Facing Reality: Political Prisoner News and Updates

Story Transcript

JARED BALL: Welcome everyone back to The Real News Network. I’m Jarred Ball here in Baltimore. Joining us once again for his segment on political prisoners facing reality is Jihad Abdulmumit. Jihad is a former political prisoner himself as part, as a result of his work with The Black Panther Party and Black Liberation Army. And he is currently also the national co-coordinator for the National Jericho Movement, whose goal it is to free all political prisoner and grant amnesty to those still so imprisoned. Welcome back to The Real News Jihad.

JIHAD ABDULMUMIT: Welcome. Thank you brother Jared and greeting of peace to the listening audience.

BALL: So as we’ve been wanting to do with you uh, each week, you have an update for us on several political prisoners including the recent services for Mondo we Langa. Please tell us what’s been going on.

ABDULMUMIT: Yeah, wonderful service last Saturday for brother Mondo we Langa. We had it at the Malcolm X Memorial Center, which is the location and place of Malcolm X’s birth, where he was raised initially in Omaha and the have a wonderful, beautiful center there. There were a lot of good speakers there. Former Chairperson Chuck [inaud] Johnson who was on last week. We had her comment on the death of Mondo. She presented. And we had Sister Angela Davis, Professor Davis was there also. And myself and a host of wonderful people presenting the life and times of Mondo. The lesson that we want to draw from that whole experience of course is to this serious initiatives and efforts that must be made to free these freedom fighters from prison. Now we have a brother that’s passed away after doing about 45 years in prison for a case, for a crime that he was accused of that he did not commit. And the evidence was so skewed that even a blind person could have seen how contrived that was. But he nevertheless, he passed away and I will say it with all due respect, he passed away on our watch. Our comrade passed away on our watch. He died in prison after doing four decades, going on five decades in prison. And so for all of us active in the community, that understand these issues is… just begs the question… our responsibility of beating the drum, making known who our freedom fighters were. And just doing all we can, even if it’s just writing a letter, sending commissary money, writing to the Parole Board, tuning in and right now… so you can always tune in on the Jericho website. www.jerichomovement, to be in tune. And we cannot forget the remaining Omaha 2 prisoner, Mondo’s comrade, Ed Pointdexter, who still remains there, in the Nebraska State Penitentiary, who’s in the same amount of time and he has his own medical issues that he’s confronted with.

BALL: So as we try not to fall down on our watch, uh, regarding several others who are still living behind those walls, uh, quickly if you can update us on some of those folks and where they are and how people interested can get involved to help them.

ABDULMUMIT: Yes, really briefly, um… We have several Pro hearing coming up, um, on the radar as we’ve been mentioning consistently- Dr. Mutulu Shakur. I believe that’s coming up real soon. April the 5th is the date that we have. You can check his own website, Mutulu Shakur’s website, and the Jericho website for any changes in that. And always, letters to the parole board, letters to Mutulu himself are always needed to show support. We have Jalil Muntaquim that’s coming up in a couple of months. June I believe. Go to his website, once again- access the Jericho website. These two freedom fighters…

BALL: And by the way, just really quickly, uh before you get to Herman Bell, I just want to remind people that they can go back and see our previous segments where we have focus on the case of doctor Mutulu Shakur and Jalil Muntaquim And even as I understand you’re about to say something about Herman Bell- him as well, but please continue.

ABDULMUMIT: Yes yes, indeed. Herman Bell, our brother Herman Bell- also in the New York state system with Jalil. He was denied parole I understand. So once again, on our watch… and it’s not our fault, it just means that we have to just do that much more to ensure that we’ve done all we can you know, for the liberation of those who fought for our freedoms and our defense and our protection against police brutality. Help feed and clothe and shelter our brothers and sisters, our grandmothers and our grandfathers in the community, whether they were at home or on the street. So he was denied parole, so the struggle continues with him. We have a brother who has not been mentioned on this program to date, Romaine Chip Fitzgerald, who is a member of the Black Panther Party in Southern California, serving two life sentences. He’s on the radar now. He has uh, two life sentences for allegedly [inaud] the deaths of two police officers. And we… he’s been… he might be one of our longer political prisoners now, pushing up to fifty years of incarceration. And then we have Ruchell Magee whose well over 50 years. So you can imagine the amount of time… We talk about 50 years of incarceration. Just going into your bathroom and stay there that long. It’s just, it’s just a ridiculous amount of time. It’s a serious human rights violation, particularly when we know that these individuals were responding to the racism and violence in our community. Many of their cases are contrived and set up by the counter-intelligence program of the FBI. And even for those that may have been truly implicit in their own cases, that they know they stood up for our freedoms and protecting us against police violence. The same violence that we see exacted upon our young sisters and brothers today in the streets of America.

BALL: You know, you’ve mentioned Angela Davis’s name as being part of Mondo we Longa service, but having now just mentioned Ruchell Mage, it’s important, I think, to remind folks that as famous as Angela Davis is, Magee was at least temporarily her co-defendant and is still not free. So so, as people focus on Black Lives Matter and the trails going on around the country related to their activism, the potential creation of a new generation of political prisoners, and as people are often attuned to the notoriety of a person like Angela Davis, I think as you have been doing here, it’s important to remind folks that underneath that popularity are still folks locked up that struggled with and struggled with them in that generation

ABDULMUMIT: Indeed.

BALL: But anyway, Jihad, I just wanted to give you one final moment here to wrap up and final thoughts here or comments for this addition before we move on.

ABDULMUMIT: Yes yes, thank you brother Jared. Just once again to encourage our listening audience that this is an ink pen [inaud], not being sarcastic. But we have to put our, our writing into effect. That’s one of the strongest things we have. The ink of a scholar. Writing a letter is very powerful to the Parole Commission, to the freedom fighters themselves to the defense committee. Picking up the phone, calling. We did have one release- Brother Muhamid Kati [inaud], who was released from North Carolina. This brother was almost 90 years old. In fact he was 90 years old. He did 40 years in prison. He was released. But once again justice delayed is justice denied. So we’re glad he’s home with us now. He’s a name we may not be familiar with but once again, you can access the Jericho website to get the history of him. So people do trickle out after doing you know, ¾’s of their life in prison and at the age of almost 100 years old. We really have to be on our case with these sisters and brothers and I encourage you to do so. And anything that you do, long capacity and resources- we so much sincerely appreciate what you do.

BALL: Jihad Abdulmumit, thank you again for joining us here at The Real News Network for Facing Reality- again a segment focusing on political prisoners.

ABDULMUMIT: Thank you, Brother Jared. All power to the people.

BALL: And thank you all for joining us, wherever you are in the World. Again I’m Jared Ball. For all involved here in Baltimore, saying as Fred Hampton used to say, “To you we say peace, if you’re willing to fight for it.” So peace everybody and we’ll catch you in the whirlwind.

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