From: Els Date: 18 Feb 2008, 08:36 AM
ONLINE PETITION FOR EXECUTIVE CLEMENCY
Please click on link
PETITION IN SUPPORT OF LEONARD PELTIER
Silence, they say, is the voice of complicity.
But silence is impossible.
Silence is a message,
just as doing nothing is an act.
Let who you are ring out and resonate
in every word and every deed.
Yes, become who you are.
There’s no sidestepping your own being
or your own responsibility.
What you do is who you are.
You are your own comeuppance.
You become your own message.
You are the message.
THE BIG SECRET
by DJ Lee
February 7, 2008
Leonard Peltier has been called the American Mandela. Informed people around the world question how this Native American man can be imprisoned for so long by those who know he is innocent. During the 32 years of his incarceration, the list of people calling for his release has grown to include former U.S. Attorney General Ramsey Clark, the Dalai Lama, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Amnesty International and even the European, Belgian and Italian Parliaments. Why he is still behind bars is a question that we in this country should ask. For those who do, it can be a life-altering experience in which cherished assumptions about our country’s history and about our government are weakened (if not destroyed).
Since the 1970s, questions have persisted concerning the events at the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, the FBI’s involvement in those events, as well as Leonard Peltier’s capture and trial. The FBI still withholds over 150,000 pages of material evidence that have never been made available to Leonard Peltier or his attorneys. The FBI argues that this material should not be subject to automatic declassification because it could damage national security and the so-called war on transnational terrorism. The fact that under Executive Order 12958 this material should have been declassified after 25 years seems to not apply in a world where 9/11 has become the new and improved version of Joseph Heller’s Catch-22.
The term political prisoner is one that our government would deny. For those informed enough to have an opinion, it is one that applies not only to Leonard Peltier, but to scores of people serving time in both federal and state institutions, people like former Black Panther Veronza Bowers. On the testimony of paid government informers, he served close to three decades in federal prison, only to have his mandatory release date rescinded by former Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez. It was just hours before he was to be reunited with his family outside the Coleman Federal Correctional Complex in Florida when he learned that serving a full sentence and being a model prisoner meant nothing to a government bent on trading fairness and impartiality for a partisan political agenda. Veronza Bowers currently continues his hope for freedom, if not justice, from a cell in the Bennettsville Correctional Institution in South Carolina.
The Jericho Movement (www.thejerichomovement.com) is a movement that seeks recognition of the fact that political prisoners and prisoners of war exist inside the United States. It is a movement that works for the amnesty and freedom of these prisoners, some like Leonard Peltier, who are incarcerated not so much for what they have done, but for what they think and represent.
The BIG SECRET that the corporate and governmental powers of our country don’t want you to know is that YOU have the power. You have the power to shatter the silent voice of complicity that allows the caging of such spirits as Leonard Peltier. You have the power to stop sidestepping your responsibility.
It takes effort and courage to see beyond the politics of fear and the daily dose of media created reality we are fed. It takes effort to separate rhetoric and illusion from facts and reality. If, as Leonard Peltier says, "what you do is who you are" and that "doing nothing is an act," then perhaps Leonard Peltier is still in jail because the action we have chosen is… nothing.