Mr. President, Ben Carnes was fasting 4 Peltier’s freedom

After this, I don’t know what to do next.


Source

It seems like someone ought to let the president know that an American Indian man fasted in front of the White House for one week. Someone ought to say this man sat on a bench in Lafayette Park, starving in a silent protest, not taking even water.

Except to briefly say –

Someone should tell the White House there was a Native American man starving for the freedom of Leonard Peltier on their front lawn.

Mr. President, Ben Carnes was fasting on the White House Lawn for Peltier’s freedom.

Peltier Now Political Prisoner of Obama

( – promoted by navajo)

I am so, so so naive.


Since Obama was willing to have a beer with a professor and an officer of the law over racial issues, why then shouldn’t he meet with Ben Carnes to discuss freeing Leonard Peltier?

What was I thinking, that Obama would actually free Peltier on his 65th birthday, September 12th?


I Am Barack Obama’s Political Prisoner Now By LEONARD PELTIER

After releasing an original and continuing disciple of death cult leader Charles Manson who attempted to shoot President Gerald Ford, an admitted Croatian terrorist, and another attempted assassin of President Ford under the mandatory 30-year parole law, the U.S. Parole Commission deemed that my release would “promote disrespect for the law.”

Even after Peltier’s sister chained herself to the white house iron gates…


UPDATES from DC :Leonard’s sister, Betty, Chained to White House Gates – Ben Carnes and and Rob Fife end Fast

September 12, 2009 by JAHnessa

Update:  Saturday, September 12, 2009 2:00PM CST:

“Just got off the phone with WANBLI , he confirmed Leonard’s sister Betty, did chain herselve to the white house iron gates. more details to come”…….JAHnessa

Update:  Saturday, September 12, 2009

from:Censored News -Posted by brendanorrell@gmail.com

Ben Carnes ends fast today for Leonard Peltier at White House

Nothing.


Given the complexion of the three recent federal parolees, it might seem that my greatest crime was being Indian. But the truth is that my gravest offense is my innocence. In Iran, political prisoners are occasionally released if they confess to the ridiculous charges on which they are dragged into court, in order to discredit and intimidate them and other like-minded citizens. The FBI and its mouthpieces have suggested the same, as did the parole commission in 1993, when it ruled that my refusal to confess was grounds for denial of parole.

Nothing except for the fact he is innocent, and how nice that he ignored Carnes’ and Peltier’s sister.


To claim innocence is to suggest that the government is wrong, if not guilty itself. The American judicial system is set up so that the defendant is not punished for the crime itself, but for refusing to accept whatever plea arrangement is offered and for daring to compel the judicial system to grant the accused the right to right to rebut the charges leveled by the state in an actual trial. Such insolence is punished invariably with prosecution requests for the steepest possible sentence, if not an upward departure from sentencing guidelines that are being gradually discarded, along with the possibility of parole.

Again – I am so,so naive.


Since Obama was willing to have a beer with a professor and an officer of the law over racial issues, why then shouldn’t he meet with Ben Carnes to discuss freeing Leonard Peltier?

Being the Commander-in-Chief must not command the necessary respect from our Intelligence; otherwise, they would respect Obama’s decision to free Peltier if he made that decision, wouldn’t they? I guess not. They’re in charge, and he’s not.

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http://www.bsnorrell.blogspot….

I genuinely like President Obama, to a fault even. He’s an example I would hold up to anyone as embodying the strong moral character we want the future generations to display, and that’s why in addition to everything else about this it’s so disappointing. I never expected anything out of w, but I catch myself thinking “That’s my man” with Obama. So, “That’s my man” who is letting Peltier rot in prison, and who didn’t give Carnes or Peltier’s sister the time of day.

Ben Carnes Fasts to Free Leonard Peltier


Source

Ben Carnes is fasting in Lafayette Park across from the White House in solidarity with freedom for Leonard Peltier. Peltier is a citizen of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians who has been held as a political prisoner of the Government of the United States of America for over 33 years.

Mr. President,

These truths should be factors in your decision to free Leonard Peltier in my opinion: the historical context of the Indian Boarding Schools which closed in the early 70’s, and the Forced Sterilizations of Indigenous Women in the mid 70’s. Both are not separate from being major contributing factors to the circumstances at the time of Peltier’s false arrest. They, in conjunction  with the obvious genocidal colonial practices that preceded Indian Boarding Schools and Forced Sterilizations, created the violence. Correspondingly, you may not know of the CIA’s influence over some journalism and book publications in academia; consequently, I believe that should also be a factor in your decision to free Leonard Peltier.


Amnesty International urges Clinton to grant pardon to Leonard Peltier

Amnesty International is today calling on President Clinton to grant Leonard Peltier presidential pardon before leaving office. Leonard Peltier, a Native American Indian, has been in prison for 23 years for the murder of two Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) agents.

– snip –

Amnesty International believes that the evidence that Peltier shot the two FBI agents is far from conclusive. One of the organization’s pivotal concerns was that his extradition from Canada was on the basis of a testimony by an alleged eye-witness who was coerced by the FBI into making false statements. In a recent public hearing in Toronto, Canada, Myrtle Poor Bear reasserted that her original claim — that she was Peltier’s girlfriend and that she saw him shoot the agents — was false, and was a result of months of threats and harassment from FBI agents. She had also said that she had been 80 kilometers (50 miles) away from the scene at the time of the shooting.

Amnesty International has repeatedly voiced serious concerns over the fairness of the legal proceedings which led to Leonard Peltier’s conviction and sentence, and believes that political factors may have influenced the way in which the case was conducted.


Source

Key witnesses were banned from testifying about FBI misconduct & testimony about the conditions and atmosphere on the Pine Ridge Reservation at the time of the shoot-out was severely restricted. Important evidence, such as conflicting ballistics reports, was ruled inadmissible. Still, the U.S. Prosecutor failed to produce a single witness who could identify Peltier as the shooter. Instead, the government tied a bullet casing found near the bodies of their agents to the alleged murder weapon, arguing that this gun had been the only one of its kind used during the shootout, and that it had belonged to Peltier.

Mr. President, every time I have heard about the FBI agent who wrote “American Indian Mafia” and has written in favor of keeping Peltier in prison, I think about this.


http://books.google.com/books?…

The CIA also developed remarkably close ties to journalism and, during the period 1947 – 1977, some 400 American journalists “secretly carried out assignments” for the agency, according to a classic investigative study by Carl Berstein…CIA influence extended to book publication…

The article states that it’s not specifically pertaining to “American Indian politics,” but does explore what it calls “close connections” with the CIA’s influence over some journalism and book publications in academia with the fact that the “victors have been writing the history.” That to me, Mr. President, is an indisputable fact. What’s more, is the reason “victors have been writing the history” is to acquire Tribal Lands and the natural resources from them.

Mr. President, have you ever heard of Alex White Plume?


Source

Alex White Plume, a Lakota living on the Pine Ridge Reservation, has grown industrial hemp on his land since 2000. That year, the DEA, with helicopters and machine guns, confiscated the crop (legal in the sovereign nation in which it was grown), costing taxpayers more than $200,000.00.

In 2001, the DEA came only with side arms and weed eaters, this time simply destroying the crop.

In 2002, Alex and his family again planted fields of industrial hemp, but were unable to complete their contract by delivering the crop to the Madison Hemp and Flax Co., because U.S. District Judge Battey (in Rapid City, So. Dak.), issued a civil injunction stating that if Alex so much as touches his hemp, he will be held in contempt of court and jailed for up to six months without a trial or a jury. As a result, the hemp was cut and piled by people unknown; the pile lying in silent testimony between Alex and the Madison Hemp & Flax buyer Craig Lee, both barred from touching it by the government. Delivery was made, but the deliveree could not accept the product.

He was and is innocent, and that’s why you should free Leonard Peltier. I have one more question with all due respect – when does it stop?

(Emphasis mine)


Subject: Protection for Mato Paha (Bear Butte)

Despite protests of American Indian People and other supporters, the county has granted alcohol licenses to the bars. Recently, a corporation has purchased majority ownership in the bar closest to Mato Paha and they are going to have helicopter rides over the butte. We are informed this corporation is affiliated with or are former Blackwater high clearance mercenaries and have already strong armed some American Indians who were on public land taking pictures.

When does it stop?

Even John Coltrane said,


“I’ve found you’ve got to look back at the old things and see them in a new light.”

and while he was obviously referring to music; I think it also applies where “victors have been writing the history” – especially since music is a universal language.


“Carnes is standing there in fast and in prayer for 7 days in the hopes of gaining attention of the President of the United States of America to the plight of Leonard. During his fast he will not take food or water and he will remain in a prayerful attitude for the next 7 days. Those who make stands to fight injustice such as Ben is doing should have all of our respect and prayers. There are many who make smoke and kick up dust but few who actually have the will to make a stand such as this.”

Freeing Peltier: Ben Carnes to Fast in Hopes of Meeting Obama

( – promoted by navajo)

Since Obama was willing to have a beer with a professor and an officer of the law over racial issues, why then shouldn’t he meet with Ben Carnes to discuss freeing Leonard Peltier?


Source

As a result of Leonard Peltier’s recent PAROLE DENIAL, Sundance Chief Ben Carnes, a member of the Choctaw Nation, will go to Washington, D.C.to stand & Fast in front of the White House between September 5 – 12, 2009, in hopes of securing a meeting with President Obama.

I’ve been thinking about how and when Obama could pull it off, and use it as a distraction to pass the Public Option in Health Care.

Let us start with the assumption that Obama would, if politically, he could. Assuming he would, could he use freeing Peltier as a distraction method to secure the Public Option through the process everyone is already discussing? I was thinking that he could just do it as quietly as possible, but it wouldn’t be quiet and timing is everything in politics. Here’s what I’m thinking.

First, he gets the paperwork already in place, to where all he has to do is sign it. He does so very quietly. Second, Ben Carnes shows up for his fast on September 5th. Obama waits and lets the publicity start over the fast; however, he uses it as cover for one last attempt at bipartisanship publicly, but he has everything set in place to push the public option to the next step(s). The outcry from Progressives would supply cover for both processes of securing the Public Option and freeing Leonard Peltier. Whatever step that is, about the third day he sends an invitation to Ben Carnes who is fasting. There are three things Obama can accomplish at once at this point with Native Americans, while having been given some space to secure the Public Option.

By asking Ben Carnes what he would like to eat and who he would like to come get him, it would show respect and help relations with the Tribal Nations. Of course security would have to be there, but they wouldn’t be “bringing him in,” they’d be taking him to dinner after a shower was provided. Two, the dinner would be a distraction for the ones against the Public Option, because it would carry the news cycle while Obama takes the next step to push the Public Option. Everyone would have to do their part at this point to secure media coverage. Remember how they passed the Patriot and Military Commissions Acts? They rewrote it at night and had a vote on it the next morning. I’m not suggesting to do that literally, but use it. Now for the third thing.

What better day to free Peltier than on his 65th birthday, September 12th? This goes with the cycle Obama is a genius at: he brings it up, angers all the people I can’t stand, seems like he backs out, then something happens. If he invites Carnes it will upset some, the ones I can’t stand, but instead of looking like he’s changing his mind, all he has to do is let the natural course of events unfold. He frees Peltier on September 12th, having given the public about four days to forget about it.

I’m not a political strategist and this may be a foolish plan. If so or not so, since Obama actually reads as opposed to his predecessor, please offer suggestions and modifications in the comments. The main idea is to help Obama with a plan wherein he can free him. We must, must, find the best political strategy to offer the President in regards to freeing Leonard Peltier.

“Hope For American Indians Starts With Peltier’s Freedom:” Tribal Sovereignty In The Energy Crisis

( – promoted by navajo)

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Why might “Change and Hope for American Indians start with Peltier’s Freedom?”

First, let’s review three examples of what needs to be changed: Blackwater’s questionable involvement with Bear Butte, Alex White Plume having been disallowed to grow Hemp, and Michael Rost’s encroachment on Tribal Lands. Many more examples could be offered as well as citing the racist attitudes that empower the land theft, but let’s relate how Peltier’s freedom would relate to Blackwater’s questionable involvement with Bear Butte first.  

(Emphasis mine)


Subject: Protection for Mato Paha (Bear Butte)

Despite protests of American Indian People and other supporters, the county has granted alcohol licenses to the bars. Recently, a corporation has purchased majority ownership in the bar closest to Mato Paha and they are going to have helicopter rides over the butte. We are informed this corporation is affiliated with or are former Blackwater high clearance mercenaries and have already strong armed some American Indians who were on public land taking pictures.

Blackwater’s questionable involvement with Bear Butte isn’t that questionable, there’s natural resources in the Black Hills, and the Black Hills was at the heart of the conflict before Peltier’s false arrest. Would freeing him stop the land encroachment? No, not since they might not “need” the uranium in the Black Hills in the future, nor might they “need” to acquire it from Tribal Lands in the future. Read on.

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Would freeing him have stopped the land encroachment Alex White Plume experienced? I don’t think the DEA would have cared either way. They would have attacked Alex White Plume’s financial independence regardless. Again, it comes back to the land, but will they need to steal anymore? Read on.


Source

Alex White Plume, a Lakota living on the Pine Ridge Reservation, has grown industrial hemp on his land since 2000. That year, the DEA, with helicopters and machine guns, confiscated the crop (legal in the sovereign nation in which it was grown), costing taxpayers more than $200,000.00.

In 2001, the DEA came only with side arms and weed eaters, this time simply destroying the crop.

In 2002, Alex and his family again planted fields of industrial hemp, but were unable to complete their contract by delivering the crop to the Madison Hemp and Flax Co., because U.S. District Judge Battey (in Rapid City, So. Dak.), issued a civil injunction stating that if Alex so much as touches his hemp, he will be held in contempt of court and jailed for up to six months without a trial or a jury. As a result, the hemp was cut and piled by people unknown; the pile lying in silent testimony between Alex and the Madison Hemp & Flax buyer Craig Lee, both barred from touching it by the government. Delivery was made, but the deliveree could not accept the product.


Source

Following the tragic fire which destroyed their (Debra and Alex White Plume’s) home, its contents and all of the irreplaceable documents and art in the Owe Aku office…Debra never hesitated for a moment to organize, mobilize and manage the team she leads in taking on the multinational corporations threatening to expand uranium mining in and around Pine Ridge.

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Survival requires in the minds of the intruders that the end justifies the means, yet what if the answer is now before them and they don’t know what it is, and that the only thing left to do is to respect Tribal Sovereignty and to accommodate different cultural views? Now we’re about to get to why “Change and Hope for American Indians start(s) with Peltier’s Freedom.” What will be left is hate crime for hate crimes’ sake and refusal to change perhaps, but there just might be a choice that’s been previously unknown.


http://www.dailykos.com/story/…

A man by the name of Michael Rost has been encroaching on Tribal Lands by bulldozing roads, tearing down trees, disturbing burial grounds, and stealing sacred objects off Schaghticoke land,


Russell Means participating in Schaghticoke Tribal Nation rally

“…That the state is allowing the destruction of our reservation by someone who is not even a tribal member is a disgrace. To have the remains of our ancestors and our relations disturbed is unheard of. To allow someone to disturb our artifacts and take them off our land and sold along with our timber and our rocks is unprecedented, and there’s no stopping this in sight,” Velky said.

Freeing Peltier would be a beginning of respecting Tribal Sovereignty and accommodating different cultural views along with signing the U.N. Declaration of Indigenous Rights. Blackwater wouldn’t be needed to steal the resources of Bear Butte, Debra and Alex White Plume could be left alone and not have to fight uranium mining, while people like Rost would still exist, even though their financial incentives would be gone? I’m nowhere near qualified to say anything definite. However, I am  related to someone who was qualified to have a valid, if not sound opinion regarding the energy crisis. Read this.

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The reason Barbara Boxer has a copy of that letter, is because I told my biological grandfather to mail one to her after I saw that he had sent one to John McCain. I met my biological grandfather for the first time two months before he died. That was about the time I learned for sure all my Indian blood comes from my biological mother. Returning to my late biological grandfather and his letter; I’m not saying who he was or where he worked at.

The letter contains the technology to clean up nuclear waste, but that’s all I’m going to say about that part for the same reason that I don’t think such things should be on the internet. The point is, at least one member of both political parties probably knows. This is what I see.

Combined with everything else such as wind and solar power, the survival need to steal natural resources off Tribal Lands is gone, or it could be. Problem is, our technology far supersedes our humanity, and I don’t trust this new administration in conjunction with the Supreme Court with  to implement what my own grandfather shows, because I think they’d skip the cleaning up nuclear waste part and just dump it on Tribal Lands. If wastewater, why not nuclear waste (Radiation Warning Signs Placed on Cheyenne River)?


Supreme Court declines to hear sacred site case Monday, June 8, 2009

The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the U.S. Forest Service did not violate the religious rights of tribes by allowing the use of reclaimed wastewater in the sacred San Francisco Peaks of Arizona.

However, free Leonard Peltier, sign the U.N. Declaration of Indigenous Rights, and I would change my mind. Respect. It’s all about respect now.

Respect. The best memory I have of him is watching the RNC with him; it was like watching a football game. He was Republican. We agreed on principals, but we disagreed on who would get us there and who wouldn’t. It was a long waited for evening of being together. Now, back to the main point: Tribal Sovereignty In The Energy Crisis.

While the financial crisis hadn’t become common knowledge when I met him then, the need for green jobs wasn’t felt like it is today. I see no reason why both his life’s work and the need to have a green economy cannot coexist, and that would do one thing – eliminate the need to encroach on Tribal Lands. If Leonard Peltier is freed and the U.N. Declaration of Indigenous Rights is signed, only then would there be the change necessary for respecting Tribal Sovereignty.

What all did the letter say? Ask Barbara Boxer and not McCain. He loves his off shore drilling, “Drill, baby drill.” Shut up McCain, shut up.

The question as I see it is this: would we go to a hydrogen – based economy and utilize the technology that cleans up nuclear waste; or, would we go to a hydrogen – based economy and not utilize the technology that cleans up nuclear waste?

I am not optimistic,


Supreme Court declines to hear sacred site case Monday, June 8, 2009

The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the U.S. Forest Service did not violate the religious rights of tribes by allowing the use of reclaimed wastewater in the sacred San Francisco Peaks of Arizona.

and the real problem isn’t with the Obama Administration, who needs to be commended for appointing “Kimberly Teehee for the newly created position of senior policy advisor for Native American Affairs.” But it’s too late to say this or that, assuming they read it – they know. Moreover, combining green jobs with the information in my grandfather’s letter just might save our planet. My opinion isn’t based on expertise, but that letter warrants serious examination.  Boxer is on Twitter, isn’t she? Yes, she is.

It conclude, if the answer to “would we go to a hydrogen – based economy and utilize the technology that cleans up nuclear waste” would be no, this discussion is pointless as far as I’m concerned. And, it’s worth debating.

Would we go to a hydrogen - based economy and utilize the technology that cleans up nuclear waste?

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Chief Leonard Crow Dog Speaks For Leonard Peltier

( – promoted by navajo)


Chief Leonard Crow Dog:


My Relatives,

Long, long time I come here – and during those trials. Now I’m 68 years old, can hardly walk, can hardly sing. Oh before I go, I want Leonard to be free.

I am neither going to elaborate on Chief Leonard Crow Dog’s words, nor will I elaborate on Leonard Peltier’s words out of respect for them both – and the fact that nothing needs to be added. Since this is an open letter in the public domain, I have included all of it.


An Open Letter to Barack Obama

Symbolism Alone Will Not Bring Change

By LEONARD PELTIER

I have watched with keen interest and renewed hope as your campaign has mobilized millions of Americans behind your message of changing a political system that serves a small economic elite at the expense of the peoples of the United States and the world. Your election as president of the United States, where slaves and Indians were long considered less than human under the law, will undoubtedly constitute a historic moment in race relations in the United States.

Yet symbolism alone will not bring about change. Our young people, black and Native alike, suffer from police brutality and racial profiling, underfunded schools, and discrimination in employment and housing. I sincerely hope your campaign will inspire some hope among our youth to struggle for a better future. I am, however, concerned that your recent statement on the Sean Bell verdict, in which the New York police officers who fired 50 shots at a young man on the eve of his wedding were acquitted of criminal charges, displays a rather myopic view of the law. Until the law is harnessed to protect the victims of state violence and racism, it will serve as an instrument of repression, just as the slave codes functioned to sustain and legitimize an inhuman institution.

As I can testify from experience, the legal institutions of this nation are far from racial and political neutrality. When judges align with the repressive actions and policies of the executive branch, injustice is rationalized and cloaked in judicial platitudes. As you may know, I have now served more than three decades of my life as a political prisoner of the federal government for a crime I did not commit. I have served more time than the maximum sentence under the guidelines under which I was sentenced, yet my parole is continually denied (on the rare occasions when I am afforded a hearing) because I refuse to falsely confess. Amnesty International, South African Bishop Desmond Tutu, the Dalai Lama of Tibet, my Guatemalan sister Rigoberta Menchu, and many of your friends and supporters have recognized me as a political prisoner and called for my immediate release. Millions of people around the world view me as a symbol of injustice against the indigenous peoples of t his land, and I have no doubt that I will go down in history as one of a long line of victims of U.S. government repression, along with Sacco and Vanzetti, the Haymarket Square martyrs, Eugene Debs, Bill Haywood, and others targeted by for their political beliefs. But neither I nor my people can afford to wait for history to rectify the crimes of the past.

As a member of the American Indian Movement, I came to the Pine Ridge Oglala reservation to defend the traditional people there from human rights violations carried out by tribal police and goon squads backed by the FBI and the highest offices of the federal government. Our symbolic occupation of Wounded Knee in 1973 inspired Indians across the Americas to struggle for their freedom and treaty rights, but it was also met by a fierce federal siege and a wave of violent repression on Pine Ridge. In 1974, AIM leader Russell Means campaigned for tribal chairman while being tried by the federal government for his role at Wounded Knee. Although Means was barred from the reservation by decree of the U.S. – client regime of Richard Wilson, he won the popular vote, only to be denied office by extensive vote fraud and control of the electoral mechanisms. Wilson’s goons proceeded to shoot up pro-Means villages such as Wanblee and terrorize traditional supporters throughout the reservation, killing at least 60 people between 1973 and 1975.

It is long past time for a congressional investigation to examine the degree of federal complicity in the violent counterinsurgency that followed the occupation of Wounded Knee. The tragic shootout that led to the deaths of two FBI agents and one Native man also led not only to my false conviction, but also the termination of the Church Committee, which was investigating abuses by federal intelligence and law enforcement agents, before it could hold hearings on FBI infiltration of AIM. Despite decades of attempts by my attorneys to obtain government documents related to my case, the FBI continues to withhold thousands of documents that might tend to exonerate me or reveal compromising evidence of judicial collusion with the prosecution.

I truly believe the truth will set me free, but it will also signify a symbolic break from America’s undeclared war on indigenous peoples. I hope and pray that you possess the courage and integrity to seek out the truth and the wisdom to recognize the inherent right of all peoples to self-determination, as acknowledged by the United Nations Declarat ion on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. While your statements on federal Indian

policy sound promising, your vision of “one America” has an ominous ring for Native peoples struggling to define their own national visions. If freed from colonial constraints and external intervention, indigenous nations might well serve as functioning models of the freedom and democracy to which the United States aspires.

Yours in the struggle.

Until freedom is won,

Leonard Peltier

# 89637-132

U.S.P.

Lewisburg,

P.O.

Box 1000,

Lewisburg, PA USA 17837

Bush Denied Peltier’s Clemency

( – promoted by navajo)

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Blog Talk Radio: “Clemency for Political Prisoner Leonard Peltier”

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w, “The Decider” bush, “decided” to deny Peltier’s clemency the last day he was in the White House.


Source

Bush also denied one of the longest-standing petitions for clemency, for Leonard Peltier, a Native American activist sentenced to two consecutive terms of life imprisonment for the murder of two FBI agents during a 1975 shootout on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. His application had been under consideration since 1993, current and former Justice Department officials said.

Obama is the only one who can help him now, since what w did makes a pardon more difficult politically, since one year must pass to reapply for commutation, and two years must pass before a pardon is reapplied for.


Such denials can be a serious setback for those intent on clemency. After a denial, a petitioner must wait two years to reapply for a pardon and one year for a commutation of a prison sentence, although they can also circumvent the Justice Department and appeal directly to the White House whenever they want. In some cases, a presidential denial can be a setback in other ways, as well, and make it harder politically for the next administration to approve it, according to several current and former administration officials involved in the pardon process.

What does “and one year for a commutation of a prison sentence” mean? It’s“the reduction of legal penalties, especially in terms of imprisonment. Unlike a pardon, a commutation does not nullify the conviction and is often conditional.”


Bush, who has not spoken publicly about the denials, did not make formal rulings on some other well-known figures, leaving their petitions alive. That long list includes former Illinois Gov. George Ryan, then-Vice President Dick Cheney’s chief of staff I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby, U.S. Navy spy for Israel Jonathan Pollard, media mogul Conrad Black and telecommunications executives Bernard Ebbers and John Rigas.

So, a war criminal gets to deny a political prisoner’s clemency in his very last full day in power.

Petition Badge
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Formal Petition to Attorney General-Designate Eric Holder to appoint a Special Prosecutor to investigate and prosecute any and all government officials who have participated in War Crimes.

Sponsored by Docudharma.com and Democrats.com.

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I wish Obama would reach out to Indian Country with as much effort as he has to the Muslim community, and this would be a great start.

Please sign this petition requesting Obama free Leonard Peltier.

Open Letter To President Obama: Free Leonard Peltier (Update)

( – promoted by navajo)

Mr. President,

It is with a great sense of urgency that I ask you to free Leonard Peltier. Peltier was recently attacked,   was prevented from speaking to his attorney on January 23 after he was attacked, and he is now just permitted one phone call every thirty days. Honestly Mr. President, this does not surprise me. Before proceeding, I honor you for and am grateful beyond words for the immediate changes you have made.

Mr. President, these truths should be factors in your decision in my opinion: the historical context of the Indian Boarding Schools which closed in the early 70’s, and the Forced Sterilizations of Indigenous Women in the mid 70’s. Both are not separate from being major contributing factors to the circumstances at the time of Peltier’s false arrest. They, in conjunction  with the obvious genocidal colonial practices that preceded Indian Boarding Schools and Forced Sterilizations, created the violence. Correspondingly, you may not know of the CIA’s influence over some journalism and book publications in academia; consequently, I believe that should also be a factor in your decision to free Leonard Peltier.


Amnesty International urges Clinton to grant pardon to Leonard Peltier

Amnesty International is today calling on President Clinton to grant Leonard Peltier presidential pardon before leaving office. Leonard Peltier, a Native American Indian, has been in prison for 23 years for the murder of two Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) agents.

– snip –

Amnesty International believes that the evidence that Peltier shot the two FBI agents is far from conclusive. One of the organization’s pivotal concerns was that his extradition from Canada was on the basis of a testimony by an alleged eye-witness who was coerced by the FBI into making false statements. In a recent public hearing in Toronto, Canada, Myrtle Poor Bear reasserted that her original claim — that she was Peltier’s girlfriend and that she saw him shoot the agents — was false, and was a result of months of threats and harassment from FBI agents. She had also said that she had been 80 kilometers (50 miles) away from the scene at the time of the shooting.

Amnesty International has repeatedly voiced serious concerns over the fairness of the legal proceedings which led to Leonard Peltier’s conviction and sentence, and believes that political factors may have influenced the way in which the case was conducted.


Source

Key witnesses were banned from testifying about FBI misconduct & testimony about the conditions and atmosphere on the Pine Ridge Reservation at the time of the shoot-out was severely restricted. Important evidence, such as conflicting ballistics reports, was ruled inadmissible. Still, the U.S. Prosecutor failed to produce a single witness who could identify Peltier as the shooter. Instead, the government tied a bullet casing found near the bodies of their agents to the alleged murder weapon, arguing that this gun had been the only one of its kind used during the shootout, and that it had belonged to Peltier.

Mr. President, every time I have heard about the FBI agent who wrote “American Indian Mafia” and has written in favor of keeping Peltier in prison, I think about this.


http://books.google.com/books?…

The CIA also developed remarkably close ties to journalism and, during the period 1947 – 1977, some 400 American journalists “secretly carried out assignments” for the agency, according to a classic investigative study by Carl Berstein…CIA influence extended to book publication…

The article states that it’s not specifically pertaining to “American Indian politics,” but does explore what it calls “close connections” with the CIA’s influence over some journalism and book publications in academia with the fact that the “victors have been writing the history.” That to me, Mr. President, is an indisputable fact. What’s more, is the reason “victors have been writing the history” is to acquire Tribal Lands and the natural resources on them.

Mr. President, have you ever heard of Alex White Plume?


Source

Alex White Plume, a Lakota living on the Pine Ridge Reservation, has grown industrial hemp on his land since 2000. That year, the DEA, with helicopters and machine guns, confiscated the crop (legal in the sovereign nation in which it was grown), costing taxpayers more than $200,000.00.

In 2001, the DEA came only with side arms and weed eaters, this time simply destroying the crop.

In 2002, Alex and his family again planted fields of industrial hemp, but were unable to complete their contract by delivering the crop to the Madison Hemp and Flax Co., because U.S. District Judge Battey (in Rapid City, So. Dak.), issued a civil injunction stating that if Alex so much as touches his hemp, he will be held in contempt of court and jailed for up to six months without a trial or a jury. As a result, the hemp was cut and piled by people unknown; the pile lying in silent testimony between Alex and the Madison Hemp & Flax buyer Craig Lee, both barred from touching it by the government. Delivery was made, but the deliveree could not accept the product.

He was and is innocent, and that’s why you should free Leonard Peltier. I have one more question with all due respect – when does it stop?

(Emphasis mine)


Subject: Protection for Mato Paha (Bear Butte)

Despite protests of American Indian People and other supporters, the county has granted alcohol licenses to the bars. Recently, a corporation has purchased majority ownership in the bar closest to Mato Paha and they are going to have helicopter rides over the butte. We are informed this corporation is affiliated with or are former Blackwater high clearance mercenaries and have already strong armed some American Indians who were on public land taking pictures.

When does it stop?

Even John Coltrane said,


“I’ve found you’ve got to look back at the old things and see them in a new light.”

and while he was obviously referring to music; I think it also applies where “victors have been writing the history” – especially since music is a universal language.

[Update]

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AIM West, The Leonard Peltier Defense Offense Committee, The Leonard Peltier Support Group of Northern California, POOR Magazine and members of the community demonstrate in front of the Federal Building to protest the assault on Leonard Peltier in the US Penitentiary Canaan in Waymart, PA. Leonard Peltier is an elder, a political prisoner who has been wrongfully incarcerated for more than 3 decades. The people demand that he be given proper medical care, nutrition and that President Obama give this the attention it deserves by granting Leonard Peltier his freedom.

Photobucket

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(Update) 3 Steps to Help Leonard Peltier (Peltier Attacked)

( – promoted by navajo)

Three things that you can do right now to help Leonard Peltier are these. One, read Brenda Norrell’s article “Leonard Peltier attacked: Appeal to Attorney General.Two, get furious. And three…

Photobucket

Copy and paste part of her article.

Update:


Source

During the call, Peltier said he will not be allowed “out of the hole” and in the general population.

Peltier said Canaan is a tough place, where gangs are being brought in. “He is one of the oldest ones there,” Cowan said. “He will not be allowed back in the general population or he will be jumped.”

Cowan said the FBI did tell Peltier that he was the victim in the attack, which she said was filmed on camera.

Peltier said he was set up in the attack. “It was a cold blooded setup,” Cowan said. She said he did not know his attackers. “He has never seen his attackers before.”

Peltier said he will be allowed only one phone call every 30 days.

Cowan said she is hopeful that President Obama will work “nation to nation” with the Turtle Mountain Chippewas to bring Peltier home to North Dakota.

“We have to push for his transfer, he is not safe there.”

All My Relations, Companeros, Friends in Solidarity,

In view of what occured Tuesday to our friend, Sun Dance Brother, a GrandFather and Elder, Leonard Peltier, AIM-WEST calls on friends and allies to come out this Friday, Jan. 23, in San Francisco and demonstrate their solidarity and deep concern for Leonard’s life, safety and security.

The rally in San Francisco, is at the Federal Building starting from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m., at the corner of Mission Street and Seventh Street, across from the 9th District Federal Courthouse (near Civic Center Bart Station).

Our allies are encouraged to hold rallies and demonstrations in cities across the country, and throughout the world, and register their concern as well, those who know the case of Leonard Peltier’s imprisonment these last thirty-three years. This is a moment in time where we can take the opportunity to share with the outside world another example, and further expose the treatment and injustices committed against Indigenous peoples’ held hostage by an oppressive government.

Join with us and show your disgust against the justice system; the Federal Bureau of Prisons, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, in their obvious attempt to sabotage Leonard’s parole plans.They are responsible with callously and maliciously orchestrating an order to transfer Leonard Peltier to a lesser security prison with complete disregard for his life, placed into a dangerous situation whereby creates an environment which would cause, or provoke an attempt to harm his life; or to revoke any possibility for his release from prison any time soon, as per Leonard’s unwillingness to submit to an “incident report” of the attack.

Leonard needs to be transferred to another prison for his safety and well-being, now!

Meanwhile, we need to direct our demands on Leonard’s behalf to the attention to the Office of President Obama, and to the Director of Office of Bureau of Federal Prisons, and express to them our demand for Leonard’s health care, nutritional and medical needs as well.

We will file an official complaint with the Office of Attorney General to investigate the FBI for their role and involvement in the circumstances that lead to Leonard’s transfer to a lower level security prison.

Further, we call upon the offices of Congresswoman Pelosi, Congressman Don Conyers, and Congresswoman Barbara Waters, and U.S. Senators to investigate the possible implications of the Federal government’s offfices staging an assault on Leonard’s life, and of their obligation to protect our Elder.

Finally, we call on the attention of appropriate offices of the United Nations be alerted by registering our complaint to the Office of UN High Commissioner on Human Rights, the UN Special Rapporteur on Indigenous Peoples, Prof. James Anaya, and the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues. Specifically, we call for an investigation on U.S. prisoners held unjustly longer than 30 years without parole, with reference to a US statute such as in Leonard’s case.

I think the link and the introduction with what else is quoted here would work. Help.


http://bsnorrell.blogspot.com/…

Eric H. Holder, Attorney General Designate

U.S. Department of Justice

950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW

Washington, DC 20530-0001

AskDOJ@usdoj.gov

Re: Leonard Peltier #89637-132

Dear Attorney General Holder:

I am writing today to provide you with a number of serious concerns stemming from the case of Mr. Leonard Peltier and explain how this case impacts all US citizens.

– snip –

• Once Mr. Peltier arrived at the Canaan prison facility, he was jumped by younger inmates, severely beaten, put in solitary confinement and placed upon meal restrictions despite his having diabetes and other medical conditions. The family has requested copies of the video tapes of that incident to no avail. It is as if the whole scenario was contrived to detract from the fact that Mr. Peltier has been a model prisoner having more than enough points to qualify for parole.

• Retired, former and actively employed FBI agents have taken action against the release and parole of Leonard Peltier time and again. While it is their right to speak their opinion, it is not right to do so on federal time and at the taxpayer’s expense. Their letters, writings, articles, books, protests, outcries and interviews concerning Mr. Peltier, are a conflict of interest and tip the scales against him unfairly. In addition, it is certainly questionable as to the timing of a letter written by a former FBI Agent to Representative John Conyers and the beating Mr. Peltier received at Canaan.

O.K., so maybe it’s four things.


Copy and paste into your bcc email list ..

it will go to over 300 news paper accounts at one time

let them know about what is going on with Leonard

(Name removed from bulletin)

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Petition: Obama Free Leonard Peltier

( – promoted by navajo)

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Petition: Obama Free Leonard Peltier!

Therefore Be It Resolved, that we require the new incoming President Barack Obama immediately offer a Presidential Pardon to Mr. Leonard Peltier so that Leonard may join his children and grandchildren and continue the fight for Indigenous freedom.

The American public in 1973 would probably not have found the fact that a law officer could kill an unarmed man as credible as they do today.

Also, they probably didn’t see the corruption like they do today, either. I don’t even need to give examples it’s so bad; however, here’s an example of injustice I’ll give.


Source

Key witnesses were banned from testifying about FBI misconduct & testimony about the conditions and atmosphere on the Pine Ridge Reservation at the time of the shoot-out was severely restricted. Important evidence, such as conflicting ballistics reports, was ruled inadmissible. Still, the U.S. Prosecutor failed to produce a single witness who could identify Peltier as the shooter. Instead, the government tied a bullet casing found near the bodies of their agents to the alleged murder weapon, arguing that this gun had been the only one of its kind used during the shootout, and that it had belonged to Peltier.

Oh, I just can’t believe that law enforcement would kill an unarmed man, because such agencies are above political improprieties, just like I can’t believe the FBI agents cut off Anna Mae Pictou-Aquash’s hands after her death.


Source

The 30-year-old aboriginal activist, a Mi’kmaq from Nova Scotia, died in 1975, believed assassinated either by agents with the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation or by senior members of the American Indian Movement (AIM).

Furthermore, the reason I can’t believe the FBI agents cut off Anna Mae Pictou-Aquash’s hands, is we don’t torture.

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What goes on here deserves the same amount of attention as what goes on there, or do we free the political prisoners over there, so we don’t have to free the political prisoner over here?

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Petition: Obama Free Leonard Peltier!

Therefore Be It Resolved, that we require the new incoming President Barack Obama immediately offer a Presidential Pardon to Mr. Leonard Peltier so that Leonard may join his children and grandchildren and continue the fight for Indigenous freedom.

Lastly, why would an FBI agent who was there write a book and then this?


Here is a recent letter from former SAC Minneapolis, Joe Trimbach, to Congressman John Conyers, the recipient of a new major petition campaign to gain Peltier’s freedom:

January 6, 2009

The Honorable John Conyers, Jr.

Chairman, Committee on the Judiciary

U.S.House of Representatives

2138 Rayburn House Office Building

Washington, DC 20515

Dear Congressman Conyers,

Please reference my letter of August 7, 2008, in which I described the fraudulent defense of Leonard Peltier, convicted in the 1975 execution-style murders of FBI Agents Ron Williams and Jack Coler. As you recall, I was the Special Agent in Charge (SAC) in Minneapolis from 1973 to 1975 during the period when leaders of the American Indian Movement (AIM) terrorized the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota. My book, American Indian Mafia, exposes many of the myths and falsehoods perpetuated by the AIM leadership in an effort to blame their criminal activity on the FBI and other law enforcement agencies. One of their favorite myths, the alleged use of COINTELPRO against AIM, is one of several debunked in Mafia.

I am compelled to write to you again concerning renewed efforts to gain Peltier’s freedom. President-elect Obama is under enormous pressure to grant Peltier a presidential pardon. He needs to be briefed that Peltier’s claimed innocence and the denials of his involvement in those double homicides constitute one of the biggest myths from that period of violence. I was there that day, responding to the frantic calls from Ron Williams as he and his partner, Jack Coler, came under fire. By the time I arrived from Minneapolis, some four hours later, the shooting was still going on. In fact, as my SWAT team chased Peltier into the hills, he and his accomplices shot at us. I still remember a plume of dirt flying up just a few feet from my position.

My book exposes the fantasies that have arisen out of Peltier’s makeover: from a cold-blooded, unrepentant killer, to a wronged man, a Native American “prisoner of conscience.” Congressman Conyers, Leonard Peltier has no conscience when it comes to owning up to his crimes. In noting his conviction of aiding and abetting the murders, Peltier’s 1993 Parole Board concluded, “…the Commission is persuaded that the greater probability is that you yourself fired the fatal shots…” To this day, Peltier remains defiant, manipulative, and completely remorseless. Freeing this ruthless killer would be a terrible travesty of justice.

There was a time when Peltier might have earned his freedom if he had shown genuine contrition and had taken responsibility for his crimes. Instead, he has spent his years in prison hiding behind a manufactured persona of victimhood while conning millions of people out of their time and money in support of his evil defense. Peltier has made a mockery of Indians who have suffered genuine oppression and injustice.

Congressman Conyers, I hope you will view the Peltier video at my web site, www. americanindianmafia. com.It shows him constantly changing his story when confronted with the facts. Enclosed are more reasons why Peltier must not be granted a pardon. I hope you will not be one of those fooled by Peltier’s lies. Thousands of FBI Agents and law enforcement officers are counting on you to stand up against all efforts to free this guilty “cop killer.”

Regards,

Joe Trimbach

Reasons Why Leonard Peltier Should Never Receive a Presidential Pardon

1. Peltier was fairly tried and fairly convicted. This is the conclusion of every federal judge who’s reviewed the case. Since his conviction in 1977, the evidence against Peltier has been repeatedly confirmed, expanded, and corroborated. Peltier is no more a political prisoner than is Charles Manson.For the facts of the case, see:noparolepeltier. com/585. html(Note FN 15: “The two witnesses testified outside the presence of the jury that after their testimony at trial, they had been threatened by Peltier himself that if they did not return to court and testify that their earlier testimony had been induced by F.B.I. threats, their lives would be in danger.”.)

2. Facts of the case prove that Peltier opened fire on the Agents from a distance of over 200 yards. Armed with only their side arms, both young men were soon wounded. After the initial shooting ended, Peltier, along with two other men, walked down to the wounded Agents and finished them off, shooting them both in the face at point-blank range.

3. A few months after the murders, Peltier bragged about killing Ron Williams, as recalled by Ka-Mook Banks in a separate murder trial in 2004. Under oath, Banks recalled Peltier’s exact words: “The motherfu-er was begging for his life but I shot him anyway.” See:jfamr. org/doc/kmtest1. html. To this day, Peltier remains completely unrepentant and utterly without remorse.

4. Peltier has parlayed his Native American ancestry into a successful defense fund, bilking millions of people out of their time and money. He has fooled Amnesty International, Mikhail Gorbachev, Nelson Mandela, Bishop Desmond Tutu, and the Dali Lama. Peltier is supported by Hollywood heavyweights Robert Redford, David Geffen, and Oliver Stone, all of whom have fallen prey to his propaganda machine. President-elect Obama needs to be briefed on the facts of the case in order to withstand the pressure from his political supporters.

5. Freeing an unrepentant murderer is contrary to all principles of parole and rehabilitation. It would undermine law enforcement efforts, subvert the rule of law, and compound the anguish of the victims’ families. A presidential pardon would be particularly devastating to FBI Agents who risk their lives every day in pursuit of criminals. A pardon would also be detrimental to American interests by giving ammunition to our enemies. They will point to our system of justice as one that convicts innocent Native Americans, thus confirming their argument that Peltier was wrongfully convicted and that our court system is unfair. Worldwide media will parrot these conclusions as if they are fact-based.

6. A Peltier pardon would undermine efforts to investigate crimes on Indian reservations. Many Indians would view his freedom as a sign that the FBI and the Justice Department had always tried to mislead Indian Country about the facts of the case. Many Indians would be more reluctant to cooperate with current investigations.

7. Peltier escaped from prison in July 1979 during which a young Indian was shot and killed. Peltier claimed he was targeted by the FBI for assassination. The truth is that he had planned his escape for several years, and counted on help from outside contacts. Peltier must be held responsible for the needless death he caused and for threatening a man from whom he stole a truck during his escape.The Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals found that Peltier threatened witnesses who testified against him during his trial

8. If Peltier is freed, it will be much more difficult to indict him on other murders where he may have been involved. In one of these cases, Peltier interrogated a young woman, Anna Mae Aquash, by putting a loaded gun in her mouth.See:americanindianmafia. com/audio/GunInHerMouthReMix. wmv. Aquash was murdered three months later by the American Indian Movement leadership. (The alleged triggerman in that case finally goes on trial in February 2009 in federal court, Rapid City.)

9. Contrary to his claims, Peltier has always put himself above the welfare of Native Americans. One of his recent newsletters opened with the words, “May Death Be Upon You, FBI.” These are not the thoughts of an innocent man, but rather the wish of someone wanting to stir up violence. Peltier would like nothing better than to agitate for criminal acts against Indians who oppose his freedom and who count on the FBI to apprehend evildoers on the reservation. Peltier has nothing but contempt for our system of justice. He has done nothing to earn his freedom. He is guilty and should stay in prison until he dies a natural death.

John Trimbach

Trimbach & Associates, Inc.

Peachtree City, GA

Phone : 770-883-5086

Fax : 770-631-3696

Contact John M.Trimbach

So, why would an FBI agent who was there write a book and then that?

Source

Q:
Mr. Trudell, did you have a conversation with Annie Mae Aquash with reference to David Price?

A:
Yes, I did…

Q:
And would you indicate for the record what she said to you and what you said to her?

A:
She told me she had been arrested at Crow Dog’s and…Price saw her and when he saw her he shined his flashlight on her and when he saw who she was he said, “There you are. We have been looking for you,” and that is all the conversation that took place there. They took them all to Pierre and she said during her interrogation by Price and another agent…that Price had told her he knew that she knew who shot those agents, and that she could – should cooperate, and if she would, she would get a new identity, and she would get a new place to live…She cussed at him and he told her that if she wanted to have that attitude he would see her dead within a year…
The last time I saw her was the first – very first part of October, I believe – in Los Angeles. She told me at the time that she would go back to court and then the next time I saw anything, I saw her on TV in Oregon, three days before she was going to appear in court, and she had been arrested with Kamook Banks and Russell Redner and Kenneth Loud Hawk in Oregon in Oregon and that was the last time I ever saw her [the results of this arrest are chronicled in Loud Hawk – The United States versus the American Indian Movement, Kenneth S. Stern, University of Oklahoma Press, ISBN 0-8061-2587-X]. She went back…

– snip –

Q:
Didn’t you tell her that if she didn’t cooperate with you she would be dead within a year?

A:
No, I did not.

Q:
If you did, you would, of course, say so?

A:
I did not say those words.

Q:
I am not asking those questions. If you had made such an expression to her, a potential witness, you would admit it under oath, wouldn’t you?

Prosecution:
I object. The question has been asked and answered three times.


Source

A recently uncovered FBI document, discovered through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), strongly suggests that the FBI choose not to prosecute anyone for the murder of Anna Mae for 29 years, but instead to covered up for those whom they knew were implicated in her murder, to protect an operative/informant working with them.

Why? Let’s say it’s because his credibility is lacking.


Amnesty International urges Clinton to grant pardon to Leonard Peltier

Amnesty International is today calling on President Clinton to grant Leonard Peltier presidential pardon before leaving office. Leonard Peltier, a Native American Indian, has been in prison for 23 years for the murder of two Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) agents.

– snip –

Amnesty International believes that the evidence that Peltier shot the two FBI agents is far from conclusive. One of the organization’s pivotal concerns was that his extradition from Canada was on the basis of a testimony by an alleged eye-witness who was coerced by the FBI into making false statements. In a recent public hearing in Toronto, Canada, Myrtle Poor Bear reasserted that her original claim — that she was Peltier’s girlfriend and that she saw him shoot the agents — was false, and was a result of months of threats and harassment from FBI agents. She had also said that she had been 80 kilometers (50 miles) away from the scene at the time of the shooting.

Amnesty International has repeatedly voiced serious concerns over the fairness of the legal proceedings which led to Leonard Peltier’s conviction and sentence, and believes that political factors may have influenced the way in which the case was conducted.

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Petition: Obama Free Leonard Peltier!

Therefore Be It Resolved, that we require the new incoming President Barack Obama immediately offer a Presidential Pardon to Mr. Leonard Peltier so that Leonard may join his children and grandchildren and continue the fight for Indigenous freedom.


Source

It should be noted that, using the preliminary figure of only 61 homicides of AIM members and supporters during the same period, researchers Bruce Johansen and Roberto Maestas, in their book “Wasichu:The Continuing Indian Wars (New York:Monthly Review Press, 1979, pp. 83-4), arrived at the following analysis of its implications: Using only documented political deaths, the yearly murder rate on Pine Ridge Reservation between 1, 1973 and March 1, 1976, was 170 per 100,000. By comparison, Detroit, the reputed murder capital of the United States, had a rate of 20.2 per 100,000…An estimated 20,000 persons were murdered in the United States during 1974. In a nation of 200 million persons, a murder rate comparable with that of Pine Ridge between 1973 and 1976 would have left 340,000 persons dead for political reasons alone in one year; 1.32 million in three…The political murder rate at Pine Ridge between March 1, 1973, and March 1, 1976, was almost equivalent to that in Chile during the three years after a military coup supported by the United States deposed and killed President Salvador Allende…Based on Chile’s population of 10 million, the estimated fifty thousand persons killed in three years of political repression in Chile (1973-1976) roughly paralleled the murder rate at Pine Ridge.

McCain and the Cross of Coal: GOP Front-Runner Tied to Theft of Navajo Lands

( – promoted by navajo)

According to an article over at the American Computer Science Organization:

A public research website: http://www.cain2008.org has brought together diverse historical elements of factual proof that Senator John McCain’s was the key “point man” introducing, enacting and enforcing law that removed Dineh-Navajo Families from their reservation on the Black Mesa in Arizona. The McCain revised law relocated them to Church’s Hill, Nevada (a Nuclear Waste Superfund Site, called “the New Lands” in PL 93-531). The Dineh-Navajo, a deeply spiritual and peaceful people, engaged in only peaceful resistance to being moved off lands they’d owned since 1500 A.D. Nonetheless, the Public Press and UN depicted brutalization, rights deprivation and forcible relocation.

The cain2008 website quotes from the UN report directly:

“The Black Mesa region in Arizona, USA is home to the indigenous communities of the Dineh (Navajo) and Hopi peoples. This region also contains major deposits of coal which are being extracted by North America’s largest strip mining operation. The coal mines have had a major impact on families in the region. Local water sources have been poisoned, resulting in the death of livestock. Homes near the mines suffer from blasting damage. The coal dust is pervasive, as well as smoke from frequent fires in the stockpiles. Not coincidentally, the people in the area have an unusually high incidence of kidney and respiratory disease.”

“The Dineh (otherwise known as Navajo) were stripped of all land title and forced to relocate. Their land was turned over to the coal companies without making any provisions to protect the burial or sacred sites that would be destroyed by the mines. People whose lives were based in their deep spiritual and life-giving relationship with the land were relocated into cities, often without compensation, forbidden to return to the land that their families had occupied for generations. People became homeless with significant increases in alcoholism, suicide, family break up, emotional abuse and death.”

— Marsha Monestersky for the UN Commission on Human Rights and Women Enacting Change at the UN

Will we hear more about the plight of the Sovereign Dineh Nation (SDN) in the mainstream media, or from the Democratic candidates? I won’t hold my breath, as Native American issues don’t even seem to register on their radar. That was made more than clear when Democratic President Bill Clinton left American Indian Movement [AIM] leader Leonard Peltier to rot in prison on frame-up murder charges, after already serving 25 years. Oh, and this was despite pleas for executive clemency for Peltier from Coretta Scott King, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, and the United Nations High Commissioner for Humans Rights, among others.

The Minnesota History Society briefly describes AIM’s history:

AIM’s leaders spoke out against high unemployment, slum housing, and racist treatment, fought for treaty rights and the reclamation of tribal land, and advocated on behalf of urban Indians whose situation bred illness and poverty. They opened the K-12 Heart of the Earth Survival School in 1971, and in 1972, mounted the Trail of Broken Treaties march on Washington, D.C., where they took over the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA), in protest of its policies, and with demands for their reform.

The revolutionary fervor of AIM’s leaders drew the attention of the FBI and the CIA, who then set out to crush the movement.

Leonard Peltier was a victim of the FBI program, Cointelpro. But it’s not just secretive policies of the FBI and CIA. Mainstream politicians have participated in the rape and destruction of Native Americans since this nation’s inception. Politicans like McCain work in tandem with the repressive apparatus of the state to line the pockets of the coal, mining and energy companies at the expense of the lives of poor Native Americans, mindlessly destroying their cultures in the process.

John McCain’s lurid participation in the latest scandal is part of a terrible history, part of a history that must be cleaned up if this country is to survive in any effective sense, and not continue its dizzying descent into moral and economic chaos and violent repression.

Hat tip to Winter Rabbit for alerting me to this story. See her excellent article on it at Daily Kos.

(This article originally posted at Invictus.)

Bringing Leonard Peltier to Iowa and New Hampshire

( – promoted by navajo)

Leonard Peltier is one reason I can’t support Hillary Clinton for president.  I was one of thousands who petitioned Bill Clinton to grant Leonard a pardon. Thanks to Harvey Wasserman for reminding others of the history of Peltier and Bill Clinton.

The disagreements are deep and generally predictable. But it is equally predictable that there is one issue—one man— being totally ignored by the mainstream media. His case marks the moral low point of the Clinton Era. He deserves to be a part of the primary process.

His name is Leonard Peltier.

Bill Clinton was thoroughly and repeatedly briefed on the Peltier case throughout his presidency. Yet eight years came and went, and Leonard Peltier was left to rot. Desperate last-minute pleas as he prepared his final pardon list were to no avail. It would have been easy enough for Clinton to “triangulate” by merely ordering that Peltier get a new trial.

Yet Bill Clinton left the White House fully aware that George W. Bush would do no such thing.

This is not an issue that should go unmentioned in these early primaries. Hillary Clinton is most certainly aware of the case of Leonard Peltier. She should be asked early and often whether she, as president, would have the courage and commitment to justice to at very least grant Leonard Peltier the new trial her husband would not. All the other candidates on both sides of the aisle should be asked the same thing.

We cannot save our national soul without bringing justice to bear for Leonard Peltier. No one should enter the White House without a clear commitment to doing just that.

The full article is here.

Dennis Kucinich is the only candidate I am aware of, who has given any time or mention to Native American issues.  

I have written all of the other candidates asking for their positions on issues like Peltier, the Cobell, sovereignty and trust issues, etc.  Not a single reply from any candidate.

I hope that others here, will also write the Democratic candidates and ask them to speak on what their positions on Native American issues are.