death penalty, I have never heard of any individual or group in that fight singling out anyone as an exception to our campaign to abolish capital punishment. Everyone is treated equally. To single someone out and say they don’t count is chilling. Where do you draw the line? At people accused of killing cops? At people accused of killing old ladies? People accused of killing children? Where does it stop? It’s appalling!”

Heidi Beghosian, executive director of the National Lawyers Guild, an organization that has long been in the forefront of the campaign to end the death penalty in the US, and which was not advised of the plan to circulate the memo on behalf of the US Steering Committee to the World Coalition, despite the NLG's being a member of the WCADP, roundly condemned the secret effort to silence Abu-Jamal at the March event.

“Mumia Abu-Jamal’s case is emblematic of the inherent flaws in the capital punishment system,” she said. “That he is castigated by leaders in the abolitionist movement shows precisely what is wrong with the system—it is a system enslaved to the whims and personal biases of police, prosecutor, judge, and jury. While cultivating certain voices of law enforcement may assist in efforts to achieve abolition, it should not be at the expense of exposing a case that embodies some of the most reprehensible actions on the part of the police, the district attorney and the judiciary. The powerful FOP, and their heavy-handed efforts to vilify Abu-Jamal and his supporters, should not be the barometer by which abolitionist leaders gauge their strategic priorities. Members of the abolitionist movement should be working together and not further censoring and ostracizing a death row inmate.”

What makes the American abolitionists’ petulant and manipulative behavior as expressed in the secret memo and their cynical threat to withdraw from the Congress particularly outrageous is that Abu-Jamal’s arrest, trial and appeals process has been, as Beghosian notes, a textbook case of police and prosecutor corruption, malfeasance and abuse. From the beginning, even before his arrest, Abu-Jamal’s case was poisoned by a police lust for vengeance. Although he had been shot through the lung and liver by a bullet fired from Officer Faulkner’s service revolver, and was in danger of dying of internal bleeding that was filling his lungs with blood, Abu-Jamal was left lying in a police wagon for almost half an hour before he was finally delivered to a hospital emergency room, where hospital staff and at least one police officer on the scene observed him being kicked and punched by the officers delivering him.

During the jury selection process at the beginning of his trial, the presiding judge, Albert Sabo, who as a county sheriff’s deputy was an FOP member before he was made a judge, was overheard by a second judge and his court stenographer saying to his own court clerk, as he exited the courtroom through the jurdge’s robing room, “Yeah and I’m gonna help them fry that nigger!”

During the tortuous appeals process, both the state and federal courts have shamelessly bent their rules and violated precedents to deny Abu-Jamal the benefits of precedents that have been routinely accorded other appellants. Third Circuit Appeals Court Judge Thomas Ambro filed a stinging dissent to a decision by his two colleagues, who effectively created new law from the bench in rejecting Abu-Jamal’s well-founded Batson claim of racial bias by the prosecution during jury selection at his trail. Scarcely concealing his outrage, Judge Ambro wrote: "Our Court has previously reached the merits of Batson claims on habeas review in cases where the petitioner did not make a timely objection during jury selection--signaling that our Circuit does not have a federal contemporaneous objection rule--and I see no reason why we should not afford Abu-Jamal the courtesy of our precedents." He added, "Why we pick this case to depart from that reasoning I do not know."

Abu-Jamal himself, interviewed by phone last Friday from his cell at the super-max death row facility SCI-Greene in western Pennsylvania, blasted the attempt to silence him at the Congress, and to ostracize him from the American abolitionist movement. “They are really making deals with the devil,” he said, of claims that the US abolitionist movement was trying to gain the support of the FOP. “My instinct, being from Philadelphia, is that money was passed, though I have no evidence to prove it.” He added, “This secret action is a threat to the entire abolitionist movement. They are saying that because the opposition (to abolition) is so strong, we should not fight. If you have that attitude, why have an abolitionist movement at all?”

Abu-Jamal, whose death penalty was lifted by a federal judge in 2001, only to have the US Supreme Court remand that decision back to the Third Circuit, where it could be reimposed, and who continues, in no small part thanks to pressure from the Pennsylvania FOP, to be held in solitary confinement on death row, where he maintains his innocence, calls the signers of the memo “co-conspirators,” and says they are “naive” to believe they can win over the FOP by abandoning him to his fate.

“If the slavery abolitionists had taken this approach back in 1860,” he says, “and said okay let’s free the slaves, except those uppity ones with prices on their heads like Harriet Tubman and Frederick Douglass, we’d still have slavery today.” Abu-Jamal said it appeared that the abolitionist movement appeared to have lost its way, and said that it needed to be broadened to more closely reflect the population of the nation’s death rows. where nearly everyone is poor, and where 53% of the doomed inmates are non-white.

Source URL: http://www.thiscantbehappening.net/node/117

Read the whole SECRET MEMO: http://www.thiscantbehappening.net/node/116


 

Demo in Philly on the 4th of You Lie!!

AttachmentSize
Image icon mumiaflier_Demo_JULY4.jpg115.88 KB


Attorney General, Eric Holder will be in Philadelphia on July 4th.


DEMAND that Holder do a Civil Rights Investigation into Mumia's case!

 

*July 4th, 2010

 

*11:00am           


*between 5th & 6th and Market (no. side of Market)


*Bring banners, noisemakers, determination

 

*sponsored by the 4th of July Coalition: 215-476-8812

 

FREE MUMIA ABU-JAMAL!

 

MOVE message: CALL to Protect political prisoner Chuck Africa!

ONA MOVE!  I’M SENDING THIS EMAIL OUT TO INFORM YOU OF A VERY SERIOUS SITUATION HAPPENING WITH OUR BROTHER, CHUCK AFRICA. THIS FALLS ON THE HEELS OF US EXPOSING PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER COLUMNIST, MONICA YANT KINNEY AND ALL OF THE INFORMATION WE WERE ABLE TO PUT OUT DURING MEDIA INTERVIEWS MARKING TWENTY-FIVE YEARS SINCE THE BOMBING.

 

ALSO, WE JUST GOT A JUNE 21ST HEARING DATE* ON THE MURDER COMPLAINTS WE FILED AGAINST OFFICIALS FOR MURDERING OUR FAMILY IN 1985. [*UPDATE: The district attorney says he's not prepared to proceed on June 21st and requested a continuance.  The judge is Frank Palumbo of the common pleas court and he continued this hearing to July 8th at 9:00 am in room 504 of The Criminal Justice Center.]


THIS GOVERNMENT IS NOW TARGETING CHUCK  AND THE SIGNS ARE VERY CLEAR.  FIRST, CHUCK WAS RECENTLY TRANSFERRED FROM SCI-GRATERFORD WHERE HE WAS WITH OUR BROTHER MIKE AFRICA TO SCI-RETREAT,  A  PENNSYLVANIA PRISON WHERE THERE IS NO OTHER MOVE PERSON.  OFFICIALS AT SCI-RETREAT PUT CHUCK IN THE HOLE AND WE JUST RECEIVED A LETTER FROM HIM THAT HE WAS ATTACKED BY AN INMATE.   THAT’S HOW THIS SYSTEM OPERATES WHEN THEY TARGET SOMEBODY.  THEY ISOLATE YOU AND THEN DO ALL MANNER OF THINGS TO PUT PRESSURE ON YOU AND ULTIMATELY ARRANGE TO TAKE YOU OUT IF NOTHING ELSE BREAKS YOU.  THEY DID IT WITH LEONARD PELTIER, ONLY STANDING DEER, THE PERSON WHO WAS SUPPOSED TO ASSASSINATE LEONARD, COULDN’T DO IT AND HE EXPOSED THE CONSPIRACY.  CHUCK AND ALL OF THE MOVE 9 ARE SOON COMING UP FOR PAROLE AND WE KNOW THIS SYSTEM DOES NOT WANT ANY OF THE MOVE 9 OUT HERE ON THE STREET BUT THIS GOES BEYOND PAROLE, CHUCK’S LIFE IS AT STAKE HERE.  WE KNOW THAT THESE PEOPLE ARE CAPABLE OF DOING ANYTHING TO AVOID RELEASING INNOCENT MOVE PEOPLE FROM PRISON AND WE PUT NOTHING PASS THEM. 

 

WE’RE ASKING PEOPLE TO CONTACT SCI-RETREAT (570 735-8754) AND SPEAK TO SUPERINTENDENT  JAMES McGRADY ABOUT THIS SITUATION.  CHUCK SAYS THAT A KEY PLAYER IN THIS SET UP IS A GUARD NAMED LT.DUKES SO HIS NAME SHOULD BE MENTIONED.  CHUCK’S FULL NAME AND NUMBER IS CHARLES SIMS AFRICA #AM4975.

WE KNOW WE DON’T HAVE TO TELL YOU TO EXPECT OFFICIALS TO FEIGN IGNORANCE OF ANY PROBLEM AND PROBABLY DENY EVERYTHING BUT DON’T FALL FOR IT.  SOMETHING SERIOUS IS HAPPENING WITH CHUCK AND WE’RE NOT TAKING IT LIGHTLY AT ALL.  THANKS FOR YOUR SUPPORT.


RAMONA AFRICA FOR THE MOVE ORGANIZATION
[email sent June 13, 2010; updated June 16]

 

May 12, 2010 Activities To Mark 25 Years Since Govn't. Bombing and Murder of MOVE Family

AttachmentSize
PDF icon MOVE_flyer_3.pdf11.18 KB

ONA MOVE, Everybody!  Attached is a flyer about our May 12, 2010 activities to mark 25 years since the governmental bombing and murder of our MOVE family.  We're also urging you if you are a family member or friend of a victim of police terrorism/murder to join us.  If you know the family or friends of victims of police terrorism/murder, urge them to come out on the 12th.  If we truly want to stop police terrorism/murder than we have to work to do it.  Talking, complaining about it is not gonna do it.  ONA MOVE----Ramona

 

IT’S  TIME  TO  STOP  POLICE  TERRORISM!!!!!

This year marks 25 Years since the bombing of our Family!  At 9:00am MOVE is delivering MURDER charges to The Courts on May 12th, Charging officials with the Vicious Murder of 11 Innocent MOVE family members!  There will be a 10:00 am press conference at The AFSC, located at 15th & Cherry Sts., about the Murder Complaints. Immediately following the press conference, everyone will participate in a Honk Against Police Terror @ City Hall from 3pm to 5pm, following that is a Rally Demonstration March from City Hall to the African-American Museum for a 6:00 pm program , located at: 7th & Arch Sts., which includes, the screening of 2 Films On MOVE.  And joining the program will be Journalist Linn Washington, and Freedom Fighter Fred Hampton Jr..  On Sunday, May 16th, at 2:00pm there will be a Children’s Play performed by the MOVE children at The Rotunda, located at 40th& Walnut Sts., directly behind the Bridge Movie Theatre. 
For more INFO please contact:

MOVE
P.O. BOX 19709
PHILA., PA. 19143
onamovellja@aol.com
215 387-4107

 

DOWNLOAD of FBI's File on Mumia Abu-Jamal- Racism Is At the Core of an Unjust System ~message from London

For the first time in the history of Mumia's case, we now have electronic access to his much redacted 900 page FBI file which was all collected several years BEFORE there was any question of a crime or of killing a cop. It is a record of the targeting of Mumia since the time he was 14 years old.

DOWNLOAD HERE (CLICK HERE)

Link (html):   http://freemumia.com/mumia_file.zip

Racism is at the core of an unjust system -
do not let an innocent man be executed

MUMIA ABU JAMAL IS INNOCENT - A POLITICAL PRISONER

ABOLISH THE RACIST DEATH PENALTY - FREE ALL POLITICAL PRISONERS NOW

Date & Time: 7 PM - WEDNESDAY 28th APRIL 2010
Venue: KARIBU EDUCATION CENTRE, 7 GRESHAM ROAD, BRIXTON, LONDON SW9 7PH
(Third Right Street From Brixton Tube Station)

 

Organised by:
George Jackson Socialist League
Pan Afrikan Society Community Forum
Democracy and Class Struggle

Supported by:
Fight Racism Fight Imperialism
World Peoples Resistance Movement (Britain)
Global Afrikan Congress
Co-ordination Committee of the Revolutionary Communists of Britain.
Invited Speakers:
Colin Burgon MP
RMT (National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Worker)
Unison
Radha d'Souza - Law Lecturer
Fight Racism Fight Imperialism
Indian Workers Association GB
Partisans Defence Committee
Global Women's Strike
Amnesty International
CAMPACC & others

All are welcome - Admission free - donations welcome

Mumia Abu-Jamal is in danger of execution as the Supreme Court on Tuesday January 2010 threw out a ruling that had set aside the death sentence of Mumia Abu-Jamal the former Black Panther and internationally known political prisoner. We demand that Mumia Abu-Jamal who is innocent of all charges be released unconditionally and immediately. Mumia Abu-Jamal has been on Pennsylvania's death row now approaching 30 years after being falsely accused of killing a policeman. Mumia Abu-Jamal was a radio journalist known as the "Voice of the Voiceless". He exposed the racist and class oppression of the Afrikan and other oppressed working class. In 1985 he defended the Move family whose home had been bombed by a helicopter which killed 13 defenceless and innocent people including women and children. Mumia Abu-Jamal's case is symptomatic of the racism and class nature of the criminal
justice system both in US and the UK.

The criminal justice system in the UK is similarly brutal and racist. The so called War on Terror is in fact a War of Terror allowing people to be held without cause and for the Afrikan and Muslim community to be targeted.

The US prison population is now 2.5 million. While in Britain it is 100,000 and rising. As of now the brutal prison system in US and the UK is disproportionately filled with young Afrikan men. Robert Bryan lawyer for Mumia Abu-Jamal says people continue to use the false term "reinstating the death penalty" concerning Mumia. He has always been under a death sentence.

When there has been a victory, the prosecution has gone to a higher court, thereby suspending the effect. In 2008 the Court of Appeals ruled reversed the death judgement. The State petitioned the Supreme Court, so the reversal of the death penalty never took effect. What is clear today is that Mumia Abu-Jamal is in imminent danger and the way has been cleared for his execution by the decision on January 19th 2010. There are approximately 2.5
Mjillion prisoners in the US gulag with thousands on death row approximately 50 % are Afrikans.

 

Mumia Abu-Jamal's 56th Birthday, April 24th: FREEDOM FOR MUMIA!!

A message to all friends of Mumia Abu-Jamal from Yuri Kochiyama

Mumia’s birthday is April 24 and we would like to celebrate a gigantic Freedom Birthday Remembrance for Mumia Abu-Jamal.

Please join Pam and Ramona Africa and all who love and admire Mumia by avalanching him through the month of April with Freedom Birthday wishes. And, to those who can afford to, please send a few dollars through postal money orders. This would be helpful when he is released.

Mail cards to: Mumia Abu-Jamal, AM 8335, SCI Greene, 175 Progress Dr., Waynesburg, PA 15370-8090.

Tell your family members, friends, fellow workers, neighbors, classmates etc. Also, notify progressive radio stations, newspapers and organizations. Please do so immediately.

Yuri Kochiyama, shown here with POCC Chairman Fred Hampton Jr. as they speak to the crowd at the Black New World in West Oakland in 2008, was interned during World War II with other Japanese Americans and has been fighting for freedom ever since. In 1960, living with her husband and children in Harlem, she met Malcolm X and worked closely with him until his death. She was present when he was assassinated and cradled his head in her lap as he lay dying. Now a resident of Oakland, her passion and courage burn as brightly as ever. “The Revolutionary Life of Yuri Kochiyama, Heartbeat of Struggle,” by Diane C. Fujino was released in 2005. – Photo: Minister of Information JR

 

Remember what Mumia has endured at the hands of the U.S. government and the Pennsylvania criminal justice system. Mumia has already done 32 years and is still on death row because of prosecutorial misconduct. Yet he is innocent! Act now before it is too late.

Don’t let Mumia become another victim of a government’s destructive history. Mumia’s life is in peril and must be saved. He is needed to teach us how to fight for a better world for all. If ever Mumia was needed, it is now!

Join us in celebrating Mumia’s birthday and let it be a celebration for Mumia’s freedom!

Remember we need him more than he needs us. We need him, not only for today, but for all the tomorrows coming. Join us. Write to Mumia now.

for Labor Action to Free Mumia Abu-Jamal, Feb 2010

Top US Court Sends Mumia Abu-Jamal Closer to Execution
 Mumia Abu-Jamal is an innocent man on death row.  In two recent decisions, the US Supreme Court has ignored both evidence of his innocence and it's own precedents to deny Mumia's appeal and bring him closer to execution.  In this statement, the Labor Action Committee To Free Mumia Abu-Jamal lays bare the truth behind these actions, and proposes a course of workers' and mass action to free Mumia.

Cops, Courts and Politicians To Mumia:
We Will Kill You, and the Law Be Damned!

For Labor Action To Free Mumia!

Mumia Abu-Jamal is a former Black Panther, award winning journalist, behind-bars commentator on critical social issues--and an innocent man on death row.  In April 2009, after more than two decades of court rulings that ignored mounting evidence of his innocence, the Supreme Court upheld his 1982 frame-up conviction without comment.  Then, this January, the Court moved closer to reinstating his death sentence--which had been put on hold by lower court rulings. 

The US Supreme Court has shown it will do anything necessary to support the rule of their big corporate bosses, as seen most recently in the Citizens United ruling, which threw out the ban on independent corporate spending during an election.  Years of legislation was undone in a single blow, to further tighten the death grip of big money over politics in the US.  But the courts also obey the commands of their armed thugs in the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP), and politicians that support them, even if it means walking all over their own legal precedents and trampling on the most basic principles of justice.

Supreme Court “Vacates” the Stay of Mumia’s Death Sentence

On January 19th the Supreme Court "vacated" the Third Circuit (federal appellate) ruling, which--after upholding Mumia's conviction--said that Mumia's death sentence had been imposed under faulty instructions to the jury.  The Third Circuit had instructed Pennsylvania state courts that under Mills v Maryland--a 1988 Supreme Court precedent--Mumia's sentence should be decided again in a new sentencing hearing, or (if no such hearing was held) converted to a life sentence without the possibility of parole.  In Mills, the Supreme Court had struck down a Maryland statute which said that juries in capital cases must be unanimous on any aggravating or mitigating factor when deciding the sentence.  The Mills ruling said that while aggravating factors need be unanimous, factors that mitigate against imposing death required a simple majority only.  The Third Circuit said Mills applied in Mumia's case, and so required reconsideration of the sentence.

But now, the Supreme Court has ordered the Third Circuit to reconsider this decision.  They did so in light of their recent ruling on another case, Smith v Spisak.  Having summarily tossed out Mumia's appeal against his conviction last year, the Court waited until now, after its Spisak ruling, to take up the cross-appeal by the Philadelphia DA, seeking to reinstate Mumia's death sentence.  It was obvious that the Court planned to use its Spisak ruling against Mumia, and now it has.  The clear implication was that the Third Circuit had just lost its reason (the Mills precedent) for setting aside Mumia's death sentence:

"Of the cases summarily decided [January 19th], one is especially noteworthy: the Court has granted the petition in Beard v. Abu-Jamal (08-652), vacating and remanding to the Third Circuit to consider in light of Smith v. Spisak."  (http://www.scotusblog.com/)         

Smith v Spisak stemmed from a case in Ohio of an avowed neo-Nazi, who confessed in court to murdering five people for racist reasons.  Spisak's death sentence had been set aside, based on faulty jury instructions under the Mills precedent, similar to Mumia's, in two lower court rulings.  The Supreme Court unanimously reversed these, and said Spisak should be executed.   The Mills ruling had the effect of inhibiting, somewhat, the rush to execute. But in its current ruling in Spisak, the Court said that Mills may not apply in any given state, based on differing jury-instruction forms which may or may not be confusing to jurors on the issue of mitigating factors.  Thus the Court watered down what was considered to be a binding national precedent, with language allowing different states to make their own interpretations--a "states rights" position.

A Long-Established Tactic of Deception

But that's just the beginning.  It is important to see through the haze of legal gibberish here.  In saying that Mills didn't apply in the Spisak case, the Supreme Court allowed itself to say, only days later, that Mills probably didn't apply to the politically more important case of Mumia Abu-Jamal either.  The Court thus weakened its own precedent in order to reinforce and strengthen the death penalty generally. And at the same time, it used the case of a confessed racist murderer to set back the struggle of a world-renowned, innocent and anti-racist death-row prisoner--Mumia Abu-Jamal--a prisoner whom the FOP and US political establishment is falling all over itself to execute.

Taking precedent-breaking legal measures against hard right-wing targets in order to use them against the working-class left, is a long-established tactic of a ruling class which seeks above all to preserve its own power.  But in the case of Mumia Abu-Jamal particularly, breaking legal precedent in order to hasten his execution is the norm.  In making its flat-out rejection of Mumia’s appeal last April, the Supreme Court had to knowingly violate its own well-established precedent in Batson v Kentucky--the 1986 ruling which said that purging a jury on the basis of race was unconstitutional.  One of the best-known legal precedents in modern US history, Batson required that convictions be thrown out for even one incident of racially-based juror exclusion.  And, it was to be applied retroactively.  In Mumia’s 1982 trial, the prosecutor used at least ten out of 15 peremptory challenges to exclude blacks for reasons that were not applied to prospective white jurors.

Precedent? Hell, No! Courts Do What They Want

Many other precedents have been broken as well by appellate courts, which were then upheld by the Supreme Court.  The Third Circuit reversed a well-established rule preventing prosecutors from undermining the principle of "innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt" in their summations to the jury.  In Mumia's case, the prosecutor said that Mumia would go free immediately if acquitted, but would get "appeal after appeal" if convicted, thus saying to the jury that if in doubt they should convict, not acquit.  Having tossed this practice in an earlier case involving the same prosecutor, they upheld it in Mumia's case, and this in turn was upheld by the Supreme Court.  (In yet another case, the Third Circuit later restored the earlier precedent on this issue.)

Still more fundamental is the question of innocence itself.  In order to convict and uphold Mumia's conviction the prosecution manufactured false confessions, planted evidence, and threatened "witnesses" into saying they saw what they didn't see.  All of these illegal tricks were used against Mumia, yet no court has overturned the conviction because of them.  Meanwhile, the real evidence--including witnesses who saw the real killer or killers run away, and a witness (William Singletary) who said Mumia didn't shoot anybody but who was not called to testify--should haven proven Mumia's innocence from the start.  But more evidence of innocence has come in since the trial, including witness recantations, another man (Arnold Beverly) who confessed, and photos of the crime scene that show that police lied.  Yet very little of this has ever been heard in court, and none of it has been used to throw out this blatantly obvious frame-up.

"Innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt" is perhaps the most fundamental of all legal precedents, predating the US legal system itself.  The whim of the feudal lord to execute whom he pleased, has (supposedly) been replaced in bourgeois society by the rule of law.  And if the state has failed to really prove guilt or has ignored new evidence of innocence, but is still holding the prisoner, there is the ancient precedent of habeas corpus, under which the state must explain why it is still holding the person.

“Innocence Is No Defense”!

But in the US, where the term "lynch-law" entered the language, and where the legal system is based largely on the law of the slave-holders, both of these fundamental principles have been thoroughly undermined.  In the Supreme Court's Herrera v Collins decision, and in the 1996 Anti-Terrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act (ATEDPA) signed by Democratic President Bill Clinton, US legal precedent makes it nearly impossible to overturn a fraudulent conviction on appeal.  The "facts" of the case as established in state courts must now be accepted in federal appeals courts regardless of merit, and the "timeliness" of appeal filings must be observed, thus gutting the right of habeas corpus.  For US courts, if you're outside these narrow boundaries, and especially if you're targeted as an enemy of the state the way Mumia is, innocence is no defense! 

A small handful of innocents on death row have been released for factors such as false confessions, police corruption of witnesses, ineffective assistance of counsel, or the confession of someone else to the crime.  And more recently, DNA evidence has provided relief to some frame-up victims, although even this can be distorted by police, or studiously overlooked by the courts (see the Kevin Cooper case for instance. www.savekevincooper.org).  In one state out of 50 (Illinois), death sentences were systematically tossed when half of death row inmates were found to be innocent.  The death penalty is losing losing favor in the polls as more and more people become aware of its inherent brutality, and the fact that innocent people have been executed (Camron Todd Willingham in Texas is a recent example).  But the Supreme Court is still breaking precedent to set up an innocent man, Mumia Abu-Jamal, for execution, as well as to reinforce the death penalty in general.  Why?

The case of Mumia Abu-Jamal shows that the much-heralded "rule of law" in this so-called democracy is a fraud from beginning to end.  For nearly half a century, Mumia has been hounded by the state's forces of "law and order." First targeted when he was 15 under the FBI's counter-intelligence program (COINTELPRO) for his political work as an activist exposing police racism and brutality, Mumia was framed on the spot in December of 1981 for killing a police officer who was probably talking to the Justice Department about the corruption of inner-city cops in his district.  A man named Arnold Beverly later confessed that he was hired by corrupt cops to kill the officer, Daniel Faulkner, because Faulkner had been "interfering" with police pay-offs in downtown Philadelphia.  Despite a federal prosecution aimed against police corruption, and despite the fact that it was some of the same corrupt cops who framed Mumia for the killing, the Justice Department never lifted a finger to save Mumia.


It’s the System That’s Guilty, Not Mumia Abu-Jamal

The twists and turns of the criminal justice system show beyond a reasonable doubt: it's the system that's guilty, not Mumia Abu-Jamal.  Since his horrendously unfair trial before a racist judge (who was overheard to say privately that he was going to "help fry the n____r"), Mumia has been relentlessly pursued by a drum-beat campaign to execute him, spearheaded by the Fraternal Order of Police, many of whom are complicit in his frame-up, and possibly also in the Faulkner killing itself!

But this conspiracy of "legal" murder doesn't stop with the cops; it reaches all the way up the political ladder to the very top, where it continues unabated today.  This includes Congress, which, under prompting from the FOP, pressured National Public Radio (NPR) to cancel a planned series of broadcasts by Mumia called "Live From Death Row" in 1994.  Twelve years later, again under FOP pressure, Congress took the extraordinary step of condemning a city in France for naming a street after Mumia.  By a vote of 368 to 31, Congress, including many prominent Democrats in the majority, demanded a reversal of the street-naming, defended all police world-wide, and declared Mumia a murderer. 

Democratic and Republican officials in Pennsylvania are up to their eyeballs with the frame-up of Mumia, the cover-up, and the conspiracy to execute this innocent man.  Since Mumia's trial, every candidate for Philadelphia district attorney has sworn to pursue death for Mumia, including Seth Williams, the current DA and the first black man to hold the office.  Officials under then-Governor Tom Ridge, later named chief of Homeland Security by George W Bush, conducted a highly illegal surveillance (opening and reading) of Mumia's mail from his lawyer in 1995, in which they learned of an appeal Mumia's lawyers were planning.  This information allowed Ridge, who had pledged to execute Jamal in his election campaign the year before, to try to sabotage the defense by preemptively signing a death warrant against Mumia just before the appeal filing. This trumped up deadline allowed the presiding judge--who was the same racist, Albert Sabo, that presided over the original trial--to ramrod and rig the proceedings.

Obama’s Political Bandwagon of Death For Mumia 

The Democratic Party establishment, both in Pennsylvania and nationally, is committed to the same "legal" murder of Mumia.  The current governor, Ed Rendell, who was district attorney at the time of Mumia's trial and oversaw the frame-up, is on board with this on-going conspiracy.  He was central to Obama's carrying of Pennsylvania in the 2008 election.  For its part, the Fraternal Order of Police wasn't taking any chances with presidential candidates.  The FOP interviewed both Obama and McCain, and included a question about Mumia, referring to the street-naming by the Paris suburb of St. Denis, France. "I deplore acts to harm or kill our nation's police officers," replied Obama, "and oppose efforts to glorify those who commit such acts." 

Not to be left out, certain media pundits have weighed in against Mumia, helping those in the ruling circles to be sure about where their loyalties needed to be.  Right wing Philadelphia talk show host Michael Smerconish, the co-author (with Faulkner's wife) of a lying diatribe called "Murdered By Mumia" (Lyons Press 2008), also weighed in with an interview of Obama during the campaign.  When Smerconish asked him about Mumia, Obama said he didn't know much about the case, but added, "if somebody killed a police officer, they deserve the death penalty, or life in prison."  On this basis, the Republican Smerconish backed Obama in the campaign, which helped to put Obama over the top in Pennsylvania.

Smerconish & Co. are starting to break through internationally as well. Mumia Abu-Jamal has long had a strong following around the world, where in most countries, the particular loyalties of the US ruling class to its police force don't apply.  Support for Mumia has come from the European Parliament, Amnesty International, the city of Paris (which gave Mumia an honorary citizenship), and luminaries such as Nelson Mandela.  Mumia supporters are particularly strong in France and Germany.  But the FOP, and pundits such as Smerconish, have recently scored with an anti-Mumia hit piece based largely on the lies in "Murdered By Mumia," in der Spiegel, a major German weekly.

Eric Holder… and the Fraternal Order of Police

Although it supported McCain in the election, the Fraternal Order of Police backed the nomination of Eric Holder for attorney general.  Holder subsequently spoke to an FOP "memorial" gathering, where he threatened "all those out there who would do harm to police officers... We are coming to get you," he continued, "you will be arrested, you will be prosecuted, and you will be sentenced to the full extent of the law."  This ominous warning made the intentions of the Obama administration clear.  As it took office at the head of the world's preeminent imperialist power, the new administration reassured the US ruling circles that despite being the first black president, Obama was not about to change 40 years of murderous wrongs committed against revolutionary activists such as the Black Panthers, and spokesmen such as Mumia Abu-Jamal.

In a commentary in August of 2008, anticipating the possible election of the first black president of the US, Mumia related the impending Obama victory to the experience with Carl Stokes, who was elected mayor of Cleveland in 1967.  As a harbinger of "the emergence of black political power in major American cities," Stokes' election prompted many Blacks to see "the beginning of an age of freedom for our people," said Mumia.  However, "From the 1960s to now, we most certainly have been disabused of that notion," he continued.  Among other disappointments, Stokes hired a former US Army lieutenant general as "a kind of super police chief."  This Vietnam-war honcho ordered 30,000 rounds of illegal hollow point bullets to go after the Cleveland Black Panther Party, and one of its support organizations. 

“Black Faces In High Places Does Not Freedom Make”

"Just because [Stokes] was a Black mayor," said Mumia, "didn't mean he wasn't dedicated to destroying a Black organization.  Indeed, in times of Black uprising and mass discontent, Black mayors seem the perfect instrument of repression, for they dispel charges of racism... But Black faces in high places," concluded Mumia, "does not freedom make."   ("The Perils of Black Political Power," Aug 6th 2008).

We should also remember the experience with Wilson Goode, a black Democratic mayor of Philadelphia, who presided over the firebombing of the home of MOVE, the black community group which Mumia supports, in 1985.  In "The Perils of Black Political Power," Mumia touched on a central truth: power in a society ruled by an economic elite, though racist to its core, will not be altered by replacing a few white individuals with black ones, even at the very top of the power structure. 

Only by seeing the true nature of the enemy can we move forward.  Mumia's case shows conclusively that a ruling-class power structure, not "the law," is pulling the strings.  It's true that Mumia is up against a very big obstacle indeed: the system has targeted him as one of its highest profile enemies.  In this, Mumia shares the stage with Leonard Peltier, an innocent activist with the American Indian Movement, who remains jailed for life because of a well-organized FBI vendetta against him.  (He also shares this stage with earlier victims of the system such as Sacco and Vanzetti--frame-up victims of the “red scare” of the 1920’s.)  In his last day in office, President Bill Clinton refused to pardon Leonard Peltier after armed FBI agents mobilized in the streets in New York to oppose it.  And it was the FBI's COINTELPRO program that led to the police killings of 38 Black Panthers in virtually scripted shoot-outs!

“Justice” System v Class Struggle

While we support pursuing all available legal avenues to defend Mumia in court, and we support and urge that donations be made to Mumia's legal defense fund, we find that there is no point in petitioning corrupt authorities such as Obama and the US Justice Department to correct wrongs which they themselves are either responsible for, or firmly committed to.  Pleading with such a system to have a change of heart can only sow illusions, and undermine Mumia's defense.  The petitions demand nothing, they only ask for an internal review of the system, by the system.  These criminals--and they are criminals--are not about to turn around now and say, "Oops, sorry, we violated civil rights."  They are committed to their side, and so should we be to ours.

In its effort to try to free Mumia, the Labor Action Committee To Free Mumia Abu-Jamal (LAC) recognized "that relief for Mumia cannot be expected from the biased and racist so-called 'justice' system in this country;" and we dedicated ourselves to, "educating workers about Jamal's case, and to promoting a class-struggle movement, including strikes and other job actions wherever possible, to Free Mumia Abu-Jamal!" (LAC founding statement, January 1999). Several workers actions have taken place since that statement was made, including a West Coast port shutdown to free Mumia, conducted by longshore workers in the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) in April 1999.  Oakland teachers conducted an unauthorized teach-in on Mumia and the death penalty, also in 1999; and Brazilian teachers in Rio de Janeiro have conducted many work actions to free Mumia, from 1999 through to 2008.

“An Injury To One Is An Injury To All!  Free Mumia Abu-Jamal!”

We have no quarrel with the millions of well-meaning individuals around the world who have already signed the two petitions (one to the US Justice Department under Holder, and another to Obama).  The problem is rather one of leadership.  Rather than working within a power structure that's dead set against us, let's ask how Mumia supporters can be mobilized to take positive action aimed against the system that's trying to kill Mumia.  Labor and minorities share a common history of being victimized by the criminal justice system in this country,  and both have long been aware of police repression and the unequal use of the death penalty against minorities and the poor.

When longshore workers shut down West Coast ports and marched through San Francisco streets in 1999, they chanted, "An injury to one is an injury to all!  Free Mumia Abu-Jamal," thereby uniting the black freedom struggle and the workers movement in one powerful action.  We know that if freedom is to be won for Mumia, a massive movement of working people must be mobilized.  The system that victimizes innocent revolutionaries like Mumia is the same system that threatens all of us with police brutality, as well as oppression, exploitation and financial meltdown.  This system can be brought to a halt through mass actions that mobilize the power of labor.  But we must start out in that direction.  Educate, agitate, organize and demonstrate.  Build workers actions to free Mumia!

-The Labor Action Committee To Free Mumia Abu-Jamal, February 2010

For more information, view our web site at: www.laboractionmumia.org
See the article, "Mumia Abu-Jamal and the Labor Movement," at http://www.laboractionmumia.org/laborsfight1.html

And see, "What You Can Do Now," at http://www.laboractionmumia.org/whatyoucandonow.html

 

Leonard Peltier Solidarity Statement with Mumia Abu-Jamal

February 13, 2010
Greetings brothers and sisters, and thank you for attending this event to listen, learn, teach, and organize. I am Leonard Peltier, a proud Lakota and Anishinabe American Indian activist, organizer, and patriot. I am likewise, unfortunately, a fellow political prisoner in this 'land of the free.'

I, along with my family, my supporters, and American Indians everywhere, know full well what the justice system of the United States can mean to the brown man, the black man, and any man or woman who dares to think or talk truth to power.

That we have been made targets in our own country should outrage every single man and woman everywhere, no matter the color, background or political leaning. That this country continues the barbaric practices of executions should be opposed by all people of conscience.

Whether or not you approve of capital punishment is irrelevant as long as minorities are executed with alarming disparities. Whether you approve or not is of secondary concern when people like Mumia Abu Jamal, myself and many others are convicted and sentenced to die with evidence that would exonerate most any white man. As such, every single progressive organization should oppose the death penalty as we now know it.

This has not been a case of justice or the law, it has been politics, racism, and control, and we should confront these issues long before we decide who to execute. As long as we have these inequities in our midst, we will continue to convict and execute innocents. Execute - let's call it what it really is - state sanctioned murder! Why does America allow this brand of 'justice' to exist?

That is a question that must haunt the soul of every true American patriot. For as long as it does, America can never be the bastion of freedom it has claimed to be, the light in the darkness it wants to be, nor the high ground of morality it hopes to be.

Pay attention to the names this government uses when it is opposed. The American government has called other countries 'evil empire' and 'axis of evil.' The rest of the world hears this and scoffs!

Why? Because they see this country convicting, imprisoning, and executing innocent minorities and political liabilities while claiming to be a free society - because they see corporate personhood allowing the rape of the Earth and desecration of the sacred - because they see this country waging illegal war while claiming to love peace - and because they see this country propping up murderous dictators while giving lip service to human rights. The rest of the world sees all of this and wonders, is not America the real evil empire?

I, like Mumia, have been called a terrorist by my own government. Well, I never knew a terrorist who advocated the rule of law as we have. Some people need to find a new dictionary!

There may be other parts of the world which are breeding grounds for terrorism, but this government makes sure they have fertile ground to harvest. We are not the terrorists! I love my country. Progressive thinking people love this country. It is thusly our patriotic duty to respond to such government with righteous indignation! It is only when we allow a corrupt government to corrupt our very minds that a patriot becomes a terrorist!

As long as you are willing to work for justice, all political prisoners can still hope for freedom. Real power starts from the bottom and goes up, not the other way around. Free Mumia!

In solidarity,

Leonard Peltier

URGENT: Sign these PETITIONS for MUMIA ABU-JAMAL

SIGN PETITIONS TO: President Obama and Attorney General Holder

 

To Obama:  (in many languages)  Mumia Abu-Jamal and The Global Abolition of the Death Penalty   http://www.petitiononline.com/Mumialaw/petition.html

To Attorney General Holder: demanding that he immediately initiate a civil rights investigation addressing a 27-year history of prosecutorial and judicial violations of Mumia Abu-Jamal's constitutional and international rights.
http://freemumia.com/civilrights.html

 

Please don't hesitate.  Only takes a minute! Sign the petitions!  Pass these links on!!

Read recent interview with Pam Africa at SF Bay View:  http://www.sfbayview.com/2010/pam-africa-on-the-supreme-court-ruling-against-mumia/

 

Free Mumia NOW! Abolish the Racist Death Penalty

Partisan Defense Committee Statement                        24 January 2010

Mumia Is Innocent—Free Him Now!

Supreme Court of Death Rules Against Mumia Abu-Jamal

Abolish the Racist Death Penalty!

On January 19, the U.S. Supreme Court took a clear step toward the legal lynching of Mumia Abu-Jamal. The Court vacated a 2001 decision by federal district court judge William Yohn overturning Mumia’s death sentence. Yohn’s decision had been previously upheld by the U.S. Third Circuit Court of Appeals. The new ruling by the Supreme Court underscores our insistence that fighters for Mumia’s freedom must place no faith in the courts, which, at every level, have colluded with the police and prosecutors to see through the execution of this innocent man.

Mumia was targeted by the police and FBI in his teenage years as a Black Panther leader and later as a journalist and MOVE supporter renowned for his searing exposés of cop brutality and racist oppression. In a blatantly racist and political frame-up, Mumia was railroaded to death row in 1982 on false charges of killing Philadelphia police officer Daniel Faulkner. Without a shred of actual evidence against him, he was convicted on the basis of phony ballistics and other manufactured “evidence,” a “confession” concocted by cops and prosecutors, massive police intimidation of witnesses and racist jury rigging. His trial was overseen by “hanging judge” Albert Sabo, who was overheard saying he would help the prosecution “fry the n----r.” To secure the death sentence, prosecutors pointed to political statements issued by Mumia as a 16-year-old Panther.

Since his trial, the courts have repeatedly tossed aside massive evidence of Mumia’s innocence, not least the confession of Arnold Beverly that he, not Mumia, shot and killed Faulkner. Yet Mumia remains unbowed, speaking out for the oppressed and the impoverished through his death row commentaries. The Partisan Defense Committee—a class-struggle, non-sectarian legal and social defense organization associated with the Spartacist League/U.S.—calls on trade unionists, death penalty abolitionists and all opponents of racist injustice to make their voices heard in demanding: Free Mumia now! Abolish the racist death penalty!

The Supreme Court moved against Mumia with cold calculation. Last April, it turned down Mumia’s petition to overturn his frame-up conviction. At the same time, the Court held in abeyance the arguments of Pennsylvania prosecutors to reinstate his death sentence, which had been overturned by Yohn on the grounds that Mumia’s trial jury had been given faulty sentencing instructions. The Supreme Court waited to rule against Mumia until after it reinstated the death sentence for Ohio neo-Nazi Frank Spisak, which had been overturned on similar grounds of faulty jury instructions. In effect, the high court gave the Third Circuit their marching orders to uphold Mumia’s death sentence. Alternatively, the Third Circuit could send the case back to Yohn for a hearing to consider other still-pending claims by Mumia or, less likely, reaffirm its prior decision.

The Supreme Court cynically tied together the Spisak and Mumia cases, not despite but because of their glaring differences. Spisak is a sociopath who admitted to killing his victims and made no secret of his admiration for Adolph Hitler. Mumia has always maintained his innocence and won acclaim as the “voice of the voiceless” for his powerful commentaries. The Court is consciously manipulating abhorrence of the fascist Spisak’s crimes to set a precedent for the legal murder of Mumia, a man whose “crime” was to stand up to the racist capitalist rulers. Noting how his case differed from Spisak’s, Mumia aptly told Free Speech Radio News, “The law is the tool of those in power, so how they use it doesn’t depend on the law; it depends on power.” The Supreme Court ruling will touch off new rounds of perhaps lengthy legal proceedings. But even if Mumia wins his battle against execution, the “alternative” offered by the courts is a life sentence with no possibility of parole, which, as Mumia noted in one of his prison writings, “is merely slow death.”

The court’s linking of the two cases highlights yet again how the fight for Mumia’s freedom is inseparable from the struggle to abolish the death penalty. The PDC opposes the death penalty on principle and everywhere—for the guilty as well as for the innocent. We do not accord any state the right to determine who lives and who dies.

Capital punishment is a barbaric relic of ancient codes of justice and, in the U.S., of chattel slavery. Where in medieval times those who ran afoul of Crown and Church were put to the rack or burned at the stake, today’s representatives of bourgeois “civilization” debate which combination of lethal drugs to administer to writhing prisoners strapped to death gurneys. In threatening such treatment for Mumia, the courts hark back to when black slaves could be tortured and put to death for hitting a white man in self-defense or for any other act deemed a challenge to the slaveholders. The hugely disproportionate number of black people on America’s death rows is a testament to the racist subjugation of the black population, which is fundamental to the maintenance of American capitalism. And while judges in their oak-paneled chambers decree the legal murder of the poor, minorities and working people, the police carry out the same sentence on a far greater scale as they gun down ghetto and barrio youth in the streets.

The death penalty stands at the apex of the machinery of state repression used by the tiny class of capitalist exploiters against the masses they exploit and oppress. The “justice” system threatens Mumia with the ultimate state sanction that it used against earlier militants deemed to be threats to capitalist “order”—the Haymarket Martyrs (1877), IWW militant Joe Hill (1915) and anarchist workers Sacco and Vanzetti (1927), to name a few. The state vendetta against Mumia began as part of the FBI’s COINTELPRO campaign to wipe out the Black Panther Party, in which some 38 Panthers were killed and hundreds of others framed up and railroaded to prison. The government’s intent was made clear in 1968 by FBI director J. Edgar Hoover, who warned: “The Negro youth and moderate[s] must be made to understand that if they succumb to revolutionary teachings, they will be dead revolutionaries.”

Mumia’s cause has been and must continue to be a focal point of the fight for abolition of the racist death penalty. Popular support for capital punishment has fallen steadily in recent years, due not least to the many cases where DNA evidence has exonerated death row prisoners. Even the conservative American Law Institute, whose death penalty guidelines were cited by the Supreme Court when it ended a brief moratorium on executions in 1976, has decided to get out of this gruesome business as ever more exposures of American injustice come to light. The Supreme Court, however, is not in the least deterred from its push to execute the innocent. Some six weeks before ruling against Mumia, the Court refused to consider the appeal of black California death row inmate Kevin Cooper despite evidence of his innocence and of a massive police frame-up. Free Kevin Cooper!

From the time we first took up Mumia’s cause more than 20 years ago, the PDC has supported the use of every possible legal avenue available to Mumia while having no illusions in the courts or any other agency of the capitalist state. Our fight has centered on the struggle to mobilize the multiracial working class in the U.S. and working people internationally, based on the fact that the proletariat is the one force in this society with the social power to effectively challenge the capitalist rulers. When Mumia faced a death warrant in the summer of 1995, worldwide protests that included trade unions representing hundreds of thousands of workers played a crucial role in staying the executioner’s hand.

Counterposed to this class-struggle strategy is the policy of many organizations--Socialist Action, the Workers World Party, the Concerned Family and Friends of Mumia Abu-Jamal and others--which long centered their protests on the demand for a new, fair trial for Mumia. With the judicial appeals in which they put their faith nearly exhausted, their plea that the capitalist state deliver justice now comes in the form of petitions to Attorney General Eric Holder to conduct a civil rights investigation into Mumia’s frame-up trial and to President Barack Obama to “speak out against the death penalty for Mumia Abu-Jamal.”

These hat-in-hand appeals to America’s top cop and imperialist Commander-in-Chief are a savage indictment of the liberal belief in the “democracy” of capitalist class rule. Holder’s Justice Department recently threw leftist attorney Lynne Stewart in prison and threatened to extend her sentence by 28 more years for staunchly defending her client, who was accused of terrorist activities. Obama openly announced his support for the death penalty in his run for the White House, including in an interview with right-wing journalist Michael Smerconish, one of the voices calling loudest for Mumia’s execution.

After eight years of the despised Bush regime, Obama took office to give a facelift to bloodsoaked U.S. imperialism. Reinforcing illusions that Obama represents “change,” the reformist left tails after the trade-union bureaucracy, whose program of seeking “friends” in the parties and state agencies of the capitalist class enemy has gravely dissipated labor’s fighting capacity. Meanwhile, the U.S. military still rains death on Iraq and Afghanistan, inmates from America’s vast prison complex to the military’s Bagram and Guantánamo Bay dungeons continue to be brutalized and tortured, and bankers get billion-dollar bailouts while workers lose their jobs and homes.

The fight to free Mumia, as with all struggles against social oppression and deprivation, can go forward based only on a clear understanding of the class forces involved. Make no mistake: In baying for Mumia’s blood, the forces of bourgeois “law and order” are sending a message to all who would fight against exploitation, oppression and imperialist war that they, too, are in the sights of the state. Any real fight for Mumia’s freedom must be based on a class-struggle opposition to the capitalist rulers, who have entombed this innocent man for more than half his life. Free Mumia now!

-- 24 January 2010

 


Jan 15, 2009: FREE MUMIA ABU-JAMAL

AttachmentSize
PDF icon Mumia update_Jan_09.pdf107.99 KB

Wherever you are!  Please mobilize rallies, media, strikes, shut downs, walk outs, etc to save Mumia Abu Jamal. Get the media to notice. If you've never spread the word before, spread it NOW!!  Pass this email on to all of your lists.  AT LEAST SIGN THE PETITIONS!!  Listen to Mumia's radio commentaries from Death Row, and fight for his life!!  There are many links at the bottom of this message.

MOBILIZE AND FIGHT TO SAVE MUMIA’S LIFE!!!

As of January 11, 2010 United States political prisoner Mumia Abu-Jamal is the closest to death he has ever been. In 1981, Mr. Abu-Jamal, a former Black Panther as a teenager and a noted radio journalist, was shot by police, arrested and then charged with allegedly killing a Pennsylvania police officer. He was convicted after a flawed trial and sentenced to death by a jury from which the prosecution had systematically excluded Black people. The judge, notorious for sentencing people to death in great numbers, gave instructions to the jury that have been found to be invalid and incorrect. Although the courts have refused to allow new evidence demonstrating Mumia’s innocence and disproving Police allegations against him, he won an appeal which set aside his death sentence and required a new sentencing phase trial hearing.


The Supreme Court is now set to rule on an appeal by Pennsylvania prosecutors of that lower court ruling. They will either reinstate his death sentence, or uphold the lower court in granting him a new sentencing trial. If the death penalty verdict is upheld, Mumia Abu-Jamal could be dead within 48 hours. For up to date information concerning the ruling visit www.breakthechains.info.

                                ***
One group working to Free Mumia in California: In Los Angeles, a group called Mumia: Alive and Free! is working towards getting Mumia Abu-Jamal a new sentencing trial. However, it is our ultimate goal to have this innocent man be free.

We call for a massive gathering outside of the Downtown Los Angeles Federal Building, 200 N. Los Angeles St. (corner Temple) at 5:00 pm, the day after the Supreme Court ruling. We urge cities throughout the country and the world to act in solidarity for Mumia in any way imaginable.
                                 ***

Please distribute flyers far and wide. Encourage everyone you know to do something to spread the word about Mumia’s case, no matter what they can do. Sign the petition to save his life
(http://www.iacenter.org/mumiapetition/). Pressure local media outlets. Initiate public rallies. Engage students, neighbors and co-workers in your area or members of your faith group. If we do not act, every single one of us will share responsibility for his death.

Since Mumia Abu-Jamal was sentenced to death, his life has been in the lethal grip of the United States government. Becoming a symbol of resistance to injustice for political movements throughout the world, the human aspects of Mumia Abu-Jamal’s mortality may have been taken for granted. Many of us have grown up with his case ever present in the political dialogues, media and music. However, due to his 27 year stay on death row, the case has seemingly disappeared from the minds of a once outraged public. The death sentence still hanging over his head has not been taken seriously. We must shift our thinking and return the sense of urgency once attributed to his case.

We can not trust that the very same legal system which trumped up murder charges against an innocent man because of his political affiliations and the color of his skin, will preserve his life.


MOBILIZE AND FIGHT TO SAVE MUMIA’S LIFE!!!

 

 

We must treat every day as though it is Mumia Abu-Jamal’s very last.
He is in there for us, and we are out here for him. What will you do to save his life?

What To Do:

 

Mass gatherings in solidarity with Mumia Abu-Jamal

Bring Mumia’s case to the headlines again, demand a new criminal and sentencing trial, say NO to the state murder of an innocent man.

 


http://www.emajonline.com/  Educators for Mumia Abu-Jamal


http://abu-jamal-news.com/   Journalists for Mumia Abu-Jamal


http://www.freemumia.org/   Free Mumia Abu-Jamal Coalition, NYC


http://www.partisandefense.org/campaigns/index.html

 

http://www.partisandefense.org/pubs/pamphlets.html  Partisan Defense Committee


http://www.laboractionmumia.org/  Labor Action Committee to Free Mumia Abu-Jamal


http://www.millions4mumia.org/  Millions for Mumia


http://www.bolshevik.org/Leaflets/kinder.html   Labor Solidarity with Mumia Abu-Jamal


http://www.onamove.com/mumia/  John Africa's MOVE organization

 

Pam Africa says: "The time is now for organizing... with all of the strength that you have" for MUMIA ABU-JAMAL

Pam Africa on the Supreme Court ruling against Mumia

On Tuesday, Jan. 19, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled against political prisoner Mumia Abu Jamal and granted the Philadelphia DA's petition for a writ of certiorari. Basically, the Supreme Court went against the lower federal circuit court's 2001 and 2008 rulings, which granted a new sentencing phase jury trial if the death penalty was to be reinstated in Jamal's case. Now the case goes back down to the 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals, who will decide whether they will re-impose the death penalty without the jury trial. 


January 23, 2010       By M.O.I. JR     Source: SF Bay View    M.O.I. JR's ZSpace Page

 

Pam Africa on the Supreme Court ruling against Mumia

On Tuesday, Jan. 19, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled against political prisoner Mumia Abu Jamal and granted the Philadelphia DA's petition for a writ of certiorari. Basically, the Supreme Court went against the lower federal circuit court's 2001 and 2008 rulings, which granted a new sentencing phase jury trial if the death penalty was to be reinstated in Jamal's case. Now the case goes back down to the 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals, who will decide whether they will re-impose the death penalty without the jury trial. In a recent interview with the Block Report, Mumia spoke about the Spisak case, in which the death penalty has since been reinstated for the white supremacist murderer Frank Spisak. The question is how this will affect Mumia's case since they both dealt with the Mills issue, which addresses confusing jury instructions.

We are now at the highest level of Code Red in the case of Mumia Abu Jamal. The people must come to this tireless souljah's defense.

I interviewed Pam Africa, the chairwoman of the International Concerned Family and Friends of Mumia Abu Jamal, about the direction of the "Free Mumia" movement at this critical time ...

M.O.I. JR: Now that we have this information on how the Supreme Court wants to move on Mumia's case, how is the International Concerned Family and Friends of Mumia Abu Jamal moving? And what do they need from the people?

Pam Africa: One thing that people need to understand is that this is a very crucial time. What we're doing today, we're having a press conference in front of the District Attorney's Office here in Philadelphia.

This is the first Black DA in the city of Philadelphia. His name is Seth Williams, who ran on the platform that when he became district attorney, he would execute Mumia. That's why we're having the demonstration there, because it eventually will end up in the hands of the district attorney.

The district attorney are the ones that are applying for this death sentence on Mumia. I know that they are battling Mills (the case concerning jury instructions) and everything else, but people must stay focused. The time is very short in dealing with the case of Mumia.

People must organize around the world. There are two petitions that are happening: One is by a group of people over in Germany with Mumia's attorney, Robert Bryan, calling on President Obama to get involved in the case and get Mumia a new case, because he never had a trial, really. 

But we're calling on the attorney general. When I say we, I'm saying there are several groups and organizations that is spearheaded by the New York (Free Mumia Abu-Jamal) Coalition that is calling on the attorney general, because what we're pointing out is that Mumia cannot get any fairness whatsoever.

Brewing right here is another example of what it is we're talking about. Mumia cannot get any fairness in this court system, so we're calling on the U.S. attorney general to do a civil rights investigation into this case, because Mumia's civil rights from the beginning to the end, and our civil rights as citizens of this United States who have pointed out the evidence very clearly (are threatened). That nobody can get around: Mumia is innocent. He is factually innocent.

And what we're asking people to do is to sign both of the petitions on behalf of Mumia. The one that the attorney is putting out there, because when he petitions and all, Obama, Obama's next move is that he has to go to the U.S. attorney general. And when he comes to the U.S. attorney general, he will fully know that our last person who signed the petition for the civil rights investigation was Skip Gates, who sat down and had a beer after he was beat up by the police, you know, at the White House. I'm saying, he signed the petition. We have people that are right in the ear of Obama and the attorney general.

 


And I want to point out very clearly, we have no hope whatsoever in the system. Our faith, Mumia's faith, is in the people. Will the people rise up and do what is right? Shaka Sankofa is dead because the people didn't consistently stay on top of these people when they did wrong. 

Tookie Williams, when they executed him, when they murdered him in cold-blood when the movement was moving, it should've continued to move that way. There are magnificent things that are happening in California around the death penalty, but everybody must unite together and move as one up against this government for the sake of Brotha (Troy) Davis, for the sake of all the brothas that's on death row right now.

Again there is Academics for Mumia, who are at Princeton University, who is having a meeting pulling academics together, and we're asking the academics to sign both of these petitions while they educate people. I'm telling you people, we are not without the evidence. If you go to the website at Journalists for Mumia, if you go into the Bay View, you will find all of the evidence that you need to bring the system down to its knees.

Once again, do not be duped by time; time is running out. And I know that when this next step is made, as I understand, things might be like six months and then it will go to the DA. The time might be a little bit off, but we don't have much time. It's time for them people to get into them churches, make them ministers get up, make these politicians get up, you know, make the people rise up, as they did in 1999, when we did Millions for Mumia. The time is now for organizing, organizing with all of the strength that you have.

And I just want to thank people like the Partisan Defense Committee, Labor for Mumia, the Mobilization for Mumia, Millions for Mumia. These people have stayed steadfast, and if I haven't mentioned the names of other people, there is a lot of individuals - JR and the Bay View - for keeping this issue up front in the people's eye.

 

The time is now for organizing, organizing with all of the strength that you have. People must pull together to abolish the death penalty. Save this brotha who has been on the front lines, from deathrow, on every issue of social justice that there is. 

 

And I will be down (in the Bay) on Feb. 18. I'll be in California, from the 18th to the 23rd. I'm coming down there for the brotha of the San Francisco 8 (Francisco Torres') hearing. I'm coming down there for Brotha JR's hearing, and I wish I could be in LA when they bring this murderous cop (who murdered) Oscar Grant there, but I'm going to be pushing for people to get there - everybody who can.

This death sentence that was handed out to this brotha; we can't allow it, people. And I'm saying y'all have been an example to all of the people around the world of resistance (of what can be done) when people be consistent at what they do. Y'all have had something done here when y'all had that murderous monster arrested. It must continue. This dude must sit on deathrow. That is where he needs to sit with all of the other people. And let people fight to get his behind off of deathrow.

You know, it can't be enough said: People must pull together. You must abolish the death penalty because it is wrong, all the way across the board. We must support JR and all of the brothas and sistas that was arrested. This is what Mumia is pushing for; this is what we're pushing for.

When we come to California, we'll be having more information about Mumia. The movement is moving real fast, so please while you are organizing for everything, tell people that they must get into the streets in order to save this brotha who has been on the front lines, from deathrow, on every issue of social justice that there is.

Email POCC Minister of Information JR, Bay View associate editor, at blockreportradio@gmail.com and visit www.blockreportradio.com .

 

Related Posts

Communique from MOVE, May 09

Download the MOVE, May '09 Communique HERE
 
ON THE MOVE! This communique is to update people on the status of parole for The MOVE 9. As of now Eddie and Delbert have been interviewed by the parole board.Eddie has been denied parole and was given a 2 year hit (meaning he won't see the parole board again for 2 years). Delbert has not yet received a decision from the parole board but we have no reason to expect anything different. MOVE women are scheduled to be interviewed by the parole board during the week of May 11 tho It is crystal clear that MOVE members are being denied parole solely because officials don't want any more MOVE people on the street and it has nothing to do with them believing that MOVE people are guilty of any crime. They release people that are admitted kidnappers, rapist, drug dealers and murderers everyday without blinking an eye. They know MOVE is none of those things but when it comes to innocent MOVE people, people that officials know are innocent, they refuse to release our family. This year, 2009, marks 31 years that our family has been unjustly imprisoned for the false accusation of murder by the very people who murdered, burned to death MOVE family members, including babies. Now explain to us how these rotten, twisted, contradiction-filled criminals can justify keeping our family in prison. MOVE have been telling people for over 35 years now that this system is rotten, it's twisted and ain't to be accepted by nobody because to accept it is to validate our own suffering. MOVE ain't never gonna accept the injustice, oppression, exploitation of this degenerate system. We've been fighting it all these years and we ain't never gonna stop fighting it, in jail or out. Thanks to MOVE'S founder, JOHN AFRICA, we understand clearly that walking out of those buildings called prison don't mean that you're free. As long as this brutal, sadistic system exist, ain't nobody free, ain't nobody safe. We're encouraging people to strongly and consistently confront the parole board about the continued im-prisonment of innocent MOVE family members but also about their illegal and unjust policies that effects everybody that comes before them and results in their prolonged imprisonment. JOHN AFRICA has taught MOVE people that consistency is strength so we have to keep the pressure on parole board officials even after they make their so-called decisions. We can't rest as long as our family members are unjustly imprisoned so we can't let them rest as long as our family members are unjustly imprisoned. Contact info for the parole board is attached so please make use of it. Also attached is the contact info for each of The MOVE 9 as well as Mumia. Please make use of that too. Oppressors have historically maintained their position because people have allowed them to. People have been tricked by a concept invented by the enemy called legality; a concept created to keep people oppressed by causing people to believe that they have no right to defend themselves from systematic oppression, that they are criminal if they protect themselves from oppression. JOHN AFRICA freed MOVE people from that confusion and gave us the understanding that protecting yourself is not criminal, it's instinctive it's THE Law. In 1776 the so called "founding fathers" defended themselves against an oppressive government and they are called "freedom fighters, heroes". Protect yourself from the system with the understanding that it's your natural right, your obligation (as even stated in their Declaration Of Independence), and the most effective way to do this is to really understand that this system and anybody that defends it is an enemy to life. This is the understanding JOHN AFRICA have given MOVE people and MOVE people are giving to others, through words and example. Don't let your enemy disarm you by destroying your instinct to defend yourself against him. Be strong and never give in to this menace, this monster that we know as the system because that's what those who push this system are counting on.
 
Contact us at: P.O. Box 19709 Phila., PA. 19143: 215 387-4107: onamovellja@aol.comor www.onamove.com
Also, visit www.cafepress.com/onamove for MOVE memorabilia
 
 
PA. Board Of Probation And Parole/ Central Office
Riverfront Office Center
1101 South Front Street
Harrisburg, PA. 17104
717 787-5699
 
Board Members
Catharine C. McVey/Chairperson; Michael L. Green; Jeffrey R. Imboden; Matthew T. Mangino;Benjamin A. Martinez; Gerard N. Massaro; Michael M. Webster; Lloyd A. White
 
District Attorney Lynn Abraham
Three South Penn Square
Phila., PA. 19107-3499
215 686-8700/ Fax 215 563-0047
da_webmail@phila.gov

 
Governor Edward Rendell
225 Main Capital Building
Harrisburg, PA. 17120
717 787-2500/ Fax 717 772-8284
governor_sites.state.pa.us/PA_Exec/Governor/govmail.html
 
PRISONERS' ADDRESSES
Debbie Sims Africa #006307
Janet Hollaway Africa #006308
Janine Phillips Africa #006309
SCI-Cambridge Springs
451 Fullerton Ave. Cambridge Springs, PA. 16403-1238
 
Charles Sims Africa #AM 4975
Michael Davis Africa #AM 4973
SCI-Graterford
P.O. Box 244 Graterford, PA. 19426-0246
 
William Phillips Africa #AM 4984
Delbert Orr Africa #AM 4985
SCI-Dallas
1000 Follies Rd. Dallas, PA. 18612-0286
 
Edward Goodman Africa #AM 4974
SCI-Mahanoy
301 Morea Rd. Frackville, PA. 17932
 
Mumia Abu Jamal #AM 8335
SCI-Greene
175 progress Dr. Waynesberg, PA. 15370
 

Eddie Africa was denied Parole, May 2009!!

We can never stop fighting for Eddie and other political prisoners!!

 

Keep the pressure on!!

 

 

Make Your Support KNOWN for the RELEASE of MOVE people from prison!

TO THE PAROLE BOARD

We are the passionate supporters of Debbie Sims Africa #006307, Janet Holloway Africa #006308, Janine Phillips Africa #006309, Michael Davis Africa #AM-4973, Charles Sims Africa #AM-4975, William Phillips Africa #AM-4984, Delbert Orr Africa #AM-4985, and Edward Goodman Africa #AM-4974. We would like to see their case overturned or at the very least have them paroled at THIS TIME. They have spent more of their lives in prison than as free citizens; convicted of crimes they did not commit. Up until now, all eight prisoners (nine including Merle Africa who died in prison) have been surviving persecution and the complete denial of their essential liberties. This appalling situation has touched our lives and we are willing to do what it takes to see the MOVE prisoners released. We hope that you will also see the imprisonment of the MOVE 9 as a tragedy and do everything in your power to ensure their immediate release. It is imperative that the surviving MOVE members be allowed to return to their families now. We hope you will hear our words and act with all the seriousness and reverence possible for the lives of these amazing people.


With Sincerity,

[Signature, printed name, mailing address]

 

To be sent to :

Chairperson Catherine C. McVey
and Board Members:  Fox, Green,
Imboden, Mangino, Martinez
Massaro, Viglione, & White
Board of Probation and Parole
Attn: Inmate Inquiry
1101 South Front Street, Suite 5300
Harrisburg, PA 17104

(and a copy to MOVE to make sure it goes in each prisoner's file)

_______________________________________________

 

Below, for sending TO PENNSYLVANIA POLITICIANS:

 

We are the passionate supporters of Debbie Sims Africa, Janet Holloway Africa, Janine Phillips Africa, Michael Davis Africa, Charles Sims Africa, William Phillips Africa, Delbert Orr Africa, and Edward Goodman Africa, the surviving members of the MOVE 9 who have been incarcerated in Pennsylvania prisons for 31 years. We would like to see their case overturned or at the very least have them paroled at THIS TIME. They have spent more of their lives in prison than as free citizens; convicted of crimes they did not commit. Up until now, all eightprisoners (nine including Merle Africa who died in prison) have been surviving persecution and the complete denial of their essential liberties. This appalling situation has touched our lives and we are willing to do what it takes to see the MOVE prisoners released. We hope that you will also see the imprisonment of the MOVE 9 as a tragedy and do everything in your power to ensure their immediate release. It is imperative that the surviving MOVE
members be allowed to return to their families now. We hope you will hear our words and act with all the seriousness and reverence possible for the lives of these amazing people.

With Sincerity,

[Signature, printed name, mailing address]

 

Send to:

Mayor Michael Nutter
City Hall
Office of Mayor, Rm#215
Philadelphia, PA  19107

 

Governer Ed Rendell
225 Main Capitol Building
Harrisburg, PA  17120

 

District Attorney
Lynne Abraham
Three South Penn Square
Philadelphia, PA  19107-3499

 

 

2008 parole denied!

from    http://move9parole.blogspot.com/

 

 

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

MOVE 9 Women Denied Parole!

Read MOVE's response here.

The Philadelphia Inquirer (READ FULL ARTICLE ) announced today that the three remaining MOVE 9 women (Debbie Sims Africa, Janet Hollaway Africa and Janine Phillips Africa) were denied parole by the PA Parole Board. The Inquirer quotes parole board spokesperson Leo Dunn as saying that parole had been denied on the grounds that the three MOVE prisoners had “minimized or denied the ‘nature and circumstances’ of the offense, ‘refused to accept responsibility’ and lacked remorse. He said the fourth reason for the rejections was the ‘negative recommendation’ by the prosecutor.”

The parole board used several of the stipulations that MOVE spokesperson Ramona Africa had predicted that they would try and use to deny parole, including that they "refused to accept responsibility" and lacked remorse.... The unfairness and arguable illegality of this is so obvious, because how can you expect someone to "admit guilt" when they've always said they are innocent? Where does remorse come from if someone is actually innocent?

The “nature and circumstances” stipulation is a blatant re-sentence, since the serious nature of the charges were considered by the judge at the time when he ruled that MOVE should be eligible for parole after 30 years. How can this fairly be used to deny parole?

A further outrage is that the women never even faced weapons charges, unlike the male MOVE 9 prisoners. Because of this, it had been thought by many observers that the women would have a better chance of receiving parole.

Therefore, if this is any indication, it does not look good for the MOVE 9 men, for whom the parole decision is still pending. If supporters want to make a difference and hold the parole board accountable for these blatantly unconstitutional parole stipulations, we must increase public pressure.

This blatantly unfair decision can only serve to validate the argument that the MOVE 9 are indeed “political prisoners”.


Sunday, April 13, 2008

After 30 Years, the MOVE 9 Must be Paroled

Local writer David Love wrote in this week's Black Commentator that the MOVE 9 "have been exemplary prisoners, and should be released. But many would argue that they should not have been imprisoned in the first place."

Posted by Hans Bennett at 8:23PM 0comments

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Update from Ramona Africa

ONA MOVE, Everybody! This is an update on the MOVE 9 parole situation.

Janine, Janet and Debbie were interviewed by Matthew Mangino in person and Judy Viglione watched on closed circuit TV. Janine told us that Mangino questioned her about the issue of innocence and then he didn't want to hear any information about MOVE's innocence. Janet and Debbie got to put out a lot of information about how many people sit in prison for 20, 30 years and have to be released because their innocence is proven so a conviction does not make a person guilty. Viglione asked Janet and Debbie a few questions about what they would be doing if they were released. The decision could take anywhere from a few weeks to a few months.

Our brothers see the parole board sometime this month but they don't have a specific date yet. My brother, Michael, was in the U.S. Marines before joining MOVE (he was around 17 years old) and after being around MOVE he decided not to go back to the Marines. He was AWOL (away without official leave). The Military Police came to MOVE Hq. and JOHN AFRICA gave them some serious information-they never came back. Now over 35 years later, when prison officials interviewed Michael to decide if they would recommend him for parole or not, they bring up this issue of Michael going AWOL from the military when he was 17.

It's obvious that this government does not want MOVE people on the street again so we have to keep the pressure on them so they have no choice but to release innocent MOVE people. Stay strong and keep sending letters to the parole board, keep the pressure on. Ona Move----Ramona

 

Addresses for MOVE members in prison

List of MOVE contacts
[updated June 2010 for Chuck]:

CHUCK SIMS AFRICA
#AM-4975
SCI Retreat
660 State Route 11
Hunlock Creek,
PA 18621


 

 

DEBBIE SIMS AFRICA
#OO-6307
451 Fullerton Ave
Cambridge Springs, PA
16403-1238

 

 

DELBERT ORR AFRICA
AM4985
Follies Road, Drawer K
Dallas, PA 18612
SCI Dallas

JANET HOLLOWAY AFRICA
#OO-6308
451 Fullerton Ave
Cambridge Springs, PA
16403-1238

 

 

JANINE PHILLIPS AFRICA
#OO-6309
451 Fullerton Ave
Cambridge Springs, PA
16403-1238

 

MICHAEL DAVIS AFRICA
#AM-4973
P.O. Box 244
Graterford, PA 19426-0244
SCI Graterford

 

 

 

 


EDWARD GOODMAN AFRICA
#AM-4974
301 Morea Road
Frackville, PA 17932
SCI Mahoney

 

 

 

WILLIAM PHILLIPS AFRICA
#AM-4984
Follies Road, Drawer K
Dallas, PA 18612
SCI Dallas

 

'Justice On Trial' Promotes Constitutional Debate about Mumia's Death Sentence

http://bignoisefilms.org/films/tactical-media/114-justice-on-trial

JUSTICE ON TRIAL - The Case of Mumia Abu-Jamal from bignoisetactical on Vimeo.

http://bignoisefilms.org/films/tactical-media/114-justice-on-trial

Mumia Abu-Jamal is the most recognized death row inmate in the world today. In 1982, he was was tried and convicted for the murder of Police Officer Daniel Faulkner. Since then, the Abu-Jamal trial proceedings have come under scrutiny and today his case is one of the most contested legal cases in modern American history. A former Black Panther and now renowned author, his books and writings in venues as diverse as the Yale Law Review, Forbes, Nation and street-papers for the homeless, have led many to hail him “the voice of the voiceless.”
 
Justice on Trial navigates the tempest of the Abu-Jamal trial by reviewing the known facts of the case. It demonstrates that the major violations in the Abu-Jamal case -- judicial bias, prosecutorial misconduct, racial discrimination in jury selection, police corruption and tampering with evidence to obtain a conviction--  are not special to this case. Instead, they are commonly practiced within the criminal justice system and account for the disproportionate incarceration of African Americans and Latinos in the United States. The case of Mumia Abu-Jamal is a microcosm of greater problems in the criminal justice system in the United States today. The attention that its many violations have received make the Abu-Jamal case one of the most important civil rights cases of our time.

ABU-JAMAL NEWS: Published by Journalists for Mumia... DOWNLOAD!!


Click on above front page or Download HERE!! 
http://abu-jamal-news.com/docs/proof.pdf

Check out Abu-Jamal News website at:
http://abu-jamal-news.com/

August 8th: FREE the MOVE 9! Thirty-Four Years of Political Imprisonment. Listen to KMUD radio show

Listen to Radical Rap on the 34th Anniversary of the August 8, 1978 police attack on the MOVE house in Philadelphia.  August 8th is also the day before Cotton Day, the anniversary of the fatal police beating of Martin Cotton in Eureka CA.

August 8th Radical Rap, KMUD radio:
http://archive.kmud.org/mp3/kmud_120808_190000wedtalk.mp3

MOVE was brutally targetted.  Because they survived the August 8th attack, the injustice system sent MOVE's Chuck, Debbie, Delbert, Eddie, Janet, Janine, Merle, Mike, and Phil Africa to prison.

The MOVE 9 have been political prisoners for the past 34 years.   Merle Africa, strong revolutionary, died (suspiciously) in prison in 1998.

Help FREE the MOVE prisoners!

Here are their addresses:  http://www.onamove.com/contact/

More info: http://www.onamove.com/

Because August 9th is Cotton Day, Radical Rap will be inviting people to remember the police murder of Martin "Freddy" Cotton and to join the struggle to end police violence.

Dec 22, 2012: Political prisoner Phil Africa hospitalized — Urgent support needed

Political prisoner Phil Africa hospitalized — urgent support needed

ONA MOVE!  Our brother William Phillips (Africa) who has been imprisoned at the State Correctional Institution at Dallas PA. was rushed to the Wilkes Barre General Hospital and is in intensive care.  We need all of our supporters to call the prison (570 675-1101) and the hospital (570 829-8111) to inquire about Phil. We are very concerned because this is exactly what happened with our sister, Merle Africa.  She had stomach cramps and was taken out to the hospital and the next message that we got is that she died.  This is a very serious situation.  Please give his correct name (William Phillips #AM 4984) when calling so they can’t say that they don’t know who you’re talking about.  

Thanks for all your support——-Ramona 

Update: ONA MOVE, All!  A special thank you to all of you that took time to make the requested calls.  It truly matters because all the hospital staff can talk about is all the calls from all over the world that they’re getting about Phil.  That truly puts protection on him and he needs it.  Two of our brothers were able to visit Phil in the hospital (where they continue to say he’s not at) and Phil is unconscious.  They are saying that they had to medicate him to keep him calm.  We want to know why Phil’s being medicated to intensely that he won’t be alert for two days.  We don’t trust this so we’re remaining ever vigilant and will keep you updated.  Thanks again for all the calls.  If you haven’t yet called, please take the time to do so.  It keeps the pressure on.  Take good care——Ramona

December 9, 2010: 29 Years of Mumia's Frame Up

DECEMBER 9, 2010 IS THE 29TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE DAY THE PHILADELPHIA COPS
ATTEMPTED TO KILL MUMIA ABU JAMAL. THEY TERRORIZED, BEAT, SHOT, KIDNAPPED,
JAILED, FRAMED, AND SENTENCED HIM TO DEATH ROW. MUMIA IS A POLITICAL
PRISONER IN PENNSYLVANIA.

http://redwoodcurtaincopwatch.net/node/645

http://freemumianow.blogspot.com/2010/12/december-9-in-nyc-international.html

http://www.prisonradio.org/mumia.htmhttp://www.prisonradio.org/mumia.htm

http://www.freemumia.org/

http://www.emajonline.com/

Documented Police Brutality Anniversaries: Aug 7, Aug 8, Aug 9

Police State Continues to Expand.
If we don't confront it now, then WHEN?

August 7, 2010: Humboldt County Sheriff's Deputies Murder Robert Garth in Blue Lake

http://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2010/08/08/18655719.php?show_comments=1#18655924

http://www.youtube.com/user/RedwoodCopWatch#p/u

August 8, 1978: Philadelphia Police Try to Kill MOVE Men, Women, and Children at MOVE Home; Police Kill One of Their Own and Lock Up Nine MOVE Members "for Murder"; The MOVE 9, U.S. political prisoners, have been in prison since 1978

http://move9parole.blogspot.com/

http://www.archive.org/details/AH-MOVE

August 9, 2011: Eureka Police Officers Viciously Beat Martin Cotton in front of Eureka Rescue Mission and many onlookers; Eureka Cops Jail Martin and Humboldt Sheriff Guards Beat Him More and Leave Him To DIE

http://redwoodcurtaincopwatch.net/search/node/martin%20cotton

Film Screening: MOVE compilation May 13th at PARC

AttachmentSize
Image icon May13th, screening1.png370.64 KB
Image icon May13th, screening2.png341.4 KB

Never forget 1985! Now is the time to free the MOVE 9!

Friday May 13 at 8pm, watch “August 8, 1978” to understand the unjust incarceration of the MOVE 9 and how the battle for their release lead to the bombing of MOVE in 1985.

Screening at Peoples Action for Rights and Community (PARC) located in the alley on Qst between 2nd and 3rd, just North of Eureka Library, look for the signs on the car port.

FREE Snacks and Drinks provided. For more info call PARC at (707) 442-7465

 

From Ramona Africa: To this day no official has been held accountable for the murder of our MOVE family which the whole world witnessed. Meanwhile, the MOVE 9 sit in prison 31 years later, being falsely accused of a murder officials know they didnt commit and nobody can say they saw any one of them commit. In fact, at the end of the trial the trial judge stated publicly that he didn't have the faintest idea who killed Officer Ramp on August 8, 1978. Officials can't give us back our family that they murdered on May 13th 26 years ago but they can give us back our innocent family members that they have behind their prison walls despite their innocence.

onamovellja@aol.com
215 386 1165
215 687 1147
267 408 7802

Ona MOVE!
LONG LIVE JOHN AFRICA!

Ona MOVE! The MOVE Organization is releasing this communique to once again remind folks of the vicious and deliberate massacre of our innocent family members, including babies, by the government on May 13, 1985. We will never let this official treachery be forgotten and we will never stop grieving for our murdered family members. Neither will we let officials divert people from what is really behind that brutal attack. It had nothing to do with any complaints from neighbors. Officials don’t care about people complaining, this is proven in the fact that officials are still ignoring the complaints of Osage Ave. residents about their rebuilt houses. The root of the official massacre of innocent MOVE members is our unrelenting fight for the release of our innocent family members known as the MOVE 9. Officials dare to call our family murderers based on the false accusation of the murder of one cop while eleven MOVE men, women, and babies and numerous animals were murdered by officials and nobody has ever been charged with their murder. The MOVE 9 are serving 30-100 year sentences each despite their innocence and officials are collecting pensions despite their guilt. People that choose to believe that the MOVE 9 are guilty have to explain the trial judge who sat through the trial saying at the end of the trial that he didn’t have “the faintest idea” who killed James Ramp on August 8, 1978. At this point, MOVE people have been in prison three years past their 30 year minimum, they have seen the parole board three times and been denied three times because they won’t lie and say they’re guilty when in fact they are innocent. We encourage people to keep the pressure on the PA Parole Board, don’t let up, keep those letters and calls coming. Consistency is strength, it’s power.

Contact MOVE @ P.O. Box 19709, Phila, PA 19143
215 386 1165, onamovellja@aol.com

PA Board of Probation and Parole
Riverfront Office Center
1101 South Front Street
Harrisburg, PA 17104
717 787 5699

Board Members: Catherine McVey, Michael Green,
Jeffrey Imboden, Matthew Mangino, Benjamin
Martinez, C. James Fox, John Tuttle, Judith
Viglionne, Lloyd White

District Attorney Seth Williams
Three South Penn Square
Phila, PA 19107
215 686 8700
da_webmail@phila.gov

Gorvernor Tom Corbett
225 Main Capitol Bldg
Harrisburg, PA 17120
717 787 2500

Friday, Oct 18th Special Film Screening! MUMIA: LONG DISTANCE REVOLUTIONARY

AttachmentSize
Image icon MumiaMovieFlier-web.jpg65.93 KB

Film Screening of an Amazing New & Important Film!

Long Distance Revolutionary is an excellent deptiction of Mumia Abu-Jamal as the brave activist, eloquent journalist & admirable human being he truly is...  a brilliant writer, commentator & media critic.  This film focuses on his life and work-- in so doing, shows the real motive of those who have tried UNSUCCESSFULLY to silence him forever...

Film and Dinner free!    8:00PM

This event will be at PARC, Peoples' Action for Rights and Community:
in the Q Street alley between 2nd and 3rd, EUREKA, near the Samoa bridge

The event is hosted by Redwood Curtain CopWatch, as we approach Days of Action Against Police Brutality (Oct 22 & 23) 
707.633.4493
copwatchrwc@riseup.net
redwoodcurtaincopwatch.net

MUMIA-THEMOVIE.COM

HOORAY!!!: Court Ruling Favors Political Prisoner MUMIA

WE STILL HAVE TO KEEP THE PRESSURE UP!!

Appeal ruling favoring Abu-Jamal smacks US Supreme Court

http://www.thiscantbehappening.net/node/579
Tue, 04/26/2011  by:    Linn Washington Jr.

The federal Third Circuit Court of Appeals, in a stunning smack at the
U.S. Supreme Court, has issued a ruling upholding its call for a new
sentencing hearing in the controversial case of convicted cop-killer
Mumia Abu-Jamal.

That ruling issued on Tuesday April 26, 2011 upholds a ruling the Third Circuit issued over two years ago siding with a federal district court judge who had set aside Abu-Jamal's death penalty after determining that death penalty instructions provided to the jury during Abu-Jamal's 1982 trial were unclear.

The U.S. Supreme Court had ordered the Third Circuit to re-examine its
rulings eliminating Abu-Jamal's death sentence.

The nation's high court cited it legal precedent in that directive to
the Third Circuit, a strange order given the fact that the Supreme
Court had consistently declined to apply its precedent to Abu-Jamal's
previous appeals despite those appeals containing ample proof that
court precedent applied.

The Associated Press was the first to report the Third Circuit's ruling that as of the morning of the ruling's release was not posted on the appeals court's website.

Abu-Jamal's lead attorney, Prof Judith Ritter of the Widener Law
School, could not be reached for comment.

The Third Circuit's ruling had required Philadelphia prosecutors to
hold a new sentencing hearing if they wanted the death penalty
reinstated.

If prosecutors opted against holding new hearing then Abu-Jamal's
sentence would be converted to a life sentence which in Pennsylvania
means the inmate has no chance of parole – spending the remainder of
their life behind bars.

Experts contend a new sentencing hearing would be problematic for prosecutors despite the fact that such a hearing could not immediately produce a new trial and the possibility of release for Abu-Jamal.

 

During such a hearing the defense could present the mounds of new evidence now available that undercut the entirety of the prosecution's original case against Abu-Jamal who was convicted of killing a Philadelphia policeman in December 1981.

 

Experts expect that prosecutors will appeal the Third Circuit's latest ruling. Prosecutors concede that current and yet unresolved legal issues in this case, attracting unprecedented international scrutiny, will keep it in courts for years.

In early April 2011 the vaulted NAACP Legal Defense Fund publicly
announced joining the Abu-Jamal defense team working with Professor
Ritter. NAACP lawyers joined Ritter last fall during a hearing where
she argued the legal point upheld by the Third Circuit's ruling.

Recently Abu-Jamal recorded yet another birthday (4/24) inside a death row isolation cell. Abu-Jamal and the 222 other Pennsylvania death row inmates spend 23-hours per day everyday isolated inside minimalist cells.

Since 1983 Abu-Jamal's formally languished in the confinement of death
row following his controversial July 1982 conviction for murdering
Philadelphia policeman Daniel Faulkner.

Abu-Jamal, now 57, has spent nearly thirty-years in prison for a crime he's persistently denied committing…a crime that ample evidence conclusively proves did not occur as police and prosecutors have proclaimed.

Authorities, for example, claim Abu-Jamal fired four shots at the
policeman as he lay defenseless on a sidewalk but striking him only
once with a fatal shot in the face.

However, police crime scene photos and police reports make no
reference of any bullet marks in that sidewalk around the fallen
officer that should be there if Abu-Jamal fired three shots into the
sidewalk as authorities contend.

As detailed in an thorough investigative ballistic test released in
September 2010 by This Can't Be Happening, it is impossible to fire
hi-velocity bullets into a sidewalk without leaving any marks. TCBH
test fired each kind of .38-caliber bullets referenced in police
reports about the 1981 crime scene and each of those bullets left
easily visible marks…marks totally contradicting claims by authorities
that Abu-Jamal wildly fired into the sidewalk without leaving bullet
marks.

Rulings by federal and state courts denying Abu-Jamal the legal relief
granted other inmates raising the same appeals claims are the least
examined element of this injustice condemned internationally.

The same Philadelphia and Pennsylvania courts that found major flaws
by either defense attorneys, police, prosecutors and/or trial judges
in 86 Philadelphia death penalty convictions during a twenty-eight
year period after Abu-Jamal's December 1981 arrest declare no errors
exist anywhere in the Abu-Jamal case – an assertion critics call
statistiically improbable.

The federal Third Circuit, for example, declined to grant Abu-Jamal a
new trial based on solid legal issues from discrimination by
prosecutors in jury selection to documented errors by trial judge
Albert Sabo, the late jurist who relished his infamous reputation for
pro-prosecution biases.

The Third Circuit's 2008 ruling faulting Sabo for his inability to
provide the jury with simple death penalty deliberation instructions
included the contradictory conclusion that Sabo adequately provided
the jury with instructions about a highly complicated legal issue
involving misconduct by the trial prosecutor.

Faulting Sabo for that flawed instruction on prosecutorial misconduct
would have required the Third Circuit to give Abu-Jamal lead a new
trial. But that court sidestepped its duty to justice deciding to just
eliminate Abu-Jamal's death sentence.

Pennsylvania state courts have released three Philadelphians from death row (half of PA's death row exonerations) citing misconduct by police and prosecutors…misconduct that was less egregious than that documented in the Abu-Jamal case. One of those Philadelphia exonerations involved a man framed by police for a mob-related who was arrested six months before Abu-Jamal.

While many feel Abu-Jamal is guilty as charged, millions around the
world question every aspect of this conviction citing facts that
proponents of Abu-Jamal's conviction deliberately dismiss as
irrelevant.

This reasoned questioning of Abu-Jamal's guilt is the reason why
pro-Abu-Jamal activities occurred around the world commemorating
Abu-Jamal's 4/24 birthday including people in San Francisco attending
a screening of the "Justice on Trial" movie examining ignored aspects
in the case, people marching for Abu-Jamal's freedom in the Brixton
section of London.

Officials in the French city of Saint-Denis will stage a ceremony rededicating a street they named for Abu-Jamal during the last weekend in April.

The ire erupting over Abu-Jamal's prominence from many advocates of
his execution contains contradictions that are as clear as the
proverbial black-&-white.

The U.S. Congress engaged in color-coded contradiction while approving
a May 2006 resolution condemning far off Saint-Denis for its honoring
Abu-Jamal by placing his name on a small one block long street.

Over a decade before that anti-Saint-Denis outrage over 100 members of
Congress battled to block the U.S. government's deportation of a white
fugitive convicted of killing a British Army officer in Belfast,
Northern Ireland.

That officer's killing occurred during an investigation into the
murder of a Belfast policeman.

Incidentally, the U.S. Congress did not erupt angrily when the City
Council of New York City voted to place the name of that fugitive –
Joseph Doherty – on the street corner outside the federal detentionn
center then housing him.

In 1988 – six years after Abu-Jamal's conviction -- more than 3,000
Philadelphians signed petitions asking federal authorities to grant
Doherty special permission to leave his federal detention cell for one
day to allow Doherty to serve as Grand Marshall of Philadelphia's St
Patrick's Day Parade.

One Philly supporter of suspected cop killer Doherty was the then
President Judge of Philadelphia's trial courts, Edward J. Bradley.

Judge Bradley told a reporter in 1988 that he had no problems as a
jurist reconciling his support for a convicted felon because he
questioned the "fair treatment" Irish nationals received in English
courts.

Judge Bradley's concern about fairness for IRA fighters in English
courts is a concern about fairness Philadelphia courts never raise in
the case of former Black Panther Party member Abu-Jamal that evidence
gross unfairness by Philadelphia and Pennsylvania state court judges.

Critics who castigate contributions to Abu-Jamal's defense fund,
especially from Hollywood stars, did not object to one of the white
Los Angeles policemen convicted in federal court for the 1991 beating
of Rodney King raising (and keeping) nearly $10-million in sales from
his book and a fund-raising campaign – monies generated mainly after
that former police sergeant's imprisonment for a civil rights
violation conviction.

One reason why the decades old Abu-Jamal case continues to excite and
infuriate is Abu-Jamal himself.

Abu-Jamal is a charismatic figure who is articulate possessing
intelligence atypical of the mainly illiterate denizens of death row.

While on death row Abu-Jamal's written six critically acclaimed books (including one on jailhouse lawyers), produced thousands of commentaries, learned two foreign languages, earned two colleges degrees including a Masters and developed a loyal support network comprising millions worldwide.

Even the prosecutor at Abu-Jamal's 1982 trial – Joseph McGill –
described him during that trial as the most "intelligent" defendant
he'd ever faced.

And another prosecutor, during Abu-Jamal's tainted 1995 appeals
hearing, said he didn't think "the shooting of Officer Faulkner is
characteristic of this defendant." Abu-Jamal had no record of violence
or criminal acts before his 1981 arrest.

Supporters applaud Abu-Jamal's defense of the downtrodden particularly his poignant criticisms of America's prison-industrial complex that incarcerates more people per capita than any other country on earth.

 

Abu-Jamal's stance highlighting deprivations of the have-nots predated his arrest earning him the title of "Voice of the Voiceless" during his professional broadcast reporting career from 1975 till his December 1981 arrest.

 

Interestingly, Abu-Jamal rarely uses his world-wide platform to reference his own plight focusing instead on injustices endured by others.

MUMIA'S LIFE IN DANGER! New Info: Protests, Rallies, Events

MUMIA'S LIFE IS IN DANGER!

Come out on November 9th 2010 to say:

MUMIA IS INNOCENT !  FREE MUMIA! 
END THE RACIST DEATH PENALTY!


MUMIA ABU-JAMAL faces his likely last court hearing on November 9th, 2010, at the Third Circuit Federal Court of Appeals, in Philadelphia.  This hearing is about sentencing only. 

Why is this happening?

Targeted by the FBI's infamous COINTELPRO counter-intelligence and disruption program since the age of 15, and now by the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP), Mumia Abu-Jamal is seen as an enemy of the state. His innocence is considered irrelevant, and in US courts, following recent rulings, innocence is no defense.

The US Supreme Court has already thrown out, without comment, Mumia's last appeal against his frame-up conviction before a racist judge in a blatantly unfair trial in 1982.  This rejection meant the Supreme Court had to ignore mountains of evidence of Mumia's innocence, as well as precedents such as its own ruling in Batson v Kentucky, which was supposed to prevent racism in jury selection.

Now, on November 9th 2010, the Third Circuit is to decide between removing the stay on Mumia's death sentence, or ordering a new hearing to decide between a new death sentence, or life in prison without the possibility of parole.  These are the only two possible outcomes in the courts at this time.  The US Supreme Court has pre-arranged the Nov 9th hearing to make an immediate reinstatement of Mumia's death sentence the likely outcome.

We can have no confidence in the corrupt, racist US legal system to resolve this, because the cops, courts and key politicians are all involved up to their ears in Mumia's frame-up!  This includes the current governor of Pennsylvania, Ed Rendell, as well as the Obama administration and its attorney general, Eric Holder.

We need mass actions, and labor actions, to say:  Mumia Is Innocent!  Free Mumia Now!  End the Racist Death Penalty!
_  _  _  _  _  _  _  _  _  _  _

ON NOVEMBER 9TH, 2010:

PHILADELPHIA:  Demonstrate to Free Mumia Now!  Come to the Third Circuit Court, 6th and Market, Philadelphia, at 12 Noon on Tuesday November 9th. (The hearing starts at 2 PM.)
_  _  _  _  _  _  _  _  _  _

NEW YORK CITY:  Get on the bus to Philadelphia!  Call the Mumia hotline at: 212 330-8029.  Leave a message to request a seat on the bus to Philadelphia.
_  _  _  _  _  _  _  _  _  _  _

OAKLAND:  12 Noon on Tuesday, November 9th: Come to 14th and Broadway in downtown Oakland. Called by the Labor Action Committee To Free Mumia Abu-Jamal.

Demonstrate to say: Mumia Is Innocent!  Free Mumia! 
End the Racist Death Penalty!

INFO: 510 763-2347.

ENDORSED BY: Campaign To End The Death Penalty; Mobilization To Free Mumia; Revolution Books of Berkeley; Noelle Hanrahan & Prison Radio; Peoples Radio; ANSWER Coalition of SF; Black Student Union, Laney College; Black Student Union, SFSU; Marsha Feinland; Peace and Freedom Party of California; Minister of Information JR; Prisoners of Conscience Committee; International Bolshevik Tendency; International Socialist Organization; Revolutionary Workers Group; Radical Women; Freedom Socialist Party. 
New endorsements, call the info number.

_  _  _  _  _  _  _  _  _  _

SAN FRANCISCO:  7 PM on Tuesday November 9th:  Come to Centro del Pueblo, 474 Valencia St.  The new film, "JUSTICE ON TRIAL, the Case of Mumia Abu-Jamal," will be screened.  Hans Bennett of Abu-Jamal News, and other speakers.  Donation.  Called by the Mobilization To Free Mumia Abu-Jamal.  Info: 510 268-9429.
_  _  _  _  _  _  _  _  _ _  _

OTHER IMPORTANT ACTIVITIES:
_  _  _  _  _  _  _  _  _  _

PHILADELPHIA, 6 PM, FRIDAY  NOV 5TH:

TEACH-IN: Come to the A-Space, 4722 Baltimore Ave, Philadelphia.  Who is Mumia Abu Jamal and why 11/09 is So Critical? TEACH-IN/Informational Session --Who is Mumia Abu Jamal? --What are the facts surrounding his case? --Why are we, on *11/9 demanding:

“No Execution/No Life” for Mumia Abu Jamal?
(11/9, Third Circuit Court of Appeals, will be deciding whether Mumia Abu Jamal will be executed or remain in prison for the rest of his life)

--How can you get involved?  Q & A with Pam Africa

Sponsored by: International Concerned Family and Friends of Mumia Abu Jamal (ICFFMAJ).   Info:  Iresha.Picot@gmail.com
_  _  _  _  _  _  _  _  _  _

SAN FRANCISCO, 2 PM MONDAY  NOV 8TH:

The important new film on Mumia, "JUSTICE ON TRIAL, the Case of Mumia Abu-Jamal," will be shown at:

San Francisco State University.  Come to the Richard Oaks Multi-cultural Center, Room T-145 in the Student Center, at SFSU, at 19th and Holloway, San Francisco.  Sponsored by the Black Student Union of SFSU.  Info: 925 784-9206
_  _  _  _  _  _  _  _  _  _ _

PHILADELPHIA: 6:30 PM, MONDAY,  NOV. 8TH:

DEBATE! -- Come to the National Constitution Center, 6th & Arch Streets.  A debate between DA Seth Williams, and attorney/activist Michael Coard, will follow a showing of a film which seeks to condemn Mumia to death for a crime he didn't commit.  The film, "Barrel of a Gun," by Tigre Hill, denies Mumia's innocence, but you can be there for the debate that follows the film to support Mumia. 

Also debating will be Prof. Johanna Fernandez of Educators for Mumia and Mumia 101, the writer/director of the new film, JUSTICE ON TRIAL, which tells the truth about Mumia's case.  She will be challenging Tigre Hill, the producer of "Barrel of a Gun."

The Concerned Family and Friends of Mumia Abu-Jamal (ICFFMAJ) have purchased blocks of tickets for this event, at $13 each, to make sure friends of Mumia are in the audience, and not just the FOP.  To purchase a ticket, call 215 476-8812.  In New York City, call 212 330-8029.
_  _  _  _  _  _  _  _  _  _

SAN FRANCISCO, 7 PM, SATURDAY DECEMBER 4TH :

Showing of the important new film, "JUSTICE ON TRIAL, The Case of Mumia Abu-Jamal"

Come to the Twin Space, 2111 Mission St, San Francisco.  Sponsor: Minister of Information JR.  Info: 415 504-5289
_  _  _  _  _  _  _  _  _  _  _

WORLDWIDE:

HAMBURG - 5:30 PM, Tuesday Nov 9th: RALLY! Come to: Hamburg-america-center Entwicklungsgesellschaft mbH & Co. KG, Am  Sandtorkai 48, 20457 Hamburg.  The rally is endorsed by the International Bolshevik Tendency  and the Antikrisen-Bündnis Hamburg.
_  _  _  _  _  _

LONDON - 5 - 7 PM,  Tuesday Nov 9th: DEMONSTRATE: US Embassy, 24 Grosvenor Sq, London W1. FOR FREEDOM FOR MUMIA!  Mumia’s case returns to court on the 9th November 2010.  At stake is whether he will be murdered by the State or granted a new jury trial [on the sentencing issue].  Mumia is innocent!  He is a political prisoner!  Mumia should be released unconditionally immediately!  FREE MUMIA  FREE MUMIA  FREE MUMIA

FREE ALL POLITICAL PRISONERS NOW    BRING FLASHLIGHTS
Contact:ThePanAfrikanVoice@gmail.com 07597078221/07949738851
_  _  _  _  _  _  _

TORONTO - 6 PM, Tuesday Nov 9th.  Come to the U.S. Consulate, 360 University Avenue (between Dundas and Queen) to demand:

Free Mumia!  Abolish the Racist Death Penalty!

At a meeting on Wednesday 27 October representatives of a number of organizations met and formed a committee to organize a united front demonstration for Mumia Abu-Jamal on 9 November.  The following organizations have endorsed the demonstration to date: Angola 3 Support Committee, Black Action Defense Committee, Fightback, Ginger Project, International Bolshevik Tendency, OPIRG (UofT), Socialist Action, Socialist Alternative, Toronto Young New Democrats.*

*Other endorsements are expected, and all defenders of Mumia are welcome.

- This message compiled from various reports by:
The Labor Action Committee To Free Mumia Abu-Jamal
PO Box 16222 • www.laboractionmumia.org

May 13, 2011: 26 years since government bombed MOVE family

ONA MOVE, All!  As I'm sure you all are aware, May 13th is close at hand, and of course we never let it go by without reminding folks of the bombing and murder of our MOVE family that day in 1985.  We plan to rally and distribute info/ updates on the four corners of Broad and Chestnut Sts. in Philly on Saturday May 14th from 12:00pm til 3:00pm.  It's always good to get out there with the people to talk to them and pass out info. Also, I would really like to do a screening of the August 8th film on Friday evening May 13th so if any of our Philly supporters have ideas on a good place to do that please let me know ASAP.  For our supporters outside of Philly, particularly those outside the country, I urge you to do something in your area.  One of the things that we encourage you to do is a screening of the August 8th film.  We have them available for $10.00 plus postage if you need to order it.  Take care and hope to see you all in May---Ramona

Mumia Abu-Jamal : Videos Taken by Partisan Defense Committee

Films from the early 1990's.  Mumia has since been moved to a different prison in Pennsylvania, SCI Greene. The Governer of PA is now Ed Rendell who was the Philadelphia DA during the 70's. No longer are pictures or video allowed to be taken of prisoners in PA.  Interviews are not allowed in CA prisons. All photos of Mumia are now at least a decade old.  Learn alot watching these.

http://www.youtube.com/my_favorites

 

Mumia Court Updates with Audio Links

Prison Radio recorded attorney Rachel Wolkenstein, Pam Africa, Ramona Africa and Linn Washington outside of the Criminal Court at 13th and Filbert in Philadelphia minutes after the filing of Mumia Abu-Jamal's pro se objection to his sentence of life in prison. Mumia also comments on the filing.

 

Audio link for mp3 downloads here:

http://www.prisonradio.org/media/audio/mumia-court-updates-82412


Background

In 2001 the Federal Courts set aside Mumia Abu-Jamal's death sentence.  Just last December, after ten years of bitter and protracted appeals, the District Attorney of Philadelphia (Seth Williams) publicly announced that he would not hold a penalty phase hearing, and pursue the imposition of a death sentence. Williams conceded that legally and politically the District Attorney’s office would not succeed getting a Philadelphia jury to vote for death in this case.  


Mumia Abu-Jamal was then summarily moved by the Department of Corrections off of death row at SCI Greene (he had been in solitary confinement on death row for nearly 30years) and into a minimum security prison at SCI Mahanoy. His corporal status remained in limbo, and for the past 9 months he had no formal sentence.  


On Monday August 13th, in a highly irregular action, Common Pleas Court President Judge Pamela Dembe without notice issued an order sentencing Mumia Abu-Jamal to life in prison without parole. There was no notice given to any party prior to the order.  There was no notice of the order after its execution until, eight days after this irregularity was uncovered.  In another oddity, the order was issued under the name Wesley Cook, without reference to his legal name (Mumia Abu-Jamal) the name under which his court records have been filed for thirty years. At the direction of Rachel Wolkenstein, an investigator with the Pittsburgh based Human Rights Coalition Bret Grote was checking the court docket, and noticed the order. 


Mumia as soon as he became aware of this action (as he had no formal notice from the court) filed a pro se challenge to this imposition of a sentence by the court.  This motion challenging his sentence was delivered to the court by attorney Rachel Wolkenstein, who had received it from Mumia that morning, and it was filed within minutes of the statutory deadline required to challenge the order.


Mumia Abu-Jamal’s pro se petition challenges the order on both procedural and constitutional grounds. The imposition of life imprisonment violates cruel and unusual punishment and violates international standards on torture.  In addition, his petition states that his three decades of imprisonment are a result of judicial and prosecutorial misconduct, as he is innocent.


Read the article by Linn Washington here:

http://prisonradio.wordpress.com/2012/08/24/the-secret-scheme-to-sabotage-abu-jamals-appeal-rights/

Mumia Transfer (Dec 14, 2011)

ONA MOVE, Everybody!  We've received news that Mumia has now been transferred to SCI-Mahanoy, another prison in Pennsylvania.  He is in "Administrative Segregation", he is not in general population yet. We need to let those administrators know, immediately, that we know Mumia is there and that the WORLD is watching.  People need to flood the prison with calls and flood Mumia with postcards (Mumia needs to know that we have his back). ----Ramona

Mumia Abu Jamal
AM-8335
SCI-Mahanoy
301 Morea Rd.
Frackville, PA. 17932
 
Superintendent John Kerestes
Deputy Superintendent Bernadette Mason

This is no time to relax, we must be ever-vigilant!!!

New Poem for Mumia by Alice Walker

Occupying Mumia’s Cell   Courtesy of prisonradio 

I Sing of Mumia
brilliant and strong
and of the captivity
that
few black men escape
if they are as free
as he has become.

 

What a teacher he is for all of us.

 

Nearly thirty years in solitary
and still,
Himself.

 

He will die himself.
A black man;
whom many consider to be
a Muslim, though this is not
how he narrows down
the  criss-crossing paths of
his soul’s journey.
Perhaps it is simpler
to call him
a lover of truth
who refuses
to be silenced.
Is anything more persecuted
in this land?

 

No boots will be allowed
of course
so he will not
die with them on;
but there will always be
boots
of the mind and spirit
and of the heart and soul.

 

His will be black and shining
(or maybe the color of rainbows)
and they will sprout wings.

 

Mumia
they have decided
finally
not to kill you
hoping no blood will
stain their hands
at the tribunal
of the people;
but to let you continue
to die slowly
creating and singing
your own songs
as you pace
alone,  sometimes terrorized,
for decades of long nights
in your small cage
of a cell.

 

We lament our impotence: that we have failed
to get you out of there.

 

Your regal mane may have thinned
as our locks too, those flags of  our self sovereignty, may even have
disappeared;
waiting out this unjust sentence,
until we, like you, have become old.
Still,
if you will: accept our gratitude
that you stand, even bootless,
on your feet.  We see
that few of those around us,
well shod and walking, even owning, the streets
are freed.

 

Somehow you have been.

 

Enough to remind us
of freedom’s devout
internal and
ineradicable seed.

 

What a magnificent Lion
you have been all these
disastrous years
and still are,
indeed.

Copyright©2011 by Alice Walker

OAKLAND PORT TO SHUT FOR OSCAR GRANT, OCT 23rd! OSCAR GRANT & MUMIA; TWO RALLIES, SAME FIGHT

- An urgent message from the Labor Action Committee To Free Mumia Abu-Jamal -

Please forward, post and distribute widely: * Oscar Grant & Mumia Abu-Jamal - Mass mobilizations*!

TWO RALLIES, SAME FIGHT! Against racism, injustice and official murder of the innocent! PLEASE SCROLL DOWN for full information

 

1. OAKLAND, October 23rd 2010: PORT SHUT DOWN FOR OSCAR GRANT!
Rally: 12 Noon, City Hall, 14th and Broadway

 

OUTRAGE! An Innocent Black Man Shot in the Back by Police and... Killed for No Reason!

 

*Killer Cop Gets Off With Involuntary Manslaughter! * *

 

Photographic Evidence Proves: It Was Murder! *

 

Oscar Grant was a father of a young daughter, a working person in Oakland, and innocent of any crime! He was shot while he was held face-down with his hands behind him, by BART cop Johannes Mehserle!

 

Only because of massive street protests in Oakland, and cell-phone videos of the shooting which made it onto the nightly news, was the cop eventually charged with murder. But after a change of venue to Los Angeles, Mehserle received the lightest conviction: involuntary manslaughter. Oakland's integrated community rose again to protest.

 

ILWU Calls Rally& Port Shutdown!  

With Mehserle's long-delayed sentencing set for November 5th, Local 10 of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU), supported by many other unions and local community groups, called for a rally in downtown Oakland for Saturday, October 23rd at 12 noon.

 

And now the longshore membership has voted for a port shutdown as well, to say: Justice for Oscar Grant! Labor Unity With the Community! Jail Killer Cops!

The day-long shutdown on the docks is supported by ILWU Local 10 (longshore), Local 34 (Clerks), and the port workers in SEIU Local 1021, who will also walk off the job on October 23rd. The rally for Oscar Grant has been supported unanimously by both San Francisco and Alameda County Labor Councils. Support has also come in from the Oakland Education Association (OEA - Oakland teachers), AFT Local 2121, UAW 2865, AFSCME 3299, and other unions. The ANSWER Coalition, Campaign To End the Death Penalty (CEDP), Code Pink, Barrio Unido, and numerous others also support this action.

 

*All out! Make This Labor/Community Rally Massive! Saturday, October 23rd, 12 Noon, at 14th& Broadway, Oakland.*

 

The Labor Action Committee To Free Mumia Abu-Jamal will be there with the following call: Justice for Oscar Grant! Jail Killer Cops! Maximum Sentence for Johannes Mehserle! Mumia Is Innocent! Free Mumia!

 

2. PHILADELPHIA, November 9th 2010, 2 PM, Third Circuit Court, 6th& Market

 

OUTRAGE! *An Innocent Man Faces Execution... Again! Will Mumia Be Killed For No Reason?*

 

Mumia Abu-Jamal, a journalist and a political prisoner who has been on death row for 28 years, faces a new hearing to determine: will he get a new court hearing to finally decide his sentence, or will he be executed immediately? In it's instructions to the Third Circuit, the Supreme Court made immediate execution the likely outcome.

 

Mountains of evidence, including witness recantations, another man who confessed, and photographic evidence of the crime scene, proves his innocence. Yet state and federal courts, including the Supreme Court, have slammed the door on Mumia. Most of the evidence that could free him has gone unheard,because...

 

*The cops, courts and politicians want Mumia dead!*

 

A politically motivated conspiracy, led by the Fraternal Order of Police, seeks to silence forever this outspoken opponent of war, racism, police brutality and corruption. We have to stop them in their tracks! The courts aren't going to free Mumia. Only mass mobilizations, as in 1995, when we stopped an earlier execution order, and labor mobilizations like the West Coastport shutdown by longshore workers in 1999, can free Mumia.

 

*All Out on November 9th: Mobilize to Free Mumia!*

 

Come to Philadelphia: Third Circuit Court of Appeals, 601 Market St (6th& Market). Hearing starts at 2 PM on Tuesday Nov 9th. Get there early to demonstrate!

 

Bus from New York: Call: 212 330-8029 - leave a message and a number for a return call to reserve a seat on a bus to Philadelphia.

 

For Mass Action, and Labor Action!  

Mumia is innocent!

Free Mumia!  

End the Racist Death Penalty!

 

- This message from: The Labor Action Committee To Free Mumia Abu_jamal PO Box 16222 . Oakland CA 94610 . 510 763-2347 www.laboractionmumia.org

 

Pennsylvania Gov. ED RENDELL Keeps MOVE 9 Locked Up Almost 33 Years!

ONA MOVE!  The MOVE Organization wants to take this opportunity to point out yet another example of the blatant prejudice of government officials when it comes to MOVE. Pennsylvania governor Ed Rendell just commuted the life sentences of three men convicted of murder in the 1970s. The reason he gave is that these men were not the ones that actually pulled the trigger in the murder, they were “accessories”.  In the case of the MOVE 9, however, Rendell was the district attorney who charged and prosecuted 9 of our MOVE sisters and brothers for the murder of one cop who was shot with one bullet from one gun. MOVE women never had weapons charges on them and nobody including any police officials could say that *any* MOVE person shot and killed Policeman James Ramp. In fact, after the trial of the MOVE 9, judge Edwin Malmed who presided over the trial *without a jury* admitted publically on a radio talk show that he didn’t have the “faintest idea” who killed James Ramp. Still the MOVE 9 remains in prison almost 33 years and Rendell who is directly responsible for this blatant injustice has done everything he can to insure that MOVE people remain in prison and never even get paroled, not to mention have their sentences commuted. This is yet another example of the blatent prejudice that MOVE has been exposing in this rotten system and is personified by officials like Ed Rendell. To see the article being referred to just search “ed rendell/commutations”.

FREE THE MOVE 9!   

                                                   
                                                          Merle Africa died on
                                                       March 13, 1998 under            
                                                        suspicious circumstances at
                                                        Muncy Correctional Institution
                                                        after being wrongfully
                                                        imprisoned for almost 20 yrs.

 

 

 

Sample Letters: Parole MOVE Prisoners!

Chairwoman Catherine C. McVey
Board of Probation and Parole
Attn: Inmate Inquiry
1101 South Front Street, Suite 5300
Harrisburg, PA 17104

 

Re: Support for 2009 Parole of Eight Prisoners:

 

Debbie Sims Africa #006307, Janet Holloway Africa #006308, Janine Phillips Africa #006309, Michael Davis Africa #AM-4973, Charles Sims Africa #AM-4975, William Phillips Africa #AM-4984, Delbert Orr Africa #AM-4985, and Edward Goodman Africa #AM-4974


Dear Members of the Board,
Please parole Chuck, Debbie, Delbert, Eddie, Janet, Janine, Mike, and Phil Africa this year. They have caused no major disciplinary problems over the past three decades. They have spent most of their lives in prison; please allow them to be a part of and contribute to society as free citizens. People around the world, myself included, have many reasons for supporting parole for these eight prisoners.

 

Pertaining to the conviction: I believe in the innocence of the MOVE 9. Notwithstanding their innocence, MOVE 9's right to due process, their opportunity to defend themselves to charges for which they have now been imprisoned for three decades, was grossly violated.

 

The sentencing judge stated publicly that he did not have the faintest idea who shot the one bullet that killed Officer Ramp. Nine people cannot fire one bullet.

-- Officer Ramp was more likely shot by police "friendly fire," because it would have been ballistically impossible for MOVE to have shot Ramp, who was across the street from MOVE's house. Because of MOVE's position in the basement, bullets coming from there would have had an upward trajectory; yet the medical examiner testified that the bullet entered Ramp's “chest from in front and coursed horizontally without deviation up or down.” Even the authenticity of official ballistics are in dispute. At a pre-trial hearing, in open court, the Judge allowed the prosecutor to literally use a pencil and eraser to change the medical examiner's report to conform with the medical examiner's testimony about the bullet's trajectory.

-- This theory about the bullet's trajectory could have been tested, but the city illegally demolished MOVE's house that very day, and police did nothing to preserve the crime scene- no inscribed chalk marks or measured ballistic angles. A few days before, a Philadelphia judge had signed an order barring the city from destroying the MOVE house, but this order was violated. In a preliminary hearing on a Motion to Dismiss, MOVE unsuccessfully argued that the city's destruction of their home prevented them from proving that it was physically impossible for MOVE to have shot Ramp.

 

MOVE prisoners have provided immense benefits to various communities. Even in prison, the MOVE 9 have kept down gang/racial violence in their prisons (as outside, they had peacefully settled gang wars/racial violence on the streets), helped female and male inmates establish relationships with their children outside of the prisons, cured fellow inmates of drug addiction and alcoholism, and helped incarcerated offenders meet parole requirements through a rehabilitation program.

 

The MOVE 9 have caused NO major disciplinary problems. Indeed, nowadays, inmates and guards look up to the MOVE 9 prisoners with admiration in prisons across Pennsylvania.

 

The MOVE 9, including Merle Africa who died in prison, have displayed model behavior and have served 2-3 times the standard sentences pursuant to their convictions. There is no reason the MOVE prisoners should be denied parole.

 

In the past, MOVE prisoners have been unfairly required to renounce MOVE and their deeply held religious beliefs, in order to be paroled. MOVE prisoners should be paroled and must not be subject to the optional stipulations, which are violations of First Amendment and other rights protected by the U.S. Constitution.

The “taking responsibility” stipulation unconstitutionally forces a prisoner to admit guilt in order to be granted parole. The above-named prisoners have always maintained their innocence. The First and Fifth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution clearly establish that it is illegal for you (or any government agent) to demand an admittance of guilt and/or to prolong imprisonment based on prisoners maintaining their innocence.


The “serious nature of offense” stipulation is also unfair and, moreover, unconstitutional. Things like the nature and the circumstances of the offense(s) were already taken into account when the judge sentenced the MOVE 9. To use this stipulation to deny the MOVE members parole is to re-sentence them.

 

Please do not impose these illegal stipulations.

 

In all respect and sincerity, please allow the surviving MOVE 9 members to return home to their families. Each of them has proven to be a valuable contribution to society- inside and outside of the Prisons.

SINCERELY,

[YOUR SIGNATURE]

[YOUR PRINTED NAME]

[YOUR ADDRESS]

[DATE]


Strong and Short Letter

TO THE PAROLE BOARD

We are the passionate supporters of Debbie Sims Africa #006307, Janet Holloway Africa #006308, Janine Phillips Africa #006309, Michael Davis Africa #AM-4973, Charles Sims Africa #AM-4975, William Phillips Africa #AM-4984, Delbert Orr Africa #AM-4985, and Edward Goodman Africa #AM-4974. We would like to see their case overturned or at the very least have them paroled at THIS TIME. They have spent more of their lives in prison than as free citizens; convicted of crimes they did not commit. Up until now, all eight prisoners (nine including Merle Africa who died in prison) have been surviving persecution and the complete denial of their essential liberties. This appalling situation has touched our lives and we are willing to do what it takes to see the MOVE prisoners released. We hope that you will also see the imprisonment of the MOVE 9 as a tragedy and do everything in your power to ensure their immediate release. It is imperative that the surviving MOVE members be allowed to return to their families now. We hope you will hear our words and act with all the seriousness and reverence possible for the lives of these amazing people.


With Sincerity,

[Signature, printed name, mailing address]

 

To be sent to :

Chairperson Catherine C. McVey
and Board Members:  Fox, Green,
Imboden, Mangino, Martinez
Massaro, Viglione, & White
Board of Probation and Parole
Attn: Inmate Inquiry
1101 South Front Street, Suite 5300
Harrisburg, PA 17104

(and a copy to MOVE to make sure it goes in each prisoner's file)

_______________________________________________

 

Below, for sending TO PENNSYLVANIA POLITICIANS:

 


We are the passionate supporters of Debbie Sims Africa, Janet Holloway Africa, Janine Phillips Africa, Michael Davis Africa, Charles Sims Africa, William Phillips Africa, Delbert Orr Africa, and Edward Goodman Africa, the surviving members of the MOVE 9 who have been incarcerated in Pennsylvania prisons for 31 years. We would like to see their case overturned or at the very least have them paroled at THIS TIME. They have spent more of their lives in prison than as free citizens; convicted of crimes they did not commit. Up until now, all eight prisoners (nine including Merle Africa who died in prison) have been surviving persecution and the complete denial of their essential liberties. This appalling situation has touched our lives and we are willing to do what it takes to see the MOVE prisoners released. We hope that you will also see the imprisonment of the MOVE 9 as a tragedy and do everything in your power to ensure their immediate release. It is imperative that the surviving MOVE members be allowed to return to their families now. We hope you will hear our words and act with all the seriousness and reverence possible for the lives of these amazing people.

With Sincerity,

[Signature, printed name, mailing address]

 

Send to:

Mayor Michael Nutter
City Hall
Office of Mayor, Rm#215
Philadelphia, PA  19107

 

Governer Ed Rendell
225 Main Capitol Building
Harrisburg, PA  17120

 

District Attorney
Lynne Abraham
Three South Penn Square
Philadelphia, PA  19107-3499

 

 

THE PRISON, by Mumia Abu-Jamal 12-17-11 [audio and update included]

 The Prison
[col. writ. 12/17/11] (c) '11 Mumia Abu-Jamal
 
Every prison is the same; and every prison is different.
Every prison has its own mythos, (think Alcatraz, Sing Sing, Attica), its own rhythm. hard, cool, tight, relaxed, severe or super max. And every prison is run by class -as in how courts or administrators have classified a crime according to whose interests are threatened.
 
For example, in every 'hole" in the State, where all Death Rows are sited, men and women with the worst sentences live the least contentious lives. If they can afford it, (really if their family can), they TV, radio and other amenities -if they can afford it. Some work prison jobs for the glorious wage of around $35 to $50 a month (yes, a month) There, every mind is attuned to the ultimate sentence -death - and against such an immensity, amenities seem trivial.
 
Yet Death Row is a class (as in classification) and beyond it lies a chasm of classifications that are as maddening as they are mundane - AC (Administrative Custody), DC (Disciplinary Custody), PC (Protective Custody), and beyond.

All are lock-up statuses, all have their distinct rules of what is or isn't allowed, and all have degrees of repression.
 
Every major U.S. history book has described America as virtually classless, with rigid class distinctions more a British or European thing. How then can a Nation that claimed classlessness give birth to such institutions that are so riddled with class differentiations?
 
Because America was never classless, and not only did it have rigid classes, it had (and has), caste, more rigid than stone. Millions of Blacks live in such a caste, as noted recently in Michelle Alexander's excellent work, The New Jim Crow.
 
The ruling, wealthy class built prisons and courts to protect them and their wealth from the masses. They have also built the ideological illusion of classlessness, which is maintained through their media. They brayed about freedom, while erecting the most massive prison complex (the prison-industrial-complex) this earth has ever seen.
 
They built Prison Nation.
 
(c) '11 maj

Download the Mp3 of Mumia's above radio commentary

Mumia Abu-Jamal was transfered on Wed December 12th from death row at SCI Greene in Waynesburg PA to SCI Mahanoy in Frackville PA. He remains in Administrative Custody, which has severe restrictions. He has not been able to reach anyone by phone and has had limited visits. Even though he is not technically on Death Row, Mumia remains in solitary confinement. For the first few days of his confinement he had eight sheets of paper and a rubber pen. He now has access to four books and more paper. His visits are still non-contact, behind plexiglass and he is shackled hands in front him with leg irons during these non-contact visits. During his seven hour ride from one rural prison to another he was able to see rolling hills of grass, cows, trees, and the open sky. This is the first time he has been outside of solitary confinement on death row in over fifteen years.

 

Note from Mumia:
“Well I am here at SCI Mahanoy (accent 1st syllable “Mah-ha-nay) or “slo-death row’: I rapped with two people pre-Mahanoy who told me that the event in Philadelphia was off the hook! I wish I coulda seen it! Shit I wish I was there! This joint is a country joint like Greene but they don’t feel as outwardly “country” as Green (tho they are). Greene guards dig country music; These dudes are generally younger like top 40. But its definitely got a Greene vibe- I think of it as “son of Greene.” I am skimpin ona paper cuz I only got 2 pp left. Give my love to alla peeps” Mu (Mumia Abu-Jamal).

http://www.prisonradio.org/media/audio/prison-nation-12-27-2011

Toy Soldiers, by Mumia Abu-Jamal 12/17/11

According to recent news accounts, shattered and shredded body parts and remains of U.S. servicemen were found in a landfill.

 

Despite political spins, this sobering image is a telling, true-life metaphor for what those in power really think of soldiers, many of whom are but boys and girls freshly loosed from High School.

 

In recent years, politicians, especially when on TV or radio talk shows, are apt to say, when addressing a vet, "I thank you for your service."  In truth, this is robot-talk, kind of like when a parrot is trained to say, "Hello!", and about as meaningful.

 

The American poet, e.e. cummings once said, " A politician is an arse upon which everyone has sat, except a man."

 

John Africa said, "A politician will tell you he wasn't born of a woman, if it'll get you to vote for him."

 

In these passing years, since 9/11, wars have been fought that have devastated  countries, economies, and world peace. Untold thousands have died, many for nothing more, nor less, than American paranoia. Thousands of U.S. soldiers have died defending American lies.

 

And tens of thousands have returned, bodies, minds, souls shattered by political calculations driven by arrogance, greed and sheer stupidity. Thousands of marriages have ended in divorce because of forced years apart, and families have been broken asunder because some greasy politician wanted to play 'War-President' (or Senator, or Representative.)

 

In a real sense, military body parts tossed into landfills as trash, is more than metaphor.

 

It is truth.

 

(c) '11 maj

...

Mumia's Audio Recording of "Toy Soldiers"

URGENT: Nov 9 Hearing to decide between execution or life without parole.

From the Global Women's Strike

 

URGENT...URGENT...URGENT

On Tuesday November 9, an oral hearing in front of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit in Philadelphia will decide whether award-winning journalist and former Black Panther Mumia Abu-Jamal will face execution, despite compelling evidence of his innocence, or be given life without parole.  Demonstrations and other events in support of Mumia are being organized across the US and in other countries (see list below).  The Global Women's Strike (GWS), Women of Color in the GWS, and Payday men’s network who have worked with Mumia for a new trial will be attending the rally and hearing in Philadelphia, as well as participating in a protest outside the US Embassy in London England.  We urge you to show your support.  

Mumia, as he is known to millions, was wrongly convicted in 1982 of killing a policeman in a trial steeped in racism. He has spent the last 29 years on Pennsylvania’s death row.  In 2008, a crucial appeal on the grounds of racism in jury selection was rejected. In January 2010 progress on his case was again blocked by the US Supreme Court which sent a decision on the death penalty back to the lower courts, where his case will be heard this Tuesday. According to his attorneys, Mumia is now 'in the greatest danger since his 1981 arrest.’

Mumia's fight for a new trial has won the support of tens of thousands around the world, including Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Alice Walker, Sister Helen Prejean, Danny Glover, Amnesty International . . . In 2008 over 150 UK lawyers wrote highlighting the shocking racism of the case and asking the US courts for redress.

Mumia inspires determined and dedicated support because he is a distinguished and remarkable man.  He uses his talents and energy to strengthen struggles for justice all over the world.  The fate of many others hangs in the balance.

·           Known as the “Voice of the Voiceless”, Mumia is at the forefront of a growing movement against the death penalty.  If Mumia is executed despite compelling evidence of his innocence, this will be a precedent for many thousands to pay with their lives.  This will start with the murder by US authorities of the 3370 people on death row, most of whom are Black and other people of color. 

·           Issues in his case, such as racism in jury selection (RJS), are central to thousands of other legal cases.  RJS is a crucial aspect of US racism: if you’re Black you can be president, but unless you’re president, racism can still keep you off a jury; and if you’re accused of a crime, racism can impose a jury likely to convict whatever the evidence. The policeman who was caught on video shooting Oscar Grant in the back was sentenced to just two years in prison.

·           Mumia’s case is a key test of judicial killing.  The efforts of police, prosecution and courts to deny him a fair trial and execute him show that this outstanding journalist is being tried for exposing racism, police brutality and corruption, and for his opposition to US government policies and practices. To allow the US to dispose of its critics in this way endangers us all.

For these reasons and more, on November 9, thousands of people around the world will be supporting Mumia’s right to be heard and for justice. 

Rallies and events in support of Mumia

Detroit, MI
Tues, Nov 9, 4:30pm 
Federal Court Bldg., W. Lafayette at Washington Blvd., Downtown Detroit,
313.671.3715, panw@africamail.com

Houston, TX
Mon, Nov 8  Teach-in
Tues, Nov 9  March

Oakland, CA
Tues, Nov 9, 12pm
14th and Broadway, 510-763-2347

San Francisco, CA
Tues, Nov 9, 7pm
Centro del Pueblo, 474 Valencia Street, SF, CA, 510-268-9429

Protests scheduled at US consulates in France on Nov 9 in:
Paris, 6 PM, Place de la Concorde
Bordeaux
Lyon
Marseille
Nice

Rennes
Strasbourg
Toulouse

London , UK 
Tues, Nov 9, 5-7PM
Demonstration  Outside the US Embassy, 24 Grosvenor Sq, London W1
Contact: ThePanAfrikanVoice@gmail.com  07597078221/07949738851 

 


Jailhouse Lawyers, Prisoners Defending Prisoners v the USA, Mumia’s most recent groundbreaking publication, already published in the US and due out soon in the UK, illustrates the courageous efforts of fellow prisoners who learn the law to win justice for themselves and others.  The UK introduction by its editor Selma James (GWS) who urged Mumia to write the book, presents the parallel universe of UK jailhouse lawyers who, like their US counterparts, are leading a justice movement inside prisons.

Global Women’s Strike is an international network of women whose strategy for change is Invest in Caring not Killing.
In Philadelphia philly@globalwomenstrike.net  215-848-1120
In San Francisco  sf@globalwomenstrike.net  415-626-4114
In Los Angeles la@globalwomenstrike.net  323-276-9833

Women of Color in the Global Women's Strike is an autonomous network within the Global Women’s Strike. womenofcolour@globalwomenstrike.net   323-276-9833

Payday Men’s Network campaigns with those who refuse to kill as part of militaries anywhere, and those on death row who refuse to be killed by repressive governments such as the US.  payday@paydaynet.org    215-848-1120

Urgent Update On Mumia Abu Jamal, Dec 8, 2011

On Wednesday December 7, 2011 District Attorney of Philadelphia, Seth Williams, accompanied by Maureen Faulkner, announced at a press conference that he was not pursuing another hearing to reinstate the death penalty for Mumia Abu Jamal.

This means that Mumia is now sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

There is already talk about him now being moved into general population.

Some people may celebrate this as a victory but MOVE is not under any illusions about these treacherous officials, we ain’t fooled one bit by their deviousness. We see this latest decision for exactly what it is- A devious tactic to kill Mumia in a so-called different way.

Officials killed George Jackson in prison, they tried to get several different people to kill Leonard Peltier in prison and MOVE sees the same plan being laid for Mumia. This is personal for these cops and officials, they want Mumia dead just as much today as they have for the past thirty years, nothing has changed. They are furious with Mumia, with all the international support he has, with the strong consistant movement around Mumia. Cops see this as a contest, a contest they are determined to win, any way they can. That’s how sick and petty they are. They can’t stand the fact that Mumia is Black and that he sides with TRUTH over the lies of this system and they wanna take him down, that’s how they determine winning.

These cops and officials KNOW Mumia is innocent just like they know The MOVE 9 is innocent but they don’t care.

They don’t give a damn about innocence or guilt, they don’t give a damn about Mumia’s life, they just want to win, which means killing Mumia. These cops and officials are crazed and outta control about Mumia. They can’t tell you the name of those accused/convicted of killing cops six months ago, a year ago, five years ago but they all know Mumia’s name and they hate him. They’re not like this about other people; Ted Bundy, Lee Harvey Oswald (who was convicted of killing president JFK), Mark David Chapman (who killed John Lennon) or a host of other people accused of/convicted of murder, including baby killers.

Again, MOVE ain’t fooled by their trickery, we’re gonna remain vigilante over Mumia and we remain unrelenting in our fight for Mumia’s release, based on his innocence. We’re gonna expose this devious tactic worldwide for exactly what it is, so if these treacherous misfits try to do ANYTHING to Mumia, they will be exposed to the world for the spineless punk-ass cowards and weaklings that they are.

MOVE and Mumia supporters ain’t never gonna stop!

The International Family And Friends Of Mumia Abu Jamal and The MOVE Org.

 

WHY THE NOVEMBER 9, 2010 HEARING ON MUMIA IS SO CRITICAL

Free Mumia Abu-Jamal Coalition
www.freemumia.com
info@freemumia.com (212)330-8029

The only legal options to be considered at the Third Circuit's November 9 hearing are whether Mumia Abu-Jamal is to be executed or get life in prison without parole. Clearly neither of those two options is acceptable.

To fully grasp the significance of the hearing, one needs to revisit Federal District Court Judge William Yohn, Jr.'s decision of December 18, 2001. In that ruling the judge upheld Mumia's conviction but at the same time threw out his death sentence on the grounds that the verdict form used by the jury for sentencing at his trial violated the U.S. Supreme Court's Mills precedent and therefore entitled Mumia to have his death sentence overturned. Yohn then gave the state 180 days to convene a new jury trial only on the issue of Mumia's penalty, in which the choices would be either death or life in prison without parole. On the other hand, if the state did nothing, Yohn ruled that Mumia would automatically be sentenced to life in prison without parole.

At the time Judge Yohn stayed his ruling on the death sentence while the state appealed his decision to the next higher level of federal court, the Third Circuit Court of Appeals. (At the same time Mumia cross-appealed Judge Yohn's decision upholding Mumia's conviction.) Mumia was therefore never removed from Death row and remains there to this day.

On March 27, 2008, the Third Circuit upheld Yohn's decision on the death penalty on a 3-0 vote. Again the decision was stayed while the state appealed to the highest federal level, the Supreme Court. (In the same decision, the Third Circuit rejected Mumia's appeal on the conviction by 2-1 and, as before, Mumia cross-appealed that ruling.)

On January 10, 2010, the Supreme Court ordered the Third Circuit to reconsider its decision on the death sentence in light of its simultaneously-issued ruling unanimously rejecting an appeal from a white-supremacist named Spisak. That man admitted to killing at least two people in Ohio and openly wished to have murdered more. He had appealed his death sentence also as a violation of Mills, but involving a different aspect of it than Mumia's case. The Sixth Circuit, as did the Third Circuit in Mumia's case, ruled that the death sentence should be vacated, but the Supreme Court ruled that the Mills precedent did not apply in Spisak's case, and that therefore execution rather than life in prison was the appropriate penalty. Based on that decision, the Supreme Court immediately applied the same argument to Mumia's case and asked for the Third Circuit to reconsider the issue of execution for Mumia as well.

Thus, the hearing on November 9th is on Mumia's penalty only. The choices before the court are either to sustain Yohn's and its own earlier decisions or to reinstate the death penalty, clearing the way for Mumia's possible quick execution.

If the Third Circuit reaffirms its earlier decision to sentence Mumia to life in prison without parole, the state will most likely appeal to the Supreme Court. (This is exactly what happened with Spisak, after the Sixth Circuit upheld its own earlier ruling which had overturned the man's death sentence.) But in the unlikely event that the state doesn't appeal, it will then have 180 days to implement Judge Yohn's decision.

Of course if the Third Circuit rules against Mumia, he will appeal to the Supreme Court. However, the odds for relief are small, given the increasingly reactionary nature of that court.

Thus, Mumia's legal situation is extremely dangerous. His life truly is on the line, for no matter how the court rules, the only two choices under this legal system are either execution or life in prison without parole and, for the moment, the prosecution, with all its allies and backers, is fighting very hard for execution.

THAT'S WHY WE ARE CALLING FOR ALL THOSE WHO POSSIBLY CAN TO COME OUT TO PHILADELPHIA WITH US ON THE 9TH. WE MUST STAY THE HANDS OF THE EXECUTIONERS AND PRY OPEN THE PRISON GATES FOR MUMIA'S RELEASE.

FREE MUMIA!
ABOLISH THE RACIST DEATH PENALTY!
FREE ALL POLITICAL PRISONERS!

To make reservations for bus tickets to Philadelphia on November 9th, call 212 330-8029.

CALL and WRITE NOW for the RELEASE of MOVE prisoners!!

DEMAND PAROLE FOR MOVE POLITICAL PRISONERS

 

CALL ! WRITE!

Chairperson Catherine C. McVey of the Pennsylvania Board of Probation and Parole at (717) 787-5699 and get everyone you can to call.

 

Demand parole for MOVE political prisoners!

 

The MOVE 9 are members of the MOVE Organization who have now been unjustly imprisoned for over 30 years for the murder of police officer James Ramp stemming from the 8/8/78 attack on MOVE headquarters. There is ample proof and knowledge that police “friendly fire” killed Ramp and not MOVE as the system wants people to believe.

 

-No reason why MOVE people should not receive parole.

-They have excellent prison records and have kept down racial and gang violence in prison, helped inmates fight drug addiction, mother & fathers establish relationships with their children on the outside, & have been an overall positive influence on the prison population staff and inmates.

 

These points can be used as well when you speak to Chairperson McVey.

So call this Thursday (early since they are 3 hours ahead) and let's tie up the phone lines in support of the MOVE 9.

 

If you are a Facebook member, blog about who you speak to and the response on the Cause page for 'Free the MOVE 9' (and join the cause!). This way we can keep track of the lies these people tell and coordinate our response. Network on other sites, such as MySpace, as well.

 

 

If you're in Humboldt, feel free to make calls (any day) from PARC www.parc.2truth.com/ in Old Town Eureka, CA if you need to!

 

Link for flyer: http://abu-jamal-news.com/docs/m9.pdf

Wallpaper your community, call into radio programs, write letters to the editor.

 

For those of you who cannot phone, PLEASE WRITE.

 

Last year we had and outpouring of letters that showed the breadth and depth of Revolution! Keep it coming.

 

[June 2010 updated list due to one board member change] Along with Chairperson Catherine C. McVey, the other eight Parole Board Members are Charles Fox, Michael L. Green, Jeffrey R. Imboden, Matthew T. Mangino, Benjamin A. Martinez, John Tuttle,  Judy Viglione, Lloyd A. White.

 

It is best for individuals to personally send a letter to Chairperson McVey, and if folks have the resources, to also send a copy to each of the other eight board members, at the same address.

 

[name of Board member] Board of Probation and Parole
Attn: Inmate Inquiry
1101 South Front Street, Suite 5300
Harrisburg, PA 17104

(717) 787-5699

 

However, if individuals lack the resources, the letter can be sent to:

The MOVE Organization
PO Box 19709
Philadelphia, PA, 19143

 

 

We will then send a copy of your letter to all Board Members and also each of the eight MOVE prisoners (so they can present the support letters to their interviewers).

 

 

These next few weeks are crucial. Please spread the word and help in any way you can!

 

Call Redwood Curtain CopWatch and (redwood chapter) Friends of MOVE to help get the word out behind the Redwood Curtain! (707) 633-4493

 

 

Check out Philly IndyMedia for articles, interviews, protests...

http://phillyimc.org/en/node/71304

http://phillyimc.org/en/taxonomy/term/237

 

 

Phone call and send copies of letters to the Senators and House Reps for the state of YOUR RESIDENCE.

 

 

Click HERE for SAMPLE LETTERS 
to the PENNSYLVANIA PAROLE BOARD

 

 

Feel free to personalize your letter, but please keep it polite and respectful.

Address for The MOVE Organization

The MOVE Organization
PO Box 19709
Philadelphia, PA, 19143

Addresses for Pennsylvania Politicians

Here is the June 2010 UPDATED list- There is a new Philadelphia District Attorney.

 

Mayor Michael Nutter
City Hall
Office of Mayor, Rm#215
Philadelphia, PA  19107

 

 

Governer Ed Rendell
225 Main Capitol Building
Harrisburg, PA  17120

 

 

District Attorney
R. Seth Williams
Three South Penn Square
Philadelphia, PA  19107-3499

 

 

Names and Address for Parole Board

Write to:  Chairperson Catherine C. McVey

The other eight Parole Board Members:

Charles Fox
Michael L. Green
Jeffrey R. Imboden
Matthew T. Mangino
Benjamin A. Martinez
Gerard N.Massaro
Judy Viglione
Lloyd A. White.

 


It is best for individuals to personally send a letter to Chairperson McVey, and if folks have the resources, to also send a copy to each of the other eight board members, at the same address.

 

 

ADDRESS:

[name of Board member]
Board of Probation and Parole
Attn: Inmate Inquiry
1101 South Front Street, Suite 5300
Harrisburg, PA 17104

 

STATEMENT from MOVE prisoners Debbi Sims Africa, Janine Phillips Africa, Merle Austin Africa, and Janet Holloway Africa

http://www.prisonactivist.org/archive/pps+pows/MOVE/debbi-sims-africa-st.html

[Editor's note: Since this statement was written, Merle Austin Africa joined the ancestors. She died in prison, March 13, 1998.]

Excerpts from John Africa's Teaching (in italics):

Revolution is not a word but an application, it is not war but peace, it does not weaken it strengthens, revolution does not cause separation it generates togetherness, ... revolution is an activity, a generating force that continues generating, continues activating, continues togetherness, solidarity will never be realized so long as geography is imperative, solidarity is unity, without unity you can 't have revolution, ... revolution is organization just as solidarity is togetherness,... the word people should be a symbol of identity which should unite people and dispel war but to call everybody a person and go to war against people is to say that people are compelled to conflict makin peace hopeless and everything people are striving to make, to have, to be, ... if we expect to accomplish the defeat of oppression, we are going to have to understand the power of assertion, a single mind is an assertive mind, when we think as one we are as no other, when we think as one another we're defeated because one is one and another is something other than one, this ain't no word game, revolution is not a game no more than words are innocent, ... solidarity ain't a word, solidarity is a principle that exists despite words, and will exist when words have ceased, ... revolution ain't a principle that is applied when the oppressor is oppressing, revolution is the principle of freedom even when the oppressor does not exist, revolution simply means to revolute, activate, generate, move, so long as you are moving you are free but when you are not moving you are in bondage, a revolutionary is very simply the person that understands revolution, the person that understands to move is to be fit, to be fit is to be strong, to be strong is to demonstrate strong committment to the principle of strength, the principle of fitness, the principle of revolution, the principle of freedom.... when oppression oppresses people to revolt, the way of true revolution is to press on with examples of revolution so that when a people rebel they will not be discouraged by seein no way out except to go back to the very adversary they're rebelling against, ... a revolution must then be willing to apply this principle so that people can be set to one aim, the aim of revolution for it is this single aim that will thrust you onward when all else fails, when people are divided commitment is severed and the aim is divided, it is necessary to understand this when involving ourselves in revolution, many aims drawing from one energy source defeats this source by exhausting its energy, one aim is all powerful when all energy is concentrated in one, ... the total aim is as raw power, for the total aim is total energy, totality directed one wall and when this is understood in conjunction with the oppressed s restrained, it is understood that as total direction the oppressed thee restrained have total power that must be directed in the way of revolution with understanding that the restrained and oppressed is like a dammed up wild river that is only to be turned loose and directed, a strategic revolutionary is the pivotal point in a restrained society that pivots the restrained in the way of revolution by informing the restrained of the power of freedom through examples of freedom against examples of slavery, ... a single bullet from a gun will knock you down but spread the powder from that bullet to five other bullets and the single bullet has lost its punch for you no longer have one strong bullet you have five weak bullets and when called on to do the work necessary in revolution the gun will fail you because the power of the bullet have been split five ways and will fall short of its target, this is when the principle of revolution, oppressed people is like a single bullet and Mien aimed correctly will knock down thee oppressor without fail....

This is from the teaching of John Africa.
Long live John Africa the coordinator forever!

The MOVE organization is trained to be detailed, thorough, strategic minded and aggressive, MOVE is strong willed, clear visioned, one minded, true in dedication, MOVE don't stagger, waver, stumble or fall short, with the MOVE organization a step forward is a step gained and a step lost for the svstem because the MOVE organization will not take a step backwards, our aim is revolution, our trust is momma, our drive is consistency, our target this system and we will not be stopped for we have the courage of life, the understanding of true law and the power of god in both fists.... end quote John Africa, Long live John Africa!

Move people ain't in prison for committing no crime, we ain't criminals, we're in prison for putting out the truth about this corrupt government, for confronting this lying murdering government uncompromisingly. The above ground chapter of THE MOVE ORGANIZATION has been in Phila. for over 20 years and in these 20 years, nobody has ever heard of MOVE people murdering raping or robbing nobody. MOVE people ain't got no history of crime, the only example people see in MOVE is revolution, all people ever hear about MOVE or see MOVE do is confront injustice, police brutality, corrupt politicians and judges and fight against the abuse and exploitation of all forms of life. All people hear about this government thorough or see in this government is corruption, oppression, murder, theft, fraud, lies and disappointment. Everybody complains about this rotten government yet this government have labeled MOVE as criminal and people believe them. Phila. officials got warrants from Phila. judges to put up a starvation blockade around our house in 1978 knowing there were pregnant women and breast-feeding women in the house and the police brutally beat and arrested anybody who tried to give us food. Phila. officials got illegal warrants from Phila. judges to send in their cops to attack our house at 3:00 in the morning on 8-8-78. The cops in their frenzy to kill MOVE people, ended up shooting their own police and firemen and killing one of their cops. Then Phila. officials took MOVE in front of these same Phila. judges who framed us, charged us with murder, sentenced us to a total of 900 years in prison when these judges didn't see MOVE do a damn thing, said we had a fair trial and people believed this. That's why for 16 years MOVE people have had to burn energy giving people information and details about the MOVE 9 situation to convince people that MOVE is innocent and this government is lying. People shouldn't be demanding that MOVE explain our position people should be demanding that this government explain its persecution of MOVE. People should be demanding this government explain how Judge Malmed sentenced 9 people to 30 100 years each in prison for the shooting of one cop, one time with one bullet. People should be demanding this government explain how MOVE people were convicted at all when the judge admitted on national radio the day after sentencing MOVE to prison, that he didn't know who shot that cop 8-8-78. Yet this ain't the case, this system lied and said MOVE is guilty and people have taken the system's word. People have accepted the word of known liars as if it is the truth. Everybody knows MOVE is against this system and everybody knows what this system does to people who go against it. This ain't just a MOVE issue, this is an issue of the oppressed against the oppressor. Whenever people fight against oppression, the oppressor has historically used the same tactic: beat' em into submission, if this don't work they exterminate those that are courageous enough to fight and those that escape being murdered are labeled as criminals and put into jail until they are too old to fight anymore or for the rest of their lives. This is the tactic this system has been implementing since its inception and people have got to stop being duped by this government. The black South Africans didn't listen to the oppressive government of South Africa when they labeled the freedom fighters in that country as criminals. The black slaves in this country didn't believe the slave-masters when they said Nat Turner was a criminal. Americans didn't listen to the British government when they said the American revolutionaries were criminal for going against the king of England. It's no way the oppressed should be taking the word of the oppressor over somebody who is being oppressed just like them. Its like a Jew taking Hitler's word over another Jew during the holocaust. John Africa teaches that the weapon this system uses to do this is "divide and conquer." As long as this system can keep people disjointed and fighting among themselves their energy will be divided and their focus will never be on the real enemy, this system. It's time people unite, take a stand against injustice by not feeding this system their strength. Demand these judges give answers, speak to the wrong they're doing to people, push them to do what's right. Make these judges qualify how they can sentence poor unofficial people to 5, 10, 20, 100 years in prison for a crime they didn't see, just on the word of a cop and then acquit cops that are caught on TV brutally beating, and attempting to murder people, like the cops that beat Delbert Africa and Rodney King. People should do whatever yall gotta do to get justice and don't stop till you get it. People gotta stop believing these judges is right, just, fair, because until you do, you're always gong to have judges sanctioning May 13th bombings, Rodney King beatings, the extermination of the SLA, the Black Panthers, Wounded Knee, and another whole race of people virtually extinct and enslaved on reservations like the government has the American Indians.

As long as we are MOVE members there is no legal justice in this system for MOVE and the only way they're gonna do right by MOVE is through pressure, is if people put pressure on this government to do what's right, because legally they never had a case to begin with. People can put pressure on officials through consistent action by writing letters to politicians; making phone calls to Penna. Sen. Arlen Spector and Phil. D.A. Lynn Abraham, or writing the judge, Joseph Papalini, himself and tell him how you feel as a MOVE supporter, or as a concerned citizen who believes in what's right. At this point Judge Joseph Papalini (PCRA Unit, 758 City Hall, Phila. Pa. 19107), is the judge that will hear PCRA-appellate hearings. They are being scheduled for the MOVE 9 sometime this year. Papalini has the authority to do whatever he wants to do:

  1. Reverse Judge Malmed's guilty verdict and release all MOVE members immediately based on non-effective evidence.
  2. Give us another trial.
  3. Reduce the sentence or give us time served.

The decision is in his hands. MOVE is not guilty of nothing wrong. We are not in prison because we allegedly killed nobody. We are in prison because we are MOVE members and that's what people need to understand. If anybody should be in prison, it is those Phila. city officials and cops who cold bloodily murdered 11 MOVE people on May 13, 1985, including children on Osage Ave. in the face of the world, but they are walking the streets and have never been arrested. MOVE people are political prisoners. MOVE is not a threat to the people. Once agin, these officials are being given the opportunity to do their job, to do right by MOVE or once again admit that this system of american democracy is a failure, unjust, prejudiced religious persecutors, wrong. To quote John Africa, quote,

... When an innocent person is sent to prison like guilty the principle of innocence is under attack and the innocence of all innocent is assaulted, an innocent example is a free example, those who are silent about the condition of the innocent is silent about the position of freedom, when innocence is jailed it ain't just John Brown that is jailed, freedom is jailed because freedom does not stop with John Brown's mother ...

end quote John Africa

Long Live John Africa Forever!

The MOVE ORGANIZATION

In MOVE law we trust!
All praises to the order of life!
The power of truth is final!
Long live MOVE!
Long live John Africa's Revolution!
Long live John Africa!
Long live John Africa!
Long live John Africa the coordinator forever!


See also excerpts of the MOVE story "Who Are the MOVE 9?" and statements from Charles Sims Africa; Merle Africa,; Ramona Africa, and Phil Africa.

 

This page is maintained by the Prison Activist Resource Center

MOVE newsletter (2008) for the International Friends of the MOVE Organization

CLICK HERE- CHECK IT OUT!!

 

Lots to read.  Please know that some of the addresses listed in this 2008 zine/newsletter  have since changed. 

 

The correct addresses can be found HERE for the MOVE members in prison


and HERE for The MOVE Organization


and HERE for the Parole Board


and HERE for the Philadlephia/Pennsylvania politicians

a SUMMARY

AttachmentSize
PDF icon summary, MOVE.pdf86.21 KB

THE MOVE 9: DELBERT ORR AFRICA , WILLIAM PHILIPS AFRICA , EDWARD GOODMAN AFRICA, CHARLES SIMS AFRICA, MICHAEL DAVIS AFRICA, DEBBIE SIMS AFRICA, JANINE PHILIPS AFRICA, JANET HOLLOWAY AFRICA, AND MERLE AFRICA

 

Over many years Philadelphia's power structure earned itself a reputation for brutal treatment of radical and revolutionary Black movements. In 1966 the Philadelphia police, under their notorious chief Frank Rizzo, raided four meeting places of the civil rights organization SNCC, planting dynamite in one of the locations to justify further repression. In 1970 Rizzo's men raided three offices of the Black Panther Party. Many people still remember with anger how Philly police beat the arrested Panthers, then forced them to strip off their clothes and line up naked in public.

 

In the 1970s then-Mayor Rizzo attacked a new organization, MOVE, that was emerging from Philadelphia's Black community. MOVE refused to respect present-day America and its prevailing values. Its members openly defied official power and tirelessly preached against a system that they considered utterly corrupt, enslaving, and destructive of life on this planet, particularly through the use of modern technology. When threatened and confronted by the authorities, they did not back down. MOVE has always exposed the rulers of this society for the liars, racists and murderers that they are.

 

1978: Confrontations escalated between MOVE and the Philadelphia power structure. MOVE members were constantly arrested and harassed. In late 1977 the police launched a siege of the MOVE house in the neighborhood called Powelton Village. After ten months of continuous conflict, 600 police attacked MOVE's house. Gunfire erupted. MOVE members were brutalized and arrested.

 

On August 8, 1978 at about five in the morning, MOVE members awoke by unfamiliar sounds and voices. Several hundred police officers had surrounded their Powelton Village home in an attempt to permanently evict the MOVE from their home. By the time MOVE members gathered children and pets into the basement, the police had already begun smashing windows and yelling over a loud speaker. Before they knew it, water was coming through the holes where the windows used to be. The police then began shooting tear gas and bullets into the MOVE home. The police (who had surrounded the house) were firing into it while telling MOVE members to come out. When MOVE members started to surrender, a Philly police officer had been shot (from above and behind) and killed.

 

All five MOVE men were beaten badly, several times, but only Delbert’s beating was caught on camera. There were 7 women and 5 men arrested. Four MOVE women and five MOVE men were convicted and sentenced to 30-100 years each. None of the MOVE 9 had weapons charges and witnesses testified that the only people with weapons were the cops.

 

In 1981 the authorities attacked Mumia Abu-Jamal, a well respected radio reporter and MOVE supporter. Mumia was shot, beaten, and framed for murder by the police.

 

In the face of all this repression, MOVE continued to fight to free Mumia and its imprisoned family members, the “MOVE 9.” After MOVE moved into a new house on Osage Avenue, police agents worked with conservative elements in the surrounding community to create a new confrontation with MOVE.

 

The Bombing in West Philly: By dawn, May 13, 1985, after months of planning, hundreds of police armed with automatic weapons had surrounded the MOVE house at 6221 Osage. Police Commissioner Sambor shouted through a bullhorn: "Attention, MOVE! This is America! You have to abide by the laws of the United States." During the hours that followed, the police pounded the MOVE house with thousands of bullets. Then, at 5:25 in the early evening, a police helicopter dropped a bomb onto MOVE's roof---packed with C-4 military explosive provided by the FBI. The explosion ignited a firestorm. The MOVE house burned, and flames spread to the surrounding row houses. Firefighters were ordered to let the fire burn.

 

The surrounding block of homes--61 houses in all--were destroyed. Over 200 people were suddenly homeless. It was a hard lesson for neighborhood residents who had collaborated with the police against MOVE.

 

Only two MOVE family members survived: Ramona Africa, age 30, and Birdie Africa, age 13. Intense police sniper fire stopped the other MOVE members from escaping. Several were shot. Those forced back in the building were incinerated.

 

The MOVE 9 have been in prison since 1978 and have been forced to watch their loved ones being attacked by the state.

 

On March 13, 1998, Merle Africa died in prison under questionable circumstances.

~~~~

Please do what you can to spread the word
to help the surviving MOVE prisoners get out

and get Mumia off of death row!

Merle Africa Speaks About Her Life

Merle Africa speaks about her life

My name is Merle Africa, disciple of JOHN AFRICA and Minister of Administrative Coordination. I am a 45 year old woman of color living in the US. I’ve been a member of the MOVE Organization since 1973 and these 22 years have been the most satisfying and happiest I have ever experienced despite the 18 years unjustly spent in prison and vicious brutal murder of my family experienced at the hands of the system, May 13, 1985.

 

Before joining MOVE, I had relatively the same type of existence as everybody else in the system; I went to schools in Phila., graduated, got a secretarial job at Temple University, but I had plenty of problems with no hope of finding solutions for them. My only so-called relief, outlet to these problems was intoxication. I was an alcoholic from the age of 8 and habitual drug addict since the age of 15.

 

My father was a heavy drinker and along with other relatives, as a young child they would let me drink form their glasses, taking a sip until I had acquired a taste for liquor and as the years
passed, I drank at home and at friends’ homes until I turned into a drunken alcoholic.

 

Children are supposed to be happy, problem-free, but I was far from happy. I was fat and mentally unstable. I have a younger sister (who isn’t in MOVE) who I fought constantly, along with my parents because I thought they preferred her to me, I thought they didn’t love me. I didn’t trust them and felt I couldn’t get any relief by talking to them.

 

By the time I entered my teens, I was suffering from severe bouts of depression, hallucination and paranoia. I was suicidal, went on eating binges and was bulimic. I also suffered from violent outbursts of temper where I’d try to hurt my mom and sister and tried to hurt myself by banging my head on the floor until it bled.

 

I realize now the problems I had were because I was so unhappy, dissatisfied, frustrated and mentally demolished. I needed love, understanding, and attention which I wasn’t getting at home,
only vicious abusive beatings from my father to make me tow the line. I didn’t get any relief from talking to psychiatrists and the group therapy sessions my mother took me to. In the meantime, I was still drinking and by 15 I started smoking pot, taking pills (diet and sedatives), snorting speed, cocaine and heroin. I took any drug I could get my hands on, from angel dust to acid because I wanted desperately to escape the pain I was experiencing. I was suicidal because I felt I had no reason to live and when I asked my psychiatrists to explain my purpose in life, they had no answer, just told my mom I was too violent, too disturbed to live at home, I was dangerous. They didn’t have any solution for me so they kept after her to institutionalize me, which she refused to do.

 

The turning point in my life came when I met MOVE people and started hearing the powerful teaching of JOHN AFRICA.

 

I felt drawn to the true love, sensitivity and family unity I saw in the MOVE people I met and eventually, from talking to MOVE I started going to study sessions to hear the teaching of JOHN AFRICA, MOVE LAW. The information I heard is the most powerful analytical, truthful writing I have ever heard about this system. I was real impressed with the way JOHN AFRICA took the time, had the patience to talk to a mother about her cranky unruly child or listen to JOHN AFRICA speak at meetings giving a couple a solution to a marital problem they were having. Whenever any of us was unhappy or troubled the coordinator always had the patience, the time to talk to us, give us real solutions to our problems, something no doctor, psychiatrist, minister or parent has ever done for anybody before. I kept going to more and more study sessions and other MOVE activities cause I felt drawn to MOVE Law because it is the truth and unlike other organizations I’ve heard of and read about, I realize JOHN AFRICA’s teaching ain’t just a lot of meaningless rhetoric as the newsmedia claimed, but there’s uncompromising power in MOVE Law
and its shown in the family unity, love and sensitivity I’ve experienced and displayed since being in MOVE. I have personally witnessed miracles within myself and other MOVE people. In the
1960’s I had 2 back room abortions performed on me.

 

After the 2nd abortion I almost died from loss of blood. After that I was in constant pain and hospitalized for cysts and boils on my tubes and vaginal area. The doctors I went to couldn’t find a cause for the medical problems I was having. When I got in MOVE, the trouble continued until JOHN AFRICA told me what was wrong. He didn’t physically examine me or run no tests. He told me I had a tumor in my stomach and it was because of the abortions I had had and I hadn’t told him about the abortions. The Coordinator told me what to do, how to eat and said in time I would get better. I was in pain, bed-ridden for months at a time and bleeding, at no time did the coordinator force me to do nothing I didn’t want to do, he didn’t force me to stay in bed; in fact it was the coordinator who told me if I wanted to go to the hospital he would get one of the men to take me and I told him I didn’t want to go, that I trusted him and knew he was the only one who could help me. I put my faith in my belief, in JOHN AFRICA to make me better and he did cause the tumor came out on its own without me ever going back to the hospital for an operation and I’ve never had any more menstrual or stomach problems, no more cysts or boils. Long Live JOHN AFRICA Forever!

 

If it hadn’t been for the healing power of JOHN AFRICA I would be dead. If I hadn’t been in MOVE, by the time the doctors finished probing and experimenting on me with medicine and gadgets the cancer would have spread to the point where the only thing left for me was to say goodbye to my family, cause I didn’t have a chance, but JOHN AFRICA gave me my life back, gave me the opportunity to live for which I am so grateful and why I am so committed to my belief because it works, I’ve seen, felt MOVE Law work for me!

Long Live JOHN AFRICA Forever! Because of his example I know I can always depend on my belief to give me everything I need to keep me healthy, strong and free of mental illness. That’s something nobody can say about anything in this system. I’ve found in MOVE Law my reason for living, satisfaction, happiness and that’s what the whole world is searching for and its available for anybody who wants it. After years of being in the system and abused by men who I thought loved me and were faithful to me, but ultimately left me alone and disillusioned, thanks to JOHN AFRICA and our application of MOVE Law, I finally have a loyal faithful husband and we have a good strong marriage and that’s something every woman longs for in the system.

 

When I look back and see how I was before MOVE and how I am now, I can’t help but give my loyalty, my commitment to JOHN AFRICA, because without him, I would be dead. I feel privileged to be allowed to be a member of MOVE, to help spread the teaching of JOHN AFRICA to the people of the world; to give them the motivation, the will to stop endorsing this system and start fighting it and take back all that it’s taken from us!

~~~~~~

On March 13, 1998, Merle Africa died in prison under suspicious circumstances. 

 

from "Memorial for MOVE members"

By Betsey Piette, Workers World, 28 May 1998

...Among the most moving were statements from "lifers"--women in prison with [Merle] Africa at Muncy, where she had spent 15 years. Through letters and poetry, these women spoke of
Africa's courage, compassion, and uncompromising principles.

One described Merle Africa as "an everyday holiday ... she brought the gifts of joy, knowledge, a listening ear, the discipline of life."...

 

 

20 Years On The MOVE

AttachmentSize
PDF icon 20years.pdf27.17 KB

20 Years on the Move: John Africa's Revolution

The MOVE Organization surfaced in Philadelphia during the early 1970's. Characterized by dreadlock hair, the adopted surname "Africa", a principled unity, and an uncompromising commitment to their belief, members practiced the teachings of MOVE founder John Africa.

 

MOVE's work is to stop industry from poisoning the air, the water, the soil, and to put an end to the enslavement of life - people, animals, any form of life. the purpose of John Africa's revolution is to show people through John Africa's teaching, the truth - that this system is the cause of all their problems (alcoholism, drug addiction, unemployment, wife abuse, child pornography, every problem in the world) and to set the example of revolution for people to follow when they realize how they've been oppressed, repressed, duped, tricked by this system, this government and see the need to rid themselves of this cancerous system as MOVE does. MOVE statement

 

During the early 1970's MOVE was based in the Powelton Village section of West Philadelphia (309 N. 33rd St.). Members had a preference for hard physical work and were constantly chopping firewood, running dogs, shoveling snow or sweeping the street. MOVE ran a popular car wash at this location, helped homeless people find places to live, assisted the elderly with home repairs, intervened in violence between local gangs and college fraternities, and helped incarcerated offenders meet parole requirements through a rehabilitation program. After adopting MOVE's way of natural living, many individuals overcame past problems of drug addiction, physical disabilities, infertility and alcoholism. MOVE welcomed dissenting views as an opportunity to showcase their belief and sharpen their oratory skills which they knew would be tested in their revolutionary struggle. MOVE presented their views at public forums and lectures of noted authorities including Dick Gregory, Alan Watts, Jane Fonda, Julian Bond, Richie Havens, Walter Mondale, Roy Wilkins, Buckminster Fuller, Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, Caesar Chavez and Russell Means, and none could refute John Africa's teachings. By 1974 MOVE was appearing in public with increasing frequency.

 

If our profanity offends you, look around you and see how destructively society is profaning itself. It is the rape of the land, the pollution of the environment, the betrayal and suffering of the masses by corrupt government that is the real obscenity. -- MOVE statement

 

The mainstream media began a long history of distorted MOVE coverage using misquotes, unverified rumors and biased stories. While those who actually met MOVE members could see the remarkable strength and health they exhibited, dehumanizing news accounts perpetrated the falsehood that members never bathed and were diseased.

 

Frank Rizzo, Police Commissioner from 1967-71 was the key figure in Philadelphia government and built his career on opposing black efforts to challenge the status quo. In 1967 Rizzo's first major action as Commissioner had been to halt a peaceful demonstration of some 3500 Black high school students asking for educational reforms and Black Studies programs by unleashing hordes of cops who charged with no provocation and chased students for blocks. Many were beaten. He ran the city with a prominent and heavy-handed police force that had a national reputation for brutality.

 

MOVE launched demonstration after demonstration aimed at focusing attention on police abuses. Community groups across the City sought MOVE's help in setting up demonstrations in their own neighborhoods. As a result of this activism, the police began a concerted campaign of harassment against MOVE, breaking up demonstrations by arresting MOVE members on disorderly conduct charges or violations of whatever local ordinance could be made to apply. On May 18, 1974, Leesing and Janet Africa, both pregnant at the time, were so brutally beaten by Rizzo's police that they both had miscarriages. By 1975, clashes between MOVE and the police reached increasingly brutal proportions, with frequent beatings, arrests and jail stays. On April 29, 1975, Alberta Africa, pregnant at the time, was held spread-eagle by four officers and repeatedly kicked in the stomach and vagina by a matron named Robinson, suffering a miscarriage as a result. Despite police violence against MOVE many MOVE mothers did bear children, including Sue Africa, in spite of several police beatings throughout her pregnancy, had a son, Tomassa, on Aug. 4, 1975 (Tomassa was later murdered by the city on May 13, 1985). Janine Africa's baby, Life Africa, was born March 8, 1976 but murdered by the police less than a month later, when his mother was grabbed by a cop, thrown to the ground with 3 week old Life Africa in her arms and stomped until she was nearly unconscious. The baby's skull was crushed. Police denied that the baby existed because there was no birth certificate.

 

MOVE took on the courts and eventually overwhelmed them, acting as their own attorneys in hundreds of trials and hearings. On November 5, 1976, Rhonda Africa was arrested and brutalized. Nearly 9 months pregnant, Rhonda went into premature labor the next day, giving birth to a bruised and injured baby that soon died. (Rhonda herself was later murdered by the City on May 13, 1985.)

 

On May 20, 1977, MOVE staged a major demonstration demanding the release of their political prisoners and an end to the violent harassment by the City. To keep an increasingly brutal police force at bay, MOVE appeared outside their house with firearms.

 

"We told the cops there wasn't gonna be anymore undercover deaths. This time they better be prepared to murder us in full public view, cause if they came at us with fists, we were gonna come back with fists. If they came with clubs, we'd come back with clubs, and if they came with guns, we'd use guns, too. We don't believe in death-dealing guns, we believe in life. But we knew the cops wouldn't be so quick to attack us if they had to face the same stuff they dished out so casually on unarmed defenseless folk. MOVE

 

To force MOVE members out of their Powelton Village headquarters, Rizzo got court approval to starve them out. On March 16, 1978, the police set up a blockade around the house and shut off water lines. Those inside included pregnant women, nursing babies, children and animals Police arrested anyone who tried to break through the barricades, though some attempts to get food and water to MOVE were successful. During this time MOVE lost the farm they had paying on in Virginia. The blockade lasted almost two months and on April 16, 1978, thousands marched around City Hall protesting the City's action.

 

The City tried to negotiate a settlement. MOVE knew officials could not be trusted but entered into an agreement to expose the City's deceit. Terms of the settlement were publicized May 3, 1978 before MOVE had given final approval. MOVE then told mediators why those in the house could not be legally arrested. When newly installed D.A. Ed Rendell confirmed that the arrest warrants were indeed void as per Rule 1100. Terms were finalized after MOVE had a 90-day deadline for vacating the house deleted from the agreement. To obscure legal improprieties, a gag provision was included to prevent MOVE from talking to the media. Police were allowed to arrest, arraign and release on bail pending appeal, each wanted member in the house. Police searched the house for weapons and found only inoperative ones. The city agreed to dispose of all other pending MOVE cases within 4-6 weeks.

 

On August 2, 1978, Judge DiBona ruled that MOVE had violated the unagreed-to 90-day deadline and the D.A.'s office then solicited MOVE arrest warrants for not vacating the house. The fact that Rendell's office could not legally practice law at a civil proceeding went unpublicized and the media was instrumental in perpetuating the myth that MOVE had agreed to a 90-day time limit. The City was so bent on framing and hunting down MOVE members the DiBona signed bench warrants authorizing police to bring before him practically every known MOVE adult, though over half of them were not in the house and couldn't possibly have violated an order to vacate it.

 

On August 5, Philadelphia authorities, in collaboration with Virginia police, staged a midnight raid on the Richmond home of two MOVE women and 14 children, arresting Gail and Rhonda Africa at gunpoint and returning them to Philadelphia. The legal justification was Gail and Rhonda's alleged failure to leave a house that they weren't within a hundred miles of.

 

In the early morning hours of August 8, hundreds of police and firemen surrounded MOVE headquarters. Using heavy construction equipment they tore down the barricades and knocked out the windows. With guns drawn, over 20 officers entered the first floor of the house, only to find that MOVE had taken refuge in the basement. Fire hoses and deluge guns were then turned on, flooding the basement with water. MOVE adults were forced to hold children and animals in their arms to keep them from drowning. Suddenly gunshots rang out and immediately bullets filled the air as police throughout the area opened fire. Officer James Ramp was struck and killed by a single bullet. Three other policemen and firemen were wounded. MOVE never fired any shots and no MOVE members were arrested with any weapons. 12 adults were arrested, all suffering physical abuse at the hands of the police, and 11 children had been in the house. As news cameras recorded the event, officers Joseph Zagame, Charles Geist, Terrance Mulvihill and Lawrence D'Ulisse severely beat MOVE member Delbert Africa while taking him into custody. Without provocation, Zagame smashed Delbert in the face with a police helmet as D'Ulisse connected with a blow from the butt of a shotgun. This knocked Delbert to the ground and he was then dragged by his hair across the street where the other officers set upon him, savagely kicking him in the head, kidneys and groin.

 

An afternoon conference was held at City Hall during which Police Commissioner Joseph O'Neill said Officer Ramp was killed by a shot in the back. Moments later a typed police press release was distributed stating that Ramp was shot in the chest. Rizzo displayed a table of firearms and claimed they were taken from the MOVE house. Some reporters noted the seemingly new condition of the weapons; others wondered what these guns were doing in the mayor's office rather than impounded in the police crime lab as evidence. No MOVE fingerprints were found on any of these weapons. Although destroying evidence of a crime is illegal, police bulldozed and leveled the house as soon as MOVE members were taken away. No efforts were made to preserve the crime scene, inscribe chalk marks, or measure ballistic angles. MOVE told Judge Merna Marshall that the destruction of the house prevented them from proving that it was impossible for any MOVE member to have shot officer Ramp. The Fred Hampton case in Illinois was cited, where the preservation of the crime scene enabled the estates of Fred Hampton and Mark Clark to prove that all offensive fire came from the police. Judge Marshall denied MOVE's petition and held them over for trial. Three defendants were tried separately and those who disavowed MOVE were released. MOVE protested that they were being held strictly because they were MOVE members rather than on any evidence that they had anything to do with the death of James Ramp. After refusing to disavow MOVE, Consuewella Dotson was later tried and sentenced to 10-20 years. Even though the MOVE members were in the basement when the gunfire occurred and only one bullet struck Ramp, Judge Malmed pronounced the remaining nine defendants guilty of the murder and sentenced each one to 30-100 years. On a radio talk show the next day, a caller (Mumia Abu- Jamal) asked Malmed, "Who shot James Ramp?", he replied, "I have no idea."

 

The police assaults and court hearings continued for several years, and one of the few media people to accurately report on MOVE and make a serious effort to understand the organization was Mumia Abu-Jamal, a highly regarded Philadelphia journalist and president of the Association of Black Journalists. Throughout the 1978 confrontation and resulting trials, Mumia continued to produce in-depth coverage of MOVE issues, often against the directives of his employers. On December 9, 1981, Mumia was found shot through the chest and badly wounded on a downtown Philadelphia street. Nearby lay a police officer, dead from gunshot wounds. During his subsequent arrest and treatment in a hospital, Mumia was abused and beaten by police. Mumia maintained his innocence and conducted his own defense until Judge Albert Sabo ruled he was being disruptive and ordered a court-appointed lawyer to take over the case. Mumia then refused to participate and the events at the crime scene were never fully determined. A jury found him guilty of first degree murder and gave him the death penalty. There has been an international call for the release of Mumia from what is regarded as an unjust sentence based on his association with MOVE.

 

The primary activity of MOVE now became securing the release of innocent members facing not only 30-100 years in prison, but the wrath of a vindictive prison system and its abusive guards. Several members went on hunger strikes to obtain the basic rights other inmates received. In post trial motions, court-appointed lawyers neglected to raise the illegality of the arrest warrants from the 1978 confrontation. Judge Edward Bradley admitted there were inconsistencies but declined to take any action. D.A. Ed Rendell outright refused to meet with MOVE and Councilman Lucien Blackwell and City Council Chairman Joseph Coleman were non-committal. Starting in 1982, MOVE was able to meet several times with City Managing Director Wilson Goode. After consulting a lawyer on MOVE's legal claims, Goode agreed that MOVE was innocent and promised to remedy the situation after he was elected mayor. Media refused to cover the issue and there was blackout on any information about MOVE. MOVE began publishing their own newspaper and using loudspeakers to inform people of the injustice and the City's conspiracy to eliminate them.

In 1984 Wilson Goode became mayor, then quickly reneged on his earlier promise and took no action as another confrontation with MOVE took shape. Anticipating how far the City would go to silence them, MOVE began fortifying their rowhouse at 6221 Osage Avenue in the Cobbs Creek section of West Philadelphia. At the same time, police made preparations for a murderous assault by secretly obtaining from the FBI over 37 pounds of C-4, a powerful military explosive, although this violated police regulations, FBI policies and federal law regarding transfer of explosives. Media suddenly began covering MOVE again, focusing on Osage Avenue neighbors' disagreements with MOVE rather than MOVE's longstanding legal dispute with the City. MOVE held a meeting with neighborhood residents in May, 1984 to explain their position and police stepped up their campaign of intimidation and harassment. Between June and October Alfonso Africa was arrested and beaten bloody several times by police. On August 8, 1984, hundreds of police and firemen spent the day surrounding the Osage block in what came to be viewed as a dry run for the later disaster, but MOVE would not be provoked. MOVE told negotiators they wanted at least one official to honestly investigate the unjust jailing of MOVE members, but officials and the media ignored this. On May 11, 1985, Judge Lynne Abraham signed arrest warrants on charges of disorderly conduct and terroristic threats. On Mother's Day, May 12, police evacuated the 6200 Block of Osage Avenue and towed away parked cars.

 

On Monday, May 13, 1985, police and firemen launched a full scale military assault on the MOVE rowhouse using tear gas, water cannons, shotguns, Uzi's, M-16s, silenced weapons, Browning Automatic Rifles, M-60 machine guns, a 20mm anti- tank gun, and a .50-caliber machine gun. Some of these weapons were illegally obtained with the help of the U.S. Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms Agency. Between 6:00 and 7:30 am police fired over 10,000 rounds of ammunition at the house knowing there were women and children inside. They also tried to blast through the walls with the military explosives the FBI had illegally provided. When none of these measures succeeded in driving MOVE from the house, a state police helicopter was used to drop a bomb on the roof. This started a fire that officials deliberately allowed to burn, burning down the entire block of some 60 homes. MOVE members repeatedly tried to exit but were met with police gunfire which killed some of the adults and children in the alley behind the house. Six adults and five children died. Also on May 13, 1985, police in Chester, PA in cooperation with Philadelphia, used tear gas to storm the Chester home of Alfonso Africa. The only adult present, his wife Mary, was arrested and their 5 children were taken away as police ransacked the house. The legal basis for this action was Judge Lynne Abraham's warrant for Alfonso, although he had been incarcerated since May 8 on charges of threatening officer James McDonnell (who previously shot Alfonso on June 10, 1984).

 

Ramona Africa was charged with conspiracy, riot and multiple counts of simple and aggravated assault. Although no testimony was presented indicating she ever held or fired a weapon, a jury found her guilty and Judge Michael Stiles sentenced her to 16 months to 7 years. Mayor Goode appointed a special commission to investigate the catastrophe, but it had no power to indict. Findings released in March, 1986 were highly critical of City officials and included extensive recommendations, but as years passed these were largely disregarded and forgotten. In 1986, D.A. Ron Castille impanelled a grand jury to investigate criminal wrongdoing on the part of the City. Notwithstanding 11 deaths, 60 homes burned to the ground, unauthorized possession and use of military explosives, and a fire that was deliberately allowed to burn out of control, Castille's grand jury followed his recommendations and returned not a single indictment. A federal grand jury investigating civil rights violations also returned no indictments. None of the investigations looked at earlier legal improprieties.

 

There are currently 9 MOVE members imprisoned by the PA penal system. Locked away in remote areas, far from the public eye, they have endured years of continuous physical and mental harassment. Delbert, Carlos and Chuck Africa were kept in solitary confinement over five years for refusing to violate MOVE belief by cutting their hair. At Muncy prison, MOVE women upheld their religious principles by refusing to give blood samples and were repeatedly put in solitary confinement, sometimes for as long as 3 years. Sadistic prison guards were delighted to inform Delbert, Janet, Sue, Phil, Janine and Consuewella Africa that some of their children were killed in the police assault on May 13, 1985. No MOVE members were involved in a 1989 Camp Hill prison riot, but Chuck Africa was singled out by correctional officers Bray, Cywinski and Lt. Komsisky, and while handcuffed and shackled, Chuck was brutally attacked and beaten. He was then transported incommunicado across the country until lodged at the maximum security prison in Lompoc, CA, until his return to PA 16 months later. Delbert, Phil and Edward Africa were also abruptly transferred out of state and weeks passed before their family learned of their whereabout s. Phil and Edward were shuffled through a number of prisons before arriving at the U.S. Penitentiary at Leavenworth, KS. Delbert was eventually taken to the military prison at Fort Gordon, GA. They spent many months, and in Phil's case, over a year at these locations before being returned to Pennsylvania.

 

Lack of media coverage has given the Parole Board the power to demand the special stipulation for MOVE members at parole hearings that they may be paroled if they agree never again to associate with MOVE, even when the person's husband or wife is a member. All MOVE members have refused this stipulation and are doing/have done their maximum sentences.

 

After the tragic deaths and destruction the city caused in 1985, the vast publicity surrounding the disaster continually overlooked the fact that MOVE's original demand for justice in the 1978 confrontation remained unresolved. Now, Ed Rendell is the mayor of Philadelphia, and Judge Lynne Abraham is now D.A. Lynne Abraham. Judge Sabo has been called out of retirement in the City's efforts to ensure the murder of Mumia-Abu Jamal.MOVE points out that in their over 20-year history, destruction and death have always been the work of the police, so inquiries as to the future likelihood of such occurrences should be directed to city officials. MOVE has never dropped a bomb, burned down a neighborhood or killed anyone, they have only demanded the release of innocent members. The City of Philadelphia has murdered 17 MOVE members, including adults, children, 1 baby and 4 miscarriages.

 

Nine MOVE members remain unjustly incarcerated on 30-100 year sentences.

 

As long as we are alive, we will never abandon our innocent brothers and sisters in jail, and they know we will never abandon them, and this city gonna always have a problem until every last one of our brothers and sisters is home. MOVE statement

 

To order "20 Years on the Move" for a $6.00 donation (discount for bulk orders) and to help in the struggle for justice, contact:Concerned Citizens in Support of MOVE P.O. Box 19709, Philadelphia, PA 19143

The MOVE 9 speak!

AttachmentSize
PDF icon MOVE_Booklet final.pdf841.65 KB

Download this booklet with the biographical writings from the MOVE 9. 

 

The bio's were taken word for word from the website: 
John Africa's MOVE Organization
http://www.onamove.com/

 

In the HOME page, if you click on the photos of each MOVE member, the MOVE 9, who are on the left side of the page, you can also read each of their bios.

 

Go to the MUMIA page to read about Mumia Abu-Jamal- political prisoner who has been locked up since 1981, and is on DEATH ROW.