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they're in there for us. we're out here for them.
by the North American Earth Liberation Prisoners Support Network

It's no exaggeration at this point to say that our planet is in the midst of a serious ecological crisis. All over the globe, every day, the omnicidal plague of industrial civilization continues to spread, driven by economic greed and an insatiable, constantly accelerating demand for energy and resources. And as this cancerous MegaMachine blindly pursues its "scorched Earth policy", entire species are going extinct and entire societies are disappearing, and it's all happening so quickly that there hardly seems time to react.

Yet react we must, assertively and immediately, before the biosphere is poisoned and fouled beyond repair and while we still have something worth fighting for. It is in response to the severity of the global environmental crisis that more and more people are starting to step outside the system of Man-made laws and take "illegal" direct action in defense of the Earth. Of course, in this context, legal and illegal are meaningless terms; if we accept that certain strategies ( like economic sabotage ) are necessary to put the brakes on the industrial death machine, then we have to be prepared to support those individuals who are risking their lives and freedom to carry out these acts.

What we are starting to see is the emergence of a truly radical, decentralized, international environmental movement and an integral part of building such a movement is going to be the creation of a solid, well-organized prisoner support network. Our movement will not continue to grow unless we are able to provide this level of support to our comrades who are unfortunate enough to become prisoners of the State. Regardless of what one may think of the I.R.A. and their nationalistic independence struggle, it's clear that they've done a phenomenally good job taking care of their P.O.W.s and that's one of the main reasons their movement has been so hard to defeat.

It's also one of the main things that makes the Irish independence struggle a real struggle, and that separates it from other less-organized movements. We have to start viewing prisoner support work as a revolutionary act and as an indispensable part of any real revolutionary struggle or else the State will crush us while our movement is still in it's embryonic stages and we will lose the momentum we now have. The purpose of this newsletter is to spread the word about certain individuals who have acted in defense of the Earth and our collective future and who have fallen victim to state repression. We will not allow these comrades to be forgotten about and we will do everything in our power to bring attention to their situation. But beyond publicizing their plight, we want to build up a reliable and consistent support network for them, both to honor their heroic acts and to send a clear message to the State that we are organized enough to take care of our own.

If there is one thing we ask of anyone who comes into contact with this newsletter, it's that you take the time to write some of these prisoners, not just once but regularly, because in the final analysis this is the best support we can provide them with. We also need to actively counter the State's propaganda and their attempts to portray these individuals as "terrorists". The terrorists are those who wage war in pursuit of political power and economic gain and who build prisons to house the ever growing number of people who choose to speak out against this insanity.

North American Earth Liberation Prisoners Support
Network POB 11331, Eugene, OR 97440

Find a list of some political prisoners in need at: www.spiritoffreedom.org.uk

Other prisoner support efforts:
anarchist black cross
free ali khalid abdullah
free free + critter
free free now
n.w. anarchist p.o.w.s
western prison project
Portland Books To Prisoners, P.O. Box 5998, Portland, OR 97228, pdxbtp@ureach.com

you pay for this , you should know 14.Oct.2002 14:21


By Ramzy Baroud

'Prisoner' is such a confusing term. It could refer to a murderer, a child molester, or a drug dealer. But it's also used to refer to freedom fighters, human rights advocates, zealous leaders with a cause, and men and woman who stand defiant, refusing to beg for mercy before a ruthless oppressor.

But they are all 'prisoners." Nelson Mandela was one. Marwan Barghouthi, the leader of the Intifada is another. Ahmed Saadat, the head of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine is a third. And thousands more.

Palestinians find themselves 'prisoners' very often these days. It often happens when the Israeli army detains boys and men who happen to fall in the age bracket of 15-50, sometimes up to 60. Those are not murderers, they were merely watching TV or eating dinner when Israeli tanks rolled in, Apaches came hovering and loud speakers ordered them to assemble or they'd be shot.

They often assemble, where they are handcuffed and dragged to known or unknown destinations to be tortured and interrogated by malicious Israeli army officers.

When Israeli 'special forces', disguise themselves in civilian clothing, raid a sleeping village somewhere in the West Bank and kidnap a young man from his mother's arms, that man is not a hostage, nor are the Israelis kidnapers. He is merely a 'prisoner', although he does not have the rights of a political prisoner or even the rights of a criminal.

Israel is a country, it has an army and its soldiers wear uniforms with the Star of David trademark. Under this pretext, many things are justified.

When the men of the Jenin refugee camp were kidnapped, following the April massacre, and thrown into a bare, yet besieged piece of land in an area called Salam, the Israeli army was not accused of kidnapping the men of an entire refugee camp.

The Palestinians were simply 'detained by the army.'

I have communicated with some of these men, and I learned horror stories about the way they were treated. A wounded man whose finger was blown off was left to bleed for three days until his hand swelled and he almost died from gangrene, while flies ripped him apart. An old man was beaten by the handle of a shovel and tortured in 'prison' until he died. Thousands of men were ordered to strip naked and were left for days while handcuffed, tied to each other and blind folded; they were caged like animals in the Salam military zone, denied food, drink and medical attention for days. They were supplied with one small cooking pot so that they could all urinate. These were just a few examples as their nightmare was just getting started.

But the savagery of the Israeli army can always be washed down with merely a few technical terms.

'Israel strongly denied Palestinian claims that the IDF ill-treated prisoners during its sweep in the West Bank, searching for Palestinian militants responsible for the killing of dozens of Israeli civilians.'

Isn't this a familiar statement that we could read at any newspaper stand in the US?

The abuse and torture of thousands of people during long cold nights by a vulgar army, can easily be dismissed by a lying 'IDF spokesman' as a 'Palestinian lie'. Who cares about the photos that were snuck out by a few courageous journalists; Who cares about the hundreds of eyewitness accounts that describe the same brutal episode over and over, with the exact same details; Who cares about what international law states or the rules which human decency dictate.

It's all justified as long as Israel knows how to present itself to the media, as long as the Israeli army and government spokesmen are photogenic and know when its timely to crack a joke or two before addressing some unconcerned journalists, and as long as it all falls under "Israel's right to defend itself against terrorism."

Israel can curfew millions of Palestinians in their homes, and subsequently hold them hostage, with little food or water, and no medical attention. But the accurate assessment of the Israeli action is never addressed.

The Nazi brutality relates too well to that of the Israelis. It often prevents rescue workers from reaching dead Palestinians lying in the streets with maggots crawling over the bodies for weeks; it carelessly runs over dead Palestinian civilians in Jenin with tanks and bulldozers.

"We couldn't identify the body because the tank ran over him repeatedly. The only thing that was intact was his toes," a Jenin survivor told me as he testified to the Israeli massacre.

Israeli soldiers, no matter what crimes they commit, remain soldiers in an organized army of a recognized state. Palestinians who resist and defend their villages and families are 'militants', 'gunmen', and needless to say 'terrorists'.

If it happened, and it hardly does, and an Israeli solider was 'kidnapped' by Arab fighters, he is a hostage. Three Israeli soldiers held by Hizbollah in Lebanon are hostages, not prisoners. And their release is one of Kofi Annan's top priorities. While the release of thousands of Palestinian 'prisoners' held by the Israeli army is only the priority of their helpless families.

Marwan Barghouthi was kidnapped in his home, by the Israeli army, therefore he can be indicted for 'murder and terrorism' at his enemy's courts. Even those sympathetic to Barghouthi's plight are calling on Israel to conduct a fair trial, when the Israeli kidnappers are technically the ones who should stand trial for committing yet another war crime.

Three professional Israeli assassins who were caught while in their way to carry out an assassination of Palestinian activists in Ramallah in the early months of the Intifada were killed by an angry crowed. This event symbolized the 'inhumanity' of the Palestinians and the 'victimization' of Israel to the American media.

But How many Palestinians were assassinated? Scores of them, including the 44-year-old wheelchair bound Nasser Jarrar in Tubas last week, who was crushed and decapitated by Israeli bulldozers. Yet this was one of many 'targeted killings of accused militants.'

If dozens of civilians are killed and wounded during those 'targeted killings', the Palestinians are considered merely 'collateral damage.' Nonetheless, assassinating the 'militant' remains 'a great success,' according to Israel's Prime Minister Ariel Sharon.

This is the bizarre reality of the Middle East, a reality that prevents many people from seeing the simple facts that Israel is a rouge, apartheid state, that the Israeli army is a brutal Nazi-like power, and the Palestinian people are a nation that is fighting for its dignity and survival.

Under such realities, Israel can get away with murder, 1805 murders since the beginning of the Intifada two years ago to be exact, in addition to a long list of crimes that requires chapters to narrate.

But according to the United States, it's the lack of financial transparency of the Palestinian Authority that to blame for all of this.

And according to Kofi Annan's report, it's the Palestinian 'militants' (who had no other choice but to defend their tiny refugee camp from the invasion of the fourth strongest army in the world) are who deserve the blame in the 'Jenin Massacre', I mean the ... 'Jenin events'.

And according to a leading Israeli spiritual leader, Palestinians are 'vermin' and it is Israel's responsibility to rid the world of them.

And according to the people of Jenin, the resistance shall continue until the last drop of blood is spilled, because freedom and justice are dearer than life.

Nine-year-old Abdel Salam Sumerin was killed yesterday when Israel Defense Forces troops used live fire to disperse a crowd of school children challenging the army's attempt to impose a curfew on the El Amari refugee camp, in El Bireh.
Friday, September 20, 2002 Tishrei 14, 5763


Palestine Chronicle Editor-in-Chief

old site listed 15.Oct.2002 09:19


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