"News Fit to Transmit in the Post Cassini Flyby Era"
Peltier Storm ^ Quarter of a Century Mark
Tuesday's storm in New England was a blast, up to 30 inches overnight. It was fitting for something big to happen in nature at this quarter of a Century mark for Leonard Peltier in prison. He must feel this day deeply, and with the fresh wounds of high expectations turned down from the Clemency rejection, he must feel disgust, sadness.., not just for himself and family, but also for a Country intimidated by the highest level of law enforcement. It is not good when 500 FBI Agents march to the White House to influence a Presidential Clemency decision.
Much of the day for many humans in the northeast USA, on Feb. 6, was spent digging out of snow. They can count themselves lucky; Leonard is buried in concrete separate from his family, friends and nature. His sentence, based on all the available evidences, is excessive. He did not shoot the agents, and he was justifiably present that day at the Jumping Bull Ranch with a rifle in hand, as a defender of terrorized people. The examples of FBI's misconduct in his case are evident and scary.
To get the word out, the Leonard Peltier Support Group of Greater New England, Arise for Social Justice and I.AIM joined in a demonstration at the Federal Building, Main Street, Springfield, MA. Another group, Hampden County Chapter of Mass. Citizens Against the Death Penalty was present, too. The groups shared a first rate public address system and the speakers shared common concerns of justice for Leonard Peltier and for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to maintain its standards to outlaw the death penalty, especially in view of an obviously broken or corrupt federal justice system.
Until Leonard is free, all Americans partake of a shameful time in our Country's history. The FBI could prove me wrong by releasing those 6,000+ documents still withheld. But the answer is likely linked to why they are keeping them so secret, which Leonard alludes to the reason in the following press release excerpt from his book, Prison Writings: My Life Is My Sun Dance. The basic element linking the injustices of Leonard Peltier and Ballistic Missile Defense together is Uranium. Unless we change the current misguided national security policies of the U.S. government, life is threatened. Nonviolence and disarmament go together like violence and death; our choices can make a sustainable future or nothing at all, and time for such a potentially fatal decision is running out. The last paragraph in the following press release has ideas on how you can help a campaign for awareness and hope. Later, Flyby News looks forward to announcing such a campaign for the expected EnviroVideo release and book by Karl Grossman. This information needs to be viewed by the public and they need to urge their Congressional Representatives to investigate the injustices of Leonard Peltier and to honor the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty by stopping the proposed Missile Defense program. If Organizations and individuals unite effectively, then, there is a chance of making a difference during the current Bush Administration, from a promise of death and destruction to the possibility of undoing the harm already committed.
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Leonard Peltier Support Group / Greater New England
Box 9534, North Amherst, MA 01059; Tel 413-549-2739
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
International Day of Protest for the Arrest of Leonard Peltier
February 6, 2001 marked the 25th year of the unjust imprisonment of Leonard Peltier. Human rights leaders and organizations around the world are organizing to respond to the recent denial of Executive Clemency by President Clinton. Many are calling for members of the U.S. Congress to hold investigative hearings regarding violations of Leonard Peltier's Human and Constitutional Rights.
Documented FBI and prosecution misconduct includes terrorizing Myrtle Poor Bear to sign a false affidavit, then committing fraud to the Canadian government by presenting her statement in the Extradition process. They also terrorized and coerced three teenaged boys into giving false testimonies to the grand jury and at the trial. They concealed a ballistics test reflecting Peltier's innocence from the defense, and the FBI expert witness gave distorted testimony to the jury. Yet, they denied Leonard Peltier a new trial on a technicality, with the Judge admitting that a strong doubt was cast on the prosecution's case. Most disturbing is that Leonard Peltier's highly controversial conviction was deeply rooted in one of the most grim chapters of recent American civil rights history, specifically the Pine Ridge Reign of Terror. Between 1973 and 1976 FBI-supported vigilantes terrorized, battered and assaulted scores of Lakota Traditionalists and AIM supporters throughout the Reservation. They burned houses and entire families were wounded by drive-by shootings. With high FBI presence during 1973 to 1976, not one of more than sixty murders was investigated. Why?
In his book, Prison Writings: My Life Is My Sun Dance, Leonard Peltier wrote, "Someday the true reasons for their ill-conceived assault, what really was going on, will come out. The answer or answers, if they haven't already been shredded, may lie in those 6,000+ FBI documents they admit having withheld to this day, both from us and from the American public, on grounds of "national security." Lately, I understand, they claim those documents have been "lost." Certainly it was no accident that the day before the gunfight at Oglala, the head of the nontraditional tribal government was signing over to the federal government one-eighth of the Pine Ridge reservation, an area reputedly rich in uranium deposits. Many of us believe that the shoot-out at Oglala was specifically intended as a diversion to conceal that illegal deal, which wasn't revealed to the public for nearly a year. The public furor over the death of the two agents also scotched a planned Congressional investigation of what had happened at Wounded Knee Two in 1973 and the subsequent Reign of Terror on Pine Ridge that led to the Oglala firefight on June 26, 1975."
The freedom of Leonard Peltier is vital for human rights, environmental protection and Constitutional freedom for all Americans. It represents truth and reconciliation with the first Americans and the U.S. government. Supporters are encouraged to call their Congressional Representatives (202) 224-3121 to support a review of the Peltier case and for the release of the 6,000+ documents still withheld from the public. You can also help support gaining investigative hearings by reviewing and distributing the Peltier May 2000 Congressional Briefing video. To receive this tape send $15 to the Leonard Peltier Defense Committee; P.O. Box 583; Lawrence, KS 66044 Tel (785)842-5774; http://www.FreePeltier.org. For New England E-mail updates reply to firstname.lastname@example.org with subscribe in subject. The Leonard Peltier Support Group and I.AIM are planning a benefit music event at the Fire and Water Cafe in Northampton Thursday April 26, 2001 from 7 to 10pm. Also, they are presenting the Peltier Congressional video Thursday March 22 (8-10pm) at the Unitarian Society on Main Street in Northampton, MA.
"In the Spirit of Crazy Horse - Free Leonard Peltier"
Artwork by Lahri Bond, lithographic prints available