Rally for Freedom for Patrice Lumumba Ford!! Friday, January 13 @ Portland federal bldg
In honor of Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday, come join us to demonstrate for Patrice Lumumba's Ford's release in front of the Federal Building downtown (SW 3rd and Salmon).
Rally for Freedom for Patrice Lumumba Ford!!
- Friday, January 13, 2012
- 11:30am until 12:30pm
- Federal Building 1000 SW 3rd Ave (SW 3rd & Salmon)
- In honor of Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday, come join us to
demonstrate for Patrice Lumumba's Ford's release in front of the Federal
Building downtown (SW 3rd and Salmon).
Patrice Lumumba Ford is a conscientious, gentle and gifted man. Raised
in Portland, Oregon, he earned his BA in Languages & East African
Studies at Portland State University and then did graduate work at the
Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies in Nanjing. While in
China, distressed by the marginalization of the Muslim minorities, he
became interested in Islam and converted. He married a woman he met in
China and brought her to the US, where they had one son, born in 2001. At
home in Portland, Lumumba taught children at a SW Portland mosque and, as a
volunteer, helped settle new refugees.
Following the September 11, 2001 attacks, the US government squandered
the immense outpouring of international solidarity by bombing Afghanistan,
putting American Muslim communities under siege, and resorting to highly
publicized arrests to promote its new "War on Terror."
When thousands of Afghanis fled to refugee camps in Pakistan, in
Portland Lumumba reacted with alarm. In October 2001, he and five other men
traveled to China, where they requested visas from the Pakistani embassy at
Beijing. His visa refused, Lumumba returned to the United States, his
family, and his work helping new refugees.
One year later, in October 2002, Attorney General John Ashcroft went on
national television announcing the synchronized arrests of "terrorists" in
Portland, Detroit, Seattle, and Lackawanna, New York. The arrests
conveniently coincided with the administration's political needs: they
preceded by six days the Senate vote allowing President Bush to invade
Iraq. The publicity machine for the war on terror needed "dangerous
Local newspapers dubbed defendants the "Portland Seven" (one man's wife
sent emails to China), and federal prosecutors threatened them with life
sentences should they exercise their right to trial. Unsophisticated
defendants panicked and signed plea bargains scripted by the Justice
Department, in which they agreed to help prosecute other Muslims -- known
or unknown to them -- whenever asked!
Lumumba, the last to plead guilty, refused to sign the clause that would
further the "war on terror" by helping with random prosecutions. For that
refusal, in November 2003, he was given a sentence of 18 years for
conspiracy to levy war against the United States. By way of enhancing his
sentence, the Bureau of Prisons has been moving him every 18-20 months to
one maximum security federal prison after another, just often enough to
block him from applying for reclassification to a medium-security facility
and thereby be eligible to come home to Sheridan. He has been railroaded to
Kansas, Southern California, Florida, Colorado, and now Louisiana.
The time has come to look at this harsh sentence with our current
understanding: Lumumba was punished for a legal trip to China, made under
hs own name and passport. The "Portland Seven" case was the concoction of
FBI agents who have been ordered to find -- or invent -- some terrorists.
In recent years, this policy has been ramped up with sting operations and
false arrests across the country.
As of October 4, 2011, Lumumba had served nine years. It's time to set
*SIGN THE JERICHO COINTELPRO
*"FREE ALL POLITICAL PRISONERS NOW!"
The Jericho Movement for Political Prisoner Amnesty
P.O. Box 17420
Portland, Oregon 97217*
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